Why Muslim Political Participation should be a concern for Liberal States?

Democratic legitimacy argument

Democratic legitimacy requires equitable participation of all groups in public life. The contributions of legally residing Muslim immigrants, at least as taxpayers, to a country’s prosperity justify their right to influence public debates and political decisions in the country of their residence. Participation in political movements, trade unions, NGOs, representation by media and access to national human rights institutions are a part of Muslim immigrants’ ability to influence decision-making processes at political and societal levels.

Democratic security argument

Social tensions arising from the exclusion of Muslim immigrants from the benefits of society exist in many countries. Failure to deal adequately with these tensions can lead to further isolation and deprivation, which can in the end provide a breeding ground for crime and violence. A policy based on integration which respects the Muslim immigrants’ right to maintain their own identity, as distinct from policies based on assimilation or separation, is likely to be the best way of avoiding tensions. The aim of integration should be a State which all groups consider their common home where all have equal opportunities to participate.  Participation, therefore, is a key pillar of integration. 

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