Mike the Psych's Blog

What if psychologists ruled the world? In real life?


Saudi Arabian football team deliver incredible insult to Australian hosts!

Kindadukish's Blog - I am not a number, I am a free man (The Prisoner)

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There are times when I despair at the attitude of muslims to non muslims and the culture of western countries. They will be the first to demand that WE respect THEIR culture but seem at times incapable of reciprocating. At the start of the recent Australia v Saudi Arabia football match in Australia the Saudi players ignored the minutes silence at the start of the match, held to pay respect to the London killings and in particular the fact that two of those who lost their lives were Australian nationals

Saudi Arabian football bosses have since issued an “unreserved” apology after their players failed to properly observe a minute’s silence in honour of London terror attack victims at the World Cup qualifier against the Socceroos in Adelaide.

When the stadium announcer called for a minute’s silence to honour the victims of last weekend’s attack, including Australian women Kirsty Boden and…

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The cult of violence in Islamic society

Good to see that the government has become the complainant in the Baloch murder case (or so-called honour killing) so no chance of family forgiving killer as is usual in these types of murder.

Kindadukish's Blog - I am not a number, I am a free man (The Prisoner)

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Pakistani civil society activists carry placards during a protest in Islamabad on July 18, 2016 against the murder of social media celebrity Qandeel Baloch by her own brother

The apparent “honour killing” of Pakistani social media celebrity Qandeel Baloch has led to renewed debate over women’s rights in the country, including the freedom to speak out online. Ms Baloch, 26, was frequently abused in cyberspace and had received death threats for her outspoken and controversial posts.
But Pakistani women, including journalists, often face vitriol and denigration for speaking their minds.
Here, four BBC Urdu journalists describe their experiences.

_90433936_ambershamsi.jpgAmber Shamsi
Some months ago, I published a story on Qandeel Baloch for BBC Urdu in which I identified her as a cultural landmark of sorts, a provocateur. Inevitably, the abuse followed. BBC Urdu and I were accused of having “nothing better to cover” for giving space to a “slut” who was disgracing…

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Isn’t it time to close down all faith schools?

world_religions_1600_wht_8904Religion – or more accurately differences in religious beliefs – has been said to be the cause of more deaths in our history on this planet than any other. And you don’t have to look much further than the schism between different kinds of muslims and the horrendous outcomes of that disagreement to wonder if that is true.

Since the Trojan Horse scandal in the midlands Ofsted inspectors seem to be taking the threat of extremist influences more seriously. At present the British Education Secretary has threatened to shut six independent muslim schools which, following snap inspections, have been found inadequate amid concerns about child welfare. (Of these schools four of them were previously rated as good or outstanding but three of the six schools were inspected by a muslim inspector begging the question of impartiality surely?).

At one school the designated child protection officer didn’t know he had the job. At another pupils told inspectors that a woman’s roles was to stay at home and cook and clean. At another girls had to wait for lessons to start until the teachers and the boys returned from the mosque.

The head of Ofsted, Sir Michael Wilshaw, said he was extremely concerned “about the large number of failings in each of the six independent schools inspected“. These include inadequate health and safety arrangements including locked fire exits and easy access by unauthorised members of the public (three of the schools were situated inside mosques). In all six policies relating to health, safety and welfare were missing or out of date. In four of the six schools statutory background checks had not been completed on the teaching staff.

They also had narrow curriculums focussing on developing Islamic knowledge at the expense of core subjects.

Nicky Morgan, the Education Secretary said “while there is no evidence of a coordinated plot it is clear these schools are failing children and it is unacceptable. All schools must prepare children for life in modern Britain” 

She has said that unless the schools produce an Action Plan within weeks she reserves the right to close them down.

Janice Turner, writing in the Times, described a conversation with a girl who had attended a private Islamic Boarding school – Jania Al-Hudaa in Nottingham. Pupils there were forbidden to swim, make art, read a newspaper, play a musical instrument, speak to the opposite sex, own a camera or read Harry Potter. Biology textbooks were censored.

Pupils din’t know the difference between sharia and  British law. The  majority of time on the curriculum is spent on “Islamic sciences“. Now over a thousand years ago Islamic scholars were developing ideas in maths, astronomy, physics and medicine based on what we would now recognise as a scientific approach but nowadays it’s a study of how the world is to be interpreted through the Qoran.

