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EDL Report from Faithmatters.org

EDL Report from Faithmatters.org

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Published by faceless
An extensive report on the divisiveness of the EDL in relation to religous cohesion.
An extensive report on the divisiveness of the EDL in relation to religous cohesion.

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Categories:Types, Research
Published by: faceless on Sep 28, 2012
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial

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05/13/2014

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1
A STUDY OFTHE ENGLISH DEFENCE LEAGUE:
What draws people of faith to right-wing organisationsand what effects does the EDL have oncommunity cohesion and interfaith relations?

H.S.Lane
Reviewed by Dr. Matthew Feldman
 
2
Foreword
Thisreport,thesecondintheseriesofreportsontheEnglishDefenceLeague(EDL)looksattheimpactoftheircampaignsonfaithcommunitiesandthosewithinsomefaithcommunitieswhopromoteandsupporttheEDL.TheassumptionisthatpeopleoffaithwillnotbedrawntogroupsliketheEDLandtheirdesiretocausedivisionandinflametensionsinlocalareasinourcountry.Yet,thisisnotthecaseassomewithinfaithcommunitiesbelievethatbyallyingwiththeEDL,theycanmarginaliseandstigmatizeanotherfaithcommunity,namelyMuslimcommunitiesintheUnitedKingdom.Theoldadageof‘myenemy’senemyismyfriend,’ringstruetothem.TheEDLmainlyusesChristiansymbolisminitspromotionandpublicitymaterial.ThefactthatthevastmajorityofEDLsympathisersdonotregularlyattendchurchisofnosignificancetothem.NoristhefactthatmanyEDLsympathisershavenorealmotivationtowardsfaithapartfromahatredofMuslims.TheuseofChristiansymbolismintheireyesisawayofengagingothersintheircause,whilstsupposedlysendingamessagetoMuslimsthattheyarethe‘true’defendersofChristianity.Thisnarrative,whilsttwistedandcorruptingthetruemessagesofChristianitywillnodoubtresonatewithsomeandbuildingcommunityresilienceagainstsuchhateisthereforekey.WesalutekeyfaithbasedgroupsliketheBoardofDeputiesofBritishJews,theCommunitySecurityTrustandtheSikhfocussedTurbanCampaignwhohavestoodupandforcefullydenouncedthoseliketheEDLwhoseektoattractsupportfrombelieversinthesefaiths.WealsostandbythoseliketheBishopofStAlbansandBishopTonyRobinsonoftheKirkleesFaithForumfortheirstanceagainstpromotersofhateliketheEDL.Together,faithcommunitiesareapowerfulforceforgoodinourcountry.However,wemustnevertakeforgrantedthatthiscohesionwillalwaysbeagiven.Itmustbeworkedupondayandnightastheforcesofhateanddarknesspressusfromallsides.FiyazMughalOBE–Founder&Director,FaithMatters,September2012

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