5 QUOTES ON THE UGLINESS OF ISLAMOPHOBIA

Islamophobia has been on a sharp and steady increase ever since 9/11. This increase is even more prominent now since the rise of Trump in America, and the rise of the far right all across Europe. In order to further understand the complexities of the darkness of Islamophobia, below are 5 quotes from various authors highlighting the many different aspects of this ugly turn of events.

Of particular interest are the first and last quotes. The first is from the perspective of the struggle of Black people in America, whilst the last is from the perspective of Jews in World War II (a quote I have used before).

911 learn 2


I went on the local NPR station and someone called into the show with a comment about our #AskAMuslim project. She said she was an elderly black woman and went on to describe how she’s only ever seen the kind of discrimination that Muslims are facing right now in the discrimination and racism that black people experienced and continue to experience in America. She rocked me and all I could do was tear up for all the injustice in the world. I could only express to her that #BlackLivesMatter and #antiIslamophobia work are combating the very same problematic ideology. Not only because one third of American Muslims are black, but even more so because ultimately all of these symptoms rise from the disease that is fear of the unknown which leads to fighting that which we do not know. – Mona Haydar


…the mills of Islamophobia do not need any intellectual precision or historical clarity. What keeps them churning is the paranoia of the rich as well as the unfocused fury and rampant frustration of citizens who feel left or pushed behind in highly unequal societies…Like anti-Semitism, Islamophobia breeds in the swamp of fear and insecurity that is truly the modern world for many people. In the hands of skillful and resourceful manipulators, it can turn into a very dangerous force, as we have now witnessed with Trump. – Pankaj Mishra


Those who hate Islam project their anxieties on it, seeing it as fostering violence and lawlessness and fanaticism. They ignore that Western societies in the past two centuries have been many times more violent than Muslim ones. They make “Muslim” a marked identity, as the exotic and exceptional, and for that reason can never accept the normalization of American Islam…Westerners have to stop using Islam to symbolize things that have gone wrong in their own societies, and instead to take it on its own terms. – Juan Cole, describing a “typical American Islamophobe”


Think before asking people to explain an entire race, religion, civilization or geographic region to you simply because they happen to identify with that background. Don’t expect a 14-year-old girl who covers her hair to explain all of Islam to you in ten minutes or less simply because you’re too lazy to read a book. Get a library card and let her eat her lunch in peace. – Melody Moezzi


“Dear James,
I heard you mentioned that you want to avoid conversation about the ongoing anti-Muslim rhetoric that is so prominent in the press at the moment, but I really think you missed a trick here.
I just wanted to say that although I am not a religious man I have a strong Jewish heritage. Today being the 71st anniversary of the Holocaust, which is very personal to me for obvious reasons, I think we really need to make the link of how Muslims are being subjected daily to such lazy prejudices, just as my ancestors were, all those years ago.
On this day of remembrance Jews, more than anyone, need to stand up for the Muslim community and the vile rubbish that is spouted in the press pretty much every day. Leave all that Middle East nonsense to one side for the moment, we need to remember that it was not that long ago it was us who were on the receiving end of this type of treatment, and we all know where that ended up.
A lot of my family emigrated from white Russia during the pogroms in the early 19th century to settle in the slums of east London, where it was commonplace to see signs reading ‘No dogs, no Irish, no Jews’. It feels like we’re receding into a society that is happy to say ‘No Muslims’. Just look at what’s going on in the States with that lunatic Donald Trump. We simply cannot tolerate this. That’s all I wanted to say.
Keep the peace.”
Josh, on today of all days I am happy to provide you with an opportunity to bring that message to a slightly wider audience, in the probably naive hope that some people might listen.
James O’Brein, radio presenter for LBC, reading a rather moving letter on Holocaust Memorial Day from a Jewish man

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5 Articles And 12 Quotes, Including 1 From Will Smith

Below are 12 quotes that hopefully will inspire and uplift, including a recent quote from Will Smith. There are also links to 5 rather interesting articles, covering such topics as climate change and Islamic history, ‘gangsta Islam’, Islam in Europe, Muslims in Elizabethan England, and Muslim hipsters, whatever those are. Enjoy!


