Scottish Muslims Say Culture of Drinking a Barrier to Integration

June 5, 2005

Source: Sunday Herald

On June 5, 2005 the Sunday Herald reported, "Young Muslim men born in Scotland do not feel completely Scottish because they believe the prevailing drinking culture excludes them... The belief among male Muslims aged 16-25 that drinking alcohol and going to nightclubs is a major part of Scottish culture acts as a barrier to feeling completely Scottish, according to the study. Some of the interviewees spoke of how the drinking culture, described by one as a 'Scottish trademark,' further excludes young Muslim men by increasing the likelihood of racist abuse or attacks. Dr Peter Hopkins, a research fellow in the university’s Centre for the Child and Society, said: 'The participants see drinking as an integral part of life in Scotland, not just among young people but among Scots generally. Some mentioned that the drinking culture actually encouraged racism as they felt that people were more likely to be racist if they had a drink in them. Many of their comments appear to suggest that the young men think that they would feel more Scottish, and be less likely to experience racism...But they were drawing on a stereotype that drinking is important to all Scots.'"

See also: Islam, International