A large proportion of the country believes that the multicultural experiment has failed and more than half the population would be strongly opposed to a mosque being built in their neighborhood.
Only 25% a of Britons feel positive towards Muslims, while more than a third report feeling “cool” towards them. (Gee…I wonder why?)
The findings, to be published later this month in the respected British Social Attitudes Survey, show that far greater opposition to Islam than to any other faith and reveal that most people are willing to limit freedom of speech in an attempt to silence religious extremists.
David Voas, professor of population studies at Manchester University, who analysed the data, said that people were becoming intolerant towards all religions because of “the degree to which Islam is perceived as a threat to social cohesion.” He said: “Muslims deserve to be the focus of policy on social cohesion, because no other group elicits so much disquiet.”
The “size and visibility” of Islamic communities has led to serious concerns about their impact on British society, Prof Voas concludes. “This apparent threat to national identity (or even, some fear, to security) reduces the willingness to accommodate free expression.
Researchers interviewed 4,486 people for the survey, which is published annually by the National Centre for Social Research. The report describes a high level of unease regarding the UK’s Muslim population, estimated at around two million, with many people considering that it poses a threat to the nation’s identity.
While 55% say that they would be “bothered” by the construction of a large mosque in their community, only 15% would be similarly concerned by a large church. UK TELEGRAPH