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Teachers Told to Report 'Suspicious' Muslims

1harderthanyouthink
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4/6/2015 1:14:51 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
In the UK, teachers have been ordered to report any suspicion of Islamic extremism in their schools. One teacher said that: "We are expected to be front-line stormtroopers who listen, spy and notify the authorities of students who we are suspicious of."

The problem with these rules is that the UK is basically saying to Muslims that they are automatically suspected of being criminally-inclined religious fundamentalists, solely because they are Muslims. The National Union of Teachers general secretary said that - "After the attack (Charlie Hebdo), some students, particularly some Muslim students, said they felt if they expressed that they were offended by the cartoons, they would be labelled as extremist."

The negative effects are overtly evident. As most know, there are multiple hadith in Islam that prohibit the creation of visual depictions of religious figures. These students are offended by something due to their religion, and would not be hurting anyone in expressing their feelings - but they are afraid of being impugned for the actions of very small cults - which many Muslims say shouldn't even be considered to follow the same religion.

Thoughts?
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bsh1
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4/6/2015 2:20:39 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 4/6/2015 1:14:51 PM, 1harderthanyouthink wrote:
In the UK, teachers have been ordered to report any suspicion of Islamic extremism in their schools. One teacher said that: "We are expected to be front-line stormtroopers who listen, spy and notify the authorities of students who we are suspicious of."

The problem with these rules is that the UK is basically saying to Muslims that they are automatically suspected of being criminally-inclined religious fundamentalists, solely because they are Muslims. The National Union of Teachers general secretary said that - "After the attack (Charlie Hebdo), some students, particularly some Muslim students, said they felt if they expressed that they were offended by the cartoons, they would be labelled as extremist."

The negative effects are overtly evident. As most know, there are multiple hadith in Islam that prohibit the creation of visual depictions of religious figures. These students are offended by something due to their religion, and would not be hurting anyone in expressing their feelings - but they are afraid of being impugned for the actions of very small cults - which many Muslims say shouldn't even be considered to follow the same religion.

Thoughts?

Eh, this is a tough one. Britain has a fairly huge problem of students leaving to join groups like ISIS and al-Qaeda. So, I don't think the discrimination against Muslims is--in this case--unjustified because it is not arbitrary. They are acting to prevent a group of people who are more likely to join militant, terrorist groups from being able to do that. I also think that asking teachers to report incidences of "Islamic EXTREMISM" is different from saying, "report people just because they're Islamic."
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YYW
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4/6/2015 2:24:48 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
I disagree with the notion that this means that all muslim students are automatically suspect. But, I also don't see how this is any different than any other social-work aspect of teaching.

Teachers are, by their profession, charged with the responsibility of looking out for students wellbeing. That could mean intervening where you've got a kid who is "at risk." The category of "at risk" is pretty broad. It could mean a girl who might be being sexually abused by her father, a boy who isn't getting enough to eat at home, etc. It could also mean kids who are vulnerable to being recruited by extremists. That's just a new reality we face in the world we live in.

I don't expect all teachers to be able to identify all problem students, but it makes sense to have this as an additional safeguard -because what we want is for responsible adults to be able to intervene where possible, and intervention is only possible where people know about the problems.

One of the things that the Boston scenario and other incidences of domestic terrorism have told us is that radicalization is very much a choice, but there are factors that can amplify the probability of it happening. Being a poor child of a first generation muslim immigrant is a very hard way to live, largely because of the huge issues of social integration that assimilating into a new society and culture presents. Where you've got young muslim boys who are maybe being bullied, who have parents who left their home country under duress, who are caught between their own culture and the one into which they were forced, you've got to take into account the vulnerability that such a situation necessarily entails. It is "because" they are vulnerable, that they're "at risk." Teachers are in a really good position to identify those circumstances.

