Saturday, August 04, 2007

Boris can never be credible candidate when he describes black people as 'piccaninnies'...

Difficult to see how Boris Johnson can remain a contender for London Mayor after the Guardian reveals today how he describes black people as piccaninnies and talks about water melon smiles of Africans.

Thankfully, our country has moved on from the 1950s generation of my parents when terms like that were widely accepted.

Today, I suspect as many white Londoners as black Londoners will find Boris's colourful language offensive. I hope they agree with the mother of murdered Stephen Lawrence that he is not fit to be Mayor of our multi-cultural capital city.

David Cameron's quest to find a credible Tory candidate to take on Ken Livingstone has been seemingly endless and everyone knows he was scraping the barrell when Boris agreed to stand. But if thinks the answer to Ken is Boris, his judgement is worse than anyone thought possible. Mr Cameron needs to once again back to the drawing board...


David Boothroyd said...

Hi there Phil. If you were around Deeping St James and in the Labour Party in the early 1990s you may remember my aunt.

Newmania said...

Lincolnshire is relatively unusual in the composition of its population, being one of the least ethnically diverse counties of the United Kingdom (98.5 percent of the population describe themselves as "white"). Over recent years inward migration by people from ethnic minority communities has increased (particularly to population centres such as Lincoln) but the absolute number of non-white Lincolnshire residents remains very low.

Thanks for the Sermon Phil.

Anonymous said...

What a silly post. All getting rather desperate from the Guardian. Livingstone's statements a few weeks ago talked of being Mayor until 2016. And now most polls show Boris beating him! If this is the first attempt to smear him, then I suggest you try harder. Boris has obviously rattled the lefty establishment. And he will win.

1. Your spelling is wrong Phil. Rarely reflects well on an article, especially when the Guardian got it right(remarkably).
2. Johnson made very reasonable remarks. His major criticism was reserved for the lunatic legislative idea of limiting what people could say in their own homes(ie. prosecuting people for talking about "niggers" in their own living room). A good idea? I think not. In any case, a word is not offensive merely because some people choose to be offended(an idiot's charter). I doubt most people(black or white) understand the origins of the word or its versatile use - Phil didn't even know how to spell it!
3. Most people realise there WAS hysteria after the Lawrence murders. A perfectly understandable reaction to a murder turned into a PC witch-hunt. Any sensible person knows the conclusions and recommendations have damaged the operational effectiveness of the Met.
4. Livingstone is hardly a role model in this regard. The list of his racist statements is endless. His remarks about Israel and the Jews are disgusting(I'm sorry Mrs Lawrence didn't mention that in passing), but then that is OK because they are Jews(!). Livingstone even got on the news here last year, with his brainless remarks about Japanese POW camps on the subject of...their embassy paying the congestion charge!(hardly related).

And...DC didn't choose Boris. He volunteered. Londoners will decide if they want him to be the Tory candidate. Your pathetic smear attempt shows that you(Toynbee, the Grundian and the rest) realise his popularity...and it obviously irks you. Tough.

fairdealphil said...


thanks for the spelling lesson and my heinous crime of the missing 'i' in piccaninnies.

i remembered the two c's and i remembered the three n's, but forgot the final of of the three i's...

no wonder i failed my 11-plus.

so take a house point young oakeshott for correctly looking it up.

(hope you looked up the meaning too - in my dictionary it says piccaninny is definitely offensive.

but spelling lessons from young michael...the lad's got some neck...

he spells reasonable wrongly, gets the spelling of Tory MPs wrong, spells time with an o, and misuses the word lose when he means loss...

the words pot, kettle and must do better come to mind!

i'll reply to others later - back to the barbecue.

fairdealphil said...

i've corrected the spelling of 'piccanninies' - hopefully.

trust the missing 'i' didn't spoil your sunday...

fairdealphil said...

i have deleted michael oakeshott's latest comment.

he's clearly does not understand the what offensive means.

or perhaps he does...

Anonymous said...

You seem to delete anything you don't agree with these days Phil. A bad habit, but then a socialist habit. Also the sure sign of a loser in an argument.

fairdealphil said...

Wrong again Michael.

I've published endless comments that i don't agree with and will continue to do so.

I will also continue to delete offensive comments.

Have you considered there might be a valid reason why to date, you're the only one that gets deleted...?

fairdealphil said...


so because i live in Lincolnshire, you think i should not be allowed to have an opinion when a politician describes black people as 'picanninies' and Africans as having 'water melon' smiles..?

And you assume i know nothing of London because i don't live there...(despite working there for a decade...!).

