X Close

Is it any wonder we’re so divided? The relentless message of disunity promoted by BLM erodes any solidarity we gained under lockdown

British BLM protesters Photo: Dan Kitwood/Getty Images


July 31, 2020   4 mins

On Thursday an organisation called “Together” (which is apparently made up of founders from the NHS, a number of charities, companies and media groups) warned that the “feelings of solidarity and togetherness” which typified the early stages of the nationwide lockdown “are already beginning to fragment and fray”.

Even without the polling that the group commissioned I suspect that most people would agree that this sounds about right. Perhaps inevitably the Together group highlighted activities like the weekly lockdown “clap-for-carers” as an example of a newly revived community spirit in the UK which is now disappearing.

Of course you have to get these things in proportion — the British public could not stand on their doorsteps applauding the NHS forever. But amid the lament for the disappearance of a unified spirit it seems that few people are willing to consider the range of things that might be causing a return of societal divisions, in particular an unwillingness to recognise that much division in our time is not natural, but pushed and encouraged from on high. Consider just one prominent — if so far unremarked upon — example.

During the height of lockdown I had to make a trip to the centre of London — urgent and essential, I promise that I am not giving any material for a Cummings-esque witch-hunt. I was walking through a completely deserted Piccadilly Circus in the middle of the day, where almost no cars or buses ran by, enjoying that unique luxury of being able to walk the streets, and down them, without being bothered by any other living being.

Many people have remarked on how apocalyptic central London looked at the time, and what made it even more like some end-times movie was the fact that the vast screens that dominate the north-east corner of this world-famous junction were beaming out to the deserted city an image of Her Majesty the Queen. This vision was accompanied by a phrase from her recent address to the nation: “We will meet again”. Despite the dystopian nature of the city there was something reassuring in this, something clearly intended to reassure the nation and to remind it that it still had some reserves to draw upon.

Last week I walked once more through this same piece of London. This time there were many more people milling about; not many people, and naturally no tourists. I would say the density at the height of the week was similar to what it would have been on a very early morning in pre-Covid times. But what struck me most was how the images being projected had changed; where there had been just The Queen, now front and centre was a very ominous sight indeed.

It consisted of a set of black-and-white images that were rotating slowly. The first to catch my eye was a close-up of some protestors with “Black Lives Matter” banners. All were masked, but at the front of the image was a masked man holding a child on his shoulders and the child holding a hand-painted sign which reads: ‘You F*cked with the last generation.’

It was a horrible sight, not just for the threatening iconography, but for the profanity — even with the asterisk — blazing out over Piccadilly circus. Other images slowly rotated on the main screen. Another close-up, this time of a solitary, masked, Black Lives Matter protestor. Then another of a white woman holding up another crudely hand-painted sign. “White people we’ve got work to do!” it read.

Next came a quote attributed to the civil rights activist John Lewis: “If not us, then who? If not now, then when?” I would be amazed if even one in a hundred British people had any idea who this John Lewis is. Say the name in the UK and most here will obviously guess you are talking about the department store. And if you asked about the phrase “If not now, then when”, then an equally small proportion might recognise it as a misquote of a title of a great book by Primo Levi.

In fact the quote is indeed from the recently-deceased US Congressman, who was widely respected for his work in the Civil Rights era, but wholly unknown in Britain. So what was this saying from a recently deceased American activist about life in America doing here in Britain? And what was it demanding that the citizens of London should do? What is this urgent demand to act?

Slowly the images rotated again: crowds of people doing the black power salute; a photograph of a black man wrapped in chains with a manacle around his neck and a gas mask covering most of his face; crowds of frightened people, shouting, screaming, yelling, crying; then a quote from Langston Hughes: “I swear to the Lord, I still can’t see, why democracy means, everybody but me.”

Again the question: who is doing this? And what is this claim — indeed insistence — that some people are completely cut off from democracy? The UK has had equal votes for everyone throughout all of our lifetimes. Parliament, the media and all other professions are filled with people of different racial backgrounds; many of the great offices of state in Britain are occupied by the children of immigrants to Britain. There is no opposition to this. So what is this demand for urgency? This radical insistence that we must pick ourselves up and fight?

The collage, apparently called “The Feelings of Injustice”, is a “photographic observation of diverse voices, faces and emotions united by pleas to end systemic racism”. Whether or not its ends “systemic” racism, an American idea recently imported wholesale, it certainly does not help strengthen the idea that there is a “we” the Queen talked of.

While groups like ‘Together” lament the evaporation of a community spirit in Britain, they fail to identify what’s causing this social evaporation. Perhaps it could be that the hugely divisive rhetoric of a movement that berates people for their skin colour, and is supported by everything from art galleries to the Premier League, does not cause people to feel hugely “Together”.

The division now returning to our society is almost entirely top-down; it is something we are being informed that we should feel and instructed to participate in, epitomised in that sinister rotation of images beaming out over London’s most famous junction. During lockdown we had an image of unity in the figure of The Queen; then a media company took over those same screens to start beaming out images which project not just an idea of disunity, but one that is wholly unsuited, indeed utterly alien, to the country they are being beamed into.

It is as though a television channel has been switched, the programme changed, not by some genuine, nascent, swell of change in attitude, but by often well-funded media organisations deciding to push a new narrative: a narrative of struggle against oppression, a narrative of violence and rage. But most of all a narrative of disunity and dissent.


Douglas Murray is an author and journalist.

DouglasKMurray

Join the discussion


Join like minded readers that support our journalism by becoming a paid subscriber


To join the discussion in the comments, become a paid subscriber.

Join like minded readers that support our journalism, read unlimited articles and enjoy other subscriber-only benefits.

Subscribe
Subscribe
Notify of
guest

161 Comments
Most Voted
Newest Oldest
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Paul Blakemore
Paul Blakemore
3 years ago

I refuse to be ‘white-shamed’ about historical events which took place centuries or decades before I was born. I have been reading history for decades, but am unsure what ‘confronting’ it involves exactly: it seems that I will not have done this correctly until I come to the conclusion that I have sinned in some way relating to the colour of my skin; feel guilt for the actions of others; demand an end to ‘structural racism’ that I do not think exists in this country. There is structural inequality in Britain, but the white working classes are among those worst affected.
Britain and the United States are very different.
Of course racism does exist: but it is far from being unique to ‘whites’: I have experienced and witnessed plenty of racism in my life, involving people of all backgrounds.

A couple of years ago I was on an early morning train out of London; sitting in the quiet coach at the front. Two young men came in after storing their bikes, and began chatting quite noisily. After a while the white middle-class chap began bemoaning racism in Britain. The young black guy, who had mentioned he was of Nigerian background and had travelled widely, said he thought Britain was the least racist country in Europe; possibly the world. That he never experienced the kind of racism in Britain that was commonplace travelling elsewhere in Europe; and that while other countries had legal protections in place, they did not really take them seriously in the way the authorities in Britain do.
He seemed to know what he was talking about; and the white guy seemed very uncomfortable with what he was being told.

Today’s politics of race are dangerous and divisive; and the culture of victimhood they encourage will make it harder for ‘black’ people to make a success of their lives.

Geoffrey Simon Hicking
Geoffrey Simon Hicking
3 years ago
Reply to  Paul Blakemore

For all its flaws, Britain is superior to Europe on racism. As far back as the 1880s, Lord Salsibury had to (successfully) defend himself against a racism charge. Treatment of different races mattered in Britain.

Meanwhile, the Belgians were on holiday in the Congo.

teecheesolutions
teecheesolutions
3 years ago

You obviously have no idea if Britain’s colonial history!

Dennis Lewis
Dennis Lewis
3 years ago

You obviously have no idea of either Britain’s colonial history or history in general! It’s very ironic that someone whose heritage is from one of the most racially bigoted, misogynistic, and tradition-bound parts of the world – South Asia – is on this forum lecturing British people about British history!

Joanna Caped
Joanna Caped
3 years ago
Reply to  Dennis Lewis

LOL that’s rich! Britain colonised parts of Southeast Asia and treated the inhabitants like lesser beings who existed to serve them. They also stripped the countries they occupied for parts. I have a feeling Rajiv Shah knows much more about this side of British history than you, Dennis. Your outraged umbrage than an upstart Asian would lecture You about British history is just perfect. Talking down to him as at best a second-class citizen. You are a caricature. Very amusing!

