Paris Shootings Vigil
Civil Liberties

The Paris attacks are a reminder of our unwillingness to accept uncomfortable truths

 

Do you remember the story of Rachel Dolezal, the black US civil rights activist, who was outed by her parents earlier this year as actually being white? Five months on she’s now finally admitted that she was “biologically born white to white parents,” but continues to maintain that she still self-identifies as black.

The media furore following the initial revelations revealed the extent of the anger surrounding her supposed deception. Included in the voices of indignation was that of her black adopted brother. He was quoted as saying “It’s kind of a slap in the face to African-Americans because she doesn’t know what it’s like to be black. She’s only been African-American when it benefited her. She hasn’t been through all the struggles.”

Now can you imagine a feminist who’s been through decades of activism railing against the inequalities between the sexes suggesting that transgender male-to-females can never appreciate what it’s like to be fully female? But of course that’s exactly the opinion Germaine Greer was expressing a few weeks ago. She’s got a point. Take Caitlyn (previously Bruce) Jenner. No matter how much we accept her as a ‘her’ and no matter how much surgery she goes through, her body is still packed full of Y chromosomes, her skeletal structure and voice is undoubtedly male and if she was still young enough, she’d never be allowed to repeat her Olympic gold medal feats as a woman.

For those who disagree with Dolezal’s or Greer’s views there are three options available: ignore them hoping everyone will lose interest in time, attempt to present a more powerful and valid counter argument or finally do your best to discredit them and suppress their voice. For Greer, the result has been an effective ban from speaking at Cardiff University, being branded a misogynist and Elton John dismissing her as an attention seeker. Her views may be well considered, but that counts for nothing to those who take offence at her apparent transphobia.

Just because Greer’s words are upsetting to some, does that make them unacceptable? Are we unwilling to engage with the truth, to the point of suppressing it just because it stirs up some unwelcome questions and feelings? The 19th century English philosopher, John Stuart Mill wrote that:

The peculiar evil of silencing the expression of an opinion is, that it is robbing the human race; posterity as well as the existing generation; those who dissent from the opinion, still more than those who hold it. If the opinion is right, they are deprived of the opportunity of exchanging error for truth: if wrong, they lose, what is almost as great a benefit, the clearer perception and livelier impression of truth, produced by its collision with error.

Truth is the real issue here, not insensitivities shown towards LGBT people, or any other group. Once upon a time, not so long ago, truth in this country was held in high esteem. That value inherited largely from a Christian worldview, was intimately tied to justice and righteousness. One of the signs in the Bible of a fallen society is that truth perishes. It is not conincidental that as the Christian faith has faded considerably from our public conscience, we see the perverse concept of the right not to be offended becoming increasingly commonplace. Our universities, once hotbeds of debate and promoters of reason and factual analysis, are turning away perfectly legitimate speakers because some students are now considered so thin-skinned and in need of protecting that the discussion on campus of some subjects that may possibly upset them is to be avoided even if they are not being forced to participate in it. We rebrand Christmas as a winter festival and remove religious symbols from chapels in hospitals because of the belief that some group of unspecified people might be offended because it isn’t all inclusive enough.

When we fail to allow open and honest conversation or refuse to accept that truth has more value than superficially keeping everyone comfortable in their views and beliefs, then rather than making our world a more happy and tolerant place the opposite is more likely to occur. It becomes a place where groups compete to work their way to the top of the pecking order, not through the value of what they offer, but according to who shouts the loudest. Once there they will happily attack those who are in disagreement. Inconvenient truths are brushed under the carpet, fear of being reprimanded leads to the internal censorship of ideas and thoughts, which in turn leads to resentment and mistrust, and knowledge is slowly replaced by ignorance. Intellectual laziness and moral cowardice win the day.

All of this has relevance to what we have seen on the streets of Paris on Friday and back in January when the Charlie Hebdo offices were attacked.  These were murderous acts of terrorism carried out by wicked men who deserve no sympathy for their atrocities. No actions carried out by the French can justify such a response, nor can any of those who took part and died in the process be awarded the title of martyr. As Baroness O’Neill, the chair of the Equality and Human Rights Commission said in her recent Theos Annual Lecture:

There are clear limits on what it is permissible to do if one is offended: Any unlawful act of retaliation for offensive speech is just that: unlawful. In particular, killing a person whose speech offends is not martyrdom: it is just killing, and may be murder. Killing a person whose speech offends and oneself (e.g. by suicide bombing) is also not martyrdom: it may be murder and is certainly suicide… Martyrdom is a matter of suffering for one’s beliefs, or being killed for one’s beliefs, —and there are good reasons to use the term correctly and carefully.

Truth alone will not protect us from Islamic State’s evil drive to wipe out all those who will not bow to its strict interpretation of Wahhabism. But unless our politicians and leaders start embracing the truth behind it, we will continue to fail to deal with the poison that continues to spread both here and abroad.

The truth is that the majority of Muslims are law abiding people who are horrified by the slaughter of innocents in Paris as much as anyone else. The truth though is also that all religions are not the same. We cannot separate Islam from the current crisis we face. We might like to think that it is possible to shoehorn all Islamic practice and theology into a culture of Judeo-Christian human rights, but it is not that simple. A poll earlier this year found that 3 in 10 Muslims think that their faith is incompatible with British values. Other surveys in recent years have found large minorities in favour of introducing Sharia law to the UK or that killing in the name of religion is justified. Our government is spending £40m a year on its Prevent strategy trying to stop the radicalisation of some of our Muslims in a way that our mosques are unable to do.

