Government Blocking Atheist Web Pages

Over at Pharyngula, PZ Myers reports on a recent action by the city council of Birmingham, West Midlands, UK, installing blocking software on staff computers to block access to atheist webpages. As noted, this is not a matter of blocking religion pages in general to avoid disctractions from work. Instead, as noted in the BBC article:

The authority’s Bluecoat WebFilter computer system allows staff to look at websites relating to Christianity, Islam, Hinduism and other religions but blocks sites to do with “witchcraft or Satanism” and “occult practices, atheistic views, voodoo rituals or any other form of mysticism”.

As Prof. Myers notes:

I’m always peeved at this inconsistent categorization. If you’re going to group undesirable topics under the heading of “Forms of mysticism”, then atheism does not belong there, but Christianity and Islam do, right along with witchcraft, the occult, voodoo, and New Age nonsense.

Personally, I’d note that this is the UK, and what else can you expect from a country that still has an established church?


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