See it, say it, sorted. What makes it any different when it comes to racial abuse?
Over the last few weeks, the Conservative party have deliberated who would make the best Prime Minister for our country. In a time of great uncertainty, who will be able to handle the Brexit instability? Who will be able to act accordingly for the ongoing climate catastrophe? Importantly, who will best represent the people? White, privately educated, men… apparently. And the toss up came down to Bigot Johnson or Jeremy *unt.
The campaign spotlighted racism from the get go. However, it was towards the end where the language exposed even more red flags. When questioned over his opinion of Donald Trump’s remarks, towards four congress women to ‘go back’, Hunt pointblank refused to answer whether this was racist. Instead, he used his diplomatic position as a quick (and lame) escape route, along with his Chinese wife and children. Strange then, that a man who would be ‘appalled’ if his children were to be subjected to such treatment, fails to locate his own backbone to stand up to a creature spreading hatred to others.
When Johnson was asked his opinion on Trump’s comment, he turned to how important the US and UK relationship is to him. He did manage to state that Trump cannot use this kind of language, but refused to label it as racist. This is typical Boris behaviour; spiel on about his own personal position and manage to say something which sounds good, without actually addressing it for what it is. But what more could be expected of a man who openly exclaimed that Libya would soon be the ‘next Dubai’ once the dead bodies were cleaned out?
I am sorry to say that Boris Johnson is now our Prime Minister – with 99.86% not granting their blessing – and ridiculously enough, more people voting for permanent Peanut Butter Kit Kat Chunky’s in 2012.
Despite only briefly being in office, Johnson has already made two aims very clear. Firstly, he says he will deliver Brexit by the 31st October and leave with no deal if all else fails. Secondly, he will defeat Jeremy Corbyn. Corbyn has now been the Labour leader under three Conservative leaders, three Green leaders, three Liberal Democrat leaders, seven UKIP leaders, and two SNP leaders. Despite failing to become Prime Minister, his ability to hold the government to account has driven Johnson insane. If only the injustices in society made him go just as crazy.
Instead, Johnson – along with the rest of his party – attack Corbyn and Labour for rampant antisemitism. There have been cases where MP’s have been rightly deselected for their use of antisemitism within the party, and sadly some Jewish members have felt they can no longer align themselves with Labour at the current time. Prejudice is an outdated stain on society which we should all stand up against. Corbyn has long been an anti-racism campaigner, stating this year that there is a ‘real problem’ with antisemitism in the party whilst campaigning for the rights of his Jewish comrades, demonstrated with his 2002 clean up and vigil at Finsbury Park Synagogue which was maliciously targeted.
Alongside Corbyn’s anti-racism beliefs are his morals that are entrenched within the use of peaceful discussion to overcome tension. Despite being labelled pro-palestine Corbyn has praised the Israeli Prime Minister’s attempts at a two state solution before, as seen in 2010. He will not however, allow the corrupt workings of the government, whether it be in our own country, Europe or Israel.
Unfortunately for our new Prime Minister, actions speak louder than words and he fails to have many which demonstrate him in a pretty picture. Whilst Corbyn can remove the slander of the Conservative party, it is Johnson who will be reminded of the time he told women wearing burqa’s that they were ‘bank robbers’, or the time he referred to commonwealth citizens as having ‘watermelon smiles’. It is as though Johnson fails to grow up and plays it off as ‘banter’, but referring to Papua New Guinea as a country that takes part in ‘cannibalism’ is no joke – especially when he finds himself unable to state that America’s president is a racist. Why can he suddenly pick who it’s okay to offend and who not?
Playing the American card
If America is so important to Johnson, and historically the UK, it is interesting that no one is batting an eyelid at the recent resolution passed by the American House to boycott Israel. Is this antisemitic? Does our government think this is a racist attack on the Jewish community? If so, why is no one speaking up? Ohhhh… because Jeremy Corbyn is not involved. Gotcha. And the historically racist party that are, the Conservatives, do not actually care for the Jewish people but only when they can further their own political position? Naturally.
A shared problem for the UK and US is the lack of education of black history and the racist behaviour this feeds. White people become all too comfortable with using the ’n’ word, citing that it was used in a song, so what is the problem? But when faced with using the ‘r’ word, it becomes pressuring and difficult. Black individuals have endured a lack of representation their whole lives. In the class room, both through literature and teachers. In jobs, whereby opportunities are slashed in half. Prosecution is three times higher than it is for white people. Black women are seven times more likely to be detained than a white woman.
The stigma surrounding the community stinks and it is about time it changes. If you hear someone being racist, say something. If you read a racist comment online, reply. It is never too late to make tomorrow better for yourself and someone else (and whilst you are at it, register to vote).