OPINION: The Elephant In The Room
Another day, another terrorist attack, another opportunity for the mainstream media to totally fail. Oddly, but not surprisingly, the BBC seemed more concerned about creating a rift between Theresa May and Donald Trump than discussing real issues connected to the Parsons Green attack. Islam is, of course, the real issue connected to the attack as it is so many others and, love her or loathe her, Anne Marie Waters has made it hard to ignore the issue during the leadership election. Whatever the merits and demerits of her candidacy and indeed its validity, this is simply a debate that had to happen, that we have had to have for a substantial amount of time. The infamous Integration Agenda shows that we have been purely reactive to the issue as it arises and our response has been collectively hamfisted.
Hamfistedness can still be seen in how we respond. Inexplicably, Peter Whittle decided what would really help is if we all got off our phones and unplugged our headphones and travelled on The Tube like a gang of hyper-anxious meerkats. Thankfully, his responses got better as the day wore on and he made some worthy resource based points but unhelpfully skirted around mentioning Islam at all and equally unhelpfully said it was wrong people should be “frightened” going about their daily business when he had just said they should totally adjust their behaviour on The Tube and be on high-alert.
If Ms Waters wins I am sure there will be plenty of recriminations. However, her fellow candidates will have to accept the lions share of the responsibility. The kind of evasiveness outlined above is unhelpful and has strengthened Ms Waters immeasurably as have the numerous attempts to silence her organisationally which will to her supporters and a wider grouping who are understandably and completely rationally hostile too or concerned about Islam too looked like an attempt to silence and belittle them too.
Unashamedly I would argue John Rees Evans has approached this issue and Ms Waters the right way. He has been courteous, respectful of her views and above all acknowledged what be blatantly obvious to anyone with eyes to see, SHE HAS A POINT. Whoever wins this election will have to acknowledge that the views of Ms Waters do chime with a substantial number of Kippers and maybe they are a minority but they are a sizeable one at that; they cannot be ignored marginalised or spat upon because that is exactly what the establishment does. You may not go as far as she does and call Islam evil, though personally, I think the evidence this is the case is overwhelming (please note I am talking about ISLAM not MUSLIMS and postpone that lefty freak-out) but you cannot deny there is an issue here that must be discussed by any Party that is serious about contending in politics. Anyone who thinks this is not the case needs to remember people are dying while we twiddle our thumbs and worry about how a already hostile media will see us. Hopefully that fact would inject some much needed perspective into the worldview of the naysayers. Refusing to discuss this is to deeply let down not just the currently voiceless and marginalised in the Party but also the wider country and to behave no better than the rotting, corrupt establishment we so rightly oppose.
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