Colluding with ‘Honour’-based violence


by Rumbold
29th June, 2008 at 3:05 pm    

An article today in the Sunday Telegraph highlights how some state officials, including doctors, are putting women in danger from ‘honour’-based violence (HBV) by giving their families confidential information about them:

“Young women fleeing forced marriages are being betrayed by GPs and benefits staff who “collude” with families to return them against their will, a senior police officer police has revealed. Doctors and Job Centre workers are breaching confidentiality rules and passing on vital information to families, allowing them to trace and punish Asian women who are attempting to escape coerced marriages and “honour”-based domestic violence.

Commander Steve Allen, who is the spokesman on forced marriages for Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO), revealed that some doctors have informed girls’ families that they have asked for the contraceptive pill, placing them at risk from fathers or brothers who believe this means the family’s honour has been besmirched. Cmdr Allen also told The Sunday Telegraph that Job Centre workers have accessed the National Insurance details of women who flee violent husbands, tracing where they collect benefits and passing the details on to their families so they can be found and forced back to their marital home.”

This article does not come as a shock, as there have long been bureaucrats who do this sort of thing. These officials who put women at risk fall into three types of categories; the first is the unwitting type, who hands over information to family members without realising the potential consequences. They are the ones who would benefit from training. The second is the typical cultural relativist white liberal, who happily distributes the information, and washes their hands of the consequences thanks to their belief that ‘cultural differences’ excuses HBV. The third, and the most dangerous, are the officials who actively work with families to expose and track down women at risk, either because of family ties or because they believe that HBV is right:

” In another case, reported to a women’s group, a Chief Inspector offered to help a family track down a girl who fled a forced marriage. Zalikha Ahmed, director of the South Yorkshire based women’s refuge Apna Haq, said: “We have to be careful with the police, especially the Asian ones. We don’t visit the station where certain Asian officers are on because some of them are perpetrators and one of them on the record said he would not arrest someone who used force on his wife.””

Given the extent of our surveillance society, and the immense amount of information available to public officials, those running from HBV will probably never be truly safe, as it often would only take one or two sympathetic officials to help a family track someone down.

(Via Devil’s Kitchen.)


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  1. Sam Ambreen — on 29th June, 2008 at 4:04 pm  

    When are people gonna stop using the words ‘honour killing’ or ‘honour crime’ to describe an act which is murder for just about anyone other than ethnics? This down-playing does nothing but make it an ethnic problem with a sensationalist crime of passion twist to it. Having worked with the police, with health professionals, housing officials, social services etc -who come over all coy when addressing BME groups- I am amazed at the extent to which perpetrators of domestic violence are approached with a softly softly approach so as not offend their cultural values.

    It’s time we forgot about the word honour. The dishonour of having to explain my cultural values to non-ethnics, to try an convince them that most of us do not advocate violence is becoming tiresome.

  2. Gege — on 29th June, 2008 at 5:27 pm  

    This is an example of the failure of multiculturalism. If it is known that officers harbour such views, they should be fired immediately.

  3. Rumbold — on 29th June, 2008 at 5:46 pm  

    Sam Ambreen:

    What term would you use to highlight the crime that takes place to defend a person’s ‘honour’ in the eyes of the community? People like me don’t use it because we approve of it, but because it reflects the motivation of the criminal.

  4. Bert Rustle — on 29th June, 2008 at 6:08 pm  

    What was the extent of HBV in the UK in the sixties, seventies and eighties?

    What was the extent of the collusion described in the article in the UK in the sixties, seventies and eighties?

  5. Bert Rustle — on 29th June, 2008 at 7:09 pm  

    Rumbold wrote … the typical cultural relativist white liberal, who happily distributes the information, and washes their hands of the consequences thanks to their belief that ‘cultural differences’ excuses HBV …

    Would it be valid for the typical cultural relativist white liberal to pass comment on this behaviour as it practiced abroad?

    Would it be valid for the typical cultural relativist white liberal to pass comment on arranged marriages, foreign spouses and cousin marriage behaviour as it practiced in the UK?