In an open and genuinely tolerant society, we should be able to ask the difficult questions of others with different views and beliefs and expect a productive dialogue that builds understanding and agreement. Instead we pussyfoot around too scared to criticise aspects of the Islamic faith in a way that we freely do with Christianity, for fear of being accused of Islamaphobia or racism or both. As Roger Scruton puts it in an article for the BBC:

Muslims in our society are often victims of prejudice, abuse and assault, and this is a distressing situation that the law strives to remedy. But when people invent a phobia to explain all criticism of Islam it is not that kind of abuse that they have in mind…

None of the real difficulties are to be discussed. And yet it is just now, in Islam’s encounter with Western democracy, that discussion is most needed. Muslims must adapt, just as we all must adapt, to the changed circumstances in which we live. And we adapt by putting things in question, by asking whether this or that belief is true or binding, and in general by opening our hearts to other people’s arguments and attempting to meet them with arguments of our own.

We have made all of this harder by ignoring our differences under the auspices of multiculturalism and put far too little energy into building bridges between different faiths and communities. How can we begin to reach an understanding of where others are coming from when we don’t know how to engage with our neighbour? But this is what we must do with some urgency. The more we open up the channels of conversation and see how much we have in common, the harder it becomes to be offended when we challenge each other’s differences. If we are to avoid our society tearing itself apart and appreciate the true battles that need to be fought, we have no choice. Bombing the Islamic State to oblivion will never fully destroy its underlying lifeblood. It is a war for hearts and minds that is as relevant in this country as it is in France, Germany, Syria or Iraq. And until we can openly discuss the nature of radicalisation unhindered by the concerns of who might take offence, we will make little if any progress.

Jesus said that the truth will set us free. We’re learning the hard way that ultimately no one wins if instead we choose to suppress it.

 

 

  • dannybhoy

    “Once upon a time, not so long ago, truth in this country was held in high esteem. That value inherited largely from a Christian worldview, was intimately tied to justice and righteousness. One of the signs in the Bible of a fallen society is that truth perishes. It is not coincidental that as the Christian faith has faded considerably from our public conscience, we see the perverse concept of the right not to be offended becoming increasingly commonplace.”

    Excellent and insightful article, and here’s an example…
    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3320143/Why-Downton-doesn-t-God-TV-chiefs-ordered-s-creators-leave-religion-case-upset-viewers.html

    I know it’s from the Daily Mail and therefore shouldn’t be trusted, so here’s one from the more respectable Telegraph….
    :0)

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/media/11997169/God-banished-from-Downton-Abbey-says-shows-historical-advisor.html

  • Anton

    we pussyfoot around too scared to criticise aspects of the Islamic faith in a way that we freely do with Christianity, for fear of being accused of Islamaphobia or racism or both.

    Or, in some cases, for fear of being murdered.

    Some words of Jesus are relevant to the multiculturalist experiment: A kingdom divided against itself cannot stand (Mark 3:24).

    Two of the Paris jihadists came to Europe from Syria in the last four months, posing as refugees. Tomorrow the first plane-loads of refugees from Syria arrive in Britain to begin a new life…

  • len

    We are seeing just how evil a Christ- less religion can actually be (all in the name of ‘god ‘of course) and how darkness has been allowed to spread under the cloak of ‘Political Correctness’ where a lie preferable is to the truth…
    How many more acts of pure evil will it take to wake up for people to realise that the God of the Bible was the only and the last barrier against the tide of evil waiting to sweep us away?

    • alternative_perspective

      Many, many, many.

    • Hi Len. A few years ago I was arguing on line with an atheist, an educated medical man, who said he would rather go to hell than acknowledge God EVEN IF CONFRONTED BY GOD AFTER DEATH. I stopped trying to argue with him after that.

  • Stig

    Excellent article – well done!

  • Islamic State’s evil drive to wipe out all those who will not bow to its strict interpretation of Wahhabism

    To you, it’s evil. To Muslims, it’s the word of God:

    [9:111] Allah has purchased of the faithful their lives and worldly goods and in return has promised them the Garden [Paradise]. They will fight for His cause, slay, and be slain.

    That’s where Muslims ‘are coming from’, a religion so far removed from Western values as to render your suggested bridge-building useless. As for seeing ‘how much we have in common’, the answer is a big fat zero. Islam was introduced into the West not to make our countries better but to destroy them, and all the remedies you advance will assist that destruction because they are predicated on Islam remaining in the West. Scruton clearly thinks the same as you: ‘Muslims must adapt, just as we all must adapt’. Like Hell we must: if Europe does not rid itself of Islam, Europe is finished.

  • A phobia is an irrational fear of something.
    My fear of Islam is very real, not irrational.
    Therefore I am not Islamophobic.

    • FIREBRED

      Yup, your “weltanschauung” is correct!

  • Jeremy Poynton

    “Elton John dismissing her as an attention seeker”

    ell, I guess it takes one to know one. Tho’ GG was not seeking attention, rather stating the truth. Can’t have that, can we? Somebody might be upset by it.

    • James Bolivar DiGriz

      Yes I had a good chortle at that line as well.

  • CliveM

    Thank you for an interesting and thought provoking article. Sadly though I suspect that what will happen is that the Govt. Will try to ensure less truth is spoken, not more.

    We are today a society punished for saying truth. Sadly I don’t see this changing soon. Our leaders are too frightened of the implications.

