Pagan Police Association granted holidays to practise witchcraft
The proportion of these who happen to be in the police force must be minuscule, and yet there exists the Pagan Police Association.
Well, why not? We have the Muslim Police Association, the Christian Police Association (with a separate Catholic Police Guild), the Sikh Police Association, the Jewish Police Association, the Gay Police Association, the Black Police Association...
there is no logical end to the fracturing of any society along minority concerns: one may, after all, be a minority of one. And so this Pagan Police Association – who ‘worship nature and believe in many gods’ – has been granted the right to observe such holidays as Hallowe’en and the Summer Solstice. Doubtless, since the origin of the timing of Christmas and the naming of Easter are also pagan, they will enjoy those as well. Along with Thor’s birthday, the commemoration of Odin’s eye and Freyr’s fertility rite.
And yet this Association appears to have a membership of one. Or, at least, PC Andy Pardy’s eight annual immovable, immutable, non-negotiable pagan holidays appear to be of no consequence to anyone except PC Pardy (who happens to be a force ‘equality and diversity representative’).
A statement from Superintendent Simon Hawkins of Hertfordshire Police says it all: "While balancing operational needs, the force's religion and beliefs policy gives all staff the choice of re-allocating the traditional Christian bank-holiday festivals to suit their personal faith. This has been very well received from a number of faith groups, including Muslim and Jewish."
A spokesman for the Home Office confirmed: "The Government wants a police service that reflects the diverse communities it serves. It is down to individual forces to make reasonable adjustments to accommodate the religion or beliefs of individual officers, as far as operational requirements permit."
But in the true spirit of Anglicanism, there is already a pagan schism. For another officer, PC Andy Hill of Staffordshire Police, a practising Wiccan (basically, a witch) has founded the Pagan Police Group UK. He said: "Wiccan has always been a bit of a taboo religion, there are lots of misconceptions around it. This is nothing to do with black magic or devil worshipping. It is working with nature for good."
But is not PC Hill a religious bigot?
Who is he to condemn the sincerely-held beliefs of the devout Satan worshippers?
Who defines which religions are to be recognised or not? Who authorises the authorisation? Is the state defining religion? If so, by what criteria?
If the police are to be granted days for religious observance for every pagan idol under the sun, would they permit Satan worship? If not, why not? If so, could this right be extended to (say) school holidays or to Her Majesty’s Armed Forces? If so, could Her Majesty’s ships be legitimately used for Satan worship?
There must be more declared Jedi than there are Pagans. In fact, there are more registered Jedi in Strathclyde Police alone than there appear to be pagans in the entire national constabulary.
So why not have a Jedi Police Association?
Or a Gay Jedi Police Association?
Or a Gay Black Jedi Police Association?
Reductio ad absurdum.
It is not often you will hear Cranmer say this, but he agrees with the National Secular Society on this matter. Their spokesman Terry Sanderson said: “The police should call a stop to this and dismantle all religious groups.”
And not only the religious groups, but all of these politically-correct scissions, divisions and partitions.
Cranmer is all for freedom of religion: it is foundational to liberal democracy. But Her Majesty’s Police Service is not charged with the provision of religious services: it is not a theological college, a sexual health clinic or an identity counselling service. Police officers should be united by their uniform, not segregated by their sexual preferences, the gods they worship or the colour of their skin. Cranmer will probably be condemned for intolerance, but he is convicted that there should be no Black Police Association, or Gay Police Association, or any association or guild within the organisation, for they are often mutually exclusive, invariably foment division, and unavoidably detract from what the police are supposed to be about.