Friday, 29 March 2013

Ice Lettuce

By: Sandbad Ex Muslim

It was after work, just end of another pointless day in Wigan. As usual on my way back I went to town center to shop for some groceries to prepare dinner. At that time of day Wigan town center offers two types of shopping. First is a massive Morrisons super market selling all different sort of things and second a local market with many small shops in it.

I walked past the Morrisons and made my way into local market and went straight to where a green grocery ran by a group of bearded and mustache-less men is located right opposite a chip shop which sells fried half chickens. Didn't feel like chicken that day as it was what I had for last several days so went straight to greengrocers to buy some salad veggies.

Asked for prices, cucumber was 70p each, ice lettuce 69p each and tomato 1.70 per kilo. Couldn't help not saying something to the greengrocer with his distinctive bearded and mustache-less appearance so I joked:

You planning to bankrupt Morrisons or what? You are selling ice lettuce much cheaper!

He asked in response:

How much is ice lettuce in Morrisons?

“One pound” I said and while I was picking the tomatoes and putting them inside a plastic bag I said:

You would expect Morrisons to sell ice lettuce much cheaper! Isn't it? If you as a small shop can sell them 69p each and still make a profit we can assume Morrisons should be able to sell them even cheaper as it owns an established chain of supply and a massive economy of scale.

Then I passed the bag full of tomatoes to greengrocer to weigh and looked at him unsure of his reaction to the comment I just made. I was more expecting him to remain silent and say nothing in response but he looked back at me and to my surprise threw his shoulders up and while he was holding the bag full of tomatoes in his left hand  he raised his right hand in the air as if he was giving a speech to a whole crowd and with a feeling of relief and enthusiasm said:

“Yahood*”!  They are “Yahood*”!!!

I couldn't hold myself from laughing after seeing his reaction and hearing his response. So while I was laughing I tried to sound disappointed and unsure and I told him:

You are stereotyping man! Its not right! I know Jewish people who are not greedy like that.

He looked back at me with all his doubts clear on his face. Then he turned around and got busy with weighing and preparing my bags leaving me to stand there by myself. I didn't say no more, only my hand reached and touched my face just to remind me that I hadn't shaved for a whole week and that I massively look and sound middle-eastern at the same time.

After a while he turned back and handed over my bags. I paid the money and when he was giving back my change, in order to thank me for shopping from his shop he said:

Thank you “brother”!

And I walked away with my ice lettuce, cucumber and tomatoes thinking of the new friend I just made.

*Yahood = Jewish

Tuesday, 19 March 2013

Righteousness in Islam and BNP

By: Sandbad Ex Muslim
Member of CEMB, Founder and Organizer of Northern Ex-Muslim meet up group

I was reading through Alistair Barbour’s 'anti-nationailst' Weblog here where I came across this leaflet
Apparently published to warn younger BNP members from falling victim to child groomers!
Being an ex-Muslim this really attracted my attention due to its heavy use of race and appearance (stereotypic Islamic appearance in this case) as a factor to identify child groomers.

Being from Iran and having lived a majority of my life under an Islamic theocracy which follows the same populist approach in its propaganda against the west (heavy use of stereotypic images and indirect brainwashing) and as an atheist and ex-Muslim; seeing this leaflet I found myself stuck between two extremes of which neither I can relate to.
(Examples of Iranian stereotypic images and Propaganda)

I have rejected Islam 'and religion in general' and 'as an atheist' I obviously can’t join the extreme Islamic side of the dispute since non-questioning believe in Islam and its official political perspective is the basic requirement of joining the Islamic league. 
On the other hand I can’t become a white British person neither in order to join the BNP side so looking at this leaflet and being from Islamic “race” but no longer a Muslim I feel as being stuck in no man’s land with bullets flying over my head fired from one side by Islamic extremists and on the other side by BNP.

This leaflet is supposed to be a guideline to keep the youth from falling victim to child groomers but in my perspective it fails to do so for several reasons.

Firstly; its emphasis is mostly on the foreign roots of some child grooming cases that have happened in the recent past here in the UK, rather than the more obvious and universal signs of child grooming. 
It is racially based to a level that if the offending paedophile “to be” will be a person from white British background this leaflet almost entirely fails to provide any hint or protection to a potential victim. So in my view by referring to a few well known cases of Muslim child grooming cases the subject of child grooming is being used as a tool to publish racially motivated propaganda by BNP.

Second; this leaflet has a very simplistic approach to a whole complicated social problem. It depicts a certain group of people as the cause of the problem and totally ignores underlying issues behind it. Just as Nazi regime blamed Jews; Iranian Islamic theocracy blames America and Israel, now BNP is indiscriminately blaming brown and bearded Muslims for being the people who are solely responsible for child grooming in order to build up support around the BNP’s racist agenda.  
As if resolution of this problem is a natural consequence of getting rid of all brown and bearded Muslims.

Going back to the subject of Muslim child grooming gangs, during my schooling years in Iran I was introduced to Islam’s “Islamo-centric” point of view which commonly causes Muslims to accept they are superior to everyone else as a result of being Muslims. To me this introduction happened during what I now call a systematic government sponsored brainwashing as a part of normal schooling program in Iran – I later on rejected these ideas and the superficial feeling of superiority which came with it, but I can imagine these men committed and then justified their outrageous acts of child abuse as a result of a similar “Islamo- centric” mind-set.

I think the false feeling of superiority that they had over their victims on ideological and maybe a lesser extend racial bases made them able to commit these acts and then to justify their behaviour for their own consciences. I think as Muslims they saw themselves as legitimately having the “right” to act the way they did towards their victims and saw their victims as deserving no better treatment. 

So in conclusion with their racist point of view, “them and us” point of view, the Muslim child grooming gangs depicted in BNP’s leaflet saw the white victims of theirs as worthless subjects for their sick sexual fantasies who didn’t deserve any better treatment, and so they justified themselves on racial/ideological grounds for inflicting the suffering and abuse they caused to their victims.
While in retaliation with their racist point of view, “them and us” point of view, the BNP is distracting people attention from the real extent of child grooming/human trafficking/child abuse and the real issues behind it concentrating on few incidents of child grooming committed by Muslims to present a simplistic racist propaganda against brown skinned and bearded Muslims.

So this is more like a clash of two racist/extremist ideas to me. On both sides they are unrealistic, ignorant and have simplistic approach to issues. Both sides are hollow and I don’t expect them to do anything for the good of the mankind.

And I leave the reader with a question. Perhaps the most popular case of child abuse/grooming during last and this year was the one from Jimmy Saville – if his victims had known about this leaflet – and followed it line by line – how could this protect them from a paedophile predator who was going to receive a knighthood later on in his life? 
Or perhaps Saville’s case isn’t too bad from a BNP perspective because Saville was a white British person?