I'm cognizant of the fact that there are risks involved in this. We don't want some racist Welsh creep taking out his Islamophobia on those kids, but I think that as a rule, that's really unlikely to happen here. The UK is a very progressive country, and its people and educators seem to embrace those values. This isn't really a situation where you've got all teachers in the UK who are "another brick in the wall" type teachers.
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1harderthanyouthink
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4/6/2015 2:41:22 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 4/6/2015 2:20:39 PM, bsh1 wrote:
At 4/6/2015 1:14:51 PM, 1harderthanyouthink wrote:
In the UK, teachers have been ordered to report any suspicion of Islamic extremism in their schools. One teacher said that: "We are expected to be front-line stormtroopers who listen, spy and notify the authorities of students who we are suspicious of."

The problem with these rules is that the UK is basically saying to Muslims that they are automatically suspected of being criminally-inclined religious fundamentalists, solely because they are Muslims. The National Union of Teachers general secretary said that - "After the attack (Charlie Hebdo), some students, particularly some Muslim students, said they felt if they expressed that they were offended by the cartoons, they would be labelled as extremist."

The negative effects are overtly evident. As most know, there are multiple hadith in Islam that prohibit the creation of visual depictions of religious figures. These students are offended by something due to their religion, and would not be hurting anyone in expressing their feelings - but they are afraid of being impugned for the actions of very small cults - which many Muslims say shouldn't even be considered to follow the same religion.

Thoughts?

Eh, this is a tough one. Britain has a fairly huge problem of students leaving to join groups like ISIS and al-Qaeda. So, I don't think the discrimination against Muslims is--in this case--unjustified because it is not arbitrary. They are acting to prevent a group of people who are more likely to join militant, terrorist groups from being able to do that. I also think that asking teachers to report incidences of "Islamic EXTREMISM" is different from saying, "report people just because they're Islamic."

Children feel forced to keep silent about personal beliefs because they are afraid of being labeled as a threat when they are not necessarily one. That hurts the ability to have a discussion - which would teach the children how bad these groups are. You shouldn't oppress a group of people into silence because they fear being labelled something they're not.
"It's awfully considerate of you to think of me here,
And I'm much obliged to you for making it clear - that I'm not here."

-Syd Barrett

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1harderthanyouthink
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4/6/2015 2:46:35 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 4/6/2015 2:24:48 PM, YYW wrote:
One of the things that the Boston scenario and other incidences of domestic terrorism have told us is that radicalization is very much a choice, but there are factors that can amplify the probability of it happening. Being a poor child of a first generation muslim immigrant is a very hard way to live, largely because of the huge issues of social integration that assimilating into a new society and culture presents. Where you've got young muslim boys who are maybe being bullied, who have parents who left their home country under duress, who are caught between their own culture and the one into which they were forced, you've got to take into account the vulnerability that such a situation necessarily entails. It is "because" they are vulnerable, that they're "at risk." Teachers are in a really good position to identify those circumstances.

And then, if they are questioned and scrutinized, they would feel more persecuted, no?
"It's awfully considerate of you to think of me here,
And I'm much obliged to you for making it clear - that I'm not here."

-Syd Barrett

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YYW
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4/6/2015 2:47:49 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 4/6/2015 2:46:35 PM, 1harderthanyouthink wrote:
At 4/6/2015 2:24:48 PM, YYW wrote:
One of the things that the Boston scenario and other incidences of domestic terrorism have told us is that radicalization is very much a choice, but there are factors that can amplify the probability of it happening. Being a poor child of a first generation muslim immigrant is a very hard way to live, largely because of the huge issues of social integration that assimilating into a new society and culture presents. Where you've got young muslim boys who are maybe being bullied, who have parents who left their home country under duress, who are caught between their own culture and the one into which they were forced, you've got to take into account the vulnerability that such a situation necessarily entails. It is "because" they are vulnerable, that they're "at risk." Teachers are in a really good position to identify those circumstances.

And then, if they are questioned and scrutinized, they would feel more persecuted, no?

