Murder of anyone cannot be justified
Sir, It was so sad to see the gruesome murder of the British soldier, Lee Rigby, in London. It was so horrible. Such killings can never be justified. Everyone condemned the murder.
The attacks on the mosques and Islamic centres are wrong too. This too cannot be justified.
The horrible murder of Muhammed Saleem was gruesome too. His killing too cannot be justified. He did not harm anyone. He was killed just because he was a Muslim, and for no other reason.
Those who murdered Rigby, Saleem and attacked mosques are a very tiny minority and do not represent their respective communities.
But what I don’t understand is why are the media, politicians blaming the religion of the murderers of Rigby? Why do they bring the word ‘Islam’ in their discourse? What has Islam to do with the murder? They never use the word ‘Christianity’ or faith of those who murder Muslims.
Even the Muslim leaders, almost everyone who gave comments to the media, mentioned the word ‘Islam’ even if denying that faith had anything to do with the murderer(s) of Rigby. Why bring religion into the conversation? That is the problem with Muslim leadership in this country. They want to be accepted by the establishment, however wrong they may be.
What we need is a new leadership which can speak truth to power and not be afraid to be giving a different narrative to what the media, politicians and other faith leaders want.
Injustices in UK judiciary and prisons
Sir, Congratulations on the excellent interview with Justice Secretary, Chris Grayling. However, I disagree with some of his views.
He did not answer the issue on cuts in legal aid which will affect those who cannot afford to pay for lawyers. In addition they will not be allowed to choose who defends them. The rich will be able to afford the lawyers. This is surely case of injustice.
He is also wrong on the case of secret courts. It is true that in secret courts the defendant will not be able to find out what he has been convicted for as the information will be kept a secret to protect the intelligence services even if their accusations may not be true.
I did not realise that there are very few Muslim prison officers considering there is such a high percentage of Muslim prisoners. I am surprised that the prison authorities are not interested in recruiting from the Muslim community to remedy the situation. No wonder then that there are so many instances of discrimination and mistreatment of Muslim prisoners in this country. So much injustice.
Ill-conceived same sex Marriage Bill
Sir, I spoke and voted in the same House of Lords on the second reading of this Bill on June 3/4. I am sorry to say that a motion to stop the Bill was heavily defeated. Had to been carried, it would have allowed for full consultation throughout the country, and for drafting a new bill with better protection for freedom of conscience and expression, and improved status for civil partnerships.
The Bill will now go ahead and become law, even in if the House of Lords manages to secure some improvements in its details. Many have argued that traditional hetero-sexual marriage, with all its benefits for the nurturing of children, will be more at risk than before.
This calls for a united effort by Christians, members of other faiths, and all supporters of traditional marriage. They should show by the quality of their lives that faithful couples contribute to the cohesion of society. They should pass on to their children the sacramental values of life-long hetero-sexual marriage. It can indeed be a path to holiness.
Preparation for marriage, together with support for young or bereaved parents, will be more than ever necessary. Solidarity and mutual encouragement by married couples are likely to grow in importance. It would be wonderful if traditional families would now open their homes to children in need of adoption or long-term fostering. The known shortcomings of statutory child-care show the need for such generosity.
I hope I have indicated some ways in which ill-conceived legislation can still be a spur to positive and inspired behaviour.
House of Lords