February 8, 2011 § 2 Comments
Do you see that new little box on the side? The one that says ‘fury’? Yes, thank you David Cameron – thank you for pushing me into a whole new level on my blog. Which is mostly meant to be about music. And books. And brownies. Bastard.
If you haven’t yet read Cameron’s speech on “the failure of multiculturalism” then go right ahead. It’s not much fun, but check it out for yourself.
But, in the spirit of Cameron’s speech, I felt I had to say something. Cameron feels that Muslims have to spend more of their time apologising for terrorists and convincing non-Muslims that they’re perfectly safe and friendly, and almost like ‘normal’ people? Well, I guess that means that as a white non-Muslim I need to spend a little time apologising for his Islamophobia, and assuring people that, despite some surface similarities, I really don’t hold with his brand of bigotry.
Pardon me – what’s that? Cameron claims that we already call out prejudice and crime when it’s committed by white people of various and sundry faiths.
So, when a white person holds objectionable views, racist views for instance, we rightly condemn them. But when equally unacceptable views or practices come from someone who isn’t white, we’ve been too cautious frankly – frankly, even fearful – to stand up to them.
Look, can’t you see? We already live in a paradise of equality: women earn as much as men, and children are never abused, and gay men are never assaulted, and trans women are never raped, and all colours and classes of people hold hands and join forces for the greater good. If it wasn’t for those pesky Muslims! Oh, wait…
It disgusts me that he can hijack the language of inclusivity and use it to try to divide the population of this country. Observe:
So we should properly judge these organisations: do they believe in universal human rights – including for women and people of other faiths? Do they believe in equality of all before the law? Do they believe in democracy and the right of people to elect their own government? Do they encourage integration or separation?
A fine standard to aspire to. So why is it only Muslim groups that need to be judged by these standards? How could a person possible claim to seek integration and equality and then proceed to scapegoat a part of society that’s already had enough shit to deal with? I know that we expect our politicians to be hypocrites, but isn’t this just a little bit…obvious?
I’m sorry – I’m a little too angry to think straight. But I wanted to say something – because this particular ‘muscular Liberal’ (honestly, check out my biceps) doesn’t like to think that they might be misrepresented by a hate-mongering apologist. And when this kind of prejudice is tossed around as something acceptable, as something that masquerades as being ANTI-bigotry? Then I don’t think it’s enough to shake our heads in disgust, or discuss it in raised voices over coffee.
If we genuinely want to come down on the side of equality, of a real democracy? Then, contrary to Cameron’s claims, I don’t think it’s Muslims who need to be explaining and scraping to the rest of us. In this case I think that it’s non-Muslims who need to publicly declare their hatred of Islamophobia, their real desire to work for a diverse and concrete equality and to apologise for the fuck-wits like Cameron. And then those of us who actually give a damn can get together and work for something tremendous. What’s that? Oh yes – a ‘big society’.