23 April 2009

Whitey: The Forgotten Genocide

Ah, Nick Griffin. Nick has taken umbrage with the phrases “Black Briton” and “British Asian”, preferring the term ‘racial foreigners’, as they are of course ethnically incapable of making a proper cup of tea, playing cricket on the village green or apologising when you step on their foot. He’s not just taken umbrage though. No, that’s not enough. Nick “Holohoax” Griffin has called these terms a “bloodless genocide”. Let’s just think about that for a second. Killing six million Jews, the event for which the term was coined: Not a real genocide. Letting nig-nogs and rag-heads be the same nationality as proper people: genocide. Which reminds me rather of this bizarre tirade against miscegenation. And this reminded me of a PC-gone-mad story in the Mail and Telegraph, about local councils removing obscure Latin words and phrases from their official documentation.

Before we look at the connection, let’s look at the individual claims. First, Whittaker: He has this interesting idea that “everybody says” the solution to the RACE problem is flooding white (and ONLY white) countries with swarthy third-world immigrants, who will intermarry, do something vague and then that’s that sorted. Now I’ve never seen anyone claim anything along those lines. I’ve occasionally heard na├»ve utopian musings on how in the future everyone will be so mixed-race that nobody will have anything to fight about and live in peace and harmony, but that’s it. I’ve never come across it as an actual policy. Also I’m pretty sure Bob Whittaker is a Nazi and wouldn’t be particularly upset if someone did killsixmillionjews. He’s also bum-chums with Nick Griffin. But “The White Riddle” is shooting Fisk in a barrel, so I’ll leave it at that for now.

Now, the Mail/Telegraph: The Telegraph just seems to be angry because the Telegraph likes Latin and ranting about PC. But the Mail pulls an uncharacteristic trick and manages to blame it on immigrants. In the headline, no less. This is odd, as removing Latin words is far more likely to help less well-read Britons than immigrants. If anything, this could actually hinder learners of English, as Latin words are so often used in the same or similar ways in several languages. It may even help and encourage them to use expand their vocabulary instead of relying on “instant English”. The absolute worst this does (if you consider helping new arrivals integrate to the system a bad thing) is leave immigrants in much the same position as they were, and help Britons with a smaller academic vocabulary and/or literacy problems. The academics quoted, or at least as they are quoted by the Mail/Telegraph, also seem to have the wrong end of the stick, claiming it is an attempt to “purify” and not simplify the language, or acting as if it applies to the entire English language instead of just official council documentation, saying:
This sort of thing sends out the message that language is about nothing more than the communication of very basic information in the manner of a railway timetable.

Which, in this context, it pretty much is. The excellent Five Chinese Crackers has more on this, one of the councils in question points out that it’s bollocks, and The Spoof, which is kind of like the Daily Mash but with credulous tabloid xenophobia instead of funny jokes, has done an article about it too.

But what I found particularly chilling about both rant and deceitful non-story was the idea of “genocide” and “ethnic cleansing”. Notice that the worst anybody has to suffer in even these nightmare scenarios is having to look at or share their nationality with a black person, or, worse still, slightly reword their documents. So we have to ask, what, in the eyes of Nick Griffin, Bob Whittaker and Professor Mary Beard, is so bad about ethnic cleansing? For normal people it’s the mass killings, the disappropriation, the forced population transfers, the rapes and generally all the violent stuff that is inevitably necessary if you want to wipe out an entire race. However in these cases their complaint seems to be the subsequent absence, reduction or minor alteration of a people or culture. Obviously a bit sad in its way, but if the only methods of achieving it are passports, consensual sex and Ctrl+H, that’s not really much to worry about. How can anyone look at history and decide that the most significant and worrying thing about genocide is the loss of a culture?

What worries me about all this is not the fact that it alters the meaning of the terms, that it cynically abuses their emotional punch for rants that are either trivial, racist or both, or even the hypocrisy of using the idea of ethnic purification to whip up hatred of immigrants. It’s the fact that, when it comes to systematic extermination based on arbitrary criteria, they’ve clearly got their priorities horrifically skewed, and nobody seems to notice. With terms like ‘genocide’ and ‘ethnic cleansing’ being bandied about so generously in certain circles, especially in relation to the “white indigenous population”, it’s something definitely worth keeping an eye on.

22 April 2009

Clinical Deportomania

My goodness, what an unexpected development! Those twelve foreign Pakistani Muslim immigrants from the Religion of Peace (one having British citizenship) who were arrested on terrorism charges have all been released without charge. But look! Some of them have been handed over to immigration services. So we may see people deported on the grounds that police thought they wanted to do something that actually they didn't want to do.

Now I don't think this is enough to deport, and being an optimist I doubt the courts will. So it might well turn out some of them have violated the terms of their visas, and that the ones who haven't have downloaded child pornography. We'll see, anyway.

Update: I love the Daily Mash. Especially the caption.
Another update: Tabloid Watch, though not as funny, congratulates the rozzers on their excellent timing.

21 April 2009

Links

Never really imagined myself saying a sentence like this a year ago, but it's a good day for videos on Chicken Yoghurt.

19 April 2009

Good Old Lenin

Brief but brilliant blog-post on the BBC from Lenin's Tomb, on the the appearance of police brutality.

10 April 2009

Hold your Horses

Maybe I'm just being naive, but isn't it a little premature to be discussing stepping up your already strict security checks on a country's nationals, solely based on the fact that some of them have been arrested but not yet charged on suspicion of something?

09 April 2009

Topical Joke

For everyone that wonders why so many comedians make fun of Christianity and nobody ever dares joke about Islam, but Geert Wilders and the guy from Little Green Footballs still have all their hands, I have an idiotic pun for you:
Q: Why is it called pesach?
A: Because you "pay a sakh"!

Stare at the screen blankly, click on the links, think about how much major religious celebrations usually cost, and then nod in realisation, possibly risking a mild smirk, and you're well on your way to understanding the Islam-jokes conundrum. There's some more here. Try and understand them without the explanations.

If you still don't see what I'm getting at, tell me something amusing about Christian theology or the social rituals associated with it. And then tell me one amusing fact about Islam that doesn't involve the slightly off-colour topics of blowing up innocent people or paedophilic rape. If you're the sort of person who regularly whines about not being able to tell jokes about Islam, I imagine you can't. If you still think specific religious jokes will work on people with a different religious upbringing, try explaining that Eddie Izzard skit to a Catholic from outside the UK.

Obscure Muslim in-jokes welcome, by the way, and a happy and kosher passover to anyone who's into all that.

08 April 2009

ACAL

Peter Smyth, chairman of the Metropolitan Police Federation, finding an indefensible way to defend the indefensible.
"On a day like that, where there are some protesters who are quite clearly hell-bent on causing as much trouble as they can, there is inevitably going to be some physical confrontation. Sometimes it isn't clear, as a police officer, who is a protester and who is not. I know it's a generalisation but anybody in that part of the town at that time, the assumption would be that they are part of the protest. I accept that's perhaps not a clever assumption but it's a natural one."

This is absolutely no argument whatsoever. Smyth seems to be claiming that pushing over a member of the public who was walking along with his hands in his pockets would be somehow mitigated in the slightest by his being a protester. A few left-wing bloggers are quite rightly getting very angry about this, but they seem to be making a similar assumption: that his not being part of the protest somehow makes the crime of assault worse, when the real issue is that he was not taking part in any illegal or violent activity at the time. Splitting hairs perhaps, but we should not at this point be implying that the police have any right to arbitrarily attack protesters, especially when idiot authoritarians like the chairman of the Metropolitan Police Federation think it makes assault and possible manslaughter OK.