No change for UK’s religious minorities

The Cockwombles at Britain First would like you to believe that they are rising to a current threat that is particular to our age and unlike anything that this country has faced before. They seek legitimacy in the public mindset by claiming to be a topical organisation dealing with a modern problem. But nothing could be further from the truth.

In reality Britain has had a problem with its racist element for decades. British Nazi opposition to the Jews is well known. So is their opposition to black immigrants after the arrival of the Windrush in the mid twentieth century. Racial and religious discrimination isn’t new and it’s just as indefensible and stupid today as it ever was.

Mr Jolly, 66, said the ban on turbans and beards was a direct attack on his religion.”

Sohan Singh JollyThat’s a quote from a BBC news article dated April 9th 1969. Exactly 47 years ago today British Sikhs won the right to wear beards and turbans at work. The dispute only ended when Sohan Singh Jolly, a 66 year old Sikh man threatened to burn himself to death in protest at the ban.

Banning beards and turbans in 1969 isn’t unlike the modern Biffer call to ban Islamic traditional dress. And in both cases the motivation is far from respectable. The truth is that religious dress like the Sikh turban or the Muslim hijab really isn’t anyone’s business but those who choose to wear them. It’s only offensive to those who are so wrapped up in their own hate that they will seize upon almost any excuse to feign outrage but the real agenda is racism and religious hatred.

There’s nothing new in the modern far right getting their knickers in a twist about hijabs and burkas. They’re just repeating a very old and tired tactic intended to camouflage their real motivation – racism and religious hatred. But we have news for them…

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Just as The House of Lords ruled in 1982 that Sikhs  were entitledto protection under the Race Relations Act, so too are Muslims. You can bang on about Islam not being a race all you like but it’s still protected by British law and you’re still guilty of criminal discrimination.

Given your love of British laws and traditions, we’d have expected you to know that.

Cockwombles!

 

The power of hatred

There really is power in hatred.

Hatred isn’t just a mindset, it’s an emotional response as well. Hatred leads to resentment and anger, both of which have been linked to physical and psychological health problems and even to early death. Perhaps that’s nature’s way of limiting the impact of our species’ most destructive individuals. They die a little sooner than the rest of us.

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Hatred doesn’t only have the power to kill the haters though. It has the power to kill the hated too. Haters become so locked in their own sad, hate-filled worldview they come to believe all sorts of atrocities are acceptable.

Take the recent case of the neo-nazi white supremacist who attacked an innocent man with a machete just because of the colour of his skin. And as you read the article pay special attention to the phrase…

“…radicalized on line”

That’s why we work so hard to counter Britain First’s lies.

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Because that hatred has power.

Because that hatred kills people.