Former UK Equality Chief: Jo Cox Death Used to Enforce ‘Woke’ Orthodoxy on Multiculturalism

jo cox
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Trevor Phillips, the former head of the Commission for Racial Equality and the Equality and Human Rights Commission which succeeded it, has warned that the death of Jo Cox is being exploited to enforce “woke” orthodoxy on diversity and multiculturalism.

Phillips, himself the son of migrants from British Guiana, as the modern-day county of Guyana then was, warned that the Labour MP’s slaying by a man espousing far-right views is being “used as a way of demanding compliance to a politically ‘woke’ orthodoxy” in an article for UnHerd.

While the former Labour member of the London Assembly stressed that Mrs Cox “seemed like my kind of person: leftish without being tribal [and] ready to change her mind”, he said he was concerned that the “more in common” mantra taken up by her multiculturalist admirers after her death was “just not true”.

“[H]er death is, increasingly being used as a way of demanding compliance to a politically ‘woke’ orthodoxy that will cause the very misery and division she entered politics to combat,” Phillips explained.

“[I]n all too many cases, authorities, public and private are being bullied into pretending… significant cultural differences do not really exist.

“Even now, for example, authorities in towns such as Rotherham and Rochdale remain reluctant to associate the child grooming scandals with social norms within the largely Pakistani Muslim neighbourhoods in which they took place,” he continued, noting that, to this day, “pages of text and a glossy video presentation” about the rape gangs fail to touch on the issue.

As an another example, Phillips noted that “the practice of ‘cousin-marriage’ is legally prohibited [in] China, Korea, half of the United States… [But] in some British communities the practice of cousin-marriage is regarded as unexceptional, and indeed desirable.”

“There are fears that ‘consanguinity‘ may be contributing to a rumoured increase in debilitating conditions among babies in these groups,” he explained.

“But any widespread discussion of the cost, human and economic, of this phenomenon, has yet to take place for fear of ‘stigmatising’ such groups. In other words we prefer to maintain the fiction, even if it means unnecessary suffering of children and parents.”

“Nervousness about acknowledging racial difference that cannot simply be attributed to white prejudice prevents companies from collecting data that might help them to improve service to customers,” Phillips added, recalling that even as chairman of the Equality and Human Rights Commission he found it “almost impossible” to commission research into the relatively high achievement of Asian children in education, for fear the conclusions would be uncomfortable.

“The fiction is clung to most fiercely by liberal opinion – particularly white liberal opinion,” he chided.

Despite his own migration background and broadly left-liberal political stances, this is not the first time Philips has criticised excessive diversity as being harmful to social cohesion.

During his leadership of the Commission for Racial Equality, he criticised state-sponsored multiculturalism for encouraging “separateness” and insisted the state should “assert a core of Britishness”.

More recently, he took aim at “superdiversity” and the “virtue-signalling” attacks on free speech perpetrated by its defenders.

“Squeamishness about addressing diversity and its discontents risks allowing our country to sleepwalk to a catastrophe that will set community against community, endorse sexist aggression, suppress freedom of expression, reverse hard-won civil liberties, and undermine the liberal democracy that has served this country so well for so long,” he warned.

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