    What is the relative proportion of the typical cultural relativist white, brown, yellow and black liberals in the UK who behave described in the article?

  6. Raul — on 29th June, 2008 at 7:30 pm  

    I don’t see the problem, just like a crime of passion this is crime of honour, its descriptive and explanatory allowing people to understand, respond adequately to and prevent such crimes if they can.

    Murders happen for different reasons, presumably motive helps people understand, fight and prosecute the crime. If you don’t understand the ‘honour’ part of this how will you develop the support systems that will necessarily take steps to identify the family as part of the threat to support the victims.

    Surely nobody is saying all Asians or whatever are murderers so there is nothing for you to explain, on the contrary why would someone expect you to explain anything, anyone who does would have to explain why. The victims and preventing this sort of mindless murder based on medieval and misplaced ideas of pride and honour are more important than the prejudice of someone, which is a totally irrelevant and a pointless distraction. The problem is there, not with attaching ‘honour’ to killings.

    It is shameful that anyone can collude with these criminals to betray those who have come to them for help or trust to keep their identity a secret. That’s something one would expect in a third world banana republic, not in the UK with rule of law and systems to prevent this kind of abuse of power.

    What I don’t get are the insinuations in the telegraph article, since there are provisions in the UK law to deal with this the question is why they are not being used, no point insinuating certain asian officers or support staff are colluding for whatever reasons, surely what they are doing is blatantly illegal by putting people in real danger and can be prosecuted if found out. So if there is collusion how many people have been identified and prosecuted for this? For instance ‘a chief Inspector’, is he not being prosecuted inspite of evidence or is there no evidence?

  7. Desi Italiana — on 29th June, 2008 at 7:47 pm  

    “This article does not come as a shock”

    Yeah, tell me about it .

  8. halima — on 29th June, 2008 at 7:54 pm  

    Rumbold

    It’s great that you are highlighting this. It will help the cause of women’s empowerment and make us more vigilant and save us from the violent clutches of patriarchy and warped notions of purity, that imprison women and rob them of their lives and souls. Inshallallah.

  9. Philip Hunt — on 29th June, 2008 at 10:47 pm  

    Rumbold: What term would you use to highlight the crime that takes place to defend a person’s ‘honour’ in the eyes of the community? People like me don’t use it because we approve of it, but because it reflects the motivation of the criminal.

    Some people have suggested the term “control killing” since it’s behaviour aimed at controlling someone.

  10. Sunny — on 30th June, 2008 at 2:29 am  

    This is a really sad story. I bet, doing more research into this, its Asian people of those communities giving their names out. So I bet in a local area it’ll be the local Pakistani doctor informing the parents. The punishment should be strict through – striking these people off the medical register.

  11. Don — on 30th June, 2008 at 11:29 am  

    Rumbold, given the serious breach of confidentiality which this represents, I doubt if your first category – unthinkingly handing over details – is large. It certainly sounds in the article like deliberate and active collusion.

  12. Ala — on 30th June, 2008 at 11:43 am  

    I think it’s irrelevant what you call them: honour, pride, chastity, patriarchal killings. What is relevant is that you distinguish this kind of murder from the more islolated deranged and anti-social type, because if we paint all these Asian men (and women) as pathological killers, it is missing the crucial point that these are social crimes that are carried out for the purposes of saving one’s reputation and are not even considered crimes in the societies in which they are carried out. The problem is the culture, not the individuals.

  13. Rumbold — on 30th June, 2008 at 12:43 pm  

    Bert Rustle:

    I’m not sure I quite follow you.

    Halima:

    Thanks.

    Philip Hunt:

    That is a good suggestion, and one that I like, but for the moment, ‘honour’ killings it what everyone recognises, which is why it why probably be used for a long time hence.

    Don:

    “Rumbold, given the serious breach of confidentiality which this represents, I doubt if your first category – unthinkingly handing over details – is large. It certainly sounds in the article like deliberate and active collusion.”

    Sadly I suspect that you are right.

