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The Swimsuit Issue

The Swimsuit Issue

I’ve got to hand it to Islam, it regularly forces me to confront questions I could otherwise have spent my entire life happily not giving a moment’s thought. For instance: is it ethical for the French authorities to criminalise the natural human instinct to rush to the beach cloaked from head to toe in a suffocating black body-stocking in 90 degree weather?

It’d be tempting to say ‘no’ and have done with it. I view every new prohibition as an incremental reduction in the overall freedom and liberalism of the country that enforces it. I have a general knee-jerk reaction to the introduction of bans, which is to denounce the erosion of liberty and to moan a lot.

However, in the case of the burkini – the Islamic beachwear recently banned and then unbanned by a number of French towns – I have genuinely mixed feelings which I’m going to thrash out here if only to collect my somewhat contradictory thoughts on the topic. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on September 2, 2016 in Islam, Politics

 

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Spelling Out the Obvious

Spelling Out the Obvious

For 300 years the Muslims of the Barbary States carried out the unprovoked kidnapping of more than a million Westerners; besieging their ships, raiding their towns, enslaving them and killing those whose ransoms were not paid. In 1786 U.S diplomats Thomas Jefferson and John Adams were dispatched to London to meet with Sidi Haji Abdul Rahman Adja, the ambassador of Tripoli, to enquire as to the reason for this brutality towards a country with no history of aggression towards Muslims, and in fact with no history of any kind considering that the United States had only been founded a decade prior.

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Posted by on August 5, 2016 in ISIS, Islam, Islamisim, Religion

 

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A Letter to the Future

A Letter to the Future

I’m writing this article in the year 2016. Consider it a time capsule of sorts. If you’re reading this centuries or even mere decades from now, as one of the few remaining survivors of the human race, stuck in a future in which the earth is a smouldering thermonuclear wasteland, and you’re desperately searching for a historical record of how things ended up this way – it was Islam. Read the rest of this entry »

 
 

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Recommended Reading (The Blog of The Re-Enlightenment)

Recommended Reading (The Blog of The Re-Enlightenment)

Have you ever finished reading an article that so completely encapsulated your own views on a topic, and did so in such an entertaining and lucid way, that you immediately felt the compulsion to stand bolt upright and applaud? There’s something to be said for someone else expressing your views in a manner so succinct and persuasive and funny and articulate that you feel a vague sense of shame in your inability to espouse your own opinions better than someone else can. Charlie Brooker managed this when he talked about shit TV shows (although he manages it considerably less when talking about shit politics.)

This is precisely the feeling I get from reading The Blog of The Re-Enlightenment. This is a blog covering a wide range of subjects, most of which would fall under the banner of what we could probably call ‘secular politics’ – free speech, religious intrusion on society, Islamic terrorism, Islamophobia, homophobia, racism, secularism and politics (unsurprisingly.) Read the rest of this entry »

 

Weaponised Word – A Defence of Offence

Weaponised Word – A Defence of Offence

DISCLAIMER – I’m going to be quite sweary and generally pretty coarse in this article. Why? Because I can. And because it’s fun. Yep fun – you remember that don’t you? It’s pretty fucking important if you want to make it through life without opening your wrists up on a gloomy Monday.

One of my favourite TV moments of all time was in 1976 when the Sex Pistols appeared on the Bill Grundy show and bollocked the patronising old duffer for leering over their female companions. Back in ’76, someone being called a “dirty bastard” and a “fucking rotter” on tea-time telly was enough to end careers. Nowadays the BBC would probably have to broadcast Johnny Rotten ferociously sodomizing Grundy’s corpse with a whaling harpoon to elicit anything more than a handful of complaints. Read the rest of this entry »

 

24 Hours in Luton

24 Hours in Luton

It’s become something of a cliché in recent years that to criticise the doctrine of Islam, or the behaviour of its more ‘conservative’ fans, is to expose one’s self as a disgusting racist. As has been pointed out once or twice before: Islam is not a race. It’s a set of ideas. It’s impossible to convert to, or apostatise out of, a race. The obviousness of this observation does roughly nothing to dissuade the cognitively challenged from chucking accusations of racism towards anyone with the bare faced cheek to disapprove of theocratic fascism.

This idiocy was taken to dizzying new heights in Channel 4’s most recent broadcast of the fly-on-the-wall documentary series 24 Hours in Police Custody. The show takes place in Luton and surprisingly takes four series’ to get around to covering the religious tensions that plague the town. You see, Luton is something like the epicentre of Islamic extremism in the UK. The infamous image of the 7/7 bombers walking into a train station on the morning of the London Transport attacks was taken from CCTV at Luton Station. Read the rest of this entry »

 

A Lesson in Ethics – with Johnny Spooner

A Lesson in Ethics – with Johnny Spooner

Anyone masochistic enough to regularly trudge through CJ Werleman’s nauseating Twitter feed will doubtless be familiar with an objectionable hypocrite who calls himself Johnny Spooner. Mr Spooner is an ostensibly Swedish Twitter user who buzzes around Werleman’s timeline like a fly on shit. His Twitter handle is @LIFG_4_HRC (formerly @theflowerthrowe) and he divides his time relatively equally between attacking what he calls “new atheists” and effectively acting as Werleman’s fluffer.

Unfortunately for him, both of these pastimes require his adoption of grossly hypocritical positions and his assertion of cynical, irresponsible and patently dishonest statements which frequently manifest as textbook examples of logical and rhetorical fallacies.

He readily propagates the idea that by criticising Islam, atheist authors – and their supporters – inspire hate crimes against Muslims. When questioned on whether the same would be true of anti-atheist authors having any culpability for hate crimes against atheists he becomes suspiciously mute. Read the rest of this entry »