The Metropolitan Police Service report ‘Hate Crimes against London’s Muslim Communities‘ was published five years ago, and it outlines the everyday nature of Islamophobic incidents:
The Islamophobic incidents reported to and recorded by the Metropolitan Police Service generally occur as victims go about their daily lives, for example, in the street, in or near shops and restaurants or waiting for or on public transport. They are more likely to involve threats and harassment than violence, although one in five incidents involved some degree of violence directed at the victim. The incidents generally involve conflict situations that become aggravated by Islamophobic or anti-Muslim words or actions or situations where perpetrators take immediate advantage of an opportunity that presents itself. Even incidents that show some degree of premeditation by the offender mostly involve letters or phone messages rather than direct contact with the victim.
We can all agree that such incidents are abhorrent: anyone who threatens or harasses a Muslim simply for being a Muslim is not merely moronic, but barbarous and wicked. Whatever our neighbour’s religion or belief, we are commanded to love them and live at peace with them, for therein lies the essence of Christian civilisation. The New Testament is the bedrock of our social contract: the teachings of Jesus – such as the Parable of the Good Samaritan– are the guiding lights for our notion of Human Rights. If it were not for the Bible and the themes of Christian theology which permeate Western politics, our whole way of life would be bound by ignorance, barbarism and superstition. The Church may not have always got it right (and may, indeed, have occasionally oppressed the rational, corrupted the truth, and quashed justice), but out of the dark ages came reformation, renaissance and enlightenment, and we can thank God (and Jesus) that Christian men and women of genius have led us to a better age of higher virtue. The vision of Christendom still persists in Western civilisation: it is our surpassing quality and sanctity; our superior morality and culture…
According to the Met Police, this Western-superiority syndrome is Islamophobic:
So, if you believe Islam is inferior to Christianity; or that Islamic society and culture are inferior to “the West”, you may be arrested for Islamophobia. If you believe Islam is “sexist”, you may be arrested for Islamophobia. If you believe Islam is “violent” or “aggressive”, you may be arrested for Islamophobia. Astonishingly, if you believe Islam to be an expression of political ideology (or is used for “political advantage”), you may be arrested for Islamophobia.
The Met police appear to be oblivious of what’s been going on in Tower Hamlets. Do not all religions agitate for political advantage? Why should it be Islamophobic to point out specific examples of Muslims doing so?
The Met may make appeal to the definition of the Runnymede Trust, but there is a world of difference between a think-tank developing guidelines for community and fraternity, and an agency of law enforcement incorporating these definitions into a definition of criminal activity. How many police officers are aware of the history of Islam? How many grasp the theology of the long-prophesied Caliphate? How many understand the theo-political differences and divergences between its multiple sects? (May one say ‘theo-political’ or does that fall foul of equating the religion with a political ideology?) Is Wahhabism or Saudi Salafism an expression of Islam? If so, how can it be Islamophobic to articulate the bald truth of its violent, aggressive “clash of civilisations” theological genesis and political nature? Doesn’t the Met understand the fundamental difference between abusing Muslims and criticising a religion; between being anti-Muslim and anti-Islam? Why have they adopted a sharia-compliant definition of ‘Islamophobia’, and not one which is informed by the superior enlightened approach to religion which is a hallmark of Western civilisation and founded upon the fundamental freedom of religion?
Is historian Tom Holland guilty of Islamophobia? He said in the Channel 4 documentary ‘ISIS: The Origins of Violence‘:
There are things in the past that are like unexploded bombs that just lie in wait in the rubble, and then something happens to trigger them. And there are clearly verses in the Quran and stories that are told about Mohammed that are very like mines waiting to go off – Improvised Explosive Devices. And they can lie there maybe for centuries and then something happens to trigger them and you get this.
Is Pope Emeritus Benedict guilty of Islamophobia? He proclaimed in his Regensburg lecture ‘Faith, Reason and the University — Memories and Reflections‘: “Show me just what Mohammed brought that was new, and there you will find things only evil and inhuman, such as his command to spread by the sword the faith he preached.” He may have been quoting Byzantine Emperor Manuel II, but might not that simply be a way of circumventing charges of blasphemy or of deflecting disapprobation? Is quoting Tom Holland on this blog not simply a vicarious device for making heartfelt Islamophobic statements while leaving him to deal with the death threats and visits from PC Plod?
Is it ‘hate speech’ or a ‘hate crime’ to highlight the hate speech in the Quran?
Is this blog post Islamophobic?
Perhaps it merits a police investigation.