time to ban the EDL posters

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Boris Badenov
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Jul 12 2010 14:31

Jewishness is just a religion, therefore you can't be racist against Jews.

Road Runner
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Jul 15 2010 08:11
jef costello wrote:
OK then so you're sectarian. The way you talk about muslims is similar to how racists (and most bigots) talk and is underpinned with racism, especially the non-sensical idea of the English as a race.

I don't accept the tag, as I'm not sectarian, but yes, that would be a more accurate description.

Road Runner
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Jul 15 2010 08:15

Mods/admin, please delete.

Road Runner
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Jul 15 2010 08:13
allybaba wrote:
Lol you ban people on EDL forums who have different viewpoints. Pot calling kettle.

Personally, I've never banned anyone for having a different point of view, in fact I encourage alternative views and discussion. Obviously trolling or deliberate disruption of the forum will get you a ban. But this thread is calling for the automatic ban, regardless of behaviour and contribution, which I think is somewhat different?

Road Runner
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Jul 15 2010 08:16
Mike Harman wrote:
While neither Christianity nor Buddhism in the UK is associated with any particular ethnic or cultural groups, the specificities of immigration patterns into the UK and communalist government policy mean that the majority of people who identify as 'muslim' in the UK are from Bangladeshi or Pakistani backgrounds. So while it's not strictly accurate to talk about being racist against muslims, in practical terms that is how it's experienced on both sides. http://libcom.org/library/croissant-roses-new-labour-muslim-britain covers the history of this pretty well.

As you said, technically my phrase is accurate. I do take your point that many/majority Muslims (UK) are of Asian origin and therefore it could be perceived as a race issue. But if that were the case, you would have to say why aren't Sikhs and Hindus included as they're from the Indian sub-continent as well. So what you would be saying is that, we're racist against Muslim Asians. To my mind, you are either racist against Asians or you aren't.

It really is about Islam, which isn't even a religion, it is a total belief system, a total way of life, unlike any other mainstream religion. I also made my initial point because I'm fed up with people using the racist card to close down any discussion and automatically invalidate any other viewpoint.

Road Runner
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Jul 15 2010 08:22
baboon wrote:
I agree with the arguments against the idea that, because it's a belief issue, however tenuously held, you can't be racist against muslims. We have seen it very clearly demonstrated by Arthur above that you can.

What Arthur, and the EDL generally, represent, is the racist agenda, including a major racist campaign against muslims, carried out over the last ten years by the British state and orchestrated in great part by the previous Labour government.

You're not getting it yet, are you?

Islam is NOT a race, therefore you cannot be racist against it, just like you can't be racist against a Christian. I know you'd like to change the definition to suit you, because it's nice to bandy the word racist and all its negative connotations about, but I'm afraid it just doesn't work like that.

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Ed
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Jul 15 2010 09:25
Road Runner wrote:
It really is about Islam, which isn't even a religion, it is a total belief system, a total way of life, unlike any other mainstream religion.

This is complete fucking bollocks. Go to Stamford Hill in north London and tell me that the Jewish community don't treat their religion as a total belief system. That's a place where the women have to shave their heads when they get married and aren't allowed to look at non-Jews in eye, or where on Saturday, Jews can't even use telephones or press the button at the traffic lights! Similarly, in the US anyway, there are a significant amount of Christians who don't let their kids go to school and teach them at home so that they can learn about how evolution isn't real, how gays are an abomination to society and how the US was founded as a Christian nation/'the new Jerusalem'.

Equally, I went to school with loads of Muslim kids and we got on like a Benneton advert. Some of them were more religious than others, some of them fasted for ramadan but (obviously) all of them took the day of school for Eid.. loads of the guys would go to Mosque but only coz it was where they went to meet girls and loads of them would come with us on nights out (with all the drink and drugs that entailed). One of my best mates is a white guy whose girlfriend comes from a Muslim family, her Dad prays everyday, and he's welcomed into the family (even if they are a bit conservative with letting him stay over, but then, so are my girlfriend's Catholic parents)

The main point I want you to grasp about this is that you are ignorant and full of shit. Religions are all shit and individuals are accidentally born into one or another of them and just have to cope with it. Some get really into it, some leave it entirely and some find a middle-way that doesn't really make any sense to me but what business of mine is that.

Why you guys single out Muslims as 'the worst' is basically coz you've got over-active imaginations and watch too much TV. You might try and use the 'Islam isn't a race' card to get out of it but when all religions clearly act in similar ways it makes it particularly strange to single them out.

Some might even call it racist.

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Chilli Sauce
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Jul 15 2010 09:53

Not to mention the fact that White Christians have committed all sorts of acts of terrorism. Leaving aside the fact that George Bush justified the invasion of Iraq by calling it his Christian duty, there's the private terrorism of the Oklahoma City bombing, the dozens of abortion clinics bombed, attacks on gays and gay clubs, the Ku Klux Klan, the list goes on and that's just in the US... The point being that all religions are irrational and breed violence and hate within the fundamentalist interpretations. So the EDL can't possibly claim the Islam has some monopoly on violence.

