Challenging secularism and Militant Islamism, an ongoing task
On 15 August MST hosted the visit of Baroness Caroline Cox from the British House of Lords. Baroness Cox has been a fearless campaigner for many years, advocating on behalf of the marginalised and the persecuted around the world as part of her work for the Humanitarian Aid and Relief Trust (HART), which has an active branch in Australia.
In her presentation to a sizeable audience at MST, Baroness Cox described the drift towards secular liberalism in Western societies, stating that
“one of the effects of aggressive secular humanism in the UK is that many Christians now feel they suffer from discrimination and intimidation”
The same is true in Australia.
Baroness Cox also highlighted the co-existence of aggressive secular humanism’s assault on Christian faith and the growth of Islamist ideology. While noting that the majority of the world’s 1.2 billion Muslims are law-abiding, hospitable people, there is nevertheless “a growth of militant Islamists and politically strategic Muslims who are working to achieve global domination by various means.”
Baroness Cox argued that “militant Islamists are using the freedoms of democracy to achieve political change to try to destroy democracy and the freedoms which it enshrines.” Baroness Cox considered the various strategies used by militant Islamists to create parallel societies where Muslims existed in a minority, pointing to a policy of rejection of integration, creation of autonomous communities, establishing Muslim enclaves under sharia law, and thereby creating alternative Muslim societies within Western countries.
She described gender discrimination under sharia law. Referring to almost 100 unofficial sharia councils operating in the UK, she quoted from a human rights report which stated that “for many [British] Muslims, sharia courts are in practice part of an institutionalised atmosphere of intimidation, backed by the ultimate sanction of a death threat.”
Baroness Cox has long championed the rights of oppressed Muslim women in the UK from her position in the House of Lords. She has proposed an Arbitration and Mediation Services (Equality) Bill in various forms, to support courageous Muslim women who speak out about their plight and to address the problems of polygamy and unilateral divorce. She has collaborated with organisations working with and for women suffering from ‘honour’-based abuse and violence to help the victims and to prove the need for effective governmental intervention.
While achieving much so far, Baroness Cox stressed that the remaining challenges are great and the task to address them is unfinished. She declared in concluding: “We have an obligation to pass on our spiritual, cultural and political heritage and freedoms undiminished to our children and children’s children. I cannot do everything, but I must not do nothing. I can always PRAY! And then God can show me what He wants me to do!”