My Politics; Liberals, Muslims & Conservatives

I describe myself as a liberal, but when I do I invariably mean it in the truest sense of the word, not in the sense of liberal political parties, who these days seem to have little and less in common with Liberalism. So when I say I’m a liberal, I really mean the following; I believe we’re all born equal, gender or sexual orientation doesn’t matter a damn, people should be free to follow whichever religion they choose, and people should be free to say whatever the hell they please (that’s freedom of speech to you) even if it results in criticism.

However, since none of the political parties these days who call themselves ‘liberal’ come even close to representing my own beliefs, I usually end up voting Conservative, and will admit that as something of a traditionalist, I suppose my political affiliation does sit centre-right. ‘Conservative’, however, is a dirty word in the modern day, and I was foolish to describe myself as such when writing about the murder of Drummer Lee Rigby, whose funeral was today. I should have known that my American readers would jump on the ‘C’ word at once, and especially as I was dealing with the issue of Islam, it was never going to end well, really. It didn’t matter what I wrote; it wasn’t read (and the responses I got proved the truth of that) and they let their image of me as a conservative rootin’ tootin’ Republican (despite the fact that I’m British) fill their head as they typed out their responses.

For example, in my old article about Drummer Rigby’s death, I was obviously quite critical of Islamism and the seeming incompatibility of the Muslim community in Britain, something that other religious or ethnic minorities in our country don’t seem to share. However, I was equally critical of the right-wingers who attack innocent Muslim people, burn mosques and mix their religious intolerance and racism with violence. I branded them ‘English white trash’, called their actions ‘thuggery’ and more of the same…go and read it, and see for yourself. You’ll even note I made reference to my Muslim friends, but of course that was conveniently forgotten/ignored.

Are you listening, Lefty Yanks? Criticism for both sides. Equality. That’s what democracy should be, don’t you agree? ‘Land of the Free’ indeed…

I referred to the people who choose to ignore the problems in the Islamic community as “liberals” because in my mind, they aren’t liberal, despite what they might call themselves. A true liberal would examine the views of both sides before passing judgment, instead of venerating the Islamic community as somehow being superior to our own society (that’s not bias, that’s truth. If you lived under Blair’s Britain, you’d know that).

The point is, what I wrote wasn’t read. The slightest criticism of Islam resulted in me being branded a right-wing lunatic (what’s even funnier is that I said the exact same thing in my blog post; “criticism of Islam usually results in one being branded a right-wing lunatic”. Amazing how after writing that, my critics then seemed to consider me exactly that). There have been (and still are) imams who preach the destruction of the British state and the conversion of the British people to their religion and have rallies to this effect, admittedly infrequently but the fact that they’ve been allowed to take place speaks volumes. As much as I despise them, the far-right EDL and BNP have held rallies of their own calling for harsher punishment for Islamic terrorists are the reduction of their cultural influence, and many of these rallies have resulted in arrests made (read that again, lefty Yanks/whoever the hell you are. That’s right, it says ‘as much as I despise them’. Throw me in with their lot, will you?). Under our ‘democratic’ state, our culture and history is allowed to be criticised by those of foreign nationality and religion but anything directed towards anyone of the same means you’re an intolerant racist.

Look at feminists, for example. In the truest sense of the word, I’m a feminist; I believe women can do jobs just as well as men (and, in many cases, a damn sight better) and so should be paid the same wages, and I believe cutting them out of society or dismissing the opinions of women just because of their sex is immoral and, above all, undemocratic. So why is it then that feminists, despite their vocality, never seem able to criticise the treatment of Muslim women? The style of dress, the treatment in society, their perceived inferiority…somehow, we’re told that revealing only the eyes is ’empowering’. What utter bollocks.