That totally depends on how the teacher goes about doing it. It's not inconceivable that a teacher could screw this up, but I'm willing to risk that because the broader social good here seems to outweigh the individual risks.
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1harderthanyouthink
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4/6/2015 2:52:40 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 4/6/2015 2:47:49 PM, YYW wrote:
At 4/6/2015 2:46:35 PM, 1harderthanyouthink wrote:
At 4/6/2015 2:24:48 PM, YYW wrote:
One of the things that the Boston scenario and other incidences of domestic terrorism have told us is that radicalization is very much a choice, but there are factors that can amplify the probability of it happening. Being a poor child of a first generation muslim immigrant is a very hard way to live, largely because of the huge issues of social integration that assimilating into a new society and culture presents. Where you've got young muslim boys who are maybe being bullied, who have parents who left their home country under duress, who are caught between their own culture and the one into which they were forced, you've got to take into account the vulnerability that such a situation necessarily entails. It is "because" they are vulnerable, that they're "at risk." Teachers are in a really good position to identify those circumstances.

And then, if they are questioned and scrutinized, they would feel more persecuted, no?

That totally depends on how the teacher goes about doing it. It's not inconceivable that a teacher could screw this up, but I'm willing to risk that because the broader social good here seems to outweigh the individual risks.

It should be more of a procedure than questioning, which from a Muslim student's point of view, might be taken as hostility towards their religion. If a young student is being radicalized, it probably won't happen overnight. A radicalization of a student is a failure on the educational system's part, because they should make the realities of fundamentalist cults clear to them.
"It's awfully considerate of you to think of me here,
And I'm much obliged to you for making it clear - that I'm not here."

-Syd Barrett

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YYW
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4/6/2015 8:37:52 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 4/6/2015 2:52:40 PM, 1harderthanyouthink wrote:
At 4/6/2015 2:47:49 PM, YYW wrote:
At 4/6/2015 2:46:35 PM, 1harderthanyouthink wrote:
At 4/6/2015 2:24:48 PM, YYW wrote:
One of the things that the Boston scenario and other incidences of domestic terrorism have told us is that radicalization is very much a choice, but there are factors that can amplify the probability of it happening. Being a poor child of a first generation muslim immigrant is a very hard way to live, largely because of the huge issues of social integration that assimilating into a new society and culture presents. Where you've got young muslim boys who are maybe being bullied, who have parents who left their home country under duress, who are caught between their own culture and the one into which they were forced, you've got to take into account the vulnerability that such a situation necessarily entails. It is "because" they are vulnerable, that they're "at risk." Teachers are in a really good position to identify those circumstances.

And then, if they are questioned and scrutinized, they would feel more persecuted, no?

That totally depends on how the teacher goes about doing it. It's not inconceivable that a teacher could screw this up, but I'm willing to risk that because the broader social good here seems to outweigh the individual risks.

It should be more of a procedure than questioning, which from a Muslim student's point of view, might be taken as hostility towards their religion. If a young student is being radicalized, it probably won't happen overnight. A radicalization of a student is a failure on the educational system's part, because they should make the realities of fundamentalist cults clear to them.

I'm not sure what you mean by "procedure" but I think that it should be more like observation and general interaction. Teachers should take the time to get to know their students, talk to them about things, and be able to get a sense of what things are like at home. Every (good) teacher I've ever known did that...

That does not mean that teachers should only interview all muslim students about their faith; but if a teacher happens to notice that, for example, some Islamic literature is in a student's constant possession, that would be a "conversation starter."

The law as it's written, though, doesn't require this. It only requires students who suspect muslim students of extremism to report them. But, taking small steps at preventing vulnerable Islamic kids (especially boys) from being radicalized has to be something they set out to do, both for the kids themselves and for general public welfare.
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FaustianJustice
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4/7/2015 4:39:05 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
Speaking real generally, a teacher is probably going to report anything they deem as suspicious, because the last thing the school wants is the black eye from turning a blind one to whatever activity it was that aroused the suspicion.

Think about it; is a teacher honestly going to let it slide that some teen for whatever reason may or may not be cooking up a plot to do harm to themselves or others? Does that variety of directive sound like it excludes other suspicious activity is well?

Teacher over hears this in the bathroom:
"Yeah, the shipment comes in tomorrow, we are looking at slinging a few 'teenths around for free on Friday to get them hooked on campus..."

