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“We’re black, white, Asian and Jew, BBC shame on you”

October 23, 2009
La risa del pueblo

La risa del pueblo

Many different views on Nick Griffin’s appearance on BBC’s Question Time.  Mostly negative and mostly to be forgotten by next week.  I more often than not watch Question Time, but not this week.

I strongly believe in NO PLATFORM FOR FASCISTS, NO EXCEPTIONS.  Much like Peter Hain who has repeatedly voiced his opposition to the BBC’s invitation to Nick Griffin.  In a Guardian article written after the fascist’s appearance Hain said:

For me, putting the BNP on Question Time was never about who performed best or ‘won the argument’ as if it was some kind of tv talent show. That the BNP has publicly thanked the BBC for putting it on Question Time says it all.  The BBC should be ashamed of single-handedly doing a racist, fascist party the biggest favour in its grubby history. Our black, Muslim and Jewish citizens will sleep much less easily now the BBC has legitimised the BNP by treating its racist poison as the views of just another mainstream political party when it is so uniquely evil and dangerous.

My argument was never about censoring or banning the BNP as BBC bosses have disingenuously maintained.    It was always about handing them a badge of legitimacy and respectability by lining up Nick Griffin — who has a conviction for inciting racial hatred — alongside democratic party figures as is if he and his party were just another one of them.

Those who supported the BBC just don’t get it.  In Griffin’s words they have hit the ‘big time’, achieved the lift off they craved.

• Peter Hain MP is Secretary of State for Wales

By changing the format of the show, the BBC tried to make it into a special – an opportunity to get the odious politician.  It made me feel uneasy reading the twitter thread (I didn’t watch the show – I’m not a hypocrite), and this comment below the article linked to above sums up my uneasyness (I’ve edited an unnecessary comment on Griffin’s appearance):

All I saw was a shifty, (clearly) uncomfortable, less-than-polished, under-rehearsed spokesman for the native “folk communities” making a complete arse of himself and his intellectual platform

I, also, saw [… him] attacked by representatives of a discredited and bankrupt political class that has, largely, been abandoned by scores of white working-class communities across the country. These same communities will rally round the BNP and Mr Griffin . . . it will be a sympathy vote for the “little guy” fighting against the corrupt and uncrupulous in their bear-pit

Mr Griffin walked away this evening intellectually-exposed, but, having enhanced his credentials as the un-official spokesman for a section of the electorate that will identify with the politics of the BNP stronger than ever before

Nothing to celebrate really.  Griffin is an intellegent man, what with his Cambridge education and all, so it did surprise me a little that he came off as stupid.  Are the BBC going to make a special each and every time they invite the BNP onto Question Time?  Of course they won’t.  But it’s all about the ratings isn’t it.  Pissed that I paid for this programme to be made.  And I still don’t understand why Griffin didn’t just join the tory party – it would have been perfectly acceptable with his views.

Btw, the title of this post was one of the chants demonstrators employed outside Television Centre.  I’d like to thank each and every one of them for travelling to London, and other BBC centres across the UK, and speaking for me today.

Unite Against Fascism were one of the organisers for today’s demos, and write this on their website:

Up to 2,000 anti-fascist demonstrators turned out on the streets of west London today to protest outside the BBC Centre against BNP leader Nick Griffin being invited on to the BBC’s flagship Question Time programme. The crowd was young, lively and multi-racial – a manifestation of the society that Griffin and his gang of Nazi thugs would like to see crushed.

The Unite Against Fascism demonstration spilled out into the road, bringing traffic to a standstill and delaying the start of the filming of Question Time. The size of protest led Griffin to refuse to use the main gate to the BBC. He was smuggled in through a back entrance instead. Across the country people held local anti-fascist protests at their BBC offices.

A rally in the streets at the London demo heard from speakers including Andrew Slaughter MP, Jeremy Corbyn MP and Jerry Dammers, founder of The Specials. Trade union leaders also backed the protest and spoke at the rally, including Jeremy Dear of the NUJ, Gerry Morrissey of Bectu, Christine Blower from the NUT, Steve Hart from Unite and Tony Kearns of the CWU – representing postal workers who started their strike today.

Unite Against Fascism called the demonstration as an expression of the widespread public anger at the BBC’s decision to roll out the red carpet to Griffin. We do not accept the BBC’s justifications for this decision. Griffin is a convicted racist and lifelong Nazi. The BBC’s public duty to protect our multi-racial society should take precendence over its hunt for ratings and fake controversy.

Weyman Bennett, joint secretary of UAF, said: “Today’s demonstration was a brilliant example of a fine tradition of mass mobilisation against the Nazis. This is the tradition that has defeated fascism in the past – the Blackshirts in the 1930s and the National Front in the 1970s. In contrast, giving platforms to the fascists simply boosts their profile, as happened to Jean-Marie Le Pen in France in the 1980s.

“We should remember that friends of David Copeland, the London nailbomber, said he was a normal person before he joined the BNP. How many more David Copelands have joined the BNP tonight as a result of the prestigious platform the BBC has granted to Griffin?

“Griffin’s supporters – his army of racist thugs – will draw strength from his appearance, and they will use this confidence to get on to the streets and attack ethnic minorities. For make no mistake – it is black and Asian people who will pay the price for the BBC’s disgraceful decision in the weeks and months to come.”

Harpymarx was there and has pics.

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One Comment leave one →
  1. October 25, 2009 16:02

    I’m surprised the BNP scum even have time left to hate queers, given all of their other prejudices.

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