web analytics

Lessons in hatred and tolerance

Written By: - Date published: 10:47 am, February 13th, 2011 - 10 comments
Categories: International, racism, religion - Tags: , ,

There are some ugly things going on in England at the moment:

Cameron’s scapegoating will have a chilling, toxic impact

Blaming Islamists and multiculturalism for the backlash from US and British wars risks fuelling violence on the streets

In parts of Britain, Muslims are effectively under siege. They are routinely spat at and abused in the street. Over the past couple of months there have been arson and other attacks on mosques in Hemel Hempstead, Leicester, Scunthorpe, Stoke and Kingston, as well as desecration of a Muslim graveyard and fire-bombing of a halal shop.

Most of these outrages weren’t even reported in the national media, let alone the occasion for a supportive visit from a government minister. … As the Conservative party chairwoman Sayeeda Warsi said last month – and was roundly abused for doing so – Islamophobia has also “now crossed the threshold of middle-class respectability”. It is the last socially acceptable form of bigotry, often dressed up in the clothes of liberalism. …

[PM David Cameron] turned his fire instead on “Islamists”, “state multiculturalism” and “non-violent extremists” in the Muslim community. Muslims must embrace “British” values of freedom, democracy and equal rights, he declared, as if the vast majority didn’t do so already. Jihadist terror attacks were not driven by British and US wars in the Muslim world, he insisted – in the face of his own intelligence reports – but by an “extremist ideology” rooted in problems of “identity”.

And, grotesquely comparing non-violent Islamists to “rightwing fascists”, he warned that there would be a strict checklist of Muslim bodies the government would not now work with or fund (including the umbrella Muslim Council of Britain). He did criticise Islamophobia, but that passing comment was drowned out by the drumbeat of condemnation targeted at Muslims and their political organisations. …

I guess its up the Muslim world to teach us a thing or two about tolerance and courage:

Thousands of Egyptian Muslims Show Up as “Human Shields” to Defend Coptic Christians From Terorism

On New Year’s Day, a devastating terrorist bombing at a Coptic church in Egypt killed 21 people and injured 79 others. Although the identity of the culprits was not known, it was assumed that they were Muslim extremists, intent on targeting those they saw as heretics. …

Yet by Coptic Christmas Eve, which took place Thursday night in Egypt, things had changed completely. … What had been a promise of solidarity to the weary Coptic community, was honoured, when thousands of Muslims showed up at Coptic Christmas eve mass services in churches around the country and at candle light vigils held outside. From the well-known to the unknown, Muslims had offered their bodies as “human shields” for last night’s mass, making a pledge to collectively fight the threat of Islamic militants and towards an Egypt free from sectarian strife. …

Well and bravely done. To sum up, I can’t do any better than to carry on with the above:

It is a frequent complaint among opinion makers in the United States that the global Muslim community does not condemn and prevent terrorism. New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman has even said that Islam needs a civil war similar to the one the United States fought in order to deal with its extremists. But the truth is that moderate and progressive Muslims all over the world are battling extremism. Here in the United States, one-third of al-Qaeda related terror plots have been broken up thanks to intelligence provided by Muslim Americans. It is up to the press to report these positive stories and not exaggerate the sway that extremists hold over the global Muslim community.

10 comments on “Lessons in hatred and tolerance”

  1. Jenny 1

    With an overbearing and all pervasive state machine, it is somewhat surprising that Mubarak’s secret police never had any leads on the bombing of a Coptic Christian church.

    Some commentators have suggested that, in the campaign of torture, corruption and murder directed against the general population the police were just to busy.

    The looting of Egypt’s cultural heritage from the museum of Cairo, (only prevented by a human cordon of concerned citizens), and the rounding up of foreign journalists, which because of diplomatic niceties, couldn’t be tortured or murdered without risk of international incident, only added to the busy workload of the police.

    Less forgiving commentators have hinted darkly that the attack on Egypt’s Coptic Christian population (Egypt’s largest minority) very conveniently gave the regime excuse for even more repression against the mainly Islamic based opposition parties.

    The Egyptian people’s rally for the defence of their minority citizens is a test that we in the West have sadly often failed, with tragic and horrific results.

    Westerners could learn from the people of Egypt and rally to defend minority citizens from bigotry and prejudice. As well as being the right thing to do. It is the best way of overcoming sectarian extremism.

