Politics & Society

The British MPs who want to ban “The Innocence Of Muslims”

Freyja Soelberg | Demotix Protests against The Innocence of Muslims at the US Embassy in London (Demotix)

This one sneaked under the radar before Christmas. On 6 December, UK parliamentarian Alex Cunningham, the Labour MP for Stockton North, tabled an “Early Day Motion” demanding that the British government ban the controversial anti-Islam film “The Innocence of Muslims”. The moved was backed by 14 other MPs — 11 Labour, two Liberal Democrats, and RESPECT’s George Galloway.

Here’s the text of the EDM in full:

That this House notes the anger of Muslim constituents in response to the online video, The Innocence of Muslims; is offended by the vile, Islamophobic slurs it makes about a faith followed by over two billion people worldwide; believes that the film constitutes incitement to hatred on the grounds of race and religion; further believes that the film itself is of appallingly poor quality; and urges the Government tomake provision for its banning.

Note the invocation of our friend Muslim anger; note the absurd generalisation of the feelings of “two billion people worldwide” — none of the 15 signatories is actually Muslim. Note the remark on the “poor quality” of the film, a classic censor’s gambit (“it’s rubbish anyway, so this doesn’t really count as censorship”), but one which also raises the question of whether they’d call for Innocence of Muslims to be banned if it was well made. All rather grim.

The signatories are listed below (source http://www.edms.org.uk). Is your MP part of this censorious set?

Alex Cunningham Stockton North (Labour)
Iain Wright Hartlepool (Labour)
Simon Danczuk Rochdale (Labour)
Ian Lavery Wansbeck (Labour)
Jim Dobbin Heywood and Middleton (Labour)
Andy McDonald Middlesborough, Labour
Ronnie Campbell Blyth Valley (Labour)
Sandra Osborne Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock (Labour)
Kelvin Hopkins Luton North (Labour)
Alan Meale Mansfield (Labour)
George Galloway Bradford West (Respect)
Andrew George St Ives (Liberal Democrat)
Mike Hancock Portsmouth South (Liberal Democrat)
Roger Godsiff Birmingham, Hall Green (Labour)
Mary Glindon North Tyneside (Labour)

Read more on The Innocence of Muslims:

A new argument for censorship? Padraig Reidy asks if this time is different from previous blasphemy rows

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  1. Posted 09Jan13 at 7:39 pm | Permalink
    Paris Claims

    I think the film is far to kind to islam.
    I thought Galloway eventually confessed to being a muslim

  2. Posted 10Jan13 at 12:09 pm | Permalink

    Are they going to start saying that Ibn Ishaq’s “Life of Mohammed” is islamophobic? It documents Mohammed beheading 700 jewish men and boys in 1 day, and him selling their wives and other children off into slavery:


    The apostle of Allah imprisoned the Qurayza in Medina while trenches were dug in the market-place. Then he sent for the men and had their heads struck off so that they fell in the trenches. They were brought out in groups, and among them was Kab, the chief of the tribe. In number, they amounted to six or seven hundred, although some state it to have been eight or nine hundred. All were executed. One man turned to his people and said, ‘It matters not! By God’s will, the children of Israel were destined for this massacre!’ Then he seated himself and his head was struck off.

    Aisha, the wife of the apostle, said, ‘Only one of their women was killed. By Allah! She was with me, talking and laughing, while the apostle slaughtered her countrymen in the marketplace; and when her name was called, I asked, “What is this for?” and she replied, “I am going to be slain!” I asked why and she answered, “For something I have done!” Then she was taken away, and her head was struck off. But I shall never cease to marvel at her good humour and laughter, although she knew that she was to die.” She was the woman who threw a millstone down from the Qurayza fort and killed a Believer.

    Now the apostle distributed the property of the Banu Qurayza, as well as their women and children, to the Muslims, reserving one-fifth for himself. Every horseman received three shares, one for himself and two for his steed, and every foot soldier one share. There were thirty-six horses present on the day of the Qurayza. The apostle dispatched an emissary to Najd with the prisoners, to barter them as slaves in exchange for horses and camels.

    See the full book: http://www.amazon.co.uk/The-Life-Muhammad-I-Ishaq/dp/0196360331

  3. Posted 10Jan13 at 12:11 pm | Permalink

    A group of Labour politicians who don’t see any irony in the imposition of their views on others in stopping a film that attempts to show a different view. And they are being fascist in dictating what should and should not be shown.

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  1. [...] “misquoting a Hadith in Punjabi language”. This was in my mind as I read Index on Censorship reporting on the MPs who tabled an Early Day Motion that urged the government to “make provision for [the] [...]