Quotes…

I am dedicated to being a light in this world. There’s a lot of suffering, a lot of people are suffering in this world. And when you see my material, and when I present myself in public, and what I’m trying to build with my family and my friends, I just want you to know I am dedicated till I die to light and to love. – Will Smith, from his acceptance speech when receiving the Generation Award at the MTV Movie Awards, Apr 2016

Will Smith 2016

If you’re not the lead elephant, the scenery never changes. – from the movie Anna And The King (1999)

I’ve never met a strong person with an easy past. – Anon

This may be a sad chapter but you are not a sad story – Anon

Love yourself so much that when someone treats you wrong, you recognize it. – Rena

Someone who wants the best for you is what’s best for you. – Anon

It costs $0.00 to be a decent person. – Anon

Someday you will look back and know exactly why it had to happen. – Anon

REPEAT AFTER ME: ‘My current situation is not my final destination’. – Anon

Don’t set yourself on fire to keep others warm. – Anon

When a person tells you that you hurt them, you don’t get to decide that you didn’t. – Louis CK

“No” just means “Move on to your next opportunity”. – Anon


Articles…

How Climatic Stress Possibly Shaped Early Islam And The History Of The Middle East

The idea of climate having an impact on societies is not new in the Muslim aspect. Amongst many others, medieval poet al-Jahiz (781-869) and the great Andalusian historiographer Ibn Khaldun (1332-1406) preceded Western thinkers by many centuries in elaborating the idea of climatic determinism, even if they took the idea to the extremes. While not subscribing to climatic determinism ourselves, it should not be ruled out that responding to direct and indirect challenges posed by a harsh climate could have been one of the many driving forces shaping Muslim history and occasionally, even the inspiration for some of the doctrines of Islam both in the past and in the present.

Gangsta Islam Has Little To Do With Religion

For exponents of Gangsta Islam, mass murder represents an act of self-empowerment — not all that different from what Oscar Wilde called an “intensified assertion of individualism.” Wilde hailed “sin” as release from stagnation; he was writing during the late 19th century when most of Europe’s bourgeois elites, unable to accommodate mass aspirations for prosperity and stability, looked venal and devious.

How Islam Created Europe

Europe was essentially defined by Islam. And Islam is redefining it now.

Mipsters: Like Hipsters, But Muslim

A mipster…a Muslim hipster…a sub-type of a gummy…a global, urban Muslim…

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Why Elizabethan England Was Obsessed With Islam

…the character of Othello was probably based on Muhammad al-Annuri, ambassador to Elizabeth’s court, who Shakespeare may have encountered during his six-month embassy to London in 1600.

OMID DJALILI ON DUBAI, OSAMA, AND MORE

As well as being a big fan of Frankie Boyle and Stewart Lee, I also really like Omid Djalili (pronounced “Omeed Jaleelee”). Djalili describes himself as “the Les Dennis of the Middle East” and “the man who puts the fat into fatwa, the fun into fundamentalism and the ham into Hamas” (check out my About page for similarly crazy descriptions of myself).

He has also come up with such one-liners as “I am the only Iranian comedian in the world. Technically that’s three more than Germany”, “Keep the laughter coming, it helps with my asylum application”, and “What do you call an honest Iranian businessman? Asif”.

He is probably best known as a bit of a movie star, mainly playing Arab scum-bag bit-parts: he sold queer giraffes to Oliver Reed in Gladiator (2000), he was killed by a scarab beetle in The Mummy (1999), and he also starred alongside Robert Redford and Brad Pitt in Spy Game (2001). Here is an extract from his brilliant autobiography Hopeful about Djalili filming Spy Game:

No autobiography is complete without an element of shameless name-dropping, so I will end with my favourite showbiz story to illustrate a point that might become clearer in retrospect:

I, Omid Djalili, from the crazy guesthouse and with my string of failed A levels, spent a brief time with Robert Redford. I’d even tried to be funny with him after we were introduced on the set of the film Spy Game (also starring Brad Pitt) by the late and very wonderful director Tony Scott. I was young and eager to make an impression:

‘Mr Redford,’ I said, ‘I’m a big fan. I must say, you were the best thing in Hawaii 5-0.’

After a slight pause during which he sized me up with steely blue eyes he replied, ‘Why, thank you. You were great in Dr Zhivago [starring a young and extremely handsome Omar Sharif]…but you’ve let yourself go.’

Very important learning point number seven — humility. Never mess about with the greats when it comes to being humorous. They’re always going to be funnier than you.

