Monday, May 16

Operation Muslim Vote

This was on Channel Four today - a programme following the actions of MPACUK in the lead up and during the election. In a nutshell, they are a "Muslim" lobby group who claim to be responsible for taking Rochdale from Labour and handing it to the Lib Dems. Although they claim to be about the political activation Muslims, the programme seemed to make them more of an anti-Labour group (not that that specifically negates their claim, especially in the current political landscape).

Now bearing in mind that this was on the television and so liable to the same issues that most media is, the most impressive point the programme made to me was how single and closed minded some Muslims around the UK are. The behavior of the MPACUK left a lot to be desired, but that of the people they were trying to get through to was an eye opener.

Despite my typical London smugness I was surprised at how set in their ways the Muslims featured on the programme were. From the outside, Jack Straw losing his constituency was a no brainer, yet for some reason it didn't happen. The Lancs Council of Mosques being chaired by a member of the Labour party was astonishing. The violence the MPACUK faced on the doorsteps of the Blackburn mosques was just disgusting. The whole thing appeared to resemble an Italian Mafia or mob with its organisation and various fronts more than a local ummah. This isn't just my latent London smugness spilling out again; the same elements can be found all over the UK - you can draw parallels between the Lancs Council of Mosques and the MCB for example, and let's not forget that Tony is still in power.

The MPACUK can also be criticised but I'm too tired (and this isn't really what this blog is about). The programme as a whole was a good indication of what is wrong with some Muslims in the UK, but there were also elements in it (the fact that it was made at all, for one and the hijabi who stuck her neck out for another) that gives me hope for a future change for the better in our mindsets.