There is to be a by-election in the Lewisham East constituency, after Labour’s Heidi Alexander took up the vacant Deputy Mayor for Transport job at City Hall. This has provided an excellent opportunity to inspect the programmes of the various candidates and their parties. And for one party, it gives voters a chance to see just how shameless and vicious the far right has become in the wake of the Brexit referendum.
Clearly intent on splitting the far right vote, both UKIP, which has swerved right under the less than tolerant leadership of Adolf von Batten, and For Britain, for whom the Kippers were not quite raving enough, are fielding candidates. UKIP’s David Kurten is already a London AM, while For Britain’s leader Anne Marie Waters is, well, let’s have a look.
Ms Waters said this in a recent speech: “Multiculturalism is an anti-Western, anti-British concept … In order to ‘up’ inferior cultures, we must downgrade our own culture, and that’s what we’re doing. We’re allowing it to happen. And all I’m saying is stop … stop degrading ourselves … We have to change it. We have to change this ‘they’re all guilty of colonialism’ thing to … ‘they gave the world democracy’”. Yeah, right.
It was precisely because Britain did not give its American colonies democracy that they seceded and became the USA. But what Ms Waters is doing is recognisable from the far right playbook: pretend that we are not allowed to “stand proud and tall”, and then frighten the audience with claims about “culture” being “degraded”, which is not merely a far right idea, but one that comes straight from 1930s Nazism.
The test, as ever, is to put what the Third Reich did to Jews alongside what For Britain would now do to Muslims. We know where the former led; the idea that the latter is not intended to travel the same road is delusional in the extreme.
And that can be deduced from what Ms Waters is saying about “indigenous Europeans”, together with what she is also saying about Muslims. Following demands that the Tories address their perceived Islamophobia problem, she Tweeted “I'm calling for an inquiry in to: 1) FGM 2) Child marriage 3) Honour violence 4) Sharia law We must be told what these are, how prevalent they are in the UK, who exactly is carrying them out, and what are their justifications?” Inventing attributes for the Muslim bogeyman.
If she or any of her followers has any genuine evidence backing up any of those four headings, then they should take it to the Police. They won’t, because they haven’t. All that Ms Waters offers voters is scare stories - Anjem Choudary might be released early! Tommy Robinson’s jailing was ‘Orwellian’! Scary Muslims (tm) are stopping the cops from patrolling! - and more talk of her “culture” being downgraded.
What she is offering the electorate of Lewisham East looks like something that was lifted from the Nuremberg Laws. It sounds like something that was lifted from the Nuremberg Laws. And it quacks like something that was lifted from the Nuremberg Laws. Peddling the idea that “our culture” is somehow superior to, y’know, nudge nudge, “other cultures” is declaring racial superiority - but saying “culture” instead.
So hopefully this bigot and her followers will get no more from the upcoming by-election than a well-deserved lost deposit. We don’t need Nazism in the UK.