Fire Brigades Union called out over heated Pride blog post

Fire Brigades Union called out over heated Pride blog post

The Council of Ex-Muslims of Britain (CEMB) is awaiting a response from the Fire Brigades Union to a letter it wrote after a member of the union said in a blog post that there should be no place at London Pride for the CEMB.

After Lucy Masoud, above, treasurer of the Fire Brigades Union in London, accused the CEMB of spreading hate in a blog post (no longer accessible) on the Union’s website, a letter was sent to Matt Wrack, FBU General Secretary, asking him to clarify the union’s official position vis-a-vis CEMB supporters and Pride.

The CEMB wrote:

As we have mentioned in our response to Ms Masoud, there is a clear distinction between criticism of religion and the religious-Right versus bigotry against people. Charges of Islamophobia erroneously conflate the two. In fact, CEMB’s presence at Pride aimed to combat the hate perpetrated against ex-Muslims and LGBT and to defend the right to reject and criticise religion without fear. This was political protest at its best. Had the FBU not recently backed calls to reclaim Pride as political protest?

Given that apostasy, blasphemy and homosexuality are punishable by death in many countries under Islamic rule, our being at Pride was an important moment for our members, many of whom are refugees. It would be unfortunate if the FBU officially defended the vilification of a minority within a minority providing further justification for our persecution by implying that “offence” is more important than murder.

We look forward to hearing from you on your union’s position.

Meanwhile, Pride organisers have reportedly reacted to a complaint from the East London Mosque – which accused the CEMB contingent of “Islamophobia”  –  to Pride’s advisory board. In a letter to the mosque, it said the board would determine:

Whether CEMB will be allowed to march again in the years ahead.

A spokesman from the event said:

If anyone taking part in our parade makes someone feel ostracised, discriminated against or humiliated, then they are undermining and breaking the very principles on which we exist.

This has infuriated the LGBT Humanist charity the Pink Triangle Trust (PTT). Its Secretary George Broadhead said in a press release today:

This decision is appalling. The accusation from the East London Mosque that the CEMB was inciting hatred against Muslims at this year’s London Pride event is baseless nonsense. East London Mosque seems to have made a brazen attempt to deflect criticism of its bad record on LGBT rights.

It has a history of inviting ultra homophobic speakers to its meetings. Human rights campaigner Peter Tatchell has revealed that he has asked the mosque to meet LGBT Muslims 11 times since 2015 – and all his invitations had been rejected. 

Pride in London seems to be ignoring the widespread Islamic hostility to LGBT relationships and rights, notably the barbaric treatment of LGBT people in Islamic theocracies like Saudi Arabia in which Sharia Law dictates that they are publicly beheaded, stoned or flogged.

The Islamic penalty for apostasy (abandoning the religion) is death, and this of course applies to members of the CEMB, and a recent survey has indicated that more than half of British Muslims (52 percent) think homosexuality should be illegal and nearly half (47 percent) think it is inappropriate for gay people to teach in schools.

The PTT maintains that the CEMB has every right to draw attention to hostility from Islam.

It urges Pride in London organisers not to place religion beyond criticism. This would be a highly regressive step and contrary to its presumed aim to counter homophobia from any source.

29 responses to “Fire Brigades Union called out over heated Pride blog post”

  1. Huw J Nus says:

    Ahhh … The tender mercies, the transparent honesty, the humility, the humanity of the religion of peace. Yeah right. Islam … facism masquerading as a religion.

  2. StephenJP says:

    What the fuck have the FBU got to do with London Pride? Come to that, what locus does the East London Mosque have, given that it and its members are virulently opposed to everything London Pride is supposed to stand for?

    I am an ageing atheist straight privileged white man, but I find the animus and antipathy ranged against the CEMB astonishing, especially from those who objectively ought to be on their side. It has really come to something when a gay rights group seems prepared to kowtow to extreme Islamism.

  3. Paul says:

    I wonder what would happen if the mosque caught fire.
    Perhaps it might be a response Like this – Inshallah.

  4. Daz says:

    “more than half of British Muslims (52 percent) think homosexuality should be illegal and nearly half (47 percent) think it is inappropriate for gay people to teach in schools”

    Which would seem to imply that five percent think homosexuality should be illegal, yet that gay people should be allowed to teach in schools. Which on the face of it seems a tad odd—bordering on contradictory. Do we have a source for the survey?

