Sometimes I have a moment of reflection about how I tend to make a lot of commentary on theism and religion and wonder why I feel so compelled to do so.
For in the UK, the issue of God's existence and what she actually wants if she does existent, barely seems to break the fabric of society at all. Even when people do manage to get their knickers in a twist, like the Daily Mail readers who followed Shirley Chappell's plight to be allowed to wear a crucifix chain in her nursing job, they don't care any further than tutting over their breakfast cereal.
Unlike in America, where huge groups of people can father together under one religious message, I'd be surprised if you could result find a parade of Britons who could passionately agree on their religion's stance on any social issue. And I say 'passionately' purposefully, because even when people can agree on something, they often won't regard that viewpoint as particularly important.
'Are gay marriages right with God?'; 'would god be annoyed if we clone humans?'; 'is there a heaven and hell?'. A lot of us British folk, believers or not, jusy don't care about these questions.
And I don't speak for all churches, but a lot of the ones I've been to exist more as a community and social lecture than a reinforcement of ancient dogma. Though the old stories, prayers and parables are stol recited, of course.
So, my question to myself is: why do I find out necessary to argue, commentate and satirise something that is almost negligible in my home kingdom? I may as well be talking about astrology, frankly. I haven't done the research, but the belief system around astrology seems pretty similar. "Yeah, I think its true, maybe, probably. Can we talk able something else?"
Firstly, the fact that the internet gives me a potentially global audience (most of our comic readers are from the theistically troubled US) means that anything I have to say on religion isn't entirely for a stagnant audience. The whole Gnu Atheism thing is really a euphemism for the re-energised social religious conflict America its going through at the moment.
Bit I would say the main reason I continue to cover religion (other than that I find it fascinating) its that the UK is in that sleepy period between the acceptance of an idea and its dismissal. Much like alternative medicines, religion is waved away wishy-washily as if it's fine to let everyone get on with it and annoying to address. We all suspect it's a bit of nonsense but best to let sleeping dogs lie than bother to think about the issue a little deeper.
Which is fine, in a way: everyone is entitled to their own beliefs. And like dormant volcanoes, the whole lot may go extinct, given time. Or, more dangerously, if we let it sit quietly it could become part of the furniture; something to be cherished, like grandma's old chez long. When that happens, you'll find people getting all protective over 'tradition' and 'custom'.
Or we could push to raise people's consciousness one last time just to make them realise how ridiculous the whole concept of theistic religion is. Something too silly to take seriously.
Also, it's really easy to make jokes and comics about God. That's another reason.