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Yes Boris Johnson is a bigot but he’s not the real problem

PICTURED: Boris Johnson

FOR WELL over a decade, journalists and political commentators have predicted it would happen. That the bumbling moppy-haired one would one day be handed the keys to №10. To the naive among us, it didn’t make any sense that a bigot with a well-documented record of dishonesty and incompetence during his time as both London mayor and the foreign secretary would get near the main chair in the ‘multicultural’ era but here we are.

Over the years — he’s offended ‘minority’ groups left, right and centre while endearing himself to his real target audience. Referring to Black people as ‘picaninnies with watermelon smiles’, comparing Muslim women to ‘bank robbers and letterboxes’ and defending colonialism as the ‘the best fate for Africa’ may shock some but it’s a warm fuzzy hug for the many who feel they’ve been effectively silenced in today’s multicultural, politically correct climate.

The aging band of predominately white male conservative supporters, who don’t care about facts or equality, have their champion. They believe the story of an innately superior ‘Great’ Britain which has been carrying the burden of immigrants and migrants for far too long.

They don’t care that this nation became ‘great’ by robbing and pillaging Africa, Asia and the Middle East or that EU migrants; the pantomime villains of the Brexit campaign — contribute more to the UK economy than they take. They want someone to make them comfortable with their privilege and prejudice.

Naturally many people from the aforementioned backgrounds as well as sympathetic white liberals are worried about the prospect of Boris Johnson’s leadership.

It’s like the playground bully running for school council — only he’ll be running the whole place and his jurisdiction extends far beyond the electronic gates. As with Trump in America, no one with a smidgeon of sense believes his pledge to ‘unite the country’ but like our American counterparts, we’re missing the point.

The problem isn’t the individual; it’s the mindset in the people they’re playing to and the complex institutions which create the conditions we suffer through.

Take racism as an example. Every politician; right or left, blue or red agrees it’s wrong and it’s now socially unacceptable to say certain things but actual racial discrimination hasn’t gone anywhere.

Today, black male graduates are paid an average of £7000 per year less than equally qualified white men and Black females paid £3000 per year less than their white counterparts. With the exception of Chinese people — no other ethnic group increased their participation in UK higher education than those from black backgrounds between 1993 and 2013 according to Government statistics.

However the black unemployment rate remained twice as high as it was for white people in the UK over those two decades which saw both Conservative and Labour governments in power.
At the same time in Britain as well as America, black men get longer sentences for committing the same crimes.

An investigation by The Independent found that 25% of black teenagers guilty of manslaughter were handed maximum sentences. Meanwhile, none of the white teens found guilty of manslaughter received maximum sentences, with the majority getting less than four years.

It’s also a factor in everyday society — a Guardian report found that people from black, asian and other minority groups (BAME) were three times as likely to have been thrown out of or denied entrance to a restaurant, bar or club, while 38% of BAME people said they had been wrongly suspected of shoplifting in the past five years, compared with 14% of white people.

One in four felt they had been stopped at airport security or customs because of their ethnicity.
In almost every facet of society, the same groups remain victims of injustice regardless of whether the Prime Minister says nice words and can sell a believable vision of change. No-one in recent times sold the concept of change, hope, and inclusivity like Barack Obama and his presidency ultimately resulted in little more than the illusion of progress and the faux warm feelings that come with it.

Whether in the UK or abroad, individuals like Obama give us all a false sense of security that everything is fine; that they’re moving toward a fairer society while business continues as usual. What Boris Johnson and Donald Trump bring to the table is a hefty dose of reality — there is no ‘we’, equality is not on the table and if we want change; we have to save ourselves. It’s certainly not pretty but perhaps, in the long run, it’s better for us to see things as they really are so we can act accordingly.

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