The election of 37-year-old Muslim Humza Yousaf as Scotland National Party (SNP) leader and First Minister of Scotland has been greeted with trepidation by pro-life supporters and the Christian community.
Scottish evangelist and Christian commentator David Robertson from the Sydney-based ASK Project notes that Mr. Yousaf is in favour of decriminalising all abortions up to full-term including sex selective terminations.
He is hoping to pass that bill during his first term as SNP leader in the Scottish parliament.
Under the current law abortion is a crime in Scotland but exemptions allow it to be available on request up to 24 weeks gestation.
Mr. Robertson warns in a Christian Today article that Christians should be more worried about Mr. Yousaf’s ideology than his faith.
“Islam is his cultural religion; he ignores it when it goes against his real religion – progressivism. We should be concerned because of his authoritarian tendencies, fuelled by his ideology and his sense of ‘the right to rule’ that comes from his privileged upbringing,” he writes.
He points out that as Justice Minister, the new Scottish leader introduced “one of the most authoritarian, Orwellian pieces of legislation ever passed by a Western democracy.”
Mr. Robertson believes that this ‘hate crime bill’ is a real threat to freedom of speech and freedom of religion which even criminalises people for private conversations they have in their own home.
The commentator writes that former SNP deputy leader Jim Sillars described it as being “one of the most pernicious and dangerous pieces of legislation ever produced by any government in modern times in any part of the United Kingdom”.
He adds that Scots should also be concerned about the impact of Mr. Yousaf’s “policies on the poor (a failing economy and weakened health service always impact the poor the worst); women (his gender recognition bill is deeply unpopular in Scotland and will have a real adverse effect on women and children – not least putting men in women’s prisons); and children (the decline of the Scottish education system in a land once known for its literacy has been horrific – as has the decline of the family).”
Mr. Robertson observes that despite the SNP standing for Scottish independence, that’s unlikely to happen in the next decade.
He also notes that the SNP membership has fallen to 72,000, of whom only 50,000 voted in the election for party leader.
Mr. Yousaf only narrowly beat his Evangelical Christian rival Kate Forbes by 52% to 48% to take the top job in Scotland.
Mr. Robertson concludes in Christian Today that is not as encouraging as it appears.
“I suspect that the main political parties (including the so-called ‘conservative’ ones) will ensure that no one like her [Kate Forbes] gets near power again. This was too close a call for the progressive establishment. Yousaf during his campaign, in a thinly veiled threat, suggested that the SNP needed to vet candidates more closely so that those with ‘unacceptable’ views could not get elected.”
Ms. Forbes who was Finance Secretary in the previous Scotland government will return to the backbench after rejecting Mr. Yousaf’s offer of the Rural Affairs portfolio.