    As to the FBU, they exist to represent their members as regards working conditions, salaries, etc. They have no business making comments on who may or may not attend Pride marches or any other events which fall outside that remit.

  5. Huw J Nus says:

    Since when did the pious not overstep the boundaries of their remit and force their nasty prejudices upon everyone else. I wouldn’t give a flying fuck about muslims if they observed their religion quietly and unobtrusively. But they don’t. They have to force their dogma on everyone else. Don’t be a homosexual if you are a muslim but don’t demand on pain of death that no one else is allowed to be. And don’t slice off the labia of young girls unless they consent to it at the age of 18, and don’t blow your self up at a pop concert indiscriminately killing dozens of innocent people, and don’t try to shut down freedom of expression and free speech by murdering the editorial staff of satirical publications. If muslims can’t behave in a civilised way then they must expect those of us who distrust, disrespect and loath their overblown demands to push back really very hard indeed.

  6. barriejohn says:

    Daz: This was the survey, I assume (for Channel 4).

    I think you’re being very optimistic if you expect 100% consistency in the views of the Great British Public, be they Muslim or otherwise!

  7. Huw J Nus says:

    Soon we will have muslims in the Metropolitan Fire Brigade stop hosing burning buildings at call to prayer time. Or maybe ask if the burning house is owned by a queer before they unroll the hoses and extinguish the blaze. “OK Achmed, don’t bother putting this one out. Let it burn. It’s owned by a faggot.”

  8. Huw J Nus says:

    And to be even handed about this maybe the Fundamentalist Jew fireman will rescue the man from the conflagration but let the woman be incinerated because he cannot touch her or because she is menstruating. But I suspect Torah has this covered by forbidding Jewish men to be firefighters in the first place.

  9. Broga says:

    StephenJP: ” I find the animus and antipathy ranged against the CEMB astonishing, ”

    It is certainly that but I think there is a reason. The East London Mosque and those of similar outlook fear the possibility of abandoning Islam ever being mentioned.

    That Muslims have actually become ex-Muslims must be very worrying for them. That must be crushed and CEMB voices blocked.

  10. barriejohn says:

    Huw J Nus: (Are you related to Biggus Dickus, by any chance?) Generally speaking, the Abrahamic religions, and some others, are incapable of “observing their religion quietly and unobtrusively” because of their preposterous belief that their god has to be allowed to rule over the affairs of mankind, and that devastating – even “eternal” – judgment awaits us all if this does not happen. It is impossible for the rest of us to simply be allowed to go about OUR business in OUR own way, because we obviously have no idea what is good for us, and (because of these frightening “eternal consequences”) need to be forced, by whatever means necessary, to fall into line with the “creator’s” demands. Don’t tell me that Christianity couldn’t return to the days of the the Inquisition and burnings, and the stonings and beheadings being witnessed in the Middle East today, because it could, and I am afraid that removal of the cancer of religion is the only cure!

  11. Huw J Nus says:

    And before the complaints are submitted I have to ask the question? Is what I wrote above really worse than the outrageous demands and appalling bad behaviour of the pious who cannot let normal rational people get on with their lives without interference and extreme intolerance, threats and violence.

  12. Huw J Nus says:

    And if the pious did behave in a accordance with secular values and be respectful of cultural diversity I would not be compelled to submit the above observations.

  13. barriejohn says:

    Huw J Nus: You don’t know how near the truth you are!

    Saudi Arabia’s religious police stopped schoolgirls from leaving a blazing building because they were not wearing correct Islamic dress, according to Saudi newspapers.

    In a rare criticism of the kingdom’s powerful “mutaween” police, the Saudi media has accused them of hindering attempts to save 15 girls who died in the fire on Monday.( March 2002)

  14. Huw J Nus says:

    Oh BJ … No and then Yes, yes, yes, yes … You are like Sybil Fawtly . Specialist subject the Bleeding Obvious. And I do wish you would stop waving yours about.

  15. Huw J Nus says:

    BJ … I do know. I read stuff too.

