Monday, 9 April 2012

Calling Your Name

Of course, one of Labour's defences over mounting evidence of their use of "dog whistle" tactics is that they are using common phraseology that they apply to all their candidates.

So compare and contrast, if that truly was the case, in what should be very similar leaflets, their candidate calling cards...

Church Ward

Battle Ward

One of them is about a candidate who lives on the other side of town from the ward they seek to represent, who has no track record in that ward and who is standing against an Asian candidate who does live in the ward and is far more entitled to use that phrase in its neutral form. It is why using "one of us" was so incongruous and stood out like a sore thumb.

The other Labour calling card is for an Asian candidate who actually lives in the ward and therefore its use would be perfectly natural and corroboration that people are whipping up a storm in a tea-cup. Except it is notable by its complete absence.

In fact Labour have also used it on the leaflets of another white candidate where they are targeting a council estate. Expect a panic use of the phrase on a rushed out leaflet to support their Battle candidate in a belated attempt to diffuse the situation and sweep it off the election agenda.

Now no-one is accusing Labour themselves of being either racist or homophobic. I'm also sure that we'll get the "but we have Asian and gay candidates" line parroted by their supporters. But this isn't about credentials, it is about a willingness to pander to prejudice. That has been demonstrated by their actions last year and their actions this year certainly on the balance of probabilities if not also beyond reasonable doubt.

For Labour, the end really does justify the means.

But it's too late. You've been caught. It is despicable.

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