  • carl jacobs

    It’s interesting. A man can by force of will recreate himself as a woman despite the reality of biology. But a white woman cannot by force of will recreate herself as a black woman. Why would this be when sex is essential while race is incidental? Perhaps because race is valued for the access in provides to the official status of victimhood – a status jealously defended by those who possess it. Value is of course determined by scarcity.

    • Phil R

      It is going the wrong way on the hierarchy of power and entitlement as seen by the left

      The accepted wisdom in our unequal equality utopia in top place at present is T then LGB then black or muslim then female then white male.

      It is not permitted it seems to move groups the wrong way or in the wrong manner

      • Hmm. This would make an interesting graphic.

    • William Lewis

      It’s a complex hierarchy of competing rights, sleights and grievances based on, err, not a lot really.

  • This, by Ali Minai a year ago but now republished, gives an insider’s take: http://www.3quarksdaily.com/3quarksdaily/2015/11/unreal-islam.html

    Wahhabism is a variety of real Islam just as the Westminster Confession is a variety of real Christianity. Yet it is some centuries since Christian governments punished heresy. Minai discusses the problem.

    • Good link. Right-on and a primer on how to say a book’s worth with a few paragraphs.

  • Bombing the Islamic State to oblivion will never fully destroy its underlying lifeblood. It is a war for hearts and minds that is as relevant in this country as it is in France, Germany, Syria or Iraq.

    There are no wars for “hearts and minds.” Wars are for defeating enemies and incapacitating them severely and long enough to temove them as physical threats and to discourage hope and imitators. The destruction of ISIS will first and foremost save the lives of its subjects, will put an end to the genocide of Kurds, Christians and Yazidis faster than the under-armed Kurdish fighters and will, for the foreseeable future, serioisly depress Islamic political triumphalism, dreams and ambitions in their countries in East as well is in their enclaves in the West. It’s only then that the hearts and minds can follow.

    • carl jacobs

      I don’t know if it counts as “winning hearts and minds” but you can pulverize a world view in a nation as a consequence of devastating defeat. This happened both in Germany and Japan. Of course it can only affect those generations directly affected. Nothing is permanent. But the change in Japan after 1945 especially was astonishing.

      • My point is that defanging an enemy is more important and doable than trying to change his world view. Historically, Islamic societies become gentle and peaceful only when vastly outnumbered or crushingly defeated. Judaism and Christianity are still around today not so much because of their ability to win hearts and minds, but because the Mongols savagely destroyed Islam’s power base for centuries to come.

        • carl jacobs

          Historically, Islamic societies become gentle and peaceful only when vastly outnumber or crushingly defeated.

          I agree with this. The ideological incapacity of secularism to recognize this basic fact is why it will fail in its efforts to address this problem. Secularism is ideologically committed to the idea that religion must be orthonormal to civilization.

          • Orthonormal? Cut it out, Carl! It’s too early for me to google dictionaries!

            Oh, yeah, and this is the kind of definition I really want to be reading beforre my first cup o’ java:

            Orthonormal: In mathematics, particularly linear algebra, an orthonormal basis for an inner product space V with finite dimension is a basis for V whose vectors are orthonormal, that is, they are all unit vectors and orthogonal to each other.

          • carl jacobs

            Well, yeah. Doesn’t everyone know that? ;-). It was the perfect word for the sentence.

            You can’t consider yourself truly educated if you haven’t taken Linear Algebra and suffered through the interminable task of inverting matrices by hand. Two semesters of Calculus and then be semester of Linear Algebra should be required for every Liberal Arts degree.

          • Linear algebra? I’m not googling that one. I’m still working on subtractions and divisions. Will let you know when I get to algebra.

          • William Lewis

            Do you suppose that Carl has a system of equations for determining which tie to wear of a morning?

          • carl jacobs

            Yes, actually…

            IF customer_meeting THEN

            suit = BLUE
            shirt = WHITE
            tie = RED

            ELSE

            PRINT(“Tie? What is this thing you call ‘tie’?”)

            END

          • William Lewis

            That’s some natty dress style you’ve got going on there, Carl. I hope your customers appreciate it. Hopefully there’s more code than that as I wouldn’t like to imagine you leaving the house naked when there are no customer meetings.

          • I wore a tie for about half an hour two years ago at a bat mitzvah. It absorbed half the contents of my soup bowl before I took off the infernal thing. A blue suit with a red tie? How American.

          • FIREBRED

            Very mightily so, I may add!

          • carl jacobs

            Dark blue, of course. My daughter says I like something called “royal tones.” None of that stripey stuff, either.

          • And not the new 2-sizes-too-small kind either, I hope. With the buttoned up jackets and spray-on trousers in the last mid-life attempts show off your butt.

          • carl jacobs

            Please. I am the very embodiment of conservative rectitude and understatement.

          • Oh yeah.

          • IanCad

            No tie stains with a beard.

          • Trickle-down soup economics versus capillary action.

          • IrishNeanderthal

            The grim realities of the recent Paris attacks have largely dampened my desire to indulge in whimsicalities these last few days.

            However, since your contributions here are always so welcome, may I direct your attention to the following:

            The War on Hanukkah is Real — Your Chocolate Maccabees are Really Santas

          • That is freaking hilarious, Irish! Odd and somewhat tacky for the seeming deception, but not problematic (if the foods are kosher) or surprising; our holy days and festivals trigger a frenzy among our food purveyors which equals, if not exceeds, the Christmas mania, and it’s easier to take advantage of existing high volume stock. There are other examples of such, um, “mercantile ecumenism.” I once shipped a truckload of surplus Christmas decorations to a warehouse where scores of yeshiva students were employed to remove all the Santas, snowmen, reindeers and whatnots and convert them into sukkah booth decorations.

