I saw the newspaper headlines for the day this evening. The vast majority criticised the BNP's Nick Griffin - as well they might. A video of Griffin was referred to during the proceedings last night. I've already posted it on 21stCenturyFix.org - but it deserves to be posted on as many sites as possible. Here it is again, if you missed it.
Its relevance lies not in whether Griffin said this or that - or, in fact, meant this or that - but rather in it so clearly uncovering the naked cynicism and ambition that underpins the whole BNP project from the start.
I have supported the "Hope Not Hate" campaign gladly. But never have I seen Griffin speak up close. Yesterday's "Question Time" gave me that opportunity. Afterwards, I felt sullied. I felt dirty. I felt ashamed.
In fact, I felt raped - both physically and intellectually.
If politicians have given politicians a bad name, so be it. But Griffin is not a simple politician. Griffin is dangerous because he is a man with a mission. And that mission is a single-minded desire to convince people he is right - to the veritable exclusion of everyone else. Where history, considered opinion, science or the finer arts get in the way, then he is always prepared with a ready excuse.
Those - on the left or the right of the political spectrum - who brook no interference from fact or evidence, who have formed their opinions so tightly that any new uncertainty becomes quickly subsumed in an existing superstructure of theory ... well, it is those people who are our real enemies as we attempt to construct cohesive communities.
It is those people we must worry about as we try to weave the threads of hope.