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Blair's Thought Police
on 1 September 2005
Not long before 7/7 the government was planning to outlaw hatred of religious groups, a move based on the perception that the Muslim community - or should that be communities? - were victims of said hatred.
Presumably Salmon Rushdie's 'Satanic Verses' would be proscribed under such legislation?
Last year the BBC showed a documentary in which a member of the BNP stated the he would like to "machine gun" Moslems as they came out of the local mosque.
So we have two extremes: the Moslem fighting against the decadent West, and a member of the BNP who, presumably, has a rather higher opinion of Adolf Hitler than the rest of us.
This is the importance of this book: the argument that if an opinion is dangerous, it must be suppressed.
As the author rightly argues, the suppression of opinions is now a major plank in what passes for thinking on the left.
And nowhere is this more relevant than in the left's obsession with "multiculturalism".
People who are uncomfortable with this concept - probably a majority - know to keep quiet.
Diversity - pluralism - is a normal feature of an open society.
Multiculturalism, however, is something different. As the author puts it, it seeks " to shield non-European cultures from moral judgements. In the mind of today's multiculturalist, the cultural practices of minority groups are above reproach, no matter where they lead."
And we have seen where they sometimes lead on this side of the pond. There was the African boy whose body was found in the River Thames. His injuries - and death - were the result of witchcraft practices imported from Nigeria.
Many years ago, my next door neighbour sent his daughter back to a Middle Eastern country to an arranged marriage which she did not want.
These are examples of practices which multiculturalism dare not debate, and similar examples are given in this book.
The Thought Police in the UK are active in an unlikely area: criminology. As in the US, there is silence on the matter of black crime statistics. It's inviting a charge of racism to even mention - as the author does - that "the crime statistics speak for themeslves. ... Although African American men constitute only six per cent of the overall population, they account for roughly 40 per cent of the country's violent crimes."
Police officers in the UK who have made similar statements have come to regret it. After 7/7 there was talk of the police "targetting" young Moslems. This was instantly stamped on. Of course white old ladies were just as likely to blow themselves up on the Underground, how could you have thought anything else?!
The difficulty posed when facts are suppressed, is that rational discussion of why young black men are more likely to be involved in violent crime goes off the agenda.
The left undulges in a kind of Christian Science approach to human affairs. The Christian Scientist believes that if you are ill you can think yourself well - by reading Science and Health - because illness is the result of bad thinking, and Mary Baker Eddy's book will correct your thoughts.
So, for the left, thinking that someone is a criminal makes them a criminal: they are the victim of your bad thoughts.
The left's delusional thinking is ultimately an indiaction of its deep seated wish to return to the comforts a closed-society where "I think" has been abolished. It is a victory for Hitler, Stalin, and the Inquisition: someone else knows best.