The fruits of nationalism – racism and the tram lady
Racism is something that simmers under the surface in British society
A YouTube video which shows a white woman openly abusing Blacks, Poles and Asians on a tram in Croydon clearly shows that many people no longer think twice about abusing people, racially or otherwise. The video which has now gone viral has caused a storm with many viewers labelling the woman a disgrace for using abusive language in the presence of her child. The police have got involved and arrested a woman in connection with the video. Another video then surfaced showing a woman abusing people on a train to Manchester
Whilst the abusive nature of the video is getting all the attention the unfortunate truth is that it is nothing more than what most ethnic minorities have experienced living in this country. Many can relate to being racially abused at the first sign of a disagreement whether that be over a parking space or something else, it seems racism is something that simmers under the surface in British society and it doesn’t take much for it to rear its ugly head.
Indeed racism has been in the news for the last few weeks:
- John Terry and Luis Suarez have been accused with racially abusing opposition players during Premier league matches
- Sepp Blatter, in an interview with Al-Jazeera, indicated that on field racism can easily be resolved with a shake of the hand at the end of the match, saying that it is just part of the game
Whilst all this was taking place the trial of two men accused of killing the black teenager Stephen Lawrence in 1993 began. This represents quite possibly the last chance for the family of Lawrence to see anyone punished for his murder. The police force was accused of being institutionally racist by the commission set up to investigate the initial failings of the murder case.
The killing of Mark Dugan and subsequent distrust and displeasure shown by the black community towards police actions shows not everyone would agree that racism is no longer a problem in British society. Add to this the openly Islamophobic attitude of politicians, media and police and it paints a shocking picture of minority intolerance in society.
Western societies are struggling to reconcile the promotion of nationalism and the resulting ‘xenophobia’ and racism that accompanies it. When former UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown talked about “British jobs for British workers”, some took it as a green light to vent against ‘non-British’ workers, though many are hard working tax payers who are here legally.
The current economic recession and austerity measures will only exacerbate the kind of view especially when the politicians spend most of time attempting to deflect the blame onto those coming into the UK from abroad.
Islam forbids slander and backbiting and also forbids abuse of others, racism and intolerance towards minorities such as non-Muslims. The following evidences address many of the problems Western societies have been attempting to address for decades and have failed miserably.
“O you who believe! Avoid much suspicion, for some suspicions are a sin. Do not spy on one another, nor backbite one another. Would one of you love to eat the flesh of his dead brother? Nay, you would abhor it, [so similarly, avoid backbiting]. And fear Allah. Indeed, Allah is Most Forgiving, Most Merciful.” Qur’an, [49:12]
“He does not utter a [single] word, except that there is, with him, [an angel] ready and waiting [to record it].” Qur’an, [50:18]
“Mankind! We created you from a male and female, and made you into peoples and tribes so that you might come to know each other. The noblest among you in God’s sight is that one of you who best performs his duty. God is All-Knowing, All-Aware.” (The Qur’an , 49:13)
These evidences are self-explanatory and show Islam’s high regard of upholding a civilised society, one free of racism , slander and abuse. Furthermore to this the Islamic society is built upon Taqwa where Muslims are aware of the prohibition of any kind of abuse of others and Muslims are encouraged to enjoin the good and forbid the evil. So racism is not prevented only through the judiciary but also through a high sense of moral obligation that society feels towards stamping these kind of uncivilised actions at the root.