I note that the woke educators cannot leave well enough alone. The British Raj did influence England and the English — from a perverse love of curries, to a bunch of loan words, such as Verandah. And Mufti.
Mufti days are no uniform days, except in Whakatane, where a school named after the weapon of Neptune has gone full anti Colonialist, and terminally woke.
A Whakatāne secondary school has dropped the term “mufti” day amid concerns the word is culturally insensitive.
Trident High School opted for the term “kakahu kainga” for its non-uniform fundraising day for animal charities last week, as staff and students felt the term mufti was inappropriate.
A spokesperson for the Human Rights Commission said the word ‘mufti’ was an Arabic word used to describe a Muslim scholar of high standing but in the course of colonisation, the term was appropriated.
“That appropriation has a history of degradation and racism.”
A Muslim scholar said although he did not have an issue with the word being used in the school context, it was preferable to use a different word if they could.
Sheikh Mohammad Amir is chairman of the Religious Advisory Board of the Federation of Islamic Association of New Zealand and Mufti of New Zealand.
“A mufti is a scholar who is well versed with Islamic theology, so a person who is very senior in the community who has been highly educated where he is able to issue verdicts or fatawa,” he said.
“It is not an issue for us,” Amir said of the use of the word today in schools.
“It is more of if you have better terminology to use then that would be better.”
He said a change by one school might lead to other schools making changes.
Trident High School science teacher Annetjie Botha said they decided to drop the word “mufti” after learning the origins from a Spinoff article.
The article, by historian Katie Pickles, describes mufti day’s colonialist origins, how it came to be used by schools and calls for it to be banned when used to describe non-uniform days. The term was coined by British military leaders in India during the early 1800s to describe the clothes, loose robes and slippers, they wore when off-duty.
The soldiers of the Raj were not stupid. The clothing worn by Native Indians, particulary Native Troops, was more appropriate for the climate and they acquired some right quick, borrowing the name as they did.