http://www.spectator.co.ukThe ideology of multiculturalism
is theoretically meant to build a more tolerant,
But in practice it is a deeply racist concept, one
that judges people by their ethnic origin and thereby
promotes division in our society.
a typical piece of multicultural nonsense, Ken
Livingstones adviser on race policy, Lee
Jasper who has advocated the creation
of black-only schools says that you
have to treat people differently in order to
treat them equally. But this relentless
focus on difference is only breeding grievance,
resentment and social dislocation. Where racial
identity lies at the centre of public policy,
there can be no sense of shared belonging, no
spirit of national unity. Urban
Britain is in danger of becoming nothing more
than a landmass inhabited by competing ethnicities.
The very basis of multiculturalism
is a contradiction of the democratic principle that
everyone should be treated equally, regardless of
their background or skin colour. Through its obsession
with racial identity, this pernicious creed actually
The first anti-racism campaigners
in Britain fought for equality, demanding government
action to combat overt racial prejudice in employment
and the provision of public services, especially housing.
But since the early 1980s the agenda of anti-racism
has changed. The goal is no longer equality but the
very opposite: the institutional recognition of racial
Two decades ago multiculturalism
was the preserve of the extreme Left in local government
and Ken Livingstones Greater London Council.
Everything from the recruitment of staff to the award
of grants was driven by ethnic considerations. Tragically,
what was once on the municipal fringe is now part
of the political mainstream. In the name of celebrating
diversity, we now have a civic culture that has elevated
racial difference into a system of governance. Right
across the British state, institutions are driven
by a concern to address the competing demands of different
ethnic groups. And in the process any ideas of fair
treatment and equal access have been lost.
In the publicly funded arts, for instance,
ethnicity is now a key factor in the making of grants. Almost
10 per cent of bodies subsidised by the Arts Council describe
themselves as black or ethnic minority organisations. British
culture is not a single entity; we should rightly speak
of British cultures, says the Arts Council. So Kala
Sangham, the Bradford-based Asian arts company, received
£1.5 million to establish a new centre of excellence
for South Asian arts. Similarly £2.75 million is earmarked
for the East Midlands AfricanCaribbean Arts and Apna
Arts to build a black arts centre in Nottingham.
Individuals can benefit too. There is
now an explicitly discriminatory book prize for the black
or Asian writer of the year, presided over by the Arts Council.
At theatres in Birmingham, Ipswich and Manchester, the posts
of writer-in-residence are reserved for blacks and
Asians while, in the name of positive action,
the Nottingham Playhouse, Manchester Royal Exchange and
West Yorkshire Playhouse have recruited three black directors.
In the same vein, a bursary of £30,000
was recently given to the Nottingham visual artist Hetain
Patel, as part of the Decibel diversity programme, a
national initiative to raise the profile of artists who
are from African, Asian or Caribbean backgrounds.
Taxpayers will be pleased to know the vital purpose to which
this cash will be put. Mr Patel decorates his body with
materials such as henna and kanku paste, which are used
in traditional Hindu ceremonies. His work is said to demonstrate
the displacement of Indian culture throughout the UK.
suspected of not fully embracing cultural diversity is threatened
with an axe.
Earlier this year, the Lake District National Authority
sought to drop its guided walks organised by volunteer rangers
because the participants were too white and middle-class,
while a mountain rescue team in the Pennines and an RNLI
crew on the Severn were reportedly both turned down for
lottery funding because they did not do enough to help the
disabled and ethnic minorities.
told him to forget about trying the BBC; as a middle-class
Anglo-Saxon male youve got no chance.
Even some of the ethnic minorities can feel aggrieved by
this approach. Anvar Khan, a freelance presenter, has said,
No self-respecting black or Asian person wants to
be pushed ahead because of their colour. Its patronising.
If anything, I think the BBCs push to recruit and
promote ethnic minorities will mean that the really bright
black and Asian people will leave the BBC to go and work
for companies where people dont assume theyve
made it because of their colour.
Every area of
public life is riddled with discrimination and segregation
masquerading as positive action.
housing is racially divided, with more than 140 black
and ethnic minority housing associations trumpeting
their services to ............
Apart from the police, many other recruitment
campaigns work openly in favour of ethnic minorities. The
Museums Association annually offers ten traineeships
and two bursaries to ethnic minority graduates to work in
the museum sector. The National Archives is now advertising
a ten-month Positive Action Internship worth
£15,300 to individuals of African, AfricanCaribbean,
Asian or Chinese descent. The Inland Revenue and Civil
Service are following the same route, providing specialised
work-experience placements for ethnic minority students,
while Birmingham City Council offers traineeships worth
£16,000 a year for black and minority ethnic
So-called cultural awareness
has also led to racial fragmentation in healthcare, education
and social services. The machine of state is now awash with
specialised outfits such as the Drug Action Team for the
Bangledeshi and Somali communities in Tower Hamlets, or
the Black African and Caribbean Mental Health Consortium
in Brent, which is presently recruiting an office manager.
All applicants must be of black African/Caribbean
origin, states the advertisement. Similarly the Leicestershire
Community Projects Trust is seeking an Asian Drugs Worker,
for which a high level of cultural sensitivity and
fluency in at least one South Asian language is essential.
And the Aids organisation the Terrence Higgins Trust is
searching for a £29,000-a-year Senior Black Gay Mens
Nowhere is free from such divisions.
In childcare, the government recently announced that it
wanted to see all pre-nursery provision responsive
to the needs of local black and minority ethnic families
through the purchase of culturally sensitive toys,
books and resources for staff. In Bristol there is
the Kuumba community resource centre, which provides a black
arts programme, the Jumoke nursery in a culturally
sensitive environment, the Bwerani multicultural and
inclusive play centre, and the Sankore Afrikan Caribbean
In a typical piece of multicultural
nonsense, Ken Livingstones adviser on race policy,
Lee Jasper who has advocated the creation of black-only
schools says that you have to treat people
differently in order to treat them equally. But this
relentless focus on difference is only breeding grievance,
resentment and social dislocation. Where racial identity
lies at the centre of public policy, there can be no sense
of shared belonging, no spirit of national unity. Urban
Britain is in danger of becoming nothing more than a landmass
inhabited by competing ethnicities.
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