Claire D
Claire D
3 years ago
Reply to  Joanna Caped

I don’t think you know what you are talking about, it sounds as if you have read opinions about the history of colonialism rather than actual facts.
There was certainly a dark side to British colonialism as there is a dark side to life generally, but the benefits to the native countries usually far outweighed the negatives.

Ned Costello
Ned Costello
3 years ago
Reply to  Dennis Lewis

Excellent response, well said.

Naren Savani
Naren Savani
3 years ago

It is low information and high egocentric people like you who are going to be the end of the fantastic racial harmony we have in this country

Joanna Caped
Joanna Caped
3 years ago
Reply to  Naren Savani

Good heavens, you sure learned a lot about him from his one-line comment. Sounds a LOT like projection, Naren. I wonder how often you hear, “That’s not a British name, is it,” in that slightly disapproving tone.

David Burnfield
David Burnfield
3 years ago
Reply to  Joanna Caped

“Caped” That’s not a British name, is it?

Mark Corby
Mark Corby
3 years ago

Judging by her sentence construction, syntax and abbreviations, probably from the United States, would be my guess.

Any other offers?

aberfarm
aberfarm
3 years ago
Reply to  Joanna Caped

Welsh people get that all the time. But we recognise it for the infinitesimally trivial ‘slight’ that it is, take no offence and get on with our lives. Like grown-ups.

Drahcir Nevarc
Drahcir Nevarc
3 years ago
Reply to  Joanna Caped

He’s only hearing it from you. What are you going to call him next? ‘Coconut’?

Mark Corby
Mark Corby
3 years ago

You are not seriously implying any criticism of British India and its superlative ICS are you?

If you are, then sadly, you are seriously deluded. Try reading the Spanish philosopher Georges Santayana on the subject.Then you maybe able to speak with some authority on the matter, rather than parroting revisionist nonsense.

Joanna Caped
Joanna Caped
3 years ago
Reply to  Mark Corby

Are you seriously suggesting the British presence in India was benign? How myopic can one be. Maybe reading this book will catch you up with how things actually went down when the British colonized another people.
https://www.irishtimes.com/

David Burnfield
David Burnfield
3 years ago

People have been treating other people disgustingly over history and prehistory. It’s actually – completely – normal.

Of course it’s not normal today thanks to western civilisation, Christianity… Britain was the only empire to ever abolish slavery. We only know of the bad deeds of the west because western civilisation is very good at keeping records of good deeds and bad deeds. The same cannot be said for other civilisations in the past.

Learn about and love Western Civilisation!

Mark Corby
Mark Corby
3 years ago

As the late Mustafa Kemal put it, “there is only one civilisation, Western civilisation”.

Allie McBeth
Allie McBeth
3 years ago

Great comment!

Ned Costello
Ned Costello
3 years ago

No, we need axe-grinders like you to tell us all about it.

Drahcir Nevarc
Drahcir Nevarc
3 years ago

You’ve come to the wrong place sunshine. We don’t do white-shaming here.

Gill Marklew
Gill Marklew
3 years ago

Britain had a dreadful history in it’s involvement in the slave trade, and many more shameful global activities, including the appalling colonialisation of India and Pakistan, which is certainly to be decried, but can you understand the indignance of white people today being blamed for that? We need to acknowledge that shameful behaviour of some of the priviilged classes of a previous century, however, my own ancestors along with most Brits were exploited by those same people, worked in factories as child labour 7 days a week and living in dreadful conditions, and in the early part of the last century and before, most didn’t even make it into their teens, and so we sorely feel the injustice of being held to account for something we didn’t do, how much does the black community know about the historical suffering of working class whites? Or are we all seen as white privilaged and racist as the woke culture would divisively have you believe?

Mark Corby
Mark Corby
3 years ago

Don’t forget the beastly Germans in what is now Namibia, the wretched Italians in Abyssinia, the greedy Dutch in Indonesia, and finally the appalling French in Vietnam, Algeria, and Auckland Harbour.

Have I missed anyone?

David Burnfield
David Burnfield
3 years ago
Reply to  Mark Corby

The truly awful Japanese in China…

Mark Corby
Mark Corby
3 years ago

Yes, good point, I was being rather too Eurocentric.
Then off course there are the Chinese on the Chinese.

Fiona David
Fiona David
3 years ago
Reply to  Mark Corby

And the Chinese in Africa, rather more recently.

Dennis Boylon
Dennis Boylon
3 years ago

And Korea

teecheesolutions
teecheesolutions
3 years ago
Reply to  Paul Blakemore

But why is it anglo saxons have no problem shaming germans for what happened in the last century?

Joseph Berger
Joseph Berger
3 years ago

are you referring to 2 world wars? are you referring to the murder of 6 million Jews?? is stating those facts ‘shaming’ germans???

Paul Blakemore
Paul Blakemore
3 years ago

Couldn’t say; not something I do myself. Cant speak for what ‘Anglo-Saxons’ do; though that stuff from Sutton Hoo is jolly nice.

David J
David J
3 years ago

What have the Anglo-Saxons got to do with it?

Joanna Caped
Joanna Caped
3 years ago

I must admit, it’s shocking for an American to see the distorted sentimentality that seems to have stood in for modern British history. And here I thought Americans were prone to seeing our history through rose-colored glasses.

Eugene Norman
Eugene Norman
3 years ago
Reply to  Joanna Caped

It’s shocking to me that Americans, of any culture, class or colour, get to lecture anybody about anything. Britain may forget the past but the US forgets the present.

Ned Costello
Ned Costello
3 years ago
Reply to  Joanna Caped

Perhaps you’d be kind enough to give us some examples of this “distorted sentimentality” then? I think you’ve find, actually, that most British people are well aware that not everything about Empire and colonialism was good. Unlike you though I suspect, they know that it was not by any means all bad, and on balance that it was a force for good and went a very long way towards advancing human civilisation. I realise that the existence of an alternative viewpoint on all this probably comes as a terrific shock to you however.

Allie McBeth
Allie McBeth
3 years ago
Reply to  Joanna Caped

Do you not watch BBC television?

Andrew Butler
Andrew Butler
3 years ago
Reply to  Joanna Caped

I too am an American. There’s something to the rose-colored glasses you mention but they’ve long since been replaced by the proctoscope through which Howard Zinn viewed American history. (His has become the dominant perspective not only at universities and colleges but among K-12 government schools as well.) There is a middle way that avoids those two extremes but academe will not permit it. Despite the skewed parade of horribles Marxist professors promote (ignoring socialist atrocities altogether or breezily dismissing them by appealing to the “No true Scotsman” fallacy) it is instructive to consider which countries people are literally dying to get into and which they are willing to risk death to escape. Thousands of highly-motivated persons have drowned or been eaten by sharks attempting to swim from Cuba to Florida since Castro rose to power. The only person to have ever completed that treacherous 110-mile journey was long-distance swimmer Diana Nyad who swam it in the opposite direction not to reach freedom but simply to set a record. She receives no mention in Zinn’s noxious ” “A People’s History of the United States.” And there’s a reason for that.

Claire D
Claire D
3 years ago

The Anglo-Saxons, who were Germans as it happens, came to Britain in the early 5th century and then were defeated by the Normans, who were originally Vikings, in 1066.
What the heck are you talking about ?

Mark Corby
Mark Corby
3 years ago
Reply to  Claire D

The combination of races, Angles, Saxons, Jutes, Danes, Normans, Franks and French, produced a truly world beating cocktail, the English! Nothing like it had been seen since the days of Ancient Rome.

Finer than a G&T, or even a Whiskey & Soda.
Lucky for India that we found the place in those wonderful, buccaneering days of the early 17th century don’t you think?

Allie McBeth
Allie McBeth
3 years ago

This is within living memory! We do not however “shame Germans”. Indeed, we trade with them ‘and envy their resilience after losing two World wars.

Mark Corby
Mark Corby
3 years ago

Two World Wars and a World Cup, for starters!

Joanna Caped
Joanna Caped
3 years ago
Reply to  Paul Blakemore

No one wants this is to about shame or sin. Black people have been and continue to be systematically and continuously deprived of the benefits of liberty and equality in the US and elsewhere. This fact is something a great number of republicans (US) cannot countenance without getting defensive and fearing they’re supposed to “do something” to “make up for” their ancestors.

