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Teachers Physically Assaulted by Islamists
by David J. Rusin • Feb 26, 2011 at 12:03 pm
Classroom topics ranging from ham to the Holocaust have been known to inspire complaints, demands, and legal threats by offended Muslims, but sometimes even violence can erupt.
Consider the case of Gary Smith, head of religious education at Central Foundation Girls' School in the Islamist stronghold of Tower Hamlets, a borough of London, England. Recent court proceedings illuminate an incident from last July, when four men attacked Smith with a knife, a metal rod, and a cement block as he walked on the street, leaving him with significant injuries. Why? "They did not approve of him teaching religion to Muslim girls," the Daily Mail reports:
"The evidence from what was said on the probe points overwhelmingly to a religious motive for this attack," the prosecutor concluded. The men pleaded guilty and will remain in custody until sentencing. Police have denied knowing of the gang's intentions beforehand.
This is not the first example of a teacher in Europe being physically assaulted because his or her benign words or actions at school had distressed Muslim sensibilities:
Non-Muslims commit the vast majority of violence suffered by teachers in the West, but what of religiously motivated violence targeting educators? Robust statistics are lacking. However, combining the above cases with the paucity of comparable incidents sparked by teachers' perceived insults to religions other than Islam, there is reason to suspect that in this genre of faith-driven brutality, Islamists once again account for a disproportionate share of assailants.
One thing is certain: sooner or later, the supremacist ideology of radical Islam spawns outbreaks of violence. Minimizing such violence must begin with combating the ideology at its core.