Article by James Kirkup
Research published in the Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion in 2013 is useful here.
Based on BSA data and interviews with hundreds of British Muslims, it found that they were indeed more socially conservative than other Britons on gender roles in the home, divorce, premarital sex, abortion, homosexuality, and same-sex marriage.
But comparing Muslims with other Britons, it concluded that “much of the difference on socio-moral opinions was due to socio-economic disadvantage and high religiosity, both factors which predict social conservatism among all Britons and not just Muslims.”
In other words, Muslims’ moral and social attitudes, the old-fashioned and illiberal attitudes that worry so many people aren’t so very different from those of other poor and badly-educated non-Muslims.
Many commentators and politicians approach integration as a cultural question, arguing that more should be done to persuade British Muslims to accept “British values”. Perhaps we’d be better off taking an economic perspective, accepting that a better aim is making them better off.
Worried about the rising number of Muslim children in our schools? Then you should hope they pass their exams, go to good universities and get well-paid jobs. Especially the girls. Really, turn more Muslims into fully paid-up members of the Waitrose-shopping, Audi-driving, Boden-wearing middle-classes and their values will take care of themselves.