That’s not it, though. The call from #BLM is to acknowledge centuries of unfair treatment to Blacks, and to now change things to make them more fair. Not easier or cheaper or better-looking than what white men have. Equal. If your Black There are numerous examples of structural racism in the US that republicans, especially, have difficulty remembering. These are things like charging Black families a higher mortgage rate than their white counterparts with equal income and credit scores. Blacks are more likely than whites to have their belongings confiscated by police. When presented with resumes of two equally qualified job candidates, employers will throw away the one with the Black-sounding name.

The examples are virtually limitless. The ask is for people to individually stand up when racism is happening. Correct your friends or relatives who have bigoted beliefs. Speak up in the work meeting about how the Black job candidate, who may be named Shonquillette, actually has an interest that could really dovetail nicely with product positioning.

This movement has similarities to the feminist movement. Women were asking to be treated as equal adults, to have a vote, to obtain their own credit cards and not get fired for being pregnant, to not be subjected to legal assaults upon them by their husbands, among many other injustices. Men at the time, and to a lesser extent now, reacted by pretending feminists were asking for something they weren’t. They were afraid if they acknowledged that women had it bad, they’d have to give up some of their own perks.

They have a loathsome vocabulary to describe men and women who like cooperative, respectful relationships with equal individuals, not those running scripts for How To Be A Man / Woman. There was talk of women being “castrating” if they wanted to have jobs, or “unfeminine” if they wanted to continue their education. Similar bigotry is seen in the gay rights movement.

In fact, anyone other than straight white males has been at some disadvantage in this society. This isn’t to be confused with the bogus “equality of outcomes” nonsense that gets thrown around and has zero truth to it. People in favor of civil rights believe we should all start out on equal footing, that no group of people in our country deserves to be oppressed because of their identity.

There are lots of books out now about racism, anti-racism, how to be a white ally. To really understand how saying that Black lives matter is not dangerous or divisive, or part of a “culture of victimhood” I’d suggest you seek them out. It would educate you on the difference between a modern-day Nigerian in London and a Black American with African slave ancestors, among other things. You really do sound quite clueless.

Alison Houston
Alison Houston
3 years ago

The divisive narrative of black oppression in modern England is pushed by the middle classes
because in an equal society nobody can really get ahead.

Every middle class white person who has jumped on this band wagon has done so to secure themselves as part of the establishment, the ruling class. They know perfectly well their parents and grandparents and further back were not oppressors of the blacks, not slave owners, not keeping order with the whip hand in the colonies, not in a position to oppress anybody, in fact. They know they come from peasant stock and suburbia. But even in modern ‘equal’ Britain the Dursleys are still sneered at. John Major and the old Labour movement failed in their attempts to eliminate class barriers. Though equal opportunities have been ensured for people of different races, different sexes, different sexualities and different religions, yet the British class system still exists. Instinctively the middle classes feel that the class system will not allow them to rise to the heights to which they believe they should rise, if their real origins are known.

Thus, ironically, these people seem to feel a need to create a different kind of ‘level playing field’ to push for ‘equality’ using the means that were invented to try and create the ‘equal’ society’ which somehow still keeps the Dursleys firmly in their ordinary place. This is a movement not for equality for black people amongst whites, but between whites so that the merest rural labourer, still farming sheep on his patch of heather and bog in the north of England as a tenant farmer, who never sees a black person from one month to the next, or the poorest single mother on the council estate is as guilty of oppression and the worst sort of racist violence as actual slave owners and tyrannical rulers of the Colonies, by nature of their white skin. Because if you can claim to be part of the oppressor class while simultaneously demonstrating how you reject the racism of your long, biblical line of antecedents, you have killed two birds with one stone.

Basically it’s just Animal Farm all over again.

Of course it will fail because the white men who are actually in charge of running the BLM moment in Britain are still the old Etonians, Harrovians and Wykehamists, some of them probably the actual descendants of slave owners and rulers of the colonies and there still isn’t very much room at the top.

Benjamin Jones
Benjamin Jones
3 years ago
Reply to  Alison Houston

With reference to Animal farm, ‘Black Live matter’ = ‘Four Legs Good’. I’ll leave if up to the reader to decide what ‘two legs bad’ equals.

Geoff Cooper
Geoff Cooper
3 years ago
Reply to  Benjamin Jones

I think she may have been thinking of ‘all animals are equal but some..etc.’

Benjamin Jones
Benjamin Jones
3 years ago
Reply to  Geoff Cooper

I wasn’t second guessing what Alison was thinking, just that the chanting of BLACK LIVES MATTER reminds me of FOUR LEGS GOOD. The ‘All animals’ quote is just as applicable but not as snappy. 🙂

michaelgray77eve
michaelgray77eve
3 years ago
Reply to  Benjamin Jones

4+2=6, so you have a bit of a limp. Sorry – know trivialising it, but in my defence been a long week. One of those out there working.

Eugene Norman
Eugene Norman
3 years ago
Reply to  Alison Houston

Very good point. We know, by the way, who the slave owners were, at least in that snap shot in time when it was abolished. So lets pay an reparations from their wealth, not the average white person.

Mark Corby
Mark Corby
3 years ago
Reply to  Eugene Norman

What a ludicrous idea Eugene, you are just stirring it up!

True, we know who the ‘happy’ forty thousand or so were, who received due recompense under the 1837 Slave Compensation Act. As the law stood at the time they were correctly being compensated for the compulsory loss of private property.
Do you really dispute this?

You cannot seriously think it is equitable to penalise their descendants nearly two centuries later? If we were to follow that logic we would have to compensate the US for burning the White House in 1814, the Danes for doing the same to Copenhagen in 1807, and perhaps even the Chinese for torching some of Peking in 1860.

As a consequence of ‘our’ extraordinary triumphalist History, we would have to pay most of the known world.
Something which in fact we have already done, by the most munificence means possible.

Eugene Norman
Eugene Norman
3 years ago
Reply to  Mark Corby

Sure I do Mark. Or rather, if there is to be reparations ( which I don’t agree with in general for the very reasons you have annunciated) then the money should be taken from the descendants of the slave holders first. In this case we actually know who they are.

Otherwise the taxes will be on working class people who already paid up to compensate the slave holders ( over centuries as it happens as the debt lasted 150 years) . Even worse compensation to Jamaica from the UK, for instance, would come from the descendants of slaves themselves.

Comfort yourself with the fact that many of the most liberal of the great and good will have to pay up.

Mark Corby
Mark Corby
3 years ago
Reply to  Eugene Norman

Well it will be interesting to see the Gladstone family pay up for example.

I seem to recall they had a mere twenty thousand slaves, and they reinvested the compensation payment in the brand new London and Birmingham Railway. Perfect timing you might say.

It’s a great pity the US didn’t adopt our policy of compensation. If they had, they may have avoided their terrible Civil War.

Robin Lambert
Robin Lambert
3 years ago
Reply to  Mark Corby

Well Vikings (Norway) Danes (Denmark) Roman (Italy) Saxons (Germany) Normans (France) owe UK bigtime…Will Africa pay Uk reparations to make up for barbary slaves..

Mark Corby
Mark Corby
3 years ago
Reply to  Robin Lambert

Well yes, one could go on forever picking at the scab of archaic grievances, perhaps there should be a ‘stature of limitations’. I gather, for obvious reasons, the Germans are keen on the idea.

An excellent point about the Barbary Pirates. If Ireland wasn’t so unctuous, it should put in a claim for the raid that took most of the population of Baltimore, Co Cork, off to the Algiers slave market, one sunny afternoon in July, 1631. It must have been a most lucrative affair, very white bodies and red hair, fetched a very high price.

Joanna Caped
Joanna Caped
3 years ago
Reply to  Mark Corby

Are you saying Britain has given more to the known world than it has taken?

David Burnfield
David Burnfield
3 years ago
Reply to  Joanna Caped

Yes, Britain has arguably given more than any other country. Of course there are the Greeks and the Romans”Š The Germans”Š The French”Š The Jews”Š The Spanish”Š The Italians”Š All part of amazing western civilisation.

Britain has given us four high functioning countries, the US, Australia, Canada, New Zealand. It has given us the idea of freedom and made it work.

All in a couple of centuries, a blink in the historical eye.

Mark Corby
Mark Corby
3 years ago
Reply to  Joanna Caped

Yes, immeasurably !
Unrivalled since Ancient Rome, and in addition to the valid points made by David Burnfield below, we gave the world the Industrial Revolution.

Arguably the greatest event in human history, the triumph of Reason over Faith.

