Scottish independence seems like a false god

Scottish independence seems like a false godChurch Times, 05 Sep 2014

Breaking up the UK would not help anyone, argues Nigel Biggar

IN A COUPLE of weeks’ time, on 18 September, the residents of Scotland will vote whether or not to leave the United Kingdom (Comment, 2 November 2012, 14 March 2014; Paul Vallely 29 August). One way or another, the outcome will affect all of us on these islands.

The Churches in Scotland have remained officially neutral, readying themselves for the work of reconciliation which will be needed to tackle the bitter disappointment that the referendum’s verdict is bound to generate.

Individual Christians, on the other hand, have ranged themselves on opposing sides of the debate. I am among them. As an Anglo-Scot, I am a visceral supporter of the Union between England and Scotland, and an opponent of Scottish separation. I am not impartial. Nevertheless, as a Christian, I have a duty to test my convictions against the moral implications of my faith. Continue reading

Scottish independence: a faith without sufficient reason

Alex Salmond

Alex Salmond: Where’s the substance?

by Nigel Biggar

“Scottish independence is a solution in search of a problem. Rather than the cogent conclusion of a rigorous analysis of particular woes afflicting the Scottish people, it’s an article of faith.

That’s why supporters of a Yes vote in September 18th’s referendum struggle to make a clear profit out of the empirical data, why they are wont to distort history, and why they so often react to criticism by tackling the man and not the ball. It’s also why the latest policies of the separatists — to keep the Queen, the pound, and membership of NATO — are so opportunistic.”

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Yes, war can be just

And just war reasoning is as sound as ever


“In a recent column here at The Week, Damon Linker responded to my book In Defence of War by concluding that ‘just war thinking, even at its very best, is an intellectual, moral, and theological fraud.'”

Read Nigel Biggar’s response to Damon Linker’s critique in The Week.

Podcast: Oh What a Lovely War? First World War Anniversary Lectures

First World War Anniversary Lectures Podcast2014 marks the one hundredth anniversary of the First World War, whose war dead still cascade down the north wall of the entrance to Christ Church Cathedral, and which continues to haunt the imagination of contemporary Britons, shaping our views of armed force, of authority, and of patriotism. This lecture series looks at aspects of the First World War.

Lecture Series Podcast