Nope. No Islamic extremism there, carry on!
Here we have an advocate for Islamic arranged marriages demonstrating that children can consent to sex.
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bsh1
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4/7/2015 5:07:17 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 4/6/2015 2:41:22 PM, 1harderthanyouthink wrote:
At 4/6/2015 2:20:39 PM, bsh1 wrote:
At 4/6/2015 1:14:51 PM, 1harderthanyouthink wrote:
In the UK, teachers have been ordered to report any suspicion of Islamic extremism in their schools. One teacher said that: "We are expected to be front-line stormtroopers who listen, spy and notify the authorities of students who we are suspicious of."

The problem with these rules is that the UK is basically saying to Muslims that they are automatically suspected of being criminally-inclined religious fundamentalists, solely because they are Muslims. The National Union of Teachers general secretary said that - "After the attack (Charlie Hebdo), some students, particularly some Muslim students, said they felt if they expressed that they were offended by the cartoons, they would be labelled as extremist."

The negative effects are overtly evident. As most know, there are multiple hadith in Islam that prohibit the creation of visual depictions of religious figures. These students are offended by something due to their religion, and would not be hurting anyone in expressing their feelings - but they are afraid of being impugned for the actions of very small cults - which many Muslims say shouldn't even be considered to follow the same religion.

Thoughts?

Eh, this is a tough one. Britain has a fairly huge problem of students leaving to join groups like ISIS and al-Qaeda. So, I don't think the discrimination against Muslims is--in this case--unjustified because it is not arbitrary. They are acting to prevent a group of people who are more likely to join militant, terrorist groups from being able to do that. I also think that asking teachers to report incidences of "Islamic EXTREMISM" is different from saying, "report people just because they're Islamic."

Children feel forced to keep silent about personal beliefs because they are afraid of being labeled as a threat when they are not necessarily one.

Would you encourage teachers to not report extremist beliefs?

That hurts the ability to have a discussion - which would teach the children how bad these groups are. You shouldn't oppress a group of people into silence because they fear being labelled something they're not.

I don't think urging teachers to report students they think are becoming radicalized is going to deter all muslim students from expressing their beliefs, so I don't think it will stifle discussion. It's not oppression; it's common sense.
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"Twilight isn't just about obtuse metaphors between cannibalism and premarital sex, it also teaches us the futility of hope." - Raisor

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Mirza
Posts: 16,992
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4/7/2015 5:12:41 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
I do not find this wrong, because there is the golden saying "you have nothing to worry about if you have nothing to hide." There is a problem amongst young Muslim immigrants in Europe, sadly, which affects everyone if left untreated, Muslims and non-Muslims alike. If something of this nature can help replenish the troubled individuals in the Islamic community, namely by preventing further evolution toward radical thought, then it deserves my support.

On a different note, Catholic schools should follow the same order. For a different reason, though.
caelin11
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4/8/2015 1:24:36 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
I think that they are trying to protect their schools as a large number of the British are joining ISIS and Al-Queda, but they are only reporting the suspicious, as a teacher would report anyone if they were acting suspicious.
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Skepsikyma
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4/8/2015 7:59:02 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 4/6/2015 1:14:51 PM, 1harderthanyouthink wrote:
In the UK, teachers have been ordered to report any suspicion of Islamic extremism in their schools. One teacher said that: "We are expected to be front-line stormtroopers who listen, spy and notify the authorities of students who we are suspicious of."

The problem with these rules is that the UK is basically saying to Muslims that they are automatically suspected of being criminally-inclined religious fundamentalists, solely because they are Muslims. The National Union of Teachers general secretary said that - "After the attack (Charlie Hebdo), some students, particularly some Muslim students, said they felt if they expressed that they were offended by the cartoons, they would be labelled as extremist."

The negative effects are overtly evident. As most know, there are multiple hadith in Islam that prohibit the creation of visual depictions of religious figures. These students are offended by something due to their religion, and would not be hurting anyone in expressing their feelings - but they are afraid of being impugned for the actions of very small cults - which many Muslims say shouldn't even be considered to follow the same religion.

Thoughts?

