Wake me up when woke is over

To paraphrase Douglas Murray in the opening pages of his book The Madness of Crowds how can you be against or indifferent towards social justice? That would mean your for social injustice, surely?

How can you dare to question #BlackLivesMatter? Don’t you care about the lives of black people?

Murray aptly describes the minefields in which we now live. It’s all too easy to provoke an adverse reaction on social media, at work, or in any social gathering simply by holding convictions, expressing an opinion, questioning a point, or telling a joke that someone finds offensive. Murray cites several examples of people who have lost their jobs and reputation virtually overnight for saying something triggered alarm bells that brought the hounds hard on their heels.

You don’t have wait long for fresh examples. JK Rowling has recently attracted flak from the Twitter mob for daring to hold opinions that are not aligned with the woke dogma. Her crime is to suggest that anyone who menstruates must be a woman. For suggesting this she has been called out as transphobic.

Such is the furore that she’s now written an essay explaining her reasoning, and it is a very reasonable argument, but I doubt she will escape the hounds. Once the *phobic or *ist label is stuck to your back you’ll never shake it off.

It’s there for life and all those who ever committed the equally heinous crime of cultural appropriation in their careers are now very nervous. You might be forgiven if you offer a cringing apology for your old jokes and caricatures as Leigh Francis (Keith Lemon) has done for his sketches in Bo’ Selecta, but it will never be forgotten and it’ll be held in reserve,just to keep you in your place.

The Woke Tsunami

The woke movement is pushing through a new tidal wave of severe censorship that is toppling once popular TV shows as well as statues of long dead white men.

It has been announced that David Walliams and Matt Lucas’s Little Britain (winner of several BAFTAs in the 2000’s) and Come Fly With Me have been removed from Netflix, BritBox, and the BBC’s iPlayer (of course) because someone, somewhere decided that the sketches in which Walliams and Lucas appear as non-white characters are no longer considered appropriate for modern tastes. So goodbye Ting-Tong, Taaj, Moses Beacon, Omar Baba, and Denise ‘Bubbles’ DeVere.

Gone With The Wind has been pulled by HBO too. The fact that produced the first Oscar for a black actress wasn’t enough to save it.

How long before the book burning starts?

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The Madness of Crowds: Gender, Race and Identity; THE SUNDAY TIMES BESTSELLER
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Collateral damage or actual targets?

Most people will point to the chilling killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis as the trigger for this seismic movement but the pressure had been building up for some time. The protests that erupted in the USA and the UK after this appalling death have harnessed the latent energy within all kinds of grievances, real or imagined.

The police officers and the horses injured in the protests In London last weekend are explained away as collateral damage from a small minority of violent individuals in an otherwise peaceful protest, but are they? The UKBLM’s GoFundMe page mentions this objective:

Developing and delivering training, police monitoring and strategies for the abolition of police. 

https://uk.gofundme.com/f/ukblm-fund

The ACAB (all coppers are bastards) graffiti is a clear expression of the target for some of the fury, but the defacing of the plinths for the statue of Churchill, the attempt to set fire to the flag on the Cenotaph are clear indications of hate toward this country’s heritage.

So is the BLM movement just about fighting back against racism, systemic or otherwise?

Apparently not. The answer can be found the UKBLM GoFound me page:

In the New World of Woke reality is turned on its head:

  • Words are violence (if you use words to challenge the dogma)
  • Silence is violence (if you are indifferent or don’t agree with the dogma)
  • Physical violence is not violence when directed against coppers, property, statues and symbols
  • If you criticise the physical violence you must be favour of the things hated by the ‘activists’

Far Left, Far Right

The far left is at the vanguard of this wave that is creating an Orwellian nightmare of censorship and destruction. The AntiFa mobs are behaving like the fascists they claim to be hunting know, ready to beat up anyone who admits to voting for Trump or who wears a MAGA hat. The poison has now spread to the UK in which a generation of young and angry recruits with a poor grasp of history are ready to fill the void in their lives by converting to the Temple of Woke.

Those on the left in the UK are seizing the political opportunity generated by this turmoil. The Labour Party, having had such disasterous results in elections in recent decades are marching alongside the protesters, hoping to pick up votes, but for all their wokeness it is the Conservatives who have produced real results when it comes to demonstrating diversity in high office:

  • The first female Prime Minister – Margaret Thatcher
  • The second female Primer Minister – Theresa May
  • The first BAME Home Secretary – Sajid Javid
  • The first BAME female Home Secretary Priti Patel

The Slave Trade (again)

As I mentioned in this post from 2017 Britain and the British Empire contributed far more good than harm to the world and these attacks on its heritage are blinkered, hypocritical, and contradictory.

This post from January 2020 covered the subjects of immigration and xenophobia and seems even more relevant today.

Removing statues and changing names

The hit list of statues that the woke want to see removed includes Sir Francis Drake, Lord Nelson, and many others. This morning the BCP Council in Dorset announced it was removing the statue of Baden-Powell from Poole Quay.

If people are going to demand that historic statues are torn down in the UK, what then of the statues and artefacts abroad?

The list of UNESCO World Heritage sites includes these two examples. Note the descriptions:

Historic Bridgetown and its Garrison

Historic Bridgetown and its Garrison, an outstanding example of British colonial architecture consisting of a well-preserved old town built in the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries, which testifies to the spread of Great Britain’s Atlantic colonial empire. The property also includes a nearby military garrison which consists of numerous historic buildings. With its serpentine urban lay-out the property testifies to a different approach to colonial town-planning compared to the Spanish and Dutch colonial cities of the region which were built along a grid plan.

Antigua Naval Dockyard and Related Archaeological Sites

The site consists of a group of Georgian-style naval buildings and structures, set within a walled enclosure. The natural environment of this side of the island of Antigua, with its deep, narrow bays surrounded by highlands, offered shelter from hurricanes and was ideal for repairing ships. The construction of the Dockyard by the British navy would not have been possible without the labour of generations of enslaved Africans since the end of the 18th century. Its aim was to protect the interests of sugar cane planters at a time when European powers were competing for control of the Eastern Caribbean.

As well as destroying or removing statues the woke wave has had another effect, the changing of names.

The Weald School in Billingshurst has decided that its school houses, Austen, Darwin, Elgar, Livingstone and Wilberforce, should be renamed after Queen star Freddie Mercury, nurse Mary Seacole and Baroness Tanni Grey-Thompson.

Not content with that they’ve also dropped plans to name a house after J.K. Rowling (see above).

What sort of country have we become if the names Austen, Darwin, Elgar, Livingstone, and Wilberforce are no longer deemed suitable as names for school houses?

Do you want to make the world a better place?

Of course you do.

  • You want to see an end to human suffering and injustice
  • You want to see everyone treated with dignity and respect
  • You want to see a world in which people are free and happy to be who they want to be

But while the mobs are tearing down statues in the UK the slavery, rape, robbery, and human misery of migrants crossing Africa to reach the northern coasts continues. The slave markets of Libya are still open for business and there are many other examples of murder and mayhem, oppression and destruction, but you won’t hear much about them because the media is obsessed with the idea that Britain and the US are racist countries.

The fact is that these are tolerant, open, and diverse countries, albeit with a lot of work still to do, and we shouldn’t rest on our laurels nor lower our guard, but if the voices of BAME people on the right in politics were heard more often you might just get a more balanced view.

Last update on 2020-10-31 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API