Monday, November 10, 2003


I noted recently that all racism is not the same. Racism of some kind is just about universal but some forms are much more malign than others. I compared the racism of the socialist Hitler with the racism of the British Conservative party in the 19th century who made a Jew (Disraeli) their Prime Minister. Two rather different form of racism, don’t you think? And the contrast continues. Britain today is full of antisemitism -- so who have the "racist" British Conservatives just appointed as their new leader? Another Jew -- Michael Howard. And note the environment in which they have done so. As Melanie Phillips (via Last Night's BBC News) describes it:

For Britain is where the veteran Labour MP Tam Dalyell claimed a 'cabal' of Jews was controlling Tony Blair and George Bush - and was then promptly excused as a lovable eccentric. Where the following day, the BBC TV current affairs show Newsnight concluded that Dalyell had a case, and a 'tightly-knit' group of Jews really did control US foreign policy.

Where Israel is repeatedly dehumanised and delegitimised as an apartheid or Nazi state. Where almost two thirds of the public believe it is the biggest threat to world peace. Where attacks on Jews have increased

So who are the racists now? Let us look at deeds, not words. As far as Disraeli was concerned, his greater ability was what mattered when the Conservatives chose him and exactly that has happened again with Howard.

And that’s the sort of racist I am. I am realistic about group differences and have always refused to be silent about them but I am nonetheless happy to recognize merit in anyone of any background when I see it. And in the “deeds not words” category, perhaps I should mention that I DO have two Asians and one very brown person living in my own house with me. How many Leftists could say the same?


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