Race Relations

Brave? Or enablers of Nazis?

brave

Brave software, providers of ‘safe web browsers’ are the latest tech company to face our collective ire for their continuing support of nazi incel forum Kiwi Farms and their fascist followers. We have appealed to them via Twitter and email to acknowledge their part in the promotion and proliferation of cyberbullying platform Kiwi Farms and their creator Joshua Conner Moon but they have ignored us.

Brave has provided Moon with a link (that I won’t be sharing). When followers of Moon click this link they are able to download a web browser for safer surfing and donate funds to Kiwi Farms. Moon is having to come up with ever more creative methods to keep his hateful enterprise afloat and the net is closing in.

Brave software is enabling fascism and hate directed at vulnerable people. They have failed to respond to our requests so now we must escalate it to the next step.

Here is a list of Brave employees

(Linked to their Twitter accounts so you can go and say hi and tell them to stop platforming fascists)

Brendan Eich – Founder and CEO

Brian Bondy – Founder and CTO

Yan Zhu  – Chief Information Security Officer

Ben Livshits – Chief Scientist

David Temkin – Chief Product Officer

Brad Richter – Head of Design

Catherine Corre – Head of Communications

Jonny Ryan – Chief Policy and Industry Relations Officer

Tom Lowenthal – Privacy and Security Project Manager

(There are many more in their ‘about’ section)

Looking at their profiles  they appear to have a diverse set working for them. I’m sure once they are apprised of the situation they will be willing to do anything they can to help.. right?

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Hampshire Police in Racism Shocker

Hampshire constabulary is under investigation for institutional racism, with a staggering 19 members of staff alleged to have used prejudiced and inappropriate language. The complaint was filed by another one of their employees. Given the structural racism minorities are acutely aware of, this whistleblower deserves to be commended and supported through this trying time.When there are so many offenders concentrated in one place, we have to ask whether this case will be treated with the impartiality it requires, or whether it speaks to a culture in the workplace.

In all honesty I was surprised to find it was Hampshire constabulary they were referring to. My thoughts immediately went to West Midlands Police, or even The Met, given my personal experiences of their non existent race relations. Having been on the receiving end of racist abuse, from individual officers, to the inadequate response I was given when I reported nazi forums stacked with fascists threatening to rape and kill me, I can categorically state, the cops are the fascists, more often than not. They hate women, and minorities, we put ourselves at further risk whenever we interact with them, especially when we are seeking help.

The police force attracts a certain type of individual. Someone who is looking to settle scores, someone who wants the power to act with impunity. Very rarely you meet someone who genuinely wants to better their community, or a minority who wants to bridge the gap between the authorities and their marginalised group but these people, if they manage to hold on to their principles, usually leave and move on to teaching or social services. They realise they cannot change the system from within, it is too white, too patriarchal, too violent to contend with.

Consider this piece, in which the head of the national police chief’s council is quoted as saying hate crimes distract from the police’s core role (protecting her majesty’s estates?) which apparently involves responding to emergencies (how many of those are hate crimes?) and investigating burglaries (I’ve been burgled twice, prior to austerity cuts, and the cops were useless).

In actual fact, I agree with Ms Thornton. I don’t think the cops should be the ones to solve hate crimes, I don’t think they have the range of feeling you need to provide care and protection to vulnerable victims. I don’t think they are capable of treating rape and sexual violence with the sensitivity it requires. When we consider that cops are 5 times more likely to commit domestic abuse, and probably sexual violence too (not forgetting racism), when we pay attention to the sheer number of cops popping up in the mainstream media, for sexual abuse, for neglect of victims, and other hate crimes, case in point, then it is absurd that we expect these exceptionally troubled people to empathise with us when we are at our most vulnerable.

There has to be a better way.

Welwyn-Hatfield Council’s Appalling Taxi Team, James Vaughan and Councillor Fiona Thomson

Last month I reported on a disgraceful case in Welwyn-Hatfield where, according to Matthew Hopkins News a taxi driver was guilty of a minor offence of overcharging but during an offical PACE interview the Hackney Carriage Officer invented allegations that the driver was targeting the vulnerable and charging on a sliding scale based on the vulnerability of the passenger –

“So the more vulnerable the customer is the more you can charge them, is that how it works?”

