A Muslim woman and teacher who appeared on BBC Question Time on 31 October took Boris Johnson to task over his comments about burqa-wearing women.
Referring to the reported spike in hate crime towards Muslim women following Johnson’s comments, the woman said:
I don’t like the fact that we are supporting a prime minister who incites hatred.
Her comments, meanwhile, point to the wider issue of the Islamophobia crisis in the Conservative Party. This issue continues to be a problem while simultaneously being ignored or underplayed by the corporate media:
And any discussion of Tory Islamophobia has so far been woefully absent in media coverage of the upcoming general election on 12 December:
Islamophobes in the media
Not only is there no meaningful accountability for Islamophobia among Conservatives, but right-wing Islamophobic commentators are actually running rampant in the media.
On 31 October, for example, Sky News invited former UKIP leader Malcolm Pearson on as a guest commentator. Sky didn’t just give Pearson a platform, though. It also allowed him to spout conspiracy theories about Muslims completely unchallenged:
Prior to this, the Spectator published an article by noted Islamophobe and racist Rod Liddle. Staying true to form, Liddle mocked Muslims and expressed a desire for them to be disenfranchised:
The toll of normalised Islamophobia
For Muslims who would like to engage with a broad range of issues in a general election, the impact of this Islamophobia in the media is exhausting:
Rather than challenging Islamophobia with the same energy that antisemitism is rightly challenged, the media seems to be actively contributing to it. Moreover, mainstream media continues to brush past the institutional Islamophobia in the Conservative Party and its impact on Muslims:
Maybe, at some point, minorities will stop being cannon fodder for right-wing election campaigns. But we don’t appear to be there yet.
Featured image via Twitter/ LabourBlacksPLP