The problem with this is that it will cause the alienation and othering of Muslim students, which is in itself a HUGE contributing factor to radicalization. It is much easier to radicalize someone who feels isolated and is already cast as an enemy by the majority then it is to radicalize someone who feels accepted and comfortable within their environment.
"The Collectivist experiment is thoroughly suited (in appearance at least) to the Capitalist society which it proposes to replace. It works with the existing machinery of Capitalism, talks and thinks in the existing terms of Capitalism, appeals to just those appetites which Capitalism has aroused, and ridicules as fantastic and unheard-of just those things in society the memory of which Capitalism has killed among men wherever the blight of it has spread."
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Yassine
Posts: 2,617
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4/8/2015 8:25:07 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 4/8/2015 7:59:02 PM, Skepsikyma wrote:
At 4/6/2015 1:14:51 PM, 1harderthanyouthink wrote:
In the UK, teachers have been ordered to report any suspicion of Islamic extremism in their schools. One teacher said that: "We are expected to be front-line stormtroopers who listen, spy and notify the authorities of students who we are suspicious of."

The problem with these rules is that the UK is basically saying to Muslims that they are automatically suspected of being criminally-inclined religious fundamentalists, solely because they are Muslims. The National Union of Teachers general secretary said that - "After the attack (Charlie Hebdo), some students, particularly some Muslim students, said they felt if they expressed that they were offended by the cartoons, they would be labelled as extremist."

The negative effects are overtly evident. As most know, there are multiple hadith in Islam that prohibit the creation of visual depictions of religious figures. These students are offended by something due to their religion, and would not be hurting anyone in expressing their feelings - but they are afraid of being impugned for the actions of very small cults - which many Muslims say shouldn't even be considered to follow the same religion.

Thoughts?

The problem with this is that it will cause the alienation and othering of Muslim students, which is in itself a HUGE contributing factor to radicalization. It is much easier to radicalize someone who feels isolated and is already cast as an enemy by the majority then it is to radicalize someone who feels accepted and comfortable within their environment.

- Yeeess to this.
- Sometimes (actually always) I don't get the decisions those in authority make, do they know what they are doing? If so then what's their real motive? It can't be good because their decisions usually make things worse!
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Mirza
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4/8/2015 9:00:27 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 4/8/2015 8:25:07 PM, Yassine wrote:
- Yeeess to this.
- Sometimes (actually always) I don't get the decisions those in authority make, do they know what they are doing? If so then what's their real motive? It can't be good because their decisions usually make things worse!
I don't think their motives are bad. Muslim immigrants in Europe unfortunately have a tendency, more than any other group, to join then cause of extremism. To be more careful in paying attention toward suspicious behaviour, such as isolation and perhaps too negative opinions against certain people (e.g., Jews) is not to isolate a group; it is to prevent a very-so-often observed outcome. In Denmark we recently had a terror attack from a youngster who, in class, was reported to having poor opinion on Jews (sort of extreme ones), and was quite isolated; he then attacked a freedom of expression conference and a Jewish synagogue in Copenhagen. If he had been spotted, I think it could have been prevented.
genesis01
Posts: 33
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4/9/2015 3:36:36 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
Well we have to do it to fight against terrorists. Many muslims may get out of school to join groups like ISIS.
ben2974
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4/9/2015 5:15:07 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 4/8/2015 9:00:27 PM, Mirza wrote:
At 4/8/2015 8:25:07 PM, Yassine wrote:
- Yeeess to this.
- Sometimes (actually always) I don't get the decisions those in authority make, do they know what they are doing? If so then what's their real motive? It can't be good because their decisions usually make things worse!
I don't think their motives are bad. Muslim immigrants in Europe unfortunately have a tendency, more than any other group, to join then cause of extremism. To be more careful in paying attention toward suspicious behaviour, such as isolation and perhaps too negative opinions against certain people (e.g., Jews) is not to isolate a group; it is to prevent a very-so-often observed outcome. In Denmark we recently had a terror attack from a youngster who, in class, was reported to having poor opinion on Jews (sort of extreme ones), and was quite isolated; he then attacked a freedom of expression conference and a Jewish synagogue in Copenhagen. If he had been spotted, I think it could have been prevented.

I agree with all this and YYW's post
tajshar2k
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4/9/2015 9:25:11 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
I don't see anything wrong with this. In the end, your protecting yourself and others around you.
"In Guns We Trust" Tajshar2k