The Secular Europe March and Rally took place in central London on Saturday, with hundreds joining the British Humanist Association (BHA) in showing their support for a secular state and an end to religious privileges.
As well as the BHA, speakers from a range of supporting organisations including the Secular Medical Forum, Survivors Voice Europe, United Sikhs, National Secular Society, the Council of ex-Muslims of Britain, and One Law for All championed a secular state for all as one that protect human rights. Humanist Philosopher Richard Norman echoed the call from John Stuart Mill for the end of ‘faith’ school and the segregation of children and Professor Chris French of Goldsmiths University discussed beliefs and delusions, stating that ‘You can believe anything you want so long as your beliefs don’t have damaging effects on other people’.
Comedian Robin Ince rounded off the day stating that: ‘The biggest enemy of bigotry is to mix with the people that other people are trying to make you bigoted against’.
Commenting on the Secular Europe Campaign, philosopher AC Grayling, Vice-President of the British Humanist Association, said: ‘A secular society is a just society – an inclusive society, a progressive society, a society where no one voice drowns out the other voices. We need to keep on arguing and campaigning, not just for a secular Europe, but for a secular world.’
Distinguished Supporter of the British Humanist Association, Dr Sue Blackmore said: ‘A precious principle of any compassionate society is that everyone should be treated equally before the law, regardless of their beliefs. When believing, or not believing, in one God or another provides privilege or exclusion then freedom of expression and even freedom of thought are compromised. We must work for a truly secular Europe – fair to all of us who live here.’