  2. ianmac 2

    Having met a few in the Muslim community it seems to me that the vast majority just want to get on with living as well as they can. To focus on the minority of angry extremists to condemn the majority is wrong.
    Look at the need to arrest and try the extremist ex-President Christian GW Bush. This might have happened had he gone to Switzerland recently. But surely this is not a case to condemn all Americans?

  3. just saying 3

    Paranoic islamophobia is being heavily pushed by the extreme right-wing “prosperity-theology” churches in NZ. Lotta crap goes round the internet from these local and international sources.

    • Jenny 3.1

      “Paranoic islamophobia is being heavily pushed by the extreme right-wing “prosperity-theology” churches in NZ.”

      just saying

      j.s. I am aware of this being attempted a number of years ago by a small group of Islamaphobic activists from overseas, who tried to get a hearing in the fundamental Christian movement here. Luckily this hate campaign failed to take off, being rejected (as far as I know), by all the Christian congregations in this country. To their credit a ‘fundamental” good sense of fairness and Christian decency by the vast majority of Kiwi Christians, meant these international missionaries of hate couldn’t get a hearing here, and the campaign fizzled out.

      If it has started up again, I would like to know about it.

      j.s. Can you provide links to websites, or cite any NZ Christian publication that currently preaches hate messages or intolerance against Islam or any other non-Christian faith?

      • just saying 3.1.1

        Hi Jenny,

        I’m a bit on the spot here.

        A convoluted reply.

        I have an old, old, close friend who has been trying to save my heathen soul for a number of years. I don’t want to diss her particular group publicly. I appreciate my friend’s sincere wish that I not burn in hell, and try and respect her spiritual beliefs, up to the point where, I believe, they can become paranoic bigotry on a couple of fronts.

        She is a member of a pretty big NZ-based internet prayer-chain/newsgroup, and members often share internet “articles” as a group. Sometimes she used to send a few of the articles to me, usually along particular lines, such as ‘proof’ of miracles and that god answers prayers, and quasi-scientific stuff. Usually I ignored them, sometimes they led to a brief argument.

        Anyhow, maybe two or three years ago she sent a couple of articles with a strong anti-Islam theme. We argued, which led to her sending much more of the anti-islam material that had been shared in the group – to convince me, which led to an even bigger argument, and we’ve never discussed Christianity or Islam (or atheism) again. Which is good actually. But islamophobia sp? is happening in good old NZ. I believe it is one of the many ‘themes’ in Ian Wishart’s magazine too.

        The internet group is made up of people from a variety of Evangelical and Baptist churches.

  4. M 4

    It’s heartening that Egyptians are defending their Coptic countrymen as Coptics do get a very hard time. I once had Coptic Egyptian neighbours and they were so grateful to be in NZ to escape the prejudice.

    I think some of the problem in the ME has been as a result of the US in Afghanistan in the ’70s when it was trying to get rid of the Soviets from the region. The US fired Muslims up using the concept of jihad to help them rid the area of the Soviets and were successful. Then having used jihad and Afghanis to support US troops didn’t know what to do when the jihad was turned on them with a very much enlarged support across the Muslim world.

    A case of unitended consequences, I reckon.

    • Vicky32 4.1

      Oh yes, indeed! I am on an American site, and I see the most unbelievable shite spewed against Islam (and equally vociferous screeching against Christianity.).
      By these nutjobs, religion is responsible for all the war and oppression in the world. (I trust everyone here knows that’s nonsense?)
      I think the CIA calls it “blowback”, M… 😀 )
      Vicky

  5. joe90 5

    these international missionaries of hate couldn’t get a hearing here

    NZ Conservative, the baiters blog, kg, fearfacts and almost daily Kbog carries the message.

    And newstime.co.nz is devoted to anti-Islam rhetoric, links to US hate mongers Geller and Spencer and, according to dnc.org.nz, the domain is held anonymously.

