Islamophobia Watch

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Documenting anti-Muslim bigotry
Updated: 3 hours 19 min ago

‘Why are we so scared of offending Muslims?’ demands Hitchens

25 June, 2015 - 22:10

Hitchens“Islamic belief, however simply or modestly it may be stated, is an extreme position to begin with. No human being can possibly claim to know that there is a God at all, or that there are, or were, any other gods to be repudiated…. it is even further beyond the cognitive capacity of any person to claim without embarrassment that the lord of creation spoke his ultimate words to an unlettered merchant in seventh-century Arabia. Those who utter such fantastic braggings, however many times a day they do so, can by definition have no idea what they are talking about….

“Why, then, should we be commanded to ‘respect’ those who insist that they alone know something that is both unknowable and unfalsifiable? Something, furthermore, that can turn in an instant into a license for murder and rape?”

Christopher Hitchens in Slate, 30 July 2007

Hitchens would of course claim that he is hostile to all religions, not just Islam. Somehow, though, I can’t see him putting his name to a piece subtitled “Why are we so scared of offending Jews?”

MCB statement on BNP’s election to European Parliament

13 April, 2015 - 10:45

MCB Alarmed Over Neo-Nazi victory

The Muslim Council of Britain (MCB) today joined other British people in voicing their alarm and concern as the British National Party (BNP) gained its first two seats in the European parliament. This is a party that has a history of whipping up hatred against black people, Asians, Jews, Muslims and immigrants and has described Islam as “a vicious, wicked faith”.

Unlike other European countries, the UK has, in the past, prided itself in refusing to send MEPs who belonged to the far-right. Today we have reached a sad and historic milestone where we can no longer claim that racism has no place on our political landscape.

Dr Muhammad Abdul Bari, Secretary-General of the Muslim Council of Britain said: “This is a sad day for British politics. The news of the election of far-right MEPs comes at a time when we mark the 65th anniversary of D-Day, celebrating the heroism of those who fought the same hatred and fascism and racism we are witnessing today”.

“They now have a platform and taxpayer resources to perpetuate hate. They now have the ability to join racists and fascists in continental Europe to create a coalition of racists and Islamophobes. I call on all mainstream parties, and all British people, Muslims included, to come together to ensure we challenge the far right. We must ensure that this is a mere blip, and not a milestone, in British politics”.

MCB press release, 8 June 2009

Islamic school ban sparks protest in Sydney

9 April, 2015 - 21:18

Hundreds of people have protested against a government’s decision to scrap plans to build an Islamic school in Australia’s biggest city, Sydney. Parents and prospective students have said the decision was unfair and racist.

Plans to build an Islamic school for 1,200 students in the Sydney suburb of Bass Hill survived objections from residents, the local council and legal challenges only to be scrapped at the last minute by the New South Wales government. Construction was due to begin but the state has intervened to buy back the land it sold several years ago.

Busloads of angry parents and their children have demonstrated outside the education department, calling on the authorities to allow the project to go ahead. A spokesman for the protestors, Rafik Hussein, says the government has made a big mistake. “We do not accept that decision. It is un-Australian,” Mr Hussein said

Some campaigners have said the debate has been laced with racial and religious intolerance. Supporters of the plan to build the Islamic school believe that residents’ concerns about noise and traffic congestion have become a euphemism for prejudice.

BBC News, 27 July 2009

See also ABC News, 24 July 2009