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Posted by | Posted in Pirates, Society | Posted on 10-10-2008

Bring out the flags (to burn them!)

After the litle rant yesterday about how certain groups take advantage of the good nature of general British society and law, I read this article on the BBC News website about certain Muslim prisoners in the UK. I also had a quick conversation with someone yesterday, who was telling me about how there have been instances of Muslim prisoners being given new clothes and new bed-spreads because sniffer dogs had touched their belongings during routine cell searches.

Things like that are what cause the problems of today. It’s no wonder that people end up hating certain groups or religions, when it’s their hard-earned tax money that goes towards being over-lenient with people who, by rights, don’t deserve it. These prisoners are in prison as punishment for commiting a crime.

Chief Inspector Of Prisons, Anne Owers, made this comment:

There was a perception among officers that some Muslim prisoners operated as a gang and put pressures on non-Muslim prisoners to convert, and on other Muslim prisoners to conform to a strict and extreme interpretation of Islamic practice… In particular, as we have said in relation to other prisons, especially high security prisons, the Prison Service as a whole needs to equip staff better to deal with the growing number of Muslim prisoners.

I’ve got a way to better equip prison staff – don’t send the Muslim criminals to prison. Any who were not born in this country should be immediately deported. For the rest, if they must be sent to prison, send them to a prison that has very few other Muslim convicts, and keep them separated. As far as I can see, you don’t have to be around other believers of your faith in order to practice your faith, and so no “human rights” would be broken in that respect. But I’m pretty sure that if you’re the only person trying to rally others to your cause, you’d have very little success in comparison to the success you’d have if you had 100 or so people already on your side. That would seem to me to be the cure – don’t let people who are trying to cause violence and intolerance rally together.

The same could be said about any religion, of course. Or any group of people that come together with a common goal that goes against what the principles of this country (and the law) stand for. It just so happens that the Islamic faith is in the news for these things far more often than most other faiths, religions, cults, groups or whatever.

If you read the last paragraph of the article, however, you’ll notice this:

Dr Peter Neumann from King’s College London said European governments should observe prisons more closely as they were likely to become “major hubs” for terrorist recruitment, suggesting creating “jihadist prisons” in which to isolate Islamist militants.

Are they having a laugh? Fair enough, whacking all of the nut-jobs™ into the same place will stop anyone else from being converted to extremism, but won’t it just provide a place for like-minded individuals to organise themselves better? I wouldn’t even mind that, if I thought that there’d be no chance of them getting out early (which they would) and being allowed back into mainstream society (which again, they would be) to carry out the very plots they’ve had so long to prepare. And with the current laws standing how they do, the prisoners would be allowed visitors the same as other prisoners of other prisons are, and no doubt the prison staff would be subjected to the same equal opportunities laws that other places of employment are. Meaning that if a person with certain extremist views were to, say, apply for a job as a guard, he or she would have to be considered for the job, despite possibly sharing some of the religious/fundamentalist views that many (or all) of the prisoners would. Does anyone see a conflict of interest there?

But anyway, going back to human rights, how far do they extend when you do something that violates others’ human rights? Most crimes are classified as crimes because they take away someone else’s ability to do something that it is their God-given right to do. A small example would be stealing. If you steal from someone, you are taking away something that they own, which they have the right to possess and use at any time. An extreme example would be murder. Obviously, murdering someone contravenes their right to live.

So if you’re in prison for murder, rape, or any other major crime, how many of your own human rights must you forfeit as punishment for that crime? And who should decide? Many people would say that when you’re in prison, it’s your freedom that you forfeit. But in my opinion, freedom covers a lot of aspects that people take for granted. Sure, there are the literal aspects, such as not being able to go where you want, whenever you want. But perhaps it should extend further than that. Perhaps your right to freedom of speech should be taken away; or perhaps even your right to practice your chosen faith. Some even suggest your right to live should be denied, as happens with capital punishment in the USA.

It seems to me that these issues are not really addressed by anyone that can make a difference. The law must either be so soft, or so vague, that criminals are demanding that they have new clothes and bed sheets because a sniffer dog is considered to be a dirty animal, and that they “contaminate” the prisoner’s clothes when performing their searches. In my eyes, that’s tough luck. If they’d followed the rules in the first place, they wouldn’t be in that predicament. In fact, if they’d followed the rules of the very faith they claim to believe in, they wouldn’t be in that predicament. There’s no telling them that, though.

So thanks to the “bend-over-backwards-and-take-it” attitude of the law when it comes to human rights and equal opportunities (and, to some extent, the ignorance of the great British public in terms of their religious knowledge) people are taking advantage of the system in every possible way. Yesterday, it was the benefits system. Today, it’s the prison system. Eventually, people will realise what’s going on, but for now I guess things will carry on the way they are. The country as a whole needs to stand up for itslef, and people need to realise that they’re not special, and don’t “deserve” any special treatment. It’s at times like these that I admire the overbearing American culture. As they always say, “ask not what your contry can do for you, but what you can do for your country”. We need a little more patriotism like that.

One final note – Facebook has added a new language to it’s repertiore: “English (Pirate)”. Be sure to change ye language options, me hearties!

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