But Surely –

Let’s celebrate, shall we? Oh yes, do let’s. Let’s celebrate diversity, and plurality, and variety, and mulitpicity, and multitudinity, and difference, and variosity, and culture. Let’s celebrate culture. Here, have some confetti. Let’s party.

A national festival to promote Muslim culture which is being partly funded by the government has refused to stage an event designed to highlight the lives and experiences of gays and lesbians…Promotional publicity states that the festival will feature the “diversity and plurality” of Muslim cultures, but gay Muslims say they have been refused permission to present an event.

Well of course they have. They’re not plural, you see. They’re not diverse. They don’t fit in, they don’t match up, they don’t belong. How can anyone celebrate diversity with them when they’re so different, and wrong? I ask you.

In her letter to Mr Saeed [Muslim affairs spokesman for Outrage! – OB], the festival’s director, Isabel Carlisle, said: “We have sought to go beyond sectarian, ethnic or other group divisions so we do not enquire into the sexual orientation, gender or ethnicity of the artists … equally, at this difficult time for Muslims living in this country we are not prepared to present works that will give offence to significant numbers.”

Okay wait wait wait – nobody say anything for a minute. Nobody talk. I have to think really hard. Wait. Okay – we have to go beyond sectarian, ethnic or other group divisions, so that we can have a festival to celebrate Muslim culture – which is not sectarian, or ethnic, or group division-y. Okay – how is it not sectarian, exactly? I get how it’s not ethnic, because I’m always saying that, it’s everyone else who keeps wanting to pretend ‘Muslim’ is like a racial or ethnic term, which makes zero sense – I get that, but how is it not sectarian? And how is it not group divisiony? Isn’t group division the point? If it weren’t the point, wouldn’t this festival just be a festival of culture? So – what does Carlisle mean?

Nothing, is my guess. Not a damn thing. She just wants to say something more or less at random to get Mr Saeed to go away, and allow the festival to carry right on saying No to Muslim gay culture. So she says cats are dogs and spots are stripes.

Ms Carlisle told the Guardian: “The festival is non-ideological and non-political and non-sectarian … we don’t want to be subverted by any other agenda and that is principally why we turned Mr Saeed down.”

Right, because Carlisle and whatever ‘we’ she is speaking for already have their agenda, so they don’t want to be subverted by any other brand new different one. Their agenda is – erm – to celebrate diversity and plurality – erm, erm, erm – up to a point. Only up to a point, mind. More than that would be an agenda, and we don’t want that. Only up to a very sharp point, and not an inch farther.

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