Friday, October 16, 2009
Geert Wilders-Triumph for Freedom
I would have had more sympathy for the UK government's actions in trying to stop Geert Wilders entering the country if it had been on the grounds of that dodgy hairstyle, but banning him because he doesn't like Islam was illiberal and totalitarian. Look at the number of people in this country now, be they ethnic British, of Asian descent or others, who seem to despise our Western culture but have the freedom to come and go as they please and, more importantly to say what they please.
The problem is that the word 'hatred' is used to attack anybody who dislikes or opposes an idea or, God forbid,a fundmantal tenet of political correctness. To 'hate' now is a sin tantamount to 'racism' or 'homophobia'. But did we not hate the Nazis (Germans) in the last World War and wasn't that good? Did we not hate communism in the cold war which was good? Although the freedoms we preserved by that hatred are now being obliterated by Labour, and soon to be further obliterated when the New Tories take power, an instinct for survival involves hatred of enemies, perceived or otherwise.
Wilders' sin seems to be equating Islam, or the Koran, with terrorism. A simplistic argument that I would seriously question. I would question it as I question anybody who claims that Irish people were terrorists in the '70s and '80s, or that Catholics were terrorists in that period. There were some Catholics who were terrorists, some Irishmen who were terrorists, some Irish Catholics who were terrorists, but thankfully a small minority. I believe that to be the case with Muslims and that Wilder's argument is fundamentally flawed.
Having said that I would like to decide for myself if Wilders' argument is so fundamentally flawed or whether the politicains and media are just painting him as a hate figure. I would like the freedom to actually make up my own mind, after all, politicians are the first to decry the objectivity of the media when it suits them, so why should I blindly accept what they say? I think I'm grown up enough to hear Wildes and make my own mind up, I don't need'protecting'.
A further problem I have with the government's suppression of free speech in the Wilders' case is Afghanistan. We are fighting a war where, pretend otherwise if you will, but a form of Islam is driving the main forces attacking our soldiers. The reaction of militant Islamic groups in this country shows that a sizeable element of British Muslims support the extremists and hate the West. So we can fight an unjust war in Afghanistan, killing Muslims every day and our soldiers being killed, but the government tried to ban a Dutch politician, who articulates opposition to Islam, from entering the country.
Finally, the BBC could go for a real double whammy. Get Wilders on Question Time next week when Nick Griffin of the BNP is on. That would be fun.