Assuming you know who the Nazis were and assuming you have even the slimmest understanding of human nature, you’ll appreciate that despite the horrific things that the Nazi party were responsible for, not everyone who wore a Swastika was a supporter of the Nazi regime beliefs.
Today we know the facts. We know that approximately 11 million people died during the Holocaust – including about a third of all Jewish people alive at that time, and 1.1 million Jewish children. But during the Second World War, most German men and women were kept in the dark of all the details. Some may have turned a blind eye when faced with the realities of surviving the Nazi regime; others did not even know the horrors that were happening in concentration camps, a sad truth beautifully described by the book Friedrich by Hans Peter Richter. When the war ended, many of these people were shocked by the footage of the liberated camps, but hindsight makes it easy for us to categorise everyone who was a member of the Nazi party together.
Ignorance may have been an excuse for some supporters of the Nazi party. Ignorance is no excuse for any supporters of #BritainFirst. (Tweet this)
Hopefully, this article will prove to be a redundant warning. Hopefully, the political riot-party of Britain First will consume itself and be forgotten. I hope this is the case because unlike Europe in the early 20th Century we are no longer shuttered by a lack of information. One search on Google will show exactly what Britain First is really about. In fact I would welcome you to have a read of Wikipedia’s information on them.
Britain First is a far-right nationalist political party and movement formed in 2011 by former members of the British National Party. Britain First campaigns primarily against mass immigration and what it sees as the Islamisation of the United Kingdom, and advocates the preservation of traditional British culture. The group is inspired by Ulster loyalism and has a vigilante wing called the “Britain First Defence Force”. It attracted attention by taking direct action such as protests outside homes of Islamists, and what it describes as “Christian patrols” and “invasions” of British mosques. The party was founded by Jim Dowson, an anti-abortion campaigner linked to loyalist militants. Wikipedia.
Your political beliefs are a direct representation of you as a person. They are a statement of your principles, going beyond merely who you vote for. Who inspires you is also a statement of your character. If I found out that any one of my friends, family or colleagues openly supported Britain First, they would be as good as dead to me.
In a nutshell, Britain First claims to want to take Britain back to “traditional British values”, but this could mean anything from open combat with claymores to quiet tea and biscuits.
That aside, it’s not to say that it isn’t well thought out: their banner of a lion’s head, the Union Jack and the royal blue ribbon has been designed to be as British as possible (all that’s missing is a bulldog and a double decker bus) and their social media tries to manipulate us into supporting them by leveraging our support of British icons like Princess Diana – who no doubt would turn in her grave if she found out what her name was being used for. Despite this, it is clear that their message is still one of racism, of segregation, isolation and aggression – no different to what precipitated the Apartheid Regime in South Africa or the Holocaust.
It is also the very same technique that was used by the Nazis to manipulate people. Today we recognize the stiff-armed salute as being definitively Nazi but in the early 1900s, that was how Americans pledged allegiance – the Bellamy salute was only replaced by the modern hand-over-heart gesture in 1942 because of this. The Swastika was (and still is) considered to be a sacred symbol in Hinduism, Buddhism and Jainism. The Nazi party took these well-known symbols and corrupted them, changing how they were viewed by the entire world. Britain First seeks to do the same with Princess Diana and other British symbols.
Britain First is openly hostile to Islam, gathering around homes and mosques to incite aggression from Muslim communities so that they can film it for their barrage of social media campaigns. The footage is edited to the point where it loses all relevance to the truth and becomes nothing more than fuel for them to tote to their followers.
Yesterday it was Judaism, today it’s Islam, tomorrow – who knows? Britain First gains strength by their followers being angry and feeling outraged. The internet is flooded with news of IS and political crimes. Islam is an easy target for a party built around inciting anger and it’s easy to get people angry when they don’t know the facts or are afraid of anything different.
IS does not represent Islam any more than the KKK represent Christianity, but Britain First are only interested in amassing support for their campaigns. And sitting at the top of it all is Paul Golding, a despot who sees himself as a “great man” leading a revolution to bring Britain back to the British. Although he may dismiss being labelled as a “white supermacist” it is a label that fits.
While completely overlooking how important it is for Britain to have a diverse population to avoid becoming isolated in the same way South Africa was during the Apartheid Era, he is nothing more than a bully; nothing more than a troublemaking upstart who verbally abuses people and cries “I’m the victim!” the moment he gets smacked. And he gains support from other people of the same ilk.
But no matter how many people support Britain First, it is still simply a schoolyard gang, powerful only within one playing field. They will never gain respect from international communities and they will never gain positions of power in Parliament. No matter how avid their supporters may be on Facebook and Twitter, the majority of them will inevitably realise what they are really supporting and decide to stop. When you’re throwing petrol onto a wild fire it doesn’t take long to work out your mistake.
Hopefully, this will be the case.
Hopefully, Britain First it is destined to fizzle out as their supporters realize that Britain is built around the ideals of cooperation, respect and diversity and that the world Paul Golding is toting is a dystopian one where he is sitting at the top in a big castle.
The longer you remain a supporter to Britain First, whether as an active rally member or just a Liker of their Facebook page, you will be tarred with the same brush. Should Britain First become more than just a mob of ignorant hatemongers, history will remember who gave them power and you will find yourself being labelled alongside the Nazis and the racist monsters of the NP.
For you, ignorance is no longer an excuse.