Labour MP Sarah Champion has resigned from the shadow cabinet after she was criticised for penning an article in The Sun acknowledging the fact Pakistani Muslim men target white girls for sexual grooming.
The article, headlined, “British Pakistani men ARE raping and exploiting white girls – and it’s time we faced up to it”, read:
“Britain has a problem with British Pakistani men raping and exploiting white girls. There. I said it. Does that make me a racist? Or am I just prepared to call out this horrifying problem for what it is.”
Ms. Champion is the MP for Rotherham, where 1,600 girls were drugged, beaten, trafficked, and raped by mainly Pakistani Muslim men over a 10-year period.
She also told the BBC on August 10th that fear of being called racist is preventing authorities investigating grooming after a government report found the abuse in Rotherham had gone on for so long for that reason.
The MP initially defended herself by claiming she did not pen the opening sentence and editors had stripped the article of “nuance”. She insisted the article should not have been put out “in my name”.
“The Sun decided to make the headline and opening sentences highly inflammatory and they could be taken to vilify an entire community on the basis of race, religion or country of origin,” she said.
— Victoria Derbyshire (@VictoriaLIVE) August 10, 2017
However, emails later revealed her team had reviewed the article before publication and her assistant had emailed the paper to say she was “thrilled” with the final draft.
“Sarah Champion’s column, as it appeared on Friday, was approved by her team and her adviser twice contacted us thereafter to say she was ‘thrilled’ with the piece and it ‘looked great’,” a Sun spokesman said in a statement.
“Indeed, her only objection after the article appeared was her belief that her picture byline looked unflattering. Her office submitted five new pictures for further use.”
“I apologise for the offence caused by the extremely poor choice of words in the Sun article on Friday,” Ms. Champion said in a statement, announcing her resignation.
“I am concerned that my continued position in the shadow cabinet would distract from the crucial issues around child protection which I have campaigned on my entire political career.”
“It is therefore with regret that I tender my resignation as shadow secretary of state for women and equalities.”
Mr. Corbyn said he had accepted her resignation, commenting: “I look forward to working together in future.”
Telling the truth about tough issues is now impossible in the modern day Labour Party. Patheitc. https://t.co/AcwOZUfcKS
— Nigel Farage (@Nigel_Farage) August 16, 2017
Just last week, 17 mainly Pakistani and Bangladeshi men were convicted of grooming, drugging, trafficking, and raping vulnerable white girls in Newcastle.
One of the convicted men had once said: “White women are good for only one thing – for people like me to fuck and use as trash.”
The operation identified more than 700 victims of abuse that spanned four years in the region and was the largest case of its kind since Rochdale and Rotherham.
Ethnicity varies, however, with the Bristol gang being mainly Somali rather than South Asian.