It will be a bleak day if even Tories can't criticise Islam

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The Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police Commissioner Cressida Dick has said that Boris Johnson's comments on the burka 'did not commit a criminal offence'.

Then she added: “I know that many people have found this offensive.” She further conceded that other people believe he was engaging in a legitimate debate.

Ms Dick is one of the more respected police leaders in the UK, yet the infantilisation of discourse in the UK today is such that she feels the need to engage in such commentary.

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It is telling to find out what Ms Dick thinks about the saga, but she ought to be keeping her views on it private.

It is almost amusing that there was ever any entertaining of the possibility that Mr Johnson had committed an offence. The outspoken Tory MP wrote a colourful article about the notion of a ban on the burka and concluded against a UK ban.

Denmark and France do have such bans, and are to be applauded for their unequivocal defence of their own cultural values: something that is so lacking in modern Britain.

Mr Johnson made a persuasive case against such a ban, but said the burka was “oppressive” and “ridiculous”. He also likened the face-covering garments to letter boxes.

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Whether or not he apologises is a matter for him and whether or not he should be investigated by the Tory Party is a matter for the party’s hierarchy. But it will be a bleak day if even the Conservatives feel that they have to find against him.

In the same way that it is entirely possible to issue relentless criticism of Israel and not be anti-semitic, so it is possible to do the same about the more repressive aspects of Islam without being Islamophobic. Far from being Islamophobic, the UK has been barely critical of Muslim extremism, despite terrorism and some Britons going overseas to fight for Isis savages.

The determination never to offend Islam reached a low when Pastor James McConnell was put on trial in a criminal court in Belfast, after a complaint for a man who praised the ‘peace’ in Mosul brought about by — you guessed it— Isis barbarians.