More PC persecution

More PC persecution

Buried deep in the First Report of the Independent Review of Teachers’ Standards, presented to The Secretary of State for Education on 14th July, are some seemingly innocuous recommendations under the heading of “Personal and Professional Conduct”.

They are “showing tolerance of and respect for the rights of others”, and “not undermining fundamental British values, including democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty and mutual respect, and tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs”.

Free speech is a notable absentee in this list. And as Rod Liddle pointed out in the Sunday Times on 17th July (“A strict teacher is not an extremist”) after receiving this report Michael Gove gave head teachers new powers to sack members of staff with “extremist” beliefs. “This {Liddle correctly inferred}…means supporters of the BNP…”

Whatever you may think of the BNP, it is a legitimate political party and is treated as such by members of the police involved in counter terrorism, as I was told from the horse’s mouth at a recent launch of Matthew J. Goodwin’s New British Fascism: Rise of the British National Party.

Here an analogy may be helpful. If we invite terrorists (as in Northern Ireland) to eschew terror and they comply we don’t still call them terrorists. As Goodwin demonstrates, when Nick Griffin assumed the leadership of the BNP he instigated a modernisation strategy and to this end has renounced violent and confrontational methods of agitation along with the party’s admittedly anti-democratic heritage.

When will the members of our benighted political class finally learn that draconian and partisan policies intended to drive the ultra-right out of public life are incompatible with a free society?

Leslie Jones, 18 July 2011









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