Let’s say you’re on Newsnight talking about, say, caste, how do you handle Paxman and make your point. Remember always your first priority is to defend the Faith, not its followers. Do not mistake the two. The former is eternal, the latter are regularly questionable.
Paxman: But discrimination is bad isn’t it?
You: (Concede, and go beyond his point. This ensures their next step is blocked and you rightly are seen as the bigger open-minded person. Do not deny an obvious fact. You will destroy your credibility. Use it an opportunity to say what is good about Hinduism. You have a 10 minute advert – use it. 10 minutes to defend your faith.)
‘Yes Jeremy, it is appalling and must be stamped out. Let me tell you how to do it, where legislation should be the last not the first resort. After all, would you legislate against Christian fundamentalists? No. It’s a miniscule problem. So even one is too many, but why stigmatise the whole community? A community which does so much good, that we can all work with?
Provide us the evidence and we will do everything to clean up our house if there is dirt in our house. But really, Parliament coming down on us, makes us feel like criminals? Do you really want another criminalised ethnic minority feeling put upon?
Paxman: But Hinduism promotes caste doesn’t it?
You: Jeremy, Hinduism is a broad church, like the Christian Church. There may even be gender discrimination. But we must educate not alienate. A small minority believe in things the vast majority of us think have no place in Britain. This is the statistical equivalent in Britain of raising the issue of anti-Witch discrimination. Why are the hundreds of thousands of Hindus who agree with you and me being attacked?
We’re an open faith with 5,000 years of history revered by Einstein and Western thinkers alike. We’re not some backward subcontinent cult Jeremy. We’re not the Taliban Jeremy – our Faith drove the creation of the world’s largest democracy and its constitution under which a billion Hindus live was written by what you term ‘an untouchable’.
So if a Christian causes offence to another Christian – do you attack the Catholic Church as a whole Jeremy? Do you say Parliament must legislate?
Paxman: Who do you represent? Which Hindu groups?
You: Jeremy 99.9% of Hindus would agree with me about caste being vile, as I am sure 99.9% of Englishmen would agree with you about Class being a vile way to discriminate and just as 99.9% of journalists would agree corruption is something that is vile. I speak for the 99.9% of Hindus. (ie remind him of his own weakness, show teeth in your defence. Make the interviewer think about more than one thing). If your research shows you anything it is that Hindus are independent minded and no one speaks for someone else – we simply agree or disagree – it is the ultimate democratic faith. (yes mention democracy! Defend the faith, never the followers).
Just as 99.9 Muslims believe Islamic terrorism is bad or Catholics agree child molestation by Catholic priests is. And it is not representative of the faith or its followers. On that I speak for all Hindus.
By the way, it’s not caste discrimination. It’s caste based offensive remarks. I think we need people to stop being offensive, whether on caste, or accent, or being from Essex, or ginger hair, or workplace bullying – as happens in the BBC.
But what worries me Jeremy is that this is being brought up as an issue. Statistically insignificant – yet attacks a whole community. Why Jeremy?