            But back to the chocolates, oddly enough most Christmas and Easter candy and chocolate, at least here in Canada, have kosher certification. I once wondered about why the manufacturers would seek certification and pay kashrut inspectors until I saw that on the days after the Christian holidays when prices for these drop, scores of kids in black hats and mothers in sheitels stock up on chocolate Santas or Easter eggs and bunnies. I know there will be an uproar over this, a tempest in the kiddush cup, but if even the Orthodox have no qualms about buying Santas with Santa covering, why not with a Jewish-themed ones; neither will cause a run on baptismal fonts!

          • Never thought of it, but looks like you’re right!

          • alternative_perspective

            So its an incorrect usage as these aren’t unit vectors but fully formed and malignant ones (magnitude and direction)

          • Indeed.

        • Sam

          Dude

          “the Mongols savagely destroyed Islam’s power base for centuries to come.”

          So we need a Klingon empire analogue? Aren’t we , as “Rothschild Zionists”-according to Mr Icke – supposed to control the ‘Roswell grey aliens’ from planet zeta ridiculous and the shape shifting reptile dudes from Alpha drancnois ? Where are they when you need ISIS to have a close encounter of the fourth kind ?

          • Maybe now, but not then. Remember, the Templars controlled the telluric currents, witches flew on spaceship broomsticks and the Rosicrucians were camped out in our real Temple, over in Saudi Arabia.

      • FIREBRED

        So…see…it worked, k?

      • Tutanekai

        Ah, I see. Japan.

        So when can we expect the nukes to start raining down on Raqqa? What more effective game changer could there be? Would the re-education of the Japanese have proceeded as quickly as it did without Hiroshima and Nagasaki as warnings of what might happen to them if they failed to adjust their thinking along lines approved by the US?

        Odd that someone who rails against secular pressure on Christians to alter their beliefs should support Western pressure on the Muslim world to do just the same. Citing Japan as an example illustrates how far you’d be willing to go to in that process.

        Let’s all thank your imaginary god that YOUR finger isn’t on the button…

        • No need for a nuke; a single MOAB will do…unless the Russkies get there first with their FOAB. Assuming it’s real and assuming they care about ISIS, of course.

          • Tutanekai

            The poor man’s nuke, eh? Problem is you limit the damage to a defined area and relatively short timescale, when really what you want to do is cow a populace into submission with radiation sickness and the prospect of long term birth defects.

            No, nothing says “my way or the highway” like a nuke. How many does Carl have in his pocket and when and where will he drop the first one?

            If Japan is the example we should follow, it has to be nukes. And it fits with the Fox News more-Republican-than-Reagan persona of the person hinting at such a solution.

            I only lack one vital piece of the jigsaw before I can say for certain whether he’d be in favour of nuking IS. Does he pronounce it “nooklee-er” or “nookiller”? If the latter, selling factor two million sunblock in Raqqa might be a good business opportunity for any enterprising readers of this blog who live in the region.

            What one rabid right winger thinks is generally a reflection of what they all think. So when Donald Trump marches in triumph to the White House and appoints Carl Jacobs as Defense Secretary, cancel your summer holiday to Cyprus or Turkey…

          • You don’t cow ISIS types; they love to die. You disable them and let the new “naqba” legends grow until they build another simulacrum of a religion around them.

            Funny how everyone moans over Japan, but glosses over the greater numbers of Chinese they bayoneted, raped, beheaded, burned, medically experimented on and and so on.

          • carl jacobs

            This post is so Linus.

          • William Lewis

            It so is. Initially he lulls you into a false sense of security with whimsical anecdotes and/or general descriptive scene setting. But slowly the ratchet turns as the pH level drops progressively, paragraph by paragraph, to the eventual denouement; an outpouring of acid and venom to despatch the subject of his ire to their rightful place; the swivel eyed abyss of unenlightenment.

          • LOL! You’re a poet, Sir.

          • William Lewis

            Most generous of you, Avi.

          • dannybhoy

            MOAB?
            FOAB??
            You’re starting to get too technical Avi.

          • Mother or Father of All Bombs; worth a google.

          • dannybhoy
          • No, this is just a plug of aerodynamically shaped metal, tungsten which won’t melt on re-entry fromorbit, and its the kinetic energy from its mass and terminal velocity which wreaks havoc, not explosives.

          • Hi

            And the theoretical ” rod from God ” (a kinetic weapon).

          • Yes, I renember Dad talking about it over 20 years ago when he was working on SDI projects with Pratt & Whitney’s Research Division although on conventional stuff with turbine engines. The cost of taking up a tungsten projectile into space and maneuvering the thing over the target way too high.

          • Hi

            One for the future, but at the same time the USN is developing rail guns….

        • carl jacobs

          It’s a key. It’s not a damn button.

          Idjit.

          • dannybhoy

            It’s Linus…

          • Linus has been chomping at the bit to get all fanciful and poetic-like for weeks now. This is just a trickle, wait til his dam bursts.

            You’re not gonna be expect us to accep “idjit” as a new way spelling, are you?

          • William Lewis

            It’s certainly not lidjit.

