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Anyone up for a Jedi bank holiday?

Anyone up for a Jedi bank holiday?

TORY MP Bob Blackman, pictured above pretending to be a Hindu, wants public holidays in the UK for Hindus and Muslims.

Creating these public holidays would be an important step towards promoting the understanding and tolerance of different faiths ­– not just at home, but abroad too.

We want other nations to look to the UK for a good example of positive integration, and for highly skilled prospective immigrants to consider coming to our country with a sense that their faith is a respected part of their identity.

The creation of two extra public holidays will cost the economy around £5-billion, but Blackman insusts there are “bigger considerations” at stake than cost alone.

If that’s the case, then surely we can afford to throw Jedis into the mix. When the last census was taken in 2011, the UK was shown to have 176,632 people describing themselves as Jedi Knights, the biggest grouping after Christianity, Islam, Hinduism, Sikhism, Judaism and Buddhism.

Blackman’s push for Eid and Diwali public holidays is doomed to failure, though. His e-petition, which says that Muslims and Hindus should have “the most important days in their faiths recognised in law”, has been rejected by the Government.

In its response to the petition, the Government said:

We are very aware of the importance of these festivals which are widely celebrated in the UK. Whilst we appreciate a new national holiday may benefit some communities and sectors, the cost to the economy remains considerable and any changes to the current arrangements would not take place without a full consultation.

The MP for Harrow East remains persistent. He pointed out that the economy would be boosted by £19bn:

If all public holidays were scrapped. That’s not likely to happen. I can’t believe any government would every dare to decide to cancel Christmas.

So we can’t make a case for or against further public holidays just on the basis of money. If we did, we wouldn’t have any public holidays at all.

Blackman sure has the hots for Hinduism. According to his website:

On 25th July, 2010, Bob was the only local dignitary to visit the ‘Hindu Experience’ where he saw at first hand the education being provided to local people on their duties to the whole community.

The event demonstrated what Hinduism has to offer to the world in every area of life. More than a religion it is a way of life and offers solutions to all of the problems of today and tomorrow.

This was an opportunity for people from all religions and backgrounds to understand Hinduism. Bob said ‘This was an excellent opportunity for everyone to learn about the beliefs of Hinduism and also understand the origins as well as the current implementation of Hinduism in a modern world.’

On June 29 this year, Blackman – Chairman of the All Party Parliamentary Group for British Hindus – took part in a procession of Hindu deities.

He said:

This was a joyous occasion for all Hindus and allowed the deities to be processed through local streets. The parade was colourful and conducted in a good spirit. I was privileged to lead the parade as well participating in the service of blessing for the deities before the procession began. It is important that the vibrant community in Harrow can all join in these celebrations as we promote greater understanding of all religions locally.

Hat tip: Marcus Robinson.

7 responses to “Anyone up for a Jedi bank holiday?”

  1. gedediah says:

    Yay, let’s have a bank holiday for every religion and never have to work again. I’m seriously rethinking my atheism.

  2. remigius says:

    A Jedi bank holiday?

    We already have Star Wars Day – May the 4th.

  3. Norman Paterson says:

    Public holidays are a good idea, and it seems fair enough to celebrate whatever people want. So why not? Just so long as religion is not the only justification; just so long as it stays voluntary. We have Darwin on our £10 banknotes after all; we have Hallowe’en and Walpurgis Night and midsummer and Yule and Up Helly Aa …

    If it’s anything like Xmas it won’t stay on the religious message for long.

  4. Trevor Blake says:

    In “The Bobliographon” from the Church of the SubGenius there is a calendar of high holy days. 365 of them, in fact. Please don’t oppress my sincere faith and force me to work those days.

  5. Broga says:

    He would have been better employed, over the years, exposing the savage torture of little girls. Otherwise known as Female Genital Mutilation. At last, after an ocean of agony for these little girls and pain that may never end, something seems at last to be happening.

    Can anyone enlighten me on why no action was taken on this blatant, extreme and known child abuse by the NSPCC, Social Services, Police or NHS? They kept their heads down over the decades. The NSPCC is usually quick enough to shout in its own self righteous way. Why not on this? And Social Services has a legal duty that it has ignored.

    Could it be because of our old friend religious sensitivity? Come to that the C.of E., RCs and Rabbis have also kept quite. I can see that being concerned about child abuse by others could be difficult for the Roman Catholics as they have so much of their own to concerned about.

  6. Angela_K says:

    Our country [UK] is in a financial mess so the last thing we need is more public holidays to curb productivity; we need people in work and at work. Would another public holiday make any difference to the huge numbers of people who refuse to work because life is financially better on the dole; I can think of one particular religion who like having the free time to play rent a mob every time their religion is criticised.

  7. charlie says:

    Back in the early to mid 1980’s I worked in the engineering model shop for a defense contractor. We made radar equipment. To show how “nice” the corporation was, they and many other defense contractors gave employees off for the holidays. We would work 1/2 day xmas eve day and return to work the first non weekend day after New Years Day.
    Sort of a PR stunt for them to claim they were “all for peace on earth” or some such total bullshit. My birthday falls in that time frame, so while I worked for them I usually had my birthday as a paid holiday. I say usually as one year we had a rush job and got our 1/2 day off for xmas eve and xmas, then back to work until we just did 1/2 day New Years Eve day and returned full time, regular schedule the day after New Years Day.
    My wife was a bit upset, until she saw the pay check. We got triple time for the days we worked during that holiday time. US tax dollars at work.
    Now, if only Social Security could give me “extra” in December as a birthday present………..LOL, yeah, I AM dreaming…….LOL.