Islamaphobia Phobia – Why Church, Media and Politicians are Afraid and Spineless

I am sitting in Costas (letting my nerves settle) after having done a live interview with BBC Radio Scotland on my article on ‘Islam, the Elephant in the Room”  and my initial reaction is one of profound sorrow.  Here is why…forgive me if it is a bit emotional.

1) I am fed up of the dumbed down nature and ignorance of British politics and life – I knew that immediately I would be accused of being a bigot, Islamaphobic and I was.  The interviewer accused me of being ‘divisive’ to which I simply pointed out that anyone who expresses an opinion of any kind can be accused of being divisive.    Here are some examples of the responses I have already received “Don’t know if it was your intention, but you came across as an intolerant, ignorant bigot in that interview.”  “You give Christians and bad name if your BBC Scotland interview is indicative of your sect’s attitude to Islam.”

2)  I am depressed about the ignorance and spinelessness of our politicians.  They are so scared of being accused of Islamaphobia and the nature of our public debate is so dumbed down, that I think it will be impossible to have an intelligent debate about this.  Like the man who tweeted the BBC ‘Bet UKIP will be pleased to hear that”.  Thats the way to shut down debate!   When approached by the press only two of the parties made any comment.   The SNP said my comments were “unfortunate and plain wrong”.  I issue here a simple challenge to the SNP – tell me where my comments are wrong and I will publicly retract them and apologise for them.  If you can’t then in effect you are confirming the view that people have about politicians and political parties….you are good at the soundbites but don’t really come up with reason and facts.   The Tories claimed that more people were worried about the economy than Islam.  Well, as that great philosopher/politician Bart Simpson says ‘duh’!  Of course.  That is the point.   The reason I raised the subject was because you are not raising it.  People are being killed all over the world in the name of Islam.  There are enormous problems of radicalisation in England’s cities. There are more British Muslims fighting for ISIS than are in the British army.  Every time we board a flight, go to a major public event, we are inconvenienced because of Islamic terrorism.  Our media cannot publish cartoons of Mohammed without facing death threats.  We have spent billions on fighting Islamic terrorism.  Are the Tories denying that this affects our economy?  There is a real pressure on freedom of religion in the UK – muslims who become Christians face severe persecution.   In the UK!   And you keep silent.  Actually you don’t.  You blame all religions because you buy into the narrative that they are all basically the same.    And so in order to keep Islamic extremists out of schools you propose to keep ordinary Christians out as well!

3) I am depressed because of Islamaphobia and the thinly veiled racism that lies behind it.  Because normal mainstream politicians are too scared to speak about this, the field has been left open for the far right racists.  In saying what I said above I am not saying that all Muslims are terrorists or support terrorism.  That would be foolish and completely wrong.  But I despair that the spinelessness of our politicians, the hatred of militant atheists for all religions (and therefore lumping Christianity together with Islam), and the ignorance of Islam being a political theology – means that Islamaphobia and the political power of Islam will feed off one another, and both will grow together.

4) I am depressed at the spinelessness of the Church – The Church of Scotland and the Catholic church issued wet politically correct statements which were implicitly critical of me and again identified me as some kind of bigot.   Ironically I have had more support from the Scottish Secular Society than I have from the Church!

To be honest I feel kind of alone.  And I am fed up taking the bullets.   Why should I be branded a bigot for speaking the truth?

So let me issue the following challenges:

1) To the SNP – Tell me where I am wrong and why what I said was unfortunate. If you want me to vote for you (as I have often done) I would appreciate an answer.

2) To the Tories, Labour and Lib Dems – Can you speak about this issue at all?  Or are you just going to enact anti-religious policies for all (in order to be ‘fair’) rather than deal with the elephant in the room.

3) To my Muslim brothers and sisters – Do you deny that Islam is a political as well as a religious ideology?  Do you want Islamic law to be enforced in a Muslim Britain?  Can you name one Islamic country where there is religious freedom – in particular the freedom to change your religion?  Will you allow Muslims in the UK to change their religion if they wish?

