Tuesday, April 16, 2024
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How Hope Not Hate lost their way


DURING my childhood in South Africa the Apartheid government made sure that we were all aware of the dangers of ‘Reds under the bed’ – a warning that communists were massed at the border, ready to invade. Although the USSR were warmongering in Africa at that time, the menace they posed to South Africa was minimal. I see similar hyperbole coming from Hope Not Hate (HNH) and their campaign against the far Right.

With over 80,000 followers on Twitter and held up as a paragon of virtue by the metropolitan elite, HNH need no introduction. They certainly do great work when it comes to curbing the real far Right such as neo-Nazis. HNH have exposed Nick Griffin for the racist anti-Semite he is. Their work is flawless when it comes to identifying the destructive influences of far Right and anti-Semitic conspiracy theorists such as Alex Jones.

Admirably, they even helped foil a far Right plot to murder MPs. The far Right are nobody’s friend but their own and are indeed a threat not only to minorities but to the entire country.

But now, like a good TV series gone bad, HNH have jumped the shark. The far Right are a tiny minority in comparison with the danger posed by Islamists. Only 13 per cent of those imprisoned for terror offences identify as far Right ideologues compared with the 80 per cent who claim allegiance to Islamic extremism.

The far Right are not posing as much of a threat as they did previously. In response, HNH have distended their definition of far Right to justify their existence. By doing so, they have fallen victim to the Leftie groupthink that anyone to the right of Jeremy Corbyn is far Right. And that includes smearing 17.4million Britons as far Right because they voted for Brexit.

HNH imply that Brexiteers are guilty of perpetrating ‘hate’, a word as ubiquitous and enfeebled as ‘racism’ is. This preposterous assumption is polarising and obtuse. Their depiction of the recent Leave Means Leave rally is an exercise in hyperbole and shows what happens when good people lose their way in the fight against true racism. HNH contribute to the false narrative that all Brexiteers are racists. In an act of astounding hubris, HNH decry racism and hate yet are guilty of similar bigotry with their sneering description of Brexiteers and by associating them with the far Right.

Surely the extremists are those who wish to overturn the results of a democratic vote and cleave to the teat of the EU, not those who voted for Brexit. That HNH align themselves with those who worship an economic agreement instead of preferring sovereignty for their own country shows they are unable to understand this.

They also seem obsessed with UKIP, classifying the party as far Right. Although I am not a fan of UKIP, or of any political party, I can certainly see that this is ridiculous. UKIP champions democracy as a vital component of society – a belief not held by the far Right and far Left who both prefer their own forms of totalitarian rule. 

Labour is far more a threat to the security of this country than UKIP will ever be. But, blinded by the bogeyman of the far Right, HNH prefer to ignore reality and are mustering a campaign to oppose UKIP, Nigel Farage and Arron Banks in the upcoming local elections, conflating them incorrectly with the far Right. By doing so HNH show themselves to be lacking in any political nuance and understanding, and frankly to be somewhat unhinged. This undermines the good work they have done in combating the real far Right.

HNH have sadly morphed into an adult form of a social justice warrior, tweeting irate nonsense from a basement somewhere. Their stance on protection of homosexuals is admirable but their promotion of transgender propaganda is not. Surely we can protest against the anti-science dogma of transgenderism without being afraid that we will be reported for ‘hate crime/speech’ via the Orwellian True Vision police website – designed to make reporting of ‘hate crime/speech’ as easy as possible for even the laziest activist. And we must be able to object to Stonewall teaching primary school children transgender ideology without being vilified as far Right. 

HNH’s latest clumsy attempt to show their virtue-signalling credentials has been to climb aboard the censorship soapbox.

They give undeserved validity to a little-known organisation called Stop Funding Fake News, which hypocritically seeks to cripple financially, and therefore close down, mainly conservative media. Advocating the banning of free speech in the name of fighting hate and racism is another sign that HNH have lost their way and are exhibiting similar fascist tendencies found in far Right ideologues.

Despite promoting themselves as an organisation founded to fight hate, they do a feeble job when it comes to admonishing Labour for their endemic anti-Semitism. Just like Shami Chakrabarti in her report, HNH whitewash the issue. They absurdly claim that most in Labour are not anti-Semites. I beg to differ, given that each week there is a new anti-Semite in Labour causing havoc and the Palestinian flag – a symbol of the destruction of Israel – was flown by the Labour leadership at their conference. In a paltry act of damage-control Momentum created a video which promoted a boycott of Israel instead of admitting their culpability in anti-Semitism – a fact ignored by HNH in their eagerness to award Momentum some brownie points. 

It is not UKIP but Labour that many Jews fear. That Matthew McGregor, HNH’s Campaign Director, also saw fit to discuss moral issues like anti-Semitism with a thug such as Clive Lewis shows they have questionable judgment. 

HNH ignore the menace of Left-wing hatred and alienate those who would be on their side if only they weren’t smeared as Right-wing racists. That HNH are lauded by so many, including the metropolitan elite, is worrying. Who will guard these self-appointed guardians?

Tomorrow I will be writing about HNH’s naive embrace of Islamism.

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Karen Harradine
Karen Harradine
Karen is an anthropologist and freelance journalist. She writes on anti-Semitism, Israel and spirituality. She is @KarenH777on Twitter.

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