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If polls are spot on, London may see its first Muslim mayor

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NY Yankee

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In less than three weeks, London could make history when its denizens cast their votes: The capital city could have its first Muslim mayor if the polls and punters prove to be right.

Should Mr Sadiq Khan, 45, be elected, he will not be the first Muslim mayor of a European city. The Dutch port city of Rotterdam has been run by the Morocco-born Ahmed Aboutaleb since 2009. But that vote of confidence will come at a significant time; when Europe is still reeling from the terrorist attacks of Paris in November and Brussels last month and struggling to deal with extremism, amid rising Islamophobia. Mr Khan himself, the son of Pakistani immigrants, knows all too well the battle he is fighting. Early in his campaign, he had said that electing a Muslim mayor would send out the message that Londoners value diversity and would support an ethnic minority of a different faith. "I am a Londoner first and foremost, but it would show the haters in Iraq and the haters in Syria what sort of country we are: a beacon," he had said.

Born to a working-class family in Tooting, South London, Mr Khan grew up in a family of eight children in a three-bedroom council flat. His father was a bus driver and his mother a seamstress. He studied law at the University of North London and later practised as a human rights solicitor before being elected to Parliament in 2005 representing the ward he grew up in on a Labour Party ticket. He had already made history by being the first Muslim to attend Cabinet under former prime minister Gordon Brown in 2008. He served as Minister of State for Communities, then Transport Minister. The next mayor to run city hall will control a budget of £17 billion (S$32.8 billion) and be responsible for housing and transport policies, promoting London's economy and planning for the police and fire services as well. If current mayor Boris Johnson's push for a devolution deal goes through, the mayor will be handed even more powers, such as over transport, housing, the courts and taxes. Mr Johnson has often said since election to his second term as mayor in 2012 that he would not stand for a third term. Despite also frequently claiming he did not plan a return to Parliament, he was elected to the safe Conservative seat of Uxbridge and South Ruislip in last year's general election - enhancing rumours that he has his eye on eventually becoming prime minister.

Nine men and three women have their eyes on the mayor job this time. But as their campaigning enters the last mile, the competition is looking like nothing but a two-horse race. As far as family background goes, Mr Khan's closest rival, Mr Zac Goldsmith, could not be more different. Born into the prominent German-Jewish Goldsmith family, the 41-year-old, said to be worth £300 million, was educated at Eton College and later edited for The Ecologist, owned by his uncle. His sister Jemima was married to Pakistani cricketer and politician Imran Khan for nine years until 2004. He entered the House of Commons representing Richmond Park in 2010 under the Conservative Party, and is best known for championing green issues, including threatening to resign as MP should the government go ahead with its plans to build a third runway at Heathrow Airport. Young, telegenic and a social liberal, he was the Tory camp's hope of winning over some of the Labour and undecided voters in a city that has been leaning more and more left in recent years. But even with the crowd-pleasing Mr Johnson backing him, Mr Gold- smith's campaign seems to be waning with one misstep after another. After accusing Mr Khan of "divisive and radical politics" which some read as a veiled reference to Mr Khan's Islamic faith, Mr Goldsmith continued his onslaught last week by denouncing Mr Khan for giving "platform, oxygen and cover to people who are extremists".

Besides promising to ease London's housing crisis, make transport better and more affordable and commit to being pro-business, the two have also vowed to get tough on crime and extremism. "Keeping London safe" is a refrain from both camps, although Mr Khan seems especially intent on driving home the point about his resolve to tackle terror, saying it is his No. 1 priority. If the polls are spot on, Mr Khan will run city hall after May 5. A poll by major survey firm YouGov last month put Mr Khan seven points ahead of Mr Goldsmith.

http://www.straitstimes.com/world/europe/if-polls-are-spot-on-london-may-see-its-first-muslim-mayor

As long as he speaks in the proper Cockney accent, treats all Londoners the same regardless of their race, religion, or sexual orientation, observes the holidays of London (Christmas, Boxing Day, Bank Holiday, etc), and acts in the best interests of London, I have no problem with this.