4) To the Church – Are you prophets and proclaimers of the Gospel of Christ or just compromisers with the spirit of this world?  Will you love, serve , welcome and help Muslims – most of all by living, loving and telling the Good News of Jesus.  Are you prepared to take time to engage, dialogue and pray with and for Muslims?  And can I plead with my fellow Christians – please don’t be Islamaphobic!  We have nothing to be phobic about!  And if you agree with my view of the threat of Islam please don’t give any credence to right (or left) wing political groups (like the EDL or BNP) who will seek to exploit your frustration.  They are evil and must be avoided like the plague.

5) To the Media and the ‘Gatekeepers’ of our Culture.  Are any of you prepared to have this discussion and dialogue?  Or are you just going to hand over the whole debate to the real bigots, by pretending the issue does not exist and labelling those of us who dare raise it, as bigots.

Will I hold my breath?  I’m off to prepare a sermon on Isaiah….amazing how relevant this prophet is to our current situation!

You can read the original article here – http://www.christiantoday.com/article/three.reasons.politicians.cant.cope.with.islam/51513.htm

And the interview and response on Premier here – http://www.premier.org.uk/News/UK/Islam-is-election-elephant-in-the-room-says-Church-leader

For BBC Radio Scotland interview – http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b05pbhyv

Here is the report in The Daily Express and The Press and Journal 

Free Church minister sounds alarm over rise of Islam
Daily Express 8 Apr 2015

“SPINELESS” politicians are ignoring the rise of Islam in the UK, according to a prominent church minister.

And the Reverend David Robertson, who will soon take over as Moderator of the Free Church of Scotland, also says there is no such thing as “secular Islam”.

His comments come as debate rages throughout Britain as to how to tackle the issue of radical proponents of the religion without alienating minority communities.

But the minister stressed that although he opposes “racist, jingoistic Islamophobia, the fear of Islamophobia is blinding many of our politicians to the threat we face from Islam”.

Mr Robertson has accused politicians of leading the country down a “path of destruction away from the Christian foundations of our nation” by appeasing Muslims.

Writing on the Christian Today website, he said that politicians are either ignorant of the nature of Islam, or frightened of being labelled racist for speaking out about it. He said: “Christianity is the bedrock and foundation of our secular society. Islam is different. Islam has no doctrine of separation of the spiritual from the political. Islam is, and has always been, a political movement.

“There can be no such thing as secular Islam.

“The narrative is that Islam is the same as Christianity, that ISIS and others are just fundamentalists who are not really part of the ‘religion of peace’ and that Christians have their own ISIS equivalents. All untrue.

“However, the main point is that mainstream Islam does not and cannot fit in with the worldview and doctrines of our liberal secularists. And because our politicians do not see that, they cannot deal with it.”

 Mr Robertson warned that Britain is in danger of being outflanked by a growing Islamic population, who could wield great power within 20 years.

 Mr Robertson added: “It’s the organisation, social cohesion, wealth and internal discipline that brings the political power; if you want it. And Islam does. A survey released this week shows that in the UK as a whole Islam will be 11 per cent of the population within a couple of decades.

“Our secularists cannot cope with that.”

Mr Robertson, minister of Dundee St Peter’s Free Church and director of the Solas Centre for Public Christianity, will become moderator of the Free Church next month.

A spokesman for the Muslim Council of Scotland yesterday declined to comment.

Islam is ‘election elephant in room’

The Press and Journal 8 Apr 2015

A leading churchman has clashed with the SNP and Conservatives after he claimed addressing concerns over Islam was more important than dealing with the economy, independence and the NHS.

The Rev David Robertson, the next moderator of the Free Church of Scotland, claimed most politicians were either “blind or too cowardly” to tackle what he called the election elephant in the room.

He said the fear of being associated with racism meant that most politicians were reluctant to discuss the fact that Islamic political theology presented a real danger to freedom.

Aspokesmanfor theSNP said Mr Robertson’s comments were “unfortunate and plain wrong”.

The Tories claimed most people were more worried about the economy than Islam.