    • Tigger 5.1

      Agreed, the degree might not survive here but I have definitely noticed a hardening of opinion against any minority in the past two years. Conversative governments by nature want to drive a wedge against the us/them in order to maintain control. Expect more bashing based on religion, race, disability and sexual orientation. I mean, look at Laws and Henry recently…

Links to post

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Government railroading Maori Land Bill through
    Maori Development Minister Te Ururoa Flavell seems determined to railroad his Te Ture Whenua Maori Bill through despite the large number of submitters in opposition to the bill, says MP Meka Whaitiri, whose Ikaroa-Rāwhiti electorate contains nearly 30 per cent ...
    4 hours ago
  • Government turns a blind eye to struggling sole parents
    Social Development Minister Anne Tolley’s claims that her Government’s work with sole parents is her biggest success are in tatters after a major increase in homelessness amongst that group, says Labour’s Social Development spokesperson Carmel Sepuloni. “Anne Tolley is seriously ...
    5 hours ago
  • Time has come for state apology on abuse
    Labour is today calling on the Government to issue an apology for historic abuse in state institutions. Speaking after the launch of Elizabeth Stanley’s book “The Road to Hell; state violence against Children in Post-war New Zealand”, Labour’s Justice spokesperson ...
    5 hours ago
  • It’s OK to have a few slaves, just not too many? Minimum wage loophole hasn’t gone away
    New Zealand still needs legislation to ensure adult New Zealanders are not exploited by being taken on as contractors for less than the equivalent of the minimum wage, says Labour list MP David Parker.  “My Minimum Wage (Contractor Remuneration) Amendment ...
    6 hours ago
  • Lessons from the Future of Work Commission: Building Wealth from the Ground Up
    Good morning, and thank you for attending today’s Future of Work Seminar here in Wellington. I want to particularly acknowledge Beth Houston who has spent many hours pulling together the programme for today’s event, and to Olivier and the staff ...
    8 hours ago
  • Backbencher Matt’s Bill is a Doocey
    The latest National Member’s Bill pulled from the ballot is yet another waste of Parliament’s time and shows the Government’s contempt for the House and the public with much more important issues needing debate, says Labour’s Shadow Leader of the ...
    1 day ago
  • Gun laws creaking under the strain
     Questions have to be asked  after surprising revelations at the Law and Order Select Committee about the police and their ability to manage the gun problem in New Zealand, says Labour’s Police spokesperson Stuart Nash.  “The lack of resources is ...
    1 day ago
  • Most homeless are working poor – Otago Uni
    The finding by Otago University researcher Dr Kate Amore that most homeless people are in work or study is one of the most shocking aspects of the housing crisis, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “Social service agencies report many ...
    1 day ago
  • Māori seats entrenched by Tirikatene Bill
    National and the Māori Party need to support my member’s Bill which is designed to entrench the Māori electorate seats in Parliament, Labour’s Te Tai Tonga MP Rino Tirikatene says. “Under the Electoral Act the provisions establishing the general electorates ...
    1 day ago
  • Trade dumping bill could hurt NZ industries
    The Commerce Select Committee is currently hearing submissions on the Trade (Anti-dumping and Countervailing Duties) Amendment Bill. This bill worries me. I flagged some major concerns during its first reading.   I am now reading submissions from NZ Steel, ...
    GreensBy Mojo Mathers
    2 days ago
  • Just 8 per cent of work visas for skills shortages
    Just 16,000 – or 8 per cent – of the 209,000 work visas issued last year were for occupations for which there is an identified skills shortage, says Labour Immigration spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway. “The overwhelming majority of the record number ...
    2 days ago
  • Hard won agreement shouldn’t be thrown away
    The Government should ignore talk across the Tasman about doing away with the labelling of GM free products, says Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King. “Labelling of genetically modified products was a hard won agreement in 2001 by Australian and the ...
    2 days ago
  • National’s privatisation Trojan horse
     The National government is using the need to modernise the school system as a Trojan horse for privatisation and an end to free public education as we know it, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says.  “There is no doubt that ...
    2 days ago
  • Shameless land-banking ads show need for crackdown
    The fact that more than 300 sections are shamelessly being advertised on Trade Me as land-banking opportunities during a housing crisis shows the need for a crackdown on property speculators, Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little says. “Of the 328 ...
    2 days ago
  • Standard and Poor’s warning of housing crisis impact on banks
    The National Government’s failure to address the housing crisis is leading to dire warnings from ratings agency Standard and Poor’s about the impact on the strength of the economy and New Zealand banks, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “Standard ...
    2 days ago
  • Ihumatao needs action not sympathy
    The Petition of Save Our Unique Landscape (SOUL) calling on Parliament to revoke Special Housing Area 62 in order to protect the Ihumatao Peninsula and Stonefields, has fallen on deaf ears, says the Labour MP for Mangere Su’a William Sio.  ...
