Laura Kuenssberg sparks outrage describing Tory racism as on a “different political scale”

Laura Kuenssberg and Baroness Sayeeda Warsi
Joshua Funnell

It appears that the BBC’s political editor, Laura Kuenssberg, has finally been embarrassed into highlighting racism in the Conservative Party.

But her tweet hints at BBC bias against Labour and the media’s double standards on racism. And the push back online has been fierce.

Why is the BBC ignoring Conservative Party racism, Laura?

In light of the relentless media focus on alleged antisemitism in the Labour Party, online activists are questioning news values. And people are rightly asking: why do the media ignore evidence of the Tories’ obvious racism while obsessing over Labour’s?

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Patron of Stop the War Coalition, Salma Yaqoob, spoke of incidents related to institutional racism:

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“On different political scale” – you can’t be serious?

Kuenssberg has now finally addressed Conservative racism. But what she’s tweeted is beyond belief. Raising the long-term complaints of former Conservative minister, Baroness Warsi, Kuenssberg tweeted:

And people are now rightly asking: what does on a, “different political scale” actually mean?

Editor-in-chief of Ceasefire Magazine, Hicham Yezza, also asked:

A hierarchy of racism?

Novara Media’s Ash Sarkar spoke for many who felt Kuenssberg’s tweet could be interpreted to support a hierarchy of racism:

One Twitter user also suggested that Kuenssberg’s choice of language belittled the problem:

Another hit the nail on the head, as the Conservatives are actually in power and require more scrutiny:

Conservative racism ‘On a different political scale’ because of media choices?

A number of other critics argued that Conservative racism is on a different political scale because the media Kuenssberg is part of simply choose not to focus on it:

And as another user put it:

The double standard needs to end

As The Canary reported elsewhere on 28 February, Andrew Neil recently raised Islamophobia with a Conservative MP. On BBC Politics Live Neil said:

because of the row over antisemitism you’ve got away with this.

And remarking on Neil’s comment, the author remarked:

Neil’s comments accidentally shed light on the hypocrisy of the media and its failure to adopt a balanced approach to the two issues. People rightly question why the media obsesses over Labour antisemitism, yet ignores Tory Islamophobia. Why is one a two-year long scandal and the other a forgotten footnote?

The media’s focus on antisemitism isn’t inevitable, it’s a choice. And so Neil should more accurately have said to Smith of Islamophobia: ‘because we the media have no interest in holding the Conservative Party to the same standards over racism as Labour, we have let you get away with it’.

Kuenssberg’s latest tweet reaffirms the above perfectly.

Time to address a serious problem

As a report by HOPE not hate, states:

Islamophobia is creeping through the heart of the tory party – and the lack of action is worrying

Until journalists like Kuenssberg stop treating Conservative Party racism as on a different political scale, the problem will not be addressed. This means British Muslims will suffer. And in the meantime, one political party will have its reputation smashed while another goes scot-free.

Featured image via YouTube – BBC News and YouTube – Channel 4 News

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    1. Antisemitism ought to be a racism like any other racism. Except, it would appear, antisemitism is a different kind of racism. A very special racism. A racism that is regarded more heinous than other racisms. A complicated racism with nuances of meaning woven into it whether with codicils of purposeful design or inadvertently layered with over-enthusiastic wordiness into a structure of definitions necessarily requires more thought, understanding and learning than other ‘simpler racisms’, which simpler racisms not so encumbered as far as one understands with specific and officially defined tracts of relevance, are easier to understand. ‘Lesser racisms’ are diminished in importance than a nuanced understanding of the intricacies surrounding the very complicated specialised nature of ‘antisemitic racism’. I’m saying here that antisemitism is an outsider racism that needs to be brought back into the fold of reviling straightforwardly any hateful racism from where’er it is written, uttered or thought.

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