Iain Dale 7pm - 10pm
Maajid Nawaz: Do You Want Muslims To Integrate Or Not?
11 November 2017, 17:12
Maajid reacts to the racist outcry about one of Tesco's Christmas adverts
Supermarket Tesco has defended featuring a Muslim family in one of its Christmas adverts following a racist backlash.
The clip provoked an unexpected response. Some called it “very wrong”, others promised to boycott the supermarket, for including a four-second scene in the advert which focused on a Muslim family.
Maajid Nawaz railed against the complaints: "You'd be complaining if they were refusing to say 'Merry Christmas,' 'This is a Christian country goddammit. Why can't we say Merry Christmas?'
"Now you've got an advert featuring a Muslim family celebrating Christmas and you're still complaining. It's a lose-lose.
"What do you want us to do? Do you want us to integrate or not? Do you want us to be a part of British society or not?
"Let me tell you, I grew up, born and raised in Essex, celebrating Christmas. I grew up saying 'Merry Christmas' to my neighbours and friends. I performed in a nativity play.
"It was one of the best moments of the year and I remember it so fondly, my Muslim parents, my dad who prays five times a day, my Muslim family taught me to celebrate Christmas.
"If this is Britain and a Christian country then what is wrong with everyone celebrating Christmas?
"What happened to the story of the good samaritan? And love thy neighbour? What would Jesus do in this situation? Would he ban people from celebrating Christmas with him?
"It's so far removed from what you claim you're representing.
"The only conclusion I can come to is that this is driven, and fuelled, by a rising anti-Muslim sentiment that wants no Muslim presence in this country and will take any opportunity to decry and bemoan a semblance of a Muslim presence in this country.
"Your real agenda here is you just want a white, nativist, non-Muslim Britain. You want to hark back to that nostalgic sense you have of a country before immigration.
"That's the only conclusion I can come to because you're not happy either way.
"If Muslims refuse to integrate you complain. If Muslims integrate you complain. That tells me there's an axe to grind and you're grinding it."
Watch the full clip at the top of this page.