An Updated Statement (For Those Who Like That Kind Of Thing) : Why We Fight


I think it's been a while since we last posted a definitive summary of where we are, what we do and why we do it - and it's well overdue that we do so.

So if you seek a raison d'etre for our work, here it is. 

We're happy to discuss this matter on Facebook, where it will be posted on our page for all to comment on. 



In the past, only the most brazen and daring would dare to state racist, homophobic, antisemitic, islamophobic, or nationalistic views in public, but history shows that there is a constant percentage of people who hold such views. Most, rightly fearful of public opinion, would keep their hatred to themselves.

But such people have always been with us.

Such people, now openly expressing in public what previously was only muttered in private, or wrapped up in "humour" or "banter", now feel they are freely able to say what they think, however horrific, however offensive - and however illegal.

Why has this happened ?

Because they have been emboldened to do so, validated in doing so, and lauded by their peers when they have done so. Hatred has ceased to be socially unacceptable, often under the veneer of 'Free Speech'. How did we get to a place where hatred was okay ?

Who has emboldened them?

The public figures, politicians and celebrities who have stated such views and not only been allowed to do so, but cheered.

Once, Oswald Mosley was knocked the ground in Liverpool and Manchester for his hatred. Today, politicians such as Nigel Farage, Geert Wilders, Matteo Salvini, Viktor Orban, Donald Trump and yes, even Boris Johnson and Priti Patel are applauded by far too many for stating the same things.

Now, politicians weaponise that hatred for what ? For political gain, for political office, for public support, and in many cases, ride it all the way to positions of influence and power.

Who has emboldened them?

Once, a racist celebrity or public figure would have their career ended. Now, they defend their views by claiming that they are merely "expressing an opinion" or 'want to have a dialogue'.

Who has emboldened them?

The 'Think Tanks' masquerading as charities or academic institutions, which are in many cases groups of like-minded individuals, with the power of collusion, funded - always secretly thanks to their 'academic' or 'charitable' status -  by the wealthy, to promote their political and racial views.

Who has given them a platform ?

The media, increasingly, inviting them on as 'an alternate viewpoint'. (The media, of course, should be balanced in all matters but 'an opposing view' is not a licence to platform extremists for ratings)

Who has given them a platform ?

Social Media, which has become the battlefront. The Wild West of Openly Expressed Hatred. (Social Media should of course be free and open, but not to the point where it is used to incite hatred and violence. That is why Social Media companies have Terms and Conditions, except networks such as Gab and Parler who have little in the way of restrictions and choose to enforce the ones they do have, even less.)

The problem is this:

This social acceptance of hatred has resulted precisely BECAUSE a platform has been given to such people. It has become almost the norm. (Free Speech is a wonderful thing, and a right to be enshrined and protected, but when it is used as a shield to incite hatred and violence, even Free Speech has a limit which when crossed, must be addressed. And that limit, that line, is espoused in National Law. Even in the USA, with the First Amendment, 'Free Speech' is not truly free, nor should it ever be.)

And the result ?

The increase in support for Right Wing, Far Right Wing and Extremist Right Wing political parties across Europe and the USA. Many of them making statements and promoting policies which have shades of Berlin in the 1930s for those of us who have studied the history. These people would have been booed and hissed off the stage a decade ago. Now they are regarded almost as heroic.

The increase in Right Wing Terrorism, the now gravest threat to security in the UK (Head of UK Counter-Terrorism Force, Europe (Europol) and the USa (FBI, the Separtment of Justice, and Homeland Security)

It is NOT so much that 'Far Right' views and policies have become accepted. It is more - and worse - that such views and policies are worded, spun and presented in such a way that they seem benign. The 'Far Right' have rebranded themselves as the 'Common-Sense Centre'. The range of policies that a politician can recommend without appearing too extreme to gain or keep public office - known as The Overton Window - has shifted, and not for the better.

Which is why we must keep fighting this kind of hatred. Not to defeat it - I sadly suspect we never will - but just to keep a lid on it. It's a game of Whack-A-Mole, writ large.

In past times, that task was carried out by both the media and the public. Now, much of the media is complicit, and many of the public are either oblivious, feel exhausted by it, powerless to stop it - or are gleefully joining in.

There are some who say, perhaps rightly, that we cannot ever really defeat Racism. We can, however, make it once again socially unacceptable. And that must be our goal.

We stand on the shoulders of those who fought before us, and hopefully inspire those who will come after us. It is probably a battle that will never be ever won, but nevertheless must be fought with every breath.



As ever, if you wish to help us in our work of spreading the message, identifying extremists, exposing their hatred and countering their arguments, you can support us by considering a small donation here, so that we can keep doing what we do.

 

Donations will be used purely for maintenance, hosting and licensing costs of this site and our Social Media accounts, teaching and advising other groups on Social Media, along with transport to events and involvement in other activities with other allied groups.

Thank you :-)