It’s official - MPs are ignorant of the relationship between religion and politics
Most MPs are so focused on the superficial that they rarely think about what lies beneath. This is important, not least because the chairman of the Conservative Party’s international office and its human rights commission is also a member of the all- party parliamentary Friends of Islam group. He is but one senior figure who is ignorant of the theological differences which shape the Arab-Muslim world.
The days when philosophers of the calibre of John Stuart Mill entered the House of Commons are long gone. It is no longer one’s intellect or experience of life which is of primary consideration, but (if notice is to be taken of the Conservative Party's selection procedure) it is more a matter of one’s gender, skin colour, or sexuality. Indeed, apart from accountancy and law, the Conservative Party has no particular predilection for any profession. If one is female or brown, or disabled and gay, one’s profession, intellect, life experience, (and even Party membership or political philosophy) are quite immaterial. By focusing candidate selection now on diversifying gender, skin colour, and sexuality, there is no attention being paid to social or academic diversification, which may be deemed more justifiable criteria for selection.
Should the Conservative Party ever find itself returned to power, Cranmer hopes indeed that they may find on their green benches a one-legged lesbian Muslim who also happens to be an expert in economics, defence, education, health, or any other department of state. It is concerning indeed that those who may govern us in the future are being installed now, solely because they possess a vagina, wear a turban, worship Allah, or have sex with their own gender. The cerebrum has ceased to have much significance ar all.
When it comes to knowledge of the world, one would expect those who govern us, or those who aspire to govern us, to be well versed and widely read. Questions around Islam relate to matters that are going to be central to British foreign policy over the coming decades. It is inconceivable that political decisions on war and peace, on life and death, should be made by people ignorant of the theology that gives life to the politics. Indeed, until one understands the theology, one cannot even begin to understand the politics.
Cranmer spent many years studying theology and philosophy, and grasped the religio-political fusion decades ago. The one gap in his knowledge is the difference between the Judean People's Front, and the People's Front of Judea. If any of his communicants can elucidate...