          • carl jacobs

            “Idjit” is a perfectly proper word, thank you. Here consider this famous quote:

            Idjit dragon! Dragons is so stupid.

          • CliveM

            Is accep a Canadian form of spelling?????

          • carl jacobs

            Due to the unwarranted skepticism displayed on this thread regarding the legitimacy of the word “idjit” I hereby present irrefutable and unassailable proof.

          • Thank goodness; wouldn’t want you to plonk down your coffee mug on a button when you wife calls to chew you out for forgetting to drag out the recyclables on garbage day. I guess no “reset” function like Hillarity’s button.

          • carl jacobs

            There used to be something called a CLIP command for Cancel Launch in Process. But it was deactivated well before my time. So, no. Once you commit a sortie, it’s gone.

          • Cut-backs or charming optimism?

          • carl jacobs

            I really don’t know any.more about it. All my Tech Order said was “Not used.” When they got rid if it or whether then even implemented it is outside my knowledge. It was surely long gone before I went to Initial Qualification Training.

          • Tutanekai

            “Push the button” is a euphemism for a nookiller, sorry, nuclear launch. There may be no button to push. There may be a key that needs to be turned. But that doesn’t render the phrase meaningless or idiotic. It’s a euphemism. Like “tipping the wink” or “lending someone your ear”, it doesn’t have to be 100% technically correct.

            You do know what a euphemism is, don’t you. No?

            Idjit.

          • carl jacobs

            “Push the button” is a euphemism for a nookiller, sorry, nuclear launch.

            Oh, do please enlighten me on the subject, Linus. It would be fascinating to learn about this subject. Tell me everything you know.

      • An update, if you missed it while busy with algebra: Your fearless leader is about to speechify at the G20. One presumes that he might even be on time. Have your smelling salts ready.

        • carl jacobs

          You enjoy this, don’t you?

          • Hey, we’re looking at 4 years of Baby Trudeau while your Obama days are coming to an end. Give me my cheap thrills, eh?

  • carl jacobs

    If most Muslins oppose this, then that Muslim majority had better take active steps to defeat it. And I don’t mean standing in a square holding a sign saying “Not in my name.” They need to actively identify, fight, oppose and betray these people. They need to take up arms against them. Join with the police. Infiltrate. Inform. Testify. They need to incur the wrath of the terrorist not by speaking, but by doing. When the terrorist labels them traitors against Islam, then you will know they are doing what is necessary.

    • Let’s not get overly ambitious, there, Carl. Begin with pressuring them to stop providing a welcoming environment and to begin pushing their own hoodlums away from family and social life, institutions, services…and money and women.

      • carl jacobs

        Not enough. The threat falls principally upon them. They must realize what they are risking by inaction. There won’t be distinctions made when the gloves come off.

        And those gloves will come off.

        • Well, in this case maybe, unkess the current anger is another flash in the pan. As Mark Steyn quipped in his latest, our noble leaders are preparing to meet over a non-existent problem….global warming…and fretting over a miniscule ocean level rise in the 22nd century, long after Europe has been “washed away” by the Muslim waves. At least he’s not in Canada anymore to be hauled in again by our Human Rights Star Chamber.

          • carl jacobs

            Fear is a powerful motivator. It will sweep away these current gov’ts and replace them with something else. And that fear is not just physical. It is existential. It is rooted in demographic decline. Don’t underestimate what is coming.

            Remember how fast Europe changed after WWII. It could happen again. The current generation believes nothing. It is easy to replace nothing with something once fear is introduced.

          • CliveM

            You give people to much credit. People will keep avoiding reality for a while yet.

          • Same as Clive, with the addition that this may have been so in the past, but not no more, as you folks south of us say. With bonuses and benifts, all sorts of Free Stuff, our devices, soma music and pelvic issues, our attention span is barely that of a fruit fly’s life span.

          • CliveM

            Avi

            The truth is too terrible and the options are too bleak for people to face reality. They will go on hoping that if they wish it hard enough, the problem will go away.

            I think we will need daily civil war on our streets with our children under real threat before things will change.

            Btw do you get “I’m a celebrity Get me out of here”? It’s great, you should see the contestants!! Lol and they have to eat bugs!!! Anyway I was reading OK magazine (actually my wife’s, but you know I pick it up occasionally)…………….

            What was it we were discussing? My memory these days, anyway………………..

          • Yes, and the candlelight memorials, flowers and stuffies, songs by our balladeers and speeches by our betters will surely wash away any lingering unease getting in the way of The Good Life.

            No TV, Clive. Occasional glimpses at friends’ places fortify my resolution not to drag out one of those things into the house. But I have seen bits of shows like that and marvelled.

          • CliveM

            You know what I was getting at? He says hoping he hasn’t just made an arse of himself!

          • Probably I don’t, mainly because I’m overwhelmed with my own struggle to remember really difficult words like, couch, cupboard, brake calipers….while everyday ones like Weltanschauung, irredentism and honorificabilitudinitabius get in the way. (Google needs to add that last one, Will Shakespeare’s longest word)

          • CliveM

            Oh well!! I’ve done it before, I’ll probably do it again.

          • FIREBRED

            It did kinda rained on their parade, though, lol!
            But, apparently good Mussulmans are
            doing their their shtick just fine –
            Be it Rain or Shine!

          • Don’t laugh yet…watch and marvel at how they’ll dig their teeth into this stupid distraction and expect to hear how ISIS, Paris and the latest comet fly-by are all ominous signs of the climate change demons.