Mr Robertson, 52, leads St Peter’s Church in Dundee.

 

22 thoughts on “Islamaphobia Phobia – Why Church, Media and Politicians are Afraid and Spineless

  1. Hi David Listened to you this morning. In our prayer meeting in Stirling last night we were praying for you. Keep on! Best regards Clive

    Sent from my iPad

    >

  2. Are Christians prophets and proclaimers of the Gospel of Christ or just compromisers with the spirit of this world?…….In my neck of the woods, the body of born again believers have sold out. They have long since abandoned the public square and evangelism is a ‘no go’ area.

    David, you are 100% right; Islam is the ‘elephant in the room’, and sadly those who are commissioned to confront such issues have run away from the fight. The pathetic ‘navel gazing’ of Scotland’s evangelicals rather than standing for Christ to proclaim the truth is leading our society to disaster.

    Many thanks for having the courage to stand for Christ David……….shame on these Christian leaders, national and local (Pastors, Elders & Deacons) who flaunt their office but run away from their responsibilities.

  3. Dear David,
    Thank you for standing for the truth and facing the predictable yet extremely disappointing reaction of small minded people who can’t see or understand truth when it is staring them in the face. Thank you for being so transparent about the way you feel after that interview. May you be blessed and energised as you prepare that sermon from Isaiah. May the Holy One of Israel continue to be your Strength and your Shield.

  4. Thanks for quoting, in the above blog post, the Twitter comments I made to you this morning.
    It’s a pity that you saw fit to leave out the others, like you accusing me of prejudice.
    I asked on Twitter why you think this is the case; answer came there none!
    So I’ll give you another opportunity: what makes my comments prejudiced? To whom am I demonstrating prejudice?

    1. CJ – Yes I am happy to answer why you are prejudiced. Because you accused me of being an intolerant loveless bigot and yet when I asked you to tell me one thing I said that was wrong. You kept totally silent. So I ask again – could you let me know one thing I said that was wrong?

  5. “If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me first. If you belonged to the world it would love you as its own.” John 15,18

    I know you say you feel alone, but you are not – there are many who share your heart and passion for Christ and for the gospel. But you are in the “public square” and most of us are not. No one will be asking me for my opinion so I will get off lightly. I really wish it was otherwise! I would love to be able to test out the reality of Matthew 5,11.

  6. loveless? Where? You’re making things up. Guess that is your modus operandi.

    Arguing logically with a religious zealot is like punching smoke, so I’m not going to bother. All I’ll say is that, as a person of faith myself, I would never dream of being so hypocritical as to castigate an entire religion based on a skewed perception. It’s incredibly insulting to those adherents of that belief that you suggest they cannot develop the way Christians have done down the millenia.

    Salaam, Pax, Peace…

  7. Thank you for taking a stand David. You might feel alone, etc. but Christ is still with you as He promised in Mt. 28.

  8. David, I am sorry to read of how you are feeling, depressed, alone and taking bullets. A thought comes to my mind of the apostle Paul being hard pressed.

    The theme of your post appears to be an appeal to all to stop being spineless and speak up for truth as you perceive things to be.

    I identify with the group you talk of with being prophets and speaking for the gospel. Of course you will realise that while speaking up for truth it is alway incumbent to be doing so with grace and with being at peace with all whenever possible. A difficult task when emotions are running high as you share.

    I’ve been called A Christian troll, a woolly liberal, a supporter of a heretic, someone being nice in the way Satan disguises himself as an angel of ligh. At other times being obviously conservative honourably honest an important voice and someone who brings great blessing to society as a whole. If I took everything anyone says about me to heart, I would fluctuate between having an impossible ego and being severely depressed with everything in between, being unstable in all things.

    I think what you raise are important points, however there is the imperative to be obedient to Jesus. One of his instructions to disciples being to let you peace rest on those who are deserving, and if you are not welcomed or listened to, to shake the dust off your sandals.

