Saturday, 18 August, 2018

Why Boris Johnson's Muslim Comments Are So Dangerous: James O'Brien

Boris Johnson under fire for ‘hate’ burqa comments Theresa May condemns Boris Johnson's burka comments
Charlie Simmons | 11 August, 2018, 16:22

The leader of the Scottish Conservatives, Ruth Davidson, called Johnson's remarks "gratuitously offensive" and said he should apologize.

In a newspaper column, Johnson said women who wear the niqab looked like "letter boxes" and "bank robbers". Yet we have representatives of our governing party who think otherwise and who use Muslim women in order to pander to far-right Islamophobes within the party, as Boris Johnson has done.

Boris Johnson could be investigated for a breach of his party's code of conduct after the Conservatives received dozens of complaints about his recent comments.

If the independent panel finds him culpable, Johnson faces suspension of his membership or expulsion from the party.

Schools and universities should be able to take the same approach if a student "turns up. looking like a bank robber".

Johnson, who quit the government last month in a dispute over Brexit, made the remarks in a Daily Telegraph article published Monday. Such full covering clothing has been already banned in France.

"I'm not a Muslim woman..."

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Tousle-headed Johnson is one of Britain's best-known politicians, a popular but divisive figure known for Latin quips and verbal blunders that have included calling Papua New Guineans cannibals and accusing people in Liverpool of "wallowing" in victimhood. "People do not want a vision of our country thrust down their throat either by me, by Boris or by anybody else".

Furthermore, given the responses from other MPs, specifically Ms Dorries, and the broader concerns that have been raised by the Muslim Council of Britain amongst others, we believe that there must now be an independent inquiry into Islamophobia in the Party to tackle this issue once and for all.

Conservative peer Sayeeda Warsi, a former party chairwoman, accused Johnson of adopting the "dog-whistle" tactics of right-wing firebrand Steve Bannon, US President Donald Trump's former top aide.

"We work closely with Police Scotland to prevent incidents such as the ones mentioned".

There is a growing sense that "a confrontation is being forced between those in the party who think the way Johnson described women who wear a niqab was out of order and those who think it was fair comment", says The Times.

Sources close to Johnson said earlier this week that calls for him to apologise for the comments were "ridiculous". "We have to call it out".

Johnson has so far refused requests to apologise for the comments.

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