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  1. #1
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    keeping it in the family is creating retarded pakistanis in the UK

    The greatest taboo: One woman lifts the lid on on the tragic genetic consequences of when first cousins marry



    By Tazeen Ahmad
    Last updated at 12:47 PM on 22nd August 2010


    Sitting in the family living room, I watched tensely as my mother and her older brother signed furiously at each other. Although almost completely without sound, their row was high-octane, even vicious.
    Three of my uncles were born deaf but they knew how to make themselves heard. Eventually, my uncle caved in and fondly put his arm around his sister.
    My mum has always had a special place in her family because she was the first girl to live beyond childhood. Five of her sisters died as babies or toddlers. It was not until many years later that anyone worked out why so many children died and three boys were born deaf.
    Today there is no doubt among us that this tragedy occurred because my grandparents were first cousins.

    Tazeen Ahmad files a courageous and controversial report on one of the great taboos of modern Britain

    My grandmother’s heart was broken from losing so many daughters at such a young age. As a parent, I can’t imagine what she went through.
    My family is not unique. In the UK more than 50 per cent of British Pakistanis marry their cousins – in Bradford that figure is 75 per cent – and across the country the practice is on the rise and also common among East African, Middle-Eastern and Bangladeshi communities.
    Back when my grandparents were having children, the med[at]ical facts were not established. But today in Britain alone there are more than 70 scientific studies on the subject.

    We know the children of first cousins are ten times more likely to be born with recessive genetic disorders which can include infant mortality, deafness and blindness.
    We know British Pakistanis constitute 1.5 per cent of the population, yet a third of all children born in this country with rare recessive genetic diseases come from this community.
    Despite overwhelming evidence, in the time I spent filming Dispatches: When Cousins Marry, I felt as if I was breaking a taboo rather than addressing a reality. Pakistanis have been marrying cousins for generations.

    In South Asia the custom keeps family networks close and ensures assets remain in the family. In Britain, the aim can be to strengthen bonds with the subcontinent as cousins from abroad marry British partners.
    Some told us they face extreme pressure to marry in this way. One young woman, ‘Zara’, said when she was 16 she was emotionally blackmailed by her husband’s family in Pakistan who threatened suicide over loss of honour should she refuse to marry her cousin.

    She relented and lives in a deeply unhappy marriage. But others told me of the great benefits of first cousin marriage – love, support and understanding. To them, questioning it is an attack on the community or, worse, Islam.
    At a Pakistani centre in Sheffield, one man said: ‘The community feels targeted, whether that be forced marriages or first-cousin marriages. The community is battening down its hatches, not wanting to engage.’
    As a British Pakistani, I am aware of the religious, cultural and racial sensitivities around this issue and understand why people would be on the defensive when questioned about it.

    At times I was torn between explaining the health risks while privately understanding the community’s sense of being demonised.
    But I have also grown up in a family that has suffered the medical implications and strongly believe that people should have the choice to make an informed decision.
    Throughout I had to remind myself that this is a health story – nothing more. It is not about religion or cultural identity. It is about avoidable suffering such at that experienced by Saeeda and Jalil Akhtar, whom I met in Bradford.

    They are first cousins and have six children, three with the genetic disease mucolipidosis type IV. This stops the body getting rid of waste properly and affects brain functions controlling vision and movement.
    Mohsin, their second eldest, is 17 and blind. He wanders aimless and helpless, often crying in frustration. His sisters Hina, 13, and Zainab, 11, have the same condition. They live in almost complete darkness.
    Saeeda is worn down from years of round-the-clock care. She spoon-feeds them, dresses them and fears for them. Neither she nor her husband can quite accept that their familial link is the cause of this pain.
    This is a major public health issue that has huge implications for other services. The cost to the NHS is many millions of pounds.