Second, the EDL/far-right claims to be against Muslims (or even just "fundamentalist Muslims") but in practice they paint all Arabs with the same brush. When there's EDL demonstrators yelling "Paki" at marches, are you really trying to tell they've inquired as to whether that brown-skinned person is religious? Absolutely not, it's just a cover for their anti-Arab racism.

gypsy
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Jul 15 2010 11:45
Ed wrote:

One of my best mates is a white guy whose girlfriend comes from a Muslim family, her Dad prays everyday, and he's welcomed into the family (even if they are a bit conservative with letting him stay over.

I would say that her family are liberal. From my own experience most south asian cultures muslim or not will not accept someone from outside their culture and faith as a prospective husband or wife for their daughter or son. If the son/daughter does follow the path of wanting to marry they may run the risk of being ostracized. This is more a culture thing than religion.

Although in Islam it does typically enforce a limited form of endogamy - Muslim men can take chaste wives from neighbouring non-Muslim populations but Muslim women are normally forbidden to marry outside of the Muslim community. Some religions are even more inflexible and intolerant.

The EDL are not interested in ending segregation between working class communities. They want to encourage splits and I am pretty sure would love a race riot. Also as stated in other EDL threads they blame everything and i mean everything on islam.

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miles
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Jul 15 2010 11:06

I agree with allybaba - that particular family sound very liberal. Most asians in the UK, (especially the first generation, 60s/70s migrants) are very conservative on this issue. There is the (hypocracy) of men having non-muslim partners as opposed to women, which has also been a factor in so-called 'honour killings'.

Then again, it's even more codified in Judaism, as you can strictly only be 'jewish' if your mother is..

A key point missed out here is perhaps the idea that as communists / libertarians we are against religion per se, but the issue isn't posed as this or that particular religion....maybe that's for another thread.

A new article on the EDL on the ICC website, here

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Ed
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Jul 15 2010 12:08
Quote:
I would say that her family are liberal. From my own experience most muslim south asian cultures will not accept someone from outside their culture and faith as a prospective husband or wife for their daughter or son.

I'd agree (btw, they're not south Asian, they're Iranian), but a) I'd say the same was true for all south Asian cultures, not just Muslims and b) her family are still Muslim and their liberalism wouldn't stop EDLers from chanting "Muslim bombers off our streets!" at them..

My point isn't that Islam is some tolerant religion that we should embrace or whatever, it's that there are sizeable sections of all religions that act like lunatics (miles picked up on Jews but the same could be said for Christians, Hindus etc) and the EDL picking up on just the Muslims is racist. I mean, all their bollocks about 'Oh, we're only against fundamentalist Islam' is so transparent its a joke.. what the fuck are they demonstrating in Harrow for? I've lived not far from there for almost my entire life and never once picked up any hint of fundamentalist Islamic activity..

Not that I expect that smarmy racist-apologist Road Runner to actually address any of this, he'll just come back with some nonsense about "but it's a religion not a race, so I can't be racist, but it's not even a religion, it's a total belief system". I was under the impression that religions were total belief systems; otherwise what, a partial belief system? If you can demonstrate to me how Islam is any more of a total belief system than any other religion, then fuck it, I'll join the EDL..

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Khawaga
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Jul 15 2010 13:47
Road Runner wrote:
But this thread is calling for the automatic ban, regardless of behaviour and contribution, which I think is somewhat different?

It's not automatic. Arthur posted here for a very long time before he was banned.

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Nate
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Jul 15 2010 16:49

I can see where folk are coming from with the "we don't ban for politics" stuff. It seems to me though that the EDL is not just a point of view, it's an organization that is actively pursuing a deeply reactionary agenda. I mean, say a poster here wrote some awful racist crap on another site but behaved here, I could see perhaps letting them stay (I'm generally for heavyhandedness with bans, personally so if it was me I'd ban them but whatever). Having fucked up views is different from belonging to an organization that does the shit the EDL does. I don't see much difference between letting EDL folk post here and letting cops post here.

petey
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Jul 15 2010 17:15
Ed wrote:
Road Runner wrote:
It really is about Islam, which isn't even a religion, it is a total belief system, a total way of life, unlike any other mainstream religion.

This is complete fucking bollocks. Go to Stamford Hill in north London and tell me that the Jewish community don't treat their religion as a total belief system.

i see ed beat me to it. here in nyc it would be borough park, not stamford hill, but the idea would be the same anywhere: the 600+ laws in the OT (leviticus, i believe) form a total way of life.

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Tojiah
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Jul 15 2010 18:03

No need to go very far afield, if you ask me. I've got two words for you, Road Runner: Northern Ireland.

Steve_j
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Jul 15 2010 19:54
miles wrote:
A new article on the EDL on the ICC website, here

.

