Monday, August 15, 2011

Cometh The Hour, Cometh The Man

I've been a fan of the educationist Tony Sewell for quite a long time - ever since he whupped Lee Jasper* in a Guardian education debate back in 2003. He's that rare thing, a black activist who believes that not every problem in the community is caused by racist whitey - that maybe, inter alia, black street and rap culture has a teensy influence on the youth, too - a bit of a UK John McWhorter, in fact.

I was pleased to hear him on R5 this morning, dismissing David Starkey's discussion of Great Enoch as irrelevant but focusing on, and agreeing with, Starkey's claim that white urban youth are taking up (as best they may) the black gangsta culture which has left so many dead on London's streets.

He's in the Mail, too :

"Despite the attempts of some apologists to dress up the looting as a political act against an oppressive Tory establishment, the fact is that the ethos of materialism — or ‘bling’ to use the street term — that pervades urban black youth played a major part in the widespread criminality perpetrated by rioters of all races.

That is why the looters targeted specific stores that are cherished in this culture, such as those selling mobile phones, trainers, sports clothes or widescreen TVs. Let’s face it, there were no reports of the vandals looting bookshops or public libraries.

What motivated the troublemakers was not genuine poverty but rather a raw acquisitiveness that is fuelled by so much in this black-led youth culture, from the imagery in rap videos to the lyrics of hip-hop music. The twin central themes of this world are sex and material possessions... young white and Asian, often middle-class, Britons — anxious for a bit of street cred — adopted the language and clothes of the culture, as Sacha Baron Cohen so mercilessly parodied in his comic creation Ali G, a white teenager from Staines who is desperate to be seen as black. And here, I think, we are getting at what David Starkey wanted to convey.

So prevalent is this ‘gangsta’ culture that, if you get on a bus in London and shut your eyes, you will often not be able to tell the ethnicity of the young people who are speaking, since they all use the tone, phraseology and language patterns of black youths."

Though like everyone else, he gets Starkey base-over-apex about Enoch. What Starkey said was that Enoch was wrong, in that the rivers of blood aren't one race fighting another, but :

"Black and white, unite and loot,
Smash the phone-shop front !"

* Jasper is, according to the now defunct BlacksandJews site "a Jewish-Zionist agent working in the Black Community, a man without honour, morals or common decency". I can't answer for the first part, but as for the second, even a stopped clock ...


Sgt Troy 11th Dragoons said...

You did not see what you saw

Historic pub enriched

Foxy Brown said...

Interesting that Acting White , the rather pernicious accusation hurled at any person of colour - usually black - who aspires to improve himself either economically, educationally or culturally, has not figured in the discussion.

Laban said...

Not the Barton Arms ? The place with the great Victorian glass and mirrors ? Bar stewards!

I once spent an evening there with a couple of somewhat rough chaps, one of whom urinated in the corner because he couldn't be bothered to walk to the toilets. They explained to me their plans for afters - a former girlfriend was coming over, and they both intended to enjoy her.

Autre temps, autres moeurs ...

Sgt Troy 11th Dragoons said...

"Laban said...
Not the Barton Arms ? The place with the great Victorian glass and mirrors ? Bar stewards!"

Despite great efforts by the breweRy and the council I very much doubt this gem is going to be sustainable.

Lozells/Newtown is simply horrific

Sgt Troy 11th Dragoons said...

Horrific as in gangstas meet Neolithic cattle herders on benefits