BBC Campaign update and Jan demo

London Black Atheists and Manchester Humanists join campaign

Next demo: Tuesday 8 January from 4 – 6pm

The Thought for the Day campaign enters 2019 fighting fit. Both London Black Atheists and Manchester Humanists have actively joined the campaign. London Black Atheists (LBA) wrote the December letter to the BBC calling for change, while Manchester Humanists have stepped up their activity with a demo outside BBC HQ in Manchester’s Media City.

Audrey Simmons of LBA was there at the London demo on 11 December to hand in the letter to BBC chiefs Tony Hall, James Purnell and Sarah Sands. It says: “Britain is rightly praised for the rich diversity of its population…Thought for the Day flies in the face of this diversity and inclusiveness…When we consider that over half the population of Britain are non-religious, then the most natural thought is, how are non-religious perspectives to be catered for? They need to see their views reflected and developed in the mainstream philosophical, ethical and belief programmes of the day.”

Manchester Humanists were out on 18 December with banners and placards, handing out flyers and talking the public.

Organiser Graham Connell says: “Many of the passersby, including BBC staff, expressed agreement with the campaign. Among those demonstrating was Hamza bin Walayat, who earlier this year came to notice in the national press because he was denied asylum – for the absurd reason that he could not identify famous Greek philosophers who were humanistic.”

In other news, Humanists UK’s Richy Thompson has made an excellent response to the BBC’s Editorial Guidelines consultation which summarises why TFTD is the tip of an iceberg, illustrating a BBC-wide policy that privileges religion and freezes out humanism. All the ammunition you need is there.

Our next demo is back to the afternoon slot of 4-6pm on Tuesday 8 Jan, outside Broadcasting House. Wrap up warm, pick up a hot chocolate from Broadcasting House’s Caffe Nero and join us.