Perhaps astonishingly, it started in Devon and Cornwall, with self taught men, without a scintilla of input from those ‘priest factories’ of Oxbridge.

As it was, the rest of the world has been able to drag itself, kicking and squealing, from the proverbial, primeval slime, by piggybacking on ‘our’ genius and boundless generosity.

Ned Costello
Ned Costello
3 years ago
Reply to  Joanna Caped

Obviously.

Abril Chivato
Abril Chivato
3 years ago
Reply to  Alison Houston

When you said “the blacks” you exposed yourself.

michaelgray77eve
michaelgray77eve
3 years ago
Reply to  Abril Chivato

Coming from a very diverse family, colour does not compute. Feel totally disconnected from all of this. Your reply sort of empathised this. I have mixed race family members and never think of their colour. Just love them dearly as truly lovely people. Back to Alpha Steppa and Burning Spear.

Joanna Caped
Joanna Caped
3 years ago

There’s a difference between individual “diverse” people one knows and is related to, and groups of people from other cultures. The goal is to approach them as openly and trustingly as you would if the group was all white British people.

michaelgray77eve
michaelgray77eve
3 years ago
Reply to  Joanna Caped

Dear Joanna, you have made an assumption – my relations may well come from other cultures. Does not matter as agree with approaching people openly and trustingly, which was the whole point. Mind struggling how you arrived at my trusting white people specifically, especially given my actual colour, which I have mischievously kept to myself.

Cathy Carron
Cathy Carron
3 years ago
Reply to  Abril Chivato

Triggered?!

Joanna Caped
Joanna Caped
3 years ago
Reply to  Cathy Carron

LOL calling out racism is not “triggered,” it’s a responsibility discharged by decent people.

Neil John
Neil John
3 years ago
Reply to  Alison Houston

“Of course it will fail because the white men who are actually in charge of running the BLM moment in Britain are still the old Etonians, Harrovians and Wykehamists, some of them probably the actual descendants of slave owners and rulers of the colonies and there still isn’t very much room at the top.” As a regular visitor to the Old Wykehamists cricket matches in the 1990’s I’d say there’s quite a few high caste Indians and others from other former commonwealth countries who’ve attended ‘our’ public schools, so a lot of those ‘white men’ have actually grown up living in quite closed multi-racial communities. Our current Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak is a Wykehamist.

Joanna Caped
Joanna Caped
3 years ago
Reply to  Alison Houston

Good heavens! This movement is not about guilt, it’s about reducing the negative effects of systemic racism which continue to this day. “The poorest single mother on the council estate” might do disappointing racisms, like calling Black neighbors names, or more dangerous ones, like calling the cops on a Black person she wouldn’t call the cops for on a white person.

You can continue to deride and fear this movement, but wouldn’t it be ever so much nicer to learn what unfairness remains and join forces to make sure everyone has a fair shot?

Gill Marklew
Gill Marklew
3 years ago
Reply to  Joanna Caped

I expect your motives are well intended, but the consequences of your movement are extremely damaging and counter productive to race relations, telling blacks they are victims of white privilege racism, not only implicates all contemporary whites in the blame game, but infantalises and disempowers blacks, the message is that you can’t achieve because you’re being oppressed, in short, you are stigmatising the white community, and using blacks as a baton to bludgeon white people with, and who isn’t going to get angry about that? And who, do you think, can make the distinction between the baton and the hand that wields it? No one wants to see racial prejudice, but consider, isn’t this what you are perpetrating yourself to a white community as a whole? think about the messages you are putting out, and perhaps you might like to ask yourself why so many people loathe the woke movement.

Lydia R
Lydia R
3 years ago
Reply to  Alison Houston

You haven’t checked your “white privilege” I see.

Andrew Best
Andrew Best
3 years ago

It’s because they are racist, woke taliban, cultural Marxist with all the university education you can buy and that has taught them nothing of any value
Ignore and disregard as they are just racist or classist looking down their middle class noses at the working class

Vivek Rajkhowa
Vivek Rajkhowa
3 years ago
Reply to  Andrew Best

Except they’re in power, so we can’t ignore them. Remove them, and purge them from the ranks.

Mark Corby
Mark Corby
3 years ago
Reply to  Vivek Rajkhowa

Excellent idea, but how do we accomplish that?

Vivek Rajkhowa
Vivek Rajkhowa
3 years ago
Reply to  Mark Corby

Start with education, rhe seeds of all of this are being lain in schools and universities. Start there and work our way up.

David Gould
David Gould
3 years ago
Reply to  Vivek Rajkhowa

Have you seen the political manipulation being done in our educational establishments .. It’s scary stuff.
My 6 yr old daughter was highly distressed when a teacher of many years said if you aren’t christened you’re a bad person . Said daughter stood up and told the teacher , ” Miss that’s not fair Ethan is Muslim and he’s a nice boy ”
Eve her friend bust out crying , her parents don’t believe in such religious mumbo jumbo .
Take the EU referendum . Teachers at her senior school were openly saying to the students ou need to get your parents to vote to stay in the EU . They even had lessons pushing it , but no discussions that gave the opposite view that leaving is the best thing since sliced bread . They took an imaginary vote on the subject and the kids voted unanimously to stay … Yet the adults in Wales voted over whelming to leave .

At another government sponsored event the kids were told if you don’t speak Welsh you’ll never get a job . My daughter is now 18 yrs old fluent in Welsh ( better than most of her mates ) & rightfully condemns such silly attitudes as well as the virtue signalling & yorping of the British BLM mob … surely All Lives Matter ? Isn’t it time we stopped the political manipulation being done by teachers in schools on fertile minds & promote” Get a Life Movment ” .

Before anyone starts the racist crap My niece is from central India , my nephews are Chinese & German , my sis in law is Polish . My wife is a mix of Greek , Irish , Scottish & Yorkshire . I’m of Jewish descent with a light brown skin colour if the sun gets to me .

Mark Corby
Mark Corby
3 years ago
Reply to  Vivek Rajkhowa

Agreed, but that is a monumental task.

‘The’ Frankfurt inspired woke/shriekers-teachers have been infiltrating the education system since at least 1945. They have spread like cancer, and now infect every part of the body.

A cardinal event, as you may recall, was the destruction of the Grammar Schools, in the late 60’s and early 70’s by the odious Anthony Crossland and others.

93% of our children are educated by the state, but even the fortunate 7% are not to be spared, as shown by the current Headmaster of Eton, bowing to BLM pressure the other day.

Even Mrs T was unable to reverse the damage caused by Crossland so realistically, what chance have we?

tmglobalrecruitment
tmglobalrecruitment
3 years ago
Reply to  Andrew Best

they are children of parents who never said no, as a consequence they are infantalised idiots, who “benefitted” from a dumbed down education that never highlighted their weaknesses.

They are in every way irrelevant.

Joanna Caped
Joanna Caped
3 years ago
Reply to  Andrew Best

Do you think when you list out all these words you want to sound very scary, because you haven’t got a good education yourself, it makes you look clever? I know what they mean and you are not making anything close to a persuasive argument. I suggest you look them up. In what way are people who believe Black lives matter as much as white lives “the taliban” or “racist”? I really think it would do you good to get down to brass tacks and reason your way through this.

trentvalley57uk
trentvalley57uk
3 years ago
Reply to  Joanna Caped

I think you should look at their website. Over £1 million in donations. Where does that go I wonder. A fair slice to Democrats and excellent payments to BlM leaders. Fact They have to constantly stir up hatred and racism because with that there would be no need for BLM

Fraser Bailey
Fraser Bailey
3 years ago

Another excellent and perceptive piece by Douglas. Following the death of Mark E Smith, Douglas has stepped into his shoes as ‘Our nation’s saving grace’.

Dennis Lewis
Dennis Lewis
3 years ago
Reply to  Fraser Bailey

I was with you until you made your gratuitous non sequitur about Mark E Smith. Wtf?

Matthew Powell
Matthew Powell
3 years ago

The middle classes hold on power has been slipping in recent years. In desperation they’ve made an alliance with radical racial political movements, in order to try cobble together some sort of coalition to regain political power. This dangerous game, playing divide and rule based on skin colour, could end very badly for all of us.

