Comparing the EDL with MAC is ridiculous, in nearly all respects. For a start, the EDL has literally tens of thousands of supporters/members. (Many people sympathise with what the EDL says but still feel worried about all the negative media the EDL has received.) Muslims Against Crusades (MAC) is a group with probably less than a thousand adherents; and probably less than a hundred activists. The age range seems limited too in that most MAC are in their early 20s and late teens. The EDL may be overwhelmingly working class, but the age range really shows the EDL in a positive light. It has supporters in their teens, in their twenties and all the way up the over 60s. You never see such a varied age-level at Islamist (MAC) demos and protests.
The idea that ‘a plague should be cast on both their houses’, Nick Lowles/Searchlight’s motto, is very convenient and very wrong. Yes, there may be a clash between what the EDL says and what it sometimes does, but with MAC you don’t even get that. MAC believes in the forced creation of an Islamic state. It believes in the ‘universal Caliphate’. They sing the praises of known Islamic terrorists, such as bin Laden and many other. They propagate violent jihad whilst cleverly keeping on the right side of UK law - but only just!
I challenge people to find anything in the official literature of the EDL which encourages violence, fascism or racism. Of course this does not matter if you follow the ideologies of SWP/Unite Against Fascism and Searchlight because if you look though the prism of revolutionary Trotskyism or Communism, then the EDL are bound to come out of is as bogeymen. But the vast majority of people do not view the EDL through that Marxist prism. Thus the EDL is taken on what it says and does, not on ‘what it really means’ and what some hangers-on do without the sanction of the EDL leadership (or even of Regional Organisers).
Let’s leave interpretation, or conspiracy theories, to the far-left Searchlight/Hope Note Hate and UAF.