fredag den 24. april 2009

En beretning fra et fanatisk multikultursamfund

Jeg var egentlig ved at læse en bog om EU, men så kom den kyndige og velskrivende Engelske psykiaters, Theodore Dalrymple (Pseudonym), bog, "Our culture, what´s left of it, the mandarins and the masses". Siden den kom har jeg af uransagelige årsager haft svært ved at lægge mig til at sove om natten.

Endnu et glimrende essay fra bogen, "The man who predicted the raceriots", at læse denne her herre kan simpelthen ikke anbefales nok! Jeg startede i ung alder med essaygenren, ved at læse klassikeren, over alle klassikere er jeg tilbøjelig til at mene, selv om andre angiveligt vil pege på andre, men jeg valgte Francis Bacons essays.

Jeg vil ikke sige, jeg er updated med hensyn til moderne essaykunst, men Dalrymples er under alle omstændigheder glimrende skrevet, og berører emner som kultur og ondskab, med en dybde og indsigt som er sjælden.

Om dette essay kan der siges, at det handler om England i 1984, hvor et hysteri spredte sig omkring om engelsk skoleforstander, som påpegede at den nuværende politik på det multikulturelle, ledte til manglende assimilation, segregering og ville eventuelt lede til raceuroligheder, hvilket han jo fik ret i, og det er kun begyndelsen.
Hvad Ray Honeyford anbefalede, var at man sætte læring og engelsk i centrum, spredte immigrant elever så de ikke dannede parallelsamfund.
Det ramaskrig som spredte sig var at uden sidestykke, det røg i medierne med orkanstyrke og demonstrationer blev en del af hverdagen uden for skolen. Dødstrusler væltede ind, som var så alvorlige at Honeyford fik tildelt politibeskyttelse. Ydermere blev han tilbudt $ 30.000, for at love at ikke skrive i en årrække, da man jo ikke kunne få lov til at fyre ham, eller få ham dømt i retten.
Honeyford var slet ikke nogen ond racist, han kom selv fra en fattig baggrund og vidste personligt hvad god dannelse betød, at man fik muligheden for læring uden skelnen til baggrund.

Altså en surrealistisk historie fra et fanatisk multikulturelt samfund, skrevet med skarphed og vid, læs den endelig helt, men her følger uddrag:

One man was not at all surprised at this outbreak of inchoate racial fury. He was Ray Honeyford, the headmaster of a middle school in an immigrant area of Bradford in the early 1980s. He knew that the official multiculturalist educational policies that he was expected to implement would sooner or later lead to social disaster such as these riots: and when he repeatedly exposed the folly of these policies in print, the advocates of “diversity”—who maintain that all cultures are equal but that opinions other than their own are forbidden—mounted a vicious and vituperative campaign against him. For at least two years, the Honeyford Affair, as it was known, was a national preoccupation, calling forth endless newspaper and broadcast commentary, the man himself often branded a near-murderous racist and ultimately drummed out of his job. Hell, it seems, hath no fury like a multiculturalist contradicted...

Honeyford’s fundamental ideas were as logical, sensible, and coherent as they were unfashionable. He argued that the 20 percent of Bradford’s population who were Islamic immigrants were in Britain to stay, with no intention of returning home; and that both for their own sake and for Britain’s, they needed to be integrated fully into British society. The children of immigrants needed to feel that they were truly British, if they were to participate fully in the nation’s life; and they could acquire a British identity only if their education stressed the primacy of the English language, along with British culture, history, and traditions.

Honeyford did not believe that the cultural identity necessary to prevent the balkanization of our cities into warring ethnic and religious factions implied a deadening cultural or religious uniformity. On the contrary, he used the example of the Jews (who emigrated to Britain, including to Bradford and nearby Manchester, in substantial numbers at the end of the nineteenth century) as an example of what he meant. Within a generation of arrival, Jews succeeded, despite the initial prejudice against them, in making a hugely disproportionate contribution to the upper reaches of national life as academics, cabinet ministers, entrepreneurs, doctors and lawyers, writers and artists. The upkeep of their own traditions was entirely their own affair, and they relied not at all on official patronage or the doctrines of multiculturalism. This was Honeyford’s ideal, and he saw no reason why the formula should not work again, given a chance...

In his article, Honeyford enumerated some of multiculturalism’s problems and contradictions. The debasement of language that multiculturalist and anti-racist bureaucrats have brought about, he argued, has made it extremely difficult to talk honestly or clearly about racial and cultural matters. By lumping together all ethnic minorities as “black” in order to create a false dichotomy between white oppressors on the one hand and all minorities on the other, for example, these bureaucrats could obscure such complex and unpleasant realities as the continued hostility between Sikhs and Muslims, or the Muslim ill-treatment of women. Only by means of such deliberate blindness can the tenets of multiculturalism, feminism, and universal human rights be reconciled. Honeyford quoted Orwell to the effect that politicized language “is designed to make lies sound truthful” and “to give an impression of solidity to pure wind.”