    We have precious little resources and time. One thing I have learned is yes we capture every thought and make it obedient to Christ in the context of demolishing arguments and pretenses that set themselves up agaist knowledge of God. However not all battles can be fought and there is a time to conserve energy for battles tha can be won, not wasting it in silly arguments.

  9. God honours those who honour him, and you have honoured him in this witness, be assured of that. David, I have been saying exactly the same things for some time now, within my own spheres of influence, but too many Christians are keeping their heads down or, even worse, have capitulated to the politically correct brigade that exists even with the professing body of Christ

  10. God Bless you Mr Robertson. You always get the most flak when you’re right over the target. There are lots of people who agree with you. The media bubble gives a false impression of what people actually think. Our political masters can’t think out of a politically correct script.

  11. David, I think you might have been refreshed not only by a Costa Coffee but also by your study of Isaiah once you got back. Is 43:1-5 springs to mind. As with so many things today, you have touched a raw nerve, which is why politicians and so called church leaders wont go near it and quickly distance themselves. It’s another ‘no-go’ area for them along with the NHS, uncontrolled immigration and so on. Keep on speaking truth in love as you have been gifted to do because as with most of these ‘no go’ areas the pigeons will come home to roost eventually, as they have in Rochdale and other places where the dogma of multiculturalism gagged people who should have spoken out. I do think you might have a bit of a ‘blind spot’ when it comes to the SNP, who seem to be excelling themselves in espousing secular, liberal, socialist policies and now want to team up with Milliband in some sort of anti-austerity alliance to spend, spend us towards financial ruin, which will only hurt the poor and vulnerable in the end. Didn’t you say the other day that for every £1 the Government gets in, they still spend around £1.25. When that happens to me, I generally decide to tighten my belt pretty quickly!

    1. Claire…I tried to read your response but to be honest I found it confused and contradictory and hardly the ‘Voice of Reason’ that you claim. But thank you for posting….it is an interesting insight into the UKIP mindset – assuming of course that it is not a spoof!

  12. Hi David.

    I think you are right about the UK’s dysfunctional approach towards Islam. The reason you will not find a sympathetic response to your arguments from the ‘progressives’ is because it has been through their policies and actions that the intellectual capacity to engage with Islam has become all-but leached out of our culture. Secularism has effectively deprived us of the intellectual tools that Churchill took for granted.

    And, I can sympathise with your sense of isolation on these things. There is a sense in which secularism is making advances across our culture because we are not coordinated, because there is no strong rebuttal, where the Christian community is fragmented and cowed. Secularism is not winning because it has good arguments, just a lot of clout and very little reluctance about its recourse to brutality.

    Not sure of the answer. You’ve probably got a better idea than me! In the meantime, we’re praying for you.

  13. Dear David,
    An excellent article once again.
    I was sorry on the one hand to read of your discouragement but on the other hand heartened to know that you continue to fight “the good fight”. Our day and our times need the likes of you. In Paul’s letters to Timothy we see the care and love Paul had for Timothy throughout his two letters. Paul’s words to Timothy are the same for you today dear brother as they were to Timothy in his day. He writes there in his 2nd Epistle Chapter 2 “You then my child, be strengthened by the grace that is in Christ Jesus” As he draws his letter to a close, he exhorts Timothy to “preach the word, be ready in season and out of season; rebuke, exhort,with complete patience and teaching”. 2 Timothy 4:2. He goes on to give the reasons why Timothy should do this, among which are, ” For the time will come when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions and will turn away from listening to the truth and wonder off into myths.” 2 Timothy 4:3,4.
    When we look at the church we are discouraged. When we look at those leading us in politics we are discouraged. When we look at ourselves we are more than discouraged. But, when we look at our Saviour, “the blessed and only Sovereign, the King of Kings and Lord of lords” we find the greatest of encouragements!
    Keep up the good work David! Be like another David and encourage yourself in the Lord your God.

  14. Thank you for standing up for the truth! I am saddened by how the west has so much split up into the politically correct, or the far right nationalists, and people seem to not understand that there is a third option. When they meet those who disagree with them, rather than having intelligent conversation, they turn to calling names. Anyways, I am praying for you!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *