"Diversity Is Where Nations Go To Die"
Take a look at this photograph. It appeared in The Toronto Star’s education section on Saturday:
It’s the scene every Friday at the cafeteria of Valley Park Middle School in Toronto. That’s not a private academy, it’s a public school funded by taxpayers. And yet, oddly enough, what’s going on is a prayer service – oh, relax, it’s not Anglican or anything improper like that; it’s Muslim Friday prayers, and the Toronto District School Board says don’t worry, it’s just for convenience: They put the cafeteria at the local imams’ disposal because otherwise the kids would have to troop off to the local mosque and then they’d be late for Lesbian History class or whatever subject is scheduled for Friday afternoon.
The picture is taken from the back of the cafeteria. In the distance are the boys. They’re male, so they get to sit up front at prayers. Behind them are the girls. They’re female, so they have to sit behind the boys because they’re second-class citizens – not in the whole of Canada, not formally, not yet, but in the cafeteria of a middle school run by the Toronto District School Board they most certainly are.
And the third row? The ones with their backs to us in the foreground of the picture? Well, let the Star’s caption writer explain:
At Valley Park Middle School, Muslim students participate in the Friday prayer service. Menstruating girls, at the very back, do not take part.
Oh. As Kathy Shaidle says: Yep, that’s part of the caption of the Toronto Star photo. Yes, the country is Canada and the year is 2011.
Just so. Not some exotic photojournalism essay from an upcountry village in Krappistan. But a typical Friday at a middle school in the largest city in Canada. I forget which brand of tampon used to advertise itself with the pitch "Now with new [whatever] you can go horse-riding, water-ski-ing, ballet dancing, whatever you want to do", but perhaps they can just add the tag: "But not participate in Friday prayers at an Ontario public school."
Some Canadians will look at this picture and react as Miss Shaidle did, or Tasha Kheiriddin in The National Post:
Is this the Middle Ages? Have I stumbled into a time warp, where “unclean” women must be prevented from “defiling” other persons? It’s bad enough that the girls at Valley Park have to enter the cafeteria from the back, while the boys enter from the front, but does the entire school have the right to know they are menstruating?
But a lot of Canadians will glance at the picture and think, “Aw, diversity, ain’t it a beautiful thing?” – no different from the Sikh Mountie in Prince William’s escort. And even if they read the caption and get to the bit about a Toronto public school separating menstruating girls from the rest of the student body and feel their multiculti pieties wobbling just a bit, they can no longer quite articulate on what basis they’re supposed to object to it. Indeed, thanks to the likes of Ontario “Human Rights” Commission chief commissar Barbara Hall, the very words in which they might object to it have been all but criminalized.
Islam understands the reality of Commissar Hall’s “social justice”: You give ’em an inch, and they’ll take the rest. Following a 1988 cease-and-desist court judgment against the Lord’s Prayer in public school, the Ontario Education Act forbids “any person to conduct religious exercises or to provide instruction that includes religious indoctrination in a particular religion or religious belief in a school.” That seems clear enough. If somebody at Valley Park stood up in the cafeteria and started in with “Our Father, which art in Heaven”, the full weight of the School Board would come crashing down on them. Fortunately, Valley Park is 80-90 per cent Muslim, so there are no takers for the Lord’s Prayer. And, when it comes to the prayers they do want to say, the local Islamic enforcers go ahead secure in the knowledge that the diversity pansies aren’t going to do a thing about it.
Nobody would know a thing about the “mosqueteria” story were it not for the blogger Blazing Cat Fur, whom I was honoured to say a word for in Ottawa a few months back. He broke this story and then saw it get picked up without credit by the Toronto media. He does that a lot. Currently, he’s featuring the thoughts of Jawed Anwar, the editor of The Muslim, a publication for Greater Toronto Area Muslims, and of Dr Bilal Philips, a “Canadian religious scholar” who was born in Jamaica but grew up in Toronto and has many prestigious degrees not only from Saudi Arabia but also from the University of Wales, where he completed a PhD in “Islamic Theology”. Dr Philips is in favour of death for homosexuals and, as one Canadian to another, Mr Anwar was anxious to explain to his readers that that’s nothing to get alarmed about:
Although, there is no clear-cut verse in Qur’an that categorically suggests killing of homosexuals, sayings of Prophet Muhammad suggests three types of sentences, and among that one is death. Bilal Philips is suggesting, based on his opinion on the Qur’anic/Prophetic principles of society. He is not advising the Islamic judiciary to kill any gay person they found, but what he is “suggesting” is judicial punishment of death sentence for those who confess or are seen “performing homosexual acts” by “four reliable witnesses without any doubt.”
The essence of Islamic laws is to protect the life of human beings. And it happens that sometimes killing of a person can save thousands and sometimes millions of lives. The Islamic judiciary can punish a person with death sentence to save others’ lives.
