The musings of a Mancunian sport loving Muslimah

The role of Pakistani parents…

….in getting a handle on these barbaric groomers.’

So, for the second time in as many years, we are reading of court cases on the vile and inhumane treatment of young impressionable and clearly vulnerable teenage girls, whereby they are being groomed for sex by young and middle aged men.

Now, I know this has gone on for years in various parts of the world unreported, including in this country, and for all I know, will continue to happen.  However, often when your own ‘community’ is under the microscope on such matters you pay more attention and are even more outraged as you supposedly share similarities with these people.  ‘Supposedly,’ being the operative word.

In November 2010, a gang of men from Derby were jailed for the sexual exploitation of young white girls.  The shock factor and added outraged here for me was that these men were Asian men of Pakistani background.  Second generation Pakistanis born and bred in this country.

‘Sûrah al An’am 6.151:
“Do not take any human being’s life, (the life) which God has declared to be sacred –

otherwise than in (the pursuit of) justice: this has He enjoined upon you so that you might use your reason.”

Now, let’s turn the clock back some forty years.  Like many, my father came to this country in view of a better life for himself and his family.  Whether he had ever thought that in 40 years time he would’ve set up home here and his children were to live here, is an entirely different matter.  I’ve heard these stories first hand, where my father, along with millions others, worked all the hours that God has sent in order to make ends meet.  Being paid pennies, in comparison to the standards in place today, often working two jobs therefore 20 hour days.  And why did they do this?  Not just for the money, far from it.  They struggled in this manner to IMPROVE their standard of living, to IMPROVE life chances for their yet unborn children and out of sheer devotion to their families so that future generations wouldn’t have the same struggles.

They wanted their children to have the life chances that they never got.  They wanted them to have an education, live a life of easier means, whilst also instilling in them the ethos of hard work, dedication and being citizens of the world with excellent morals.  I was brought up in such a household, and my assumption from a relatively young age was that this was true of others too.

The older I get, the more I feel at loss with the world, and the people I am supposedly associated with and a part of.  Currently ongoing at Liverpool Crown Court is a grooming case that took place in the textile towns of Rochdale and Oldham.  Historically, the Asian migrants which came to these towns did so for the booming cotton industry, there were a plethora of job opportunities along with a ‘good’ wage.  The families that set up homes here were fathers who worked tirelessly.  I cannot even begin to stress or explain the life that they lead.  Mainly because you’d think I was making it up, so it would be much better coming first hand from them. If you ever get a chance, speak to these fathers who came to England from places like Pakistan, India and Bangladesh and the struggles they faced. (This is not to say those from other countries didn’t too, they did, my focus is on South East Asians as this is my background and the background of these sub-human scum, groomers.)

Yet, move forward 40 years and you begin to wonder whether or not we really have moved forward.  Why is it that the hard working ethic that these fathers had, hasn’t been passed down to these men.

Firstly, let me make absolutely clear that these groomers are a MINORITY, they are not in any way shape or from representative of the male Pakistani psyche, however, unfortunately they are now in the media spotlight, consequently so are British Pakistani’s, therefore we have an onus to discuss this and find a resolution.

Speak to these fathers who migrated to the country, and ask them of the life they envisaged for their children, they may tell you different things, and the journeys may differ, however the dreams and analogies will remain the same.  The anticipation will be equal too.

Now, some of you may be wondering why I haven’t spoken about mothers and keep mentioning fathers, as if I’ve filled some stereo type whereby women are meaningless and not a part of the jigsaw, far from it.  I cannot even begin to stress the important role that mothers play, and will mention this shortly.

So, we have an issue on our hands. Second generation Pakistani men, born and bred in this country, feel it is okay to groom and sexually assault young teenage white girls. This is the pattern that is emerging, it is Pakistani men and white girls.  The absolute irony of it all is, these are the same men who would probably tell you that they’d ‘break your legs’ if they ever saw you looking at their sisters or daughters.  I mean, are they completely out of it and insane?

In the last address to his community, the Prophet (saw) said:

“Your lives and properties are forbidden to one another till you meet your Lord on the Day of Resurrection… Regard the life and property of every Muslim as a sacred trust… Hurt no one so that no one may hurt you… You will neither inflict nor suffer any inequity.”

The Prophet (saw) did not prohibit only the unlawful encroachment of one another’s life and property, but also honor and respect.

And this is where the problem lies.  This is where the issue is, and for me is a simple case of (not simple, but you know what I mean), nature v nurture.  When parents give up and refuse to become responsible for their children allowing society and their friends to raise them, these are the issues we have.  When Pakistani parents create a divide in their own homes between the expectations placed on their daughters and those placed on their sons, this is the problem we have.

