Former Archbishop of Canterbury is ruffling British cultural and religious elites by warning against uncontrolled Islamic immigration that threatens Britain's "very ethos or DNA."
"The idea that Britain can continue to welcome with open arms immigrants who immediately establish their own tribunals to apply Sharia, rather than make use of British civil law, is deeply socially divisive," Lord Carey warned in a January 7 Times of London op-ed. "The last thing any of us want is ghettos. And while we don't expect groups to assimilate, there must be a willingness on their part to integrate with the rest of British society." Carey was appointed to his former position by Margaret Thatcher and, in retirement, has sometimes offered a corrective to the left-leaning proclivities of his successor, Archbishop Rowan Williams.
In America, as in Britain, left-leaning religious groups, most recently the U.S. National Association of Evangelicals, are urging more liberalized immigration laws. In Britain, the stakes are higher, with proportionally much higher levels of Muslim immigration, creating pockets of urban culture where Islamic mores prevail. Carey has joined a coalition of British parliamentarians urging sharper controls on immigration. But somewhat unlike the parliamentary group, the former head of the Church of England and the global Anglican Communion is specifically urging that immigrants affirm Britain's democratic heritage.