Joanna Caped
Joanna Caped
3 years ago
Reply to  Matthew Powell

Oh my, if the poor and the colored were to make common cause against us white and comfortable, that “could end very badly for all of us.” I’m afraid you’ve said the quiet part out loud, Matthew. You believe it’s “dangerous” for oppressed people to have their consciousness raised, because they’ll notice the trickery that’s been used to prevent their own social mobility. You’ve been bad and you deserve to feel afraid, because a new alliance forces you to face all the many the ways you don’t want to be treated in exactly the ways you’ve treated them!

Pete Kreff
Pete Kreff
3 years ago
Reply to  Joanna Caped

the colored

Isn’t that appellation viewed as racist these days?

M Blanc
M Blanc
3 years ago
Reply to  Joanna Caped

“Oppressed people”. “Consciousness raised”. Hackneyed Leftist claptrap. Leave it at the meetings of your cell, comrade.

Matthew Powell
Matthew Powell
3 years ago
Reply to  Joanna Caped

I considered writing a full response but since your comment bares no relation to what I’ve written, it seems that it would be wasted on you anyway.

trentvalley57uk
trentvalley57uk
3 years ago
Reply to  Joanna Caped

You are totally deluded. By 2021 racism in the UK apart from the usual thugs had become colour blind. Why not. Black people had been part of our communities for 60 years. It would take people much harder than the passive brits to sustain a profound hatred.
Blm have taken race relations back 50 years and in the process destroyed young black lives. You should be ashamed.

Colin Sandford
Colin Sandford
3 years ago

Racial equality was progressing steadily it may have had a way to go but it was making progress.
The BLM movement bursting onto the scene promoting anarchy and Marxism has set the equality back decades. And all for what?

Abril Chivato
Abril Chivato
3 years ago
Reply to  Colin Sandford

Don’t you think Black people are the judge of that? The barometer of progress doesn’t rest with those in power but those who are impacted from disempowerment. And BLM might in fact be in response to a reality you are overlooking?

Pete Kreff
Pete Kreff
3 years ago
Reply to  Abril Chivato

Don’t you think Black people are the judge of that?

It rather sounds like you’re implying that all black people think the same way.

There are many black people who disagree with the movement and its tenets, assumptions, conclusions and goals.

trentvalley57uk
trentvalley57uk
3 years ago
Reply to  Abril Chivato

Wrong. It has initiated hate as its tool. Guilt as its hammer and stripped young black people of self esteem, confidence and personal responsibility. It has insisted they see themselves as oppressed victims and therefore can never achieve. Nowhere do you ever mention hard work, self sacrifice and dedication required to have a good life. They are encouraged to think that people have good lives because they are white and thats the only reason

Claire D
Claire D
3 years ago

I think the media and big business ride on the back of whatever the current mood is.

In the initial stages of the COVID 19 crisis when thousands of people were dying each week, the feeling was very much like a war time spirit. Two months further on as the death rate declined, some of the people least able to cope with the lockdown restrictions, youngsters mostly, got the chance to break the law and congregate in large numbers, have a day out, chant, stamp their feet and let their frustrations rip. A brutal killing on the other side of the world in a different country was the excuse. The trouble is such happenings can cause something that takes on a life of it’s own, like the assassination in Sarajevo just over a hundred years ago.

Media and big business should indeed be careful and not be overconfident that they can capitalise on a mood without risking catastrophe.

Claire D
Claire D
3 years ago

I agree with your second paragraph but not your first.
I think it would be more true to say that young British radicals, of whatever skin colour, are taking advantage of a shocking incident to undermine the establishment and flex their political muscles. The black people in that crowd who have bought into the victimhood ethos of identity politics, may be attempting what you say; the white people involved have a different more diffuse hard left-wing agenda, which can be usefully coupled with BLM and make use of the powerful influence it has gained.

Benjamin Jones
Benjamin Jones
3 years ago
Reply to  Claire D

My observation from Facebook was that ‘Black Lives Matter’ seemed to strike a cord with young women in particular and not necessarily middle class/university schooled either. In a flash they were transformed from pouting selfie taking supermodel wannabee’s into civil rights experts exhorting anyone who disagreed with them to ‘go educate yourself’. Whilst I think it’s a good thing that the young become more politically aware, the cynic in me says that deprived of likes from they would normally gain from posting a 100 selfies from a drunken night out by lockdown, appearing virtuous to all and sundry was a guaranteed and worthy ‘like’ winner.

Claire D
Claire D
3 years ago
Reply to  Benjamin Jones

Yes, the strong female presence on the BLM protests is interesting, a heady mix of sexual frustration + self-righteousness perhaps.

Juilan Bonmottier
Juilan Bonmottier
3 years ago
Reply to  Benjamin Jones

I’m just struck by the sheer nastiness of the messages on those
placards. Everything the world should not be about from a
movement that purports to represent a greater humanity.

BLM is a thoroughly conceited form of violent hate.

Abril Chivato
Abril Chivato
3 years ago
Reply to  Claire D

Not sure what you mean about underachievement and self-sabotage. My job is organizational change. I’ve done this at companies you have heard of. These companies are in crisis because the vast majority of leaders, who are white men, are grossly incompetent and have anti-collaborative value systems. They’re incompetent because they’re held to lower standards/racism assumes they are more capable than they are. Also because people tiptoe around them and they never get the feedback they need to grow. Why? Because they have power and power is not necessarily strength. They are often fragile. It’s dangerous to speak truth to them. Less powerful people, esp Italy marginalized, do lose their jobs over this.

It’s not about white men innageley being terrible. It’s that White men are socialized with powerhoarding values. These values create anti-collaborative work environments in covert but often subtle ways. They are often confused as to why people quit threat companies. Another socialized powerhoarding tool is to lack reflexivity.

That alone proved systemic racism that puts up barriers to opportunities.

Abril Chivato
Abril Chivato
3 years ago
Reply to  Abril Chivato

To understand systems, you have to understand how power works and it’s tools to sustain it. Power protects power. Power justifies itself.

The biggest power tool is abstraction. What cannot be explicitly named cannot be held under scrutiny and therefore evades accountability. Abstraction is hidden in systems.

Education is incredibly important in Black American communities. Power puts up systemic barriers.

Example: Black women are the most educated group in America yet struggle to find workplaces that value them and their talents. Struggle to get into leadership positions. That’s systemic barriers.

A better a book would be about flagrant unequality of the American school system. It funds schools from local property taxes. Money matters because it attracts better teachers and affords less crowded classrooms and technologies etc. for better learning and opportunities.

Segregation and racism means Black people live separate from white people. Black neighborhoods have lower property values (because blackness is devalued) and therefore less money for schools.

Eugene Norman
Eugene Norman
3 years ago
Reply to  Abril Chivato

Thats all a bit American for me. Do you have a statistic on black American women being the most educated in the US?

In any case the CEO class, there and here, isn’t ( or isn’t just) predominantly white but predominantly from the 1%.

Cathy Carron
Cathy Carron
3 years ago
Reply to  Eugene Norman

Re: black American women – greater percentage of them are college educated than black men, but they are by no means ‘the most educated’. The highest achieving groups in higher education in the USA tend to be Jews & Asians if one is delineating ‘groups’. Their high academic achievement is reflected in their subsequent higher salaries.

Cathy Carron
Cathy Carron
3 years ago
Reply to  Abril Chivato

NYC spends $25K a year to educate each student, the highest just about anywhere on earth for public education. And the outcomes are abysmal, as roughly only 25% could pass state exams in recent years. NewYork City is 40% white / 60% all other, minorities, black, Asian, Latino. There are even fewer white students (10%). New York taxpayers deserve better outcomes for paying the second highest taxes in the nation.

David Gould
David Gould
3 years ago
Reply to  Claire D

Ha Ha . Moral authority the path every fool takes when they cannot think things through for themselves.

Joseph Berger
Joseph Berger
3 years ago

As always, a very good analysis by Douglas Murray.
When I was younger, Britain was almost taken over by the trade union movement led by a man called Scargill, and was only stopped at almost the last moment, by Margaret Thatcher,
what was insidiously destroyng Britain was the crazy notion of sympathy strikes, that your industry could stop working and cripple the country because another union working in a totally unrelated industry were going on strike – and you were “in sympathy” with them.
Intellectually, it was utter drivel, economically, it almost paralyzed the country.

The demonstrations in the UK and some other countries – totally unconnected to the divisions in the US, are remarkably similar, and in both cases the manipulators have similarly destructive goals.
Unfortunately, the foolish idiocy of many enablers – I particularly single out the ridicuous Football Association with the disgusting kneeling – plays into the hands of those who wish no good – only harm and destruction – on the good nature of the majority of decent people.

