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Good points made, so must presume that these are not the words or scribblings of Warsi herself, but a speech written by "Head Office" to ensure that the right message gets disseminated.

Which begs the question, why bother with the messenger.

"Which begs the question, why bother with the messenger."

because she is capable of winning people over, unlike the wingnuts you get posting here

It is disappointing that the first comment resorts to bashing Sayeeda Warsi. Too many people have made up their minds about her and refuse to deviate from that prejudged opinion. I have yet to hear anything that she has said that is at all problematic, well unless you read it through the prism of the media who have a curious knack of deciding for her what she intended to mean.

Why does George Hinton presume that those "are not the words or scribblings of Warsi herself, but a speech written by 'Head Office' to ensure that the right message gets disseminated"?

What evidence does he have to indicate that?

Perhaps we should move off George Hinton's unsubstantiated remark and focus on what Baroness Warsi actually said!?

"I hope that as Muslims and as Parliamentarians in a democracy..."

Slightly stretching her 'credibility' there, Sayeeda, isn't she? Or hasn't anybody told her yet that she's an unelected peer?

I have read Baroness Warsi's speech and although she makes some good points I feel she appears not to recognise some fundamentals. For example she says:
She is "pleased that the Conservative Party is working hard to engage with minority communities".
Why no comment on the even more important need to engage with the majority community at the same time. Without doubt the Conservative Party is failing on this latter point, especially on these community issues.
Further, does Baroness Warsi appreciate the vast changes to our towns which excessively high levels of immigration have caused and the problems which have resulted, with none of the three main parties being willing to articulate these? Branding people in the host population who have taken their votes elsewhere as 'extremists' will solve no problems. These people are not extremists, they are worried and even scared at what is happening.
I would like Baroness Warsi include this perspective in her comments.
There is so much humbug in the politics of race relations and immigration that the only people whom the politicians are likely to listen to are those from ethnic minorities, who cannot be called 'racist' so easily.

Machiavelli's Understudy - The House of Lords was still a House of Parliament the last time I looked so she is a Parliamentarian. Heeding the Editor's advice this is a very substantial speech which identifies the issues and even goes as far as to suggest that you will not eradicate extremism in total but that you can make it a marginal concern that is less credible within the communities they feed off of. I think also she is 100% right about religions and compatibility with democracy. I look forward to hearing some fleshed out solutions to the issues she has raised.

"But there are ideas we get here in Britain which are just as wrong. Take forced marriages. Islam is unambiguous in its condemnation of forced marriage – it’s not a religious requirement, it’s a cultural outrage and Muslims reject it."

This is primarily a problem for the Pakistani muslims and indian Sikhs as well as some african cultures - its not specifice to one religion and implying it is shows a lack of understanding of the issue.

Sayeeda is a Parliamentarian. She's a working peer and sits in the Lords as a member of the Shadow Cabinet. Of course all the most important offices are for the Commons, but both parties have junior frontbenchers in the Upper House. We do have a bicameral Parliament.

Her speech sounds encouraging.

Bradford Lad, one of the difficulties faced by earnest politicians of whatever racial or religious background is the balance they have to tread in order to gain support from where they emanate to where they are looking towards. In some cases that may constitute dishonesty of conscience, but it seems to be the necessity.

If you are actually from Bradford, you will have heard how decent Asian folks who seek mainstream acceptance are castigated as coconuts.

It is difficult to win, and win all the time.

It was not centrally office written because I saw her drafting parts of it last night at a dinner she hosted for East Ham Conservatives and what an absolute delight she was to see and hear. They scored a coup in getting her last night

Clearly some posters here have made their minds up about Warsi, nothing she says will be enough. What a shame.

"But engagement doesn't mean partnership. This Government clearly believes in partnership with national organisations that claim to represent communities. This is wrong"

This is an application of Conservatism.

However, I would make the point that by suggesting the "national representatives" are not wholly the abitrators of what is required for community relations Sayeeda and the Conservative party can expect BBC programmes attacking them with plenty of air space for "national representatives".

I suspect that some of the childish nonsense attacking Sayeeda is written by such people. They want to keep their jobs.

