Archbishop of Canterbury: ‘Society is coming round to my views on sharia’
If this were true, he should stand for election. And Cranmer would be happy to stand against him.
Except that Dr Williams said no such thing.
This is shoddy and amateur reporting, and only serves as fuel to other reactionary Telegraph journalists who make a living out of prejudicially railing against the Church of England and unjustly impugning the character of the Archbishop of Canterbury.
What the Archbishop actually said was that ‘a number of fairly senior people’ now share his view that the incorporation into UK law of some aspects of Shari’a ‘seems inevitable’. There was no assertion that ‘public opinion is now behind him’, for ‘a number of fairly senior people’ hardly constitutes ‘public opinion’. Instead, he talks of a ‘drift of understanding’ towards what he was saying.
And that there certainly is.
And on this ‘drift of understanding’, he added in a self-deprecating manner, ‘...perhaps I like to think so’. There is no suggestion that this ‘drift of understanding’ constitutes positive affirmation; indeed, there is an expression of humility. It might have assisted if he Archbishop had talked of the limits of Shari’a or the identities of these ‘fairly senior people’. For they are unnamed, unless one be former Lord Chief Justice the Lord Phillips of Worth Matravers.
Douglas Murray, the director of the Centre for Social Cohesion, is quite wrong to lay the blame at the feet of Dr Williams for the Shari’a phenomenon. He said the Archbishop ‘has started a process which is deeply dangerous, damaging to Britain and to Muslim women in Britain. It was a wicked move because it undermines the progressives and gives succour to the extremists’.
Except that Dr Williams did not start this process: he does not possess the authority to permit Shari’a courts in the UK. That was a decision taken by the Government, and they seem content to have these courts arbitrating on matters concerning the family and finance. But it suits the pathologically anti-Anglican journalists at The Telegraph to lay the blame upon the shoulders of the Archbishop, for he looks a little odd, and his pronouncements are usually inaccessible to their GCSE-level of comprehension.
One wonders why they have not blamed the Archbishop for:
Shari’a school dinners
Shari'a criminal justice
Shari’a religious tolerance
Shari’a education (Warning: upsetting and graphic imagery)
Shari’a sex equality
Shari’a freedom of speech
If the Church of England were responsible for all this, the Church of Rome must be responsible for all the social upheavals and ills that have inflicted Europe since AD312.