Tags: Islam

Living better together: French secularism risks being destroyed by political ambition

Living better together: French secularism risks being destroyed by political ambition

Posted: Thu, 25 Aug 2016 by Terry Sanderson

Despite occasional conflicts, France's tradition of secularism has served both social cohesion and religious freedom well. Terry Sanderson argues that misusing secularism for political aims risks undermining both.

The French ban on so-called burkinis –... Read More »

Tags: Community Cohesion, Events, France, Islam

Conflating abuse with criticism of Islam risks a return to a UK blasphemy law

Conflating abuse with criticism of Islam risks a return to a UK blasphemy law

Posted: Thu, 18 Aug 2016 by Benjamin Jones

The BBC and Demos have published an accidental case-study in why we should all stop using the meaningless and sinister word 'Islamophobia'.

The BBC has made much of a report from Demos warning that thousands of 'Islamophobic' tweets are sent in English every... Read More »

Tags: Anti-Muslim Bigotry, Freedom of Expression, Islam

Living better together: What role do Muslims have in building a secular UK?

Living better together: What role do Muslims have in building a secular UK?

Posted: Tue, 09 Aug 2016 by Tehmina Kazi

When people learn I run a secularist charity, many are confused about what secularism means and its consequences for non-Christians in the UK, writes Tehmina Kazi of British Muslims for Secular Democracy.

For the last seven years, I have been the director of... Read More »

Tags: Community Cohesion, Events, Islam

Press regulator rules ‘honour’ killings are not Islamic

Press regulator rules ‘honour’ killings are not Islamic

Posted: Thu, 21 Jul 2016 by Benjamin Jones

The press regulator has issued a troubling ruling that the Mail Online must state that Islam "does not support" 'honour killings'. Why is IPSO giving religious rulings to protect the reputation of Islam?

What business is it of the press regulator what interpretation... Read More »

Tags: Islam, Violence against Women

62% say there is “no place in UK politics for religious influence of any kind”

62% say there is “no place in UK politics for religious influence of any kind”

Posted: Mon, 23 May 2016 by Benjamin Jones

The overwhelming majority of Britons believe religion should not "influence" politics in the UK, and majorities of all religious believers except Muslims agree.

A ComRes poll commissioned by the Ahmadiyya Muslim Youth Association has found broad support for... Read More »

Tags: Islam, statistics

Muslim support for theocracy, not terrorism, is the real threat to confront

Muslim support for theocracy, not terrorism, is the real threat to confront

Posted: Thu, 14 Apr 2016 by Benjamin Jones

The ICM poll on 'What British Muslims Really Think' shows clearly that widespread support for Islamic theocracy, not terrorism, is the real, long-term threat to British society, argues Benjamin Jones.

Much of the discussion about the "What British Muslims Really... Read More »

Tags: Islam, Statistics

Britain’s first women’s mosque: rise of girl power or a Muslim women’s ghetto?

Britain’s first women’s mosque: rise of girl power or a Muslim women’s ghetto?

Posted: Tue, 08 Mar 2016 by Aisha Nabi

Muslim women are no different to their Western sisters who fought their battle for equality decades ago, writes Aisha Nabi. Muslim women are fighting the same evil as Western sisters are today – sexism, but what is the best way of achieving gender equality?... Read More »

Tags: Gender Equality, Islam

The niqab in schools: An argument for prohibition

The niqab in schools: An argument for prohibition

Posted: Thu, 04 Feb 2016 by Sadikur Rahman

Sadikur Rahman argues that the case for banning full face veils in schools extends far beyond whether or not they present a barrier to learning.

The niqab, or full-face veil, is once again in the news after the chief inspector of schools, Sir Michael Wilshaw,... Read More »

Tags: Education, Islam, Niqab

David Cameron is right to raise the integration of Muslim women

David Cameron is right to raise the integration of Muslim women

Posted: Mon, 18 Jan 2016 by National Secular Society

The hysterical response to David Cameron's proposals to help the most disadvantaged Muslim women learn English and improve their lot in life will do far more to alienate British Muslims than anything he has actually said.