But it was on that particular film set where something miraculous occurred. As we finished one day — and I’ll never forget those immortal words, ‘That’s a wrap on Brad, Robert and Omid’ — the three of us were led through a marketplace in Casablanca to our waiting cars. It had not gone unnoticed that The Mummy was showing several times that week on the local film channel. This was the most popular channel in the country, watched consistently by an audience of two million a day. People in Casablanca were beginning to recognise me, and I must admit this was thrilling, especially as I spent most of my free time roaming the streets (so yes, it happened a lot, I made sure of that).

As we made our way through the market, I walked at a respectful distance behind the two blond bombshell film stars and observed them striding confidently past Moroccan folk who clocked them with a faint glimmer of recognition. With Redford it was ‘he looks familiar’; with Brad Pitt, not as famous then as he is now, the Moroccans seemed to be thinking ‘that face rings a bell’ but still nothing. Suddenly their eyes fell on me and immediately lit up. ‘Ya Allahhhhh! Mumia! (The Mummy!) ‘ and a crowd surged forwards. There is a photo somewhere of Pitt and Redford looking back to see what the commotion was all about and seeing me surrounded by an eager crowd, hyper-ventilating and signing autographs. Who needed the Mountainview Theatre School panel now? – Omid Djalilil, from his autobiography Hopeful

Anyways, below is a clip of Omid in 2014 from the BBC’s Live At The Apollo, along with a few choice quotes from that show. If you like this clip then there are also a few others that follow. Enjoy!

Good evening! Are you well? [YEAH] You all had a drink? [YEAH] You all up for a laugh? [YEAH] And THAT is why the West must be destroyed!…

Last year was the year they killed Osama bin Laden. We all remember where we were when bin Laden was killed. I remember where I was. I was in a compound in Abbottabad, pretending to be a woman. We spent ten years looking for bin Laden. We scoured 27 countries, looking for bin Laden. We spent 2 billion dollars, looking for bin Laden. Where do we find him? In his house! [APPLAUSE]…

The Arab Spring went all round the world. It started in Tunisia, then it went to Egypt and Syria. Every country in the Middle East was galvanised. Everywhere except Dubai. Because Dubai is a very interesting country. They’re a bit too, umm…There’s too much money there. There were people on the streets, going, “What do we want? Democracy! When do we want it? After happy hour!” And when you go there, they always give you some kind of…There’s always a guide who goes, “Omid, you come here. You come to Dubai. We are the Las Vegas of the Middle East. You want girl? We get you girl. You want drink? You can drink. You want to gamble? You can gamble. All day long. Girl, drink, gamble. Gamble, drink, girl. Drink, girl…You want to drink girl? We blend girl, you drink it! You want all three? We blend girl, you drink it, we bet how quickly you down it in one!” I said, “Actually, no. I’m not into all of that. I’m actually quite hungry.” “Ah, what you want, my friend? Anything you want.” I said, “I quite fancy a bacon sandwich.” He went, “Pork?! What do you think we are, infidels? This is a Muslim country! Now kindly drink your woman and leave!”…

There is a thin line between being genuinely entertaining and mental illness…

I will say, ladies and gentlemen, this kind of stuff, it’s always hard to get laughs because people do get offended and I hate to offend. It’s just a gift I have. It is! It is, because I was in Wales and I told…I said, “I love the fact people in Wales, you love your kind of terrorism, don’t you?” About 100 years ago, they used to put bombs by the sewers, by the rivers. And whenever English dignitaries would come, no-one would die, they’d just shower them with sewage. I said, “It’s great to be in the home of sewer-side bombing.” OK? And people got offended because you come here with your suicide bombing jokes. I used to do jokes about suicide bombing. I’d say, you know, “There are now suicide bomber schools now. I mean, how does that even work? ‘Where’s your bag?’ ‘Oh, I left it on the bus.’ ‘Well done. House point.’”…

I love young people, you know. I was on a long-haul flight once. I was flying a ten-hour flight. There was a young person sat next to me. I thought, we haven’t had a chat. It’s two hours in. I might have a quick chat. “Hello, do you want to have a quick chat? Might make the time go by quicker.” She went, “Sure, what do you want to talk about?” I said facetiously, “Why don’t we talk about Iran’s nuclear weapons programme?” And she goes, “All right, then.” And she put down her crayon. She goes, “Before we do that, can I ask YOU a question?” I said, “Sure.” She goes, “When a horsey does a poo-poo, it comes out in long tubes, and yet when a sheep does a poo-poo, it comes out in little pellets, and yet when a cow does a poo-poo, it comes out in flat, round pats. Why is that?” I said, “That’s actually a very good question. I’ve got no idea.” She goes, “Well, how do you expect me to talk about Iran’s nuclear weapons programme when you don’t know shit?”…

TRUMPY McTRUMPFACE MARCHES ON?