    2 days ago
  • Student visa fraud & exploitation must stop
    The Government must act immediately to end fraud and exploitation of international students that threatens to damage New Zealand’s reputation, Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little says. ...
    3 days ago
  • Government needs to show leadership in reviewing monetary policy
    The Reserve Bank’s struggles to meet its inflation target, the rising exchange rate and the continued housing crisis shows current monetary policy needs to be reviewed - with amendments to the policy targets agreement a bare minimum, says Labour’s Finance ...
    3 days ago
  • Slash and burn of special education support
    Slashing the support for school age children with special needs is no way to fund earlier intervention, Labour’s Education Spokesperson Chris Hipkins says.  “National’s latest plan to slash funding for children with special needs over the age of 7 in ...
    4 days ago
  • National’s Pasifika MPs must have free vote
      Pacific people will not take kindly to the Government whipping their Pacific MPs to vote in favour of a  Bill that will allow Sunday trading  at Easter, says Labour’s Pacific Island Affairs spokesperson Su’a William Sio.  “We are seeing ...
    6 days ago
  • Maritime Crimes Bill – balancing security and free speech
    Parliament is currently considering the Maritime Crimes Amendment Bill, which would bring New Zealand up to date with current international rules about maritime security. The debate around the Bill reflects two valid issues: legitimate counter-terrorism measures and the right to ...
    GreensBy Kennedy Graham
    1 week ago
  • Teachers’ low wages at the centre of shortages
      Figures that show teachers’ wages have grown the slowest of all occupations is at the heart of the current teacher shortage, says Labour’s Education Spokesperson Chris Hipkins.  In the latest Labour Cost Index, education professionals saw their wages grow ...
    1 week ago
  • Government’s Tax Law undermines common law principles
    A tax amendment being snuck in under the radar allows changes to tax issues to be driven through by the Government without Parliamentary scrutiny, says Labour’s Revenue spokesman Stuart Nash. “The amendment allows any part of the Tax Administration Act ...
    1 week ago
  • Government slippery about caption funding
      The Government has refused to apologise for taking the credit for funding Olympic Games captioning when the National Foundation for the Deaf  was responsible, says Labour’s spokesperson on Disability Issues Poto Williams.  “This shameful act of grandstanding by Ministers ...
    1 week ago
  • Default KiwiSaver investments should be reviewed
    The investments of the default KiwiSaver providers should be reviewed to make sure they are in line with New Zealanders’ values and expectations, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “Most New Zealanders would be appalled that their KiwiSaver funds are ...
    1 week ago
  • New ministry should look after all children
    The Government has today shunned well founded pleas by experts not to call its new agency the Ministry for Vulnerable Children, Labour’s Spokesperson for Children Jacinda Ardern says.  “Well respected organisations and individuals such as Children's Commissioner Judge Andrew Becroft ...
    1 week ago
  • Ratification okay but we need action
    Today’s decision to ratify the Paris agreement on Climate Change by the end of the year is all well and good but where is the plan, says Labour’s Climate Change spokesperson Megan Woods.  “The Government’s failure to plan is planning ...
    1 week ago
  • Stats changes can’t hide unemployment reality
    Today’s minor drop in unemployment numbers is nothing to celebrate given the changes made to the official numbers that cut thousands of people looking for work out of the jobless rate, says Labour’s Employment spokesperson Grant Robertson. “Making any comparisons ...
    1 week ago
  • Stats changes can’t hide unemployment reality
    Today’s minor drop in unemployment numbers is nothing to celebrate given the changes made to the official numbers that cut thousands of people looking for work out of the jobless rate, says Labour’s Employment spokesperson Grant Robertson. “Making any comparisons ...
    1 week ago
  • Auckland’s affordable homes plummet 72% under National
    Comprehensive new data from CoreLogic has found the number of homes in Auckland valued at under $600,000 has plummeted by 72 per cent since National took office, Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little says. “This data tracks the changes in ...
    1 week ago
  • Govt should face the facts not skew the facts
    National appears to be actively massaging official unemployment statistics by changing the measure for joblessness to exclude those looking online, says Labour’s Employment spokesperson Grant Robertson. “The Household Labour Force Survey, released tomorrow, no longer regards people job hunting on ...
    1 week ago
  • More voices call for review of immigration policy
    The Auckland Chamber of Commerce is the latest credible voice to call for a review of immigration and skills policy, leaving John Key increasingly isolated, says Opposition Leader Andrew Little. “The Prime Minister is rapidly becoming a man alone. He ...
    1 week ago
  • Better balance needed in Intelligence Bill
    Labour will support the NZ Intelligence and Security Bill to select committee so the issues can be debated nationwide and important amendments can be made, says Opposition Leader Andrew Little. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Serco circus has no place in NZ
