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The failure of the BHA.

Any topics that are primarily about humanism or other non-religious life stances fit in here.
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Stark
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Re: The failure of the BHA.

#21 Postby Stark » January 23rd, 2017, 7:31 pm

Latest post of the previous page:

The British Horse-racing Authority comes up first? It's almost as if the rankings reflect where the money is. :D I appreciate how frustrated you are Paul, but for many, those reasons you give are precisely why they pay their membership of the BHA. Having heard several of its staff speaking (and I'm hearing Andrew Copson again tomorrow) they are enormously effective voices against religious privilege and in promotion of Humanism (the latter being the subject of tomorrow's talk)

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Alan H
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Re: The failure of the BHA.

#22 Postby Alan H » January 23rd, 2017, 8:17 pm

Paul Smith wrote:I pay my membership, but only because of the services the BHA offers for births, marriages and funerals.
I do have to wonder why you still give them money...particularly when BHA ceremonies are not subsidised by the BHA and you don't need to be a member to avail yourself of the services of a celebrant...

It's significant that if you type BHA into Google, the British Horseracing Authority comes first. A staggering 52% of the population are non-religious, yet the horse BHA, which is of interest to less than 1%, gets more views than us.
The total attendances at flat and jump events in 2014 (ie those who turn up at racecources and not including those who watch at home or the betting shop or in pubs) was 5,595,342, so it has quite a following. But why would anyone search for bha on its own and what does it matter that the horse-racers come first - do you think anyone will be confused by that? Anyway, if you search for humanism in a clean browser window, the BHA comes up first.

The BHA should hang its head in shame - or rather the trustees. It amounts to a massive business failure.
You keep repeating yourself...

People join an organisation if they get a benefit from it.
Well, that's one possible reason; one of many.

Who wants to join an organisation which says, "We will really improve your life by getting rid of the bishops in the House of Lords! We will really improve your life by reducing the privileges of the clergy! We will really improve your life by stopping creationism being taught in the very few schools that teach it! No wonder more people look up the horse BHA.
Quite a few, it seems. But if it's not for you, why do you continue to be a member?

The BHA needs to junk all its present campaigns, leave them to the NSS who do a better job of them, and have a complete change of strategy to show people that humanism, which is a way of life, is the best way of life there is.
Perhaps there's a marketing opening for you to plug?

But please don't forget my previous question to you about your claims about the BHA and NSS campaigns.
Alan Henness

There are three fundamental questions for anyone advocating Brexit:

1. What, precisely, are the significant and tangible benefits of leaving the EU?
2. What damage to the UK and its citizens is an acceptable price to pay for those benefits?
3. Which ruling of the ECJ is most persuasive of the need to leave its jurisdiction?

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Nick
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Re: The failure of the BHA.

#23 Postby Nick » January 23rd, 2017, 11:13 pm

Paul Smith wrote:I pay my membership, but only because of the services the BHA offers for births, marriages and funerals.
Though (for once!) I don't see the BHA's progress in this area in business terms, humanist marriage and funeral ceremonies are growing apace. Baby namings, less so, but baptisms are in decline too.

It's significant that if you type BHA into Google, the British Horseracing Authority comes first. A staggering 52% of the population are non-religious, yet the horse BHA, which is of interest to less than 1%, gets more views than us.
But let's compare those two things. Remembering the atheist bus campaign, most non-believers just get on with their lives, in a non-believing sort of way. They don't feel the need to band together to do so. I don't feel the need to join a society for those who don't believe in fairies at the bottom of the garden. But as a rugby fan (as it happens) I readily associate myself with the 6 Nations tournament, run by the RFU, because that is ne way rugby manifests itself in our society. These things are not the same.
The BHA should hang its head in shame - or rather the trustees. It amounts to a massive business failure. People join an organisation if they get a benefit from it.
Hmmmm.... I'm a member of the BHA, and have been active too, on and off, but I do it because I think society would be better off without falsehood being promulgated by the religions, which, besides being a bad thing in their outcomes, are just not true. I think that matters.

Who wants to join an organisation which says, "We will really improve your life by getting rid of the bishops in the House of Lords! We will really improve your life by reducing the privileges of the clergy! We will really improve your life by stopping creationism being taught in the very few schools that teach it!
Those of us who think that 1) Giving religious leaders power, ex-officio, is detrimental to the pursuit of reason. 2) The clergy are trying to persuade people to believe in nonsense (even though I do think they are well meaning) and 3) that teaching creationism is a false education for those children concerned. In just the same way that teaching that the moon is made of cream cheese is false.