          • CliveM

            Don’t be ridiculous, it’s all a Jewish conspiracy! The 9 Gates of Zeppelin or whatever it is.

          • Or Roger Waters’ Flying Zionist Pig.

          • CliveM

            Sadly I had to google that reference!

    • Dreadnaught

      Terrorism and involvement with aiding terrorist planning should carry the ultimate penalty: only then will it be shown that we will not tolerate or accommodate people who seek to destroy us.

      • Andre´Kristian

        Exactly, sir! The ultimate penalty is the crucial point. However, as long as our respective countries are eager, obliging little lackeys under the treacherous misrule of EU, that delicate question won´t arise. There is a malevolent horn of plenty, washing us with its showers of sullage, making us disabled to act. How many of those swarthy terrorist rotters are not seeking their comfort and protection here in Sweden?! We are not dwelling in our old, secure democracy any longer, since democracy has ceased to exist, One is not able to forward any criticism towards this preposterous politics, that aims towards a social, cultural and economic crisis. The blasted local newspapers refuse to publish any counter-argument and objection, regardless how well composed and logic it is written. Meanwhile, we are besieged by beggars, scoundrels and all kinds of riff-raff, enjoying the world- famous Swedish hospitality! Woe is us, dear sir! How enchanting it would be if we had the privilege of a government, ruled by common bloody sense, that would banish the unsightly troglodytes, back to whatever cess-pit they originate from. Ah! Those were the days when we could regard ourselves as a Christian nation-state. How elevating! As for now, it is merely a question of time before one of the rectangles of the Swedish national flag gets a new, Arabic design. All it takes is a few of our new multicultural friends to ask for it. I am utterly grateful every time I am able to hoist the blue and yellow flag, so I have better make the most of it while I still can! Thank You!
        Andre´;)

        • bluedog

          ”Andre Kristian” seems to have raised the verbose piss-take to world class levels.

          • Andre´Kristian

            Any suggestions what to do with Your less brilliant remark, sir? The question is whether one should be indulgent here or simply kick it out of sight?! I do believe I prefer the last alternative. After all, one should always strive after some sort of tolerable performance. Perhaps I am unworthy of posting comments on this venerable page. However, as long as the spirit is of a commendable nature, I could be regarded as pardonable. Bear no inquietude, my endearing fellow! I shall be bold enough to return, to receive my daily dose of inspiration! Do behave while I perform my commissions!
            Andreas ☝️

    • FIREBRED

      LOL! Keep dreaming…it’s free & and it certainly
      could not hurt, – in the short run, that is!

    • CliveM

      http://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-34830402

      An interesting article about how Obama may react. Or not.

  • Dreadnaught

    …that some group of unspecified people

    Unless I am mistaken, This is a prime example of intimidation of the mind when Mr Scott; you could have just as easily said MUSLIM and have done with it. Criticising other for the same fudging timidity is hardly appropriate I suggest.

    • FIREBRED

      Yup, CORRECT! That kind of PC – “balanced & nuanced”
      views of reality squarely got us where we are now!

    • From what I’ve seen Muslims are far less offended than the secular PC brigade who think they somehow know best and falsely assume that those of one religion (never Christianity) will get upset over the festivals of other religions. If you ask them to provide evidence of who exactly is offended they’ll most likely draw a blank.

      • James60498 .

        Agreed.

        I was once in a taxi where the (Pakistani origin) taxi driver was complaining that the (almost entirely white) council forced his company to employ drivers who couldn’t speak English and forbad him from flying an England flag from his taxi during a football event in case it upset anyone. ( A flag for football purposes may have offended me, but I don’t think that the council were too worried about my feelings).

      • Dreadnaught

        that those of one religion
        Now what would that religion be I wonder? I’m sure I don’t know what you could possibly be inferring – the Jews?

      • Roger Sponge

        I agree. My right-on employer started mumbling on the intranet that ladies shouldn’t wear a cross as jewellry in case anyone was “offended”. HR was suitably coy when I asked for examples. My Muslim colleagues were my greatest allies in countering what one called “patronising nonsense”.

        • Dreadnaught

          You mean like they did when Rushdie ran from the fatwa and they gathered round to defend him – even if it was a crap book.

      • Coniston

        Many people of other faiths choose to send their children to a Church school, rather than to a secular state school.
        Incidentally, I read on another web site today that in Downton Abbey they never showed the start of a meal because the producers did not want to show the saying of grace (which would have been normal at the time), because they did not wish to ‘offend’ secularists or atheists who might have been watching the programme.

      • grutchyngfysch

        Totally agree, Gillan. That’s been my experience as well – it’s officious and often painfully unimaginative types who tend to work for local councils (I have no clue as to their religious beliefs, if any), who cause most of the Winterval-esque madness.

  • Busy Mum

    “..The truth is that the majority of Muslims are law abiding people who are horrified by the slaughter of innocents in Paris as much as anyone else.”
    But does the Muslim majority really see these victims as ‘innocent’? Or are they debauched and decadent pleasure-seekers who deserve to reap the rewards of their indulgent – and, dare I say it, Godless – lifestyles?

    • FIREBRED

      Yup, the extremists Muslims are the exploding ones, or the ones cutting one head off…the moderate ones are the ones holding you
      down, so you don’t escape, lol!

    • grutchyngfysch

      Well, by and large there is a lot of decadence and debauchery. The Islamist isn’t entirely incorrect there. The problem is not with taking an oppositional stance to mainstream culture (plenty of different groups of people do that across the political and religious spectrums) – the problem is with advancing that opposition by murder.

