Nothing exercises the ire of British humanists and atheists more than religionists’ monopoly of the “Thought for the Day” slot on BBC Radio 4’s “Today” programme. Less than 4 minutes’ long, I have found on visiting Humanist groups around the UK that this irritates British secularists in the same way as Americans get hot under the collar about God on the dollar bill. So, complaints ensued when, on Boxing Day (26th December), a guest editor on the programme was prevented from allowing an atheist to broadcast in that slot (though a Unitarian was recruited instead, and the atheist spoke an hour earlier). But developing a Humanist strategy to deal with this longstanding ban requires some understanding of how the BBC bureaucracy has worked since it was founded in the 1920s.
The funeral seems to be dying in Canada. It is not just the case that the funeral is becoming less religious, but that the actual concept is fading. This is giving Canadian secularisation a distinctive hue, and points one way in which nations with rapid religious decline may develop.