Here is the official release from the EDL on the plan and the purpose:
“The world is a dangerous place to live in; not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don’t do anything about it.” – Albert Einstein, refugee from Nazi Germany
People have been asking what is the EDL all about, what does it want to achieve, how will it achieve those things?
Well now the English Defence League has a Mission Statement……
(1) HUMAN RIGHTS: Protecting And Promoting Human Rights
The English Defence League (EDL) is a human rights organisation that was founded in the wake of the shocking actions of a small group of Muslim extremists who, at a homecoming parade in Luton, openly mocked the sacrifices of our service personnel without any fear of censure. Although these actions were certainly those of a minority, we believe that they reflect other forms of religiously-inspired intolerance and barbarity that are thriving amongst certain sections of the Muslim population in Britain: including, but not limited to, the denigration and oppression of women, the molestation of young children, the committing of so-called honour killings, homophobia, anti-Semitism, and continued support for those responsible for terrorist atrocities.
Whilst we must always protect against the unjust assumption that all Muslims are complicit in or somehow responsible for these crimes, we must not be afraid to speak freely about these issues. This is why the EDL will continue to work to protect the inalienable rights of all people to protest against radical Islam’s encroachment into the lives of non-Muslims.
We also recognise that Muslims themselves are frequently the main victims of some Islamic traditions and practices. The Government should protect the individual human rights of members of British Muslims. It should ensure that they can openly criticise Islamic orthodoxy, challenge Islamic leaders without fear of retribution, receive full equality before the law (including equal rights for Muslim women), and leave Islam if they see fit, without fear of censure.
British Muslims should be able to safely demand reform of their religion, in order to make it more relevant to the needs of the modern world and more respectful of other groups in society. It is important that they completely reject the views of those who believe that Islam should be taken in its ‘original’, 7th century form, because these interpretations are the antithesis of Western democracy. The onus should be on British Muslims to overcome the problems that blight their religion and achieve nothing short of an Islamic reformation. In line with this, we should do all that we can to empower those who are willing to take this path. We must also ensure that they do not fear reprisals from those who, in line with these 7th century interpretations, would force sharia law upon them.
The EDL calls upon the Government to repeal legislation that prevents effective freedom of speech, for freedom of speech is essential if the human rights abuses that sometimes manifest themselves around Islam are to be stopped.
We believe that the proponents of radical Islam have a stranglehold on British Muslims. These radicals dominate Muslim organisations, remain key figures in British mosques, and are steadily increasing their influence. Radical Islam keeps British Muslims fearful and isolated, especially the women that it encases in the Burqa. It misrepresents their views, stifles freedom of expression, and indoctrinates their children, whilst continually doing a discredit to those who do wish to peacefully co-exist with their fellow Britons.
(2) DEMOCRACY AND THE RULE OF LAW: Promoting Democracy And The Rule Of Law By Opposing Sharia
The European Court of Human Rights has declared that “sharia is incompatible with the fundamental principles of democracy”. Despite this, there are still those who are more than willing to accommodate sharia norms, and who believe that sharia can operate in partnership with our existing traditions and customs. In reality, sharia cannot operate fully as anything other than a complete alternative to our existing legal, political, and social systems. It is a revolution that this country does not want, and one that it must resist. Sharia is most definitely a threat to our democracy.
The operation of Islamic courts, the often unreasonable demand that Islam is given more respect than it is due, and the stealthy incursion of halal meat into the food industry, all demonstrate that sharia is already creeping into our lives. Resentment is already beginning to grow, and could create dangerous divisions if nothing is done. The primacy of British courts must be maintained and defended, fair criticism of religious and political ideologies must be permitted, and consumers must be provided with the information necessary to avoid halal produce should they wish.
Restaurants and fast food chains that do offer halal options should offer non-halal alternatives as well, in order to show respect for other people’s religions, customs, and possible concerns about animal welfare issues (surrounding ritual slaughter). No one should be made to consume halal produce unwittingly, so it must always be labeled – in supermarkets, in restaurants, in schools, and in hospitals – wherever it is available. Free choice in these matters is, after all, a fundamental human right for everybody, not just the Muslim community.