About eight months ago Donald Trumpy McTrumpFace was a political joke. Fast forward to just a few weeks ago and Trump was no longer a laughing matter, instead he was this unstoppable presidential juggernaut, Trumping his way to the Republican nomination, and then all the way to the White House. However, since recent events in Wisconsin, where Trump lost so decisively to rival Ted Cruz, no one is quite so sure now. A few weeks ago this blog post would have been ‘Trumpy McTrumpFace Marches On. And On’. Now the title is more of a question than a statement of triumph. As Michael Bourne puts is: “In the months since Donald Trump’s presidential campaign has shifted from amusing diversion to cold political reality, the narrative favored by America’s political and media elite has been one of chickens coming home to roost.”

Apparently the main reason for Trump losing big in Wisconsin is that he continues to cause controversy: he regularly incites political violence by threatening to “beat the crap out of” protesters at his rallies, he is a serial liar, he is a rampant xenophobe, he is a KKK-level racist, he is a misogynist, he is still a birther, he repeatedly pledges to ban all Muslims (over 1.6 billion members of an entire religion) from entering America, and more recently he has made some bewilderingly flip-flop comments about woman’s issues, specifically around women being legally punished if they have an abortion.

Clay Bennett editorial cartoon

So is Trump finished? Andrew Buncombe of the Independent recently said that “as much as people may wish to get out their engraving tools for Mr Trump’s granite headstone, he is not dead. Far from it…It is going to be a long, hot and chaotic summer. And Donald J Trump is going to be at the very heart of it.”

Why Trump will be at the heart of this year’s political process is because, as Michael Tomasky has noted, “Each new outrage only confirms to his supporters that Trump is gleefully defying the establishment, and they love him for it.”

Just to provide some counter balance, E J Dionne Jr again of the Independent, said: “Americans would never choose as their president a clownish peddler of racial and religious stereotypes who made everything up as he went along was right from the start.” Let us all pray that he is right.

I am fully aware in the right-wing righteous eyes of Trumpy McTrumpFace that I, Beardy McBeardFace, would probably be seen as a loony-left-wing-ISIS-sympathising-abortion-loving-wall-hating-terrorist, simply because I do not 100% agree with Trump with heart and soul and body and mind, in everything he says and indeed implies. Because of this my non-American opinion does not really warrant any attention. Fair enough, so presented below are the views and opinions of others that I whole-heartedly agree with, opinions that are funnier than mine and that matter much more than mine. Enjoy!

PS This post follows on from a Trump related post I did earlier.

Clay Bennett editorial cartoon


Frankie Boyle berates Trump on TV and in the press…

One the Jonathon Ross show recently Frankie Boyle made the following comments:

I’m just horrified by Donald Trump. He’s sort of like a pumpkin having a nervous breakdown. He’s like a sort of corrupt tele-evangelist that Columbo would have as a baddie or something. But he’s really dangerous, I mean he’s like proto-fascist, almost. And Hillary Clinton isn’t much better. I mean, she’s like the establishment candidate. But if you’re in one of the countries that America is destroying around the world, that election must look like, you know, someone is driving a combine harvester towards you and there’s a chance that the wheel might be grabbed by a chimpanzee. There’s not really a good option in there. – Frankie Boyle, on The Jonathon Ross Show, 02 Apr 2016

And here is a selection of quotes from a brilliant article Boyle wrote for the Guardian a few days later:

It’s actually hard to find a clip of Donald Trump’s campaign that doesn’t look like a RoboCop insert…

The Republicans seem to be shocked that the result of decades of polarising rhetoric is a polarised society. The conservative establishment has spoken in a language of constant crisis, despite being ridiculously well served by the status quo, and it’s surprising how well the fear campaign has worked, considering that most of the country is on anti-anxiety medication. Conservatives have focused on false crises of international terror and immigration, little recognising that many voters have been equating that narrative with their own real crises of unemployment, debt and foreclosure. Donald Trump has simply cast himself as a solution. Trump is in many ways just saying what the other candidates would say on cocaine, but he’s also a unity candidate. His hope is to bring all of America together in their rejection of reality…

