When Javaria Saaed, a member of the counterterrorism division at Scotland Yard, reported extremist behavior and comments from fellow Muslim officers, she expected her concerns to be taken seriously. Several Muslims in the London police force were expressing views consistent with extremist interpretations of Islam, something she assumed would interest her superiors. But she was wrong. She hadn’t counted on the double standard applied to Muslims in the West, or government officials’ intense fear of being labeled Islamaphobic.
According to Saeed, herself a practicing Muslim, a Muslim constable told her that female genital mutilation—a sickening practice that has been outlawed in Britain since 1985—ought to be legal. Another said women should report domestic violence to sharia courts instead of police (except in cases of extreme violence). Yet another Muslim officer said that what Pakistan needs is a “strict religious solution… like the Taliban” to resolve its security problems.
Political Correctness Creates Massive Injustices
Naturally concerned about these radical comments from law enforcement officials, Saeed reported them to her superiors. They told her she shouldn’t pursue any complaints about the beliefs or comments of these Muslim officers because it would hurt her “career progression and tarnish [her] reputation.”
In Saeed’s opinion, her superiors were afraid to punish Muslims in their departments out of fear of being called Islamaphobic or racist. Based on their comments about her career, it seems this fear runs up the chain of command. Eventually, Saeed resigned over what she saw as Scotland Yard’s “political correctness” and the “sickening views and behaviour of some Muslim officers.”
This isn’t the first time Britain has turned a blind eye to actions within the Muslim community for fear of accusations of bigotry. In the English city of Rotherham, city officials, police, and social workers looked the other way for decades while a child sex ring groomed and prostituted more than 1,400 young white girls and women. Why? Because the men running the ring were of Pakistani descent, and no one wanted to be accused of racism for prosecuting them. The horrifying story broke in 2014 and received tremendous attention, but recently it was revealed that the problem persists.
The situation with Scotland Yard, in addition to the Rotherham scandal, points to the double standard applied to Muslims in the West, who get away with behavior that would otherwise be considered offensive or inappropriate—or criminal.
Saeed claims Muslim officers working for London’s Metropolitan Police were often racist toward white officers. But few people take seriously the claim that a minority can be racist against a non-minority. What’s often called “reverse racism” is dismissed as being racist itself. The conversation, it would seem, is closed on this issue. Only whites can be racist. If minorities have negative views of whites, it must be because of their history of oppression.
The Double Standard for Muslims in the West
Saeed also reported that many of her fellow Muslim officers were sexist toward women. They called her a “bad Muslim” because she didn’t wear a head covering, a common practice for Muslim women that’s considered a sign of purity and propriety. She was also told that she was “better off at home looking after [her] husband.”
Compare this to how sensitive we are in the West to even the slightest whiff of sexism in the workplace. We’ve taken the real need to protect women from sexual harassment and turned it into a witch-hunt of sorts, so all a woman has to do is feel uncomfortable, with little producible proof or discrimination, and the man in question is assumed guilty. Yet a Muslim police officer can come out and tell a woman how to dress and that she ought not to be working at all, and face no consequences.
Imagine the outrage if Christians went around telling women they belong at home, not in the workplace. But a Muslim man’s view that a woman should live like a 1940s American housewife, something that today is anathema in the West, is just accepted as part of his culture?
Or take attitudes toward homosexuality. An American baker who won’t design a special-order cake for a gay wedding has his life turned upside down and is painted as the worst kind of bigot. Meanwhile, the mainstream media bends over backwards to avoid talking about homophobia in Islam in the wake of the Orlando shooting in a gay night club, which a Muslim carried out in the name of ISIS.
As Saeed herself pointed out, if a white officer had behaved as her Muslim co-workers had, he would have most definitely been fired. Instead, Scotland Yard gave the officer who made the comment about female genital mutilation “management action,” which usually means some type of training course. It’s no wonder Saeed describes some Muslim officers as feeling like they’re above the law. They essentially are.
Lately there’s been much talk about tensions between Muslims and non-Muslims in Europe and America, especially during the ongoing migrant crisis. Many in the West have decided the solution is to carve out special exceptions for Muslims and treat them with kid gloves.
This is wrong-headed and condescending. The best hope Europe and the United States has for peaceably co-existing with Muslims and inviting them to participate in our society is to hold them to the very same standards to which we hold everyone else. They deserve that much from us.