ALL those times I watched DS James Hathaway in the drama series Lewis, it never crossed my mind that this unassuming young actor would become the politician that I am pinning my hopes on today.
The BBC must regret the platform they gave him on their political debate programme Question Time in January last year. Instead of the predictable virtue signalling we have come to expect from his woke ‘celeb’ peers, Fox put it on the line: Meghan Markle was not a victim of racism. Taunted by an audience member calling him a ‘white privileged male’, he turned the tables and said the heckler was the racist.
Overnight he became the Left’s new target. He’d been ‘far right’ radicalised, according the New Statesman. The actors’ union Equity called him a disgrace. Fox learnt about political intolerance at first hand and decided it had to be fought head-on.
Last September he launched a political party to do just this, Reclaim. He said: ‘Our politicians have lost touch with the people they represent and govern . . . The people of the United Kingdom are tired of being told that we represent the very thing we have in history stood together against.’
He’s been an ardent and explicit opponent of lockdown over this last year. More than simply criticising the government, where others opted for a quiet life (however much they knew the rules were sheer nonsense) he’s openly encouraged people to disobey social distancing rules and pointless public health diktats.
Last month Fox announced he would be standing against Sadiq Khan in the forthcoming London mayoral elections in order to ‘fight against extreme political correctness’ and pledging to ‘end the Met’s obsession with diversity and inclusivity’.
For TCW readers this might sound an obvious course of action, but the simple fact is no other politician has ever dared to promise it. No politician has been brave enough to challenge woke orthodoxy and take the punishment that this incurs. Fox won’t let smearing or bullying that has silenced others, cow him.
In a Zoom call with me on Tuesday he revealed a modesty, naturalness and good humour as delightful as it was unexpected. I have met many politicians, but none like him. He is, as the French say, ‘bien dans sa peau’. Unusually for an actor he has no conceit. And he says he is in it for the duration and understands the stamina that will take.
Specifically he’s promised if he becomes mayor to bring ‘broken windows’ policing to London, modelled on the successful 1990s initiative in New York.
This asserts that failing to curb petty crime such as vandalism encourages more petty crime. The broken windows strategy, says Fox, is policing ‘from the bottom up in a human way to create confidence in the public and then that emanates up to higher levels of crime.’ His ‘crackdown on crime’ is more than words. It would see more stop and search – a highly divisive policy among London’s black community – and ‘zero tolerance’ to knife crime. He would also encourage ‘escape routes for those willing to reform and rehabilitate’.
I am not surprised that a recent poll revealed that 62 per cent of Londoners think that Sadiq Khan has been too soft on tackling crime in London, and 44 per cent are dissatisfied with the level of visible police presence where they live.
Fox said: ‘The Mayor has failed the basic test of keeping London safe. In the name of his political correctness, children are dying on our streets and hospitals are filling up with the stabbed and shot.’
Who can argue with that?
If you are still wondering why Laurence Fox is the Conservative Woman’s choice to be London mayor, here is an extract from his campaign launch speech, that he defiantly delivered under the statue of Britain’s top twentieth century politician and leader, Sir Winston Churchill.
‘A year ago we lent our government our liberty for three short weeks to flattten the curve and now, a year on, they refuse to give back what never belonged to them in the first place.
‘There is no reason why we are being kept in lockdown. We have been manipulated, frightened and outright lied to by a government who instead of trusting us to get on with our lives are now flirting with even more authoritarian ideas. We demand our lives back.’
· London will be a covid passport free city.
· There will be no mask mandate in London.
· Children will not have to wear masks in schools.
· Free public transport for six months – a helping hand to get you back to work and play and a helping hand for the small cafes and coffee shops where I hope you invest the money you have saved.
· No woman will have to share a private bathroom or changing space with a man. There will be three walls and a door between you and any man in London.
· Every year there will be a festival of London, where every theatre ticket is free. We need to get the life blood of tourism flowing back into London.
· A Union Jack will fly outside every school in London. Children will be taught about the good that Britain has done in the past as well as the bad.
· Any institutions which seek to undermine our culture via critical social justice and critical race theory will lose their funding in London. Our culture is a reflection of us all and must be protected will all our collective energy.
· I will build 250,000 houses over four years. A full audit of the green belt will take place, with Constable’s canvas preserved for eternity and unattractive scrubland transformed into beautiful and affordable housing.
· It’s your London. It’s your freedom. Reclaim it.
It is hard to fault.