According to Government figures 22%... Read More »

Tags: Community Cohesion, Islam

The media now say ‘Islamophobia’ without question; but insist on the “so-called Islamic State”

The media now say ‘Islamophobia’ without question; but insist on the “so-called Islamic State”

Posted: Thu, 10 Sep 2015 by Benjamin Jones

Reporting of the deeply troubling rise in anti-Semitic and anti-Muslim attacks demonstrates that the term 'Islamophobia' has, worryingly, been widely accepted by the media.

The recent media coverage which accompanied the release of worrying hate crime statistics... Read More »

Tags: Community Cohesion, Islam, Islamism

We need a Robert Conquest figure to demolish the pro-Islamist left

We need a Robert Conquest figure to demolish the pro-Islamist left

Posted: Thu, 06 Aug 2015 by Benjamin Jones

The late historian Robert Conquest exposed the true horror of Stalinism; and the 21st century badly needs a similar expose to break the pro-Islamist left away from their cruel sympathy with another totalitarian system, argues Benjamin Jones.

Robert Conquest,... Read More »

Tags: Islam, Politics

Misrepresenting concerns about Islam won’t make society more cohesive

Misrepresenting concerns about Islam won’t make society more cohesive

Posted: Wed, 08 Jul 2015 by Benjamin Jones

Recent polling found that 56% of Britons think Islam poses a threat to democracy. However this finding has been misrepresented to suggest that British people think Muslims themselves are a "threat".

When asked, "does Islam (not fundamentalist groups) pose... Read More »

Tags: Community Cohesion, Islam, Statistics

Preacher James McConnell faces prosecution for calling Islam “Satanic"- the state again tramples over free expression

Preacher James McConnell faces prosecution for calling Islam “Satanic"- the state again tramples over free expression

Posted: Thu, 18 Jun 2015 by Benjamin Jones

Free speech for all is threatened once more by the senseless prosecution of another Christian preacher. His religious freedom is the same liberty that defends secularists, atheists, people of all religions and none.

"Islam is heathen, Islam is satanic, Islam... Read More »

Tags: Christianity, Freedom of Expression, Islam, Religion & Belief

Anti-Muslim bigotry and the problem, with ‘Islamophobia’

Anti-Muslim bigotry and the problem, with ‘Islamophobia’

Posted: Thu, 11 Jun 2015 by Benjamin Jones

Islamists are again using the victims of anti-Muslim bigotry to advance their agenda. Once again, a British university has aided this project in a conference on 'Islamophobia' which undermined and demonised ex-Muslims as "McCarthyites".

Many, many Muslims are... Read More »

Tags: Anti-Muslim Bigotry, Freedom of Expression, Islam, Sectarianism, Universities

Christian leaders need to prioritise their targets

Christian leaders need to prioritise their targets

Posted: Thu, 28 May 2015 by Benjamin Jones

It is tiresomely common to have some Christian leaders describing secularism as intolerant, bigoted, militant or aggressive. At a time when Christians are being met with genuine persecution around the world, Benjamin Jones argues that Christian leaders should... Read More »

Tags: 'Militant' secularism, Church & State, Islam

You can never kill ideas: an anonymous blogger on the deaths of secularists in Bangladesh

You can never kill ideas: an anonymous blogger on the deaths of secularists in Bangladesh

Posted: Thu, 14 May 2015 by Anonymous

Following the recent wave of assassinations targeting atheist and secular writers in Bangladesh, we publish the thoughts of a British secularist of Bangladeshi origin – and his message to their murderers.

Ananda Bijoy Das was killed just two days ago... Read More »

Tags: Freedom of Expression, Islam

Secularism in 2050: huge changes in population make a secular UK even more urgent

Secularism in 2050: huge changes in population make a secular UK even more urgent

Posted: Fri, 10 Apr 2015 by Benjamin Jones

As huge demographic changes and the rapid increase in the Muslim population reshape religion in the UK, Benjamin Jones makes the case that secularism is the best guarantee of future freedoms for believers and atheists alike.

