Government accused of victimising single mums
A Scottish church leader has launched a scathing attack on the UK Government's treatment of single mums.
The former moderator of the Free Church of Scotland, the Reverend Dr Iain D Campbell said teenage single mums were an especially easy target.
The Government has been criticised because of the impact of child benefit cuts on single parents in particular, as child benefit accounts for a larger proportion of their overall income.
Dr Campbell accused the Government of confusing the symptoms of social breakdown with the causes, and suggested Britain needed to return to biblical values.
"The fact that teenagers become pregnant is not a problem to be solved, but a symptom of a much deeper problem. And it is not one that can be easily addressed or solved simply by papering over the fissures in our society," he said.
"While others may be looking for political solutions to tidy up the social mess of modern Britain, the reality is that we are a morally bankrupt nation.
"Religion has been marginalised and biblical Christianity virtually outlawed. We make white what the Bible makes black.
"We legislate for things that God forbids. And then we wonder why we are in the mess we are in."
Dr Campbell went on to say that teenage mothers should be "supported, not victimised".
"Their babies need to be born, not aborted," he said.
This means strengthening support networks for teenage mothers and helping them create a suitable home environment for their child, he said.
Dr Campbell went on to express concern for future generations of children growing up without a Christian foundation.
"Life, marriage, work, Sabbath – these are holy institutions. Tamper with any of them and the social fabric begins to unravel.
"It really is a sobering thought: in what kind of world will the next generation grow up? One in which there is no day to rest and worship, in which there are no parameters to life and relationships, in which there are few standards?
"One in which all our children will have all the latest gadgetry and technology, but no real friends with whom they can communicate face to face? One in which we shall know the value of nothing?"
He concluded: "We accept so easily what we read in newspapers and magazines, yet find it so difficult to accept what the Bible actually says.
"If we persist in downgrading and re-writing the Bible story, until there is no story left, we cannot wonder at national leaders who are prepared to target the most vulnerable, or at a generation growing up without structure or direction.
"Maybe the story of Mary and the holy family are more pertinent to the needs of our contemporary than we care to realise or admit."