Tuesday, 8 January 2008

The Bishop and the Wordmonger

The Bishop of Rochester is a “vicious bulldog” who has used “unholy tactics”, the effect of which has been “to suffuse toxic fear through the land” — or so says Yasmin Alibhai-Brown, foreigner to understatement and perennial foe of moderate language. “Whatever his psychological flaws”, says she, “his latest rant in a right-wing newspaper cannot and should not be forgiven.” [1] His great offence: — to speak of no-go areas “where adherence to [Islamic] ideology has become a mark of acceptability” and where “[t]hose of a different faith or race may find it difficult to live or work” [2], a state of affairs to which Ms Alibhai-Brown herself as much as admits: “There are indeed some localities where Wahabi Islam has taken a hold and imposed cultural separatism between those believers and the rest”. [3] Perhaps then the offence is that the bishop took to speaking of this matter without the leave or consultation of mediators such as Ms Alibhai-Brown, professionals who might always be trusted to find the right words.
[1] Yasmin Alibhai-Brown, “No-go areas that are all in the bishop's mind”, The Independent, 7th January 2007.
[2] Michael Nazir-Ali, Bishop of Rochester, “Extremism flourished as UK lost Christianity”, The Telegraph, 7th January 2008.
[3] Alibhai-Brown, op. cit.


Anonymous said...

Ah, the great Yazzmonster speaks. She is so useful, don't you find? Whenever you are unsure of your position on any given subject you can be sure that the correct one to take and the correct way to express it is the opposite of hers.

Anonymous said...

She is a sort of Own-Brand Polly Toynbee. Cheaper, not as well known, and her arguments don't stretch as far or cover as many areas, but she makes a useful, if less than perfect, substitute.

Deogolwulf said...

Or spam to Toynbee's baloney.

I wonder if she is capable of sobriety.

Jon said...

Don't forget Madeleine Bunting.

All they need is a blasted heath.

James Higham said...

Beautifully put, as always.