London mayoral candidate Shaun Bailey is under fire for a 2005 pamphlet in which he described his escape from a sink estate and said multiculturalism was a bar to integration, eroding Britain’s sense of community, and turning it into a “crime-riddled cesspool”.
In the Centre for Policy Studies pamphlet, titled No Man’s Land, the black politician described how he was able to escape the fate of many other young boys on his estate — “Just from my immediate peer group, 12 have been in prison” — largely through his joining the Army Cadet Force (ACF), which provided him with “role models who were men and who were not of the street [who] introduced me to a British outlook on life”.
Controversially, he also mentioned how his single mother sent him to a school away out of the area so as “not to leave me among too many black children”, because she “had seen how black people interact with black people – what they say to other black people – that means you can’t go forward [and] get trapped in your own poor community”.
It was his comments under the heading “Multiculturalism” which have prompted the most anger, however.
“Among the working class, unless you are one of those ‘Queen and Country who support the football team’ sort of British people, you are lost,” he wrote.
“You bring your children to school and they learn far more about Diwali than Christmas. I speak to the people who are from Brent and they’ve been having Muslim and Hindi days off. What it does is rob Britain of its community. Without our community we slip into a crime-riddled cesspool,” he added.
Accommodating Muslims has made the UK the beautiful, diverse and welcoming country it is today.
A country that makes me proud to call myself a British Muslim.
— Naz Shah MP (@NazShahBfd) October 3, 2018
Bailey went further, suggesting that “by removing the [Christian] religion that British people generally take to, by removing the ethics that generally go with it, we’ve allowed people to come to Britain and bring their culture, their country and any problems they might have, with them.”
He added: “Lots of people come to Britain and think they’ll be rich. But then they find it’s not so easy. Then they are resentful. They are alienated because they haven’t been exposed to the good things in Britain – our ethics. That’s why we’ve now got a nation of people who wouldn’t do anything for the country. They wouldn’t fight for their country. Why would they?”
Naz Shah, a Labour MP who was briefly suspended for anti-Semitic social media posts and criticised for liking and retweeting a tweet suggesting child grooming gang victims “just need to shut their mouths for the good of diversity”, was among several left-wing politicians to hit back, insisting that “Accommodating Muslims has made the UK the beautiful, diverse and welcoming country it is today.”
Labour MP Andrew Slaughter also piled in, saying it was “increasingly clear that [Bailey] holds views that are at best divisive and at worst Islamophobic.”
Bailey has himself been subjected to left-wing bigotry for his right-leaning views, however, with white, upper-middle-class Labour MP Emma Dent Coad having previously branded him a “token ghetto boy”, “scumbag”, and “low-life”.