Ex-Oasis singer Noel Gallagher made some unusual public comments about terror and the establishment recently. Unusual only in the sense that they were true, which is a rarity when those with celebrity status talk about the disagreement we currently find ourselves in with jihadism.
Noel comes from my home city of Manchester, the same Manchester where 22 concert goers, mostly young girls, were murdered by a suicide bomber on May 22 of this year. Musicians from around the world came together to play tribute gigs and offer much appreciated solidarity and support to the city after this unthinkable crime. As to be expected though, no one involved would actually name what it was we required solidarity in the face of.
Details are still coming in after yesterday’s terror attack in Westminster and the official investigation is only just underway. I suspect I’ll be blogging and podcasting a considerable amount in the coming days and weeks about this devastating act of Islamic terror.
At the time of writing this we know that at least 4 people are dead and many more are injured. The suspect is said to be British-born and the attack has been described as ‘Islamist’ in nature by the British Prime Minister.
In the meantime, as we wait for all the details to emerge, one particular injustice caught my eye which is worth pushing back against.
The annual National Secular Society conference took place in Central London on Saturday 3rd September. As always, it was a fantastic occasion featuring some excellent guest speakers talking on important topics. It was nice to see some familiar faces and make the acquaintance of some new ones too.
I’d also like to thank those of you who approached me to say hello throughout the day – it was a pleasure meeting you all.
I’ll share some thoughts, observations and media from the conference with you. You can read about the guests in full here, but I will note a few highlights below. Read more
It’s been an interesting day or two for Maajid Nawaz of the anti-extremism think tank Quilliam. We learned via Nawaz’s Facebook page that he’d had a run in with a number of Islamist thugs in London:
Keep in mind, Nawaz is a Muslim who is a staunch opponent of Islamic extremism and spends his time championing human rights and secularism for all. The fact that doing so in 2016’s London from within the Muslim community carries such risks demonstrates that the problem is worse than most care to understand.
Mo Shafiq is a former member of the Liberal Democrat party and also runs ‘The Ramadhan Foundation’ in the UK. From what I can gather the latter role consists of little more than having a website and calling yourself a ‘foundation’.
Shafiq enjoys a steady media presence though, wheeled out as the ‘moderate’ talking head for whatever Muslim hot topic is the flavour of the day. The behaviour and views of Mo Shafiq reveal two possibilities however:
1. That the bar for what is to be considered ‘moderate’ has been set patronisingly low,
2. Media outlets are failing to adequately research or question those they deem qualified represent a community.
Back in April I reported on the tragic murder of Asad Shah, a Muslim shopkeeper from Glasgow. The usual regressive types could barely contain their excitement when faced with the prospect of an ‘Islamophobic’ hate crime. They lost all interest as soon as it was revealed that the attacker was also a Muslim, strangely. Just like they did with the Murdered Imam from Rochdale.