New Religion, old hypocrisies

New Religion, old hypocrisies, by Janet Albrechtsen.

Today, there is a new religion, with a new moral code enforced by a new sainted class that includes corporate leaders, government bureaucrats, those at the top of industry groups, university vice-chancellors and sporting bosses too. Like old established religions, the clerics of the new ­religion presume to hold a monopoly over morality. This new papal class also enforces a rigid ­orthodoxy similar to old established ­religions.

Those who stray from this new moral code do so at their own risk. There are public condemnations so fierce they aim to rewrite history. Think of those same-sex marriage activists who have not just attacked tennis player Margaret Court for her beliefs but consider her thought crimes so ­serious that the Margaret Court Arena must be renamed. According to Billie Jean King, Court’s Christian views justify trashing her record of 24 Grand Slam singles titles. Note that Court is not asking King to subscribe to her views. But King demands that Court change hers or lose her standing as a tennis legend. Only in degree is that different from historical cases of estab­lished religions persecuting heretics.

The new religion makes no room for nonconformists. Its followers want to shut down voices of dissent. Instead of changing the channel or reading a different newspaper, Richard Di Natale was caught during the last election saying that he wanted sections of Sky and News Corp shut down.

Proponents of the new religion search and punish people for tiny transgressions, confecting fake outrage. And they make no room for redemption or forgiveness. …

It used to be the case that we rendered unto Caesar the things that were Caesar’s, and unto God the things that were God’s. The new moral code is so omnipresent it reaches on to sporting fields, into boardrooms, universities and ­bureaucracies.

The sacking of Israel Folau is bigger than a legal biff about a contract and a code of conduct. Folau was sacked for sinning against the new moral code. It is a totemic clash of religions, between old ones such as Christianity (but it could be Islam next) and the new religion promulgated by a new secular class that wants to stop a man from posting different moral judgments drawn from a centuries-old code of conduct called the Bible.

People who presume to speak about moral issues for others, rather than just themselves, are found in droves in corporate Australia. A new class of corporate clerics presumes to speak for shareholders on everything from same-sex marriage to changing the Australian Constitution to preference one race of people with a special chamber of their own.

Corporate clerics are easily identified. They spend more time virtue-signalling about getting the right gender balance and exposing society’s unconscious bias than they do on issues that go to the core of their business: boring ­issues such as tax reform and industrial relations reform. …

When it comes to thou shall implement gender equality, the new religion has become irrational and fanatical. As The Australian reported this week, the Queensland Mines Minister could not seek expert advice from the Coal Mining Safety and Health Advisory Committee because the committee, lacking 50-50 gender representation, was forced to cancel meetings. Meanwhile six workers died in Queensland mines and quarries in the past 12 months.