Intolerance of the intolerant 14

Tom Pinney – 1st year History Student at University of York – writes of the UAF’s questionable attack on the thoroughly despicable Nick Griffin, the recently elected BNP leader:

It has been a sad week in British politics. The British people have elected two members of the British National Party (BNP) to European Parliament and I am personally appalled. However, not only am I appalled that just under a million British people voted for a party which has as clearly racist agenda, but also the actions of the Unite Against Fascism (UAF) group.

On Tuesday, while giving a press conference outside Parliament, BNP leader Griffin was pelted with eggs and forced to abandon the event. “Exactly what the leader of a fascist organisation deserves,” I hear you cry. And you would be right; however the reasons the UAF gave for their actions were a little, to say the least, suspect.

In an interview with the BBC, a spokesperson for the UAF claimed that the “[UAF] doesn’t believe in free speech for fascists.” As far as I’m concerned, denying anyone a platform, particularly a democratically elected representative of this country no matter what their views, is abhorrent and is reminiscent of BNP policies themselves. By giving these fascists a platform they will be exposed as the immoral, racist autocrats they are. The UAF’s opposition to freedom of speech is an insult to the population of Britain, who deserve the right to decide what they want to hear and to whom they want to listen.

Attacking these people plays into their hands, turns them into martyrs for their cause and makes them into the victim. As the BBC interviewer pointed out, Nick Griffin advocates non-violence. Now I don’t believe for a second this to be true; however using violence and aggression to push through your opinion is a method best left to be employed by extremists who lack the intelligence to engage their political opponents in open discussion. The only way to beat extremism in all its forms is free speech and an open platform for all. As Nick Griffin is often quoted as saying: “Power is the product of force and will, not of rational debate.” Wouldn’t it be ironic, if these adamant anti-fascists end up becoming their own worst nightmare – forcing their own views down people’s throats, all for the ostensible good of the country.

Posted under Uncategorized by on Thursday, June 11, 2009

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This post has 14 comments.

  • roger in florida

    Thank you for your understanding, I do sometimes forget that although I have completed my therapy, I do need to continue taking the medication.

  • Winnie

    Dear Tom,

    Congratulations on a good article. Don’t take any notice of the intemperate comments of R of Florida as I think he is just grumpy. I do think it is worth pointing out that the latest YouGov poll does show that, while the UK voters clearly want rid of Brown, and while it is true as Ikey says that nobody except the most extreme socialist-nationalist wants the BNP, not many of us want the Conservatives either. We are all sick of socialism; and Cameroon, as Simon Heffer calls him, is committed to a large state, welfare spending and Europe. We need a smaller state, more freedom and, as another article on this site about the BNP points out, equality before the law and individual freedom. Let’s shift the discussion to that: on this territory the BNP will find they sound as silly and old-fashioned as the morons who threw eggs at them.

  • British Patriot

    Following the election of two BNP MEP’s, violent thugs from the Tory and Labour backed UAF organisation, showed their hatred of free speech and democracy by physically attacking a BNP press conference outside the Houses of Parliament.
    Mr David Cameron is a signatory to the founding charter of the UAF, which has extensive links to the Socialist Workers’ Party and the Communist Party of Great Britain.
    Mr Cameron must tell his supporters if he really aligns himself with these thugs who resort to violence in the face of the democratic process.
    The reality is that the BNP is a legitimate party, campaigned democratically, peacefully and was openly elected to office. It does not matter if they disagree with the BNP – the BNP disagrees with the other parties fundamentally – but the use of violence draws the line. The Tories, Labour, Liberal Democrats and UKIP must tell the world if they support political violence or not.

  • Ikey

    Roger in Florida,
    Unfortunately, my name is Ike. People who find I’m of Jewish decent like to point out that it rhymes with ‘kike’ and so I generally go by the name ‘Ikey’. I’ve never heard the term ‘Ikey Mo’ before, but I’m now certain my name is destined to be anti-semitic…

  • roger in florida

    Don’t worry about the BNP, they are bullshit. However I must you ask an indelicate question; are you aware that “Ikey Mo” is an insulting reference to a Jewish person. If you are I applaud your sense of humor, if not you may wish to change your internet moniker.

