It’s good to see that French teachers aren’t just teaching but also learning.
A few months ago their colleague Samuel Paty was beheaded by a pupil for illustrating a lesson on freedom of expression with Charlie Hebdo caricatures of Mohammed.
Following Kipling’s advice (“If you can keep your head when all about you are losing theirs…”), half of French secondary school teachers now avoid subjects that may offend the delicate sensibilities of their Muslim pupils.
Specifically, they steer clear of sexuality, the Holocaust, Jews in general, evolution, pigs and any mention of Americans. This, I think, shows a singular lack of creativity. In fact, they could curry favour with their sensitive flock by safely uttering sentences including all such taboos.
For example: “Those f***ing American Jews, who have evolved from pigs, still insist that the Holocaust happened.” There, every objectionable subject covered, every pitfall avoided, diversity served.
Those circumspect educators also forgo visits to cathedrals, which used to be a feature in French curricula. Again, they cede their position too easily. They could still take their pupils on a tour of, say, Chartres – provided the youngsters are issued with paint sprays. That way they could still admire the cathedral’s Gothic architecture and sans pareil stained glass as they paint pig’s heads on the walls.
Another bone of contention is the presence of girls in sports, which too is deeply offensive. After all, those pig’s spawns prance about exhibiting their bare legs at least, and sometimes even more. That, however, doesn’t mean they have to be excluded.
Scantily clad young ladies can still be used as goal posts, archery targets and punching bags. That way they can participate in sports without either assailing the innermost feelings of Muslim pupils or playing with the teachers’ heads.
You see, one can maintain the highest multicultural standards without in any way restricting pupils’ ability to learn. All one has to do is use one’s head.
P.S. Two consecutive sentences in The Mail paean to Diana: “The couple met, he [Hasnat Khan, Diana’s lover] reveals, when she shouted at the Pakistani-born medic as he left work one day: ‘Oi, where are you going?” Mr Khan said: ‘One of her most attractive qualities was her vulnerability.’” I’d be tempted to separate the two statements with a little padding, but that’s only me.