|Nothing to do with race!||John Tyndall pours scorn on the Honeyfords of this world|
Remember the horrific race riots that took place in Oldham, Leeds, Burnley and Bradford over May and June. Well, it was all your imagination. Yes, there were riots in those areas, but they were not racial! How do we know this? Why, a cavalcade of politicians, journalists, community relations advisors and present and former educationalists have, for the past few weeks, been telling us so!
One of these experts has been Mr Ray Honeyford. Remember him? He was the Bradford schoolmaster who outraged the liberal establishment back in 1985 by writing an article in a Tory magazine criticising "multi-culturalism" a heresy for which he was duly sacked. But what did Mr Honeyford actually say to warrant this fate? In fact, he never said anything in the way of opposition to non-white immigration or the mixing of the races. On the contrary, all he complained about was that racial mixture was not going far enough or fast enough! What he didn't like was the tendency to classify youngsters in school as separate on the basis of their background cultures and to regard them as having different educational needs. He opposed the emphasis which some educationalists wanted to place on distinct Afro-Caribbean and Asian cultures, with those inheriting these being encouraged to value and feel pride in their cultural heritage and history. Honeyford wanted everyone and everything to be totally "integrated" so that we were all regarded as "British".
So, in effect, Mr Honeyford was not really a heretic at all. He dutifully toed the multi-racialist line and was an impeccable "anti-racist". His difference of opinion with the trends of the time was only over the method by which a mongrel Britain was to be enforced. In fact, he highlighted the difference which is really only a nit-picking difference between "multi-racialism" and "multi-culturalism".
So what is that difference? Well, as indicated, the multi-racialists want all of Britain to be one big stew pot in which Afro-Caribbean, Asian and white differences of culture and background are blurred and eventually eliminated. The "multi-culturalists", on the other hand, want Afro-Caribbeans and Asians to remain Afro-Caribbean and Asian in culture and identity though fully British in terms of their "rights". Get it?
Well, most probably the good citizens of Oldham and Bradford, et al, do not get it. As they behold their smashed windows, their looted shops and their burnt-out cars, this distinction between "multi-racialism" and "multi-culturalism" is rather academic to them. What most of them feel is that it was a bloody calamity that these immigrants were ever let into Britain in the first place and that the sooner they can be humanely resettled in their countries of origin the better.
Mr Honeyford however, would disagree. In his book, had everyone taken his advice and gone full speed ahead to "integrate" the different ethnic groups into a great "British" stewpot, a "melting pot", none of this would ever have happened.
So, whatever you may think, the riots in these northern towns may have been cultural; they may have been caused by poverty and unemployment; they may be due to the machinations of the frightful BNP. But never say they were racial. Mr Honeyford and his friends know better!