      The moment we understand that, we have a grip on the kinds of extremism that need to be destroyed – it’s not extremism of opinion, it’s extremism of will. While we may feel uncomfortable with the former from time to time, we simply cannot live with the latter.

      • dannybhoy

        You’re right. There are lots of aspects of our current popular culture which bring shame to our nation, and in that sense many Christians would sympathise with Muslims.
        The difference is of course that it is not our role to ‘punish the evildoer.’
        We hold up the Gospel, we speak of God’s judgement, but we do no harm…

    • FIREBRED

      Truth be told, the Western debauchery, marching in lockstep under the Standard of Rainbows, & of course under usurped by the Rainbow Cloud Herd of Unicorns

      Our commonly held Proud Banner of FREEDOM did get a bit out of hand…

      but, perhaps I digressed…[AGAIN!!!>>>LOL!]

    • bockerglory

      And some of the women were immodestly dressed. And people were drinking alcohol and eating Haram food. On a Friday after prayers! I worked with Muslins and they see us as a dirty uncircumcised promiscuous people who are a threat to the Muslim pure and good in Britain.

      They do look down on us ….

  • FIREBRED

    I’d like to bring this to your kind attention, Ladies & Gentlemen:

    The current fast & furious influx of alien pisslame species is eerily
    similar to the feeding mode of certain subspecies of STARFISH, an
    extremely voracious CARNIVORE –>

    -> The STAR-fish moves over it, attaches its tube feet and exerts
    pressure on the valves by arching its back. When a small gap between
    thevalves is formed, the starfish inserts part of its stomach into the
    prey, excretes digestive enzymes & slowly liquefies the soft body
    parts.

    As the adductor muscle of the shellfish relaxes, more stomach is inserted
    and when digestion is complete, the stomach is returned to its usual
    position in the starfish with its now liquefied bivalve meal inside it.

    The same everted stomach process is used by other STAR-fish
    to feed on sponges, sea anemones, corals, detritus and algal films.

    In much the same fashion, the once proud Nations – States of European
    Union Community is being now excruciatingly slowly digested
    & not-so-slowly consumed…

    • dannybhoy

      A fishy story if ever I read one.

      • FIREBRED

        LOL!

  • preacher

    The problem I see is whilst most Muslims are peaceful people with a different faith, that want to get on with their lives & follow their beliefs, the Islamic faith is regrettably intolerant of any other belief to the point of rejecting any family member who is open to investigating the said alternatives to Islam even using physical force & threats to ensure obedience.
    Although successful in it’s purpose, if followed it produces a closed society within the general community. This restricts debate & isolates followers from the country & religion that they live in. Thus full integration is rendered virtually impossible.

    However when followers – many of them young, come under the influence of radical older leaders they are easy prey when ordered to commit acts of murder & violence in the name of their faith because they have been programmed to obey without thought or question. If this were not the case they would consider the fact that the indiscriminate killing as seen in Paris would inevitably involve the death of other innocent Muslims.
    Presumably they are told that whoever is not one of them, if those victims are good Muslims, they are casualties of war & should be happy to die as ‘Martyrs’.

    The problem is complex & can only be solved with support & assistance from within the Muslim Community itself, without that we will All be faced with the continuing pain & loss of the bereaved families who lose loved ones.
    Will that happen ? God alone knows, but it is certainly a subject for fasting & prayer.

    • Dreadnaught

      If God exists and Allah exists let them slug it out.

      • peter the painter

        They are one. Its us who have no unity.

        • dannybhoy

          Not so Peter the Painter, God and Allah are very very different.

          • peter the painter

            How ?

          • northernobserver

            What God and Allah ask of their believers are very different

        • The Explorer

          God thinks God is a trinity. Allah thinks the Trinity is ‘shirk’: the unforgivable sin. Bit of incompatibility there, I’d say.

  • jsampson45

    Who is “we”?

  • Broadwood

    Courage, friends. Take the example of David Wood here at Acts 17
    Apologetics – he is a a tireless debater with Muslims about their faith and about Christianity, he has stood up to be counted many times – he knows his material inside out, and has won the respect of many of his debatees, as he is willing to take on any questioner, and any question.

    Let’s do our homework and be ‘Always be prepared to give a defence to everyone who asks you to explain the hope you have’ 1 Peter 3 v15.

  • Inspector General

    “…of our unwillingness to accept uncomfortable truths”

    Here’s one, capital punishment for all those who assist in terrorism is effective.

    There was no stopping these particular servants to Allah. Not once they set off that evening. But what of those who armed them, accommodated them, fed them, warmed them, transported them. Who else was in on it? Did they have any idea of what was to happen? Are not these people as guilty as the perpetrators?

    All it takes is for one helper to get cold feet. To decide he does not want to risk his neck for Allah, for the cause, for jihad. He goes to the police, and the culprits are apprehended.

    Do you see how it works?

    • CliveM

      We’ve a way to go before people will be frightened enough for that. We’d also need to suspend trial by jury.

    • William Lewis

      “Here’s one, capital punishment for all those who assist in terrorism is effective.”

      If we are at war then any of our own citizens helping the enemy is quite clearly treason which was, quite legitimately in my book, until 2003 the last crime to carry a death sentence.

      • Old Nick

        You forget arson in HM dockyards.

        • William Lewis

          That went even earlier I think.

