31 May 2017

France has woken up to the danger of Islamism. Has Britain?

.... What laïcité doesn’t do, and the reason why it’s scorned by so many on the British left, is ‘celebrate diversity’. This has been the British dogma for a quarter of a century and it’s clearly not worked, as was laid bare last year by Trevor Phillips, when the former head of the Equality and Human Rights Commission warned that ‘squeamishness about addressing diversity and its discontents risks allowing our country to sleepwalk to a catastrophe that will set community against community’.

Kepel shares this assessment, worried that Britain has yet to grasp the incompatibility of its values with those of the Islamists. ‘The United Kingdom has driven a policy of prevention but also of devolving entire districts to the Islamists, notably tolerating Islamic tribunals, in order to buy social peace,’ he explained. ‘The acceptance of a form of separatism, an ‘apartheid’, as is the case in Birmingham with his Sharia judges passing sentence, poses a very big problem for their values.’

Laïcité, in contrast, unashamedly promotes French values above all others, be they Catholic, Muslim or Jewish. All religions are respected – but the Republic comes first. In short, laïcité is the glue that holds the country together and that’s why the Islamists have failed to fracture France despite five years of sickening violence. [The Spectator] Read more