Naturally, these three controversial organisations, although seemingly possessing similar ideologies, differ on the political spectrum. One often sees baklava-clad EDL members throwing bottles and incoherently shouting racist remarks toward foreign pedestrians, or perhaps the BNP leader being intellectually dominated on Question Time. Or perhaps Nigel Farage having to defend a UKIP MEP after he slapped a BBC journalist over the head with his own leaflet. (http://www.theguardian.com/politics/video/2013/sep/20/godfrey-bloom-hits-michael-crick-video)
So naturally, the media appears to be full of disdain for these political ‘parties’ – let’s take a closer look and see what they *really* stand for:
UKIP – an instant look at their site shows them clarifying their “libertarian, non-racist” ideology – call me cynical, but when you have to explicitly illustrate that your party is not bigoted, there may be something wrong....
UKIP’s manifesto, as you probably know, is based around the threat of immigration. Ignoring the fact that immigrants contribute £15 billion to our economy, the general consensus of Britons, including myself, a second generation immigrant (!), is that there is an issue. The policy outlines the problems of the rise in school places required, which is again, an important, long term problem. Interestingly, the site still has the looming peril of incoming Romanians and Bulgarians, even after the New Years Day immigration fiasco fell flat. On the face of it, although some views seem to be slightly too right wing for our socialist values, they seem to be endeavouring to identify with the public – indeed, it seems they have gained the votes of some Tory supporters for the next election.
So what’s the issue? They’re dealing with issues us Britons worry about, while Cameron only cares about corporations. Alex Andreou writes in the New Statesmen that “Ukip’s manifesto is a collection of promises selected, seemingly, on the basis of “twenty things that really annoy people”, with no inkling of implementation method or any costings” – in summary, a reactionary party that will fail to deliver. Links with the controversial EFD, the £2 million expenses claimed and several party members going on inexcusably xenophobic rants reflect how UKIP is not only full of empty promises, but the organisation itself is a mess, with narrow-minded ideas forcing their way into the manifesto.
BNP – in my opinion, a shocking organisation with little redeeming features. This is epitomised by their warped view that "diversity" is, or at least will lead to, "White Genocide" Apparently, because “Africa is for Africans” and “Asia is for Asians” (I haven’t seen any travel bans recently?) the assumption is that ‘White’ countries (Yes, they actually said that) are for....you guessed it, the Caucasians. I could go on about the various racist and intolerant attitudes possessed by many a BNP member, but let’s go straight to the heart of the operation – Nick Griffin. His disgusting lack of knowledge about key areas of society he opposes, most notably Islam, is shocking. The first question in the video below reflects how his knowledge appears to come from Wiki Islam, a notorious site known for its horrible portrayal of the religion, and not the Quran itself. His social knowledge leads him to believe that the influx of Pakistani immigrants is the reason for Britain’s drug problem, and apparently because some ‘grooming gangs’ are of Asian descent, immigration is supplemented by crime. His views also spread to Jews - Griffin notoriously called the tragic event the "Holohoax", reflecting his anti-semitism. He then added to this by saying "There's no such thing as a black Welshman".
Now, I do agree (come at me bro) with some of their views. Their non-interventionist policy, in terms of human rights, puts them above the current ‘Big 3’, on the count that they would not have killed 500,000 civilians in Iraq in an unjust war. The feeling that the Elitists are leading this country to be part of a New World Order is also in line with my views (let’s focus on the observable issues though).
However, the idiotic members, and of course the easily unlikeable Nick Griffin, whose general demeanour I like to compare to his counterpart Peter from Family Guy, make this another undesirable, bigoted party. God help us if they even get a seat in Parliament.
EDL – have I saved the worst until last? Let’s take a look, again, at their site: “non racist, non violent and no longer silent” – again, sounding extremely terse and defensive. They have been in the media recently, with their leader Tommy Robinson joining an Islamic organisation called Qulliam, which aims to de-radicalise the radical and spread “Islam, not Islamism”. A victory for the lefties? Or just a PR move so Tommy can move up in the world?
The EDL, in their mission statement, describe themselves as a “human rights organisation” – a regional leader of Amnesty, I am appalled by this, especially when I see EDL demos (exceedingly poorly attended by the way) filled with drunken hooligans hurling bricks and bottles to make a statement against violence.
Their lack of Islamic knowledge is also disappointing – Islam “encases women in the burqa”? An irrational generalisation; Muslim women, for the most part, choose to wear it themselves, while those who don’t are often fearful of society’s backlash and abuse in the street.
However, it appears to be that the EDL’s main ideology is to keep Britain British – they don’t want, as is the general consensus, Sharia Law or radical Muslim clerics. This I understand, and agree with. However, their ignorance, xenophobia, radical manifesto and thuggish members means they are certainly a washed up organisation who take advantage of young, uneducated white members of society and influence them into their ways. It’s no surprise Tommy Robinson jumped that sinking ship.
Overall, it seems that the few redeeming features these organisations have are washed up in a sea of intolerance. It would certainly be a farce if any of them made any further step up in the world of politics.