Even so-called moderate Muslims are seeking special privileges not provided to members of other religions, special privileges dangerous to the rule of law.
During Senate confirmation hearings for Attorney General John Ashcroft, there were a lot of questions as to how Ashcroft would handle enforcing federal laws protecting women’s access to abortion clinics. Ashcroft had this to say on the matter:
I understand that being attorney general means enforcing laws as they are written, not enforcing my own personal preference. It means advancing the national interest, not advocating my personal interest…
I have been entrusted with public service for more than 25 years. Itâ€™s a responsibility I have honored and a trust that I believe I have kept. During those years I have not thought of myself as a public servant of some of the people, but a keeper of the public trust for all the people. If I become US attorney general, I again commit to enforcing the law, all of the law for all of the people. As a man of faith I take my word and my integrity seriously. So when I swear to uphold the law I will keep my oath, so help me God.
And Ashcroft did uphold the law as written, rather than his own personal preference on the matter.
But apparently, what’s good enough for a “fundamentalist” evangelical Christian isn’t good enough for a “moderate” Muslim.*
PC Alexander Omar Basha – a member of the Metropolitan Police’s Diplomatic Protection Group – refused to be posted [to guard London’s Israeli Embassy] because he objected to Israeli bombings in Lebanon and the resulting civilian casualties of fellow Muslims.
In a move which has caused widespread astonishment at Scotland Yard, senior officers in the DPG agreed that PC Basha should be given an alternative posting.
The officer, who carries a gun, is now thought to be guarding another embassy.
I’m not familiar enough with Metropolitan Police procedure to know if they actually take an oath to uphold the law, but presumably whether it’s an oath, a contract or a code of conduct, there is, as Ashcroft recognized, an obligation of law enforcement officers to follow the law. But, apparently, though Alexander Omar Basha may be a man of faith, he is clearly not a man of integrity.
That this case involved an embassy, only makes the issue more important. Diplomacy is so valued by civilized people that we grant diplomats an immunity that does extend to even the most morally questionable behavior and our police are required to respect that. Respect for embassies is one of the things that seperates civilized countries from rogue nations like Iran. If a fundamentalist evangelical Christian can be expected to protect women seeking an abortion, a law which is in no way an established mark of civilization, it is not too much to ask moderate Muslim’s to protect embassies. Had Basha refused to guard a pig farm or a brewery, it might be marginally acceptable; refusing to guard an embassy is beyond the pale.
According to Ex-Met Flying Squad commander John O’Connor:
“This is the beginning of the end for British policing.
“If they can allow this, surely they’ll have to accept a Jewish officer not wanting to work at an Islamic national embassy? Will Catholic cops be let off working at Protestant churches? Where will it end? This decision is going to allow officers to act in a discriminating and racist way.
“When you join the police, you do so to provide a service to the public. If you cannot perform those duties, you leave.
- I assume Alexander Omar Basha is a “moderate” Muslim, as I give the British government credit for enough sense not to give a badge and a gun to a jihadist.