By 2050, 1-in-9 Britons will be... Read More »

Tags: Christianity, Church & State, Islam, Multiculturalism, Statistics

Why we should stop saying ‘Islamophobia’

Why we should stop saying ‘Islamophobia’

Posted: Thu, 02 Apr 2015 by Benjamin Jones

The bigoted views of Islamists and anti-Muslim demagogues must be challenged, but the term 'Islamophobia' only serves to confuse the issues and shut down debate, argues Benjamin Jones.

The NUS Women's Conference made headlines recently after the organisers... Read More »

Tags: Anti-Muslim Bigotry, Freedom of Expression, Islam

Charlie Hebdo: a perspective one month on

Charlie Hebdo: a perspective one month on

Posted: Wed, 18 Feb 2015 by Sadikur Rahman

25 years after the Rushdie Affair, one month after the atrocities in Paris and days after the attack on a free speech seminar in Copenhagen, Sadikur Rahman looks at what lessons free expression activists and opponents have taken.

Another European city, this... Read More »

Tags: Freedom of Expression, Islam

A duty to mock

A duty to mock

Posted: Mon, 16 Feb 2015 by Manfredi La Manna

Manfredi La Manna argues that the response to the Charlie Hebdo murders has exposed unpalatable truths in both the conservative and progressive camps.

The latest cack-handed intervention by the Pope, exempting religions from the list of acceptable targets for... Read More »

Tags: Freedom of Expression, Islam

BBC Panorama, “the battle for British Islam” and the nonsense of “peaceful” or “violent” Muslims

BBC Panorama, “the battle for British Islam” and the nonsense of “peaceful” or “violent” Muslims

Posted: Thu, 22 Jan 2015 by Benjamin Jones

NSS communications officer Benjamin Jones argues that the problem of Islamism is obscured by politicians and others simplistically categorising Muslims as either 'peaceful' or 'violent'.

On 12 January, BBC Panorama featured British Muslims campaigning for a... Read More »

Tags: Freedom of Expression, Islam, Secularism

Charlie Hebdo Editorial: Je Suis Charlie Means Je Suis Secularism

Charlie Hebdo Editorial: Je Suis Charlie Means Je Suis Secularism

Posted: Thu, 15 Jan 2015 by Admin

This is a translation of the editorial from the first Charlie Hebdo published since the Paris attacks. It is reproduced here in solidarity with Charlie Hebdo.

For a week now, Charlie, an atheist magazine, has accomplished more miracles than all the saints and... Read More »

Tags: Freedom of Expression, Islam, Secularism

British media fails the free speech test

British media fails the free speech test

Posted: Fri, 09 Jan 2015 by Sadikur Rahman

The British print and media press's response to the Charlie Hebdo attack has involved victim blaming, obfuscation and self-censorship, argues Sadikur Rahman.

If there was ever a time when the British print and media press should have shown courage and strength... Read More »

Tags: Freedom of Expression, Islam

Britain First – foot soldiers of a ‘Christian Nation’?

Britain First – foot soldiers of a ‘Christian Nation’?

Posted: Mon, 08 Dec 2014 by Alastair Lichten

When mainstream politicians endorse the 'Christian Nation' narrative they feed both Muslim and Christian persecution complexes and pander to the far-right, argues Alastair Lichten.

Elements in the current government like to promote the dog whistle message that... Read More »

Tags: Christianity, Community Cohesion, Discrimination, Islam, Multiculturalism

Who are the true Muslims – all or none?

Who are the true Muslims – all or none?

Posted: Thu, 13 Nov 2014 by Matthew Syed

Moderate believers argue that Isis has misinterpreted the Koran. But no one can determine who is right or wrong, argues Matthew Syed.

Who are the real Muslims? Who are the bona fide, authentic, true-to-the-core followers of the Islamic faith? Now, that might... Read More »

Tags: ISIS, Islam, Islamism, Tony Blair