Letter: Moral values do not have to be God-given

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The Independent Online
Sir: The Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr George Carey, demands that political practice and the law in Britain reflect Christian beliefs ('Carey gives full support to Durham's bishop-elect', 8 October). Does he not know that the healthy democratic state cannot discriminate between its citizens on the basis of their religious beliefs?

Furthermore, he repeats his divisive view that people must believe in God to be moral. People of goodwill, whether they believe in God-given values or values derived from human experience, are working well together to mitigate the current problems in society.

Behaviour is influenced far more by the security and coherence of personal beliefs and values than by their reported source. I invite the Archbishop to concentrate on our shared values as a common strength, and use the resources of the Church to work for the health of all in this culturally rich country.

Yours faithfully,

JOHN LEESON

Chair

British Humanist Association

London, WC1

9 October

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