Baroness Warsi looks far too young to be a baroness! She came across as rather sensible, all in all, continually pointing out that there are real reasons why people have been voting BNP. I was surprised to learn near the end of the programme that she has previously been in favour of Section 28 and against civil partnerships - she seemed too nice to be a homophobe. Interesting, that.
Jack Straw got about as much time as Nick Griffin did, as the representative of the Government there to answer his points. When he was speaking off the cuff he was quite amusing - for example, when Nick Griffin said he'd stopped being a Holocaust denier but couldn't explain why because of French & German law, he said "I can assure you as Justice Minister that it's not against the law in this country". When he had to reiterate Government policy, he seemed like a marionette with someone else pulling the strings. How can Government ministers constantly say there is no problem with border control when the Home Office keep losing important records?
Chris Huhne didn't get enough time to speak, really. He and Jack Straw talked about how we can't close the borders to immigration or impose a limit on the number of people who live in the country. He also pointed out that the Lib Dems are now running Burnley Council and helping to keep the BNP out by listening to voters. When he spoke, he was worth listening to; but the rest of the time he sat there all grey. Richard said if Spitting Image was still running, they could recycle the John Major puppet for Chris Huhne!
Bonnie Greer is awesome. She didn't say much, but what she did say was witty, acerbic and straight to the point. She deserves some credit for sitting next to Nick Griffin! He even applauded some of the things she said. I loved her inviting him to come to the British Museum and learn some history!
What point there is in texting my views on the programme to some number when it's prerecorded?
WTF was David Dimbleby's tie about? BRIGHT green with ANCHORS and PINK FLOWERS (dahlias?) on it? Every time they showed that tie it hurt my eyes.
The "Wisdom" of Nick Griffin
"Indigenous British" people are descended from the people who were here 17,000 years ago."Skin colour is irrelevant". Nick Griffin apparently has no freaking idea of the history of this country. Being an island, we've been invaded a ridiculously large number of times - Romans, Saxons, Vikings, Normans, just in the past couple of thousand years. Our blood is so co-mingled that, even were records available, I'm not sure anyone could trace themselves back that far.
I'm pleased to know that if the BNP suddenly got into power, Nick Griffin would permit me and all the other non-white people to stay in this country. I wonder if the rest of his party agree with him on that, though? Pretty sure a lot of BNP members think that brown people should be sent back to where they came from, which is a problem if you come from here. Maybe they'd have some sort of "Britishness" test.
Nick Griffin thinks that the BBC is "ultra left-wing". This would be the same BBC that is officially impartial and allowed him, as an ultra right-wing politician onto the programme in the face of Cabinet criticism and serious protests? Riiiight.
I'm glad the programme wasn't 100% everyone pile on Nick Griffin, let's see what an idiot he is. Apparently he went to Cambridge, so he must have a brain in there somewhere. I find many of his views repugnant, but it's worth noting how he's managed to drag the BNP from being an extreme racist party with a handful of jackbooted supporters into something that ordinary people are prepared to vote for.
An audience member asked the various panelists about Jan Moir's hateful Stephen Gately article in the Daily Mail. The four panelists who were not in the BNP gave essentially identical answers in favour of free speech (unsurprising considering they were willing to appear on TV alongside the BNP), but suggesting that a person/newspaper should consider whether their opinion is in good taste. Nick Griffin however came out with some wonders:
"I'm against the teaching of homosexuality to primary school children. I'm against the teaching of any kind of sexuality in primary school, I think it's wrong." I started my periods in primary school - was I supposed to think I was bleeding to death?
"Most British people find two men kissing creepy." It's the view of most of Britain, along with all the Muslims and all the Christians. Erm... for someone who is anti-Islam because you think it treats women as second-class citizens, why are you now acting like you're all on the same side? Also, most Christians in this country are not actively against homosexuality.
"Homophobic prejudice - I don't think there's any place in a civilised society for it" - go, Chris Huhne!
I'm going to write some stuff about me sometime. Not sure when.