A recent article of mine had something of a vogue and it was taken-up by the Devil himself in his Kitchen. It was also taken-up by an unofficial BNP blog in Wigan. Hmm… Chris Mounsey is a star of the Libertarian blogging world and the BNP are a bunch of National Socialists who apart from their racism have a large number of very strange and dangerous policies. Well, that’s the ‘net for you and everyone is welcome to read my rants or Cats’ mewlings and frankly, the more the merrier. Because this is not meant as an echo chamber. If possible I would like people to read this and, well, change, as Perry de Havilland of Samizdata (another star of the libertarian blog scene) would put it, their “metacontext”.
The sad truth is that the BNP and the likes of RESPECT are basically the same thing. Their economic policies are both boilerplate socialism and both equate criticism of Islam with racism. I don’t and I frankly find the conflation of race and idealogy to be one of the strangest enduring fallacies of the age. You can see something similar in the current US election campaign. The very idea that a Black American might vote for McCain is seen as staggering.
I am worried about one thing in particular. There are many good anti-jihadi websites out there. Jihadwatch and LGF spring to mind (though least said about LGF’s commentariat soonest mended) but there are also nutters and oportunists such as Gates of Vienna (which sometimes seems to be almost gleefully anticipating a European Christian vs. Muslim Civil War). GoV is based in the USA and I guess it’s bloggers are planning on getting in beer and pretzels and watching the fun unfold on CNN.
And this is the problem. I am anti-jihad. I am appalled at some of the allowances being made to Muslims in this country. I am appalled at the, for want of a better word, Muslim pork-barrels we pay to try and keep them sweet (or unradicalized as the jargon goes). I am dissapointed by the way in which none of our mainstream political parties or the mainstream media is prepared to say the unsayable (for fear of being deemed racist or something*) and at the heart of the problem of terrorism and legal jihad and the hectoring and harrassment indulged in by various Islamists is Islamic all the way back to the Qu’ran and Muhammed.
But I am not prepared to throw the baby out with the bathwater and turn in desperation to the Xenophobia and hatred and poisonous nationalism of the likes of the BNP as the likes of Gates of Vienna sometimes suggests we may have to. If this blogs posts on Islam serve any purpose it is to demonstrate that it is possible to find Islam a nasty and dangerous ideology without having to embrace an equally nasty and dangerous ideology and that being anti-jihad doesn’t automatically make you a racist loon or ultra-nationalist.
*Or indeed suffer the fate of Salman Rushdie or Theo van Gogh.