Protestors Rally Against Pope’s State Visit to the UK

  • post Type / Members and partners
  • Date / 14 September 2010

Organizers of the “Protest the Pope” march and rally on Saturday 18th September have announced the speakers for the rally opposite Downing Street. The event is part of a wave of protest against the first ever official
state visit to Britain
by a Pope. Organizers include Humanist groups, human
rights organizations, and survivors of sex abuse by priests.

will gather at Hyde Park Corner before marching to Richmond Terrace (opposite Downing Street) for a rally which will include speeches

  • Barbara Blaine, SNAP, the Survivor’s Network of those
    Abused by Priests
  • Clara Connolly, Women Against Fundamentalism
  • Andrew Copson, British Humanist Association
  • Sue Cox, sex abuse survivor
  • Professor Richard Dawkins, scientist
  • Dr Ben Goldacre, journalist
  • Johann Hari, journalist
  • Father Bernard J Lynch, an openly gay catholic priest
  • Maryam Namazie, One Law for All
  • Pragna Patel, Southall Black Sisters
  • Terry Sanderson, National Secular Society
  • Peter Tatchell, human rights campaigner

Copson, British Humanist Association Chief Executive:

is outrageous that the UK
government is honouring the Pope with a state visit. The damage done by the
Holy See’s policies on sexual health, abortion, homosexuality and education are
reason enough to refuse him such an honour.’

Ben Goldacre, journalist:

am supporting the campaign because the Catholic Church, with their foolish and
aggressive campaign to stop people at risk from using condoms, exacerbate the
epidemic of AIDS which kills two million people every year. For such a powerful
international organisation, that claims to do good, this is barely forgivable.’

Sanderson, National Secular Society President:

Pope must be held to account for the suffering his Church has inflicted on so
many innocent people – not only the children, but also the adults who are
destined to carry the scars throughout their lives. We are  hearing about
so many lives blighted and ruined by the teachings of this church, and yet the
Pope is welcomed here as a hero. Our Government should hang its head in shame
that it is rolling out a red carpet for a man who has so many serious questions
to answer about the abuse of human rights.’

Tranchino, spokesperson for the Central London Humanist Group and Protest the Pope

message is mainly for our Democratic Institutions. On Saturday 18th of
September, we will assemble at 1.30 pm at the top of Piccadilly, we will march
through central London and conclude our protest
with a Rally opposite Downing Street. We
demand that our Government stop honouring the Pope as a Head of State. We must not
let the Vatican
consolidate its power in the European Institutions. It’s a pragmatic necessity
for the future of our liberal society that no religious leader should be
allowed to effectively deny human rights and have undemocratic influence on the
politics of our Country. It is outrageous and must be changed. No State Visit!’

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