To Kafir With Love: Christian Teacher Sues London School for Discrimination Over Alleged Hateful Statements From Muslim Students

There is an interesting story out of England where a teacher is suing the school system for failing to take action after he made various complaints over Muslim students who direct anti-Christian language toward him and praised the 9-11 hijackers. Nicholas Kafouris, 52, is suing his former school for racial discrimination. It appears that things may be a bit tougher since the days of Mark Thackeray in East London in “To Sir With Love.”

Kafouris claims that his students openly praised Islamic extremists as ‘heroes and martyrs” and said that they want to become suicide bombers. He also says that one student would not let him brush against him to avoid touching a Christian.

He says that headmistress Jill Hankey at Bigland Green Primary School in Tower Hamlets, East London ignored the complaints.

If true, the case raises the issue of how a school should respond to such comments. While children often experiment by voicing such juvenile statements, it is also important for adults to correct such statements rather than reinforce them. Some teachers may want to illicit such comments to facilitate a broader discussion on prejudice and violence. It is important to get students to articulate such views and, hopefully, come to see the intolerance behind those views. This teacher says, however, that the comments were routine and were both anti-Christian and anti-semitic. They were also violent in nature, according to his complaint.

East London has often been cited as an area with a radicalized segment of the Muslim population.

There is an on-going debate over the prosecution of hate speech vis-a-vis the first amendment in this country. However, expressing anti-Christian or anti-Semitic or anti-Muslim sentiment can be threatening to other students.

There may be another side to this story and we have not heard Ms. Hankey’s account. However, the case may focus attention on the role of the school to respond to statements of prejudice from students. It is often a difficult line to walk for teachers who want students to feel free to share their views while opposing statements that could be viewed as threatening to other students or groups.

For the story, click here.

Just in case you haven’t gotten your Lulu fix today . . .

7 thoughts on “To Kafir With Love: Christian Teacher Sues London School for Discrimination Over Alleged Hateful Statements From Muslim Students”

  1. Hey, look – someone helping to keep the cosmic balance of hate speech!

    (Don’t bother clicking on that link to that blog – it’s as much crap as you’d expect. The blog post includes a slur against Mohammad and a carefully selected English translation from a book by one of the guys who compiled things that people said that they heard Mohammad say. Got that – this guy thinks that all Muslims think that they must kill all Jews because of a religious text that’s based on what amounts to a game of telephone. (He, of course, leaves out the fact that this particular compilation of second hand quotes is only seen as significant by Sunni, but not Shia, Muslims.) I don’t doubt that some Muslims take that text seriously, but I’m sure that many balance it’s significance against the Qur’an. He also leaves out the fact that the text in question relates to an “Armageddon” like “final battle”, not to ordinary day to day life, as evidenced by the fact that stones and trees talk in the passage. Some Muslims believe hateful, stupid crap about non-Muslims, and here’s an example of non-Muslims claiming to believe hateful, stupid crap about Muslims.)

  2. I was not under the impression that disruptive speech at school is protected under any construction of the right of free speech, even less so when the speech is threatening to an authority figure. I do not believe any American court would tolerate this type of speech by juveniles who are obviously mouthing sentiments they have heard at home or around the mosque. Glorification of thugs is nothing new for school kids, but wishing to become suicide bombers against innocents to deranged behavior justifying state intervention.

  3. These kids are aged 5 to 11 years. If their behavoir is indicative of their home enviroments, then perhaps adoption may be the best course….

  4. No one likes to be called a caveman these days, because the easy life is not so easy that a caveman can do it these daze … except for the 1% rich cavemen.

    The cavemen who took up demolition brought wrath upon cave dwellers everywhere because what they did is not so easy that cavemen every where can do it.

    Whether you gotta luv em or hate em, they are still very special cavemen doncha know.

  5. Well if they are really this dedicated then maybe they should hold a lab where they can experiment with different techniques. A hands on approach, so to say. They each have to try out in a closed detonation area the different approaches and may they walk out and if they don’t well thats the fate they chose anyway.

    Does the school need parental permission slips and do they get the virgins in the end?

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