  • Ikey

    To be fair, if you were foaming in the mouth in Bognor Regis, you’d fit in brilliantly.

    That’s a reassuring comprimise though… while the immigration issue has to be addressed, the BNP are arguing the removal of all people of all nationalities other than British – including the many groups we ourselves literally imported in to work. They are integrated into our society so intricately, and make up almost half the population of some of our major cities, i.e. Birmingham, Leicester and Bolton; a large amount of these are second generation immigrants, who were born and bred in this country, worked for this country and have paid taxes for this country.

    I understand the effect of immigration – I lived in Southampton for 18 years, and we’ve recently had a massive influx of Polish immigrants, who at one point made up 20% of the populous city centre. However, a great deal of them left over the past few years, sticking with their intention to visit and make some money so that they can return home and live a decent life… So even that in itself is different to the situation in the US.

    The large concern with the BNP in Britain is that they openly deny the holocaust, and speak out anti-semitism at every turn, as well as encouraging the petty and immature racism that our country has worked so hard to free itself from. I’m only half English; I’m of German-Jewish decent on the other side of my family, and nearly everyone I know has some ancestry from outside Britain. Their policies are directly comparable to the Third Reich (I know, I know – Godwin’s Law), and their denial of the holocaust and insistence that someone who by appearance, behaviour and upbringing seems completely British – such as myself – should be deported is not a policy of immigration control, but of racial purity. It is absurd, I am offended by it, and I do commend people for wanting to fight fascism; the UAF have the wrong approach, completely. Pelting a wannabe fascist with eggs is what everyone WANTS, but it’s not what everyone should do.

  • roger in florida

    I need to apologise for my post above. My remarks were way over the top. In trying to explain them I guess like many people I feel extremely frustrated by the political process, it is not that I expect my way to be followed, I know politics is, or should be, about resolving conflicts and compromising in a civilised manner. But when politicians tell deliberate lies for the purpose of getting elected and then do a 180 from that which they had campaigned on, or like my example of Edward Heath, who deliberately misled the people of Britain when he took Britain into the EEC. I can give you many examples; for instance I have spent thousands of dollars and hundreds of hours supporting the Republican Party here in the US, in particular to get G W Bush elected in 2000 and again in 2004. If you think that odd I refer you the opposition; Al Gore and John Kerry. One of GWB’s promises was to get some order into the mess on our Southern Border and restrict illegal immigration. 60% of the illegals in this country, of whom there are perhaps 40 million, came over during the GWB presidency. The effect of this on our cities and in particular the working class areas has been catastrophic. I have travelled widely in Mexico and believe me I do not want their society here, but it is here, the gangs, drugs, total societal breakdown in some areas of our cities. GW also promised fiscal responsibility, it is a fact now that my grandson, 3 years old, is already on the hook for some $600,000.00 in Federal debt obligation (State and Municipal not included).

    So, when I hear otherwise reasonable people supporting outfits like UAF, supporting left wing thuggery and nihilism, I get angry. Debate BNP reasonably. They say they want to deport some aliens; well apparently MI5/6 are keeping tabs on some 3000 likely islamic terroists in Britain, would they missed if they were all deported?

    I could go on, but I hope you get the drift, and, no, Ikey; I will not storming ashore at Bognor wearing a cross of St George and foaming at the mouth.

  • Ikey

    …Did Roger in Florida just unveil plans to invade England?

  • C. Gee

    Tom Pinney,
    Your point that free speech must be free for everybody is sound. It is the foundation of a free democracy. In Germany, banning Nazi parties and holocaust denial has not stopped supremacist thugs and the rise, again, of antisemitism. The left has perverted the meaning of so many words – “justice” for one – that I am not sure debate is possible, let alone an effective means to drive out extremism. We’ll see what the conservatives can do to restore meaning to the concepts of individual, nation, equality before the law.