According to the original article, after various complaints the driver served the council with a letter of claim in damages. I sought to find out how the story ended. Happily, Left at the Lights has learned that the Hackney Carriage Committee was held on 30 April 2019 and the driver was only given a warning.

I sought comment from the council, and received a lengthy statement from Margaret Martinus, Head of Law and Administration. The essence of it was, “Whilst the Council treats any allegations of racism with the utmost seriousness, on the basis of the information disclosed so far, the Council could find no evidential basis at all to support these allegations”.

This makes no sense. The MHN article said that there were two witnesses who complained of racism, aside from the driver. Even if those allegations were mistaken or false, they are evidence and unless the statements literally do not exist the council cannot say there is, “no evidentiary basis”. Furthermore, if a driver overcharged an elderly old man whilst using a sliding scale of charges based on the perceived vulnerability AND THEN made up wholly baseless allegations of racism AND THEN had a significant blogger publish the supposedly entirely false allegations naming all those concerned, how has said driver got off with a warning?

The answer is of course, that he would not have got off at all. The reasonable conclusion is that most likely the driver did have some evidence, then dropped matters once the decision was made to allow the council to save face.

To an outsider, it looks very like the council conceded. I asked Sam Smith, the author of MHN for comment and he said as follows –

“I can confirm that at a Hackney Carriage Committee meeting on 30 April 2019 the taxi driver only received a warning, which was fair in all the circumstances and what I had proposed on his behalf. As this matter is at an end, I have nothing more to say on it.

However as you live in Birmingham you might enjoy my recent article about your local Labour MP Jess Phillips. Before election Ms Phillips promised hardworking constituents and Party members she would take no outside jobs but last year declared around £45K in external earnings from TV appearances and writing.”

Whilst Smith and the Muslim driver are apparently willing to move on, I understand that local taxi drivers in Welwyn-Hatfield were already angry and had been demonstrating about the council. This cannot have helped matters and I hear that there may be a further petition and even an Owen Jones style unseat campaign. It would certainly be a slap in the face for the local Muslim community if Councillor Fiona Thomas, who is responsible for the taxi functions of the council, retained her cabinet role and I am sure that her leader Councillor Tony Kingsbury will bear it in mind carefully. He would not want to provoke community activism against Grant Shapps, the local MP. Turning to the council officers, they will doubtless be very careful about their future behaviour to avoid further media scrutiny.

White proverb: It is you who is the REAL RACIST

I wasn’t going to comment on the Emmerdale Shila Iqbal sacking primarily because I’ve never gotten into it, it seems like a very exclusive white environment that only the most compliant token minorities get accepted into and also because I have no sympathy for non black poc who use the N word but then I saw Anton Du Beke in the news, being treated the exact opposite to Shila, his use of the P word against Laila Rouass all those years ago seemingly having no effect whatsoever on his opportunities and I started to think about other white people who appear to be thriving despite their use of racial slurs and general racist vibe (think Jeremy Clarkson) and all the brown people falling by the wayside, once they’ve fulfilled their hallowed token status.

Shila Iqbal was sacked by ITV bosses when old tweets from 2013 resurfaced in which she uses the N word. This follows the sacking of Marc Anwar from Coronation Street when he was sacked for ‘racist’ tweets against Indians. That’s like Jamaicans getting shit for calling Africans the N word. It’s even more of a travesty when you consider white people consider themselves the referee, when they routinely deny poc’s lived experiences of what is and isn’t racist.

Anton du Beke is still employed by the BBC and looks set for a promotion by the looks of things, his sights set on Darcy Bussell’s vacant seat. The same BBC that sacked Tommy Sandhu for his ‘racist’ remarks against Pakistanis. As a Pakistani, I think he’s a bit dense and a chamcha, or a spoon, doing a great job of stirring things up but a racist? Would that be because Islam is racialised? Was he being racist to Muslims? Cos they’re both brown people from the same subcontinent otherwise. Don’t forget though, white people say you can’t be racist to Muslims cos Islam is not a race.. and yet.

