The House of David

"dawnbreak in the west"

Saturday, May 07, 2016

Londonistan's new imam

I was born in London but I was just passing through. Neither parent was from there... well, okay, Mum was born not far away herself, but her parents were even further from London than Dad's were. As in, Chicago, for her own mum... like any of us ever cared much. So watching Sadiq Khan being sworn in as London's mayor is, to me, a bit of "not my city not my problem".

Also London has always been "English" in more or less the same way Calais is "French". These are port cities. Except that London rules England where Calais doesn't rule France (Normans and Plantagenets aside). So...

Sadiq Khan has a history of banter with extremists and antiSemites. He has been questioned about this - and, about seven years ago, he contrasted those men with Harriet Stowe's character Uncle Tom. Sort of:

I wish we only spoke to people who agree with us. I can tell you that I’ve spent the last months in this job speaking to all sorts of people. Not just leaders, not just organisations but ordinary rank and file citizens of Muslim faith and that’s what good government is about, it’s about engaging with all stakeholders. You can talk about articles in the newspapers about what an organisation might get but the point is you can’t just pick and choose who you speak to, you can’t just speak to Uncle Toms.

In context I have to see this as an offhand remark, a Kinsey Gaffe. It's not that he's making the case for secularists - like Raheem Kassam - being institutionalised slaves. I doubt that Khan has even read the book (to be fair, although I did try, I gave up a third of the way through). This is just what Khan has picked up from amongst his peers, those ordinary rank and file citizens of Muslim faith. Khan doesn't associate with nonMuslim or jack-Muslim Near-Easterners and Pakistanis. They're not ordinary. They don't compute for him.

On that topic Raheem Kassam asks: Hey @londonelects – why was #SadiqKhan sworn in at Southwark Cathedral, when Boris was sworn in at City Hall? Another one asked why no tie - why he deliberately signaled against the Cross.

Isn't a swearing-in at a house of worship something one normally does for kings? Like Mu'awiya taking the baya in Jerusalem?

posted by Zimri on 17:44 | link | 0 comments

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