Furthermore these schools are funded by Saudi Arabian clerics who are devoted to spreading the extreme arab-speaking Wahabi version of Islam. (See Un- islamic things muslims do). Remember the free school in Derby that was closed down after pupils were segregated and all female staff (including non-muslims – were forced to wear the hijab?

But it’s not just muslim-run schools. Sir John Cass Foundation and Red Coat school,  a Church of England secondary school which was previously rated as outstanding, has been failed by inspectors.

It failed to vet visiting speakers and didn’t teach children about the risks of extremism despite more than 90% of its pupils being muslim. Although it had achieved excellent results it was  placed in special measures because the behaviour and safety of students.

Some students had set up Facebook and Youtube accounts account linked to jihadi extremism and boys and girls were segregated in the school. How can the head, Haydn Evans, who got a CBE this year plus an honorary degree from the University of London only this week,  have thought this was OK?

And today the Sunday Times reported on Hasidic, Orthodox Jewish, schools where students were students’s welfare was neglected and in one school students were slapped as punishment because teachers thought it “resulted in full submission”. The curriculum of these schools seems to consist of teaching religious instruction in Yiddish or Hebrew.

Two schools in Stamford Hill, London, have been threatened with closure and one in Salford has been downgraded from good to inadequate. Another London school has been downgraded from outstanding to good. Last year it received a warning after blacking out  questions on evolution in GCSE science examinations.

Apparently theDfE has had concerns about some of these school for 5 years! It said “Some orthodox Jewish schools often do not devote priority and time to secular education”. According to a mother of a pulp at one of the schools only 1 hour a day was spent on non-religious education.

The government’s guidelines on spiritual, moral, social and cultural development for independent schools came into force on 29 September and the Tower Hamlet’s schools were inspected under the guidelines in October. Several are criticised as failing under the guidelines, such as not dealing with allegedly extremist leaflets in mosques associated with some of the schools.

The growth of faith schools started when Tony Blair was Prime Minister (perhaps explained by his secret desire to become a catholic) and now a third of all state schools are religious. But David Cameron is also an apologist for them saying “faith-based schools help to build ethos and community”. 

And recently the Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welsby, dismissed criticism of faith schools saying none had been caught up in the Trojan Horse scandal. He said “We are the solution not the problem”. Well that was two weeks ago and it shows how short-sighted the establishment can be to let these things fester in plain view because of concerns about being seen to be multi-cultural.

We should be more like France (I never thought those words would pass my lips) be proud of our British values and insist on a wholly secular education system.


When will moderate muslims stand up and be counted? Quick updates

The Grand Mufti of Egypt, who is widely respected by Muslims world-wide, has launched a campaign to challenge efforts by extremists in Syria and Iraq to brand themselves “Islamic State”.

His social media campaign wants to persuade the media to use “al-Qaeda Separatists in Iraq and Syria” or QSIS to avoid lending authority to the jihadists.

The Grand Mufti, Shawki Allam said that the extremists violated all Islamic principles and laws and that the group was a danger to Islam.

Updated 26 August 2014

Reading that 70% of the UK population are frightened of Jihadi terrorists isn’t surprising given the activities of extremists terrorising people in the name of their religion Islam.

We have Boko Haram determined to deny women an education, Isis murdering non-Muslims in the most horrific ways, not to mention allegations of their victims being trafficked into slavery or the sex trade, and kids with guns beheading people.

These fundamentalists don’t accept that people can hold different beliefs and adopt a “convert or be killed” policy. You can also be killed if you are the wrong kind of Muslim (90% of  the 11 million Muslims killed since 1948 were killed by other Muslims)

Marrying outside your religion is asking to be murdered. So called “honour killing” is a world-wide phenomenon.

Horrific yet where are the protests? Why aren’t Muslims marching in the streets saying “not in our name“?

As the philosopher Edmund Burke said “The only thing necessary for the triumph [of evil] is for good men to do nothing”

By their deafening silence you wonder where their sympathies lie and it makes you wonder if there are any moderate muslims.

NB I haven’t used an image with this post as I usually do. There are thousands out there but they either glorify what these extremists are doing or are scenes of death and torture.


Things some muslims do which are un-Islamic

First, gender segregation. There is no basis for this in Islamic law according to one of Britain’s leading Sunni imams.

Ahtsham Ali, a former President of the Islamic Society of Britain, says making men and women sit in separate rooms is not justified by anything in the Koran.

