Views of British Muslims

As I’ve said before, there is a challenge with not just jihadists, but also what I call extreme views among a minority of Muslims. The example I use is support for the death penalty for apostates. That is a view incompatible with a free society. You should not face any criminal penalty for changing your religion, let alone death.

A survey was done of views among Muslims in the UK. The full results are here. Now there has been some criticism of the survey methodology such as possible over-sampling in areas with a high Muslim population (which is more likely to foster radical views). So these findings should be taken as approximate. Maybe 38% is only 30% for example. And you have sample margin of errors. But nevertheless the high level of support for some views is a concern, and something that needs to be confronted.

There is also good news in the survey – most Muslims strongly feel they belong to Britain, and only 1% was separate Islamic areas.

  • 86% strongly feel they belong to Britain (which is good)
  • However only 63% in the North East strongly feel they belong
  • Only 3% think they are treated worse than other religions by their local doctor or schools
  • However 17% think treated worse by Police
  • 22% of Muslims think religious harassment of Muslims is a big problem and 73% not a problem
  • 17% have personally experience harassment while 82% have not
  • 36% mix socially in their home with non-Muslims at least weekly, 39% infrequently and 22% never
  • 39% want to fully integrate with non-Muslims, 29% mainly integrate, 17% some integration and only 1% want seperate Islamic areas with sharia law and government
  • 33% think boys and girls should be taught separately and 46% disagree
  • Only 28% think it is acceptable for a homosexual to be a teacher and 47% say unacceptable
  • 31% say a British Muslim should be able to have more than one wife and 46% disagree
  • 39% say a wife should always obey their husband and 32% disagree
  • Only 18% think homosexuality should be legal and 52% disagree
  • 23% support sharia law in some ares of UK, and 43% opposed
  • 88% say UK is a good place for Muslims to live and only 3% a bad place
  • Negative feelings towards other religious groups are Catholics 12%, Atheists 23%, Buddhists 20%, Jews 25%, Protestants 13%, Hindus 17%
  • Only 1% think the Holocaust is a myth
  • 4% support and 83% condemn terrorist acts
  • 5% support stoning for adultery and 79% condemn
  • 18% support violence against those mocking the Prophet and 64% condemn
  • Only 4% believe publications should be able to publish depictions of the Prophet and 78% say not okay
  • 7% support objective of Islamic State (but not methods) and 675 oppose
  • 3% support actions of Islamic State and 73% oppose

Overall some of the results are very encouraging, with very low levels of support for Islamic State, stoning for adultery etc, Holocuast denial. However other findings such as criminalising homosexuality and prohibiting publications showing Muhammad are more challenging.

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