Glastonbury Abbey is a pile of old bricks. At night it can be extremely spooky indeed. So, it's an ideal backdrop for an interview about a spooky film.
However, the site means a lot to those who are Christian and using it to promote a film about witchcraft is going to upset them. That's obvious, it would be like advertising pork pies in a mosque or a synagogue. Therefore it's no surprise to find that the custodians of Glastonbury Abbey have apologised to Christians - presumably those on whom the custodians depend for routine income rather than occasional Hollywood income - for annoying them. Ignoring things that upset your core support group is no way to stay in charge.
None of those things would bother me at all but then I don't follow any religion so I have no holy sites or sacred places. I wouldn't be even slightly ruffled by hearing about a Sikh ceremony in Westminster Cathedral or a Buddhist celebration in every mosque in the land. The religious would be incensed but it wouldn't trouble me, and none of those who run those religious places would care about my thoughts on the matter because there is no chance of any support, moral or financial, from me anyway.
I don't care that much of the meat on sale in the UK is Halal. I eat meat. To achieve that end, something has to die. There's no point getting all precious about how it dies, it's going to die, have its skin ripped off, its intestines torn out and then chopped into bits and cooked. And yes, I have done this to living things and then eaten them. I am neither proud nor ashamed of it, it is just the way real life works. There are many animals in the world who would do the same to me. Torturing animals to death is sick and disgusting, anyone with an ounce of humanity wants the act of killing to be as swift as possible but the fact remains that if you want to eat meat, the animal has to die first. Unless it's oysters.
Halal is just a method of killing. It doesn't change the meat, it doesn't make it any more dead, and eating it won't fill you with the urge to grow a beard and blow something up.
It is very, very easy to avoid Halal meat when eating out. Order pork. If they don't sell pork products, eat somewhere else. Personally, if I was in the mood for a bacon roll, I'd go to places where I know I can get one and avoid places where I knew I wouldn't. It doesn't seem much of a chore to me. I know several places that produce fantastic bacon rolls. If they sell pork, they aren't Halal no matter where they source their meat.
So Halal doesn't annoy me, but it does annoy an awful lot of people. It annoys those of other faiths who don't want their food blessed by a god they don't believe in. It annoys many, many people who find the idea of killing an animal by slitting its throat barbaric and offensive. To find that they have been eating such meat without being aware of it is... well, imagine how a Muslim would feel on finishing a curry, to be told that it was pork. That's pretty much the feeling.
It's a feeling that the Righteous selectively ignore. If a Muslim were fed pork without knowing, the Righteous would be enraged. When non-Muslims are given Halal without knowing, the Righteous adopt their best sneering tone and call the non-Muslim 'Islamophobe'. And then wonder why so many vote BNP.
The superior attitude of the Righteous is now visible everywhere. Counting Cats finds them in a housing committee. They are everywhere in antismoking, and Dick Puddlecote points out their lack of interest in the people they damage.
If you are not behaving in the prescribed manner, if you dare to live your life outside the dictates of the Righteous, if you point out the ever-present fallacies in their arguments, then they simply discount you as a person. In their minds, you cease to exist. Object to Halal? Islamophobe. Dismissed. Smoke, drink or eat the wrong foods? Dismissed. Wrong waist size? Dismissed. Object to uncontrolled immigration and free handouts for those who can't be bothered working? Racist and elitist. Dismissed.
Glastonbury's curators did not dismiss the concerns of their core supporters. They apologised for their actions, to the people who they depend on. That allows the matter to be forgotten.
Counting Cats' mother did not get an apology from the Righteous who think they are in charge of her housing block. They were only concerned that they had been caught acting like spoilt infants. Those on whom they depend for their existence are mere cattle to them. A career in British government surely awaits them.
What the Righteous forget is that those they dismiss from their own reality do not cease to exist in real reality. They can still vote, and they are likely to vote for people who are similarly dismissed.
Sweden has just discovered this, as twenty seats in their Parliament are now occupied by their version of the BNP. Before this election they had none. Now they have twenty. That's quite a swing. Their principal aim is to control Sweden's immigration, yet their success is because...
The rise of the right, meanwhile, was put down to a significant increase in the unemployed, whose numbers have risen during the global economic crisis.
Ah, of course, it's all about the recession.
The Democrats have a strong base in the south of Sweden, where many residents feel overrun.
Overrun by unemployment, or by...
Umea University expert Svante Ersson said Sweden Democrat voters were often young men who felt ignored by society.
'They don't necessarily have to be xenophobic - it could be a way to make a statement against the establishment,' said Ersson.
Yes, it's just a 'statement against the establishment'. Nothing to do with any grievances those voters might have, merely a 'statement'. A statement that put twenty members of a previously MP-less party on the seats of Parliament. Well, the rest of those MPs will just have to get used to it.
Despite denials they are racist, both main blocs have ruled out working with them.
Sweden's Parliament intends to ignore twenty of its people's elected representatives. The people voted for the wrong ones, it was just a 'statement', they didn't mean it. I wouldn't be surprised to find they have to have another election, before which they are told to get it right this time. It's the new democracy. EU-style. Yes, you have a vote, and you'll continue to have a vote over and over again until you get it right.
The concerns that led to twenty anti-immigration MPs? Dismissed. The wishes of those people who elected those twenty MPs? Dismissed. Brushed aside as 'protest voting'. What are they protesting about? Nobody in power cares. The cattle voted the wrong passengers onto the gravy train, that's all they are concerned about.
In Righteous eyes, democracy only works if we vote for the right candidates. If we vote in one they don't like, well the error is ours, not theirs. They are always right.
The cracks in Righteous reality are widening. In America, for the Tea Party, a Mad Hatter who believes science has cross-bred mice and humans has won one of their pre-election elections. That's going to worry the dormouse. In Sweden, the ex-skinheads are winning seats. Everywhere, all those people denounced as 'far right' are voting for candidates denounced as 'far right'. Who'd have thought that would happen? Who would have thought that all those people dismissed as subhuman by the Righteous would go and vote for other people dismissed as subhuman by those same Righteous?
Oh, but it can't happen here.
Just as they said in Sweden, only last week.