The Corner

British Multiculturalism Refuses to Die

Hazel Blears, Tony Blair’s minister responsible for these things, has come up with the bright idea of “rebranding” ethnic groups by hyphenating “British” onto the end of their names. So does the multiculturalism virus continue to infect Blair’s government. This is all the more irritating when one reads that senior Muslim figures in the UK seem to have realized the problem:

Dr Ghayasuddin Siddiqui, head of the Muslim Parliament, gave warning that identifying people by their ethnic background would create racial ghettoes.

He said: “Nobody cares for labels. We have to create a stake-holding society and an inclusive society. Unless you feel you have a stake in the society, you will never be proud of it.

“What’s important is that the form of multiculturalism that we have pursued hasn’t worked, so we have to try to think of new ways”…

Sir Iqbal Sacranie, general secretary of the Muslim Council of Britain, dismissed the idea as a retrograde step that looked at people in terms of colour. “What of the second generations? Why should they be defined as other than ‘British’?” he asked. “These forms of identity based on ethnic background have been tried in the past and have failed.”

The next step, of course, is for Dr. Siddiqui to realize that having a body called the “Muslim Parliament” isn’t exactly conducive to an “inclusive society,” but it’s nice to see that the Muslim leadership is slightly more aware to the need for assimilation than the Home Office.

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