London is a diverse city. It seems like most Londoners are from India, Nigeria, or Jamaica. Whenever I watch Tube videos, many of the employees and passengers are wearing turbans. It seems like only 1 out of every 5 London Transport employees are white Brits. And I don't have a problem with that since most foreigners assimilate into the UK culture. I'm very delighted to see interracial marriages. I'm not aware of Mr. Khan's track record, but I'm optimistic about the future of the greatest city in the world.
 
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TheEdge

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Please. Please, tell me this is trolling. Not the return of the cockney accent man...
 

TheKnightWho

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Why do you persist in this complete nonsense in the face of all evidence? Especially when you don't even live here?
 

RichmondCommu

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http://www.straitstimes.com/world/europe/if-polls-are-spot-on-london-may-see-its-first-muslim-mayor

As long as he speaks in the proper Cockney accent, treats all Londoners the same regardless of their race, religion, or sexual orientation, observes the holidays of London (Christmas, Boxing Day, Bank Holiday, etc), and acts in the best interests of London, I have no problem with this.

I've lived in London for almost 27 years and yet I don't have a Cockney accent (I was born in Derbyshire). My grown children lived in London until they were 18 (they're now at Uni) and don't have Cockney accents. Are you suggesting that I don't have the right to live in London?

Not all Londoners were born in London, let alone in Bow! (as in the Bow bells and all that
 

Clip

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http://www.straitstimes.com/world/europe/if-polls-are-spot-on-london-may-see-its-first-muslim-mayor

As long as he speaks in the proper Cockney accent, treats all Londoners the same regardless of their race, religion, or sexual orientation, observes the holidays of London (Christmas, Boxing Day, Bank Holiday, etc), and acts in the best interests of London, I have no problem with this.

London is a diverse city. It seems like most Londoners are from India, Nigeria, or Jamaica. Whenever I watch Tube videos, many of the employees and passengers are wearing turbans. It seems like only 1 out of every 5 London Transport employees are white Brits. And I don't have a problem with that since most foreigners assimilate into the UK culture. I'm very delighted to see interracial marriages. I'm not aware of Mr. Khan's track record, but I'm optimistic about the future of the greatest city in the world.


Stop, please stop.
 

NSEFAN

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It's interesting that you emphasise that the next Mayor may end up being a Muslim. Unlike in the USA, the religious affiliations of our political leaders is generally not talked about so much, as it shouldn't have any effect on their ability as politicians. Meanwhile, it would seem that politicians in the USA are expected to be fearful of God, especially one of a Christian flavour.
 

90019

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[As long as he speaks in the proper Cockney accent, treats all Londoners the same regardless of their race, religion, or sexual orientation, observes the holidays of London (Christmas, Boxing Day, Bank Holiday, etc), and acts in the best interests of London, I have no problem with this.

London is a diverse city. It seems like most Londoners are from India, Nigeria, or Jamaica. Whenever I watch Tube videos, many of the employees and passengers are wearing turbans. It seems like only 1 out of every 5 London Transport employees are white Brits. And I don't have a problem with that since most foreigners assimilate into the UK culture. I'm very delighted to see interracial marriages. I'm not aware of Mr. Khan's track record, but I'm optimistic about the future of the greatest city in the world.

I can't work out if this is persistent crap trolling or if you genuinely believe this stuff.

If it really is the latter, I think you may be in for something of a shock if you do visit London.
 
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DynamicSpirit

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I can't work out if this is persistent crap trolling or if you genuinely believe this stuff.

If it really is the latter, I think you may be in for something of a shock if you do visit London.

I'm sure it's possible to point out where people are mistaken without accusing them of trolling. Realistically, NY Yankee claims to live in New York, so it's probably not surprising if his impression of London is not accurate. After all, how many of us in the UK would think nothing of discussing and passing judgement on US politics etc. without having ever lived there - or at least, lived there long enough to have an accurate impression of what life there is really like? Clearly, NY Yankee has a somewhat inaccurate impression of London, but as far as I can see, that doesn't remotely imply he is not genuine.
--- old post above --- --- new post below ---
As long as he speaks in the proper Cockney accent

The accent you speak with should not matter.
 