Okay, great, thanks. Glad you cleared that up. Two eminent “Canadian” Muslims are openly discussing the conditions under which homosexuals should be executed – and doing so in the cheerful knowledge that Commissar Hall, so determined to slap down my “Islamophobia”, isn’t going to do a thing about their “homophobia”. She’s more likely to accept a complaint from another “Canadian”, Mohammad Baghery, who accuses Michael Coren of the crime of “making fun of Muslims”. (Barbara Hall's incoherent thoughts can be heard here: appropriately enough, she sounds like the robot voice that instructs you to buckle your seatbelt.)
Imagine if you're a soi-disant moderate Muslim, genuinely so. You came to Canada because Yemen's a dump, and you don't want to waste your life there. And your daughter loves it, and wants to be Canadian, and be just like the other girls in her street. And then she goes to Valley Park Middle School: What if she doesn't feel it's a religious obligation to attend Friday prayers (as some Muslims argue)? Think there's much chance of being able to opt out easily at Valley Park? What if she wants to dress as she wishes to rather than as the Wahhabi/Salafist imam orders? What if she doesn't want to tell the creepy perve imam whether she's menstruating or not? What, in other words, is her chance of being able to attend Valley Park as a regular Canadian schoolgirl?
I've had cause to mention before Phyllis Chesler's photographs of Cairo University's evolving dress code over the last half-century. Here's how the female students looked in 1978:
In 1978, the female students in Cairo looked little different from the female students at the University of Toronto, or Kingston. Now the schoolgirls of Toronto look no different from Cairo. Ms Chesler's pictures are a story of transformation, but that transformation is not confined to the Middle East. For snapshots of Canada's own particular transformation, one might take Berton père et fils. Until his death in 2004, Pierre Berton was the great popularizer of Canadian history, a man whose best-known soundbite was that "a Canadian is someone who knows how to make love in a canoe". It wasn't true even then, but it spoke to an agreed national myth. His son, Paul Berton, became the somnolent editor of The London Free Press, who used what little energy he had to protect the tender sensibilities of his city's fast-growing and belligerently assertive Muslim community. His successor is even more protective. From Pierre Berton to Paul Berton is also a story of transformation: A Canadian is someone who knows how to make love in a canoe in a niqab?
If you didn’t know it before that Valley Park photograph, you should now: “Diversity” is where nations go to die. If local Mennonites or Amish were segregating the sexes and making them enter by different doors for religious services in a Toronto grade-school cafeteria, Canadian feminists would howl them down in outrage. But when Muslims do it they fall as silent as their body-bagged sisters in Kandahar. If you’re wondering how Valley Park’s catchment district got to be 80-90 per cent Muslim is nothing flat, well, Islam is currently the biggest supplier of new Canadians, as it is of new Britons and new Europeans. Not many western statistics agencies keep tabs on religion, but the Vienna Institute of Demography, for example, calculates that by 2050 a majority of Austrians under 15 will be Muslim. 2050 isn’t that far away. It’s as far from today as 2011 is from 1972: The future shows up faster than you think.
A world that becomes more Muslim becomes less everything else: First it’s Jews, already fleeing Malmo in Sweden. Then it’s homosexuals, already under siege from gay-bashing in Amsterdam, “the most tolerant city in Europe”. Then it’s uncovered women, already targeted for rape in Oslo and other Continental cities. And, if you don’t any longer have any Jews or (officially) any gays or (increasingly) uncovered women, there are always just Christians in general, from Egypt to Pakistan.
More space for Islam means less space for everything else, and in the end less space for you.
Mohammad Baghery is not Canadian. Jawed Anwar is not Canadian. Dr Bilal Philips is not Canadian. The men who separate boys from girls and menstruating girls from non-menstruating girls every Friday at Valley Park Middle School are not Canadian. Perhaps, were we a different kind of society, they would over time become Canadian. But, because they don’t have to, they won’t. Because they look at the witless “Pride” parade and the diversity blather and Barbara Hall and Bernie Farber and Co handing each other Mutual Backslap Awards all year long, and Mohammad and Jawed and Bilal understand that they’re what comes after Canada. This year it’s maybe just one mosqueteria. Next year, two or three more. Half a decade on, who knows? South of the border? The Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department, for reasons that are unclear, already has a taxpayer-funded “Muslim Community Affairs Unit”. But don’t worry, your small town in Minnesota will be getting one soon enough. As this Salafist lady told the woman from The New York Times, demonstrating how she gradually adopted full-face covering:
It just takes time… You get used to it. Look at that picture from Valley Park: Toronto’s already used to it.
Britain needs the rich to get richer
The Government needs the rich to take an even bigger slice of the nation's wages if future spending plans are to be met, according to the Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR).