  14. Ally — on 30th June, 2008 at 12:46 pm  

    Like others have said, I really don’t understand this type of report.

    If police officers were known to be beating and abusing people in custody, would ACPO issue a woolly warning to the public to be careful when being arrested? If police officers were known to be taking bribes, would ACPO wring their hands about what a bad thing it is?

    If benefit officers were selling people’s personal details to criminal gangs, would there be half-hearted hints that people maybe shouldn’t go to the benefits office if they’re at risk, or that staff perhaps need more training?

    If doctors were breaking their patients’ confidentiality by informing their employers about chronic health problems would the GMC be breezily left out of the equation?

    Of course not – in all cases the staff involved would be disciplined, sacked or prosecuted, and rightly so.

    If Steve Allen or anyone else has evidence or testimony that these incidents have occurred, where are the investigations? Where are the prosecutions?

    This is an outright f’cking scandal and I’m less than impressed with the response. Maybe I’m being unfair, but it looks to me like ACPO are more guilty than anyone of playing the liberal cultural relativism card.

    I don’t want ACPO making vague statements of support to some European campaign. I want rolling heads.

  15. Rumbold — on 30th June, 2008 at 12:53 pm  

    AllyF:

    Steve Allen has been involved in this sort of thing for a while, so he is not your typical cultural relativist liberal. These things are happening, but it is difficult to prove, because so many people have access to confidental information now. Heads should roll and people should be prosecuted.

  16. Ally — on 30th June, 2008 at 1:10 pm  

    @Rumbold – yeah, I know. Steve Allen does appear to have been on the side of the angels on these issues for a long time, but I still find the general air of ‘gee-shucks, what ya gonna do?’ pervading the Telegraph reporting of this issue immensely infuriating.

    The implication I take from it is that Asian women should be careful about going to the doctor, going to the police, going to civil service agencies because they can’t trust the staff. I really don’t think that’s good enough.

    Meant to say though, thanks for the blog Rumbold, good stuff.

  17. Bert Rustle — on 30th June, 2008 at 1:54 pm  

    Rumbold 13 wrote … I’m not sure I quite follow you. … The questions I asked you are as simple as I can make them.

    Ally 14 wrote … Like others have said, I really don’t understand this type of report. … There was a similar reluctance by the Ruling Class to act when predominantly Muslim men in the North of England were grooming non-Muslim minors for sex, predominantly but not exclusively indigenous.

    BBC Radio 4 Woman’s Hour program did an article Inter-racial Grooming of Girls for Sex It lasts eight minutes.

    From the description … Two men have been jailed for the sexual exploitation of two young girls aged under 16. … The Labour MP for Keighley – Ann Cryer – has said that she has been contacted by mothers who are worried that some Asian men are targeting their under age daughters. The charity CROP – the Coalition for the Removal of Pimping – says that in the last four and a half years they have been contacted by over 200 concerned families. In 35% to 40% of these cases the groups of men involved in exploitation have been predominantly Asian. …

    Reportedly this had been going on for several years, yet the Ruling Class did not prosecute most of the known perpetrators. Initially, the only reports I saw of this was on the BNP website, without corroboration. However there have since been programs on Radio 5 Live and Channel 4, some years after the BNP reports.

    I would hazard a guess that the mindset described in Reporting Diversity is prevalent throughout the Ruling Class, which prevents them drawing attention to undesirable actions of the non-indigenous population.

    The first two questions I asked of Rumbold in comment 5 above are directly relevant.

    I would hazard a guess that the Muslim women concerned will be sacrificed to the promotion of Diversity, as the female minors were and that they would be well advised to avoid Muslim professionals generally.

  18. Sam Ambreen — on 30th June, 2008 at 2:47 pm  

    Rumbold, it’s funny but when people in my community speak of such an incident, they don’t call it an “Izaat” murder, they call it murder.

    “People like me don’t use it because we approve of it, but because it reflects the motivation of the criminal.”

    The motivation of the criminal is not honour, it is control (thanks Phillip Hunt), an “I’ll show them”.

