Well so much for Labour.
Labour leader Ed Miliband has said his party will make Islamophobia an aggravated crime, toughing existing hate crime legislation.
Mr Miliband also said that his party intended to ensure that instances of Islamophobia were marked on peoples’ records, in an interview with The Muslim Times.
Although Islamophobia already falls under the Racial and Religious Hatred Act of 2006, whereby it is punishable by up to seven years imprisonment, Mr Miliband’s proposal would allow authorities to hand down tougher sentences for similar crimes.
“We are going to make it an aggravated crime. We are going to make sure it is marked on people’s records with the police to make sure they root out Islamophobia as a hate crime,” he said.
Labour wants to make it an aggravated crime to dislike Islam.
Since we know that Islamists like to pin the label of “Islamophobia” on every kind of criticism of and disagreement with Islam, the prisons of Britain will be overflowing if Miliband is elected.
I saw this via Maajid Nawaz, who commented
Ed Miliband favours a ‘ban’ on “Islamophobia”.
My take: No idea is above scrutiny. No people are beneath dignity.
Quite. Discourage anti-Muslim bigotry by all means, but do not forbid us to dispute or criticize Islam.
Al Dente says
Criticism is not hatred. However many people confuse the two, especially if their ideas are being criticized.
Blanche Quizno says
Why not ban misogyny and anti-gay bigotry instead? Those affect far more people, and they aren’t based on choice or interpretation.
If we were to ‘ban misogyny and anti-gay bigotry instead?’ We might have to deal with members of A Certain Religion, and they might be Offended, which is a licence to murder and burn.
Pierce R. Butler says
Richard Dawkins will need to change his schtick to full-time anti-feminism, if he wants to avoid getting hauled up before the bar on charges of multiple malicious tweets.
As an aside, I hope that “toughing” was just a misprint, and that there isn’t a movement afoot to make it interchangeable with “toughening.” The two are quite different words.
So existing legislation allows punishment up to 7 years in prison, but as an ‘aggravated crime’ then ‘tougher sentences’ will be allowed. Hmmm, how long before this blasphemy by-the-back-door (selected religions only, terms and conditions apply) will be worth a hand, or a head, or a stoning?
Emily Vicendese says
‘Labour Party Manifesto pledged to take a “zero-tolerance approach to hate crime” regarding the growth of Islamophobia as well as anti-Semitism. “We will challenge prejudice before it grows, whether in schools, universities or on social media. And we will strengthen the law on disability, homophobic, and transphobic hate crime,” it said.’ – http://www.muslimnews.co.uk/newspaper/top-stories/labour-to-outlaw-islamophobia-says-miliband-in-an-exclusive-interview/
So how will the law deal with orthodox Judaism and traditional Islam’s homophobia? Would it be anti-Semitic or Islamophobic to charge orthodox Jews or traditional Muslims for espousing homophobia on the basis of their interpretation of their religion?
Danny Butts says
Emily Vicendese says
Oh come on! the bloke makes a perfectly good sound bite, intended for a specific constituency that aren’t expected to go asking awkward questions about how he intends to put the idea in practice and there you go nit-picking.
Eds learnt from the last Labour government. Make sweeping policy statements intending to legislate all the icky stuff out of society and then sack the Home Secretary who fails to implement them practically.
Roll on May when (if predictions are right) we will be shot of the Torys and Eds grip on power will be dependent on some real, actual socialists.