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Gutfright

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Should Mr Sadiq Khan, 45, be elected, he will not be the first Muslim mayor of a European city. The Dutch port city of Rotterdam has been run by the Morocco-born Ahmed Aboutaleb since 2009.

Generally speaking Europeans aren't that bothered by the religion of their leaders, so it's not a huge deal to have a Muslim mayor. This could be Rotterdam or anywhere, Liverpool or Rome.

 

90019

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I'm sure it's possible to point out where people are mistaken without accusing them of trolling. Realistically, NY Yankee claims to live in New York, so it's probably not surprising if his impression of London is not accurate. After all, how many of us in the UK would think nothing of discussing and passing judgement on US politics etc. without having ever lived there - or at least, lived there long enough to have an accurate impression of what life there is really like? Clearly, NY Yankee has a somewhat inaccurate impression of London, but as far as I can see, that doesn't remotely imply he is not genuine.

Normally I would agree, and I try to avoid accusations of trolling, but in this case he repeatedly trots out the same stuff about London being some magical multicultural utopian paradise, and appears to be entirely unwilling to listen to anyone telling him otherwise, which is leading me to wonder whether it's actually a wind up.
 
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DynamicSpirit

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London is a diverse city. It seems like most Londoners are from India, Nigeria, or Jamaica. Whenever I watch Tube videos, many of the employees and passengers are wearing turbans.

Wikipedia claims the 2011 census results showed 60% of the population of London were white. As someone who lives in London, my impression is that seems about right. So I suspect the videos you're watching are giving a misleading impression. Of course, different ethnicities are not evenly geographically distributed, so within London there will be areas where other ethnicities are in the majority.

EDIT: And in the centre of London, a high proportion of the people you'd see wandering around are likely to be tourists, not residents. I imagine that would in itself give a misleading impression of the ethnic breakdown.
 
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yorkie

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What?! Can you please link to a sound clip with this accent, so I can find out what you are talking about? And why does the accent matter?
treats all Londoners the same regardless of their race, religion, or sexual orientation, observes the holidays of London (Christmas, Boxing Day, Bank Holiday, etc), and acts in the best interests of London, I have no problem with this.
Did you say the same thing the last time we had a vote for mayor? If not, why not?
London is a diverse city. It seems like most Londoners are from India, Nigeria, or Jamaica.
Read the replies to your previous threads, such as this one: http://www.railforums.co.uk/showthread.php?p=2422681#post2422681
Whenever I watch Tube videos, many of the employees and passengers are wearing turbans.
Which videos are these? and how many is "many"? It's a minority, and I fail to see what that has to do with the thread title or who is going to be mayor.
It seems like only 1 out of every 5 London Transport employees are white Brits.
I don't think that's likely to be true, but why does it even matter what colour someone's skin is? Why are you even thinking about it?!
And I don't have a problem with that
You don't have a problem with what?!
since most foreigners assimilate into the UK culture.
What's this thread got to do with foreigners?!
I'm very delighted to see interracial marriages. I'm not aware of Mr. Khan's track record, but I'm optimistic about the future of the greatest city in the world.
OK, but I can't understand how the rest of your post is relevant.
--- old post above --- --- new post below ---
It's interesting that you emphasise that the next Mayor may end up being a Muslim.
Indeed.
Unlike in the USA, the religious affiliations of our political leaders is generally not talked about so much, as it shouldn't have any effect on their ability as politicians.
Absolutely, thank goodness.
 

TheKnightWho

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Which videos are these? and how many is "many"? It's a minotiry, and I fail to see what that has to do with the thread title or who is going to be mayor.

I still find it staggering that many still believe that it's Muslims that wear turbans, too! Sikhs constitute 1.5% of the population of London.
 

TheEdge

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I'm sure it's possible to point out where people are mistaken without accusing them of trolling.

*In a Blackadder voice* Well maybeee, but the real case is this bloke keeps trotting out again and again with this I don't mind assimilate Muslims as long as they have a cockney accent.
 

