Friday, 23 April 2010
KATHY CONDEMNS BNP IN JOINT STATEMENT WITH GREENS & TRADES UNIONS
Labour candidate Kathy Pearce has signed up to a mutual declaration of NO PLATFORM FOR THE BNP with Green candidate Charlie Graham through the auspices of Bridgwater Trades Union Council and Bridgwater Hope Not Hate. This follows the disgraceful Election Hustings at the Holy Trinity Church in Hamp, Bridgwater, organised by the 'Mothers Union'which invited the BNP. Their candidate Donna Treanor (who lives in Croydon) turned up and shared the platform with UKIP (whose views weren't far off their own) and the opportunistic Lib Dem candidate Theo Butt Phillip (from Wells). Tory canddiate Ian Liddell-Grainger (who hasn;t turned up to any public meetings so far) put the cat amongst the pidgeons by saying in the West Somerset Free Press that the BNP had to be invited or it wasn't 'democratic' (He also didn;t turn up anyway).
Charlie Graham -the Green candidate - walked out of the meeting - which had to have 2policemen stationed on the door.
Kathy - who had sent her apologies to the meeting anyway before she even knew if the BNP had been invited said "I'm not prepared to share a platform with any party that would deny the right of democracy to a section of the constituency. I was not at the meeting but I would have walked out too, partly because the media interest the BNP generate overrides any other issue. She turns up to one meeting and everybody's interested in it!"
The 2 progressive candidates put out a joint statement through HOPE NOT HATE and backed by the Bridgwater Trades Unions Council.
BRIDGWATER AGAINST THE BNP - HOPE NOT HATE
PRESS STATEMENT, 22nd April 2010
We, the undersigned were disappointed by the decision by the Mothers’ Union at Hamp Church, Bridgwater to invite the BNP’s prospective parliamentary candidate to address its meeting on Wednesday 21st April.
This is the first recorded meeting in Bridgwater’s proud history to have been addressed by a member of a fascist group. That this should have been organized by a local church group is deeply disturbing.
The BNP is a fascist party, similar to Hitler’s Nazis, and its aims are to sow division through racial hatred. Its leaders believe in white supremacy and authoritarian government. To allow them a platform to express such dangerous, twisted and abhorrent views is to grant them the same status and legitimacy as candidates from normal democratic parties. It is also an insult to many who fought fascism in Europe in the 30s and 40s.
There is no legal obligation for an organization to invite a candidate to speak whose views they find to be dangerous and morally repugnant.
We applaud other groups in the constituency who have organized election meetings, such as the Bridgwater Senior Citizens Forum and Minehead Christians Together for taking the principled decision not to invite the BNP candidate.
We call upon all other organizations and candidates in the Bridgwater & West Somerset constituency to refuse to offer or share a platform with fascists.
KATHY PEARCE ( LABOUR PARTY & HOPE NOT HATE)
CHARLES GRAHAM ( GREEN PARTY & HOPE NOT HATE)
DAVE CHAPPLE(BRIDGWATER TUC & HOPE NOT HATE)