The Giordano Bruno Stiftung presented its central campaign brochure "Abschied von der Kirchenrepublik: 100 Jahre Verfassungsbruch sind genug" ("Farewell to the Church Republic: 100 Years of Constitutional Breach are Enough") at the first press conference of the Secular Bus Campaign in Berlin today, Saturday. It features fundamental political demands that must be implemented in order to realize the constitutional imperative of the worlview neutral state.
In its policy paper, the foundation criticizes the fact that the old legal principle "In dubio pro libertate" ("In doubt for freedom") is all too often converted into an "In dubio pro ecclesia" ("In doubt for the church"). This is shown not only in the manifold privileges which the churches in Germany hold, but also in numerous laws which restrict the freedoms of the citizens on the basis of religious beliefs, even though this is strictly forbidden to the worldview neutral state.
In order to resolve these grievances, the Giordano Bruno Stiftung demands, among other things, the redemption of state benefits to the churches, the abolition of church tax collection via the employer, introduced in 1933, an end to church discrimination privileges in labour law, the consistent enforcement of the law applicable to all (also vis-à-vis religious communities!), the abolition of church dominance in public institutions, the introduction of "denomination-free schools", the inclusion of explicit children's rights in the constitution, and a fundamental reform of the laws on abortion and euthanasia. The brochure ends with an emphatic appeal to the consciences of German parliamentarians, who should make themselves aware that they do not have the right to elevate their private beliefs to the general norm of law that must be followed by dissenters.
With the secular bus campaign "Schlussmachen jetzt!", which will visit 25 German cities in the next three weeks, the demand for a consistent separation of church and state shall be spread in our society. The brochure "Abschied von der Kirchenrepublik" ("Farewell to the Church Republic") will be available both on the campaign bus and at the various evening events of the secular tour through Germany. An online version of the brochure can also be downloaded from the website of the Giordano Bruno Stiftung. The foundation also offers a special service for teachers and political disseminators: Anyone wishing to use the brochure in class or distribute it at educational events can order it directly from the foundation secretariat.
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