A passage in the Koran instructs the prophet’s wives to stay at home but this was addressed specifically at his family.

He also warned against emulating the prophet by refusing to wear suits or having your hair cut. “Emulation is not absolute. You don’t have to emulate except when the prophet asks you to”.

At a recent Living Islam Festival he also asked muslims to think more carefully about Sharia and to challenge scholars’ verdicts.

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Photo from Daily Star

And a couple of weeks ago a Downing Street petition was started to ban the burka and it was started by muslims. They are worried about what they see as a “disturbing social trend” to wear the full burka or niquab.

The petition was launched by Dr Taj Hargey, imam at the Muslim Educational Centre in Oxford, who has become concerned about this trend. He welcomes the ruling by the European Court of Human Rights that France’s prohibition of face-masking is lawful.

He says “many muslims have been misled by bogus propaganda from fundamentalists that the burka/niquab is integral to Islam. This is untrue. It is a tribal cloth that is both pre-Islamic, non-Koranic, and unMuslim. Female anonymity is an imported Saudi/Afghan fad

He goes on to say that “the burka/niquab must be resisted for compelling theological, social, health, security, gender equity and patriarchal reasons so that Britain’s traditional character is preserved. We must oppose this salvo from theological extremists seeking to impose their warped version of Islam“.

Interestingly it is forbidden for Muslim women going on pilgrimages to Mecca to cover their faces. So if such a pre-Islamic practice is banned in Islam’s holiest site, why on earth would it be required on the streets of Britain? And women who cover their faces have to uncover them for UK identification documentation such as rail cards, driving licences and passports. 

Dr Hargey believes that all of us, Muslims and non-Muslims alike, have a duty to challenge the religious hardliners who have cynically exploited British traditions of tolerance and individual liberty to pursue their own twisted sectarian agenda imported wholesale from the Arab Middle East.

For many people, seeing women wearing niquabs is offensive. They cut themselves off from others, you can’t judge their emotional state and it comes across as a clear signal that they are different and have no intention of being British. I have only ever seen black face-masks and there is something sinister about that, perhaps reminding us of the Taliban and other jihadists. I also heard one young women in a niquab telling an English women who had tut-tutted at seeing her to “eff off”. Doesn’t sound very islamic to me.

The problem is we are too tolerant in this country and allow people to exploit that – look at the problems we have deporting hard-line preachers – unlike France which is quite clear about what they expect from muslims.

As you might expect in a democratic country like Britain there has been a counter-petition opposing a ban on face veils because “British women should have the free right to shoe how they dress”. Doesn’t that mean without being coerced by fundamentalists?

If muslims are worried about this social trend shouldn’t we be worried too and shake up government complacency and PC attitudes? 

If you feel strongly enough about this issue and want to sign the petition to ban face-masking go here.

Update

I wrote this post last night before I saw the report in today’s Sunday Times about extremists targeting street festivals. They are trying to enforce an Isis-style interpretation of Islamic Law in Britain by trying to ban people listening to music, dancing, and mixing with the opposite sex.

The militants – believed to be linked to hate preacher Anjem Choudhury – are bullying and intimidating British Muslims and telling them that such activities equate to “devil -worship” (an argument Isis make against the Yazidis in Iraq).

There have been incidents in Birmingham where these hard-liners disrupted the festivities to celebrate the end of Ramadan boasting that they are “stopping da filthy dancing“. In London women travelling to a family festival to celebrate the Bangladeshi New Year were warned it was forbidden for them to attend. Other participants were told the BBC-sponsoered Boishakhi Mela event backed by Tower Hamlets Council encouraged “sin”, “fornication” and “drug-taking“. Shiraj Haque, the chairman of the Trust which organised the event, said ” you can’t have physical intimidation like this“. Well that’s how militants, extremists or hard-liners , call them what you will, operate.

Ghaffar Hussain, the managing director of Quilliam, a counter-extremist think tank, said “it’s alarming that UK-based extremists are now seeking to import and Isis-style interpretation of Islam and impose it on British citizens. Banning music and dancing is completely unacceptable in a modern democracy and goes against all British values”.

The militants are now urging people to boycott a large Eid Festival organised by Birmingham City Council next Sunday so expect more coverage of the exploits of this hard-line minority determined to intimidate fellow Muslims.