    A High Court judgment proves National’s private prison agenda has failed and the Serco circus has no place in New Zealand correctional facilities, Labour’s Corrections spokesperson Kelvin Davis says. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • State house sell-off a kick in the guts for Tauranga’s homeless
    The Government’s sale of 1124 state houses in Tauranga won’t house a single extra homeless person in the city, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “Tauranga, like the rest of New Zealand, has a crisis of housing affordability and homelessness. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Axing Auckland’s affordable quota disappointing
    Auckland Council has given away a useful tool for delivering more affordable housing by voting to accept the Independent Hearing Panel’s recommendation to abolish affordable quotas for new developments, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Ae Marika! Māori Party Oath Bill fails
    The Māori Party must reconsider its relationship with National after they failed to support Marama Fox’s Treaty of Waitangi Oath bill, Labour’s Maori Development Spokesperson Kelvin Davis says. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Police Minister all platitudes no detail
    The Police Minister must explain where the budget for new police officers is coming from after continuously obfuscating, Labour’s Police spokesperson Stuart Nash says. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Lost luggage law shows National’s lost the plot
    The Government has proven it can’t address the big issues facing the tourism industry by allowing a Members Bill on lost luggage to be a priority, Labour’s Tourism spokesman Kris Faafoi said. “Nuk Korako’s Bill drawn from the Members’ Ballot ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Hiding behind the law – but can’t say which law
    National is refusing to come clean on what caused the potential trade dispute with China by hiding behind laws and trade rules they can’t even name, says Labour’s Trade and Export Growth spokesperson David Clark. “National admitted today that an ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Work visas issued for jobs workless Kiwis want
    Thousands of work visas for low-skilled jobs were issued by the Government in the past year despite tens of thousands of unemployed Kiwis looking for work in those exact occupations, Labour’s Immigration spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway says. “A comparison of the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Kiwis nationwide now paying for housing crisis
    The Government’s failure to tackle the housing crisis is now affecting the entire country with nationwide house price inflation in the past year hitting 26 per cent, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “None of National’s tinkering or half-baked, piecemeal ...
    2 weeks ago
  • OCR cut piles pressure on Government
    Today’s OCR cut must be backed by Government action on housing and economic growth, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “Reserve Bank Governor Graeme Wheeler’s monetary policy statement underlines the limits of Bill English’s economic management. He says growth is ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Government must explain the McClay delay
    Todd McClay must explain why it took two months for him to properly inform the Prime Minister about China’s potential trade retaliation, says Labour’s Trade and Export Growth spokesperson David Clark. “This may be one of the most serious trade ...
    2 weeks ago
  • OCR cut would be vote of no confidence in economy
    If Reserve Bank Governor Graeme Wheeler cuts the OCR tomorrow it would show that, despite his loudly-voiced concerns about fuelling the housing market, the stuttering economy is now a bigger concern, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “Bill English and ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Leading medical experts back Healthy Homes Bill
    Leading medical experts have today thrown their weight behind my Healthy Homes Guarantee Bill, saying it will improve the health of Kiwi kids, Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little says. “The Bill sets minimum standards for heating, insulation and ventilation ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Minister, it’s time to listen to the Auditor General
    Minister of Health Jonathan Coleman needs to listen to the independent advice of the Auditor General and review the capital charge system imposed on District Health Boards, says Labour’ Health Spokesperson Annette King.  “The capital charge on DHBs has been ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Peas explain, Minister
    The Minister of Primary Industries needs to explain how the failure of its biosecurity systems led to the Pea Weevil incursion in the Wairarapa, Labour’s Primary Industries spokesperson Damien O’Connor says “The decision to ban the growing of peas in ...
    2 weeks ago
  • PM’s police numbers wrong
    The Prime Minister has said that police numbers will increase in-line with population growth, however, the Police’s own four year strategy clearly states there are no plans to increase police numbers for the next four years, Labour’s Police spokesperson Stuart ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Ministerial double speak on GP Fees
      The Associate Health Minister Sam Lotu-Iiga was simply making it up when he claimed today that General Practitioners had been given money in the Budget to lower fees, says Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King.  “In a reply to a ...
    2 weeks ago

Public service advertisements by The Standard

Current CO2 level in the atmosphere