John Humphrys has noticed Luton.
Find your extremes, place them next to each other, light the blue touch paper, stand back and wait for sparks to fly. That’s what the BBC normally does these days, to satisfy an audience that only requires spectacle. Ratings, and so on.
In those terms Luton, Tommy Robinson and Farasat Latif turned out to be a damp squib. There wasn’t even enough friction to generate a warm glow.
But did it achieve something? Did we get to hear the government’s attitude? Did we hear ‘moderate muslims’ also known as ‘caught in the middle Muslims’ explaining how to reconcile Islamic and British values? Did we hear what the ‘we are all Hezbollah now” brigade think about infidel-frei pockets resembling Pakistan’s backwaters popping up within the UK?
At last Humphrys seemed to be wondering if we really must tolerate absolutely everything in the name of tolerance, and if not, does that make the UK…….the dreaded right-wing mouth-frothing thing……….. intolerant?
We did hear the word ‘racism’. ‘Tommy Robinson’ said he was against it. Did we hear what Farasat Latif and his co-religionists thought about it? In particular about the racism inherent in their religion? I think not.
I think, but I can’t be sure, that Humph was hinting that there’s a nice and a nasty Islam. That’s the government’s line. Or is it? Was it just the previous government’s line? I’m not sure. So what was Humphrys’s report meant to be about? Enlighten me, someone.