Zeitgeist Magazine, for the story behind the news
Issue 31,
Volume 9,
23 December 302 AP

The Story
behind the news.
Edition
Cover
Zeitgeist of the year: Pedro Carmonte
Runners up: Roven's President and Finance Minister
Other key events this year

Business
Starlight's mistake
Kyle Langley: pro-unions?


Politics
Gov. Hope tours the south
"Pardon? There's a drought?"
Are the Burovians a spent force?


Law
The bitter fight over Savante's millions

International Gichadia: island paradise comes of age
The Moun's Front legacy
Pataki Communists refuse "dregs"
Castronovia: recog- nition or bust

Entertainment
Samsarini games
ICARA's Alphalpha 300 debacle


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©Mike Ham, 2002. All rights reserved. No reproduction without, at least, tacit approval. ;-)
History of the Insecularity Law

The concept of an insecularity law may be new to many readers, but it is thirty year old law in Lendosa, and state secularity is hundreds of years older than that.

For centuries, Lendosa had been a single-religion state, Veldanism, until Cruisianity seeped into the region, splitting the people religiously and creating an air of unease and disunity, and riots and internecine clashes became more and more common. Eventually, some six centuries ago, in order to avoid a full-scale civil war now that the Empire was evenly split, and with the full backing of the excluded Cruisians, the leadership declared that there would no longer be a state religion. The Veldanists were disenfranchised, and the state would evermore remain neutral in matters of religion: Lendosan state secularity was born.

While attempts had been made to subvert the law and reintroduce a state religion by Cruisians, at all times the Council, Imperial Council and Republican before it, squashed such moves. The nobility, too, found it more convenient to not associate directly with one religion or the other, and thus continued their entrenched position. The Churches, the Papaists particularly, cooperated with the state, in particular, the latter-day Emperors, with whom they formed a corrupt political influence peddling bargain. But all attempts to have the state protect or enshrine in law the Church's influence and power were rebuffed.

Thus, peace in the region was assured. And turning the practical guideline of state impartiality into a rigid, death-penalty inducing mandate would require the work of a particularly nefarious character. Unfortunately, such a character arrived in 234ap, when was Emperor Carigo "the Mad" ascended the throne. Emperors by Carigo's time had become little more than figureheads, divorced from the day-to-day running of the Lendian Empire, they were little more than advisors for the Imperial Council. Carigo altered this with the help of allies in the Panopticate, the Empire's shadowy intelligence agency, which began surreptitiously "disappearing" and murdering Councillors and other opponents of the Emperor. By 269ap, he was in complete control of the Empire, and all "modernisations" and political liberalisation were halted.

Naturally, opposition to the Emperor's coup grew, but opposition was not to be tolerated. Thousands were imprisoned. Thousands more would die under horrific purges against "rebel influences".

Amidst this calamity, the Papaist church slowly drew a voice, and became the de facto leader of popular (largely religious) dissent. Reports spread that the Papa, head of the Papaist Church, was planning to excommunicate the Emperor, and though nothing came of the reports, the suggestion alone infuriated Carigo. Dissenting Priests were arrested, jailed or killed, but the influence and power of the Church was far too large for the Emperor to ignore.

In 271ap, Carigo promptly sent his most loyal army commanders to launch a full-scale military assault on the Papa's residence. The entire Empire was stunned, no one expecting even he would go so far. Carigo then negotiated a treaty, known now as the Antario Accords, with the Papaist Church: It would stay out of politics, forever remaining politically neutral, never supporting nor commenting on the government, in exchange for peace.

The Church, not surprisingly, agreed.

The Insecularity law was also created, that ordered the execution of any government employee that showed any favouritism to the Church, indeed any religion.

However, by 275ap, the Panopticate's pro-Council members had retaken control, and the Imperial Council was restored to power, telling the Emperor to "sit down and shut-up", as one Councillor famously did. Numerous legislative changes reversed Carigo's reign of terror, including the removal of the death penalty for "Insecularity". However, the Council did not remove the law altogether. All were horrified that Carigo could have launched such a raid on the Church, yet many were not disappointed that the Church's power and influence had been curbed. Thus, the Insecularity law remained, and the Imperial Council continued to finance Carigo's propaganda campaign to curb the church.

Once the Empire collapsed, the new Senate of the Lendosan Confederation re-created the laws in their modern and even more moderate form, stating that no officer or representative of the church may comment on politics, and that the government would not show favour to any religion, faith or belief system.

It is this very law that a 44 year old Comparative Religion studies lecturer at the University of Asala would fall prey to, as had some 63 other people in the twelve months to last May.
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Zeitgeist of the Year (editorial)

The Carmonte Affair

History of the Insecularity law

The Church in Lendosa

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