Lord Pearson of Rannoch has been accused of committing a hate crime by asking in the House of Lords the question: “May we please talk about Islam?” he has also been warned that, if he asks his question again, he will be in serious trouble. Not for his making a defamatory remark or for hurling insults around but merely for asking a polite question in the mother of parliaments wherein, of all places, there is supposed to be freedom of speech. The very word “parliament” connotes speaking.
By what convolutions of twisted logic or perversions of social morality could Lord Pearson’s action in asking that question be considered a crime? A statement may amount to a crime if, for instance, it is a false accusation: call an honest man a liar and a thief and you have committed an offence. But a question is not a statement, because it does not report a fact or even an alleged fact. Lord Pearson committed no crime – not even one puzzlingly described as a hate crime.
Where might we go to observe the perpetration of a hate crime? Try this…
Yesterday thousands gathered in the streets of Lahore and Rawalpindi to demand the death penalty for Asia Bibi, a fruit-picker accused of blasphemy. The accused has been in custody for the last nine years. Appeals from first Pope Benedict and then Pope Francis for her to be freed have been refused. This is the story…
In 2009 Bibi was working in the fields alongside other Muslim women. She went to a well to get a drink. One of her companions called out, “Don’t drink that – it’s haram!” Which means forbidden. She did take a drink and the other women called her “a filthy Christian,” then claimed that, by drinking the banned water from their cup, Bibi had made the cup unclean.
They demanded that she convert to Islam. Bibi replied: “I’m not going to convert. I believe in my religion and in Jesus Christ, who died on the cross for the sins of mankind. What did your Prophet Mohammed ever do to save mankind? And why should it be me that converts instead of you?”
Interesting to see that, like Lord Pearson, Bibi made no statement and issued no accusations: she merely asked two questions. For her having asked these questions, the many thousands organised by Tehreek-e-Labaik Pakistan (TLP) – the Pakistan blasphemy party – screamed for Bibi’s death. How quaint of them to maintain a blasphemy party in Pakistan! Ours retired when the Spanish Inquisition packed up
Now, I dare say Bibi’s response to the Muslim women was fairly robust, but was it so terrible that she should be put to death?
Of course not. But then in the biased jurisprudence of the so called hate crime, she is deserving of condemnation. If there has been any crime in this matter it was committed by the thousands baying for Bibi’s death. Don’t be absurd, Mullen! You should know that in the world according to political correctness – the world in which we are now obliged to live – it is impossible for a Muslim to commit a hate crime against a Christian. Only the followers of Allah and his Prophet have the statutory right to be offended.