[…]

If you’re none too thrilled with the fact that millions of pounds of our money is being spent on the Pope’s state visit to the UK next week (16-19 September) – not to mention the untold suffering inflicted by papal policies and influence across the globe – you may like to join the National Secular Society, OutRage!, Southall Black Sisters and others at the Protest the Pope march and rally on Saturday 18 September:

1.30pm – Assembly at Hyde Park Corner (top of Piccadilly)

2.30pm – 3.30pm – March: Piccadilly, Piccadilly Circus, Haymarket, Trafalgar Square, Whitehall

3.30pm – Rally opposite Downing Street, with speakers including Pragna Patel, Richard Dawkins, Clara Connolly and Ben Goldacre.

The organisers charge the Pope with:

1. Opposing the distribution of condoms and so increasing large families in poor countries and the spread of AIDS*

2. Promoting segregated education

3. Denying abortion to even the most vulnerable women

4. Opposing equal rights for lesbians, gay, bisexual and transgender people

5. Failing to address the many cases of abuse of children within its own organisation.

6. Rehabilitating the holocaust denier bishop Richard Williamson and the appeaser of Hitler, the war-time Pope, Pius XII.

More details here. Facebook event here.

There’s also a Nope Pope party taking place in London on Friday 17th September to raise money for SNAP, the Survivors Network for those Abused by Priests.

Photo by anemoneprojectors, shared under a Creative Commons Licence.

*Can I just say I think this is rather poorly worded – people in poor countries have the right to large families too – but the text goes on to explain that an estimated 1.5 million children have been orphaned due to AIDS, and clearly women should be able to control when they have a family and how large that family will be.