The BHA needs to junk all its present campaigns, leave them to the NSS who do a better job of them, and have a complete change of strategy to show people that humanism, which is a way of life, is the best way of life there is.


Hmmm... and what sort of definition would you use for humanism in such circumstances? "Be nice to people"? And people would pay subs for that? Hmmm... I have my ddoubts, but if you think it will work, give it a whirl.

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Re: The failure of the BHA.

#24 Postby Paul Smith » January 24th, 2017, 7:26 pm

Another reason why the trustees of the BHA have failed is the total lack of appeal which humanism (as promoted by the BHA) has to women.

How much of the membership is female? I bet it's less than 10%. Does anybody know? Or is it a big secret?

When the BHA campaigns aggressively oppose the churches, no wonder women are turned off from joining.

The trustees are so influenced by the 'we hate all religion' NSS that they can't see that humanism as a way of life should be regarded as on a par with Christianity, Judaism, Islam and Hinduism.

Instead, it's viewed as just a tiny anti-religious sect. The trustees should hang their heads in shame.

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Alan H
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Re: The failure of the BHA.

#25 Postby Alan H » January 24th, 2017, 7:34 pm

Paul Smith wrote:Another reason why the trustees of the BHA have failed is the total lack of appeal which humanism (as promoted by the BHA) has to women.

How much of the membership is female? I bet it's less than 10%. Does anybody know? Or is it a big secret?

When the BHA campaigns aggressively oppose the churches, no wonder women are turned off from joining.

The trustees are so influenced by the 'we hate all religion' NSS that they can't see that humanism as a way of life should be regarded as on a par with Christianity, Judaism, Islam and Hinduism.

Instead, it's viewed as just a tiny anti-religious sect. The trustees should hang their heads in shame.
:yawn:
Alan Henness

There are three fundamental questions for anyone advocating Brexit:

1. What, precisely, are the significant and tangible benefits of leaving the EU?
2. What damage to the UK and its citizens is an acceptable price to pay for those benefits?
3. Which ruling of the ECJ is most persuasive of the need to leave its jurisdiction?

Stark
Posts: 69
Joined: July 5th, 2007, 12:34 pm

Re: The failure of the BHA.

#26 Postby Stark » January 25th, 2017, 9:20 am

Paul Smith wrote:How much of the membership is female? I bet it's less than 10%. Does anybody know? Or is it a big secret?


No, it's not a big secret, yes, somebody knows and you've lost your bet - in 2014 it was 35%. See A Profile of the Members of the British Humanist Association
http://smithandfranklin.com/current-issues/A-Profile-of-the-Members-of-the-British-Humanist-Association/9/16/122/html

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Tetenterre
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Re: The failure of the BHA.

#27 Postby Tetenterre » January 25th, 2017, 10:27 pm

Paul Smith wrote: People join an organisation if they get a benefit from it.
That's probably true of some people. However, it is also the case that some of us join organisations merely because we support their aims and objectives, without expecting a "benefit" in addition to that.

Another reason why the trustees of the BHA have failed is the total lack of appeal which humanism (as promoted by the BHA) has to women.
How much of the membership is female? I bet it's less than 10%.
Oh, you're defintiely right there. It's a badly kept secret that humanists like Polly Toynbee and Alice Roberts are actually blokes in drag, as are at least 80% of the other 35-ish % of BHA members that self-identify as female.

The trustees are so influenced by the 'we hate all religion' NSS...
It's just terrible isn't it! Just look at how poor Andrew Copson was forced at gunpoint - yes, gunpoint! - to acknowledge the positive contributions of religious people on BBCTBQ last Sunday.

that they can't see that humanism as a way of life should be regarded as on a par with Christianity, Judaism, Islam and Hinduism.
Absolutely not! Heck, if we believed that, we'd be lobbying for representation on TFTD, etc. Heaven forbid!

/s (just in case)
Steve

Quantum Theory: The branch of science with which people who know absolutely sod all about quantum theory can explain anything.

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Tetenterre
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Re: The failure of the BHA.

#28 Postby Tetenterre » January 25th, 2017, 10:28 pm

. Error; please delete
Steve

Quantum Theory: The branch of science with which people who know absolutely sod all about quantum theory can explain anything.

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animist
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Re: The failure of the BHA.

