Tuesday, August 07, 2018

A Storm in a Teacup

In last Sunday's Telegraph article Boris Johnson said, of the burka, that "it is absolutely ridiculous that people should choose to go around looking like letter boxes," and today I find that he has been jumped on by several Labour MPs (and others) and basically called a racist (see for yourself). I find this strange. If you called a nun "a penguin" you would not be called a racist, despite our history of racist jokes about stupid men called "an Irishman." And Labour MPs want Catholic votes just as much as Muslim votes. Ironically, Boris was saying that although burkas are ridiculous and sexist we should not ban the full burka. (The burka has been banned in several European countries on the grounds that it is too sexist. Ironically, it is those who wanted us to remain in the EU who have been the most eager to jump on Boris about this. Incidentally, I voted to remain.) I agree that Boris is, in general, a bit of a Johnson, but even in a competitive environment like politics, truth is not unimportant. We need to learn to give the devil his due, before it all goes to hell (as a result of the actual dynamics of competitive teamwork). And has no one noticed that the burka (like the habit) signifies that its wearer does not believe in, for example, gay marriage? Would anyone be surprised to find that most wearers of burkas are a bit racist?

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