Sharia law makes a fundamental distinction between Muslims and non-Muslims, and the EDL will never allow this sort of iniquitous apartheid to take root in our country. The EDL will therefore oppose sharia appeasement in all its forms, and will actively work to eradicate the sharia-compliant behaviours that are already being adopted, and enforced, in our society.
(3) PUBLIC EDUCATION: Ensuring That The Public Get A Balanced Picture Of Islam
A central part of the EDL’s mission is public education. The British political and media establishment have, for a long time, been presenting a very sanitised and therefore inaccurate view of Islam, shaped by the needs of policy-makers rather than the needs of the public. This has acted as a barrier to informed policy-making and made finding the solution to real problems impossible. In pursuing this self-defeating and destructive policy, the Government has effectively been acting as the propaganda arm of the Muslim Brotherhood. Whether or not is aware of the predicament that it has put itself in, it has so far failed to honestly admit its failures.
We are committed to a campaign of public education to ensure that all aspects of Islam that impact on our society can debated in an open and honest way. Demonisation of Muslims, or of Islam’s critics, adds nothing to the debate. We believe that only by looking at all the facts can society be most effectively and humanly governed. If there are aspects of Muslim tradition that encourage the activities of Islamic radicals and criminals then these need to be properly addressed without fear of accusations of racism, xenophobia, or the even the disingenuous term ‘Islamophobia’.
The public must be provided with a more realistic and less sanitised view of Islam that allows it to ensure that decision-makers are held to account for their policy-making choices, choices that affect the harmony and security of the nation.
The EDL promotes the understanding of Islam and the implications for non-Muslims forced to live alongside it. Islam is not just a religious system, but a political and social ideology that seeks to dominate all non-believers and impose a harsh legal system that rejects democratic accountability and human rights. It runs counter to all that we hold dear within our British liberal democracy, and it must be prepared to change, to conform to secular, liberal ideals and laws, and to contribute to social harmony, rather than causing divisions.
(4) RESPECTING TRADITION: Promoting The Traditions And Culture Of England While At The Same Time Being Open To Embrace The Best That Other Cultures Can Offer
The EDL believes that English Culture has the right to exist and prosper in England. We recognise that culture is not static, that over time changes take place naturally, and that other cultures make contributions that make our shared culture stronger and more vibrant. However, this does not give license to policy-makers to deliberately undermine our culture and impose non-English cultures on the English people in their own land.
If people migrate to this country then they should be expected to respect our culture, its laws, and its traditions, and not expect their own cultures to be promoted by agencies of the state. The best of their cultures will be absorbed naturally and we will all be united by the enhanced culture that results. The onus should always be on foreign cultures to adapt and integrate. If said cultures promote anti-democratic ideas and refuse to accept the authority of our nation’s laws, then the host nation should not be bowing to these ideas in the name of ‘cultural sensitivity’. Law enforcement personnel must be able to enforce the rule of law thoroughly without prejudice or fear. Everyone, after all, is supposed to be equal in the eyes of the law.
The EDL is therefore keen to draw its support from people of all races, all faiths, all political persuasions, and all lifestyle choices. Under its umbrella, all people in England, whatever their background, or origin, can stand united in a desire to stop the imposition of the rules of Islam on non-believers. In order to ensure the continuity of our culture and its institutions, the EDL stands opposed to the creeping Islamisation of our country, because intimately related to the spread of Islamic religion is the political desire to implement an undemocratic alternative to our cherished way of life: the sharia.
Our armed forces stand up and risk their lives every day in order to protect our culture and democratic way of life. They are also reflective of England’s diversity, and are a shining example of what a people can achieve when united together. The EDL is therefore committed to opposing any and all abuse that our men and women in uniform are subjected to, and will campaign for legal remedies to ensure that those working within these important institutions are not exposed to abuse or aggression from within our country.
(5) INTERNATIONAL OUTLOOK: Working In Solidarity With Others Around The World
The EDL is keen to join with others who share our values, wherever they are in the world, and from whatever cultural background they derive. We believe that the demand for sharia is global and therefore needs to be tackled at a global as well as national level, so that this demand will never be succumbed to. The EDL will therefore have an international outlook to enhance and strengthen our domestic efforts, whilst at the same time contributing to the global struggle against Islamic intolerance of Western cultures, customs, religions, politics, and laws. The time for tolerating intolerance has come to an end: it is time for the whole world to unite against a truly Global Jihad.