Bismillah-hir Rahman-nir Raheem (in the Name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful)

Yet again, Jack Straw, former home secretary and MP for Blackburn, is causing a stir and offending Muslims across the UK.

In 2006 Jack Straw, then the Leader of the House of Commons, created uproar by asking Muslim women to take off their niqabs when addressing him. Asked whether he would prefer veils to be abolished completely, Straw said: “Yes. It needs to be made clear I am not talking about being prescriptive but with all the caveats, yes, I would rather.” [Source]. The arrogance of the man! Now, on 8th January 2011, this former government minister and jew, has openly attacked the integrity of Pakistani men.

After two Pakistani men were jailed for raping and abusing girls in Derby, Jack Straw made a sweeping statement, racially stereotyping Pakistani men as preying on white women! The judge in the Derby case said that the races of the victims and their abusers was coincidental – a fact that Jack Straw has blatantly ignored in his insensitive and condemning comments on the Pakistani community.

Jack Straw said: “Pakistanis, let’s be clear, are not the only people who commit sexual offences, and overwhelmingly the sex offenders’ wings of prisons are full of white sex offenders.

“But there is a specific problem which involves Pakistani heritage men… who target vulnerable young white girls.

“We need to get the Pakistani community to think much more clearly about why this is going on and to be more open about the problems that are leading to a number of Pakistani heritage men thinking it is OK to target white girls in this way.” [see BBC website]

It seems that Jack Straw is leading the charge against Muslims and our communities. He has labelled all Pakistani men as being immoral and as sexual predators lusting after white women. He focused heavily on Pakistani men and hardly mentioned other races. This is Britain, where inter-racial relationships are commonplace but for some reason, according to Mr. Straw, it’s a big no no for Pakistani men. Out of the rapes and abuses against white women in the UK, do Pakistanis represent the largest number of offenders? Are Pakistanis the only men who go after white women? The answer is simply NO! And to label an entire race in this way is completely and utterly wrong and unjust.

Jack Straw is a Member of Parliament representing Blackburn, which has a sizeable Pakistani community – how dare he misrepresent his constituents in this manner! And there is a lesson here for those Muslims in Blackburn who voted in Jack Straw! Clearly there should be calls for an apology from Mr. Straw and for him to step down from such a public position. Where are his statements on white men preying on white women, or asian women, or black women? Where are his statements on black men preying on white women? He has made a statement that is completely unfair to Pakistanis and Muslims, demonising and unfair to men and women of all races and cultures.

There is bad and good in all communities and religions, so why single out Pakistanis? This is no different to the way the Black community in the UK was singled out in the 70s and 80s – the racism that is being displayed by this Member of Parliament is disgusting! He may as well join the BNP. Do not men of other colours and faiths not prey on women and girls?

Another point is maybe Mr. Straw should not be talking in such a racist manner when his own brother was convicted for sexual assault on a 16 year old girl. See this article by the Independent newspaper. Obviously Mr. Straw knows how damaging such a conviction is, not only for the accused but for the accused’s family. So does this mean that Jack Straw will openly say that White men are sexual predators, preying on young women from all races?? Such a hypocritical view being displayed here by Mr. Straw, considering his history.

WHAT’S ISLAMOPHOBIA GOT TO DO WITH PAKISTANIS?

So why connect this incident with Islamophobia? Jack Straw is clearly talking about Paksitani men, not Islam, so why am I putting the two together?

The reason I am doing this is because the public will be doing this. A sizeable proportion of the Muslims in this country are Pakistani and the public do not see Pakistanis as being different to Muslims. To them, Pakistanis are Muslims and Muslims are Pakistanis. This is the general public image of Islam in the UK, even though Muslims are from every race and colour and culture. If you asked a member of the public in the UK to describe a typical Muslim man, what would they come up with? A black man? A white man? Not likely. A Pakistani looking man? More likely.

So Jack Straw’s attack on Pakistani men, rightly or wrongly, is an attack also on Muslims. People don’t see the two as being separate and different, so for all intents and purposes, it’s an attack on both. And any attack on Muslims is Islamophobia in action! Anyone with Jack Straw’s political background will be well aware of this.

What’s the real purpose of this outburst by Jack Straw? Is his jewish heritage playing a role here? Don’t forget he was against the niqaab and was one of the first high profile figures in the UK to speak out against the niqaab – and look what happened after that! People felt more brave to speak out against the niqaab and it has become one of the campaign messages for fascist and racist groups like the BNP (British National Party) and EDL (English Defence League). People feel it is OK to attack Muslims and Islam and have no fear in doing so. Not once are they questioning whether their attacks are founded in truth or stereotype, whether their attacks are driven by fear or sound reasoning and understanding of the issues.

Now that Jack Straw, a high profile figure in UK politics, has made such comments, what is to come? More attacks on the Pakistani community? More reasons to make the community feel isolated, picked on and demonised? Is this an underhand campaign to drive out Muslims from the UK?

Stand up against this man and his comments! Don’t let him influence the rest of UK politics and the general public with his distorted opinions and views.

Stand Up 4 Islam!

Follow DawudAdam on Twitter
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BBC News – Jack Straw: Some white girls are ‘easy meat’ for abuse
The Independent – Jack Straw’s brother found guilty of indecent assault on girl, 16
Jewish Chronicle – How jewish is Jack Straw?
Guardian newspaper – White girls seen as ‘easy meat’ by Pakistani rapists, says Jack Straw
This is Lancashire – Jack Straw in Wikileaks ‘whispering campaign’ claim
Asian Image (Lancashire) – From terrorists to sexual predators: Who’d be a British Pakistani man right now?
BBC News – Dutch government backs burqa ban
The Economist – Banning the burka: A bad idea…

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