Anonymous said...

Michael Oakeshott claims: 'most polls show Boris beating him! [Livingstone]'.

In fact the only poll to show this was based on a sample of just 170 people which even on Tory blogs is being taken with a pinch of salt.

Although some commenters such as Oakeshott spring to the defence of Boris Johnson it must be obvious that Johnson's approach and his description of 'piccaninnies' and 'water melon smiles' is inconsistent with being a candidate for one of the major parties for the position of London mayor.

You may be able to get away with it in places like the Daily Telegraph, but most Londoners don't read or sympathise with the Daily Telegraph. Johnson's comments suggest he never considered running for elected office in the most diverse city in Europe.

(It is worth noting that the Telegraph piece which contains the 'water melon smiles' comments and the references to 'piccaninnies' is also a strong defence of rail privatisation, something that is unlikely to endear him to public transport users in the capital).

The regular defence of Johnson on the Tory blogs like Iain Dale's site is that the article was written in a satirical tone. Oh well that's alright then!

Johnson's article stated:
'It is said that the Queen has come to love the Commonwealth, partly because it supplies her with regular cheering crowds of flag-waving piccaninnies; and one can imagine that Blair, twice victor abroad but enmired at home, is similarly seduced by foreign politeness.'
Boris Johnson, Daily Telegraph, 10/01/02

He goes on: 'They say he [Blair] is shortly off to the Congo. No doubt the AK47s will fall silent, and the pangas will stop their hacking of human flesh, and the tribal warriors will all break out in watermelon smiles to see the big white chief touch down in his big white British taxpayer-funded bird.'

Johnson's supporters are clutching at straws when they defend this as satire. All they are doing is showing that they are insensitive to the legitimate concerns of black Londoners.

But in fact Boris Johnson seems to have form when it comes to using the phrase 'piccaninnies'.

Take this from the Observer.

'Rod Liddle recalls that when he and Johnson went to Uganda together to look at the work of Unicef, Johnson cheerily remarked to the Swedish Unicef workers and their black driver: "Right, let's go and look at some more piccaninnies".'
Lynn Barber, Observer, 5/10/03,6903,1055894,00.html

Rod Liddle would have little motivation for making this up. So unless Liddle tells us otherwise, we can be confident that this happened.

Johnson appears happy to casually use a phrase about black people that is offensive and grotesque. It is hard to see how he can get beyond the core Tory vote whilst being willing to write this kind of vile rubbish.

It raises broader questions about the Labour party than just Boris Johnson's mayoral bid. How is it that such public statements are tolerated in the Tory party?

Johnson's positions on this are indefensible and out of step with London.

fairdealphil said...

unfortunately, i've had to delete another comment from Michael Oakeshott.

Anonymous said...

Hahaha Phil can't take the heat!

Victory is sweet!

Newmania said...

And you assume i know nothing of London because i don't live there...(despite working there for a decade...!).

Its the fact that you like so many others of your kind moved out that is the point . Why was that?

Will B said...

Right... lets run with this idea that Boris is a dirty racist. Surely if Boris is a racist, then Ken is no better? What with his remarks on Jews and the like? I think we should be told. What you think Phil?

fairdealphil said...

Will b:

Whatever you call Boris, with his record of gaffes, it's no surprise that when he puts himself up as candidate to be Mayor of our most multi-cultural city, that his library of articles should be trawled to see what sort of person he really is...

I don't know whether calling black people 'piccaninnies' is acceptable at Boris's Bullingdon Club, but it surely is the language of our Colonial past and should long ago have been consigned to the dustbin of history.

It's no surprise either that Boris thinks the Macpherson report was driven by political correctness.

The Tories never wanted an inquiry into the Stephen Lawrence murder. They refused calls by the Lawrence family and others for an inquiry.

Macpherson only happened thanks to the Blair Government – and it has become a defining moment in tackling the institutionalised racism identified by Macpherson.

And is it really any surprise after what Boris has spouted that the mother of the murdered boy should have a view that he is not an appropriate person to run multi-cultural London?

Ken apologised for the remarks he made to a hack from the London Standard who doorstepped him as he emerged from a party.

Let's hope Boris has the good grace to recognise his need to do the same.

Will B said...

So if Boris says sorry then he is a credible candidate by your standards?

I have to say though, I find Ken to be repulsive simply for his support of and friendship with Yusuf al-Qaradawi, the gay hating Islamist.

Or is that what makes Ken, and not Boris, an appropriate person to run multicultural London? Strange alliances with Islamic thugs? :-/