You can actually make your own Trump policies by going through the incinerator at the Daily Mail and picking through the dust for anything they thought might get them prosecuted. His position on climate change is “How can there be global warming when it’s still so cold in my soul?”…

For anyone who has ever asked why the US needs to address the issue of reparations for its history of slavery, Donald Trump is why. He is the living embodiment of America’s unresolved issues. “How on earth can America consider expelling people of a different faith?!” an appalled England asks of a country created by the people they expelled for having a different faith…

Trump seems to have the emotional range of a Power Rangers villain and the social skills of a teenage Minotaur. He looks like a pumpkin having a nervous breakdown, talks like the words are being fired out of his mouth by a tennis ball launcher and has the general manner of an arrogant televangelist suspected of murder by Columbo. His approach to public speaking? “If in doubt, switch to your internal monologue.” His core demographic? Possibly men whose holiday destinations would significantly overlap with a list of missing women. Trump is bringing out people who’ve never voted, people who felt they had no one to speak for them until now, people who throw microwaved beans at the television and people who go shopping in their pyjamas. And who knows, if Trump’s supporters are using their eight-fingered fists to make banners and red hats rather than drunkenly beating their kid into a coma that they won’t let a black doctor treat, maybe that’s a good thing. Trump knows that he appeals to people who are suspicious not just of political elites but everything those elites believe in, including rationality, and when confronted with anything empirical instinctively retreats into unverifiable anecdotes…

For America, and indeed the rest of the world, Clinton versus Trump will be like being on a bus being driven at high speed towards a cliff by a psychopath, where there’s a chance that a chimpanzee might grab control of the steering wheel. It’s not a question of whether this will make things better or worse, it’s more that the whole idea of “better” may be gradually ceasing to exist…


Vicente Fox, former president of Mexico, calls Trump a ‘false prophet’…

Trump has said Mexicans are the problem, calling us rapists and criminals. He thinks building the “Trump Wall” will right every wrong in the United States. Indeed, he’s built a huge mental wall around himself already, which doesn’t allow him to see the greatness of our people…Trump is surely a false prophet who will guide the great nation of the United States to the bottom of the ocean, all the way through the shores of ignorance, racism, hunger and despair. – Vicente Fox


To some Trump is political Prozac…

My wife made a good point, a rare occurrence I know. She said that Trump supporters must have been harbouring all this hatred for such a long time, hatred such as racism, sexism, misogyny, homophobia, anti-Semitism, and xenophobia. Now they have a leader who is openly expressing his own such hatred so publicly and without any sense of shame, his supporters somehow feel they can let all of their hatred out too. This can clearly be seen at Trump rallies with the shameful treatment of anyone who protests. At these rallies we have heard open remarks that border on incitement of hate crime.

Trump is their political Prozac, their official hatred valve that has now been turned up all the way to 11. However, as Michael Bourne scarily asks: “Where does all the white rage go when Donald Trump loses? They’re too angry to sit still. Too many to ignore. But too few to elect a president. Where do they go after Trump?…Where will all that anger, which has been slowly building among America’s white working class for half a century, go once it is left without a viable political outlet?”


Clay Bennett editorial cartoon


Matt Taibbi says Trump is the result of American culture being dumbed down through the ages…

We’re about to enter a dark period in the history of the American experiment. The Founding Fathers never imagined an electorate raised on Toddlers and Tiaras and Temptation Island. Remember, just a few decades ago, shows like Married With Children and Roseanne were satirical parodies. Now the audience can’t even handle that much irony. A lot of American culture is just dumb slobs cheering on other dumb slobs. It was inevitable, once we broke the seal with Bush, that our politics would become the same thing. Madison and Jefferson never foresaw this situation. They knew there was danger of demagoguery, but they never imagined presidential candidates exchanging “mine’s bigger than yours” jokes or doing “let’s laugh at the disabled” routines. There’s no map in the Constitution to tell us how to get out of where we’re going. All we can do now is hold on. – Matt Taibbi


Conor Lynch goes further to say “Trump is the pinnacle of American stupidity”…

Donald Trump is the pinnacle of American stupidity…Trump represents the culmination of Republican — and American — stupidity. For many voters, his ignorance of both foreign and domestic issues is offset by his bold and folksy rhetoric, along with his absolute confidence, which, as Bill Maher recently noted, “is perfect for the country that scores low in math and science but off the charts in self-esteem.” In this age of 24/7 entertainment, where even the news is seen as a form of escapism, his sophomoric antics are considered fun and amusing, while his vulgar and often inflammatory comments are regarded as rebellious by those who are fed up with perceived “political correctness.” – Conor Lynch