    “Honour” crimes/killings are incredibly disrespectful to their victims, that somehow they must have brought it on themselves.

    Asian man kills his wife for having an affair: Honour Killing.

    White man kills his wife for having an affair…?

  19. Rumbold — on 30th June, 2008 at 5:34 pm  

    AllyF:

    “The implication I take from it is that Asian women should be careful about going to the doctor, going to the police, going to civil service agencies because they can’t trust the staff. I really don’t think that’s good enough.”

    It isn’t good enough, but it is not bad advice either (sadly). These people need to be rooted out, but I wouldn’t know how to do that, apart from the really blatant cases.

    “Meant to say though, thanks for the blog Rumbold, good stuff.”

    Very kind of you, but no need to thank me.

    Bert Rustle:

    Thank you for the clarification. As many have said before, this isn’t a mUslim problem in the sense that it is Islam as the driving forced behind these ‘honour’ killings. Cultural pressures have created an atmosphere whereby it is expecting amongst certain quarters that women should be kept into line. A number of HBV cases involve Hindus, Sikhs and so on, so it is evidentally not a Muslim problem. That is not to say that there aren’t passages in the Qur’an that encourage the punishment of women for ‘misbehaving’, but you can find similar passages in the Bible too.

    Sam Ambreen:

    The motivation is honour, not in the way you or I consider it, but ultimately these murderers think by doing what they do will restore their honour. An ‘honour’ killing is usually held to be one which was agreed on by a number of people, usually inlaws and/or relatives, and which was designed to restore the family’s standing in the eyes of some. This is why your analogy of a white man killing his wife for cheating doesn’t work. If he went down the pub afterwards, some people might sympathise with his decision, but there would have been no pressure for him to kill her from the community. Some British Asian families whose young women have ‘misbehaved’ and not been punished have suffered ostracisation. If you haven’t already read it, I would recommend ‘Crimes of the Community’ by James Brandon.

  20. pounce — on 30th June, 2008 at 5:38 pm  

    Sam Ambreen writes;
    ”Asian man kills his wife for having an affair: Honour Killing.
    White man kills his wife for having an affair…?”

    I hate it when people try to equate ‘Honour killings’ with the example you give above in which to promote this vision that it is not only Asians who kill their own.
    Any killing is wrong, however where honour killings are different is how entire families (and communities ) not only remain silent on such acts but in many instances they actually collude in them. On a whole Non Asian communities in the Uk tend not to and usually report such vile acts to the police. (Mind you with the disintegration of law and order in the UK, we may see more acts of family violence coming to the fore)
    There lies the difference, and saying it isn’t so. Only tells me that this is a bigger problem than the media (And our Uncles and aunties) make out.

  21. Gibs — on 30th June, 2008 at 7:30 pm  

    Rumbold No 19:

    “It isn’t good enough, but it is not bad advice either (sadly).”

    Similarly, if i were a South Asian girl who had been out drinking and clubbing in any large British town,i would be very nervous about getting into a taxi where the driver was Asian – just in case he happened to be a member of the religious/moral police (who despite having no official jurisdiction in this country, seem to have an awful lot of influence over what is going on).

  22. Sofia — on 30th June, 2008 at 8:12 pm  

    Gibs – you from London, because ermmm…there are plenty of ‘South Asian’ girls who like clubbing…and really don’t mind the taxi uncle wallas waiting outside…

  23. Bert Rustle — on 30th June, 2008 at 9:06 pm  

    Rumbold 19 wrote … Thank you for the clarification. … I look forward to thanking you for replying to my questions in comment 5.

    Rumbold 19 wrote … this isn’t … Islam as the driving forced behind these ‘honour’ killings. … A number of HBV cases involve Hindus, Sikhs and so on, so it is evidentally not a Muslim problem. … Indeed. I have seen sporadic reports of this in the Drive-By Media.