This is the same BBC that platformed a swastika tattooed nazi without challenge on the news. The BBC that made Nigel Farage a household name, the one whose presenters are friends with Britain First’s leaders and downplays terrorist attacks against brown people suggesting ‘racial motive theories’ when assailants were heard screaming ‘white power’ for example. ITV isn’t that much better to be honest. From Corrie’s “more roots than Kunta Kinte” to the Midsomer Murders row (cos poc don’t live in the country, apparently) and more recently Vanity Fair (I switched off the quickest I ever have) to Victoria (empress of my arse), ITV is just as sentimental for the good old days of empire and raping and pillaging and world domination. The stoic civilised white person is just jolly in their jingoism, they don’t mean to offend, they just do. It’s those foreigners who are the real racists, with the real hurtful intentions (despite having little structural power).

White people invented this racialised system of deserving and undeserving. They divided and conquered minorities to maintain it. They devised eugenics to justify it. Some of those divisions are still being manipulated and yet still, white people evade justice for their role in creating and administering it. They still control perceptions of racism and who it does and does not affect. They punish people for it when they are the worst offenders and avoid scrutiny for it, keeping their jobs and privileges, erasing and rewriting narratives.

They must be stopped.

How did the UK get into this Brexit mess?

That’s what they’re asking, the political journalists. Like they’ve been on another planet for the past couple of decades, or only woke up to vote in the referendum. Theresa May as home secretary vowed to get rid of human rights and in order to do that they had to make themselves unaccountable to the rest of the European union and its court for human rights – a union that was forged to prevent the kind of atrocities Europeans are famed for, against their own neighbours more often than not.

If we were taught history truthfully then we would never have been left with the impression that Britain and its allied forces were fighting fascism and saving Jews. No, in fact East Europe wanted a piece of the action, with western Europe wielding power over whole continents as a result of various empires, Hitler even admired the British for the way they annihiliated entire cultures, slaughtering millions and modeled his empire on theirs. He coveted a ‘new world’ like America, another British endeavour. East and Central Europe was only doing what western Europe had been doing to the rest of the world and somehow this fact has gotten lost in history, the extended narrative around socialism and nationalism deliberately muddies the waters so we forget that it is white western imperialism that is the underlying cause for most of the wars of the past 200 years.

The union was set up to prevent further infighting between Europeans. Collectively they could continue to exploit the rest of the world but they formed an alliance to ‘never again’ turn on each other the way they had during the world wars. Imagine the unease felt by the rest of Europe when Britain decided to cut its ties and become a sovereign nation unaccountable to anyone, the way it was when it dehumanised my ancestors in the name of civilisation. Britain considers itself above the rest of Europe or it is saying that it cannot guarantee it won’t invade neighbouring nations and that’s why Europeans are antsy.

Lisa Nandy, the Labour MP for Wigan was quoted yesterday as saying “this is not normal” as a result of being accosted on the way in to cast her vote and was called a fucking traitor by rabid Leavers loitering outside parliament. The same Lisa Nandy who said “Labour should be a party of patriotism not placards”. She also said “I am very liberal in my outlook around immigration….But I feel very, very angry – like many of my constituents – that the system of free movement has allowed us to ignore the skills and aspirations of young people in towns like mine”. Nandy is by no means alone, when MPs and journalists were busy making similarly inflammatory statements we were on the sidelines booing them and warning that their words would contribute to a slippery slope into white supremacist nationalism, because human beings are just not sophisticated enough to leave it at a ‘debate’. Using emotive language like ‘angry’ then claiming ignorance when it all goes to plan, who do they think they’re kidding eh? When Theresa May said MPs were to blame for the Brexit impasse, Lisa said “Theresa May has trashed our democracy and put MPs in danger” so she knows how drip fed propaganda works.

Pander to racists and they will eventually start killing people, they were emboldened by your divisive rhetoric. You prioritised their hateful agenda and claimed they had ‘legitimate concerns’. Now they’re beating up police officers and bullying MPs under the watchful eyes of UKIP and the EDL and it’s only going to get worse.