Boris Johnson says Trump “is playing the game of the terrorists”…

I think Donald Trump is clearly out of his mind if he thinks that’s a sensible way to proceed, you can’t ban people going to the United States in that way, or indeed to any country. And what he’s doing is playing the game of the terrorists and those who seek to divide us. That is exactly the kind of reaction they hope to produce. And I have to say that when Donald Trump says that there are parts of London that are ‘no go’ areas, I think he’s betraying a quite stupefying ignorance that makes him frankly unfit to hold the office of President of the United States…I would invite him to come and see the whole of London and take him round the city, except that I wouldn’t want to expose any Londoners to any unnecessary risk of meeting Donald Trump. – Boris Johnson


There is a cartoon Donald Trump and he is scarily life-like…

The Late Show host Stephen Colbert created a Cartoon Donald Trump, since the real one has declined to appear on his show:


Mitt Romney, the 2012 Republican presidential nominee, tears into Trump in a lengthy speech…

And let me put it very plainly. If we Republicans choose Donald Trump as our nominee, the prospects for a safe and prosperous future are greatly diminished…

But you say, wait, wait, wait, isn’t he a huge business success? Doesn’t he know what he’s talking about? No, he isn’t and no he doesn’t. (APPLAUSE) Look, his bankruptcies have crushed small businesses and the men and women who work for them. He inherited his business, he didn’t create it. And whatever happened to Trump Airlines? How about Trump University? And then there’s Trump Magazine and Trump Vodka and Trump Steaks and Trump Mortgage. A business genius he is not…

Mr. Trump’s bombast is already alarming the allies and fueling the enmity of our enemies. Insulting all Muslims will keep many of them from fully engaging with us in the urgent fight against ISIS, and for what purpose? Muslim terrorists would only have to lie about their religion to enter the country…

I’m far from the first to conclude that Donald Trump lacks the temperament to be president. After all, this is an individual who mocked a disabled reporter, who attributed a reporter’s questions to her menstrual cycle, who mocked a brilliant rival who happened to be a woman due to her appearance, who bragged about his marital affairs, and who laces his public speeches with vulgarity. Donald Trump says he admires Vladimir Putin, at the same time he has called George W. Bush a liar. That is a twisted example of evil trumping good. (APPLAUSE)… – Mitt Romney


Hillary Clinton says “Trump is running a cynical campaign of hate and fear”…

Donald Trump is running a cynical campaign of hate and fear, for one reason: to get votes. He’s encouraging violence and chaos to get votes. He is pitting Americans against each other to get votes…After stoking every fire he can think of, Trump encourages his supporters to beat up anybody who disagrees with him — literally punch them in the face — and then offers to pay their legal bills. – Hilary Clinton


To add to Matt Bellassai’s point, Trump also dodged the Vietnam draft…

Matt Bellassai tweeted the following after the recent terrorist attacks in Brussels:

Matt Twitter


John Oliver tears down his wall, brick by brick, fact by fact…

In 1987 in west Berlin the US president Ronald Reagan famously advised the Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev to “tear down this wall”, referring to the barrier which had divided East and West Berlin since 1961. Some 30 years later we have Trump, who is essentially Reagan on steroids and crack and more steroids, trying to get into the Whiter House by promising not to tear down walls, but instead to build the best wall ever built. Will this wall idea work? I’ll let John Oliver handle this one:

39 FRANKIE BOYLE QUOTES, MOST CONTROVERSIAL

One of my favourite comedians is the always brilliant and always controversial Frankie Boyle. The Scottish-born Boyle, who is a cross between Jon Stewart and Rab C Nesbit, is a multifaceted talent:

He is a stand-up comedian. I highly recommend any and all of Boyle’s stand-up, of which there is plenty available online.

He is a writer of three books, again strongly recommended as I hope to quote from these in a future blog.

He has written several articles for the Guardian, all of which I again highly recommend.

He is a TV personality, probably most famous for his many appearances on the BBC comedy quiz show Mock The Week, as well as his Channel 4 series Tramadol Nights. More recently (April 2016) he was a somewhat more polite guest on The Jonathon Ross Show (it is a good interview, if you can find it on YouTube).

He has quite a big following on Twitter.