          • Pubcrawler

            Yes, in the Criminal Damage Act 1971.

  • David

    As the article argues so well, we have been running away from Truth ever since we ditched the Christian idea, that there is A Truth, and instead embraced relativism.

    Until relativism is unseated, I can see no end to unending confusion.

    But what will unseat relativism ? The need to survive individually and culturally – are they sufficiently powerful drives ?

    If relativism is ever unseated, what will be inserted, in its place, as Truth ?
    Resurgent Christianity, Islam or some variant of Science + Humanism ?

    I have no idea. But God knows. As a Christian I believe that whilst we must work towards shaping this broken place, and this life, to reflect His Kingdom, only God Himself can bring about His Kingdom, in its full fruition – and He will !
    Of that we can be sure.

  • Ivan M

    You will know the truth and the truth shall set you free – Jesus Christ.

    No guarantee though that it will make you happy in the meantime. All are slaves to their passions, hence the rejection of truth which is the defining characteristic of Western Civilisation, as opposed to all others which are content with a simulacrum.

  • Manfarang

    Socrates had the right ideas about truth.

    • Ivan M

      A type of proto-Jesus, though something of a pederast.

      • Manfarang

        “It is the historian’s job to draw attention to the personal, social, political and indeed moral issues behind the literary and artistic representations of the Greek world. The historian’s job is to present pederasty and all, to make sure that … we come face to face with the way the glory that was Greece was part of a world in which many of our own core values find themselves challenged rather than reinforced.” Robin Osborne

  • I am listening right now to BBC ‘nothing to do with Islam’ Takkiyah.

    • William Lewis

      Those treacherous fools. Their enlightened, secular ideology will be the death of us all.

    • Ivan M

      Somewhat more than 10% of them support the goals of the ISIS. About 1% are prepared to take direct action. Most others will probably tag along, though about 25% will resist.

      • 10% of whom, British Muslims or BBC editorial and journalist staff?

    • Martin

      Stephen

      It was interesting to listen to James White last night https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jd25Y5tprVE, one of the things he said was that there are Moslems condemning ISIS but they just don’t get reported on the media.

      One of his comments was that he declined to comment on Paris while emotions were so high and got attacked for it.

      • Fair comments Martin. A Pakistani Muslim business associate of mine is plastering Facebook with ‘don’t blame Muslims’ posts and I’m sure he is genuine. I certainly don’t blame him.

        But if you haven’t come across ‘don’t blame Muslims for ISIS’ stuff then your news input must be very different from mine. It’s everywhere.

        I don’t blame cultural Muslims, I blame the vile Quran and it’s demon possessed psychopathic mass murdering antichrist author. And I blame our fake conservative government for many things, not least it’s wicked interventions join Libya and Syria.

        I’ll wait here for the thought police, they should be here in an hour or 2.

        • Martin

          Stephen

          I wasn’t saying “don’t blame Muslims” just not all Muslims. And I think they may come for me first, I’ll warn you.

          • Understood Martin.

            As the generally execrable Roy ‘Chubby’ Brown sayeth, ‘Not all the Muslims are terrorists, but all the terrorists are Muslims.’

  • The Explorer

    There are now plenty in Europe who think that Europe’s post-war immigration policy has been a mistake; and that those who long for the familiar could not do better than to remain where they are, or in its closest safe equivalent.

    But there are still plenty committed to the concept of multiculturalism. It is worth thinking how one might respond to the following sort of sentiments:

    Well, yes, this latest incident is a disappointment. Integration has been slower than anticipated because of the need to overcome endemic European racism The solution is to bring in a lot more immigrants. Then they will feel more at home, more at ease in their own way of doing things and among their own kind, less threatened by an alien environment, and be less inclined to lash out at a hostile host culture.

    • William Lewis

      Get a shotgun licence? That’s what the Swedes are doing apparently. Who said it?

      • The Explorer

        On the basis that when the law is an ass, one has to start finding one’s own solutions? That, I fear, is what happens when frustration with those running (or not running) things reaches a certain pitch.

        • William Lewis

          Whom were you quoting?

  • Royinsouthwest

    Baroness O’Neil said In particular, killing a person whose speech offends is not martyrdom … etc. etc.

    Does Baroness O’Neil speak English? The English word “martyr” describes a peaceful person who dies for some belief or principle or who sacrifices his or her life for someone else. Before mass Muslim immigration it was never used for murderers.

    the chair of the Equality and Human Rights Commission is part of the problem. Jenny Watson, the last head of the old Equal Opportunities Commission (before it changed its name) is the chair of the Electoral Commission, the body that is supposed to ensure our elections are fair and honest, but the Electoral Commission deliberately ignored complaints about fraud in the election of Lutfur Rahman as mayor of Tower Hamlets.

    Despite the fact that a judge had Rahman removed from office, Jenny Watson has kept her job as head of the Electoral Commission.

  • CliveM

    To prove the point of this post:

    Paris attacks: Tory aide sorry for ‘rivers of blood’ post
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-wales-politics-34831943

    On BBC website. Even if you disagree, why can this not be said?

  • Martin

    For those who wonder what Jesus would have said, perhaps this is it:

    There were some present at that very time who told him about the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices. And he answered them, Do you think that these Galileans were worse sinners than all the other Galileans, because they suffered in this way? No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish. Or those eighteen on whom the tower in Siloam fell and killed them: do you think that they were worse offenders than all the others who lived in Jerusalem? No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish.
    (Luke 13:1-5 [ESV]