Religion as a fig leaf for racism

“The Islamophobia embraced by the BNP as a surrogate for its formally disavowed racism is by no means confined to the wasted landscapes of former working-class communities. It is deeply rooted and widespread, as was revealed by the success of Ukip (just listen to Robert Kilroy-Silk assert that “Muslims everywhere behave with equal savagery”).

“Indeed, Islamophobia is the only form of prejudice to which the middle class can readily admit: a religion which is perceived as advocating repression of women and hatred of gays renders acceptable forms of prejudice that would be unthinkable if directed against any other social group.”

Jeremy Seabrook writing in the Guardian, 23 July 2004