There is nothing good about blm, it is a goup of thugs, thieves, virulently anti-American, anti-Jewish, anti-semitic, destroyers of police cars and assaulting police themselves.
Those Brits who wanted to destroy statues of some of the greatest contributors to the free and mostly civilized country Britain has been for centuries, demonstrated a level of such profound ignorance of history that the shaming should have been of the universities that so sadly deceived them.

Graeme Laws
Graeme Laws
3 years ago
Reply to  Joseph Berger

I have a problem. I’m not black so I can’t know how it feels to be black. I think we have made real progress on race equality over the last 50 years, but I am inclined to believe those who say that more needs to be done. But BLM seems to me – correct me if I’m wrong – to assume that progress in society can only be achieved by destroying the very institutions that have got us this far.

chrisjwmartin
chrisjwmartin
3 years ago

Nearly all of the BLM-Antifa terrorist movement is white. They are radical whites using blacks as a smokescreen for imposing their agenda.

chrisjwmartin
chrisjwmartin
3 years ago
Reply to  chrisjwmartin

Here are the mugshots of those arrested in Portland: https://thefederalist.com/w…. Black power, brother!

Brian Dorsley
Brian Dorsley
3 years ago
Reply to  chrisjwmartin

It’s already happening with #WOM (#wallofmoms) in Portland. They set themselves up to be a physical wall around black protestors. Now BLM are accusing WOM of making the protests about themselves.

https://www.oregonlive.com/

Cho Jinn
Cho Jinn
3 years ago
Reply to  chrisjwmartin

“If the main driving force behind the protests is White then a lot of Black people are going to find they have been duped and used.”

That population, unfortunately, has been duped as used for the better part of the last 50 years here in the U.S., and a certain political party is dedicated to ensuring that remains the status quo.

Miriam UĂ­
Miriam UĂ­
3 years ago
Reply to  chrisjwmartin

According to Pew Research,
17% of BLM protesters are black in the US, while blacks make up 13% of the population. http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-ta...

David Bottomley
David Bottomley
3 years ago

For every UK slave trader, their were many African slave sellers, each of whom though nothing of using violence to hunt down capture, imprison, chain and sell on their human captives to the highest European bidder. Just the like rounding up animals for profit. It’s time the issue looked at this side of the horrors of slavery.

There was an interesting article on the BBC website reporting on one young women’s recognition that her (African) ancestors were hunters, capturers and sellers of slaves for profit. Interestingly, she was quite happy to adopt the view that what her ancestors did was just part of the general culture and practice amongst Africans at the time- practices that continued after the Europeans had outlawed slavery.

Dennis Lewis
Dennis Lewis
3 years ago

Yes, this reminds me of my research during my university days into the Benin-Brazil slave trade in the 17th-19th centuries. You’re right, there is a real double-standard when discussing the evils of slavery and the people who profited from it. In the ‘woke’ narrative, it’s presented as a peculiarly European pathology. Yet it’s interesting that few point out, for example, the very brutal slave regimes in the Ottoman Empire or in the Arab world.

David Bottomley
David Bottomley
3 years ago

Yep – we haven’t got rid of the old religious habits and thinking that we are sinners and sins require self flagellation and atonement.

The totally weird thing to me is that European slave trade died out a long time ago and was carried out by a tiny, tiny number of the population yet, generations on, all of us are supposed to atone for the perceived sins of a small elite, the same elite that subjected most of the UK population to pretty hard and unjust lives and from whose labours they profited.

Andrew Russell
Andrew Russell
3 years ago

It might be a good idea to make showboating displays of sanctimonious hypocrisy a criminal offence.

Cho Jinn
Cho Jinn
3 years ago
Reply to  Andrew Russell

I don’t think there are enough electric chairs in the world to execute them all, frankly.

David Bell
David Bell
3 years ago

Whatever way you look at it, BLM operate in a way that is racist. The hole concept of “White Privilege” speaks to a racist attitude equivalent to “no blacks, no Irish and no dogs”.

There will be a terrible back lash against this movement probably as they subdivide blackness into smaller segments. That will result in some groups have less “grievance” power than others which will lead to discontent within the ranks. We can see exactly the same process happening over the attacks in Reading where the victims, as homosexuals, where lower down the grievance ladder than the perpetrator who was an immigrant (racism) and Islamic (Islamaphobia). Consequently the attacker was hardly discussed, his motivates where ignored and it disappeared from the headlines as fast as possible.

The question is how much damage will be done before it falls appart.

Dennis Lewis
Dennis Lewis
3 years ago
Reply to  David Bell

Ironically enough, the main proponent of this “white privilege” scam is a ‘woke’ white woman – Robin D’Angelo.

Greg C.
Greg C.
3 years ago

Nobody that matters is paying attention ti these imbeciles. That’s to say the silent majority ignores them. As for the indoctrination, it only works on simple minds. In those with at least one neuron, it is counter productive.

Fraser Bailey
Fraser Bailey
3 years ago
Reply to  Greg C.

But the silent majority are NOT the people that matter. They are irrelevant to those who seek power and wish to change society or the course of history.

Joseph Berger
Joseph Berger
3 years ago
Reply to  Greg C.

but but but
those whom you call “the simple minds” are the university students and graduates in universities in the UK and the USA and Canada today.
they are probaly the most miserably ignorant and uneducated “students” in history and they lap up this nonsense,
and many of them will vote for the demented biden in November.

Mike Young
Mike Young
3 years ago

There are so many channels of choice these days when it comes to what you want to believe in. Its not just twitter, facebook and every other social media outlet, but every website can in theory peddle its wares on what to believe. There are also no end of people willing to purchase these wares without an ounce of critical thinking having taken place. Add to this mix, as Douglas points out, well organised and funded groups, it is no wonder the country is so divided. I see no end to this state of affairs, just a continuing acceleration. And sadly, no immediate solution. But I for one, am fed up of being told what to think, say and do by the unthinking.

Cathy Carron
Cathy Carron
3 years ago

Is it okay to say, “I really don’t care – leave me alone”? I think if polled the majority of people would say, “Aye”.

That said, folks are probably not as much ‘racist’ as protective and defensive and therefore stereotype racial behavior to ward off or avoid danger. It’s very instinctual.

In college I learned that ‘blacks’ are just as racist as any others. Decades ago as a transfer student at Wellesley College in Massachusetts (USA), I was housed it what was unofficially considered ‘the black dorm’, Bates; most notably, Obama’s eventual-but-quickly-disposed-of-social secretary Desiree Rogers was there at the time. Admittedly, I had never been around so many blacks before having grown up in a suburb south of Boston, inhabited by many Americans of Irish & Italian ancestry who had left postwar Boston in search of housing to start families. I learned a few things about blacks at tony Wellesley, 20 miles north of my hometown. Blacks were tight knit and were not especially interested in getting to know whites in the dorm. Amusingly, they started partying at midnight (at which time I would be ready to hit the sack) and finished up at dawn with breakfast. But perhaps most interesting to me was that they were judgmental and ‘racist’ towards each other via skin color, ie ‘lighter seemed better’ from what they said. Sitting in a common area one afternoon, I observed them passing around an Essence magazine, a publication for black women. I was fascinated to hear them discuss, tease and be down right mean about ‘racial tone’. Quite honestly, something that never crossed my mind at all regarding anyone regardless of race. As they say, in college, you learn just as much outside the classroom as you do in.

iamthebigaliam
iamthebigaliam
3 years ago

Division speak on either side of the argument is harmful, racism is a very broad brush and the paint is in all colours, the more polarised society becomes on issues of the past what hope is there for the future. I would suggest that a majority of the vocal opinionated division mongers can’t imagine the deeply twisted threads of humanitys history that have gone into weaving the tapestry of the race issue. One true constant is the human disposition for exploitation of each other, any human difference has been opportunity to capitalise for personal, commercial, political, societal gains. I don’t know who is gaining capital from the present wave of indignation and disgust at a past world we wouldn’t recognise or understand without a true understanding of its context, i don’t understand America and it’s racial equation likewise i don’t understand how quasi liberal white people removed from that context by 2000 miles and an entire culture can protest on a subject when their very actions become paradoxical to liberal humanitarian values that should be the platform of a belief system for equality.
It is my belief that we need to move on, forget a past we can’t hope to understand and stop looking for divisions to define us.
I can’t help but feel cynical and suspicious towards the voices driving this movement.