Frankie Tweet 4

Frankie Tweet 2

Frankie Tweet 3

Frankie Tweet 1

Lastly, he is very controversial. Just one of many examples is from several years ago when Boyle got in trouble with the BBC for making disparaging remarks about Israel.

Anyways, below are some of my favourite Frankie Boyle quotes. Enjoy!


  1. An ISIS caliphate is essentially the Vatican but with less sex.
  2. Apparently the Saudi Arabian Paralympic team is mainly thieves.
  3. BBC’s coverage of Gaza is as shameful as anything it has ever done. Except Mrs Brown’s Boys. Actually, there’s a bunch of stuff. Forget it.
  4. Boyle’s problem, if it is a problem, is that life, or society, is too bland for him. He doesn’t really admire anyone on the mainstream comedy circuit, believing comedy has become a career, “There’s a lot of banality about”, and, despite his need to promote his autobiography, he rages against the fact that everything has become so PR-driven. “Everything is so mediated,” he says, and swings into an amusing story about a contribution he was asked to make to The Culture Show. “They wanted 10 celebrity inserts about ‘what is culture’. And my thing was culture is a war of ideas. People such as stand-ups and artists and alternative thinkers are on one side and you’re fighting with pea shooters against these giant summer blockbusters that are designed to have this numbing ideology. They just looked at me and said, ‘What? We really can’t show that at all.’ So I said what do you want, and they said, ‘We had Patsy Kensit in today and that was good.’ She said, ‘Culture is buying my daughter an ice-cream at the Natural History Museum.’ So that’s what you’re up against. That’s the level of banality that’s desired.” [From an interview with the Independent]
  5. Bye Afghanistan. Seems like we just couldn’t murder enough of you to bring peace, couldn’t drop enough explosives to bring stability. Sorry.
  6. Football is just distraction, distract you from the real world, distract you from the war. They should replace football with just a guy bringing out a big bunch of keys and going “Look at the shiny shiny!”
  7. France be like “I support free speech, free expression. Unless you wear a veil. I CAN’T SEE HER NOSE!! ARREST HER! I CAN’T SEE HER NOSE!!”
  8. Glasgow is a very negative place. If Kanye was born in Glasgow he would have been called No You Cannae.
  9. Glasgow, a place where people think Hepatitis B is a vitamin.
  10. [Referring to the appearance of BNP leader Nick Griffin on Question Time in Oct 2009] I don’t give a shit about the Nick Griffin stuff. I watched it, and I just thought ‘this is boring’. He’s just a stress ball for people who really caused the problem. Jack Straw is sitting there. You’ve got essentially a racist government with a racist immigration policy and you’ve got a scarecrow to point at and say: ‘Here’s the racist, ooooh, you terrible racist.’
  11. I don’t read newspapers anymore. I just lie to myself and cut out the middleman.
  12. I think we’re heading for a two state solution. Israel as a solid, Palestine vaporised into a gas.
  13. I think what Scotland needs to do now is put England on the back foot, do something that the English won’t expect, and the last thing that they expect is for us to become an Islamic caliphate. IS. Independent Scotland. Of course, we’ll need to learn how to treat women slightly better, but we can change.
  14. I’m just horrified by Donald Trump. He’s sort of like a pumpkin having a nervous breakdown. He’s like a sort of corrupt tele-evangelist that Columbo would have as a baddie or something. But he’s really dangerous, I mean he’s like proto-fascist, almost. And Hillary Clinton isn’t much better. I mean, she’s like the establishment candidate. But if you’re in one of the countries that America is destroying around the world, that election must look like, you know, someone is driving a combine harvester towards you and there’s a chance that the wheel might be grabbed by a chimpanzee. There’s not really a good option in there.
  15. I’m very old now and I’ve got a body like a dropped lasagne. Women now look at my naked body in the same fearful way that pensioners look at snow.
  16. If you get offended by any jokes tonight, by the way, feel free to Tweet your outrage on a mobile phone made by a ten year old in China.
  17. [Referring to the 2007 Glasgow International Airport terrorist attack] I’m from Glasgow. If I had to explain Glasgow to you, I’d say that if I had to pick a city in the world where I could depend on a member of the public to punch a man who was on fire. To punch a flaming man to the ground! We should get a photo of that blown up and use it as the welcome sign at Scottish airports. And underneath we should have the words “Scotland welcomes careful drivers.” I mean the naivety of Al Qaida trying to bring religious war to Glasgow. We’re four hundred years ahead of you guys. You’ve not even got a football team. There’s a fallacy, isn’t there, that that baggage handler prevented hundreds of people from being horribly burnt. These were Scottish people flying to Spain!
