Coburn’s ‘joke’

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UKIP MEP David Coburn’s “Abu Hamza” reference to Humza Yousaf MSP was stupid, nasty and unfunny but I think it neither “racist” nor “Islamo­phobic.”

Were it “racist” to compare a democratically-elected politician to an Islamist terrorist, then thousands of anti-war protesters could be denounced as such for repeatedly comparing US President George W Bush to Osama bin Laden.

It should also be noted that Islam is not a race, and that the modern science of genetics has exposed “race” as a myth.

Beyond this, the term “Islamophobia” is absurd. According to al-Qaeda, Hamas, Hezbollah, Boko Haram, al-Shabaab, Islamic State and the Taleban, “Islam” is the inspiration for their various atrocities. There is, therefore, nothing “phobic” (irrational) about fearing this professed inspiration. 

Should David Coburn now go on to lump other mainstream Muslims in with the likes of Abu Hamza then we will have confirmation that the man is an anti-Muslim bigot.

Unless or until that happens, we should accept Mr Coburn’s apology for his alleged joke.

Keith Gilmour

Netherton Gate