Predictable shrieking about the growth of Sharia-compliant financial products in this country. But while Sharia law must have no legal status here, there would be no need for any of this if we had not lost sight of our own tradition of opposition to usury. Indeed, there would no need for rather a lot of things at the moment. Meanwhile, San Francisco's ballot proposition to outlaw male genital mutilation has allowed certain people to vent their spleens about Sodom on the Bay. But there is nothing any more acceptable about male than about female genital mutilation. The True West is being shamed by Islamic expansion on one issue and by the pederast-based homosexualist political movement on another. We must not be so on any more.
It is scientifically baseless and historically illiterate to define homosexuality as an individual and collective identity economically, socially, culturally or politically. The true character of the movement that so defines may be discerned from an examination of its origins. From Queer As Folk through Shameless (which in a recent series featured incest between teenage half-brothers as a gigantic joke) to Clapham Junction, sex between men and teenage boys is glorified. We treat as a national treasure Peter Tatchell, a militant campaigner for the age of consent to be lowered to 14, which, had it been in force, would have legalised well over ninety per cent of the offences committed by Catholic priests, the only men who now run the slightest realistic risk of being prosecuted for sex with teenage boys.
But Tatchell, whom David Cameron offered a peerage last year, is merely a faithful representative of the movement that originated out of the Stonewall Riots and into the early 1970s, and which originated the idea, which has no prior history whatever and remains unknown in great swathes of the world, that persons, rather than simply acts, are homosexual, and that a predilection for such acts constitutes an identity comparable to class, ethnicity or even sex (which is written into every cell of the body). That was and is a movement of, by, for and about those who sexually abuse teenage boys. It began several years after our own humane and necessary decriminalisation of male homosexual acts between consenting adults in private. Many of its pioneering figures abused teenage boys to their dying days, and the rest still do so to this very day. Every time that you see one of those rainbow flags, or anything like that, then remember that that is what it represents.
Meanwhile, face-covering – not head-covering, but face-covering – is incompatible with the conduct of Western social and cultural life. Halal meat is one thing: if the ancient indigenous Christians of the Middle East eat it (do they?), then there cannot be anything wrong with in principle; and it certainly bears comparison with many of our our food production practices. But animal sacrifice is totally unacceptable. So is polygamy. There should not be Muslim schools here, where my own Catholic schools have existed since a good thousand years before any other kind did. The public holidays in this country should be Christian festivals rather than pointless celebrations of the mere fact that the banks are on holiday; there is no case for non-Christian festivals to be public holidays in the West.
And mosques in the West must not have domes and minarets, which are triumphalistic manifestations of an Islamised society, culture and polity, and which were in that spirit added to former churches during Islam’s forcible overrunning of the Eastern Roman Empire. How long before our cathedrals, churches and chapels go the same way? It happened in Asia Minor, Mesopotamia, the Levant and North Africa, all once integral parts of Christendom.
We need to return to our own traditions, and not to those constructed explicitly in order to subvert and supplant them, on issues of sexual identity, affective friendship, intergenerational intimacy, the single state, and so forth. We need to re-learn our own patterns of structured daily prayer, setting aside one day in seven, fasting, almsgiving, pilgrimage, the global community of faith as the primary focus of personal allegiance and locus of personal identity, the lesser outward and greater inward struggle, the need for a comprehensive and coherent critique of both capitalism and Marxism, the coherence between faith and reason, and a consequent integrated view of art and science. The answer to the challenge of the Sunna is Sacred Tradition. The answer to the challenge of the Imamate is the Petrine Office. The answer to the challenge of Sufism is our own tradition of mysticism and monasticism. Liberal Catholics will be the last to see the point.