    Rumbold 19 wrote … Cultural pressures have created an atmosphere … women should be kept into line. …

    Muslims, Sikhs and Hindus from the India, Pakistan and Bangladesh share a not wholly dissimilar rate of endogamous marriage. Across much of the world marriage to close relatives is common. consang.net gives details of this worldwide. The people who came to Britain in large numbers continue this tradition; see BBC TV Newsnight

    Does anyone know of a study of HBV and endogamous marriage?

    Is HBV another cost of endogamous marriage? Endogamous marriage costs money, to quote “British Pakistanis are 13 times more likely to have children with genetic disorders than the general population – they account for just over 3% of all births but have just under a third of all British children with such illnesses.

    Indeed, Birmingham Primary Care Trust estimates that one in ten of all children born to first cousins in the city either dies in infancy or goes on to develop serious disability as a result of a recessive genetic disorder. [emphasis added]”

    Secondly, these are people born here choosing partners from abroad facilitating chain migration of like minded people – what possibility is there of democracy as we know of it in the West continuing if half the population is married to a cousin?

  24. Gibs — on 30th June, 2008 at 9:07 pm  

    Sofia – actually no i’m not. I’m from “up north” and to be fair, i was bringing a “northern perspective” (ie west & south yorkshire & the North West) to my last email. It could of course equally apply to towns in the midlands.

    I did realise of course that it wouldn’t be so much of a problem in say East Anglia and the South West. Glad to hear that it’s not as bad as all that in the parts of London either.

  25. mixtogether — on 1st July, 2008 at 12:17 am  

    Rumbold,

    thanks for a great post. This issue has been highlighted at an increasing number of conferences on HBV issues. It is a particularly insidious form of information leaking as it relies on cover from the widespread social engineering that says medical professionals are to be trusted.

    It represents an infiltration into the heart of what should be the most secure and confidential information (if such a thing still exists) by people operating unde the cover of Multiculturalism. Both the police and the medical infiltrations are extremely alarming.

    Commander Allen is a really top man, and he ‘gets’ the problem exactly. Along with Tony Hutchison (a 6 foot no-nonsense Geordie who you may have seen giving briefings on the ‘canoe man’) he is bringing a much needed dose of straight thinking to the police response to HBV. Unfortunately there are forces ranged against them:

    “Philip Balmforth, a West Yorkshire policeman who is recognised as one of the UK’s leading authorities on honour-violence, has been threatened with the sack for speaking to the press.

    Balmforth has been suspended from his duty and faces a disciplinary hearing later this week for giving an interview to The Times about Asian children who go missing from schools in Bradford.” (http://www.socialcohesion.co.uk/blog/human_rights/)

    The fundamental problem with the current response to HBV is that it goes top-down, dealing with the problems and not the causes. The major incidents of HBV and honour murders which make the press are in fact the tip of an enormous iceberg of interlinked problems which pervade significant parts of the UK Asian population (leaving aside the sub-continent itself).

    Fine words abound, and many of them are heartfelt, including those from the police officers named above. Some are being backed up by action, and Karma Nirvana under Jasvinder Sanghera is the key force here.

    However, until the political and voluntary establishment (and yes, bloggers and journalists) have the guts to publicly point the finger at the known high-risk groups and force a debate, lives will continue to be wasted. Not only by honour murders, but by the blight of forced marriages and the subtly crippling methods of family abandonment and casting out.

    I believe that one of the key methods of disrupting the enclosed system which endorses all of these cruel practices is to get behind mixed couples and break the taboo which keeps so many of them in hiding. If all the mixed couples both now and in the future could stand up publicly with confidence, it would begin a sea change, from the bottom up. That is why I devote the vast majority of my spare time outside my 9-5 job to MixTogether.

    It’s nice to feel like I’m not alone at my computer every night, which is why this blog post has made my day.

    Thanks.

    p.s. your 3 categories of information leaker left out the chilling 4th category- the professional bounty hunters who operate among the Asian community…

  26. mixtogether — on 1st July, 2008 at 12:38 am  

    Sam Aberdeen:

    “Asian man kills his wife for having an affair: Honour Killing.

    White man kills his wife for having an affair…?”