#29 Postby animist » January 26th, 2017, 10:28 am

this thread is confirming my belief that there is not really anything called humanism. There is secularism, there is atheism and there is humanitarianism, all of which have reasonably definable properties and are IMO good things to follow, but humanism - no

Paul Smith
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Re: The failure of the BHA.

#30 Postby Paul Smith » January 26th, 2017, 8:08 pm

The failure of the BHA can be seen by the number of people who know what humanism is. If you ask people in the street, (52% of whom are non-religious), less than 1% will be able to tell you.

An incredible failure of strategic management.

Bashing the churches? Oh yes, we like that. Telling people in simple terms what humanism is? Oh no, it's much more important to bash the churches. But people won't join the BHA if they don't know what humanism is, so telling people what it is in very simple terms must be top priority. Oh no, we BHA trustees are all NSS members and we much prefer church-bashing.

Stark
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Re: The failure of the BHA.

#31 Postby Stark » January 26th, 2017, 8:26 pm

Paul Smith wrote:The failure of the BHA can be seen by the number of people who know what humanism is. If you ask people in the street, (52% of whom are non-religious), less than 1% will be able to tell you


Where does this figure of less than 1% come from?

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Alan H
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Re: The failure of the BHA.

#32 Postby Alan H » January 26th, 2017, 9:42 pm

Paul Smith wrote:The failure of the BHA can be seen by the number of people who know what humanism is. If you ask people in the street, (52% of whom are non-religious), less than 1% will be able to tell you.

An incredible failure of strategic management.

Bashing the churches? Oh yes, we like that. Telling people in simple terms what humanism is? Oh no, it's much more important to bash the churches. But people won't join the BHA if they don't know what humanism is, so telling people what it is in very simple terms must be top priority. Oh no, we BHA trustees are all NSS members and we much prefer church-bashing.
Good grief.
Alan Henness

There are three fundamental questions for anyone advocating Brexit:

1. What, precisely, are the significant and tangible benefits of leaving the EU?
2. What damage to the UK and its citizens is an acceptable price to pay for those benefits?
3. Which ruling of the ECJ is most persuasive of the need to leave its jurisdiction?

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animist
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Re: The failure of the BHA.

#33 Postby animist » January 28th, 2017, 10:52 am

Stark wrote:
Paul Smith wrote:The failure of the BHA can be seen by the number of people who know what humanism is. If you ask people in the street, (52% of whom are non-religious), less than 1% will be able to tell you


Where does this figure of less than 1% come from?
I don't really want to get into this, but my scepticism about the very existence of humanism is increased by Paul's claim, dubious as it may be statistically. There was a pretty silly "quiz" on Facebook about how much of a humanist you are, and it was clear that people (including quite intelligent ones) don't really know what it is: they tend to confuse it with humanitarianism. Humanism, if there is such a thing, is surely nothing if not determinedly secularist, and therefore what Paul calls "church bashing" seems IMO to be quite appropriate

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Re: The failure of the BHA.

#34 Postby Paul Smith » January 28th, 2017, 1:35 pm

What we want is for the Church of England to attack the humanist movement, to try to reduce our influence, to tell its supporters to write to their MPs to say that no humanists should be in Parliament, that humanism should not be taught in schools. Then humanists would be offended, become angry, and become much more committed to the cause.

OH MY GOD! That's exactly what the BHA do to the Church of England! The bishops are delighted! We do exactly what they want.

The churches know what they are doing. They leave us alone, ignore us, trying instead to get new members. They know that they get more respect, and so influence with the Government, if they are tolerant to all other world views.

But the dimwits who run the BHA are so thick they don't realise this. Church bashing is a major strategic blunder. It keeps our movement tiny in numbers, because few people want to join a church-bashing sect, considering such actions to be unpleasant and uncalled for. The influence of the NSS on the BHA is malign.

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Alan H
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Re: The failure of the BHA.

#35 Postby Alan H » January 28th, 2017, 2:07 pm

Paul Smith wrote:What we want is for the Church of England to attack the humanist movement, to try to reduce our influence, to tell its supporters to write to their MPs to say that no humanists should be in Parliament, that humanism should not be taught in schools. Then humanists would be offended, become angry, and become much more committed to the cause.

OH MY GOD! That's exactly what the BHA do to the Church of England! The bishops are delighted! We do exactly what they want.

The churches know what they are doing. They leave us alone, ignore us, trying instead to get new members. They know that they get more respect, and so influence with the Government, if they are tolerant to all other world views.

