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POLICE in the UK, like so many other services under the control of an utterly in competent Conservative government, are overworked and under-resourced, so my question today is why the hell did coppers get themselves involved in an incident involving “disrsepect” of a copy of a Quran at Wakefield’s Kettlethorpe High School?
According to the BBC, four pupils at the school were suspended on Wednesday after the independent councillor for Wakefield East, Akef Akbar, alleged that the Quran had been kicked around school premises by the pupils— something that the school has denied.
Akbar then posted pictures of the slightly scuffed book on his Facebook page.
Image via Facebook
Justifying the decision to suspend the four, who then started to receive death threats, head teacher Tudor Griffiths said the book remained intact and there was “no malicious intent” from those involved.
However, we have made it very clear that their actions did not treat the Quran with the respect it should have, so those involved have been suspended and we will be working with them to ensure they understand why their actions were unacceptable.
Then West Yorkshire Police became involved. A spokesperson said they were “liaising” with the school.
Initial inquiries have confirmed minor damage was caused to the text and officers are continuing to work closely with the school.
Akbar later conceded that reports that the Quran had been burnt or destroyed were untrue, and he had inspected the book.
When it became clear that the incident had been blown completely out of proportion, and death threats issued, Akbar issued a lengthy statement on his Facebook page, claiming he had spent a great deal of time trying to “de-escalate” an issue he himself appears to have ignited.
I have spent the majority of my day dealing with a child who has had threats made to him. Naturally in school people get passionate and react in the wrong way. His mother approached me asking for my assistance.
I went above and beyond to ensure that this child is protected and safeguarded. I went as far as speaking about him in front of the entire community. We had a lengthy meeting with the Muslim community discussing the situation and de-escalating the matter. It has been re-enforced over and over again that absolutely nobody should engage in any violence.
Keyboard warriors chill out and take a moment to appreciate that such a sensitive matter has been handled and dealt with in the best way possible protecting all parties and ensuring justice and safety for all.Some have raised comments of what is being done to protect the children who actually committed the actions.
The BBC report made it to Reddit Atheism, where it has sparked a lively debate. One commenter wrote:
The kind of “minor damage” (scuffing, and small tear on the cover) sounds like the kind of damage any book would get going in and out of a backpack.
Doesn’t even sound like they know if the damage happened on school premises or not. Suspending the kids, involving people who might be offended by it to investigate, and calling the media to report on it is absurd.
I knew Christians who were proud of how beat up and worn out their Bibles were because it was evidence that they were always studying them. If Muslims are required to deeply study their Qurans and keep them looking immaculate, how do they do it?
The moment someone says that the Quran should be treated with more respect than any other book containing any other set of ideas, they are quite clearly attempting to foist their religion onto other people.
Treating objects as holy is an exercise of religious control. If people want to treat their own book as holy, they can do what they want. The moment they expect other people to do the same, they can fuck right off.
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