    How about:

    Bunch of white guys kidnap a young Asian girl, take her overseas to be raped repeatedly by a man she has never met before: Kidnap and rape

    Bunch of Asian guys kidnap a young Asian girl, take her overseas to be raped repeatedly by a man she has never met before: Forced Marriage

    or

    17,000 violent assaults in a year on gay people (hypothetically): outcry and immediate, strident action.

    17,000 violent assaults in a year on young Asian women by family members for ‘honour’ (reported in the Independent, from police estimates): virtually nothing.

    Makes you think, doesn’t it?

  27. Niels C — on 1st July, 2008 at 2:35 pm  

    Or what about this case i todays news i danish newspapers.
    A danish born pakistani woman, who has been living i Pakistan at her husbonds brothers house the last couple of years( reasons unknown) has been killed by the brother.
    Reasosn mentioned, the brother said ‘ She didn’t obey me’ – well another reason could be that she had given birth to two daughters, and now wasn’t able to have more kids.
    Sam Aberdeens remark about the de diffenrent categorizations of white and etnic wife killings are just stupid. None of the danish documented HBV cases had their rotts in an affair, a few cases where a man has attacked the ex wife can be related to this situation.
    In Denmark it’s wellknown that the woman crises centre don’t use taxi drivers who come from muslim countries.

  28. halima — on 1st July, 2008 at 2:58 pm  

    28 Mixtogether

    Good points. The bigger issue is domestic violence or gender based violence and criminality.

    And we have a huge problems on our hands across all of Britain’s communities. Didn’t the Met run this highly effective campaign on the Tube on domestic violence a while ago? Something like that would be great. I remember thinking how effective it was that each pedestrian was faced with the horror of domestic violence against women every morning while I waited for a train. I saw the reaction on men’s faces as we both thought the same: could this still be the case in 21st century London? Peer pressure and social taboos are also an effective way to combat such deep-seated attitudes against women.

    Similarly here in Nepal, crimes against women is so prevalent – you can beat a women to death or near death if she does anything as daring as defend human rights. A husband recently put poison in his wife’s drink because she was a prominent human rights defender and he didn’t want her to work. Two weeks ago, in fact. There was no defence of ‘honour’, just punishment because she was choosing to work and not stay at home. So? The broader attitudes that allows violence against women to take place is the fundemental issue – not the ‘culture’ of this country or that. If we stuck at ‘cultural’ explanations for gender based violence we couldn’t really defend any universal human rights – women’s rights or children’s rights.

  29. Gibs — on 1st July, 2008 at 3:10 pm  

    Niels C,

    What you say about taxi drivers in Denmark is similar to the point i made in #21.

    I do hope that honour killings are much rarer in the Nordic countries than they are in the UK, and I hope it stays rare.

    Btw – Scandinavia is a great place to go on summer holiday. I’ve been for the last few summers and have to say that British people who prefer the Mediteranean (Spain, Portugal etc) dont know what they are missing !

  30. Galloise Blonde — on 1st July, 2008 at 4:09 pm  

    Bert Rustle: It’s not exactly a study, but I recommend Germaine Tillion’s Republic of Cousins, also printed as My Husband My Cousin, which makes a theoretical link between endogamy and ‘honour’ crime in the Maghreb.

    As for the Telegraph article, I get the impression it was cobbled together from a chat from Steve, the rest seems to be cribbed from the Civitas/Brandon report. I hoping that with the passing of the new Forced Marriage act, which according to the recommendations from the parliamentary sub-committee recently published, will make FMU guidelines mandatory, that we will be in a better position to take action against those who collude in these crimes.

  31. Bert Rustle — on 1st July, 2008 at 4:50 pm  

    Galloise Blonde 30 wrote … I recommend Germaine Tillion’s Republic of Cousins … My Husband My Cousin, which makes a theoretical link between endogamy and ‘honour’ crime in the Maghreb. …

    Thank you.

