One of UKIP’s most senior European candidates has refused to apologise after she was pictured making an offensive hand gesture at protesters. Janice Atkinson made the ‘one-fingered salute’ after members of the People’s Assembly of Ashford had screamed abuse at elderly UKIP supporters.
According to Kent Online Ms Atkinson apologised for what she did saying she “was not proud” of her actions, but she added: “I was angry that some of our supporters including pensioners were being called racist bigots and fascists. I got angry but I don’t regret it.”
In recent weeks various far-left groups have been protesting against UKIP members right across the country. On 7th May staff from Breitbart London filmed a UKIP rally where protesters had lined up to shout foul mouthed abuse at anyone who wanted to listen to Nigel Farage.
The protest was arranged in party by Unite Against Fascism (UAF), a group that has previously been linked with extremism itself. During the protest one activist called Breitbart London’s Managing Editor a “faggot” for wearing a pink shirt.
Members of the People’s Assembly of Ashford maintained their protest was peaceful. Maria Pizzey, a local Green Party activist, said: “She made personal comments about my body size and when I told her I would quote her widely she said “I don’t care where you f***ing post this, just f**k off!”
Ms Pizzey does not just consider UKIP racist, her Facebook profile contains allegations against a wide range of politicians. She specifically accuses Nick Clegg, David Cameron and Theresa May of “blaming immigrants” for economic problems. She also claims that “Eton vultures” are “preying on the NHS”, and she has posted offensive content related to Her Majesty The Queen.
The People’s Assembly of Ashford are just as controversial. On their website they list supporters including the Unite General Secretary Len McCluskey and Mark Serwotka from the PCS Union. They are also backed by the Chairman of the Communist Party of Great Britain, Bill Greenshields.
Like communist North Korea, the group is led by a dead left-winger. Whilst North Korea’s Eternal President is Kim Il-sung, who died in 1994, the President of the People’s Assembly is Tony Benn who died two months ago.
The incident in Ashford highlights wider concerns that the left are deliberately bullying and intimidating UKIP members. Nigel Farage has himself been attacked a number of times, and his rallies are regularly disrupted by mobs.
Free speech advocates fear that the left have chosen to beat UKIP through intimidation and shutting down debate rather than through genuine democratic means.
Despite the attack on her, and her ill judged response Janice Atkinson is UKIPs second candidate in the South East region after Nigel Farage. She is therefore almost certain to be elected as an MEP.