I’m a liberal, and I want to live in a world where everyone can believe what they want, but not at the expense of other people. If Muslim women want to walk around with buckets on their heads, fine, but I’d like to hear it from them, not their menfolk nor a British socialist politician. That’s why I was so upset over Drummer Rigby’s death. Oh, I’m sure that the lunatics who killed him in the name of their imaginary friend really thought he was a legitimate target because he was a soldier, but to dismiss it as ‘fair enough’ and to equate the civilised streets of a Western capital city with the battlefields of Afghanistan is ignorant and unspeakably foolish.

(While we’re on the subject, here’s a little something about Afghanistan you may not know/deliberately ignored. The regular Afghan people did not enjoy the Taliban government, and many appreciate the aid given to them by ISAF forces. My friends who’ve come back tell me how people have cried with joy because their daughters can now go to school, and did you know the Taliban tried to destroy a hydro-electric dam in Helmand to deny the area of electricity? “Murdering Muslims”; no, defending them. Apart from the lunatic American soldiers who view Islam as the enemy, but there, that’s a problem for the Yanks, and the management of the war since ’01 is another story entirely.)

In the eyes of many I’m not a liberal because I criticise people (and not just Muslims, whatever the underlying theme of this post), and a modern liberal does no such thing. No, the modern liberal abandons the culture of his country and dismisses history as irrelevant because as a resident in the modern age, he intrinsically knows better. Look at the European Union, for example, and its ridiculous Human Rights laws, which for some reason have been allowed to dominate our islands. It’s a bit rich when the Europeans (amongst whom we British don’t count ourselves at times like this) who gave the world the Crusades, Napoleonic aggression, the Inquisition and the Holocaust are lecturing us on human rights (Christ, what did they fight those two wars for?).

I lament for Britain and its population, especially as I know I’ll likely never live here again. I’ve been here the last few weeks and know that my time in Britain (on a permanent basis, anyway) is long since over, and that my future lies elsewhere. But I’ll take the liberal values and gentlemanly conduct that my country once held dear with me always, and damn the Georgians who disagree with me.

About tcjogden69

Former soldier, current boxing trainer/student living in Tbilisi.
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2 Responses to My Politics; Liberals, Muslims & Conservatives

  1. panoptical says:

    “I’m sure that the lunatics who killed him in the name of their imaginary friend really thought he was a legitimate target because he was a soldier”

    The two men who killed Rigby claimed they did so to avenge the deaths of Muslims killed by British soldiers.

    The double standard is that when Christians systematically kill Muslims you have some justification for it, but when Muslims kill Christians you are unwilling to even consider the actual reasons behind the attacks and instead claim that it represents a problem with Muslim ideology or with a lunatic fringe within the Muslim community.

    In your mind, London and Afghanistan are not even in the same category and what happens in one place cannot be compared to what happens in the other. The purpose of terrorism is to disabuse you of that notion, not to appease God or promote an ideology. When Westerners stop systematically behaving as if a Christian life matters more than a Muslim life, that’s when (Muslim) terrorism will be stopped, and not a second before.

    Since you are apparently judging Christians and Muslims not only by different standards, but by different kinds of standards, that makes me think that despite your protestations, you are actually much less tolerant than you think you are.

    • tcjogden69 says:

      ‘When Westerners stop behaving as if a Christian life matters more than a Muslim life’ – I can’t think any example wherein that’s happened. I do though know plenty of people who’ve defended Muslim villages under attack by the Taliban and Al-Qaeda; if I’m applied double standards to Muslims it’s only because there are two types of Muslims: the normal people who are no different from people of other religions or races and the ones who can’t seem to get out of a medieval mindset.

      No, London and Afghanistan are not in the same category. What a ridiculous notion. How could they be? One is a warzone (at least parts of it, anyway) and the other is (allegedly) a civilised capital city. Furthermore, you really need to stop thinking that Western soldiers go to Afghanistan to shoot up Muslims (ha! As if you can. I know you, my boy). Maybe a few Americans have done that, but no soldier form our Army has (nor will do, I’d be willing to bet) and the working relationship between regular Afghan people and British forces remains strong.