    On average, a children’s hospital will see 20 to 30 recessive gene disorders a decade, but one hospital in Bradford has seen 165, while British Pakistani children are three times more likely to have learning difficulties, with care costing about £75,000 a year per child.
    However during this investigation we found no efforts to introduce any national awareness-raising campaign. Why?
    We approached 16 MPs with a significant number of British Pakistani constituents for interview – every one declined. We asked 30 MPs with a high population of British Pakistanis
    in their seats to give their views in a short survey. Only one, who wanted to remain anonymous, responded, saying anyone who tried to talk about it risked being attacked politically.
    A lone voice was Ann Cryer, former Labour MP for Keighley, near Bradford, who said ‘fear of being accused of racism or demonisation’ prevented politicians speaking up.
    It is not just British Pakistani families who suffer. Wayne and Sonia Gibbs are white and first cousins once removed. They had no idea this could lead to problems. Their daughter Nicole had juvenile osteopetrosis, a genetic disease that causes the bones to thicken and crush the body’s organs. Nicole died aged two.
    The couple now know both carry the recessive genes that caused Nicole’s illness. They wanted more children – but had genetic counselling first. They have two healthy boys today.
    I have travelled nationwide, meeting doctors and families whose lives are full of pain. To me the solution is simple: Ring the alarm bells loud and clear.
    In Birmingham, one GP practice has taken radical action. The doctors have campaigned heavily to stop cousin marriages. They have introduced genetic screening and testing for patients, starting at 16, and now claim that very few cousin marriages take place there.
    My mother tells me that, long before I was born, her siblings and their cousins decided their tragedy would never recur.
    The conclusion some will draw is that cousin marriages should be banned. I disagree. But people must be able to make informed choices about the risks involved and options available, be they genetic screening, counselling or carrier-testing.

    At least there should be leaflets in doctors’ sur[at]geries and school campaigns.
    Meeting the families in the programme upset me greatly. Every day for them was an uphill struggle, mostly because their children needed so much help and this put enormous stress on their family lives.
    Yet this was avoidable. If this were any other health issue, politicians would have been out in force. But they are silent and as a result children continue to be born with terrible, prevent[at]able disabilities that are devastating their lives and those of their loved ones.


    TAZEEN AHMAD: Three of my uncles are deaf. Five aunts died as babies. Why? My grandparents were first cousins who married | Mail Online

  2. #2
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    who said ‘fear of being accused of racism or demonisation’ prevented politicians speaking up.
    its good that this lady is speaking out about this problem, thankfully, over the past few months it is starting to be discussed in the press.

    politicians making lame excuses about accusations of racism should they broach this subject will just encourage more of those accusations from pakistani communities that benefit from marriage between cousins.

    sadly, it is a fact that full integration of muslims into modern western society is almost impossible so long as these outdated and damaging traditions are condoned by british politicians, and by not speaking out against it they are condoning it.

    once again, the strain and expense of treating these unfortunate children will be borne by the taxpayer.

    multiculturalism, dontcha just love it.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by teddy
    We know British Pakistanis constitute 1.5 per cent of the population, yet a third of all children born in this country with rare recessive genetic diseases come from this community.
    Not to mention more who are disabled in other ways. Paki areas in UK towns have buses that go around picking up the idiot kids taking them off to day centers, they stop every few houses in some streets.
    If a whitey had made this report you can imagine the response from 'offended minorities' the ones who can actually wipe their own arses and feed themselves that is.

  4. #4
    Philippine Expat Davis Knowlton's Avatar
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    Brave lady.

  5. #5
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    It is not a recent thing either .
    In the late 60's I was working as a draftsman in a contractors office.
    We had a Pakistani lad working there - mid 20's - who had been married to his cousin at 18.
    He had 3 kids - all needing constant care - and they had lost 2 within a month or so of being born .
    Heard many years later that he and his wife had gone back to Pakistan - leaving the 3 kids with relatives !

  6. #6
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    Has DJ Pat read this?

  7. #7
    euston has flown

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    The headline is there to shock and insult. but there is unfortunately a lot of truth. Marrying first cousins is ok along as its rare.

    My mother ran a training program for training teachers for children with extreme mental handicaps, in the 1980s I remember her having lots of run ins with people in the local government over this issue.

    Pakistani children were over represented in the schools and the local government was convinced it was a poverty/lead exposure issue. My mother kept pointing out that when you did the stats the correlation with ethnic origin was much stronger than that for echomomic and lead exposure issues. And that there were clusters of handicapped children in non-pakisani communities living in remote mining towns, where the town was founded by 5-20 families centuries earlier.

    She did not win the argument and whilst the local water supply is limed to reduce leaching of lead from lead pipes (a good thing); the only genetic counselling given out by the local gov covers thalassemia.

    To be honest this issue only affects a few parts of south asia, Kashmir/NWF. In most of the rest of south asia you have a lot of keeping it in the family marriages but these issues are avoided by having a complex procedure, that I do not even pretend to understand, that decides which families for so close they should be regarded as brother/sisters. breaking these taboos does lead to the odd lynching.

