« Daily Mail On James McGrath | Main | Johnson The Columnist »

June 24, 2008

Comments

Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

Mr. Stop Boris

Is anyone in the know - e.g. you - likely to get an opportunity to ask Munira why Boris didn't know about the changes to Rise, and why he specifically agreed that carrying on with the previous anti-racism message sounded fine to him, two days after the news release had gone out about it?

I'd love to know what she'd say to that, as it appears she's doggedly pursuing the idea that Boris was in some way involved in deciding this new approach at the moment.

Steve Farr

Munira Mirza "We have changed the emphasis...

What is this "We" thing all the time? There she goes again, trying to grab at what ever credibility she can muster for her own unique and peculiar race ideology.

Then there is "My opinion and the Mayor’s opinion". She doesn't miss a trick. At every opportunity now putting words into Boris' mouth. So that's how it's done eh?

Cindy

I just watched Munira Mirza's performance. She came across very well - intelligent and engaging. Her answers on multiculturalism and anti-racism were persuasive and very non-James McGrath.

Boris is astute to have hired her.

Helen

In response to Andrew Boff's questioning about the "pathetic" way in which St George's Day is currently celebrated she said that she hadn't read anything about how Londoners celebrate St George's Day. I got the impression that she's adept at spewing theoretical guff about The Arts but doesn't actually have a clue what's going on. She's in good company, then.

Steve Farr

I've just done the fast forward to Munira's bit, about 54mins in. The RISE festival bit is about 1hr 9mins in. The "for the record" bit is 1hr 11m 30s in.

Re my last comment, she actually said "my opinion and, i believe, the Mayor’s opinion". This more accurate. Kind of says to me she doesn't really know the Mayor's opinion.

The response then given to what she said makes an important point, but kind of lets her off the hook at the end...

"RISE ... was invented to express solidarity in the wake of particularly foul racist murders in London. And, as a result of that it was not surprising that particular organisations might wish to be identified with that. You are saying that people have move on since then?"

This is the real beef with what she has done. She essentially has failed to appreciate where RISE came from, and actually over-focussed on the politics of those who wish to make a stand, even though she actually appeared to be saying the opposite of that. You could argue of course: where were those of other political views then when it was important to make a stand against racism?

She has defeated her own argument i am afraid. I don't see anti-racism "evolving" (as she puts it) any time soon by sidelining the issue and hoping that racism will simply go away.

Trying to defeat racism by not talking about it? By not exposing racism in a direct way you only allow cultural racism to persist. Xenophobia is a natural human condition: only by making a strong stand against racism do we overcome the darkness within.

She should study history: particularly the economic and social conditions which brought about race-riots. What about the risk of a future possible downturn in the economic fortunes of London coupled with an increasing and diverse population vying for space?

I believe it is important to make a strong stand now and always. The organisers and participants of RISE believe that. This is their festival, their opportunity to communicate a strong anti-racist message to the rest of London. I cannot see how any right-minded individual in any community of London, could not respond positively to such a strong statement.

Assuming Boris and the GLA are willing to go along with Munira Mirza's lead, they should at least do the decent thing and give back RISE to the organisers. Even go further, and ask them to find their own finance and sponsorship next year. Even if the GLA withdrew all funding, that has got to be far better than diluting a the very important message that racism must be defeated.

Finally, she should go into the communities, into the deprived areas of London, and talk to the victims of racism, and the parents of those victims, and perhaps ask them what still needs to be done to tackle the problem of racism. If she were to do that, i believe she might change her mind about hijacking an important event such as RISE, and rolling out, what could turn out to be, just another badly thought out ideological experiment.

Naveen

Steve - your comment is deeply patronising - "..she should go into the communities, into the deprived areas of London, and talk to the victims of racism, and the parents of those victims, and perhaps ask them what still needs to be done to tackle the problem of racism. If she were to do that, i believe she might change her mind..." - I'm sure a Pakistani Muslim brought up in 1980s Oldham will be grateful to you for offering her lessons in the evils of racism.

You also display a bizarre, almost High Tory, view of human nature - "Xenophobia is a natural human condition: only by making a strong stand against racism do we overcome the darkness within"

Fortunately, Munira Mirza seems to have an altogether more optimistic understanding of our potential as human beings. Perhaps that's why she wants to rescue the politics of race from the dogmatists and intrumentalists of the far Left.

Good luck to her.

Steve Farr

Re above comment: When i wrote "organizers" i was actually thinking original organisers and supporters of the RISE event. The current organisers are of course the GLA. Stupid and sloppy of me.

Helen

Read this, Naveen? http://ummahpulse.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=410&ac=0

Steve Farr

@Naveen

In my earlier comment i used the word "peculiar" to describe her race ideology. Precisely because i just don't get how a "Pakistani Muslim brought up in 1980s Oldham" deals with racism by ignoring it. I am open minded on that score: can she explain how that works? I would be glad to hear about her personal experience on that matter. If not, well i guess she will just have to continue on with her own brand of dogmatism. Honestly, i've Googled everywhere, and that's all i've so far heard from her.

Patronising huh? I guess i'll just have to add that to list of dark stuff within. Honestly, i don't wish to be mean towards Munira. Crikey do i really sound so bad? I sincerely hope, in this apparent new era of shhhh-mustn't-talk-about-racism, that the victims of racism aren't ignored and forced to suffer in silence at the hands of a pervasive establishment ideology.

I am sorely tempted to go on and share some of my own very recent experience of racism. Another time maybe, at the risk of being labled "divisive", apparently.

Dave Rowntree

Hmmmm...a Pakistani Muslim growing up in 1980s Oldham and educated at Cheltenham Ladies College and Oxford University? I'm impressed by her achievements but you couldn't say that's part of a typical inner city Muslim teenager's educational experience, unfortunately...

Colin

Was Munira Mirza educated at Cheltenham Ladies College? She claims she went to a comprehensive school and a state sixth form college in Oldham. At least that's what it says on her CV.

Is she guilty of inventing a working class background to give her left wing cred? Someone should investigate.

The comments to this entry are closed.