Andrew D
Andrew D
3 years ago

Good article by Douglas as always, but somebody should have proofread it. I doubt very much that asterix appeared in a BLM poster, though I wish he had. And the plural of art gallery is art galleries

Geoff Cooper
Geoff Cooper
3 years ago

Or take a long, hard, honest look at some aspects of their own lives and culture that are often just as much to blame for that under-achievement as any real or imagined ‘racism’.

Diana Durham
Diana Durham
3 years ago

Is there a way to find out who funded those images in Piccadilly? Does anyone know?

Dorothy Slater
Dorothy Slater
3 years ago

Portland has been – and still is – a predominately white city. In fact, at one point it was the headquarters of the KKK and even now, the black population is barely 3 percent overall. Indeed, one wag had it that there are more BLM signs on lawns in front of the many million dollar mansions lining our streets than there are blacks.

I live on a very gentrified street in Portland that was once a thriving Black community of jazz clubs.. small businesses, restaurants and middle class homes. Indeed, the street was the only place in town where a black jazz musician such as Louis Armstrong could sleep. All hotels downtown were closed to them. The Blacks are all gone replaced by a number of apartment buildings designed by computers and housing young white bike riding residents who know nothing of its history. Hence, the amusement I felt as I watched a parade of them coming up the street on a number of nights yelling and screaming about justice – never mind the justice that drove all of the Blacks out of town.

One does not need to be a Trump supporter nor support the arrival of the troops,to be of the opinion that what may have started as a peaceful protest turned into a near riot – a term the press was reluctant to use. This is what Woke looks like these days in Portland.

And then of course we had the young white woman called Athena who strolled naked onto the street and sat with her legs spread apart . My aging friends missed her point but we are jealous that none of us has her body – or else we would have joined her.

Lydia R
Lydia R
3 years ago

The fact BLM calls themselves Marxist means they are fellow travellers of regimes which murdered 100 million people but we aren’t hearing about that from the BBC and Channel 4.

aelf
aelf
3 years ago

‘Systemic racism’ is a term of art meaning ‘racism we can’t find but really, really want to exist.’

Jonathan Weil
Jonathan Weil
3 years ago

Which “Blacks”, precisely, are engaged in this power grab? Could there be any exceptions, or are they all as cynical and evil as you suggest? Oh, wait: the question turns out to be moot! They all can be lumped together in the form of “Black” who, at once amorphous and monolithic, can and should be generalised about by the informationally challenged. So “Black” is ventriloquising BLM to further his dastardly agenda is he? As a bit of a BLM sceptic myself, I’d have thought it was the other way round – a small number of politically extremist activists channelling legitimate popular anger at police violence for their own purposes (and I’d assume most of them are sincere, albeit wrong, in thinking that e.g. defunding the police will actually help black lives). As for “Black’s long history of underachievement” being the prime cause of black complaints… I’m not a fan of holding any people responsible for their ancestors’ shortcomings, but if you’re going to do it then at least get your facts somewhat straight.

Hywel Morgan
Hywel Morgan
3 years ago

Mr Murray might well “be amazed if even one in a hundred British people had any idea who this John Lewis is.” But when I wor a lad, we all knew John Lewis. We used his full name, of course – John L Lewis – and did so reverently. He was the great leader of the US mineworkers. We were biased, as his family was Welsh, but I suspect he was equally famous around places like Durham.

Jeff Krinock
Jeff Krinock
3 years ago

If *we* don’t expose social engineering, then who? If not now, then when?

“Again the question: who is doing this?” and “So what is this demand for urgency?” These are, IMO, the right questions at the right time. The internet has *not* given us some sort of magic transparency. Time to use every research tool we have at our disposal (or have ever had in the past) to unmask social engineering. Yes, the kind Popper described. It is real, it is funded heavily, and backed by the politically powerful.

Steve Gwynne
Steve Gwynne
3 years ago

Cultural relativists are increasingly sociopathic in their intent. They will deploy any manner of sophistry to defend cultural relativism because it is only through cultural relativism that the liberal establishment can enjoy cultural power. Through cultural relativism, the liberal establishment can appoint themselves as arbitrators between different cultural groups and more importantly, make arbitrary decisions that privilages themselves and their political and cultural allies.

BLM is an orchestrated aggrandisement of cultural relativism which seeks to consolidate support for cultural relativism as the basis of liberal establishment cultural power.

When we destroy cultural relativism, the liberal establishment will no longer have any cultural power.

Alan McMahon
Alan McMahon
3 years ago

I see you fall into the “angry reactionary” camp of your mission statement.

David Bottomley
David Bottomley
3 years ago

I find myself wondering if, for the young whites who seem to make a large percentage of the protestors, the BLM movement is a vehicle for something else: a need to feel important, a need to feel that what they feel is of significance, a need to rebel or, to be unkind, a need to feel self righteous. Maybe it’s just that in this increasingly complex, unpredictable uncertain world, BLM provides something nice and clear cut on which to latch their identity and meaning. Or to be more positive, is it a sign of a growing recognition of the emptiness of consumerism as a way of life and the need to identify with something more fundamental and meaning full. LGBT etc provided something but Perhaps got a bit lost in its own rhetoric. BLM provides something more universal, with which anyone can relate?

Fraser Bailey
Fraser Bailey
3 years ago

Alternaitvely, perhaps they are just thick.

Joseph Berger
Joseph Berger
3 years ago
Reply to  Fraser Bailey

a good response to Mr Bottomley’s perhaps wellintentioned igorance.
blm is a nasty virulently anti-american anti-Jewish anti-semitic group of thugs, thieves, destroyers of police property and physically assaulting police,
there is abolutely nothing – zero – to be said in their favour.

Dave Smith
Dave Smith
3 years ago

That description of London is another good reason for forgetting the place exists. Why go there unless you have to?

mrgrahammarklee
mrgrahammarklee
3 years ago

The BBC

Martin Bourne
Martin Bourne
3 years ago

i recommend that Douglas reads https://www.newstatesman.co… by Mark Damazer. Protests of the sort he describes don’t create disunity they reflect a sincere departure from the his view, which i dare say is shared by the Queen, that there is nothing fundamentally wrong with British society.

Alec Ross
Alec Ross
3 years ago

Just curious … how many of the commenters on this story are Black? Anyone?

Mike Young
Mike Young
3 years ago
Reply to  Alec Ross

Probably as many percentage wise as on that demonstration picture in the article!!

Fraser Bailey
Fraser Bailey
3 years ago
Reply to  Mike Young

I feel a quote from Jon Snow coming on…

David Bell
David Bell
3 years ago
Reply to  Alec Ross

Is that important, is being white a bar to being heard on a issue?

Jeff Krinock
Jeff Krinock
3 years ago
Reply to  David Bell

Sadly, it is now…
Social geniuses figured out they can fix racism via racism.
Brilliant.

Dennis Lewis
Dennis Lewis
3 years ago
Reply to  Alec Ross

Hmmm! You might surprised, old chap.

Juilan Bonmottier
Juilan Bonmottier
3 years ago
Reply to  Alec Ross

Does it matter?

Andrew D
Andrew D
3 years ago
Reply to  Alec Ross

I’m Spartacus!

Laura NJ
Laura NJ
3 years ago

I’m sure someone must have pointed this out already, but the original quote was from Pirkei Avot, said by Hillel the Elder – not Primo Levi. The full quotation is usually rendered something like: “If I am not for myself, who will be for me? But if I am only for myself, what am I? And if not now, when?”

Joanna Caped
Joanna Caped
3 years ago

You seem out of touch with how racism continues to affect people, both in the UK and the US. Perhaps this helps? I’m sure you could find a second-hand copy closer to home. https://ebooks4deal.com/boo

johnjweyland
johnjweyland
3 years ago

representative democracy still allows the majority of parliamentarians to routinely vote against the wishes of the clear majority of voters. is this not cut off from democracy?
there are pockets of community spirit in the mid north but inequality erased it elsewhere centuries ago.

Laine Andrews
Laine Andrews
3 years ago

Slavery and racism have been universal sins throughout history with every race experiencing both slaving and being enslaved. Of all races, whites were the first to evolve on this issue, declare the slave trade inhumane and end it using British and US navies. How bizarre then that whites are scapegoated by those with far worse records on slavery and nothing in the plus column e.g. CENTURIES of black Africans selling their excess slaves from defeated tribes to Muslim/Arab slave ships waiting on the coast of the Dark Continent. Indeed, both Arabs and African blacks continue pockets of slavery where they rule.

