With all the furore over the Radical Independence protest at the UKIP press conference in Edinburgh (ahead of the Aberdeen Donside Scottish by-election on June 20) I couldn`t help but notice the rather vociferous use of the words Nazi, Racist, Bigot, Scum & Fascist aimed at Nigel Farage.
The Belfast News Letter website has a good video of Farage talking in the Edinburgh pub prior to the protest.
The protest has been deemed largely a student protest and sure enough two of the leading protestors are from Edinburgh University Students Association, namely Max Crema, the Vice President of Services & President James McAsh, both of whom are currently embroiled in court proceedings and a motion of no confidence for bringing the association into disrepute after Crema tweeted “f**k old people”
Upon accusations from Crema of having racist policies Farage reasserted that:
“We are a non-racist, non-sectarian party and unlike every other party in British politics we actually forbid people who have been on extreme left or right-wing extremes from joining our party.”
Radical Independence told the Huffington Post UK:
“Farage came up to Scotland to spread his racism and bigotry here – we showed he’s not welcome. His party UKIP have always achieved a derisory vote in Scotland but Farage thought that could change after their recent local elections successes in England. In 2014 we finally have the chance to get rid of the political system at Westminster that pours fuel onto the bigoted fire of Farage and UKIP. Scotland wants to be a country that welcomes immigrants – but we need independence to make that desire a reality.”
Presumably they missed the UKIP manifesto:
– We aspire to ensure that any future immigration does not exceed 50,000 people p.a.
– …future immigration for permanent settlement will be on a strictly controlled, points-based system similar to Australia, Canada and New Zealand
And presumably tyhe missed Jamaican candidate Winston McKenzie, Ugandan candidate Sushil Patel and Pakistani UKIP candidates Bobby Anwar & Harry Mirza Jahangir..and the Greek donor Demetri Marchessini
— Harry Mirza Jahangir (@Oilvedic) May 17, 2013
Whilst Protester Liam O’Hare rubbished accusations that the protests were anti-English in nature:
“What you saw yesterday was a group of people who are there to protest against Mr Farage’s anti-immigration, anti-Muslim and anti-immigrant sentiment.
“Those people were there as internationalists, as people who are saying that in Scotland we want a country that welcomes immigrants, that has equality for all, and that Mr Farage and his ilk are not welcome here.”
— Bobby Anwar UKIP NW (@Bobbyukip) May 17, 2013
Several journalists on Twitter reported the crowd chanting: “Leave Scotland, go back to England!” and “You can stick your Union Jack up your a*se!”
Scottish Liberal Democrat leader Willie Rennie commented:
“It was deeply ironic when these self-proclaimed anti-racist campaigners told an Englishman to get back to his own country. Anti-racists turned racist but were too ignorant to notice. I am sure most people in Scotland will be appalled at this behaviour. These people do not speak for Scotland. Alex Salmond must speak out against this attack on free speech.”
Anyone suggesting there wasn’t anti-English hatred on the Royal Mile yesterday during Farage’s visit clearly wasn’t there.
— Alan Roden (@AlanRoden) May 17, 2013
Farage later branded sections of the Scottish nationalist movement as “deeply racist” and motivated by “hatred of the English” . Posting laterd on Facebook:
“Thanks for all the kind messages from Scots appalled at what happened yesterday and also at the BBC interview this morning. UKIP won’t let a few hard core anti-English nationalists get in the way of trying to have a proper debate about Scottish independence”
First Minister Alex Salmond stated that
“We can frankly do without Ukip, who dislike everybody and know absolutely nothing about Scotland. If there’s been any law-breaking – and that’s yet to be established – then obviously we condemn that, as we always do in Scotland, but you’ve got to get things into context.”
The Yes Scotland campaign distanced itself from the protestors despite a Vote Yes banner being unveiled.
Picture of EUSA trustee Mike Shaw being arrested for pouring coke over UKIP member. twitter.com/EdJournal/stat…
— The Journal (@EdJournal) May 16, 2013
Scottish Conservative MSP Alex Johnstone said:
“Alex Salmond simply pays lip service when it comes to condemning abusive language in his own party. Yesterday’s abuse handed out by separatists was another shameless example of the lengths they will go to to hijack the independence debate in Scotland. If such abusive comments are allowed to continue unchecked, the next 18 months will descend into little more than an anti- British hate campaign.”
Interestingly Alex Massie and David Torrance have compared UKIP & The SNP numerous parallels.
With all the fuss the actual UKIP election candidate Otto Inglis has had very little coverage.
UKIP MEP Roger Helmer debated one of the protestors who insisted UKIP had racist polices and in another interview he debated Joan McAlpine of the SNP who declared UKIP were the BNP is abetter fitting suit.
— Winston McKenzie (@WinstonMcK) May 4, 2013
Might be an idea for Farage to attend next Saturday`s launch of Radical Independence in the Aberdeen with his Jamaican, Ugandan and Pakistani candidates along with his German wife and Aberdeen candidate Otto Inglis and his Japanese wife?