A major survey of religious opinion shows that large majorities of believers are in favour of legalising assisted dying.
The poll, carried out by YouGov for the Westminster Faith Debates and involving nearly 4,500 people, reveals that only among Muslims and Baptists are there majorities against a change in the law that prohibits assisted suicide.
Majorities of Anglicans, Catholics, Jews, Hindus, Sikhs, Methodists and Pentecostalists are in favour of changing the law.
Christian groups reacted with dismay to the results. Austen Ivereigh, of the lobby group Catholic Voices, said: “It shows how little exposed even practising religious people are to the teachings of their church…”
A Church of England spokesman said: “This study demonstrates that complex discussions on topics such as assisted suicide and euthanasia cannot be effectively conducted through the medium of online surveys.”
Demonstrating that dumbthink about surveys isn’t limited to members of our Republican Party.
The poll shows that the proportion of believers who say they make up their minds with the help of “local or national religious leaders” is 2% among Anglicans and 9% among Catholics. Most people rely on their own judgment or on reason when making moral decisions, and among those groups there is overwhelming support for a change in the law.
Aye, there’s the rub. That part about relying on your own judgement.
American Catholics, Baptists, fundamentalist True Believers in general accept no free will, self-education or self-reliance for critical decisions. The Father or Big Brother in charge tells you to obey his rules preferably as writ in the 14th Century. Whichever rationale is offered – your role is to obey.