A school in England attempting to be politically correct toward Muslims ended up offending them even more when it changed the name of its rendition of “The Three Little Pigs.”
The Honley Church of England Junior School in Huddersfield, West Yorkshire, decided that since pigs are offensive to Muslims, it should rework the classic tale and call it “The Three Little Puppies” instead, according to the Daily Mail of London.
Islamic leaders, however, condemned the move as misguided and said decisions like this were turning Muslims into “misfits” in society.
About 250 children, ages 7 to 11, were to perform “The Three Little Pigs” at Huddersfield Town Hall in June. But at a recent committee meeting, the organizers of the Kirklees Primary Music Festival decided to change the script to be “sensitive” to Muslims.
“We have to be sensitive if we want to be multi-cultural. It was felt it would be more responsible not to use the three little pigs,” said committee member Gill Goodswen, head teacher of Stile Common Junior School, according to the London paper.
“We feared that some Muslim children wouldn’t sing along to the words about pigs.”
Goodswen said there was no complaint that prompted the decision, but after the move, Sheik Ibrahim Mogra of the Muslim Council of Britain called it “bizarre.”
“The vast majority of Muslims have no problem whatsoever with the ‘Three Little Pigs,'” he told the Daily Mail. “It’s always been the traditional way of telling the story, and I don’t see why that should be changed.”
Mogra acknowledged Muslims are forbidden to eat pork, “but there is no prohibition about reading stories about pigs. This is an unnecessary step.”
Mogra asked how far society would go.
“Are we going to change the seven dwarves because it’s discriminatory towards people who are physically less able? Where do you draw the line?” he asked.
“Every time we get these stories Muslims are seen more and more as misfits. We have to accept there’s a predominant culture here.”
Town council member Terry Lyons told the London paper the school was “pandering to a few extremists,” making it easier for them to recruit.
Steve Price, head of the school, said he had no role in the decision, but stated, “We are part of the family of Kirklees schools. This family is set up to celebrate children’s talents and I can well understand some head teachers being careful about not causing offense.”