UKIP’s constitution under Clause 2.4 says clearly that we uphold the principles of Equality under the Law and oppose all forms of discrimination. It follows from this that it would be wrong to mention Islam specifically in any manifesto, at least as far as proposed changes to the law are concerned, because if the law identifies any person or group then automatically that person or group is no longer equal under the law. A number of members who have left us have found that difficult to reconcile.
The issues we face are those of criminality and cultural displacement, not Islam as such. I see no reason to enquire into the nature of Islam. I have never read the Koran as it is not my religion. I am a libertarian believing in freedom of conscience and worship. A problem only arises if the law is broken. The law is binary. Either you are Guilty or you are Not Guilty. There is nothing in between. Motivation is irrelevant as far as the verdict is concerned. It may be taken into account in the sentencing, but that is another matter. The fact that some individuals do not respect the law and want to substitute their own need not concern us at the level of an individual crime. It does concern us however if such individuals attain political power and influence in large numbers. It also concerns us if the indigenous population start to feel pushed aside and ignored either physically or politically. That is what I call cultural displacement. Nobody minds a bit of diversity and I support those who say it enriches our own civilisation, but when the numbers become as large as they are now it ceases to be diversity and becomes displacement.
Those who protest at this are often accused of Islamophobia. It seems to be an exclusively Islamic problem. We don’t have the same problem with Judaism of Sikhism for example as they make an effort to fit in and adopt our values, and we have benefited greatly from their contributions.
Phobia simply means fear. Machiavelli noted that if you hurt a man he will hate you for it, and all the others will fear you for it. He was of course advocating fear as an instrument of policy, whereas we want exactly the opposite. But his understanding of human nature was spot on. Of course if someone comes along and tries to kill us or rape our daughters we are going to hate them for it. And everyone else will fear them for it. What else did they expect! Fear is irrational and will not draw nice distinctions between good moslems and bad. Aggression is always and only a sign of insecurity. Insecure people will lash out indiscriminately, and that will then create fear on the other side, and before you know it a viscous circle has flared up and you have a civil war on your hands.
If you want to reduce an effect then you must reduce the cause, and the principle causes of racism and Islamophobia in this country today are perceived inequality under the law and cultural displacement. To paraphrase Tony Blair’s famous dictum about crime, we must not only be tough on racism, we must also be tough on the causes of racism.
Canvassing around Southall now during two general elections, a majority black and Asian community with a large number of different ethnic groups and the largest Sikh community outside India, I was struck by how almost all of them said it was natural for each to self-segregate. I don’t have a problem with this, provided always that no group becomes disproportionately dependent on the state. I certainly don’t agree with those who want to whiz everyone up into some sort of homogeneous, mono-cultural mulligatawny soup. On that basis we should object to the Welsh speaking Welsh! We all want to preserve and celebrate our own cultures, and that is the glory of multiculturalism. Long may it survive. It only becomes a problem if one group becomes over-assertive and insists on shoving their own identity up the noses of others. Gay Pride marches routed through Muslim neighbourhoods provide an entertaining example! Muslim ethnic cleansing and grooming gangs a much more serious one.
However the result is the formation of something akin to geological tectonic plates. When one plate expands and starts to overlap another you get earthquakes and volcanic eruptions, in this case in the form of conflict and racism. I understand the dilemma that local authorities find themselves in when faced with the need to accommodate increasing and changing numbers like this, but their attempts to mix everyone up simply does not work. The result is the ethnic cleansing gangs that we have seen in Luton and elsewhere which intimidate all others out of the areas they themselves want to live in, and the police, under orders from the local authority, simply stand by and do nothing.
The only real answer is to control the ethnic balance and numbers with strict control over immigration and by ending breeding for benefits. I address those policies elsewhere. In addition we must review the lines of accountability of the police so that enforcement of national laws are not overlooked. The appointment of a national Chief of Police to provide a clear line of accountability and responsibility between local constabularies and Parliament would be a start. It would also help ensure the police get the resources they need, and that the performance of each constabulary is reviewed in comparison with its peers. And it would enable a secondary line for public complaint to a national review team for instances where local constabularies fail to follow up on local complaints or, even worse, start to persecute those who complain, as has been witnessed now on several occasions.