BNP: Not On My High Street

The British National Party (BNP) were out in voice on my local high street on Saturday, and I was surprised to see them in my middle class white neighbourhood. This is the second time in a month that I have been exposed to far right demonstrations. A fortnight ago the English Defence League marched in Leicester where there were some frightening sights and fearful tensions brewing.

I was extremely unnerved by the tattooed shaven head men who were handing out leaflets, by the cars driving up and down with tannoy messages, and by those swearing loudly as they spoke to each other and anyone who got in their way. There was very little police presence and for the first time in my area of West London, I felt vulnerable.

I am aware of the rise across Europe of extreme right wing nationalism lacking faith in their own and EU governments during these times of recession and being bred on the fear of increasing immigration and dare I say it, Islamaphobia. But I have never really been exposed to it on my doorstep in any of the areas I have lived.

For many years, extreme right wing groups were not really on the surface. This prominence makes me wonder whether the current economic and social climate has influenced them to venture into previously untapped areas and whether my neighbours will start signing up to these parties. It may sound very rudimentary but this is how expansion starts, doesn’t it.



One Comment to “BNP: Not On My High Street”

  1. It does sound intimidating. In other European countries the uglier side of the political spectum is also showing its head. Ethnic minorities are always the target of ignorant people and attitudes. In the UK it is Muslims and anyone brown and in Greece it’s the Albanians, in France and Austria the target is Turkish people and so the list goes on.

    Interesting that the police turn up in number for ‘green’ protests and ones against the City of London but not for BNP marches.

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