Vox populi, Vox dei…

It’s the aftermath of the Election for the Scottish Parliament, and I am waiting to see whether the SNP are able to form a government.

It has been a difficult election for me – The Scottish Christian Party (SCP) and Scottish Christian People’s Alliance (splitters!) have both been distributing their medieval policy documents and popping up all over the press, sound biting away. The urge to leap in and start writing to journalists, turning up to hustings and generally being all subversive was overwhelming – but something I had agreed not to do…

When my Secret Fundie Informant mentioned that they wouldn’t be supporting the Christian People’s Alliance (CPA), because “if you vote for them, you vote for a muslim”, I knew we were in for an interesting situation, and the very real prospect that these two christian parties would do more harm to each other than an “evil atheist” like me ever could.

The one thing about your common or garden Evangelical Christian that you can almost guarantee is that they will resort to tribalism at every turn. It’s not enough for someone to be christian – they have to be 100% doctrinally compatible, or they end up hating each other even more than they hate the rest of us. A casual read at the CPA’s manifesto showed that they are basically catholic – it’s the usual bundle of “pro life” issues that get the catholics all fired up, but don’t generally cause the other denominations to break a sweat… and they did, indeed, have a muslim on the Glasgow list – pretty much a guarantee that the more rabid born again christians wouldn’t vote for them.

The SCP on the other hand are out and out Fundie evangelicals – the whole glassy eyed, frothing at the mouth, bible toting nine yards. Of course, they have their own little secret – and the clue is right there in the manifesto. The SCP manifesto is the usual catalogue of hate; pro death penalty, wanting to ship criminals to the third world, preventing woman from working (because they should stay at home with the kids, obviously…) and so on, then out of left field was this little gem:

“The Scottish Christian Party will seek that a minimum royalty percentage (the level of which should be decided through consultation with the music industry) should be paid to featured recording artists and producers on exactly the same basis as is currently paid to songwriters.”

Which is rather odd – in amongst the whistle stop tour of Leviticus inspired medieval legislation is a completely unrelated comment about copyright and royalties – hardly an issue for the majority of christians.

As it turns out, it is an issue VERY close to the heart of founder, funder and spokesman for the party, the not very Reverent George Hargreaves. It appears that our incredibly homophobic Rev Hargreaves produced the gay disco anthem “So Macho” by Sinnita and has been earning royalties from it ever since. Presumably, he would be earning even more royalties if he was the songwriter, hence this odd little manifesto commitment.

At least we now know where the money for the thousands of placards which have littered lampposts up and down the country came from…

Predictably, it turned nasty – the SCP pushed leaflets through letterboxes across the country stating that the “Christian Democrat Party” had decided not to campaign in the election, so as not to compete with their “brothers”. Quite correct, but very misleading, as the CPA had been describing themselves as “a christian democrat party” for some time. The SCP’s response? – The altogether immature “they are running a muslim candidate!” They would have had more success if they had tried “but they started it”.

The CPA were no more mature, however, indulging in agressive heckling at the Vote count at Glasgow’s SECC which descended into a good old fist fight – which they dragged a seventy year old SNP Politician into.

It’s unlikely that they would ever have stormed into power, but even so – the turnout for the Christian parties has been devastatingly poor. Less than 1.4% of the people who turned out (and that’s only about 46% of the population) voted for these guys.

Which means that I can have a good solid laugh at the fate of the god botherers, and turn to more serious concerns – like will the SNP manage to form a government? It’s an exciting and interesting time for me – I have been a nationalist (although not a member of the party) for as long as I have been able to vote, and this is the first time that we have come close to actually winning.

Numerically, I guess we have won – we have more MSPs than any other party, but that’s not a majority and not a strong enough position to move for a referendum on independence – there’s plenty of work to be done from here.