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Responses to Legoland

I suspect that some of those indignantly protesting against Legoland’s (apparent) hosting of a private event aimed at Muslim visitors aren’t themselves going out of their way to foster social cohesion. Here’s one response:

Legoland Windsor To Host Muslim Only Day On March 9th via @KafirCrusaders wtf! time for a mass killing in europe!

But, although (by contrast) entirely peaceful and law abiding, the website advertising the proposed family fun day on 9 March, sponsored by the Muslim Research and Development Foundation,* might seem to imply an unwillingness to mix with different communities:

FamilyFunDay is a family centred event where we aim to bring Halal entertainment/environments for Muslim families in the West. The aim is to provide a true alternative in which like minded families can enjoy safe and enjoyable time while at the same time conducive to their faith.

Legoland is a theme park aimed at families, and it hardly seems necessary to exclude (or strongly discourage) non-Muslim visitors in order to attract Muslim families to the site.

Fiyaz Mughal of Tell MAMA commented:

My view is that cohesion is fundamentally based on more mixing of communities and not less. This means that events like this are unhelpful in the long term since all they do is to place the perception in the minds of others, that Muslims are somewhat different. They are not, one element of their identity involves believing in Allah or God through Islam. That is it.

However, as so often happens with such stories, new information released over the course of the day slightly changes the picture. It’s important to note that Legoland would not normally be open on 9 March as this is off-season.  The park seems to be making a special dispensation for a private event, rather than excluding anyone.  If there is anything suboptimal in this event, from a social cohesiveness point of view, trying to stop it going ahead seems unlikely to improve matters.

*Update: This organisation is linked to Haitham-al-Haddad, whose views have been widely criticised, and who has been the target of Hope not Hate’s campaigning.