He held up a very concrete example of how the multiculturalist mindset was damaging education. Immigrant parents, he observed, frequently sent their children back to Pakistan and Bangladesh for months or even years at a time, often precisely to keep them from acquiring any British cultural characteristics. Though this practice had obvious social and educational disadvantages for people destined to spend their adult lives in Britain—and though it was entirely illegal, as well—the authorities turned a blind eye to it.

British law obliges a parent, once his child is registered at a school, to ensure that he attends regularly; any white parent who kept his child away for so long would undoubtedly be prosecuted and punished. In the case of the children of immigrants, however, school authorities never pressed charges but instead directed teachers to keep absentees’ places open indefinitely and to regard their absence as a culturally, and therefore educationally, enriching experience. As Honeyford summed up: “I am left with the ethically indefensible task of complying with a school attendance policy which is determined not, as the law requires, on the basis of individual parental responsibility, but by the parent’s country of origin—a blatant and officially sanctioned policy of racial discrimination.” Seventeen years after he described the problem, it remains unsolved...

Finally, and even less forgivably, Honeyford made mention of the plight of another ethnic minority in his school: the white children, who, when the article appeared, made up a mere 5 percent of the pupils. Their education suffered in a school dominated by pupils from non-English-speaking homes, he said, and he suggested that officials disregarded their plight because their parents, ill-educated and inarticulate, had formed no pressure group, and no political capital could be made of them. (Once, in the 1960s, the city council had tried to disperse the children of non-English-speaking immigrants to schools throughout the city, precisely to prevent the development of ghetto schools such as Drummond, but race-relations experts and bureaucrats declared this practice to be discriminatory and therefore stopped it—to Honeyford’s regret.)...

(I repeat: he had proposed only that Muslim children should be fully integrated into British society—the very opposite of suggesting that they should be discriminated against or in any way maltreated.) For months, he had to enter his own school under police protection from the small but militant group of pickets that formed outside and grew in size and volume whenever a television camera appeared. A few small children, too young to understand what was at issue, learned from their parents to chant “Ray-cist! Ray-cist!” at him and to hold up denunciatory placards, some with a skull and crossbones above his name. The Bradford Education Authority considered the possibility of a court order against the demonstrators, since children who continued to attend the school were likewise insulted as stooges and sell-outs, but it decided that such an order would only inflame passions further. Thus political extremists learned a valuable lesson: intimidation pays...

The affair took its toll on him: after all, he was not a career politician but merely a schoolmaster who had spoken out against what he thought was wrong. His health, and his wife’s, began to suffer; and when his employer arranged to meet him secretly and offered him $30,000 in cash to agree to publish no further articles for three years, he was tempted to accept. His wife dissuaded him, however, telling him that he would never be able to live with himself if he concluded so sordid a deal...

The campaign against Honeyford disregarded entirely the fact that no complaint had ever been received about his competence as a teacher, or the fact that there were always far more applications to his school (mainly by Muslim parents) than there were places. Several attempts by political zealots on the city council to have him dismissed failed for lack of legal cause. Eventually, however, he accepted early retirement: constant abuse, however unjustified, is wearing—and he wanted to spare his pupils, who, like him, had to enter the school through a daily gauntlet of 40 vituperative pickets. Although teaching was his vocation, Honeyford never returned to it. Instead, he wrote several books about race relations and education, and became a freelance journalist...

But it is impossible to meet Honeyford for long without realizing that he is a passionate believer in the redemptive power of education and in the duty of schools to give the children of immigrants the same educational opportunities as everyone else. His only regret about the affair was that it drastically shortened his teaching career. It is a tribute to the power of Orwellian language that a man who believes these things should successfully have been labeled a racist...

The scene is set for a battle of competing resentments. If we had only listened to Ray Honeyford, we should not have sown what we are now reaping and what we (and others) shall reap for many years to come.


Essayet i fuld længde:

2 kommentarer:

pinstripe sagde ...

Bare lige en lille kommentar til en sproglig fejl.
Du har skrevet:
"Siden den kom har jeg af uransagelige årsager haft svært ved at ligge mig til at sove om natten".
Nej, man ligger sig ikke til at sove om natten. Man lægger sig til at sove om natten. Og når man har lagt sig, så ligger man. ;)

Thomas Bolding Hansen sagde ...

ups, har et par indbyggede standardfejl, som jeg har svært ved at slippe af med.