So the BNP won. 120,000 misguided souls took crayon in hand and doodled something which looked sufficiently like an X to elect a pair of intellectually and morally bereft, knuckle dragging, borderline nazi scumbags into political office. Their ‘we’re not racist but…’ mantra has proven effective. Maybe because of it a few too many people who feel they have legitimate grievances about immigration voted BNP as a ‘protest vote’ against the government’s perceived ‘soft’ line on migrants. This would be the same ‘soft’ line which sees families snatched from their homes at 5am and driven in dark vans to borderline prison facilities whilst their children physically piss their pants with fear, presumably?
There’s been much wringing of liberal hands over this victory, there’s also been some idiots throwing eggs at Nick Griffin MEP. This helps nothing. I can understand the desire to throw various things at the horrible little shit but it just makes his opponents look bad, whilst he continues to attempt to portray himself as a legitimate politician.
The point I’d make about the BNP is that there are too many people who subscribe to this ‘give them enough rope’ idea. They kid themselves that most people in Britain are thoughtful souls who will recognise the true motives of the BNP and, when it comes down to it, will do the right thing and take their vote elsewhere.
People like simplistic arguments. Every single political party recognises this. It’s why Gordon Brown is currently flailing like a trout in a wind tunnel trying to get people to like him. I’m not sufficiently knowledgeable about the economy to make an informed decision about his policies. Nor are most people who vote. Neither are you, unless I have fans in places I hadn’t anticipated. Lots of economists say what he’s trying to do will work, is working already – there are even suggestions that the economy may already be growing this quarter.
Point is if Brown tries to explain any of this, even if he’s given fair hearing, even if he’s not drowned out by the hang-jowelled bellering of the tories, or whinged into submission by the knee-jerk distrust of the hard left (the kind of people who would rather eat their own shit than entertain for a second the idea that their government might be getting something right), even if he overcomes these things people won’t understand what he’s talking about. And even those who do don’t know for sure if he’s right.
In the face of this a simple argument wins. And there’s no simpler argument than a bogeyman. This is why the BNP are popular. It’s a well recognised fact of evolutionary science that animals are biased towards their in-group, and wired up to be cautious, distrustful, and even fearful of something different and novel. Thus are our primitive brains pre-programmed to note that X group of people have one skin colour (same as me) and Y group have another (not the same as me). Group Y are distrusted without rational analysis. The moment people see someone from group Y behaving in a certain way they can instantly attribute one individual’s behaviour to that of the whole group. This is why people love news programs with black criminals on them. It reinforces the simple paradigm that black = criminal. Or black = sponger. Or black = threatening the racial purity (more on this in a minute) of the United Kingdom.
Of course most people can overcome these fears, at least to the point where any self-described liberal who might be willing to admit to an occasional bout of nerves when passing a group of young black men on a dark night can accept that such reactions are wrong and not base their entire world view on them. Some people can’t move on. The same way some people will refuse help overcoming a fear of spiders, others would rather cling to their animal fears than attempt to grapple with nuances. After all, if not all black people are dangerous criminals then how can you feel safe by simply getting rid of all the black people?
There is not sufficient rope for the BNP to hang themselves with. Some people are just racist. Not necessarily very racist, but racist enough to be grateful for an opportunity to express that view at the ballot box. Racist enough to happily accept the idea that all the money the government should be spending on them is somehow going into the pockets of immigrants. As opposed to shoddy Private Finance Initiatives, corporate tax breaks/loopholes, bailing out doomed industries for purely vote-saving reasons, civil service bureaucracy, an NHS overburdened by people’s unhealthy lifestyles, police forces wasting time arresting drunken friday night revellers when they could be investigating drug gangs, burglaries, and tax fraud, and etc etc.
The BNP’s arguments are appealing because people want to believe them. This is the ugly truth. This is what the left can’t accept, the media can’t admit, and the politicians hypocritically try and feed on when they need to appear more right wing. The idea of some idyllic past when everyone who lives in England was English and we all went into each other’s houses to eat scones and sing Vera Lynn songs, and everyone had a job and the only black faces were those of cheerful mining folk emerging from the pit is as appealing to some as it is transparently fictitious to anyone with a passing knowledge of… well, anything.
The outrage expressed at a recent TV documentary describing humankind’s shared ancestry on the plains of the african savannah says it all. I read one quote referring to the skull of an early human ancestor which said something like ‘european man could never have come from something like THAT’. This fingers-in-ears style of delusion characterises both the BNP’s policies and the level of engagement of their followers.
The claim ‘I’m not racist I just want racial purity in my country’ is paper thin, but goes effectively unchallenged in the media. People are comfortable saying the BNP is a racist party, but when faced with their claims that they aren’t they rarely fully engage. Often on the well-intentioned basis that to debate with them is to give them a platform. People rely on affirmations that the BNP is racist, or ad hominems (fairly robust ones I admit) about individual BNP members’ pasts, rather than tackling the substance (such as it is) of what they say.
This can’t work. By confining the BNP to the back rooms of the nation’s pubs, you allow them to project their simplistic drivel unchallenged to a receptive audience on their own terms. ‘We’re people like you, we’re not racist, we’re just worried about our country’. We need to hold their arguments to genuine scrutiny, just as we would any other party. Being dismissive feeds their conspiracy-theorist side and their underdog status. So let’s give this next bit its own line…
A policy of so-called ‘voluntary’ deportation of people born in one country to another based on their racial background alone IS A RACIST POLICY.
It has no basis in recorded history, biological science, or economic reality. It has no basis in ethics. It has no basis in pragmatism in one’s attitude to the modern world. It has no basis in the ebb and flow of the free market. It has no basis in anything other than mouth-breathing, nose picking, shit-for-fucking-brains racism.
You don’t have to be stupid to be a racist, but that doesn’t mean all racism isn’t stupid. You don’t have to consider yourself a racist to entertain racist thoughts. The fact that you don’t vomit uncontrollably when you buy a bottle of milk off an indian shopkeeper doesn’t mean you aren’t racist for wanting to send him back to what you, not he, consider his home.
All eight of my great grandparents were Irish. I am therefore 100% genetically irish. Shall I ‘go home’ to Ireland? I’ve never been there in my life. It’s preposterous. But I’m safe cos I’m not marked as different by virtue of my lighter hue.
We’ve been soft on the BNP. They need to be shown for the incompetent, embittered bigots they are. And their ‘policies’ exposed as shallow, ignorant dogma. It has to start now. There’s a real danger a general election could be called at any time, let’s not see more of these idiots voted into power.