The coverage given to the speech and interview that Rowen Williams gave on Thursday has been unprecendented across the media and especially in the papers.
If you listen to the interview and read the transcripts of the speech,he certainly doesn't advocate bringing full blown sharia law into the country.He recognised that the nature of sharia in some Islamic countries is not what he is talking about,speaking specifically that the law relating to women would not be appropriate.
He also says that any system would have to give the right of appeal,and that he is talking about the civil law with regard to divorce.
What certain parts of the media has read into the interview is that he wants to bring a parallel system into the country,that Muslims woyld be above the rule of British law and we would soon be subjected to viewings of stoning and floggings on our streets.
The usual supects have led the way,headlines in the Sun along the lines of Bash the Bish ,the Express reporting that sharia is alreadt with us,linking it to terrorism,
These have all fuelled what has turned into outright Islamaphobia.Even the qualities have jumped on the bangwagon and this morning's stories such as the Sunday Times,Minister warns of ‘inbred’ Muslims and the Independent's A question of honour on thess papers front pages only add more fuel to the fire.
I am also sure that it is more than mere coincidence that the Sunday Express chooses to lead with SUICIDE BOMBER, 12, AT UK SCHOOL and could even point a finger at the Observer which tells us Top judges in key ruling on sharia marriage
So what is the solution.It was interesting watching Amanda Platell and Martin Amis discussing the papers on Sunday AM this morning,with the later frankly mistified by the coverage and the former claiming the papers were only responding to what the public wanting debating.
Well is that the case? The arguments about newspaper ideology will run and run but do papers set the agenda or respond to it?