With thanks to GLW for passing this draft document to the Junius Team.
Gerard Batten MEP
Policy Discussion Document
10th February 2011
Multiculturalism has failed
Multiculturalism depends on the proposition that all cultures, cultural beliefs, customs and practices are equally valid. Mass immigration into many western countries for the last forty years or more has brought with it some cultures and cultural practices that are alien to western cultures and liberal, democratic political systems. Instead of taking a robust attitude against these alien practices western countries have mostly adopted an attitude of appeasement and cultural relativism. Western Governments have been terrified of criticising or standing up against these practices for fear of being branded ‘racist’ or ‘Islamaphobic’.
Most European and Western countries are multi-ethnic societies and is no reason why people of difference racial and ethnic origins cannot live together peacefully; but to do so requires emphasising those things we have in common rather than those things that separate us. It requires that all citizens living in a given state have broadly the same allegiance, loyalty and belief in a common set of public and political institutions and the acceptance of one legal system. Multiculturalism does precisely the opposite: it creates different and competing groups within one public and political space and is a recipe for division and conflict.
Many European and Western countries have adopted a policy of state-sponsored multiculturalism, designed to preserve and enshrine the beliefs and cultural practices of migrants and to protect and advance them by law and public subsidy. The objective was that the policy of multiculturalism would help absorb and integrate vast waves of migrants from foreign lands. In that it has conspicuously failed – as now has been publicly attested by figures such as Trevor Philips Head of the Race Relations Commission, President Angela Merkel of Germany, President Sarkosy of France, and latterly Prime Minister David Cameron of the UK, to name just four.
However from the point of view of those groups that use multiculturalism to promote their own separate interests it has and is succeeding and they have a vested interest in seeing it continue.
Private Multiculturalism Good: Public Multiculturalism Bad.
A clear distinction must be drawn between private and public multiculturalism. The private practice of religious and cultural beliefs, customs and traditions should be precisely that – private. We can all enjoy the private practice of different cultures and beliefs and share them with our friends and neighbours. That is a good and positive thing that can help bring people together.
The public policy of state-sponsored multiculturalism is quite another thing and it has created an increasingly more fractured, divided, contentious and uneasy societies. It cannot go unsaid that the biggest beneficiaries of this public policy of multiculturalism are Islamic fundamentalist and extremists who use it to extend their own power and influence in order to bring about their long term goal of an Islamic or Islamic dominated state in each one of those countries where they settle. Multiculturalism also undermines those moderate Muslims who wish to embrace Western values but see power and influence being extended to their extremist co-religionists.
Islamic fundamentalism is the cuckoo in the Western multicultural nest. We can either address it now or be destroyed by it in the course of time.
This short paper is not a detailed history, analysis and critique of multiculturalism and its failure. It is taken as a given that it has failed and has to be dismantled. The points below are suggested policies that could be adopted by political parties and governments of any political colour and in any country in the world that wishes to preserve and promote common western liberal democratic values. The points below are specifically aimed at Britain but can adapted as required.
1. Recognise that Christianity is the cultural heritage of Britain and affirm the secular nature of government and public institutions. This should be recognised by an exception for the Church of England as the historically established church but bishops should be removed from their positions in the House of Lords and the Monarch should lose the power (exercised through the Prime Minister) to appoint the Archbishop of Canterbury.
2. A commitment to end the policy of state-sponsored and funded multiculturalism by local and national government.
3. A commitment to promote a common public culture, expressed in a common language (excluding existing historic regional differences), one legal system and one set of political institutions – none other should be formally recognised by the state.
4. There must be equal application of the law. There can be no separation of people based on religious practices in public places, e.g. in swimming pools and hospital chapels.
5. There must be one language used in national and political institutions and publicly funded places (excluding historical differences such a Welsh in Wales or Gaelic in Scotland). In England only English must be displayed in public buildings such as local and national government offices, universities, colleges, schools, hospitals, clinics etc.
6. Repeal the Act of Parliament that recognises Sharia law in some tribunals, (e.g. for family law, child custody, inheritance etc). Sharia law must be given no official recognition or legal status whatsoever.
7. Repeal the Act (???) that gives official recognition to Islamic Banking. There must be no financial or banking regulations based on religious law.
8. Repeal those Acts (???) which give recognition to polygamous marriage for tax or social security and benefits purposes. There must be no official or legal recognition of polygamous marriages.
9. Stop all government funding to organisations that promote religious fundamentalist or extremist views, e.g. the Muslim Council of Britain, the Quilliam Foundation, the Union of Imams & Mosques in the UK and Ireland etc. Any organisation that requests public funding must be required to sign and actively abide by a Code of Conduct (see Appendix I).
10. Social Security and benefits payments can only be claimed in English where the recipient has been living in the UK for 12 months or more. For those who have entered the UK and do not speak English subsidised English classes must be made available.
11. No granting of planning permission to religious organisations that: do not abide by and actively practice a Code of Conduct (see Appendix I); are funded from outside the UK unless they have a special dispensation from the Home Secretary, such dispensations should discretionary and will only granted where it can clearly be shown where the money originates from, and where it can be demonstrated that it is not from extremist sources, or is intended to promote religious fundamentalist or extremist views.
12. Repeal the Religious Hatred Act (???). The promotion of hatred or violence against individuals or groups is catered for under the normal criminal law. No religious belief system or ideology may be protected from criticism by law.
13. Ensure that the law on forced marriages and female genital mutilation is rigorously enforced.
14. Religious schools should only be allowed where they can sign and show actively to abide by a Code of Conduct (see Appendix I).
15. Repeal the Act of Parliament that gives exception for ritual slaughter for religious reasons. These are outmoded and barbaric practices that have no place in the 21st century or n the light of humane animal welfare policies.
16. Something on the funding of universities???
17. Enact a law of face coverings in public places. (see Appendix II)
Code of Conduct
To be added as per existing ‘Affirmation’
Face Coverings Policy
To be added later a per existing ‘burka and face coverings policy’.
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