The Hereford Mosque debacle.
The islamic group in Hereford wants to build a mosque/community centre whatever. Now I believe that people should be allowed to worship whatever sky pixie they choose but sadly there is something about Islam that raises genuine concerns (probably the propensity to violence although NOT ALL muslims are violent nutters.) When dealing with religions and races it’s vitally important to separate the individual from the ideologies. To give an analogy I don’t like socialism but I’ll still have a beer with a socialist.
Now I’ll be quite frank I don’t like much of Islam. That is partly because I’ve seen the islamification of formerly mixed areas and it hasn’t improved them not for the muslim or the non muslim. I’m very glad I moved away from an area where Islam was dominant as it does affect issues such as free speech, freedom of action the position and safety of women and LGBT people etc etc. Oh and there’s the violence thing as well.
I’m very aware of Islam’s history its actions and it’s modus operandi. I don’t like it for theological reasons one of which is that the religion appears to demand unquestioning submission to the Islamic God. That is NOT healthy especially when Islamic culture is placed within free societies as it then comes into conflict with the mores of the community that surrounds it especially when the community is broadly secular and because of this becomes more insular and ghettoised. This benefits no one not muslim or non muslim. I don’t like Islam for political reasons (an islamic state is not one I would want to live in and neither would many muslims or non muslims to be quite honest.) I don’t like the expansionist arrogance of Islam although I recognise that in the past Christianity and ancient Judaism shared a similar way of operation.
I also dislike Islam because I perceive it as a threat as do many others. Certain types of Islam are a clear and present danger but some are not it’s just a case of getting educated enough to distinguish between the two types.
Now to the positive. There are good muslims and bad muslims and I can’t say it enough that you need to separate the individual from the ideology. Those who have an enquiring and questioning attitude to Islam I don’t have a problem with it’s the total submitters I have an issue with. Also in a lot of cases a person is a decent person in spite of their religious belief rather than because of it.
In this case I’m worried as all many of us know about the group and the proposal so far is as follows
1. They’ve got feet under table in Kindle Centre and there may be issues as to how much influence the islamic group has on the management. This brings up issues of keeping secular public spaces just that, secular. The Kindle Centre promoting friday prayers smacks of a lot of influence with centre management. I’d be grateful for an explanation.
2. The local rent seeking Diversity officer wants it (sometimes diversity officers make things worse). Some of us can respect difference but to not want to be forcibily ‘Culturally Diversified’ or enriched.
3. The BBC is cheerleading for it.
4. There appears to have been trolling for funds by someone on behalf of or using the name of the mosque on an Islamic extremist / one NOT completly opposed to jihad, site – bad bad sign.
Check out the Hereford Times thread. It’s got the lot, it’s got knee jerk lefties, Islamoloons, offence takers the odd anti Jihadist and more than a few beer fuelled posts from me.
There are also a few good people on there who are thoughtful and who are more than welcome here. The loonies I’m just going to laugh at 🙂
If I’m wrong about any of this I will put my hands up and admit when I am but I’m going to take a lot of convincing that there are no underlying problems here both with the local Islamic community or with it’s interreaction with the local authority. In a lot of the country Islam has lost the trust of many non muslims and it is vital that hard questions are answered.
For those of you who are opposed to the mosque all I can say is if you are going to protest do it peacefully, legally, cleverly and with a bit of style.. Don’t be a complete dickhead and give it large with threats.
To those who want the mosque I would ask you to think why there are objections and work towards a situation where trust can return.