University of Auckland fires man for expecting a student to respect a cultural norm

STOCKHOLM Photo: Anders Wiklund

Islam is already impacting our New Zealand culture in a really alarming way, and leading the charge to demolish our cultural norms is Auckland University.

Recently Labour MPs were offended and shocked when a visiting group of men from Iran refused to shake a female MP’s hand, but last year the University of Auckland fired a man for daring to expect a female student to shake his hand.

When a Muslim visitor to New Zealand refused to shake a Kiwi MP’s hand because she was a woman it was a scandal and was reported in the media, but when a Kiwi academic expected a Muslim female student to shake his hand he was fired for his ‘unacceptable behaviour’.


To further illustrate just how insane it is to call this New Zealand academic’s behaviour unacceptable (when he was only expecting a New Zealand cultural norm to be respected inside New Zealand), in Sweden the complete opposite happened.

A man is suing a local council in Sweden after he lost his job for refusing to shake hands with female colleagues.

The man, a practising Muslim, worked for Helsingborg municipality in southern Sweden. He said it was against his religious beliefs to shake women’s hands, although he was happy to shake the hands of male colleagues.

But council bosses said his stance was incompatible with their equality policy, and said he could no longer work there.

“We are in favour of diversity. People can believe what they like, but that doesn’t mean that they can discriminate. We will stand up for values like equality,” Liberal councillor Maria Winberg told The Local.

Our cultural norm of shaking hands is rooted in our cultural value that the sexes are equal. When in Rome you are supposed to do what the Romans do, and in New Zealand there is an expectation of equal treatment.

Auckland University is wrong to put a so-called religious freedom above our value of equal rights. Sharia law dictates that Muslim women and Muslim men are not to respect the laws of non-Muslims if they go against Islamic law. This is why, even inside Western societies, female genital mutilation, for example, is still performed on some Muslim girls even though it is against the law.

A University of Auckland academic has been fired after trying to shake a female Muslim student’s hand and then accusing her of sexual discrimination when she refused.

Good on him. He was quite right; it was sexual discrimination. Just ask the female MP how she felt when the Iranian men refused to shake her hand. She was insulted because they refused because of her sex. Why shouldn’t a man in the same situation feel equally disrespected when a woman refuses to shake his hand because he is a man?

A newsletter from vice-chancellor Stuart McCutcheon to all university staff said the unnamed, male staff member intentionally set out to force the young student to shake his hand and when she refused his advances, the man then made a sexual discrimination complaint against her.

Note how the above statement is LOADED with emotive language: ‘his advances’ and ‘forced’.

The employee acted knowing it was culturally and religiously inappropriate for Muslim women to have physical contact with a man who was not a close relative or husband, McCutcheon said.

So what? Do we, in New Zealand, allow men to marry multiple wives and to marry off their 12-year-old daughters to 30-year-old men? No, we don’t. According to the line of reasoning above, we should allow it because it would be religiously and culturally appropriate if they were Muslim.

Our laws and our cultural norms are what apply inside our country. Inside Muslim countries, no respect or accommodation is shown for Western law or cultural or religious norms. Islamic law applies only inside Muslim countries and, in New Zealand, we shake hands – end of story.

Following the complaint a formal investigation was conducted by the university which found the employee’s behaviour had amounted to “serious misconduct“, he said.

The man was subsequently fired late last year.

The announcement, made on Tuesday, was delayed to protect the privacy of those involved in the event, he said.

“It is important for all members of our community to understand such behaviours have no place in the university, and that if they do occur I will not hesitate to authorise appropriate investigatory and disciplinary procedures,” McCutcheon said.[…]

University of Auckland Muslim Students Association (AMSA) former-president Ahmad Umar said it was sad to hear such an incident took place on campus.

“I personally believe the university did the right thing by terminating the staff’s employment, as this shows the strong stance of the university that there no space for discrimination on the basic rights of the students,” Umar said.

Well done, AMSA. You have just moved New Zealand one step closer to an Islamic caliphate. It is small wins like this one that, step by step, build the case for Islamic superiority and gain the Muslim community the right to live outside our laws and to disrespect our culture. This one case has shown that the rights of a Western academic to follow his cultural norms not only come second to a foreign and incompatible culture but that standing up for equal rights will cost a non-Muslim New Zealander their livelihood.

Why was this story hidden for a year? I invite the person who lost his job to contact us at Whaleoil. If we had known sooner we could have helped him to crowdfund a legal defence to win his job back. It may not be too late. This terrible decision by Auckland University should not go unchallenged.

– Stuff


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