Another busy day for the shutters up.
A bunch of Islamist bullies managed to get Salman Rushdie’s video talk to the Jaipur Literary Festival blocked.
A bunch of Islamist bullies and some allies wrote a stupid letter to the Guardian demanding more friendly coverage of Islam in the media.
Let’s take a look at that letter. (Martin Bright has been arguing with Sunny Hundal, who signed the letter, at Twitter for an hour or two. Sunny ended up saying he signs letters he doesn’t agree with, leaving Martin and also Padraig Reidy gobsmacked.)
That letter is a dog’s breakfast.
Over the past decade, a number of academic studies have indicated a worrying and disproportionate trend towards negative, distorted and even fabricated reports in media coverage of the Muslim community. Recent research at Cambridge University concludes that “a wider set of representations of Islam would signify a welcome change to reporting practices. Muslims deserve a better press than they have been given in the past decade.” And according to a recent ComRes poll, one in three people in Britain today believe that the media is responsible for “whipping up a climate of fear of Islam in the UK”.
See what they did there? In just the opening paragraph? They jumped from “the Muslim community” to Islam to Muslims and back to Islam again. So what’s the demand? That all three get friendlier coverage? That Islam itself is somehow owed less in the way of “negative” media coverage?
Yes, probably, but the idea is to make that more difficult to notice by throwing in mentions of Muslims and “the Muslim community” to dilute the mentions of Islam. Treating all three as interchangeable of course leads people to think they are, when in fact they’re not. Talking about “the Muslim community” leads people to think that all Muslims are much of a muchness, all think pretty much alike, all seethe at “negative” coverage of Islam, all demand more Islam-friendly media.
An alternative inquiry is necessary to investigate what many regard as widespread and systematic discriminatory practices in reporting on Muslims and Islam in the British media. Victims – whether prominent or not – of alleged discriminatory media coverage have a right to have their testimonies catalogued and examined thoroughly by credible, independent assessors. Recommendations can then be made to improve ethical standards in the reporting of not solely the Muslim community but of all sections of society.
There it is again – Muslims-and-Islam – treated as essentially the same, and inseparable, and both having rights and both being victims of widespread and systematic discriminatory practices. It’s a fundamentally theocratic idea.
And then, some of the signers…
Dr Muhammad Abdul BariChair, East London Mosque
Dr Omer El-Hamdoon Muslim Association of Britain
Moazzam Begg Cageprisoners
Lindsey German Stop The War Coalition
Robert Pitt Islamophobia Watch
Maryam did a post on this.
Islamophobia is nothing but a political term used to scaremonger people into silence. [And yes I’m looking at you Islamophobia Watch.]
Well I am sorry but no can do.
You cannot attribute human qualities to a belief system or Islam and Islamism in order to rule out and deem racist any opposition or criticism.
Just in case they didn’t know, let me repeat. Criticism, mockery, opposition to and even hatred of a belief Is. Not. Racism.
Nor is it a violation of the rights of people who hold the belief. Holding a belief does not confer a right never to hear the belief disputed or mocked.