  32. halima — on 1st July, 2008 at 6:56 pm  

    I was interested in comparing figures on ‘honour’related crimes and figures on domestic violence.. .. Not sure if these figures are overlapping – as surely honour related violence is domestic violence so …. and whether figures on honour violence are disporpotionately higher relative to British South Asian population size, but still interesting to look at the statistics:

    Sunday, 10 February 2008, Independent reported ..

    Up to 17,000 women in Britain are being subjected to “honour” related violence, including murder, every year, according to police chiefs. This figure probably dismisses actual figures which go unreported.

    According to crimeinfo.gov.uk

    How many people are affected by domestic violence?

    The police in the UK receive, on average, one call a minute from someone asking for help in a domestic violence incident. Yet this figure — over 500,000 incidents a year — is probably only a third of the domestic violence that actually happens. In four out of every five incidents the victims are women, and more than half of victims of domestic violence are victimised more than once. No other type of crime has a repeat victimisation rate this high.

    We can’t talk about honour based violence without looking at the environment for domestic violence against women – which is endemic in British society – across all communities.

    What a horrible thought to go to sleep with …

  33. Rumbold — on 1st July, 2008 at 9:10 pm  

    Gibs:

    Good point (about the taxis).

    Mixtogether:

    Who is Tony Hutchinson? I can’t recall his name. I agree that there are still many people opposed to cracking down on HBV, especially within the police and other state bodies. Hopefully they will be overcome one day. Regarding Philip Balmforth, have you heard anymore about his case? The EDM put forward by Ann Cryer has now reached 72 MPs, but I haven’t anything about him for a bit. I didn’t inculde the bounty hunters as a catagory, because I was just thinking about those who are state officials (unless there have been some cases that I haven’t come across).

    You are right that one of the ways to combat the attitdues to shape HBV is to give more backing to mixed couples. However, the reason why the state focuses on the crime rather than the attidues is that it is easier to prevent and/or prosecuted a crime then it is to change someone’s attidue. HBV will never fade until attitudes change, but how on earth do you change the attitude of someone who is willing to kill his own daughter for flirting?

    “It’s nice to feel like I’m not alone at my computer every night, which is why this blog post has made my day.”

    I know that we have our disagreements, but you do brilliant work as well. Thanks.

    Galloise Blonde:

    The link to your site doesn’t work today. It just says that the domain name has expired or is being renewed.

  34. MixTogether — on 1st July, 2008 at 10:14 pm  

    33 Rumbold

    “how on earth do you change the attitude of someone who is willing to kill his own daughter for flirting”

    My proposal, as always, is to work in a layered way from the bottom up to de-stabilise the hardest attitudes at the top.

    The killers are hard cases who- you are right- are unlikely to switch thinking at the drop of a hat. But race politics 101, lesson 1, states that you cannot treat racial groups as homogeneous. Among the Asian community there exist a great many attitudes and approaches, but the traditionalists hold the most influence around the major social hubs- temples, Gurudwaras and mosques.

    At the moment if you are Asian and against the traditional influence it is very hard to make a convincing case to the older generation e.g. parents and elders, because you cannot invoke a universally recognised reference point to back up your arguments. Contrast this with e.g. the workplace, where 30+ years of legislation and communication HAVE changed attitudes, and can be invoked as a reference point.

    If there were a public drive to confront the bad attitudes in the Asian and other communities, with say posters, media content, and the backing of Asian (and non-Asian) celebs a bit more relevant today than Meera Syal and Sanjeev Bhaskar* THAT would be the beginning of a reference point.

    *try Nihal, Kayper, Sangeeta Myska… I would say Konnie Huq as she introduced MixTogether’s piece on News 24- but have you ever read her interview in Asiana?! I’m not sure she’d get off the fence…

  35. kELvi — on 2nd July, 2008 at 11:14 pm  

    When I posted some news about such incidents (involving extremists from a particular community) a few weeks back, the Eds excised it, no doubt appalled that anyone could be so selective in their criticism. The report quoted on this post, no doubt is more acceptable, as it pussyfoots around the issue, using the pleasant appellation South Asian/Asian. Nice!

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