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Politics/Current Affairs

Daily Mail Warns: UK Muslims Want To Destroy You!

Tuesday, January 30th, 2007 at 11:50 by Stephen Ball

The Daily Mail has reported that an entire generation of young Muslims are being alienated by the Government’s policy of ‘Multiculturalism’. “A Generation of Outsiders!” screams the headline.

…Okay, that’s as much as I can write while keeping it sounding professional. What a load of steaming - alright, look, I’ll try again.

The poll states that four out of every ten Muslims in Britain would prefer to live under Sharia law” - no, no, it’s no good.

I’m not usually a cynical person. (No really, stay with me here.) I’m trusting and optimistic, and feel that any official report must have some basis in fact. So let’s just study the circumstances around this particular story.

The Daily Hate Mail is well ahead in its race to be the UK’s biggest spoof satire on tabloids. It captures the ignorance, the outrage, the hilarious emphasis on the same old topics, and its masterstroke is that half of its own readership aren’t even in on the joke. But the figures don’t come from the Daily Mail, no! They’re from the “Policy Exchange”, which is… a right-wing thinktank. Oh, surprise.

Well, let’s not let the source of the story cloud our judgement, but examine the numbers in detail: “Most alarmingly, 13 per cent of young Muslims said they ‘admired’ organisations such as Al Qaeda which are prepared to ‘fight the West’.”

Now, does that 13% strike you as a reliable figure? Or could it in fact be, well, bollocks?

How about “36 per cent of the young people questioned said they believed that a Muslim who converts to another religion should be punished by death “… Riiiight. Yes, I believe that number, sure. But just before I run to sign up for Tory leader David Cameron (who completely coincidentally has a big speech on multiculturalism tonight) let me take one last look at the newspaper.

The Editor, Paul Dacre, would be responsible for how the story is presented. Is he reliable, or could he maybe be a little biased? (I’ll ignore my first instinct, which was to see him saying “Muslims? And a chance to bash Multiculturalism? Why, that’s my favourite!”)

Let’s see, last week:

  • He accused the BBC of “cultural Marxism” and said it “tries to undermine Conservative society”. Which is odd, given that the PM’s spokesman said the BBC was following “the Daily Mail agenda” (ie: Conservative agenda).
  • He said that former Director-General of the BBC Greg Dyke was a “Labour Stooge”. Greg Dyke points out that it was the BBC and Labour Party that very loudly fired him, and that a survey found that Daily Mail readers were more likely to appreciate the BBC than the average public.
  • He claimed that The Guardian (and BBC) never consider anyone else’s opinion to be valid. The editor of the Guardian pointed out that they’d published 1,500 words of that very speech in the paper, which certainly seems to be giving room to other views. (And they printed Max Clifford, which is a whole other article).

So okay, Dacre might be a bit paranoid insane sensitive, but is there any other evidence to suggest that this report was accurate, and that thousands of Muslims are actually as volatile and xenophobic as Jade Goody?

The same report says that 84% of Muslims asked think that they’ve been treated fairly in the UK, with some thinking the Government actually goes too far trying not to cause offence. This is the first number that sounds remotely realistic.

One of these days, Dacre will come out and announce that the whole thing has been a joke, a kind of reverse-Ali G, and we’ll laugh and laugh. In the meantime, I’ll just laugh.

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7 Comments on “Daily Mail Warns: UK Muslims Want To Destroy You!”

  1. paddyjames Says:

    But supposing it’s true? You are talking about a ‘culture’ that is facistic, sexist, homophobic, anti-semitic and racist; why wouldn’t any ‘good’ mohammedan hate everything about the West?

  2. Stephen Ball Says:

    Because while it’s potentially true on paper (and the old testament isn’t any better), it’s blatantly not true among actual Muslims in real life - not any that I or anyone I know has ever met. There’s extremists in every group, but *4 out of 10*?! I think I’d have noticed…

  3. paddyjames Says:

    Ok, I lived in East London for 15 years and many people in the asian community (regardless of religion) were aware of people who had fought in Afghanistan, Bosnia and Chechnya. How many English WASPs have volunteered for neo-Nazi terrorist groups to fight abroad? Again, isn’t your gut feeling on Muslim liberalism your own white liberal wishful thinking?

  4. Stephen Ball Says:

    No, it’s based on the number of Muslims I’ve met. 4/10’s of them didn’t want Sharia law… in fact 1/10 didn’t. Now, it could be I’m a liberal (I am) and I was mixing with liberal Muslims (not actually the case, but fair enough). The groups do exist, no question, but I find it much easier to believe that a right-wing thinktank has an agenda - and the Daily Mail has no credibility - than that those numbers are anywhere near realistic for UK muslims.

  5. paddyjames Says:

    Of course the problem is both could be true; you want it to be so and the think-tank definitely has an agenda. However the real issue is that when the non-muslim community (have you ever heard the views some Hindus & Sikhs have about Muslims?) says muslims care more about muslims than kaffirs they were called bigots. The UK muslim community never objected to foreign policy in Ireland, or in any other country that wasn’t muslim. However, if we accept Iraq is muslim (obviously the Ba’ath regime was secular and anti-islamic) then it’s clear the UK muslim community believes that kaffirs have no right to intervene in muslim countries. Just like Osama bin Laden.

  6. Stephen Ball Says:

    Well, a previous survey said that 15% of muslims wanted sharia law, including the milder liberal forms of sharia, and not encompassing all aspects of criminal justice. Of the muslims that made up that 15% answer, only 1% were women.

    I find it hard to believe that either the muslim women in favour of sharia jumped to match the men, or over 70% of muslim men in the UK want sharia law.

    I don’t think the “UK muslim community” is uniform enough to want anything. I’ll accept that full Sharia is completely incompatible with western democracy, and that attitudes to other nationalities, races and religions from everyone involved are pretty reprehensible, but I’m still having trouble with the figures the Daily Mail gives and the type of Sharia it implies.

  7. paddyjames Says:

    Yeah well, when it comes to the Daily Mail it actually cheers me up as it’s so obsessed with property values, gays, foreigners, Europe etc. It also has an incredible hatred of women who don’t confirm to its stereotype. However, just cheer yourself up by reading Private Eye, or to enjoy the best critique of its new age/cranky science world view.

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