Boris to take away Muslim Children for “thought abuse”.
Boris Johnson is considered by some to be a clever and talented politician, hiding behind the façade of a bumbling fool. Every now and again, the Mayor of London reminds everyone that he may actually be a bumbling fool masquerading as a politician. It seems unlikely that anything that he ever comes up with has been well thought through and his latest Telegraph column on the radicalization of children by their parents at first glance seems to be him playing to type.
But perhaps we are judging Boris too quickly, unnecessarily stereotyping him and jumping to unfair superficial conclusions without deeply considering what he has to say. We certainly would not want to misunderstand him or misrepresent his views as this might cause people to have a negative view of the Mayor unfairly. So far he hasn’t really clarified his viewpoint so perhaps we could try to do it for him.
Let’s ignore Boris’ example of Lee Rigby’s killers as both Michael’s came from Christian families, and consider his argument on its merits. Let us say that the argument goes like this: “Some Muslims believe in an extreme violent ideology that encourages them to fight against the infidels of the Western World by any possible means including the suicide bombing of civilians. These people have children and children are impressionable, so even if these people cannot radicalize others, they might succeed in radicalizing their own children and those children could one day become a threat to society. This radicalization should be deemed a new kind of child abuse, which for the sake of brevity we could call ‘thought abuse.’ As these children are being abused, they should be taken from their parents and into care to protect them from their parents and protect the wider society from them.” Will that do Boris? Or do you prefer your version clouded with emotional hyperbole and confusing rhetoric.
So now all we need to know to be fair to Boris is to understand what he proposes will constitute radicalization. The first thing that is abundantly clear from the Mayor’s article is that radicalization applies to Muslims only so all of the non-Muslim parents reading can rest easy as this does not apply to them. They may be members of extreme far right parties and indoctrinate their children with any hate-filled irrational rubbish they like, providing they are not Muslim, it doesn’t matter (yet).
The second thing that appears to be clear is that the parents do not need to be guilty of any crime or involved in terrorism. If they were, then presumably they would have been the subject of some sort of investigation and charge, so now we know he is talking about Muslim parents who have not broken the law. The parents could be loving, supportive, responsible and dedicated parents with very happy children. Presumably, the sinister nature of this abuse is that it has no direct relationship to the actual wellbeing of the child but simply the thoughts that the child may or may not carry. This form of “abuse” does not incur physical or emotional harm. It just makes them “think wrongly.”
The third thing we need to know is, what those thoughts are that Boris doesn’t want communicated to children. What can law abiding Muslim parents safely teach their children before Boris’ babysnatchers come knocking at the door to take them all away?
He hasn’t actually clarified this so let’s play it safe. If you are Muslim, do not under any circumstances talk to your children about Jihad, Sharia law, the Ummah, the Khilafah, Israel, Palestine, British or American Imperialism, any verse in the Qur’an that refers to anything other than morals and praying, and anything else that you reason might possibly be construed by Boris Johnson as a radicalized view. Boris mentioned in an article he wrote for the Spectator magazine that; “To any non-Muslim reader of the Koran, Islamophobia – fear of Islam – seems a natural reaction, and, indeed, exactly what that text is intended to provoke. Judged purely on its scripture – to say nothing of what is preached in the mosques – it is the most viciously sectarian of all religions in its heartlessness towards unbelievers…” (http://www.spectator.co.uk/features/13914/just-don’t-call-it-war).
Clearly he has completely misunderstood the Qur’an and misrepresents it! “The text” is intended to provoke consciousness of Allah (swt) and fear of his punishment, not of Islam or Muslims. But considering the vulnerable position of the Muslims in this country, perhaps it would be better not to mention Islam to your children at all. Weekend Islamic classes should be avoided. Boys should wear trousers that extend beyond the ankles and girls should wear a dress that does not reach the ankles. Strictly no hijab wearing. Muslim parents must let everyone know where their loyalties lie. Wearing a British flag, a broach or cufflinks will suffice; and surround yourself as much as possible with non-Muslim white friends.
Muslims will be surprised to learn that the definition of child abuse needs to be broadened. Child abuse could be indoctrinating your child to think in such a way that many years from now leads that child to become a murderer, or a rapist, or a thief or a rich man who squanders corruptly obtained wealth on personal pleasures to the detriment of the masses. Muslim parents will be even more surprised to learn that it only applies to Muslims and could lead to their children being taken away. They could be found guilty of abusing their children with thoughts and according to Boris, the liberal state needs to confront them.
Fortunately the British state has a fantastic record of looking after vulnerable children. Set aside the fact that true child abuse leading to the death of infants and toddlers has occurred a little too frequently; if they get past those early years, a life of ease, education, love and pleasure awaits them being cared for by the state. Presumably there are no ends of foster parents out there ready and waiting to invite these radicalized children into their homes, well able to tackle those thoughts. Care homes are hugely undersubscribed currently and so well run that many of the carers would relish the challenge of potentially thousands of children flooding into the care system from families with Boris’ “bad thoughts.” Things are working so well at the moment that it wouldn’t have the slightest impact on the resources devoted to children who are being physically, sexually or emotionally abused at home sometimes leading to their death.
This policy has been tried and tested, most notably in the Soviet Union. You might be surprised that Boris would borrow policies from Stalin, but beggars can’t be choosers. The Soviet’s had a network of informants, throughout the public sphere, whether it be healthcare, education or the civil service and you could certainly be sent to Siberia if you taught your children ideas not in keeping with the Soviet ethos. Most of the Muslim world copied the Soviet’s for much the same reasons that Boris wants to and now he’s proposing something similar.
Where would the line be drawn? Presumably you would have to prove that harm had been done. But the harm here is to believe in something that might be harmful in the future, which is impossible to prove. It would come down to removing children from parents if you didn’t like what their parents believed in. Why would any Muslim in this country trust a British Politician to do that?
The Mayor couldn’t give a single example in his column of a child that had been radicalized by his parents, only a younger sibling who was “well on the way to radicalization”. That is a meaningless example. There are no parents who teach their children hatred and murder. This only exists inside Boris Johnson’s mind. What if he teaches his children that Muslims teach their children to hate non-Muslims! His children might believe that Muslims are dangerous and begin to hate them. Perhaps, one day, the Mayor’s children might be guilty of violence towards an innocent Muslim because of their fathers influence. Perhaps we should take his children into care now, just in case.