Parliament Attempt to Undermine Religion from the Public Square

Country: Spain

Date of incident: August 24, 2010

Category: Social Hostility / Intolerance

Attack against: Faith

Area of case: Political



The political parties Esquerra Republicana, Izquierda Unida, and Iniciativa per Catalunya Verds, requested Parliament to pass a law to remove any religious sign and faith-related traditions -specially those related to Catholicism-, from the public square.

Ridao Martin, one of the supporters of the law, wants to ban religious symbols from public buildings, including official funeral ceremonies. While defending the removal of faith symbols from the public square to keep the administration secular, MP Martin asks to extend the privileges granted to the Catholic Church to other traditional creeds.
During the debate at the Parliament, Martin states that Spain is a secular country "with a lover, a mistress, a non-abandoned woman: the Catholic Church"... "I do not pursue to exclude God from society, but only from the administration, the government. We cannot tolerate the active presence of God in the public square, being on the street, and threatening us with excommunication", he adds. According to Martin, one of the cases that shows how "invasive" the Catholic Church has been is the Education Act. For the act religion is a mandatory assignment, and the church decides the content of the coursework. "Education should be limited to scientific contents not faith-based contents", claims Martin. In addition, the law proposed to breach the agreements between Spain and the Vatican, which, as an international treaty, would require a special formal procedure to be altered.
Official Source: http://www.congreso.es/public_oficiales/L9/CONG/DS/PL/PL_190.PDF (from page 4 onwards)