The world is a stage and bread and circuses keep us all focused on the Brexit red herring. Brexit isn’t where this began. Brexit is a cover up, as I said many months ago. It’s a convenient smoke screen for more insidious operations. This government has already enacted a genocide against the British people with 100s of 1000s dead under austerity but it went through legal channels so there’s no backlash (yet). Only those personally affected have so far acknowledged its impact. Tyrant Theresa has condemned many others to a cruel death; from those who perished at Yarlswood to those of the Windrush generation, who spent their last moments afraid and destitute having been wrongly deported under the ‘deport first ask questions later’ policy, (surely a grave human rights violation).

This government isn’t looking to enact a genocide, they are already in the midst of it. Pushing through Brexit would just have made it a whole lot easier.

So I put this to the politicos who haven’t a clue, why don’t you? You get paid to seek the truth no? Are you being paid to repeat the party line? Are we in the ‘jump ship’ phase because this venture is doomed to fail? Is the ire of the British public limitless and non discriminatory like we said it would be? Did you genuinely think you would be fine, because you’re white? I genuinely want to know.

Genocide is still on the cards

Conservative Party Conference, Day One, Manchester, UK - 01 Oct 2017

Mandatory Credit: Photo by James Gourley/REX/Shutterstock (9101397q) Theresa May in the Conference Hall Conservative Party Conference, Day One, Manchester, UK – 01 Oct 2017

Theresa May’s hostile environment has succeeded. Muslims are afraid, asylum seekers are afraid, the Windrush generation and their descendants, the disabled, young people, students, those holding a European passport.. the list goes on. Following her frankly aimless announcement the other day when she shifted the blame for the Brexit farce on MPs, leaving journalists and the general public agog at her impending statement only to dash any hopes they had of resolution or her resignation, we woke up to the news on Thursday that five Birmingham mosques were targeted in a racially motivated terrorist attack. This comes on the heels of a government pledge to double the security fund for religious buildings in the wake of the New Zealand terror attack, following several credible reports that the UK is next.

These apparently random attacks are anything but. Look at the way in which the Brexit debacle has been fanned out to build a sense of urgency and resulting impatience, the rollings news is relentless in its breakdown of every little seemingly irrelevant twist and turn. I’m so jaded by the mainstream news I watch as regular folk are swept up by the narrative because they still think they’re playing by the rules and the comedown they experience when yet again, Teflon Theresa issues a non statement and lives to see another day. She fucked the mandate and survived. Her party, embroiled in tax fraud scandals and electoral fraud continues to hold onto power, despite bringing the country to its knees, at home and on the world stage. Regular folks are plodding by in a daze, completely bamboozled by it all and if they’re criminally minded, as white supremacists are, they’re going to take matters into their own hands. Even her own MPs are speaking out against her toxic narrative, labeling it divisive and an incitement to violence, proving that parliamentarians know exactly what they’re doing when they allude to problematic groups.

Brexit means Brexit they said, which translates to ‘pakis out’. The longer they eke this out the more regular fascists are going to react, because they have been indoctrinated by the media and politicians. Theresa May is a narcissistic sociopath. She didn’t get to where she is through hard work and dedication, she’s manipulative and ruthless. She doesn’t meet with victims of terror attacks, look at the way she treated her own citizens after Grenfell. Even the queen, albeit begrudgingly, rolled up to pay her respects but not the tyrant Theresa. She’s a snake charmer. Her knowing looks down the camera and sneaky side eyes might work on her gammon henchmen but she must be apprehended for her crimes, which are countless. What use are security measures on an environment of her own creation? This is like a really badly written script with no thought for continuity and the only reason it has so far prevailed is because we have let it. Similarly, Farage and his (reportedly) 100,000 strong Brexiteer army are already causing chaos across the UK. Their ‘go slow’ protests on busy motorways are a sign of things to come. This is the entitlement of little Englanders, caked spittle in the corners of their thin lipped gammon traps, who’ll threaten violence against workers striking for better working conditions but turn up like Morris dancers with bells on when there’s some racism to be had.

