27th Amsterdam Debates is dedicated to “Discrimination and Islamophobia”
On February 14, J. L. is the 27th Amsterdam Tartışmaları held with the theme ” Discrimination and Islamophobia ” . The discussion was initiated by the author of the book mrs . Dr . Ineke van der Valk . The debate was attended by a large group of people.
Ineke van der Valk began her introduction to the following question: ” To what looks like a social science approach to Islamophobia Zoal and how? ” According to her , the concept as such is an important starting point . Van der Valk : “What we understand it to mean ? What are the criteria to indicate ? Any given phenomenon as such What is the relationship between this phenomenon and similar phenomena ? What are causes, contemporary and historical, which are forms of expression , and to what extent they agree or they differ in time and place ? and finally, what can be done and by whom, and how? Which research tools designated to collect all of these data And not unimportant : what will the discussions , what are the hot topics ? That’s already a lot of questions that a lot of knowledge and understanding is needed. ”
Complex social phenomenon
Van der Valk : “Because Islamophobia is a complex social phenomenon , there is also a wealth of insights and tools needed to gain more knowledge and understanding . That means we need insights from the social psychology of prejudice and stereotypes , insights from the sociology of ethnic relations on the relationship minority – majority / discrimination and racism; insights from political science , about political extremism , populism and ideology ; insights text and media studies and linguistics : the patterns in the news and the discourse on Muslim / minority groups ; insights from the study of history , and actually have religion science and Islamic studies to make important contributions . Consider the historical image of Islam , the contacts between Islam and Christianity , East and West and Orientalism . Last but not least , we can of course do without the legal science, the potential for assessing criminality Building on relevant insights from the fields of science , combined with data collection, we can develop an understanding of this phenomenon, with the ultimate goal to be better at . ”
Islamophobia , effective mechanism of social exclusion
According to van der Valk Islamophobia is an effective mechanism of social exclusion , as a form of racism that using texts , pictures , facts and interpretations targeted systematically negative picture is painted of Muslims and / or Islam. She claims that it has an ideological character at first , but also emotions and attitudes they play an important role . Van der Valk : ” This ideology paves the way for exclusion and unequal treatment and discrimination . ”
Islamophobia as a form of racism similar to anti-Semitism
Van der Valk : ” Islamophobia is as a form of racism in a number similar to other forms of racism which other groups are affected , such as anti-Semitism or racism directed toward Gypsies . ” According to van der Valk is the increased influence of an Islamophobic ideology is one of the central elements of the political shifts that are going on for some time in the Netherlands but also in Europe. She also indicated that there is a context of fear and uncertainty about ethnic and religious diversity .
If possible reasons called van der Valk because immigration has led to major demographic changes and that ethnic , national and cultural identities in question came to be . They also mentioned as a contributory cause of increasing globalization which has brought rapid change . Entailed
Experienced Islam as ominous
Van der Valk : ” Islam is perceived as ominous by more and more people . Together with the effects of a number of national and international events in which Muslims were involved ( Rushdie Affair 11 / 09 / murder Gogh v / increase in the ‘ Islamic’ terrorism ) this creates a growing social climate in which discrimination can flourish . The confrontation with crime among certain groups of young people and the perception about this in the press and public opinion contribute significantly . If this discrimination whatsoever once politically organized still and anti Islam and Muslim discourse systematic propaganda is brought into the political debate where it is picked up by the media , eagerly forward then settles quickly a new mindset between the ears general public . You will understand that I here refer to the politics of the PVV . ”
Muslims put more and more apart as socially enemy
According to van der Valk Muslims put more and more apart in recent years , negatively interpreted and portrayed as a social enemy . She said that in her research illustrates this ear discussion of Internet communications , on the basis of statements and actions of the Freedom Party of Islam and Muslims and by paying attention to a steadily growing anti-Islam position within the more traditional right-wing movement. Attention According to van der Valk Islamophobia in aggression and violence is expressed. According to her expressions of violence against individuals are not common , but it seems to take violence against mosques , while verbal expressions of social media on the internet, just play an increasingly important role increase again.
Very few reports made by victims
Van der Valk indicates that provide accurate picture of the state of affairs in Muslim discrimination in the Netherlands is a difficult task because there are very few reports are made. According to her, we only know the tip of the iceberg . Van der Valk : ” Verbal expressions on the Internet playing an increasingly important role . For many people, the Internet plays an important role when it comes to developing a vision . An Islamophobic content is prominent on all kinds of websites . The number of complaints about this in reporting agencies has long been high. Often criminal statements are encountered . A number of sites has a growing membership and a large increase in posts . There is hate speech and insulting remarks . ”
Van der Valk indicates that there are websites that are very active and focus solely on Islam and Muslims are against the “Islamization” of the Netherlands. According to her site burgerjournalisten.nl also one of them. According to her behind this site is a far-right activist who was previously linked to the English Defence League , a sister organization of the English Defence League who was very active in the UK with acts of violence against mosques . It finds that the site includes a list of all the mosques in the Netherlands , a list of names of “hate imams ‘, a list of names of leftist extremists ,” a list of “settlements with noise ” ( mosques are meant ) , a summary of so-called citizen protests etc. offers . They also use taking photos of dogs , pigs , a naked woman kissing gay and friendly waving Orthodox Jews seem to provoke .
During the discussion also shows that people do no reports because they feel that there is nothing is done with it .
Use of qualitative research methods are needed
Ineke van der Valk emphasizes the necessity of using more qualitative research to bring these problems. Attention She proposes to determine whether a verbal expression is Islamophobic , handling invoked by the CERD ( affiliated to UN anti-racism organization ) the following contextual factors :
The content and form of the speech ( it is provocative , right , what ‘s the style ? )
The prevailing social and political climate , such as the existing patterns of discrimination , something in one context is neutral may have a dangerous meaning in another .
The position or status of the speaker ( important politicians and others opinion makers ! )
The range of the speech – the media used , scope , repetition may indicate a deliberate strategy!
According to van der Valk The CERD wears an important consideration in this tension of non-discrimination and freedom of expression . Lively : ” The CERD states : Measures aimed at inciting help should be taken in accordance with the principles of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the Convention and discrimination out of the way . It is therefore all human rights and not just freedom of opinion and expression , but that is a very important principle to refer to as the legitimacy of restrictions is viewed . “On speech
Finally, says van der Valk that it is in its current research focuses on bringing forward not yet reported experiences of discrimination against Muslims , and anti-Muslim hate speech , even if it is directed against non-Muslims , eg because of their alleged collaboration with the Islamization endeavor. It calls on those who have such experiences to report to her.
Participants share the findings of the study
During the discussion, the attitude of the politicians is frequent forward. The ever-changing language of politicians is worrying for most participants . One finds that the politicians need to take action against this form of discrimination and exclusion rather than electoral considerations arising from the populist approach their responsibilities.
The attitude of the police was a lot of criticism . Both the study of Ineke van der Valk as the experiences of participants indicated that the police do not adequately deal with the reports.
The discussion makes clear that the role of the media a thorn in the eyes of the participants . Almost everyone agrees that the media too eager accommodate Islamophobic statements . They put down an image of Muslims and all Muslims are the same. Exceptions are shown as a line which the image of Muslims is put down negative.
About how the Muslims with these issues can and should be , different suggestion mentioned which one stands out above the rest . It reads as follows : Islamophobia and discrimination are facts once . In order to provide a counterweight as Muslims to be more visible in society . Otherwise we will continue after the fact ! The key question in this suggestion is of course ” how are we visible? and we have ourselves in our own hands ? ” .
Ahmet Suat Arı
Moderator Amsterdam Tartışmaları