Thursday, 5 May 2011

A Result : Part1 - Daily Mail

A Result : Part1 - Daily Mail
A Result : Part2 - End Water Poverty

Whinging and whining, sometimes it feels like the Muslim communities pastime-ing. (You see now why I should never attempt poetry).

It is something that BFTF tries to avoid, by doing somethng positive to make a change rather than just sitting at home telling friends that the establishment, or whoever, hates Muslims (they would agree, of course, but that won't do anything to resolve the situation)

To this end, BFTF noticed a really rather racist statement in the comments section of a Daily Mail article recently. Wondering what to do about this, BFTF noticed an "abuse" button next to the post (which was near the top of the "best rated" comments section).

A click on the button allowed the composition of a message to the Daily Mail stating that the comment was racist and demonised an entire country - and by implication the Pakistani community in the UK.

Somewhat to BFTF's surprise, within 24hrs the offending comment was gone.

I'd call that a result. A small result, but a result nonetheless.

If we all got a small result like that every month, that would, inshallah, add up to something big.

But perhaps we can go a little further. One wonders why the post was put up in the first place, given that comments are moderated. Why should the Daily Mail be allowed to peddle such hate? It is inconceivable that this kind of comment would be allowed for any other group in the UK. Why should the Muslim community accept this kind of treatment?

So and email followed to the local MP stating that, whilst press freedom is important, that does not absolve the Government from speaking out when publications such as the Daily Mail peddle hate and innuendo against minorities. This kind of behaviour actively degrades community cohesion and makes it MORE difficult for those working to find common ground between communities to do their work. In what way, BFTF asked, does the MP and their party, speak out against this kind of divisive media reporting.

There are some powerful force multipliers in the Muslim community - they are the mosques and community centres. Politicans listen to those who represent the most people and for the Muslim community (or rather communities) this means the mosques. Mosques can genuinely influence the attitudes and policies of the state, especially when they work on an agenda that is based on fairness, equality and the common good . So an email also went out to mosques requesting that they consider also asking their local MP's what they were doing to combat the kind of reporting often shown by the Daily Mail.

Lastly, the local council has a "Muslim Communities Facilititator", so an email went off to them asking for this issue to be raised at the next meeting, along with an offer that BFTF would be happy to help with drafting of emails and letters, but that mosques (or the MCF) needed to take responsibility for sending them, chasing for a response and communicating all this to their congregations.

Now, at this point, BFTF was all set to wrap up this post as "job done", but they thought "This is all a bit negative. Surely there is something somewhere we can praise. And it turns out that a mere 30seconds searching found something wonderful that a local MP was supporting, something that certainly needed "bigging up" and praise. You can find out what was Part 2 of this post. . .

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