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The Labour Government is making a move to shift its focus onto fighting class discrimination in the UK.

What exactly does this mean? At the core of this new initiative, outlined in a new white paper, sits a noble aim, which is for “every individual to realise their potential, no matter what their background”. And that is a very good ideal to aspire to, don’t get me wrong. Equal opportunities matter at all ages, but especially for younger people still in education whose personalities and perceptions are still being shaped. People who are worse-off don’t always achieve (from the education or career point of view) as much as people from more affluent backgrounds, with notable exceptions of course, so the society as a whole is missing out if talent goes unnoticed or undeveloped.   Read the rest of this entry »

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Fantastic! A local council in Birmingham has found a fantastic way to better integrate Muslims into the UK society. Amongst other projects, they chose to allocate government money towards printing dozens of slogan T-shirts with “I love Islam” on them.

The money was made available by the governement to generally help improve Muslim integration and was allocated to various local councils that later chose schemes of their own to invest it in.

What an inspired solution. Surely T-shirts will put everyone’s minds at ease immediately, stop all the worries about UK’s tolerance towards Muslims, and make all Muslims feel right at home. And possibly also somehow resolve any threats of global terrorism.

T-shirt modelling: A bit unclear as to who the intended fashion models of these would be? Council heads perhaps – to demonstrate their full committment to resolving inter-cultural problems?

How about this though. At the root of the current increased tension between UK cultures lie religious tensions aggravated by the fact that UK invaded Iraq following US’s lead.

Surely the solution would be for UK to stop meddling in the Middle East, something Britain has been doing for decades, and withdraw from Iraq and Afganistan? Ah, yes, I keep forgetting that the US-UK invasion has caused a fine mess there so leaving now is not really an option. Hmm. Not an easy one is it folks?

How about this then: Acknowledge that religious intolerance is the critical contributor to the world’s conflicts, and work to solve that – not waste money on T-shirts. Which means: (A) educate kids in a more liberal way, don’t let them be indoctrinated into religion from an early age when they are most susceptible, and let them decide for themselves whether they want to have faith or be atheist; and (B) look into the reasons why fundamentalism is taking a stronger hold in communities at this stage, and work on the root causes.

The current policy of giving money to random hare-brain schemes to promote “better intercultural integration” just feels like a random knee-jerk reaction and shows the British government, and the local authorities, have not got the finger on the pulse. Tell me something I did not know before…

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