Oh! I was so enojying Sayeeda's comments, until the end....the teaching of 'English' history, is perhaps a freudian slip...we need to promote and encourage Britishness, which is much more compatable with our ethnic minorities as it does not have a racial core....Britain symbolises the coming together of different groups and people into one diverse nation greatly benefiting from each other...So please, let us teach proper 'British' history, and a better understanding of the multiethnic dimension within our nation

A very good speech. I do sense that Warsi is something of a populist, which does annoy me sometimes, but she made very good points here. She's also a credit to our party with regards to her involvement in the teddy bear case.

A very good speech. I do sense that Warsi is something of a populist, which does annoy me sometimes

Populist? I've never really understood this line of criticism against anyone, really. Happening to be where the majority of the people are cannot always be a bad thing in a representative democracy, surely?!

No actually 'Blueboy' we NEED English history, ON WHICH TO BASE British multi-ethnic history. The fact that there has been a proposal for a History Museum, reported in either yesterday's or today's newspapers, - an English History Museum, which would seem to show that the need for an English History Museum - as they have a German History Museum, apparently, in Berlin.

"pleased that the Conservative Party is working hard to engage with minority communities".

I strongly disagree with this. I am conservative and a Tamil. The Conservative has completely ignored my community. I have written to so many MPs and part officials only to be ignored.

How can you say that the party is working hard to engage with all communities.

I do understand that the party is working really hard to engage with the Muslim community and certainly not with all communities.

It is churlish and uncharitable not be proud of Baroness Warsi, but hopefully that's the nature of politics rather than a character judgement of Sayeeda. And this discussion thread is more positive than previous ones on Sayeeda's performance.

Congratulations on your speech on social cohesion and thank you for your help in Gillian Gibbons' ordeal, Sayeeda!

This IS a very good speech - indeeed demonstrating why Sayeeda Warsi is in the Shadow Cabinet. Her points about the self appointed community leaders for instance are evidently true, need to be said and because they are being said by a Muslim woman will be read by a much wider audience than from AN Other.

I suspect that over time Sayeeda will become very popular within the party. The Sayeeda bashing that goes on is unedifying and will make all good Tories (along with her plainly sensible views as demonstrated in this speech) rally round her.

Typo ommission in last posting "...helping end Gillian Gibbons' ordeal"

omission! (sorry for mistakes; must go to bed after being on overnight police duties yesterday!)

I know Sayeeda, Mr. Hinton, and I do assure you that she is more than capable of writing her OWN speech. A successful lawyer specialising in the criminal side of law, setting up her own practice - whats the matter with you? - Jealous?

This is an excellent speech because it is tactically astute as well as politically astute.

Imagine the hand-wringing of the liberal-left if a WASP Tory MP or Lord had made these comments? The R word would have been alluded to if not actually said and we would be back in another bout of Tories against the minorities.

I also know Sayeeda having worked with her on the Cities TaskForce and she is absolutely dead set against those who want to promologate intolerance behind the veil - pardon the pun - of their faith.

Those who support the extremist interpretation of their faith are homophobic, racist, sexist and barbaric to animals. We should have the courage to say so and Sayeeda deserves credit for setting an example.

I read the speech - all Motherhood and Apple Pie and a touch of anti- americanism thrown in. The issue is simply 'When in Rome - fit in' As a pushy young employee I always remember being told by my boss "You will fit in with our methods young man - we will not fit in with yours !" It is a Muslim problem - no other incoming culture demands as much accomodation.

I congratulate Sayeeda on a well thought out and brave speech and yes, Annabel I agree with you although I don't know Sayeeda - I am quite sure she wrote it herself!

A very thoughtful and sensible speech. An asset to the party.

Richard - 20:54. There is a difference between "Populist" and "Popular". There is nothing about Populism that says it has to appeal to a majority of the country, however much its applicants may try to claim that status.

It is a very Cameroon-esque speech. All very fluffy and Im sure Central Office would have been heavily involved given the audience. It seems to me that the speech is supposed to balance the two sides here and in some parts it does give a confused message, for example "tolerance means learning to live with people and opinions you don’t like – but for tolerance to work, there must be real sensitivity to how different groups see the world, and to how we use language".

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