We can’t afford stuff apparently so 100s of 1000s of needy and vulnerable British citizens have died but throwing millions at mosques because the hostile environment was successful, we’re going to just ignore that are we? Think about how that will impact on fascists. Not because we care about their feelings but because we want to stay alive. Think about this attack on a young person in Stanwell, just going about his business only to be confronted by a horror movie monster wielding a knife and baseball bat. Sajid Javid says he is with us, which is ironic given that his party is squarely to blame for the hostile environment all around us. Add to this the revelation that police forces in the UK are failing to identify almost half of all suspects in racially motivated attacks and you can probably understand why it feels like the worst is yet to come.

Google ‘racially aggravated’ and select results for the last week. These page 11 stories are dotted through national and local newspapers, sporadic and understated so we’re never alarmed at the rate with which they’re happening. If these attacks were being committed by men of colour they’d be splashed all over front pages, given the centrefold, we’d read nothing else for weeks. White ISIS has been allowed to brutalise minorities unchecked and now they’re grown too large to slam on the brakes. I still maintain there simply aren’t the numbers to for one nation to carry this on their own, which is why Nazis have joined forces all over the white supremacist west. This process took years, and could have been prevented.

Intense human suffering is on the horizon. Atrocities we said we’d never see again are billed for the foreseeable. Sadly I don’t think we are going to avoid it. Only once they have committed the unimaginable will we be able to justify a violent retaliation. The Silicon Valley trials has a particular ring to it. I can think of several world leaders I’d like to see rotting in The Hague. I can only hope I will survive long enough to see them brought to justice.

20190324_174813

(One of the comments posted after I blogged on Kiwi Farms and their response to New Zealand authorities request for data)

New Zealand’s National Treasure

In the days since the white supremacist terrorist attack on a mosque in Christchurch New Zealand we’ve seen things that have shocked us, angered us, left us feeling helpless. As the British government doubles the security fund for religious buildings to make mosques safer here, repercussions are felt all over the world as we feel them here. However there is one shining light pouring through the cracks, soothing the almost physical pain at times, and that is New Zealand’s human prime minister. Never mind that they’ve just had a terror attack in which so many perished, I want to live there.

From the way she has handled the victims and their families to the reforms she is firing through and the respect and dignity with which she carries herself, knowing exactly the right thing to say and do, well I’d hang up my anarchist hat for her. She refuses to refer to the terrorist by his name, because he wanted notoriety and I love her so hard for that. She labelled it a terrorist attack, actions that place her head and shoulders above our government and media. She is a just leader. She understands coercive power and control and toxic masculinity, she won’t compromise on her values. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern doesn’t believe putting a scarf on her head, as a feminist, is contradicting her beliefs because she’s not doing it for herself, but for them, those who’ve so cruelly suffered in her nation. I’m sure this tiny gesture would have been so lovingly received, in this world the bar is so low that even basic respect is a radical act.

jacinda

I know that my heart flutters when I see her in the news. I feel an affinity with her because she knows right and wrong and how to feel and think appropriately. She’s like Jeremy Corbyn in that respect. I’m sure they would listen to ideas they don’t necessarily believe and could be swayed with logic. I think they’re open to regular people in a way that world leaders the world over just aren’t. The 1% have a lot to answer for.

New Zealand is a place I’ve wanted to visit. Never met a Kiwi I didn’t like. They tell me that it isn’t so great, there are problems lurking under the veneer but then isn’t everywhere like that? Surely what matters is the resistance to these issues? I don’t care that there will always be racists so long as there are plenty of us willing to punch the fuck out of them.

Plus these guys, they’d be good to have on side, don’t you think?

haka

Love to the people of New Zealand for respecting and honouring humanity.

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For balance (I do tend to get carried away*): a Muslim perspective from inside New Zealand. Sadly it’s the same everywhere

The hypocrisy of New Zealand’s ‘this is not us’ claim

https://f7td5.app.goo.gl/i6eJR

*with other people’s good intentions