Let’s be clear about this:
If you oppose halal certification because it is an affront to your ‘faith’ you are a racist bigot.
If you are a Muslim male and you choose to be sexist and a misogynist because of your ‘faith’ then that is to be endorsed and encouraged in our public schools and universities.
At least three of the nation’s leading universities are advising students to respect Muslims on campus by acknowledging followers of Islam are not permitted to shake hands with the opposite sex.
The information, which is designed to foster a greater understanding of “Muslim identities’’, is provided online for students at Adelaide’s Flinders University, Perth’s Curtin University and the University of Western Australia.
The Australian revealed earlier this week a public school in Sydney’s west — Hurstville Boys Campus of Georges River College — had adopted an “agreed protocol’’ endorsed by the NSW Education Department permitting Muslim male students to decline to shake hands with females because of their faith. The practice has been denounced by many senior Islamic figures.
- Hugh Fitzgerald: “Shaking Hands is an Important Part of Our Culture”
- Hugh Fitzgerald: Switzerland: What’s in a Handshake? – Jihad Watch
- Muslim schoolboys allowed to refuse women’s handshakes
Universities across Australia provide students with cultural awareness information including understanding that “shaking hands or touching members of the opposite sex who are not family is not permitted’’ and greeting Muslims with “Merry Christmas” or “Happy Easter’’ is not appropriate.
National Union of Students national ethno-cultural officer Lorena White said “tertiary institutions should accommodate Muslim students who cannot shake hands with females”, adding that “to force any student to engage in actions that do not comply with their faith while no real harm is being done by doing so is discriminatory and unacceptable’’.
“The harm that would be caused for a male student forced into a handshake can be damaging to their sense of self, identity and can consequence to a choice between assimilation or isolation. The consequence of having your handshake rejected is quite insignificant in contrast, and even more so when compared to the challenges and discriminations facing women today.’’
A Western Sydney University spokesman said the institution did not have a formal process or protocol for hand shaking and “during university graduation ceremonies, it is up to an individual as to whether they would like to shake hands upon receiving their award’’.
“Western Sydney University embraces diversity and promotes a culture of inclusiveness, and as such respects that there may be a range of reasons why some students elect not to shake hands,’’ the spokesman said.
A Flinders University spokesman and a University of Western Australia spokeswoman said their institutions also did not have a formal handshake protocol.
The leader of the Australian Conservatives, Cory Bernardi, said handshake bans continued “the long march of creeping sharia through our institutions, such as academia, universities and even schools, warping our children’s minds to accept Dark Ages attitudes towards women’’.
“Self-styled women’s advocates remain silent on such misogyny because it is in Islam, not their preferred alternate religious targets,’’ he said.
Queensland Coalition MP George Christensen described it as unAustralian and sexist, while One Nation’s Malcolm Roberts decried the ban as “very demeaning towards women’’.
Federal Education Minister Simon Birmingham said: “While universities are autonomous institutions we expect them to be accountable to their communities, students and the taxpayers who fund them and to reflect community expectations and standards.”