In a world of so much ridiculous news, for instance when the leader of the Labour Party thinks it’s a good idea after a fight with his own MPs to make a video in which he makes light of the incident, a piece of visual entertainment in which he also says that Labour MPs shouldn’t go on and on about internal party battles, all while making a video in which he as a Labour MP talks about nothing but internal Labour Party battles, you’d think nothing would be ridiculous enough to stand out. But every once in a while, something breaks through.
A company which manufactures a product they call the “Real Easter Egg” was looking for some publicity – and the right of centre press was very happy to oblige. For you see, it turns out a lot of manufacturers of chocolate eggs don’t bother to put the word “Easter” on their merchandise, and the “real” Easter egg happily fills this gap in the market. Clearly, the reason Cadbury’s has removed the name of the holiday from its packaging is because “Christianity is under attack”. Better yet, a further reason that the word “Easter” is absent from chocolate egg packaging? You guessed it, the Islamification of Great Britain.
This is all so painfully idiotic, it’s hard to know where to begin attacking this whole thing, but here goes. For a start, the word “Easter” has been missing from a lot of chocolate egg packing materials for a really long time in this country, going back until at least the 1970s. If I had to guess why this is, it’s obviously been done for commercial reasons (since this is what determines what is on any product packaging) and the underlying reason why this is so would have nothing whatsoever to do with Islam or “attacking Christianity”. It’s because Britain isn’t really a Christian country and has not been for a very long time – it is a secular one.
Don’t believe me? Any poll taken in the recent past will tell you this precisely. A big one done in 2015 revealed that 53% of Britons consider themselves atheist. For those of you who find maths tricky, that’s over half. Only 30% considered themselves religious. Not Christian – that 30% includes the Muslims as well. That means at best around a quarter of the people living in the UK consider themselves Christian. That doesn’t sound like a particularly Christian country to me.
Three further points to bring up here on all this. One: ironically enough, the group of people most likely – if they were forced to have an opinion on whether or not taking the word “Easter” off of Easter related products was good or bad – who would overwhelmingly think it was bad, would actually be Muslims. Christian traditions are respected in Islam, and if there’s any religion that isn’t keen on the secularisation of society and particularly religious events, it is Islam. The idea that secularising Easter would be done for the sake of Muslims demonstrates a profound ignorance of Islam in the extreme. Two, could someone please tell me what the Right’s view on Christianity actually is these days? Seriously, one minute they’re talking about how the overbearing church should butt out of national life, the next second they’re bemoaning Christianity under attack. The last time I recall Christianity actually being under attack in this country was when the Archbishop of Canterbury had a go at austerity a few years back and every right-wing paper in the land told Welby to shut his God-fearing gob pronto.
Three, what the hell is traditionally Christian about fake eggs made out of chocolate in the first place? I don’t recall them being mentioned in the Bible anywhere. Were they pudding at the Last Supper, and that only made it into some text that didn’t make the ecumenical cut? Seriously, if I was going to attack Christianity, I think I could find a better target then subtly removing words from chocolate. If I was going to attack Christianity, I’d probably tell Justin Welby to shut up about austerity again – but don’t tell the Daily Mail that.