How the Left gave up on freedom

Apr 8, 2021 by

by Giles Fraser, UnHerd:

It’s been clear for months that Covid has shifted our political perspectives. But who, honestly, could have guessed 12 months ago that among the pandemic’s various casualties would be that foremost expression of political liberties, Magna Carta? It wasn’t very long ago that the Left regarded it as totemic. Yet today, it is increasingly seen as almost Trumpian, a piece of populist authority-denying rhetoric.

Clearly, something very odd has happened. Consider, for instance, the events of the last week. On Good Friday, the Christian community reflects on Jesus being taken before the Roman Authorities, charged with setting himself up as an alternative king. This year, the Polish Roman Catholic Church of Christ the King in Balham had the ingenious idea of incorporating a real police raid into the liturgy. The police broke up the gathering of Christian worshippers, rather effectively making the point that even in the most apparently benign of political circumstances, Christians derive their authority not from the law of the land but from a king who is not of this world.

Unfortunately, of course, it wasn’t a creative piece of liturgy. Someone had phoned the police to complain. We do not know if his name was Judas. But breakup the service they did. “This is an unlawful gathering,” announced the boys and girls in blue, threatening to fine those gathered in prayer. Despite the fact that — as images of the service clearly showed — most of the congregation were social distancing, wearing masks and had pre-booked their attendance, the police closed down the service on one of the holiest days of the year.

Read here

Read also: When the police enter a church, storm the altar and shut down worship, a line has been crossed by Archbishop Cranmer

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