  • C. Gee

    roger in florida:
    I am astonished, confounded, by your vituperative comments on the BNP posts. What on earth is provoking your rage? And I am not sure what your point is. In fact I am very confused. Do you see in the rise of the BNP the second coming of Hitler? Yet you plan to send guns to them? Do you think that Pinney and Ikey are too mild in their condemnation of the BNP, or too willing to let them have their say? Yet you resent their mild approval of eggs being thrown at them? Do you see them as being like the manipulative Heath, pulling the wool over our eyes while leading us astray? For whom, exactly, is the scaffold at Marble Arch?
    And what is the “meaning of ugly”?
    Rage is okay, but it has to be coherent. Personal insults and threats of violence are not acceptable.
    I offer you an opportunity to clarify your meaning without being offensive.

  • roger in florida

    Tom P.,
    Nothing like being even handed Tom, how gracious of you. Nick Griffin was trying to host a press conference, presumably an opportunity to pelt the few assembled journalists with rocks. I believe that the BNP defending their right to speak, violenty if necessary. as is plainly the case, is absolutely justified and more than that is a moral necessity.

    In as far as I can understand what the hell you are talking about, why don’t you just listen to what it is that they are saying and judge them on the merits of their case. But you don’t want to listen do you, you twerp, (bastards that they are) you just want to continue in your cocoon of lefty BS. Now you seem to be very comfortable with that nest of homosexuals in Shepherds Bush, but in fact if publicity is denied the case cannot be made. It is a remarkable fact that even with the entire media and political traitor class against them the BNP has persuaded enough people to vote for them that they won two MEP seats, now they have money to campaign, we will see the results of this in elections to Westminster. Your BS cries of racist, fascist, extremist, etc, will not stop this. And as for your justification of UAF violence,you may applaud UAF violence but I can promise you this; very quickly plans can be put in place to ship guns and explosives from the US to the BNP should they decide they need them. And just in case you don’t understand what I mean, there is a gun shop 500 yards from my house where I can legally purchase a 0.50″ caliber Barret sniper rifle, certain death at 2,500 yards.
    You continue Tom P and Ikey, idiotic children, you are going to discover the meaning of ugly.

  • Ikey

    Roger in Florida… The BNP are being offered a platform in our country, and were even allowed a space alongside other parties to outline their policies and promote themselves on the BBC. As a backlash, the free press spoke out heavily against them, they were publicly branded as extremists, and 93% of the population didn’t vote for them. In their victory speeches, they all spoke about oppression, and how the oppressed parties are hearing the voice of the people and speaking out for them – claiming that the BNP victories were not just a ‘victory for free speech’ but that the restriction of their free speech (and ‘slander’ in the media) that brought them to this level.

    Their entire platform is based around the elitist mainstream political parties making their views illegal, which attracts not just the old time racist morons, but now people against the establishment, anarchists and the like. To remove their pillar of free speech will not stop them speaking; if anything, it would verify their main selling point and draw in more sympathizers. It’s been found time and time again that if you ban someone from speaking, their voice will still be heard. Better it’s in public, actively universally condemned and challenged (to show them up for the bastards they are) than through some seedy homegrown campaign, unchallenged and plagued with propaganda. The UAF made a valid decision to pelt eggs at Nick Griffin – we all want that. They made a huge mistake in saying that any one person in a democracy has less right to free speech than another.

  • Tom P

    First off not once in my article do I claim to “know it all”, those are your words not mine. Secondly I fail to grasp the point of your reply. My article was a condemnation of both the BNP and the UAF. Do you believe the BNP violently attacking the UAF is morally acceptable?

  • roger in florida

    Wow; 1st year history student! I guess he knows it all! What the BNP needs now is an Ernst Rohm, to plan and administer assasinations and beatings to UAF (and other) thugs. You idiots just don’t get it do you, the traitors will be rooted out. Who let the 5000 (at least) islamic terroists into the UK. Christ you are pathetic, get your head out of your ass!
    “Engage their political opponents in open discussion” You stupid, stupid bastards. What did Edward Heath say when asked about how he was portraying membership in the EEC as a free trade group: The hell with them; by the time they know what it is it will be too late. The political elite in the UK, as in the US, are liars, cheats, manipulators, egomaniacs, contemptible beings, but justice has been done before, as it will be again. This is just the beginning, with any luck there will be a scaffold again at Marble Arch!