  16. barriejohn says:

    HJN: If you’ve read it all, aren’t you stating the Bleeding Obvious yourself?

    Broga: You will see that we still have to suffer the insufferably smug and self-satisfied commenters on this site!

  17. Broga says:

    Barriejohn: But, whatever comes after, everything kicks of with a great piece by Barry Duke.

  18. porko says:

    BJ. People don’t have time to push back against your constant stream of tiresome nosepick responses. They have other and constructive things to things to do. You go ahead and have the last word just like the ‘I know it all and I’m going to tell everyone about it’ numpty that you appear to be.

    And be accurate – Huw said that he reads stuff too. He didn’t say he has read it all. But sometimes you should concede that there are probably people out here who have read, and actually understood correctly, more than you have.

  19. andym says:

    What is more important? Promoting diversity, or universal human rights? I know which I think. Trouble is with prioritising diversity, you have to ally with people who don’t share,actually reject, your tolerant world view(including often you yourself.) You, to them are a means to an end- a useful idiot.

    Such groups can be tolerated, within the limits of incitement to violence, a limit organisations like ELM are at best on the border of. But anyone with a true interest in the same rights for anyone shouldn’t have anything to do with them.

    Welcome back, Broga.

  20. Paul says:

    Thanks for the link. But the poll is probably pointless.
    1000 muslims face to face ? And a control sample of ‘white people’ over 1000 on the phone? Hardly a control sample I think as face to face and phone will always bring different responses.
    Having said that I think if correct this is alarming
    “Of those questioned ……. 78% said they would like to integrate into British life on most things apart from Islamic schooling and some laws.”
    Separated they want and demand, but separated from education and law they must never be. We are one country yes there are different laws in Scotland and Northern Ireland from England & Wales, but they are mostly regional and historical, but I admit Scotland has some religiously inspired civil laws. But they don’t impact the way Islam does and the way Muslims want.

  21. Broga says:

    andym: Thanks.

  22. barriejohn says:

    Wow – we’re in the presence of geniuses! Pity their comments don’t reflect that fact more often!

  23. barriejohn says:

    Paul/andym: Agreed.

  24. Peter Sykes says:

    “…Unlimited tolerance must lead to the disappearance of tolerance. If we extend unlimited tolerance even to those who are intolerant, if we are not prepared to defend a tolerant society against the onslaught of the intolerant, then the tolerant will be destroyed, and tolerance with them. We should therefore claim, in the name of tolerance, the right not to tolerate the intolerant. We should claim that any movement preaching intolerance places itself outside the law, and we should consider incitement to intolerance and persecution as criminal, in the same way as we should consider incitement to murder, or to kidnapping, or to the revival of the slave trade, as criminal.” – Karl R. Popper

  25. andym says:

    I agree with some of that. Trouble is, who gets to define what intolerance is? The FBU are , trying to define the CEMB as the intolerant ones. Incitement to violence is more, if not exactly totally, clear cut, and easier to enforce in law.

    Tolerance of someone’s right to express an opinion is not the same as embracing it. I’m not sure London Pride or the FBU realise that.

  26. Paul says:

    Stephen JP is right and one thing I am struggling with is why the fire brigade union person would comment at all on the Pride event.
    Firemen/ firewomen (it’s not sexist it shows my age and I know women work there too), put out fires, rescue cats and kids’ stuck in railings. And many other things too. It isn’t supposed to be a political organisation but it by its nature is neutral.
    Who attended the event and said what is not her business in the office of the FBU to comment, as an individual yes but as the FBU – no. And it shows how dumb it was to do that.

  27. Daz says:


    Yeah, I agree that expecting people to be totally consistent is something of a pipe dream, but if a survey shows so may people being inconsistent in exactly the same highly unlikely manner, I have to wonder whether there may be some flaw in the survey itself.

    None of which, of course, changes or negates the main points Broadhead makes. I’d just rather people not trot out survey results which imply a percentage-point accuracy when even their own figures show that the error-margin is, frankly, huge. (±5% covers a ten-point spread, after all; hardly insignificant.)

  28. Cali Ron says:

    Paul: LOL. I had a hard time telling the difference between the Trumpton video and the 5 o’clock news hour.