On 5th February 2015, Marine Le Pen gave a speech to Oxford University’s debating chamber, the Oxford Union, on the matter of ‘Islamic ideology being to blame for Western Society’s ills’. Outside there were more than two-hundred protestors (see picture below) according to the BBC, many of these from ‘United Against Fascism’ (UAF) who use the distinctly fascist tactic of trying to censor their opponents, rather than attempting to defeat their opponents’ arguments in debate. These ‘anti-fascists’ fit into the category of Regressive Left, a term attributed to Maajid Nawaz, who is attempting to secularise Islam so that it can be compatible with Western Society. He would have been a good opponent in the debating chamber to Marine Le Pen, had he been invited.
The first political demonstration that I ever saw was back in 1980 or thereabouts, in Oxford. Some Iranian students had set themselves up at the corner of Queen Street and St Ebbe’s with a banner entitled ‘Transition of a Dictator’, showing cartoon illustrations of the Shah gradually changing into Ayatollah Khomeini. It was a piece of satire which would certainly have cost them their lives back in Iran. Although the term ‘Regressive Left’ didn’t exist back then the common tactic for people of that ilk was to try and ‘No Platform …’ those who disagreed with them. Also, at the time, because Islamic fundamentalists in Afghanistan were being financed by the USA to fight a proxy war against the Soviet Union, no-one on the political left allied themselves with Islam or tried to defend Islam.
Those protesting against Marine Le Pen were guilty of cognitive dissonance, trying to censor someone who was speaking against Islam, rather than challenging her views as to which aspects of Islam merit criticism; particularly where this relates to men who have been brought up in an Islamic culture and their attitudes towards women and girls from outside that culture. One would think that so-called ‘anti-fascists’ would realise this, but to date they have remained silent about the ‘grooming’ gangs, Oxford having one of the worst of them, as exposed by the Operation Bullfinch investigation which I detailed in a previous blog post. If these protestors had an ounce of intelligence between them, they would realise firstly that censorship campaigns usually backfire; and secondly that Marine Le Pen’s family-oriented conservative views (and even more so those of her niece Marion, who is now an Alt-Right pin-up) may well appeal to Muslims, who dislike the ‘decadence’ of living in a secular society. This is an electoral inconsistency that Marine Le Pen has and which the Regressive Left are simply too stupid to exploit.
For any native or former resident of Oxford reading this, the Iranian students had their banner under the covered area where Don Miller’s Hot Bread Kitchen was located at the back. Their banner was opposite where the buses went along Queen Street and therefore visible to a lot of people.
There are other issues with regard to Marine Le Pen’s election campaign, re globalisation and French protectionism, which I may well deal with in a future blog post.
Since I first drafted this post, the Oxford Mail has reported that, there have not surprisingly been anti-Trump protests in Oxford, though they hardly represent the city’s population as a whole. The protestors have remained quiet about this issue though, as always.