Friday, 29 May 2009

Christian Party claims it can stop the BNP - but it can't

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After Stephen Green and Christian Voice, the Reverend George Hargreaves' Christian Party is probably our favourite evangelical Christian pressure group – after all, how could you not be amused by a fundamentalist Christian political party led by a man who, during a period in which he says he "fell away from the Lord", wrote the timeless pop classics "So Macho" and "Cruising" for never-to-be-forgotten pop chanteuse Sinitta. "So Macho" was a huge gay anthem in its time, and Hargreaves himself has said it was intended "for women to dance round their handbags to and for the gay scene to go mad to on poppers", adding "I was never gay, but I had a lot of lovely friends in the gay scene."

Of course, since those heady days Hargreaves, aided by his royalties from those anthems, has spent his time preaching that homosexuality is a sin and campaigning for a more Christian Britain. He was behind the recent Christian response to the Atheist Bus Campaign, but our favourite political move of his has to have been when he campaigned for the dragon to be removed from the Welsh flag on the grounds that:
"Wales is the only country in history to have a red dragon on its national flag. This is the very symbol of the devil described in The Book of Revelation 12:3. This is nothing less than the sign of Satan, the devil, Lucifer that ancient serpent who deceived Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden. No other nation has had this red dragon as its ruling symbol. Wales has been under demonic oppression and under many curses because of this unwise choice."
So, you can see why we love him. But only when he's unlikely to impact on serious issues. But, as the political blog Harry's Place reports, Hargreaves has just launched a London billboard campaign encouraging voters to choose the Christian Party as a way of preventing the BNP making gains at next week's European elections. The boards, pictured above, have been placed in areas with large black Pentecostal populations, and claim (in very poor English, as MediaWatchWatch pointed out) that voting Christian Party is the best way of stopping the BNP. But as Harry's Place points out, this is most certainly not the case – all an increased vote for the Christian Party would do is dilute the vote of other parties with realistic prospects of standing in the way of of the BNP.

Harry's Place also suggests that Hargreaves real intention is "to cynically exploit the fear of electoral gains for the BNP in order to get him into the Euro Parliament", and that, with regards to gay rights, women's rights, and the rights of non-Christians, a vote for him would not be so different from a vote for the BNP:
"The Christian Party would use Hargreaves’s seat as a megaphone to attack human rights legislation that gave women control of their own bodies, single women their autonomy, and which protected lesbians and gay people from unfair discrimination. Non-Christians would be made to feel alien: the Christian Party’s manifest begins with a call for ”A Christian Europe”. Isn’t that the BNP’s job half done?"