But the dimwits who run the BHA are so thick they don't realise this. Church bashing is a major strategic blunder. It keeps our movement tiny in numbers, because few people want to join a church-bashing sect, considering such actions to be unpleasant and uncalled for. The influence of the NSS on the BHA is malign.
Yet you're still a member of the BHA...
Alan Henness

There are three fundamental questions for anyone advocating Brexit:

1. What, precisely, are the significant and tangible benefits of leaving the EU?
2. What damage to the UK and its citizens is an acceptable price to pay for those benefits?
3. Which ruling of the ECJ is most persuasive of the need to leave its jurisdiction?

Stark
Posts: 69
Joined: July 5th, 2007, 12:34 pm

Re: The failure of the BHA.

#36 Postby Stark » January 28th, 2017, 3:15 pm

Paul Smith wrote:What we want is for the Church of England to attack the humanist movement, to try to reduce our influence, to tell its supporters to write to their MPs to say that no humanists should be in Parliament, that humanism should not be taught in schools. Then humanists would be offended, become angry, and become much more committed to the cause.


I'll think you'll find the CofE is already doing that - which is why, for instance, the BHA is having such a battle getting Humanism taught in schools, and why many non-religious people join the BHA

Paul Smith wrote:It keeps our movement tiny in numbers, because few people want to join a church-bashing sect, considering such actions to be unpleasant and uncalled for.


Uncalled for? I suspect members of the LGBT community, or women who want control of their reproductive health (especially those living in Northern Ireland) might disagree with you.

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coffee
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Re: The failure of the BHA.

#37 Postby coffee » January 28th, 2017, 6:49 pm

This is what churches offer:

love
forgiveness
generiousity
kind
compassion
good social gathering
trust
a community to look out for you or support you if you going through hard time (a good security compare to the harsh outside world)
doing good together is feeling good
feeling of solidarity/fellowship
the music/the choir is great fun
a good listening ears
the communion strengthen bond within the community
leadership training

What has the BHA have to offer?

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Alan H
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Re: The failure of the BHA.

#38 Postby Alan H » January 28th, 2017, 7:03 pm

coffee wrote:This is what churches offer:

love
forgiveness
generiousity
kind
compassion
good social gathering
trust
a community to look out for you or support you if you going through hard time (a good security compare to the harsh outside world)
doing good together is feeling good
feeling of solidarity/fellowship
the music/the choir is great fun
a good listening ears
the communion strengthen bond within the community
leadership training

What has the BHA have to offer?
Are you confusing what groups of members of the Church of England, etc offer with what the Church of England as an organisation offers? Do groups of members of BHA groups offer those things?
Alan Henness

There are three fundamental questions for anyone advocating Brexit:

1. What, precisely, are the significant and tangible benefits of leaving the EU?
2. What damage to the UK and its citizens is an acceptable price to pay for those benefits?
3. Which ruling of the ECJ is most persuasive of the need to leave its jurisdiction?

Stark
Posts: 69
Joined: July 5th, 2007, 12:34 pm

Re: The failure of the BHA.

#39 Postby Stark » January 28th, 2017, 7:08 pm

Alan H wrote:Do groups of members of BHA groups offer those things?

Based on my experience, yes they can

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coffee
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Re: The failure of the BHA.

#40 Postby coffee » January 28th, 2017, 7:33 pm

>>Based on my experience, yes they can<<

No where on the BHA website said that.


I want to know exactly what the bha doing or their values are written down on their website so that I don't have to guess what they believe or doing or not doing. Right now that is not happening. Or are the one that I am not interested in eg churches bashing

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Alan H
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Re: The failure of the BHA.

#41 Postby Alan H » January 28th, 2017, 8:38 pm

coffee wrote:>>Based on my experience, yes they can<<

No where on the BHA website said that.


I want to know exactly what the bha doing or their values are written down on their website so that I don't have to guess what they believe or doing or not doing. Right now that is not happening. Or are the one that I am not interested in eg churches bashing
It appears to me there is still confusion between what the BHA does and what, for example, local groups do - and what other humanists do. The BHA doesn't need to oversee this, provide guidelines for this or provide any quality control. The CofE may well do that, but that's up to them. So I'm still sure any case has been made for a failure of the BHA in any of this.
Alan Henness

There are three fundamental questions for anyone advocating Brexit:

1. What, precisely, are the significant and tangible benefits of leaving the EU?
2. What damage to the UK and its citizens is an acceptable price to pay for those benefits?
3. Which ruling of the ECJ is most persuasive of the need to leave its jurisdiction?


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