Scottish Tories youth wing chairman caught up in new anti-Semitism row

From The Courier: The chairman of the Scottish Conservatives’ youth wing has been accused of anti-Semitism after using a phrase developed by the Nazis.

James Bundy, an economics student at St Andrews University, posted on social media at the weekend about a BBC package about gender stereotypes and children that the corporation was using “his taxpayers money….to promote cultural Marxism” – sparking a backlash from some quarters.

The tweet was removed after The Courier asked the Tories about it, but Scottish Green MSP Ross Greer said it was “utterly unacceptable” for a leading figure within a mainstream political party to “use and normalise” a term which has such anti-Semitic underpinnings.

Cultural Marxism was a conspiracy theory developed in Nazi Germany to demonise Jews, and is a term consistently used by far-right groups such as the BNP.

Norwegian far-right mass murderer Anders Breivik also used the term over a hundred times in his “manifesto” before committing the Utoya Island massacre and Oslo bombing in July 2011.

[Read full article on The Courier website…]

Tory MP Michael Fabricant has apartheid-era South African flag on his mantelpiece

From Channel 4 News FactCheck: Michael Fabricant has been captured on video standing in front of what appeared to be the flag of apartheid South Africa on the mantelpiece of his parliamentary office.

South Africa used the tricolour design between 1928 and 1994, and it was flown throughout the apartheid era, when South Africans were forced to live separately along racial lines and non-white citizens were openly discriminated against.

The flag became a symbol of the apartheid system and was regularly set on fire by protesters in a show of defiance.

Earlier this year, the Nelson Mandela Foundation called for the old flag to be banned from public display after became a feature of demonstrations by white farmers in the country.

The foundation said: “These displays demonstrably compound the pain experienced by millions of black South Africans who suffered under apartheid and continue to struggle under its legacy.”

Asked why he had an apartheid-era South Africa flag on his mantelpiece, Mr Fabricant replied on Twitter: “It’s alongside an old soviet-era USSR Hammer & Sickle flag – just out of shot. The cameraman can confirm. They are places I went on work visits in the 1980s. I am neither a Communist nor a supporter of apartheid.”

[Read full article on Channel 4 News website…]

18 Tory councillors and candidates were suspended for racism or abuse in April

From Evolve Politics: 18 Conservative councillors and council candidates have been suspended from the Tory Party within the last month alone for alleged racism and abuse.

Despite the wall-to-wall coverage from the likes of the BBC of Labour’s struggles with anti-Semitism, the right-wing press has been extremely reluctant to report the sheer scale of racism and abuse emerging from the Conservative Party.

Following former Tory Minister Baroness Warsi exposing the fact that there are now “weekly occurrences of Islamophobic incidents” within the Conservative Party, the Muslim Council of Britain demanded that the Tories begin an inquiry into the racism epidemic engulfing the party – a demand which the Tories have flat-out ignored.

The BBC and the right-wing media have, for whatever reason, completely failed to bother reporting the story.

[Read full article on Evolve Politics…]

Tories in new race row over identity checks for elections

From The Guardian: Tory Government plans that will force people to prove their identities at polling stations in May’s local elections risk disenfranchising members of ethnic minority communities, according to a leaked letter to ministers from the equality and human rights watchdog.

In a move that will fuel controversy over the treatment of migrants in the UK following the Windrush scandal, the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) has written to the Cabinet Office minister David Lidington, raising its serious concern that the checks will deter immigrants and others from participating in the democratic process.

Under the new government voting rules, being trialled in several local authorities at the 3 May local elections, people will be asked at polling stations to produce documents proving their identity – such as a passport or driving licence – before casting their vote. Currently, no such proof is required.

The EHRC says evidence of supposed fraud is minimal and warns that there is a real risk that legal residents who might not have a passport or driving licence – or might be reluctant to produce them at polling stations – could be disenfranchised as a result.

[Read full article on Guardian website…]

Tory MP slammed for Gypsy/Traveller comments

From TFN News: A Tory MP has been roundly criticised by campaigners and for comments made about Scotland’s Gypsy/Traveller community.

In a YouTube video, Moray MP Douglas Ross is asked what he would do if he were prime minister for a day to which he replies “tougher enforcement against gypsy travellers.”

Lynne Tammi of campaign group Article 12 in Scotland, said Ross’s comments serve only to reinforce negative social representations of the Gypsy/Traveller community in Scotland.

[Read full article on TFN News website…]

27 times the Tory Party have had a racism problem

[From the Daily Mirror…]

1. The time David Cameron went to apartheid South Africa
2. When Boris Johnson described black people as “piccaninnies”
3. When the magazine edited by Boris Johnson published an article claiming ‘black people have lower IQs’
4. The councillor who posted a picture of a gorilla alongside a critical comment about an Asian Labour councillor on a blog
5. The councillor who said Romanians would ‘stick a knife in you’
6. The MP who said members were treated like Jews in Nazi Germany after the expenses scandal
7. The councillor who complained about ‘foreign names’ among parliamentary candidates
8. The councillor who moaned there were “too many P***s” in his town
9. When Lord Tebbit told Baroness Warsi to be quiet after she spoke out about Islamophobia

[Read article with full descriptions on Daily Mirror website…]

A dossier on racism in the Conservative Party

From Unite the Union: This dossier was put together from news reports in the local and national media and is far from comprehensive.

But it shows is that the Conservative Party is regularly beset by allegations of racism against its MPs, councillors and candidates. It’s also clear that only rarely do such instances – even when particularly offensive – result in the person being expelled from the Party.

The cases include Tory elected representatives using racist abuse like “Pakis”, “pikies”, and “piccaninnies” – as well as several anti-semitic or Islamophobic remarks. But most appear to have been allowed to continue their membership and even to represent the Conservative Party

[Download the dossier (PDF)…]