      It’s not as simple as ‘Muslims killing Christians’ or vice versa. That does the situation no justice whatsoever, since in my mind it implies that Muslims on the whole approve of extremism, and that’s a sign of intolerance on your part. No, what I’m judging the murders of Fusilier Rigby by (and let’s give the man his rank as a mark of respect shall we?) is that they broke the law of our country because they believed British soldiers kill Muslims. Which of course they do; they’ve inflicted devastating casualties on the Taliban and Al-Qaeda. But let me put it like this: the Muslims killed by Western forces in no way represent any kind of majority of the Muslim people, and their ideology belongs in an age that ended centuries ago. Believe you me my lad, if the killers had been white ‘Christians’ (whatever the hell that means anymore) who murdered anyone at all for the reason that they sympathised with those who would bring us back to the Dark Ages my outrage would be just as strong.

      It’s not about terrorism, it’s about crime, and this kind of crime when someone is murdered in the street can’t be tolerated, religious motivation or no. The minute we stop trying to punish criminals and instead put our efforts into ‘understanding’ them, we’re lost (well, actually, that was badly phrased. We’ve been to trying to ‘understand’ criminals for years instead of having real punishment, and Britain has been lost for over a decade). To try and ‘understand’ and sympathise with these lowlife…well, it doesn’t do a fat lot for deterrence, knowing that instead of punishment for murder they can expect a sympathetic audience. Say, though, don’t you think it’s interesting that they waited until he was unarmed and unready? I’d have loved to have seen them have tried it when he was in uniform and armed to the teeth. And don’t say ‘Western soldiers kill civilians!’ as a repost. Soldiers don’t target civilians, whatever you may prefer to think (ours don’t, anyway).

      Well, my lad, I could write more but it wouldn’t make a damn bit of difference. I’ll not change your mind and hear you condemn Fusilier Rigby’s death for what it was; a cowardly act of murder on the streets of a civilised city (Christ! And you a New Yorker, too). Not as liberal as I think I am, eh? I’ll be the judge of that, my boy. Well, nor are you as all-knowing and all-understanding as you might consider yourself, either. I think part of it is an American thing. There’s never a middle ground with any of you (well, except my mate Jon, but there’s an exception to every rule, hey?). You’re either right-wing gun-toting Republican maniacs or you’re Liberal apologists who just don’t want to accept that there are some very nasty bastards out there, and as much as you’d like to sit them down with a cup of tea and listen to their opinions, they’ll never admit that women should have the vote or be educated, or that freedom of speech and religion is something worth having. You wouldn’t convince them no more than I can convince you that an innocent man was murdered (and when you put it down that simply, that they broke our country’s law, it ceases to matter if he was a soldier or an astronaut and if they were Muslims or lemonade salesmen).

      I’ve tried looking at it from your side of the argument, and I’ll not say that you don’t have some valid points. Personally I doubt that Britain would ever have suffered any problems from Muslim terrorism if Tony Blair hadn’t been in bed with Mr. Bush. After all, Paris and Berlin haven’t suffered any terrorist attacks, have they?

      But no, I can’t see things from your point of view, anymore than you can see things from mine (that’s if you’ve read my words and intended to understand them, rather than read them and intend to engage in argument. Seems to happen a lot on your blog, old boy. Must be just the rest of the world that’s got everything wrong, eh?). It was a cowardly act on a brave man, not that I’ll convince you of anything close to the idea. You know what frightens me? That one day people will look back on 9/11 and not view it as an act of mass murder, but as a cry for help by poor misunderstood Mr. Bin Laden.

      In my mind, at least, there’s such a thing as loyalty, and another called honour (and that, incidentally, is why I do respect Georgian people who, for whatever their other faults, have both in buckets). I retain loyalty to my country, no matter that I haven’t lived in the damn place these last three years, and I… actually no, this reply is long enough. If I haven’t convinced you now (and I haven’t, I know, don’t worry) another reminder that if the same crime had been performed on a British Muslim person I’d be equally outraged won’t serve any purpose. By the way, read this twice. Then you might read it.

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