Tragically, whites are also the sole race to have developed a poison pill calling themselves “liberals” or “progressives” but really leftist/socialist/communist who accept eternal generational blame on behalf of whites for every ill on this earth. There are no blacks, Arabs, hispanics, Chinese, East Indians decrying their ancestors and fellows as scum of the earth nor requiring everyone of their race or ethnicity pay reparations for ancient sins not of their making.

sbisrael
sbisrael
3 years ago

It wasn’t John Lewis, it wasn’t Primo Levi.
It was the rabbinic sage Hillel the Elder who famously said more than 2,000 years ago, “If I am not for myself, who will be for me? If I am only for myself, what am I? If not now, when?”

Mark Corby
Mark Corby
3 years ago

Actually this is all rather deja vu.
Back it the late sixties there were real race riots with large body counts, Martin Luther King, killed by a sniper as were others, “Black Power” was the name of the game, with raised black fists prominent on the Olympic Podium.

As today, there were a plethora of white ‘shriekers’ crying for the end of civilisation.
This was the era of sex, drugs and rock and roll, the pill, and all manner of other amusements. Things had never been better in the West, at least not since the days of the Pax Romana.

Yet, still a small, vociferous, white, self hating minority were determined to overthrow the system.

Naturally they failed. Where are they now? The brightest soon headed for the Counting Houses of London and New York, for very lucrative careers in money lending, stock broking, and wealth management.

Today they scorch their obese carcasses besides azure pools, deep in the Chianti Hills, whilst their over entitled offspring behave in the same cretinous ways they did. History will repeat itself.

trentvalley57uk
trentvalley57uk
3 years ago

I understand what you are saying but please count me out. My mixed race grandchild will hopefully aquire more balance

perrywidhalm
perrywidhalm
3 years ago

In order to usher in the great Marxist utopia, Leftists must try to divide us against one another and ourselves. Leftists alone have the perfect vision of the perfect society and our job is to conform, submit and obey.

john.ilijevic84
john.ilijevic84
3 years ago

I don’t see the support for BLM from the art galleries, sporting clubs and celebrities as genuine; I see it mostly as an act of fear, a weird kind of preemptive surrender to avoid finding themselves on the end of boycott hashtag.

Abril Chivato
Abril Chivato
3 years ago

What solidarity? Considering systemic racial disparity impacted Black communities much more heavily than white people. What solidarity when it took Black people to protest unjust killing and white people would have done nothing – as always – unless Black people kicked the tires in. You don’t seem to understand that solidarity only comes after justice. Pandemic didn’t erase knowledge that nearly half of the vote went to Trump who made Covid an embarrassingly sloppy disaster that disproportionately hurt Black people both in Covid-related deaths and subsequent job loss.

Can’t be in unity with people who show violence and harm without first repairing damaged trust. Unity demands trust.

Imagine punching your wife in the face for years and giving out non-apologies each time then pandemic comes and then insisting solidarity because “we are all in this together.”

Solidarity is fantasy from someone who clearly doesn’t have Black Americans in their inner circle or you would have know better than to make your assertion.

michaelgray77eve
michaelgray77eve
3 years ago
Reply to  Abril Chivato

Dear Abril, solidarity does exist, I know not enough. Quick story – football match and one of our players was sent off near the end. One black face amongst 22 people and it was him. Put me arm round him as he was walking off. Why did you lump the guy? He told me why and no desire to repeat, but you can guess. Told the referee and he said he would not send the report in. Told my lot and they were in the faces of the opposition; the opposition disgusted apologised when they heard what our team mate suffered. We played them some weeks later, the racist guy no longer played for them. Our team mate? His tears in the changing room spoke volumes. Our love for this guy was genuine as was our anger. I’m from the UK so cannot get close to the US experience. Politics is another story altogether – suppression affects many creeds, religions, races, classes, and gender etc. But to lose our universal human connection? We all come from the cradle of Africa, period.

Olaf Felts
Olaf Felts
3 years ago

The above simple story highlights the real issue here – sophistry has taken over. The above guy appears to be a decent human being who values people simply and reacted openly to an injustice as did his team mates and opposition. By rejecting ‘isms and difference and relying on compassion he transcends the current discourse with simple actions. All we have to do is respect each other with respect and courtesy. Painfully simple. That someone marked the above down, for whatever reason, evidences this basic truth about the dangers of the sophist.

Cathy Carron
Cathy Carron
3 years ago
Reply to  Abril Chivato

Much of the disparate COVID impact on blacks in the USA has to do with a variety of factors, none having to do with Trump. Many blacks are concentrated in urban areas and take public transportation to work and also work in many public jobs, exposing them to the virus. Blacks also suffer from obesity & diabetes at greater rates than others, disabilities that COVID preys upon.

Go Away Please
Go Away Please
3 years ago
Reply to  Abril Chivato

Abril
I’ve read your comments on this article. Always interesting to get a very different viewpoint.
The way I see it, if you have a valid case, and in some ways you perhaps do, you need to win over a lot of people to your case. The way BLM approach this is doing you no favours as you can tell from the responses you are getting to your points of view on here. And really it is the sort of people that are replying to you that you need to win over.
And you also need patience. I know, you will say you have been patient. But look how much has been achieved over the years. Don’t lose it all by being impatient now.

Last Jacobin
Last Jacobin
3 years ago

So, an international campaign to challenge racism divides us while the unearned hereditary wealth and privilege exemplified by the monarch brings us together? Not in my world.

David Barry
David Barry
3 years ago
Reply to  Last Jacobin

“an international campaign to challenge racism divides us”

Yes, because an international campaign to challenge racism has nothing to do with it. The “challenge racism” bit is simply a superficially respectable cover story for Marxist causes that have already failed and hardly anybody wants.

Paul Blakemore
Paul Blakemore
3 years ago
Reply to  Last Jacobin

That’s a very interesting point, though the answer to your rhetorical question is, ironically, ‘yes’.
Insofar as BLM+ is an ‘international campaign to challenge racism’ it is all well and good; but there is widespread scepticism about its methods and true aims. I certainly think that what we saw in Britain had much more to do with ‘bashing Trump/Boris/Brexit’ and generally expressing dissatisfaction among political groupings thwarted at the ballot box. If a movement truly wants to challenge racism is it wise to alienate millions of people and paint them as complicit in slavery and imperial oppression; to ignore the huge advances made in past decades; to ignore the history of the world in order to present a ridiculously biased, negative picture of modern Britain?
Did our MPs observe a minute’s silence for Nicole Smallman and Bibaa Henry?

Malcolm Ripley
Malcolm Ripley
3 years ago
Reply to  Last Jacobin

I think you might find a fair bit of the funding for the “international campaign to challenge racism” comes from people with “unearned hereditary wealth and privilege”. Which should make anyone stop and think, what’s really going on here. I would suggest divide and conquer. If the BLM doesn’t divide and conquer there is always the mask /no-mask division which heads of police encourage to aggressively “self police”. Finally to really ensure every last non wealthy citizen is thoroughly controlled and has the knives out for their fellow subjugated citizen: don’t use social media to spread “misinformation” says the government ad “Don’t feed the beast” they tell you. The “beast”!!! holy hell!

So if you don’t take the knee with your mask on (what 200 year old image does that conjure up!) and dont use the BBC for all your information then you are evil beyond comprehension and need to be punished….. I’m waiting to see what the official punishment will be , I’m sure it will be announced before the Autumn. Mask wearing BLM protestors will be the thought police.

NB for the avoidance of doubt my politics are firmly left but I totally reject this authoritarian stance that is currently oozing from BLM, pro-Mask , Pro-BBC supporting politicians and commentators. The same questioning internet searching for Covid truth also allows you to uncover the truth behind BLM and the disturbing link between the two.

michaelgray77eve
michaelgray77eve
3 years ago
Reply to  Malcolm Ripley

I’m firmly left too – but I left. Decided to join the Labour party once and get politically active. Met the people and changed my mind. All these arguments are just being regurgitated. Be nice if we could move on, sort of progress. What being socialist means these days is up for grabs and little to do with freedom, decency, intellectual rigour, equality, honesty, or the working class (remember them?). Finding a lot of agreement amongst my peers with your first sentence, last paragraph, which I share.