Tuesday, 5 May 2015

HnH's silence over segregated Labour meeting explains how Rotherham happened

Labour have finally broken their silence over the segregated meeting attended by MPs Tom Watson, Liam Byrne, and Jack Dromey and MEP Sion Simon in Birmingham over the weekend. According to a story just published by the Daily Mirror a Labour spokesman is quoted as saying:

"Labour fully supports gender equality in all areas of society and all cultures... the seating arrangements ensured women from Muslim communities could take part."

As Orwellian newspeak and doublethink go, it is pretty standard Labour fayre which translates to "we accepted illegal segregation by sexes rather than illegally denying women entry". Presumably just refusing to attend the meeting unless it was in accord with the law didn't cross anybody's mind as there were votes at stake. By attempting to gloss over such blatant inequality while taking part in it and then trying to excuse it on the basis of 'culture' is such a sickening evasion that we can scarcely believe they had the gall to put out such a statement, not least as the meeting was arranged by Labour councillor Ansar Ali Khan. Surely it would make more sense just to expel Khan for sexism if he is unable to arrange a Labour Party meeting where men and women are treated equally.

Meanwhile, Hope not Hate - the great self-appointed moral arbiter of equality - has so far had nothing at all to say on the subject, and we can't see that changing.

We have blogged before on this subject: The responsibility for the grooming crisis lies within the culture Hope not Hate has infected the Labour Party with , and nothing we said then has changed: if anything, the current sexism scandal simply underlines the double standards at play. In Birmingham, Labour MPs went along with the meeting because they saw not the injustice and inequality of women being segregated, but only the votes that could be delivered by attending. And, of course, there were the concerns that by speaking out, they would be accused of 'cultural insensitivity' and 'racism'. Exactly the same reason that police officers, council officials, Labour councillors and Labour MPs did nothing in Rotherham over child abuse.

Are there any women here? - meeting
addressed by Liam Byrne
Sadly, the meeting at Hodge Hill has proved that nothing has changed either within the Labour Party, or within its associated hard-left, anti-UKIP organisations who pretend to believe in equality, who are the first to shout 'sexism' at UKIP, and yet are right at the back of the crowd mutely acquiescing when it is there in front of them in the own party. The hypocrisy is staggering - if it is against the law for the Christian owners of a B&B to turn away homosexual guests because of their beliefs, then how can it be right for a Labour Party meeting in a community centre to require segregation of men and women?

If nothing will convince you of the cynicism of both Labour and Hope not Hate, then consider these facts: Tom Watson is an active campaigner for Hope not Hate, writing recently how "We did a Hope Not Hate thing in Sandwell". Liam Byrne on his Flickr photostream - and without apparent irony - is pictured addressing several all-male Muslim gatherings in addition to being pictured delivering Hope not Hate leaflets. Sion Simon on his website boasts of meeting local Hope not Hate activists to 'celebrate the cultural harmony we enjoy' - the women were left outside in the rain, we assume.
Liam Byrne delivering (with no sense
of irony) Hope not Hate leaflets

Hope not Hate themselves frequently revisit what they claim is UKIP's sexism; a couple of minutes searching their website will return hundreds of results, with most articles based on a wilful misunderstanding of what was actually said by the UKIP person they are attacking at the time. Despite this, we don't recall UKIP ever having arranged a meeting where women were made to sit separately from men or - as in the case of one meeting addressed by Byrne - where women were excluded altogether.

It is these very double standards which bring us to the heart of the argument. In Rotherham, former MP, convicted thief and Hope not Hate activist Denis MacShane said of the child grooming scandal that:

""I think there was a culture of not wanting to rock the multicultural community boat if I may put it like that. We were aware of the oppression of women within bits of the Muslim community in Britain but....Perhaps yes, as a true Guardian reader, and liberal leftie, I suppose I didn’t want to raise that too hard.”

UKIPs sexism? When did they hold a segregated meeting?
This attendance at segregated meetings is simply putting an official, Labour Party rubber stamp on behaviour which would be unacceptable elsewhere; an acknowledgement that 100 years of women's suffrage, 50 years of Women's Lib and 40 years of equality legislation don't apply if you believe in certain religions. As others have said elsewhere, if the meeting had been segregated by race or by sexual orientation there would have been hell to pay.

It is sadly this same approach which has seen Labour councils across the UK face similar problems with paedophilia, or as it is now politely called, 'Child Sexual Exploitation'. We saw in Rotherham - and heard from then MP MacShane - that Labour didn't want to rock the boat for fear of being called 'racist'. Council employees, police officers and politicians alike were infected by this top-down fear of being branded with the one label which is guaranteed to halt any career in its tracks where Labour are involved. And so - just like Watson, Byrne, Dromey and Simon - they held their tongues, and let thousands of school age young girls pay the price of their right-on political correctness.

What we should be worried about is the law against Islamophobia promised by Laobur leader Ed Miliband should he become Prime Minister. We wonder which crimes could then be reported by the media: would reports of the Rotherham scandal and the Birmingham meeting be considered Islamophobic?

 Here in the UK, most of us were brought up to believe that justice is blind, and took that to mean that we were all equal before the law, without excuse. When will Labour, Hope not Hate and their bully boys in Stand up to UKIP and Unite Against Facism learn that a crime is still a crime even if the person committing it is a Muslim?

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