NY Yankee

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Normally I would agree, and I try to avoid accusations of trolling, but in this case he repeatedly trots out the same stuff about London being some magical multicultural utopian paradise, and appears to be entirely unwilling to listen to anyone telling him otherwise, which is leading me to wonder whether it's actually a wind up.

I'm not a troll. That's the honest to God truth. I'm a black New Yorker who passionately loves London. I'm not trying to get off topic, but I've been followed in stores where I shopped at, I have cousins in prison, and I've been treated in a condescending matter at several schools that I attended. When I was 13, some bullies tried to steal my bike.

When people think about NYC, they think it's like Friends and Seinfeld. However, as a black man, I've seen the real NYC- rat-infested public housing, bums in the subway, gangbangers. I'm a barrister (lawyer) and I've worked with clients who can't get jobs because of their criminal record.

I didn't know much about London until I inadvertently stumbled upon the London Tube series in 2012. From that point on, I fell in love with the city. I noticed all of the cute women as well as the camaraderie among the residents. I also noticed many interracial couples, something that's taboo in my home country. At that point, I looked at every London DVD that I could get my hands on. I've also looked at hundreds of YouTube videos about both the Tube and the city in general. I like the attractions such as the London Eye, British Museum, Harrods, Hyde Park, the Science Museum, and of course Tower Bridge. I also noticed many interracial couples, something I almost never see in America. Maybe I'm looking through rose-colored glasses. Nevertheless, from my perspective, London represents an escape from the bullcrap that I deal with in America.

And as far as the Cockney accent, it's what makes the UK unique. It's been around for centuries. People from every corner of the world are free to emigrate to the greatest country in the world as long as they respect the traditions of the UK.

And if you think I'm a troll, here's my Facebook contact information:

https://www.facebook.com/peter.parker85. And before you ask, that's an alias that I use. My real name is Leonard Wilson.
 

TheEdge

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And as far as the Cockney accent, it's what makes the UK unique. It's been around for centuries. People from every corner of the world are free to emigrate to the greatest country in the world as long as they respect the traditions of the UK.

There are hundreds, if not thousands of regional accents in the UK. Accent experts can pin you down to the town if not neighborhood in the town you were brought up in by accent alone. Cockney is an accent spoken by people from one small corner of a very big city in a country of 70 million people.
 

backontrack

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Yes, there appears to be one British exception to the "leaders" rule where the wrong type of Christianity is concerned and that concerns the monarchy.

What is the "wrong type of Christianity"? Is it Catholicism or Protestantism? Or something else?
 

backontrack

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And as far as the Cockney accent, it's what makes the UK unique. It's been around for centuries. People from every corner of the world are free to emigrate to the greatest country in the world as long as they respect the traditions of the UK.

I don't have a Cockney accent; I'm from the north of England. Does that make me 'disrespectful to the UK'?
 

ainsworth74

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What is the "wrong type of Christianity"? Is it Catholicism or Protestantism? Or something else?

Catholicism. As the Monarch is the head of the Church of England they cannot be a Catholic (or any other religion).
 

DaveNewcastle

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There has recently been an Islamic Mayor in London. Lutfur Rahman.
But he was NOT Mayor of London, but the Mayor of a London Borough, the Borough of Tower Hamlets, a.k.a. Little Bangaldesh.

Rahman was Mayor from 2014 to 2015, when, after a 30 day trial in front of Richard Marwey in which a barrage of allegations of falsification of election papers, corruption, intimidation of electors, intimidation of Council staff, bribery and failures of duty were heard, he was stripped of the title and its privileges.
 

bb21

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There has recently been an Islamic Mayor in London. Lutfur Rahman.
But he was NOT Mayor of London, but the Mayor of a London Borough, the Borough of Tower Hamlets, a.k.a. Little Bangaldesh.

Ah, that one. The one who insisted on his innocence while quite a few Bangladeshis I know were (and still are) adamant that he brought shame on the community and his actions typical of that of a two-faced and corrupt politician.

I don't have a Cockney accent; I'm from the north of England. Does that make me 'disrespectful to the UK'?

Yes. :lol:

(You asked for it - but of course only kidding.)