    This is also the same local gov that commissioned a report on the connections between orphanages and street prostitution. When the researchers discovered that far more than half of the local prostitutes had been in their orphanages they reacted by taking out a high court gag on the researchers and burning all but one copy of the report. Birmingham, UK is a lovely place and in many ways as broken as thailand

  8. #8
    Molecular Mixup
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    welcome to modern Britain, home of the worst immigrants from the worlds worst countries, no wonder people feel more at home in Thailand .
    I dont see Britains liberals taking thier holidays in Pakistan ,Bangladesh , Sudan, Eritrea,Nigeria,Jamaca,Afghanistan,Iraq,Iran, , yet they dont mind flooding britain with scum from these places

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    Thailand Expat zygote1's Avatar
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    Plus: Less likely to be able to build suicide bomb vests
    Negative: More easily coerced, manipulated into wearing suicide bomb vests.

    Oh well, they'll fit in very nicely at Red Labour and National Front meetings.

  10. #10
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    You just can't expect to breed in family for too long without expecting problems.
    It's probably less likely to be the first cousin marriage that was the problem, more the three or four generations of first cousins before that.
    I seem to think there were big problems in parts of Spain and maybe Finland as well during the last century.
    Be happy dudes. It's a lot more fun than crying.

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    But others told me of the great benefits of first cousin marriage – love, support and understanding. To them, questioning it is an attack on the community or, worse, Islam.
    Well there we go, at least we know why now.

    The cost to the NHS is many millions of pounds.
    No matter, the good old Brits will pay for it, just as they always do, so sweet.

    On average, a children’s hospital will see 20 to 30 recessive gene disorders a decade, but one hospital in Bradford has seen 165, while British Pakistani children are three times more likely to have learning difficulties, with care costing about £75,000 a year per child.
    No need to comment much about that......

  12. #12
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    retarded pakistani's?? isn't that pleonasm?

    they could do a blood check to avoid these things before getting married or just stop doing it ....

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by mr Fred View Post
    You just can't expect to breed in family for too long without expecting problems.
    It's probably less likely to be the first cousin marriage that was the problem, more the three or four generations of first cousins before that.
    I seem to think there were big problems in parts of Spain and maybe Finland as well during the last century.


    Is there any other retards in your family Fred?

  14. #14
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    Nothing new about this practice, and for decades it has periodically been highlighted by the media only to be smacked down by pc fundamentalists.


    At the risk of sounding biased (sic), there are several advantages to be had from this form of inbreeding.

    While the offspring of first-cousin and other to-be-avoided couplings are blameless, the practice produces a high rate of simpletons and other unnecessarily damaged humans from what may be two perfectly normal and healthy people, just not suited to each other. This is good for an ideology that cares little for its followers and even less to educate them to the dangers of this common practice. In some backward cultures/beliefs, the head count is more valued than health and the quality of life.

    While I would guess that most of such marriages are legal in the conventional sense, since pedigrees are not investigated, many are arranged with either the couple or more likely the girl having little choice in the matter, or sanctioned by a religious leader outside of the legal framework, and are more concerned with baby production than distractions like health and life quality.

    Still, the fair argument in a crazy pc world, subscribes to the free choice of a person to be with his or her 'love', even if the couple have never met before and are related, and even if the relation would make the marriage illegal if it were known by the authorities. After all, not all marriages are witnessed and officially endorsed. And once coupled up with baby on the way, it would be a clear breach of yuman rites to force termination on the 'likelihood' or even certainty of deficiency.

    Quite aside from the strain on resources that these inbred offspring pose upon the community and society, we know and are constantly reminded by a weak judiciary that certain illnesses and conditions mark the owner with carte blanche to do virtually as they please, which further elevates the yuman rites of a minority over the majority. Too many examples of this to bother listing, though it should be mentioned that by far the most involve non-Paki non-Muslims.

    Next, of course, such persons are perfect specimens for indoctrination by the dysfunctional ideology, not just through rabid teachings pumped into the psyche at an early age, as per norm, but due also to their lowered physical/mental capacity, which may or may not be the preferred end result.

    And naturally we must respect that everyone is equal and enjoys equal rights, which oddly enough includes health and dignity, for which the parents will never need to answer since that would be racist.


    Anyway, as we seem to be stuck with it, for now at least, I say educate these backward people on the outside chance that some will resist entering a relationship when they know it significantly raises the likelihood of producing defective offspring.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by hazz View Post
    The headline is there to shock and insult.
    Absolutely no intention to shock

  16. #16
    euston has flown

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    Quote Originally Posted by teddy View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by hazz View Post
    The headline is there to shock and insult.
    Absolutely no intention to shock
    Please accept my apologies.

    Here is another artical in the new statesman about the same community, they quote 60% of marrages being to first cousins, outch

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