Although growing levels of income inequality have been identified by economists as one of the causes of the recent crisis, analysis by the OBR shows that the Government is more dependant than ever on the rich for tax revenues.
Due to the UK's progressive tax system, the rich pay a far greater share of income tax, which is expected to raise £158bn this year – 27pc of total receipts. As a result, the OBR estimates, for every one percentage point increase in the share of total wages taken by the top 5pc of earners the state receives an extra £2.4bn.
In the eight years between 2000 and 2008, the OBR found, the top 5pc of earners increased their share of the wage pool from 23.3pc to 26.4pc – generating an extra £7.2bn in tax. The top 5pc earn above £60,000, while the bottom 50pc are on less than £18,500.
"If the recent trend of increasing income inequality were to continue it would potentially drive an increase in personal tax receipts," the OBR said in its Fiscal Sustainability Report. "Conversely, a reversal of income inequality would lead to a fall in revenues."
The report demonstrated that the Government cannot afford to let personal tax receipts fall because it is already facing the loss of £29bn of revenues over the next two decades as cars become more fuel-efficient, people smoke less, and North Sea oil and gas reserves are depleted.
"Future governments are likely to need to find replacement revenue streams to keep the tax burden constant, let alone to meet the costs of the ageing population," the OBR said. The report's central finding was that Britain needs an extra £22bn-£58.5bn of tax rises or spending cuts as the costs of the ageing population make the public finances "unsustainable".
Paul Johnson, director of the Institute for Fiscal Studies, said: "It is a little risky for the public finances to be so dependant on such a small chunk of the population." He added that, if the income distribution changes, the Government would "adjust accordingly" by raising rates for those on lower pay.
Earlier this year, Min Zhu, the new deputy managing director of the International Monetary Fund, warned: "The increase in inequality is the most serious challenge for the world."
A Queer and Present Danger
It looks like the Gaystapo is really up in arms over my recent series of articles on Cisco’s firing of Frank Turek. I can tell because I’m starting to get emails from them that are full of ALL CAPS – not to mention intentional misunderstanding of the central moral and legal issues I’ve been discussing. The following, which was posted on a homosexual website and then sent to my private email address, is illustrative:
How many times does this have to be explained before people finally figure out how the freedom of speech works? The freedom of speech is NOT a freedom from consequences. Your constitutional rights are ONLY protected from GOVERNMENT intervention. That’s it. The freedom of speech ONLY exists to protect you from the government stepping in an [sic] telling you what you can and can’t say.
Private companies and private citizens are not the government.
If (Frank Turek) had been arrested for what he said then yes, it’s a free speech case. If Cisco was entirely funded by tax payer dollars thus making them an extension of state or federal government then yes, it would be a free speech case. Neither occurred. It is not a free speech case.
Most companies, especially those that deal with sensitive information like Cisco, have very strict policies about how employees conduct themselves online in their free time. And your [sic] patently wrong that there’s “no evidence that Turek’s extracurricular activities affected his work with Cisco and its employees in the least” because the initial complaint was made by someone who attended one of his seminars. An employee complained about another employee. So yes… there is evidence that it affected Cisco employees because that’s where the complaint came from.
Sorry for getting a bit ranty but I am sick to f---ing death of homophobes trying to hide behind free speech as if it’s this magic stupidity shield that makes it ok to be a moron.
This is one of the rare times I agree with a member of the Gaystapo. In fact, his “ranty” missive is right in two important respects:
1. The Frank Turek case is not about the First Amendment. That is why we have never asserted that it is about the First Amendment. It is about tolerance and the manner in which employees treat one another. Even a blind homosexual, like a blind squirrel, occasionally finds a nut – although, in this case, I should probably say “acorn.”
2. Private speech does have consequences. When you express yourself in the court of public opinion, people may well be angered by what you say. Consequently, they might not want to work with you. I suppose that even a broken homosexual, like a broken clock, is right twice a day.
The fact that Cisco Systems has angered many people with its speech – in the form of one-sided homosexual activism – is clearly exacerbating its current financial woes. In fact, Fox News is reporting that Cisco is considering slashing as many as 10,000 jobs as it struggles to recoup from recent market losses.
Furthermore, according to Bloomberg News, Cisco is mulling cutting as many as 7,000 spots by the end of August. The 10,000 figure represents one-seventh of its total workforce. Cisco, which is the world’ largest networking-equipment maker, is also providing early-retirement packages to several thousand workers. There have been no indications as to whether Cisco will consider employee stance on the issue of same-sex marriage when making the proposed workforce cuts.
Regardless, these potential job cuts come after Cisco suffered an 18% decline in fiscal third-quarter earnings and revealed plans for $1 billion in cost reductions amid a weaker-than-expected outlook for the current quarter. This significant decline coincided with the public controversy concerning the Turek firing – a quarter during which CEO John Chambers received thousands of letters of protest concerning Cisco’s policies of inclusion and diversity. The company’s shares have declined 23.7% year-to-date and lost nearly one-third of their value over the past 52 weeks. Yet there is no indication whether Cisco will now take time off from firing Christians for their religious beliefs and instead devote their time to regaining the confidence of their shareholders.