Quote:
The fundamental problem with anti-fascism is that it aims to convince us that we should ally with ‘democratic' bourgeois parties who are no less our enemy than the fascists.

Whilst this is a fair criticism of "popular front" antifacism, it is not a justifiable criticism of antifacism in general. Whilst i agree with much of the sentiment in the article, it says nothing new and offers no alternatives to old criticisms.

Steve_j
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Jul 15 2010 20:16
Road Runner wrote:
Islam is NOT a race, therefore you cannot be racist against it

So as "English" or "British" are not a race, any discrimination against them in regards to their culture by non english is not racist therefore ok? As westerners are not a race any discrimination against them in regards to their culture is not racist and therefore ok?

Good to know you dirty english, western fuck! grin

No more churches, their priests fuck kids!!! Fucking perverts you are!

No more forcing your daughters and wives to walk the street semi naked!

No more world cup, it causes people to beat their wives!!! http://www.guardian.co.uk/society/2010/jul/07/domestic-violence-surge-england-world-cup

Ect ect.

Seriously, you and your EDL mates are idiots. You talk about banning the building of new mosques and then in the same breath cry about being banned from a forum about something that you are completly opposed to. (and yes you are opposed to us, i read your posts on the EDL forum)

In short, why do you just fuck off and then no one will have to ban you. Do everyone a favour. You get me?

baboon
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Jul 15 2010 21:29

Steve, on the article on the EDL in World Revolution, the position has to be welcomed inasmuch as a position is taken. I think that the biggest danger of fascism is the alliance of anti-fascism and the democratic bourgeoisie. Certainly that's been the biggest danger, in terms of life and limb, to the working class historically. These elements today are not really fascists, they're racist and nationalist and represent a danger and certainly express a weakness in the working class receptive to bourgeois ideology - in the case of the EDL, the whole anti-muslim campaign generated and maintained by the Labour government and the general structures of the state for a decade.
Fascism is a particular expression of capitalism relevant to particular historical circumstances; immanent moves towards war, extreme statification, terror and the defeat of the working class.

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Chilli Sauce
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Jul 15 2010 22:16

Just on that last point, the historian in me is always weary of throwing around the term "fascist". Fascism was an historical anomaly that developed out of a particular social situation (namely massive social unrest and a self-proclaimed socialist working class movement) with particular characteristics (right-wing populism, extreme nationalism--with an exaggerated national narrative and a call to 'traditional' values, class collaboration, demagoguery, racist scapegoating, and a cult around and an all-powerful leader) that laid bare the role of the state in using violence and authoritarianism to protect capital by instituting a corporatist, command capitalist system.

Lots of movements have some of these characteristics (the Republican right in the US might actually have a majority, for example), but fascism itself has /all/ these characteristics. EDL falls into this camp.

The BNP is a more interesting example in that the leadership has in the past been openly pro-fascist, but the majority of the followers are sucked in by the right-wing populism publicly espoused by the party.

Without acknowledging this complexity, we shoot ourselves in the foot when arguing with non-fascist racists. Call them out on their racism, but if they're not actually fascists, they'll point out one of the fascist characteristics they don't embody and use this as their defense.

Phew. Sorry about that.

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Alf
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Jul 15 2010 22:27

Whilst this is a fair criticism of "popular front" antifacism, it is not a justifiable criticism of antifacism in general. Whilst i agree with much of the sentiment in the article, it says nothing new and offers no alternatives to old criticisms.

The problem is that anti-fascism 'in general' is popular front anti-fascism. I would make a distinction between proletarian self-defence and anti-fascism, because workers' organisations and struggles are not just faced with attack from far right gangs.

That said, one thing missing from the article was this new development of the EDL directly threatening political meetings, mainly anarchist ones it seems. This does call for a response if it becomes more widespread, i.e. preparing in advance to defend meetings. This doesn't rule out politically arguing with people influenced by EDL ideas, but neither should we lower our guard given the physical threat they pose.

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jef costello
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Jul 15 2010 23:11

'in general' communism is totalitarianism in eastern Europe and Asia.
I think the development of threatening political meetings is a step towards what fascist groups would do, or perhaps towards what might be termed squaddism.

gwry
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Jul 18 2010 08:33

Lets face it, the left needs the EDL. The SWP recruited very well via the Anti-Nazi League in the late 1970's, and uses the EDL to create the kind of romantic 1930's "No Pasaran" atmosphere, that their "leading cadres" love spouting. The guilt ridden middle-class students of the "hard" left love all this - "...just like Orwell's "Homage to Catalonia" isn't it Toby?" So lets make the EDL nazi's, then we can get more mugs into our crap party, so they can get their heads kicked in by confused and angry young workers.
The EDL is witnesss to the fact that the left has had nothing to say to the British working class for 30 years, that it speaks a totally different language, and is perceived,correctly, as being both middle-class and liberal, and therefore on the otherside of the fence.The fact that anarchists in this country have fallen into the SWP trap, or rather walked into it, reveals the poverty of anarchist thought in Britain today.