The hate that dare not speak its name
Politicians have contorted themselves in recent years to avoid mentioning the i-word. It was the same story after Reading, London Bridge, Manchester and every other Islamist atrocity. The ideology that has inspired the murder of 40 innocent people on British soil in the past five years alone remains nameless to our political leaders.
A cloud of
obfuscation covers the country. Consider yesterday's discussion in the Commons.
It was unnerving in its unreality. Yes, some fine tributes were paid to Amess,
and who didn't let out a cheer when Boris Johnson announced that
Southend-on-Sea would be granted city status, something Amess campaigned for
throughout his parliamentary career. And yet there was an elephant in the
chamber. A great, stonking beast whose presence MPs refused to acknowledge as
they instead told stories of personal abuse or called for a tightening of the
laws governing what can be said online. The beast's name? It's that
political-religious ideology that begins with the letter 'i'. Are we allowed to
name it out loud? Judging by its absence from political discussion over the
past four days, it seems not.