I’m sorry for getting a bit ranty but I am sick to death of the Gaystapo trying to hide behind free speech. It’s not a magic stupidity shield that makes it okay to function as a company full of sanctimonious hypocrites. No one wants to do business with a company like that. And it’s not really a First Amendment issue.
What would the founders do about welfare?
Forty-four million Americans are on food stamps — up from 26 million in 2007. Spending on the program has more than doubled as well, to $77 million. Meanwhile, reports of abuse have skyrocketed.
It’s not the only anti-poverty program that seems to be growing like Topsy while accomplishing little. The federal government currently runs over 70 different means-tested programs providing cash, food, housing, medical care and social services to poor and low-income persons. They cost nearly $1 trillion per year — more than the 2009 stimulus package and no more successful.
Adjusted for inflation, welfare spending is 13 times higher today than it was in 1965, when Washington launched the War on Poverty. Yet the proportion of people living in poverty remains essentially unchanged.
In Vindicating the Founders, Thomas West notes that: "In 1947, the government reported that 32 percent of Americans were poor. By 1969 that figure had declined to 12 percent, where it remained for ten years. Since then, the percentage of poor Americans has increased to about 15 percent. In other words, before the huge growth in government spending on poverty programs, poverty was declining rapidly in America."
So what was driving down poverty rates before LBJ declared “war”? Let’s go back to the beginning.
Our nation’s founders recognized the need to take care of the sick and indigent who couldn’t help themselves. Quoting natural rights philosopher John Locke, West writes that “[T]he law of nature teaches not only self-preservation but also preservation of others, ‘when one’s own preservation comes into competition.’” In other words, society is organized for the security of its members as well as their liberty and property. A society that fails to respond to those in need jeopardizes its own preservation.
In the early days of the American experiment, local governments — not the feds — assumed this responsibility. But there was careful emphasis that “poor laws not go beyond a minimal safety net,” West notes, and that aid be provided only on the condition of labor. Only the truly helpless, those “who had no friends or family to help, were taken care of in idleness.”
The founders saw a great danger in overly generous welfare policy — that it would promote irresponsible behavior. That, in turn, would threaten the inherent natural right of every individual “to liberty, including the right to the free exercise of one’s industry and its fruits.”
Contrast that with today’s anti-poverty measures. Of 70 federal welfare programs, only one — Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) — actively encourages greater self-reliance. The remaining 69 encourage irresponsible behavior. Unsurprisingly, abuse of the system is rampant. Food stamp recipients sell benefit cards on Facebook, then falsely report lost cards. And recipients include prison inmates as well as millionaire lottery winners.
Our founders would not be surprised. While living in Europe in the 1760s, Franklin observed: “in different countries … the more public provisions were made for the poor, the less they provided for themselves, and of course became poorer. And, on the contrary, the less was done for them, the more they did for themselves, and became richer.”
Similarly, Jefferson argued that “to take from one … in order to spare to others, who, or whose fathers, have not exercised equal industry and skill, is to violate arbitrarily the first principle of association, the guarantee to everyone the free exercise of his industry and the fruits acquired by it.”
This is why the founders encouraged reliance upon family, private charity and community. This approach ensured that aid to the needy was provided as personally as possible. Family and community can make crucial distinctions between the deserving and undeserving poor, whereas government cannot. Many individuals, for example, need a government handout far less than they need moral guidance and correction, which church groups and family can provide.
Throughout the latter half of the 20th century, however, the War on Poverty turned these concepts on their head. Incentives for self-reliance, industry and hard work were reversed. Programs offering financial aid and child care to single women incentivized single-parent households while discouraging marriage. By 1995, a non-working, single mother of two was eligible for benefits equivalent to a job paying close to (and in some states, even more than) the average salary. Small wonder the decline in poverty rates was checked.
America needs to return to the principles that worked so successfully before Washington embraced the European welfare state model. As Benjamin Franklin wrote, with sound poverty policy, “industry will increase … circumstances [of the poor] will mend, and more will be done for their happiness by inuring them to provide for themselves.”
Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.
American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of other countries. The only real difference, however, is how much power they have. In America, their power is limited by democracy. To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges. They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did: None. So look to the colleges to see what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way. It would be a dictatorship.
For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, GUN WATCH, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, DISSECTING LEFTISM, IMMIGRATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL and EYE ON BRITAIN (Note that EYE ON BRITAIN has regular posts on the reality of socialized medicine). My Home Pages are here or here or here or Email me (John Ray) here. For readers in China or for times when blogger.com is playing up, there is a mirror of this site here.