When people think about NYC, they think it's like Friends and Seinfeld. However, as a black man, I've seen the real NYC- rat-infested public housing, bums in the subway, gangbangers. I'm a barrister (lawyer) and I've worked with clients who can't get jobs because of their criminal record.

Not much different to London.

I didn't know much about London until I inadvertently stumbled upon the London Tube series in 2012. From that point on, I fell in love with the city. I noticed all of the cute women as well as the camaraderie among the residents. I also noticed many interracial couples, something that's taboo in my home country. At that point, I looked at every London DVD that I could get my hands on. I've also looked at hundreds of YouTube videos about both the Tube and the city in general. I like the attractions such as the London Eye, British Museum, Harrods, Hyde Park, the Science Museum, and of course Tower Bridge. I also noticed many interracial couples, something I almost never see in America. Maybe I'm looking through rose-colored glasses. Nevertheless, from my perspective, London represents an escape from the bullcrap that I deal with in America.

London certainly has its darker sides, and plenty of London suburbs are ghettos. Of course they don't stop the city (or rather a collection of cities and boroughs) being great overall, but once you have lived here for a good while you will know that London is not as wonderful as you are making out. All the problems you find in New York, you will find them (some to a lesser extent but others worse) in London.

But don't let us stop you. If you get an opportunity, come and live in London for a couple of years. You may indeed fall in love with it, like many others I'm sure. There are also many others, quite a few on this forum, who absolutely cannot stand the place.

And as far as the Cockney accent, it's what makes the UK unique. It's been around for centuries. People from every corner of the world are free to emigrate to the greatest country in the world as long as they respect the traditions of the UK.

Not quite so if you have to go through this process to being accepted into this country. We are a far less welcoming country in immigration rules than many other countries in the world.
 

DarloRich

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I'm not a troll. That's the honest to God truth. I'm a black New Yorker who passionately loves London. I'm not trying to get off topic, but I've been followed in stores where I shopped at, I have cousins in prison, and I've been treated in a condescending matter at several schools that I attended. When I was 13, some bullies tried to steal my bike.

When people think about NYC, they think it's like Friends and Seinfeld. However, as a black man, I've seen the real NYC- rat-infested public housing, bums in the subway, gangbangers. I'm a barrister (lawyer) and I've worked with clients who can't get jobs because of their criminal record.

I didn't know much about London until I inadvertently stumbled upon the London Tube series in 2012. From that point on, I fell in love with the city. I noticed all of the cute women as well as the camaraderie among the residents. I also noticed many interracial couples, something that's taboo in my home country. At that point, I looked at every London DVD that I could get my hands on. I've also looked at hundreds of YouTube videos about both the Tube and the city in general. I like the attractions such as the London Eye, British Museum, Harrods, Hyde Park, the Science Museum, and of course Tower Bridge. I also noticed many interracial couples, something I almost never see in America. Maybe I'm looking through rose-colored glasses. Nevertheless, from my perspective, London represents an escape from the bullcrap that I deal with in America.

And as far as the Cockney accent, it's what makes the UK unique. It's been around for centuries. People from every corner of the world are free to emigrate to the greatest country in the world as long as they respect the traditions of the UK.

And if you think I'm a troll, here's my Facebook contact information:

https://www.facebook.com/peter.parker85. And before you ask, that's an alias that I use. My real name is Leonard Wilson.

I am afraid you may be sadly disappointed with the UK on arrival.........
 

CatfordCat

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Someone from Tooting would have a South / South West London accent.

Which is not the same as a cockney accent (the 'Bow Bells' you need to be born within sound of is St Mary Le Bow Church on Cheapside, not Bow near Stratford)

or an East London accent

or a South East London accent

and so on

(at one time, I could usually place a Londoner within a few miles either way by their accent. Accents in general are getting more regional than local now)
 

AM9

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Generally speaking Europeans aren't that bothered by the religion of their leaders, so it's not a huge deal to have a Muslim mayor. This could be Rotterdam or anywhere, Liverpool or Rome.


... 'cause Rotterdam is anywhere, anywhere alone ... :)
 
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