Home

The French Republic and "papolatrie"

8 April 2005

A new sin has sprung up in France: "papolatrie", or pope worship. Today's IHT describes the debate sparked by the government marking the pope's death.

"The government is giving the impression that it is an advocate for one religion, and that religion is Catholicism. And that's an abuse of power," argues Yves Contassot of France's Green Party.

62% of French people describe themselves as Catholic, the article notes, "but the country also is struggling to shore up its secular identity after banning religious symbols from schools, including Muslim headscarves, Jewish yarmulkes and large Christian crosses".

So is this blatant hypocrisy, as some claim? Here's what you said about the headscarf ban at the time, replying to a piece by our writer Dave Belden. And your discussion that accompanied our trio of articles on the subject.

How does the controversy surrounding papolatrie fit in? Discuss it here.

Our coverage of the headscarf ban:
France unveiled: making Muslims into citizens?, Johannes Willms
A nation in diversity: France, Muslims and the headscarf, Patrick Weil
Hijab hysteria: France and its Muslims, Svend White

Stop the secrecy: Publish the NHS COVID data deals


To: Matt Hancock, Secretary of State for Health and Social Care

We’re calling on you to immediately release details of the secret NHS data deals struck with private companies, to deliver the NHS COVID-19 datastore.

We, the public, deserve to know exactly how our personal information has been traded in this ‘unprecedented’ deal with US tech giants like Google, and firms linked to Donald Trump (Palantir) and Vote Leave (Faculty AI).

The COVID-19 datastore will hold private, personal information about every single one of us who relies on the NHS. We don’t want our personal data falling into the wrong hands.

And we don’t want private companies – many with poor reputations for protecting privacy – using it for their own commercial purposes, or to undermine the NHS.

The datastore could be an important tool in tackling the pandemic. But for it to be a success, the public has to be able to trust it.

Today, we urgently call on you to publish all the data-sharing agreements, data-impact assessments, and details of how the private companies stand to profit from their involvement.

The NHS is a precious public institution. Any involvement from private companies should be open to public scrutiny and debate. We need more transparency during this pandemic – not less.


By adding my name to this campaign, I authorise openDemocracy and Foxglove to keep me updated about their important work.

Had enough of ‘alternative facts’? openDemocracy is different Join the conversation: get our weekly email

Comments

We encourage anyone to comment, please consult the oD commenting guidelines if you have any questions.
Audio available Bookmark Check Language Close Comments Download Facebook Link Email Newsletter Newsletter Play Print Share Twitter Youtube Search Instagram WhatsApp yourData