What we have, said a British patriot in one of the darkest days of the war, is “the British way of life.” That way of life is ever so vulnerable if examined under lacerating glass, and indeed that is exactly what happens every week at the Oxford and Cambridge Unions, where the students tear themselves and their country to pieces for a noisy evening and then submit decorously to the ruling of the Union’s President, and get on with the British way of life.Indeed.
But the threat to it is not, this time around, in the shape of a continental army threatening invasion, or Nazi bombers darkening the sky. The threat now is the Muslim immigration. There are fewer Muslims in Britain than in France — two million — but that’s still a lot. For many years Britain faced the problem of its commitment to members of its empire: Any citizen could leave Malaysia or Pakistan or India or Jamaica and simply show up, declaring himself a British resident. That problem was hotly debated in the days of Enoch Powell, when he insisted, departing England for a constituency in Northern Ireland, that some limits had to be observed or the British way of life would disappear.
The crisis is focusing now on the schools. The Muslim community has demanded its own schools. Wherein what, exactly, will be taught?
There are many interpreters of the true meaning of the commandments of the Koran. But among them are men and women who are prepared to end their own lives for the satisfaction of defying the British way of life. Four such persons, in the summer of 2005, attached themselves to bombs and blew up handy British targets, including three Underground trains.
What one got then from assorted imams, and continues to get now, is reverent disapprovals of incidental killings as contrary to the faith. But in the name of Jihad — holy war — such homilies against murder and arson are satellized by the dominant commands of the Koran to make war against infidels.
One hears exactly what one would expect from British authorities. The new prime minister, Gordon Brown, spoke at his first news conference of the “importance we attach to nonviolence.” That attachment makes unpalatable “the extreme message of those who practice violence and would maim and murder citizens on British soil.”
You said a mouthful, Prime Minister. But it is time for the mother of parliaments to look unruly, unassimilable creeds in the face and say: No more.
Oddly, the British way of life tolerates an established religion. In the end, the English are not hampered by toplofty commitments to freedom of speech and of conscience. Still, when the United States was seriously inconvenienced by our commitment to freedom of religion, we found means to handle Mormon polygamy. All the world waits to see how Parliament handles this threat to the British way of life.
Monday, August 27, 2007
Knowing, as many do, that not too far buried below the PC/multi-culti rot - there is in the UK and Europe the stomach to do what needs to be done if threatened. The Titan in Winter, William F. Buckley asks - is Britain ready to do what it must?