Rod Liddle: ‘I’ve never had a go at Muslims, only Islam’

Rod LiddleAfter preparing chocolate and cinnamon French toast for his children’s breakfast and before popping out to a delightful Wiltshire village pub for some lunch, Rod Liddle is explaining why he enjoys racist jokes so much more these days.

“I find racist jokes funnier now than I did 30 years ago because it’s so socially unacceptable,” he says.

Liddle, 48, has enraged sections of the liberal intelligentsia with his repeated and outspoken attacks on Islam, both in the Sunday Times and his weekly columns for The Spectator.

“It’s funny, y’know, quite a few of my friends would be inclined to vote BNP, and I don’t think they’re racist. Their objection is far less to the immigration than to what they see as the white liberals who have genuflected before this immigration, their annoyance is at things like positive discrimination,” he says.

The criticisms from the “golden milieu of columnists” had begun a couple of years earlier after Liddle had attacked Islam in print. He also produced a speech under the heading “Islamophobia: count me in.” His beef is with the ideology itself, which he sees as oppressive, rather than those who practise it and he was livid at suggestions that he had been controversial just for the sake of it. “I’ve never had a go at Muslims, I’ve always had a go at Islam,” he says.

Independent, 5 January 2008

That would be this Rod Liddle.