‘Anti-racism’ legislation naively embraces the politically correct notion that all religion and culture is ‘equal’ (i.e. the same). Then came 9/11, 7/7; the murder of Lee Rigby; and ISIS, which tested this assumption. But why is it now becoming clear that the assumption itself – is racist.
The EU Court of Human Rights developed the notion of five “equalities” – race, religion, gender, age and sexual orientation.
But it’s bizarre that these ‘equalities’ have been popularly extended to ‘religion’ and ‘culture’. Since the 80s and 90s we have been, what the BBC called ‘institutionally timid’, which encouraged ‘hate preachers’ such as Abu Hamza and Anjem Choudary to take advantage by staying under the legal radar, giving rise to the nick-name “Londonistan” as Islamist doctrine was incubated in the, so called, ‘mother of democracies’.
However, I’m encouraged that we are now rowing away from the naïve notion that all expressions of ‘religion’ and ‘culture’ are as valid as each other. Islamism is not a valid (or civilised) position. Yet ‘Hook-handed Hamza’ famously said: “We will use democracy to destroy democracy” because he was aware of democracy’s soft under-belly.
Britain had to change its mind about the politically correct mantra about cultures being the same, and there is growing support for, what David Cameron called: ‘robust democracy’. I say this because, following the (eventual) imprisonment of the Islamist Anjem Choudary (a trained lawyer), Justice Secretary Liz Truss MP has announced new measures to combat radicalism in British prisons:
i) internal isolation units for radicals
ii) anti-radicalisation training for prison officers
iii) tackling the fear of being thought culturally insensitive or racist
iv) isolation of Islamic extremists in units within prisons
v) chaplains undergo closer scrutiny
vi) people showing signs of extremism withdrawn from Friday prayers
vii) vetting of prison library books
Islam is a religion not a race
Islam is a ‘religion’ not a ‘race’; so it’s not racist to challenge an ideology, even when derived from a religion. Upholding national values is responsible citizenship, so neither can it be racist to prosecute a non-Anglo-Saxon for criminal violation of social norms. It’s ironic to see some people protesting against British freedoms, while tens of thousands of their compatriots are fleeing the raw savagery of the very ideology these British citizens are espousing.
Perhaps it’s easier for me (as a non-Caucasian) to ask what could be done if a Muslim heritage person needs something that regular westerners take for granted – such as:
- the need to learn English
- assisting house-bound women who want to enter the world of work
- protection from forced marriage
- protection from honour punishment
Treating all cultures as the same – racist?
Anti-racist legislation tends to conceal the difference that religion makes in people’s lives. It will need amending to ensure such differences are not ignored.
Immigrants from a Muslim background often need help to adapt their understanding of how the world works. Surely, to withhold that is ‘racist’ because it’s a recipe for social exclusion and ultimately, civil unrest.