Many will tell you that the solution to this is to get people who know these crimes are being committed to report them.  But, that is short term, and we know from the psyche of humans, that out of fear and some pre-historic belief of ‘allegiance’ they simply wont ‘grass them up.’

The solution therefore lies in attacking the root cause, it is these men.  They are the problem.  And education on such matters starts from the home. This is something I will write about later, which angers me endlessly, but the clash of religion and culture is creating such vultures.  Parents need to start educating their children, or even young teenagers of the consequences of their actions and life choices that they make.

I’m not saying that the consequence that the parents need to focus on is the ‘shame’ that such crimes bring on the family, but the consequences and life long repercussions on the lives of these young girls.  How, in which world, and in which mind set, is it okay to give drugs and alcohol to young girls in return for sex.  If you’re a male and have needs, the answer to the solution isn’t rape, it never was and it never is.  The fact some of these men were married and had children of their own repulses me.

The Prophet Muhammad (saw) said:

The best among you is the one who is the best towards his wife – Muslim

Obviously, everyone will have an opinion on this, some will say ‘send them back where they came from,’ which is difficult to do given these men were born and bred here, some will stand for the death penalty and others will probably read it as news and shrug and move on.

By resolving the relationship that boys have with their parents, by encouraging education, by not turning a blind eye, by checking on the friendship groups that your sons keep, by checking on where their finances are going, by checking on what time they leave the home and when they return, by checking on how they treat the women around you, and this’ll be eye opening, you will begin to realise that there is something wrong going on in front of your very eyes.  You will realise that there is an issue building, and possibly, even be able to handle it before it gets totally out of control.  This is probably me with my head in the clouds and assuming that in some world this can happen, but I genuinely believe it can.  When these young Pakistani men treat women with their own household with the respect that they deserve, when they are taught on the value of the life of a female in the religion they claim to follow, when they respect themselves and truly follow God, such barbaric ills of society will be eradicated.

In the assumption that majority of Pakistani parents in this country are Muslim too, then they have a responsibility to create such an ethos in their homes. Bring their children towards Islam and it’s teachings, where Islam is taught correctly, with love and consideration, then people will automatically do all they can not to commit such crimes which are obviously displeasing to Allah. The problem we have is that far too many parents emphasise on culture and create an Islam of ‘not,’ telling children what they can’t do, rather than what they can. Love your religion and love your children, and they will both intertwine.

There is a massive onus and responsibility on the local masjids.  There simply isn’t enough of an outlet for young teenagers, both male and female.  So they get into the wrong gangs, they are attracted to people who show ‘respect’ to them and bring them into their circles.  The local mosque I attend, without bias, is probably one of the best I know.  Regular circles are in place after school and in the evenings, and on weekends, to get the youth of the streets and in to something positive.  There’ll be workshops, pool tables, games consoles and whatever else.  We need to direct their energy in a positive manner and handle this issue before it becomes even more widespread.

This brings me back to mothers.  I’ve seen some vile and awful treatment of mothers, which leaves me perplexed and afraid.  You don’t need to go far, have a look around Twitter, have a look at the way people spoke about their mothers.  I’m not saying that all mothers are perfect, we are all human at the end of the day, therefore mothers have a responsibility to bring their children up at a young age and mould them into citizens of the world that they’d be proud of.  This is why Islam stresses the importance of education for females.  This is why Islam declares that heaven lies at the feet of a mother.  When men treat their mothers, wives, daughters and sisters with respect, they will do so equally outside of the world.

It seems I’ve done something where I’ve laid blame on everyone else but them.  That isn’t true.  The thing is, I can’t even begin to understand the psychology or psyche of these men therefore find it difficult to break down or explain their actions without swearing.  These aspects I’ve mentioned might not be true, but it is a build up to all of this.  There is a need for greater awareness and show of respect towards the opposite gender and races.  People, parents of such men especially, need to stop digging their heads in the sand and take responsibility.  Yes, these men are now adults and are therefore responsible for their actions, but if you’ve been brought up in an environment where you’ve not been taught right from wrong, where you’ve never had to answer to anyone and done as you’ve pleased, then this needs to be tackled.

This notion that these men who commit such crimes hold, that ‘it’s okay, it’s a white girl and not one of ours’ is beyond comprehension.  Are you INSANE?!  She is someone’s sister, someone’s daughter or a friend too.  She has dignity, she has self respect and she deserves to be treated as such.

I found it amusing that prior to the trial these men were placed on oath and swore by the Qur’an.   As if that’s going to make a difference,  these people have no God in their lives, there is no fear, so swearing on a book, might as well be any old book.  They’ve committed such a heinous crime for which they show no remorse but might tell the truth because they’ve sworn on what to them is just a ‘book’?

