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Muslim anti-grooming statement. Too little too late?

June 28, 2013

Members of the Oxford Islamic Grooming Gang, sentenced recently.  Latest in a long line of bestial and violent paedophiles and ephebophiles who are emerging from Britain’s Islamic community

Although the statement against child-sex grooming, to be read out in 500 British Mosques is to be very much welcomed, it is difficult to shake the feeling that this sermon is too little too late.

This sort of statement, distributed nationwide and to mosques catering for all flavours of Islam, Sunni, Shia, Ahmadiya, Ismaili and Sufi, could and should have been made, one, two, ten or fifteen years ago. This is because this Islamic Grooming is not a recent problem but one that has been around for far too many years, and one that was ignored by both the British Islamic communities and scandalously by the agencies of the state.

The text of the sermon, an extract of which can be found at the Hufington Post, seems to be primarily a public relations exercise. This sort of sermon, or Khutba could have been read years or decades ago, but it was not. The Imams should also have told their congregants that in Britain women are to be treated equally, but they did not. They could have told their congregants to consider ‘the law of the land as the law of the Muslim’ and that Shariah had to be de-prioritised, but they did not.

That they, and the rest of the British Islamic religious and political establishment, said nothing or very little about issues of organised child rape and oppression of women, speaks volumes on how much of a priority they gave these issues. Muslims in Britain were quite willing to take to the streets to burn Salman Rusdie’s ‘Satanic Verses’, moan about non-existent massacres in Israel, protest against the Mohammed cartoons and to insult and assault our troops. Where were the mass movements of Muslims showing their disgust at the crimes of their co-religionists? Where were the ‘integrated, peaceful, loyal Islamic moderates’ we hear so much about?

This statement against grooming gangs is a slick damage limitation project, where the target audience for the sermon is not the average ‘man in the ummah’, but journalists and the mainstream commentariat. It would be wise to remember that the Muslim community and their organisations have been forced into this by growing public revulsion at the Islamic Grooming Gang phenomenon.

It would be nice to think of this public statement as a sign of positive Islamic reform, but many people will find it difficult to not have the worry that this sermon is just Taqiyya, or lying to protect Islam.


HuffPo article on the Islamic grooming gang sermon with excerpts from it.

  1. Woman on a Raft permalink

    My difficulty is that this week we have been treated to the spectacle of papers and commentators who should know better acting as if so long as the victim thinks she’s in lurve with the criminal, that must make it legal.

    It does not, but with this level of confusion over what is in fact fairly simple law amongst people who should know better (i.e. respected bloggers) it is hardly surprising that gangs operated for years with impunity.

    The 2003 Act is now a decade old but the Gillick ruling in 1983 created almost twenty years of confusion – so there are 30 years of mess in the general population to clear up which, by the looks of it, is going to take a while.

    I take your point about the context of these grooming gangs but I do not share your optimism about being able to pin it to a particular culture. It seems to me there is a much wider problem, a willingness to tolerate obvious abuse, which comments on the Forrest case and Barbara Hewson’s bone-headed stance demonstrate.

    • Fahrenheit211 permalink

      Good points. There has been a lot of confusion over these issues, with society, and the caring professions appearing to approve or not care about underage sex, provided that both parties are under 16. This attitude doesn’t really send a clear message to people at all. A crime doesn’t become a non crime just because those who committed it are both under 16. You wouldn’t let a burglar or a robber off just because both offender and victim were under 16 would you?

      I don’t think that all grooming is Islam related, far from it, but the more bestial organised end of the crime, does appear to be dominated by the followers of Islam.

      A great part of why the Islamic Grooming Gang phenomenon has caused so much anger is the fact that those agencies such as police and social services, who should have been staunch in their support for prosecution of Islamic Grooming Gangs did nothing for fear of being called ‘racist’. Worse still, in Bradford Joyce Thacker whilst in charge of youth services there, allegedly forbade anyone, on pain of sacking, from mentioning that these Islamic Grooming Gangs existed.

      Online grooming appears to have more non-Muslim perpetrators but on street grooming is much more a Muslim problem.

      I agree that it has been a strange week for these sort of stories in the media with strong condemnation of the Islamic Groomers but lesser condemnation in the Forrest case. Although being familiar with courts from a professional standpoint (former Court reporter who has sat in on loads of paedo cases), I must say that the Forrest case was unusual when compared to other nonce and sexual abuse cases in that there was an element of ‘push’ from the girl it seems. However he should never ever have allowed himself to cross the line like he did. He was the adult, and should have behaved in an adult and responsible way and stepped back. He should have informed his Headteacher that this girl was flirting and had her moved to another teacher or himself move to a different school to get away from her. He is now paying the price for not doing the right thing. As you say the law is very simple in this regard. To sleep with a 15 years old person is illegal but with someone over 16 not illegal, not much difficulty in understanding that is there?

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