  18. In Scotland we have mixed feeling about global warming, because we will get to sit on the mountains and watch the English drown.
  19. Israel say civilians are being killed because they’re living near terrorists and, to be fair, they are living stupidly close to Israel.
  20. It’s worth remembering that in the press, ‘public opinion’ is often used interchangeably with ‘media opinion’, as if the public was somehow much the same as a group of radically rightwing billionaire sociopaths.
  21. It’s important for Britain to defend itself by bombing IS, in the same way you defend yourself from a wasps’ nest by hitting it with a stick.
  22. It’s not politically correct to talk about women who wear veils. I don’t care if they wear a veil or not. It’s when you see them in London, taking photos of each other as tourists. What’s the point? “Could you take that one again? I blinked.”
  23. I’ve been studying Israeli army martial arts. I now know 16 ways to kick a Palestinian woman in the back. People think that the Middle East is very complex but I have an analogy that sums it up quite well. If you imagine that Palestine is a big cake, well…that cake is being punched to pieces by a very angry Jew.
  24. Labour say vote SNP get Tories, Tories say vote Labour get SNP. AT LEAST PRETEND THAT THE BULLSHIT SYSTEM YOU WANT US TO ENGAGE WITH WORKS.
  25. Maybe it’s time to ask whether Prince Andrew is a man with sufficient moral integrity to travel the globe promoting UK weaponry to tyrants.
  26. Maybe there was a time when the United States gave the rest of the world a safe word and we’ve simply forgotten it.
  27. Money is a belief system, it only works so long as we have confidence in it. Which is why everybody who works for a bank is on cocaine.
  28. On balance, I think the only reason our political elite haven’t slaughtered us in camps is they need us to produce children for them to fuck.
  29. One day religions will forget about their differences and focus on the things that unite them, like their hatred of women and homosexuals.
  30. Our new rulers will be corporations. Looking down at Britain from business class, all the party conferences – and the protests marching up and down outside them – will look like little cargo cults. We will be allowed to keep our political rituals because they have an entertainment value, and because somebody needs to give speeches and answer questions. That’s not something our new rulers will be doing. They will be glimpsed only occasionally, stepping briskly into waiting cars. Our elected officials will soon fill a function much like the one the media fills now, as mere agents of a greater power. With no other role to play, our politicians will continue doing what they know: waving to the cameras, forcing a smile, hoping to keep us paying attention to their strange, dull ceremonies.
  31. [Football commentary] Overpaid…overpaid knocks it on to overrated…overrated…on to possible rapist…possible rapist knocks it forward to closet gay…closet gay…GOAL!
  32. People say that Steve Jobs died too soon but I think it was a fitting metaphor for his companies attitude to battery life.
  33. Some attack benefits & immigration but I think it’s worth remembering IT WAS THE BANKS. THEY TOOK ALL THE MONEY. IT WAS ON THE FUCKING NEWS.
  34. The U.S attacking Islam is like a serial killer being annoyed when the people locked in his basement start praying.
  35. Watched American Sniper. Sort of Star Wars from the point of view of the Stormtroopers.
  36. We are starting to spend more time online and less being alive. Our faces feel odd when we take our masks off. We live in a culture built on debt, so we are encouraged to have no self control. Consumer culture needs us to be impulsive, while our political culture fears that we will ever develop discipline.
  37. We want Paris to be remembered in 1,000 years and we don’t remember the names of the victims 10 minutes after reading them – we don’t remember Amine Ibnolmobarak, a Moroccan émigré who was designing an architectural solution to the 2,000 deaths at Mecca; we don’t remember Elsa Delplace and her mother Patricia San Martin, who died shielding Delplace’s young son from bullets. We remember that the female terrorist was blond and one had no pants on. We remember that the terrorists came in with refugees even though they don’t seem to have done, especially since they were all French or Belgian. We expect our descendants to remember Daft Punk and we don’t even remember that invading Iraq caused the birth and rise of Isis. And we won’t remember any of this once the new series of Britain’s Got Talent starts.
  38. We’ve got Barack Obama as president. Incredible when you consider he has the worst name you could have in American politics. Obama…halfway between “Osama” and “a bomber”. He might as well be called Muslim O’Gun–Bomb.
  39. Why do paedophiles always have beards and glasses? What is it about that look that children find so sexy?