I haven’t even begun to explain how big a role ‘community,’ ‘honour,’ ‘respect’ and ‘shame’ play in the Pakistani community, and I don’t think this is the place to either.  Their actions will have an everlasting effect, firstly on the young girls that they violated, how will life ever be normal for them?  And, then on their families and themselves.  Not forgetting giving added fuel to the likes of the EDL and BNP.

My prayers and thoughts will be with these young girls who’ve had their youthfulness taken from them in the most brutal of circumstances.  I honestly wish that their physical and mental scars don’t leave an everlasting mark and they’re able to progress into women of the world.

As for the men, they should be made an example of.  Imprisoned for life.  They need to realise the consequences of their actions, I doubt they’ll ever show genuine remorse.  And, for me, time in prison isn’t real justice.  And this is where my belief in the afterlife gives me some solace, insha’Allah, they will be Judged accordingly and real justice will be served.

‘Sûrah an Nâs 4.119
‘O you who believe! You are forbidden to inherit women against their will…’

Sûrah an Nûr 24.33
‘… And do not, in order to gain some of the fleeting pleasures of this worldly life, coerce your slave women into whoredom if they are desirous of marriage, and if anyone should coerce them, then, verily, after they have been compelled (to submit in their helplessness), God will be much forgiving, a dispenser of grace (to them).

During the time of the Prophet (saw) punishment was inflicted on the rapist on the solitary evidence of the woman who was raped by him. Wa’il ibn Hujr reports of an incident when a woman was raped. Later, when some people came by, she identified and accused the man of raping her. They seized him and brought him to Allah’s messenger, who said to the woman, “Go away, for Allâh has forgiven you,” but of the man who had raped her, he said, “Stone him to death.” (Tirmidhi and Abu Dawud)

According to Islam, all aspects of life, ie: the physical, mental, emotional and spiritual, are sacred and must be respected. No gender or relationship has been given the power or right to hurt or harm the other. Domestic violence, rape and incest are all violent and criminal abuses that are outside the bounds of what is permitted in Islam and there is absolutely no justification for it whatsoever.

Note:  This may be edited and updated, where and when necessary.  Please note, this is entirely an opinion only.  I accept and understand that people’s opinions on such ‘sensitive’ issues will differ.

5 responses to “The role of Pakistani parents…

  1. Hauwa February 22, 2012 at 3:56 pm

    Very well-written! This is excellent. You should post it on Facebook as well.

  2. adeela February 24, 2012 at 12:39 am

    Mashallah very well written I think you have hit the nail on the head with the bit about education. Muslim youth in Britain are not given the Islamic education they need by their families, most children go to the masjid but never learn to understand the Quran or its message. At the same time they fall behind in mainstream society. Not that this can help understand the evil that these awful men committed … May Allah guide and help us all

  3. mcabsent February 24, 2012 at 1:13 am

    Y’know I don’t think it’s the parents that can control this.

    What we have here is predatory men that go looking for easy targets. Sometimes they don’t consider it as rape, they see their insensitivity as something the girls may want. There’s no excuse for what they do, however it’s not always a racial thing. They will victimise Asian girls as well, only it’s more difficult for Asian girls to come forward due to the potential of losing honour, the will to leave it behind them and get on with their lives.

    No level of parenting can change this, remember most of these men were at least 20. They drive around looking for girls, seduce them with alcohol or drugs then believe they have ownership over them. They need to find their kicks from somewhere else, somewhere where their are no victims.

    It’s sad how these girls feel the need to allow themselves to get into cars with strangers, we need to create more things for kids those age to do, especially since their parents are allowing them the freedom to be on the streets. Sitting at home watching monotonous tv drama’s is usually the other option, we need more community events and theatre groups, perhaps an outlet to express their creativity?

    Both victim and offender are sadly looking like the lost generation.

    • SportyMuslimah February 25, 2012 at 10:45 am

      I see what you’re saying to an extent, but disagree.

      These Pakistani men in this current case were Muslims, if they were brought up nd taught the real value and teachings of Islam in a loving and respectful manner, then such things wouldn’t occur.

      They would fear the consequences of their actions and what is to come in the afterlife too.

      If they were taught the value of a woman and saw these values, then these things wouldn’t happen.

      I’m not saying only the parents are to blame, far from it. The men must take responsibility and complete their punishment. I do believe though that better parenting and understanding of the religion they claim to follow would’ve prevented this.

      • mcabsent February 25, 2012 at 8:40 pm

        I completely agree with your viewpoint, I guess the lack of Muslim involvement during the riots whilst Ramadan is evident that religion and active participation can provide/enforce a moral compass.

        I guess my perception in my previous post is knowing people that grew up with a religious background and then they left it behind, neglecting anything taught and followed ill desires.

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