Why Give Britain First What They Need?

Footage has emerged allegedly showing Britain First leader Paul Golding facing attempted violence whilst out shopping. Although the sight of someone as odious as Golding fearfully retreating into a Curry’s store can’t fail to generate some level of amusement, I’d like the perpetrators and celebrants to consider the following: You are selfish and are only helping the dangerous cause of those you hate.

Britain First are every bit as sinister as you might imagine. This is a group who storm mosques during prayers to intimidate worshippers or rally in the streets under the cross of Christianity.

Not to mention they are currently under investigation for inciting hatred and can count Darren Osborne among their supporters (a man currently facing terrorism charges for ploughing a van into a group of Muslims in Finsbury Park). They will also share any piece of misinformation across social media just so long as it’s sufficiently anti-Muslim. Well, until they were banned from Twitter that is.

If I switched on the breakfast news tomorrow morning and learned that the leaders of Britain First had taken a stroll off a cliff (preferably hand-in-hand), I’d barely be able to muster a shrug before spooning another heap of muesli into my mouth. However they are not going to, so where does that leave us? Attack them in the streets you say? Make them so fearful that they will stop publicly spreading their hate? You must be joking.

These people aren’t afraid. They spit in the face of fundamentalist Islam every single day. What can you threaten them with that the theocratic loons haven’t already? The truth is, incidents of this kind are great for them. They rely on them. And they only make them shout louder.

For all the cheering this clip has produced amongst my fellow liberals, the only winners here are Paul Golding and Britain First. This pointless altercation will make the newspapers, which inadvertently advertises Britain First’s ‘cause’ to the uninitiated. Free marketing of this kind is invaluable. Golding, with his fresh glow of martyrdom will also get to address his supporters with “See? They can’t defeat our ideas so attack us in the streets”.

How is increasing support for Britain First and emboldening their existing support going to help ethnic minorities? It isn’t. But at least you got your five minutes of internet fame. And that’s what it’s all about. These two jokers went camera in hand, seeking infamy—not justice. Giggling away in the knowledge that they’d just secured some internet gold. Hash tag ‘punch a Nazi’.

People behave like this for their own gratification. They want to be celebrated as heroes across the internet. And depressingly, they will now receive such rewards–despite their criminality.

And thanks to their hard work the racist far-right now have an example of a thuggish ethnic minority to point to in service of their hateful stereotypes and biases. Cui bono?

And what happens when people like me decry vigilante violence in the streets because they fear it will only embolden the far-right and hurt ethnic minorities further? They are smeared as ‘far-right apologists’ in the tawdry leftist game of ‘Pin the label on the heretic’. A sad state of affairs indeed.

This has been a good day for the far-right and Britain First.

Stephen Knight is host of The #GSPodcast. You can listen to The Godless Spellchecker Podcast here, and support it by becoming a patron here.

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