Denmark: Half of the second-generation immigrants think criticism of religion should be banned

 By ARTHUR LYONS  18 October 2019

A new survey in Denmark has revealed that nearly half of second-generation think that criticizing religion should be banned outright.

The Danish 2019 Citizenship Survey found that 48 percent of second-generation immigrants believe that criticizing religion should be banned by the state, compared to 42 percent of first-generation immigrants and under 20 percent of ethnic Danes, the Danish newspaper Kristeligt Dagblad reports.

The survey also revealed that there’s a growing number of immigrants who ‘feel’ Danish. 70 percent of first-generation immigrants who were surveyed reported ‘feeling’ Danish, compared to 58 percent in 2011. As for their descendants, 82 percent reported ‘feeling’ Danish, compared to 71 percent in 2011.

For Karen Nielsen Breidahl, a professor at the Institute of Politics and Society at Aalborg University, the question of whether religion should be able to be criticized has become a trusty indicator of how well an immigrant has integrated into Danish society. 

“I don’t think that this question in itself reflects whether you are against Danish or democratic values. When people are presented with such a question, few bring it back to the ideals of the Enlightenment. Instead, the answer reflects a current debate, where the divide is great,” Breidahl said.

In the past few decades, the proportion of immigrants living in Denmark has increased substantially. As of 2017, immigrants comprised 12.9 percent of the total population in Denmark.

Given the nature of most recent immigration, it’s probably not a surprise that Islam is the largest minority in the country, with Muslims now comprising over 5 percent of the Danish population


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