Swivel-eyed fish burst the barrel

I've been caught napping while Melanie Phillips has said some particularly dumb nonsense.


It's been picked up all over the place because it's so boneheaded - see Pickled Politics, Shuggy's Blog, Ministry of Truth (twice), Stumbling and Mumbling, and Not Saussure - but as two fish seem to have grown to be particularly enormous to the point of outgrowing their barrel, they're begging to be shot.

I was going to be brief, but bugger it.

Firstly, from 'Dying to submit':

And that is why I, a British Jew, argue that it is vital that Britain and Europe re-Christianise if they are to have any chance of defending western values.

Okay. Easy answer number one - when Britain had a more explicitly Christian population, Jewish people didn't exactly fare very well. Given that they were forced to convert or were expelled from the country and that.

Easy answer number two - Britain is already an explicitly Christian state. I'll do the little list again. Our head of state is head of a Christian church (and must be protestant Christian by law), our Prime Minister is Christian (and has to be a protestant Christian by law), most of our cabinet are Christian, the majority of our population is Christian, a number of Christian bishops are given automatic seats in the House of Lords, our national flag is made up of symbols of various Christian saints, we have a blasphemy law that only applies to Christianity, the first word of our national anthem is 'God' and the rest of its content is an extended prayer asking him to do various things for the head of the Church of England.

Easy answer number three - this has already been covered elsewhere - Melanie Phillips doesn't want to convert to Christianity herself. It's precisely because of our Christian Government's secular approach to the population's own religious beliefs that Phillips is able to make the choice to remain a non-Christian. I presume she isn't calling for the re-introduction of inquisitions, but I fear I may be too generous.

A couple of other bits:

The useful idiots who believe that only a secular society can hold off the forces of irrational belief at the heart of the Islamic jihad have got this diametrically the wrong way round.

Now, I'm only speaking for this secularist, but I think Christianity is also an example of the forces of irrational belief. To say to a secularist like me, 'Hey, you know how to fight irrational belief? Adopt an irrational belief system!' Is so dense it hurts my head.

There is something else I want to say about this idiocy, but it's relevant to the next bit I want to quote, so I'll do that first:

Dying for a cause, however noble, becomes an absolute no-no. It’s better to be dhimmi than dead – the view that has now effectively prevailed in Britain and Europe.
Now, I can only speak for myself but I'm pretty sure quite a few people on my side of the fence in this argument would agree. What Phillips has done here is used a false opposition to set up another of her strawmen. I do not accept that there is an evil force of Islamisation creeping across Europe. I think that idea is a paranoid exaggeration, believed by gullible people and pushed by racists in a similar way to the idea of a Jewish conspiracy that was popular until the right found another scapegoat.

I don't think it's 'better to be dhimmi than dead' becasuse a) I think 'dhimmi' is a horrible word, used in a similar manner to the term 'n*gger lover' and I do not accept the premise that would lead me to believe that such a thing exists in the same way Melanie Phillips does, and; b) because I do not think that 'resisting the irrational belief at the heart of the Islamic jihad' (which is a nicer way of saying 'being nasty and paranoid about Muslims') would lead to my death. Mel seems to be doing alright out of it.

It's not that I'm not prepared to die for any cause. I'm not prepared to die for your cause. Because it's not noble. It's imaginary racist shite.

But this is my favourite bit:
The Islamists, whose shrewdness and perspicacity are consistently overlooked by racist European liberals who believe that Arabs and Muslims are too backward to have anything intelligent to say [...]

Because we don't accept that the Muslims are evil and shrewd and plotting to take over the world, we're racist?

Quick heads up. It's not because we don't think they're clever enough, you numpty! It's because we don't think they're inherently evil! This is like saying, 'You're racist for not believing black people are resourceful enough to be muggers!' or, 'You're anti-semetic because you think Jews lack the shrewdness and perspicacity to be able to engage in a global conspiracy!' It's too funny.

And another thing, when anyone says Mel's racist for saying nasty things about Muslims, she argures that she can't be because, 'Islam is not a race but a religion.' But when she says her opponents do it, it suddenly becomes racist to criticise Muslims. Make your bloody mind up!
(Plus, it is bloody racist. Bartlett's Bizarre Bazaar has a good post on the subject).

At this point though, I've started to wonder whether Phillips herself believes this idiotic nonsense. It's become like watching some bloody medium on Living, where the only relevant question is not whether they can talk to the dead, but whether they know they can't. Does she know this is complete cack, or is she deluded enough to actually believe it?


Andrew Bartlett said...

Mel's view of Muslims most certainly is racist. When she talks about demographic threats, she is talking about her fear of brown-skinned babies.

I wrote about this here.

Five Chinese Crackers said...

Oh, I don't doubt that for a second - I was just repeating her own defence.

The 'Islam is not a race' argument slips quite often, like it does here. The Mail's headline after Aishah Azmi lost her case mentioned it being an important decision for race relations despite using the 'religion not a race' argument. The Telegraph had an interview with Shabina Begum earlier this year that accidentally said, "There you have the dilemma for British Asian youth: the veil of Islam versus the exposure of BBC1"

I think some quotation marks and a quick edit might be called for though. And a link. Thanks.