David Lammy: like a puppet

Labour MP David Lammy has emerged as one of the most outspoken opponents of the nationalistic aspirations of Europeans, writes Christopher Goff.

A man with a chip on both shoulders is how one might describe the African MP for Tottenham, David Lammy. He's a man in the mould of his now-dead predecessor, the irascible Bernie Grant, also an African, and who was Labour MP for Tottenham until his death from a heart attack in 2000.

The grubby, crime-ridden area of Tottenham, in North London, can certainly produce them. Readers of a certain age might remember Bernie Grant saying in the aftermath of the 1985 Broadwater Farm riot in which PC Keith Blakelock was brutally hacked to death: "The youths around here believe the police were to blame for what happened on Sunday and what they got was a bloody good hiding". Comments which were swiftly denounced by the Labour Party leadership, while the then Conservative Home Secretary, Douglas Hurd, famously called Grant "the high priest of conflict".

Lammy grew up on the mean streets of Tottenham where events like the Broadwater Farm riot no doubt influenced his outlook on life. I am also reminded at this point of the murder of a National Front supporter, Albert Mariner, during a visit of his to Tottenham on 3 May, 1983.

Albert, an elderly gent from Plaistow, in East London, was a Second World War veteran and party stalwart who made up part of a fifty-strong contingent of NF supporters who, along with a number of police officers providing an escort, came under attack from a mob of mostly Africans as they were attending a party event held at a school in Tottenham in the run up to the general election of that year. Albert was struck on the head by a missile and was found dead at his flat the next morning by a group of comrades concerned for his well-being after the events of the previous evening. Only I venture the suggestion that the authorities covered up his murder presumably after factoring in the race relations issue, Tottenham being a tinder-box at this time. I think the official cause of death might have been 'heart failure', but I've always been of the opinion that being struck on the head by a lump of concrete played a not insignificant role in the stopping of Albert's heart. Who knows, perhaps it was this injustice that drove David Lammy towards a career in law and politics? But I somehow doubt it.

Tottenham was one of the most racially charged areas of the country in the 1980s. The Metropolitan Police at the time was overwhelmingly made up of Europeans and in consequence was deeply mistrusted and disliked by members of the African community. One assumes this low-level racial conflict – as I think it would be fair to describe the situation – must have impacted on a young David Lammy, as this situation must also have impacted on a great many young Africans living in that particular part of North London at that time.

More recently, David Lammy has emerged as one of the most outspoken opponents of the nationalistic aspirations of Europeans.

His drawing of comparisons between the pro-Brexit European Research Group and the Nazis earlier this year [2019] didn't go unnoticed. Speaking during an anti-Brexit demonstration in London's Parliament Square on 23 March, Lammy said: "I'm just looking over there at Winston Churchill. On the 30th of September 1938, he stood up in Parliament and he said we would not appease Hitler" and also, "I'm looking across to Nelson Mandela who would not give in to apartheid. We say we will not give in to the ERG. We will not appease. We will not appease". Note that statues of both Sir Winston Churchill and Nelson Mandela can be found in Parliament Square. You'll find them not far from the ones of Mahatma Ghandi and Joseph Stalin. Okay, there's not one of Stalin – but it's a wonder.

Hardly surprising, I know, that David Lammy should hold two of recent history's most reviled – by nationalists – figures in such high esteem. The former, Sir Winston Churchill, a warmonger who in collaboration with the communist mass-murderer Joseph Stalin brought about the defeat of National Socialism, and the latter, Nelson Mandela, an African terrorist whose coming to power consigned his country, the Republic of South Africa, to years of economic mismanagement and corruption. That Africans haven't since Mandela's death expurgated their continent of Europeans is surprising, but there's still plenty of time for that.

During a subsequent appearance of his on the BBC's The Andrew Marr Show, Lammy responded to the claim that his comparison between the ERG and the Nazi Party was 'unacceptable'.

An indignant David Lammy said: "I would say that wasn't strong enough. In 1938 there were allies who hatched a plan for Hitler to annex part of Czechoslovakia, and Churchill said no, and he stood alone. We must not appease. We're in a situation now, and let me just be clear, I'm an ethnic minority. We have, in the ERG, in Jacob Rees-Mogg, someone who is happy to put onto his web pages the horrible, racist AfD [Alternative for Germany] party, a party that's Islamophobic and on the far-right". And also, "They're happy to use the phrase 'grand wizard'. KKK is what it evokes to me when I think of that phrase and the Deep South. I'm sorry, but very, very seriously, of course we should not appease that, of course we should not appease that".

Andrew Marr retorted: "Jacob Rees-Mogg has been absolutely clear that he does not endorse the AfD and the Grand Wizard stuff, we don't know where that came from. It's a dangerous thing surely to accuse him of being close to Nazi ideology".

But Lammy continued his rant, saying: "We do know that Boris Johnson is with Steve Bannon, who is a white supremacist. We do know that there are links between Viktor Orbán, Salvini and others. I'm not backing off on this. Never will I back off on this on behalf of my constituents and the BBC should not allow this extreme hard-right fascism to flourish". Adding, "What kind of country are we going to be like if these people are running it"?

And Lammy has not been one to hold back on his criticism of US President Donald Trump. After the announcement by Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn of his decision not to attend a banquet to be held at Buckingham Palace during President Trump's state visit to the UK, scheduled for June, Lammy spoke out against what he called the "horrible white supremacy that he seems to stand for" and questioned why the "misogynist" had been granted the honour of a state visit when other US Presidents hadn't. Speaking on his LBC radio show after the announcement of Trump's visit, he also said: "If you care about climate change, if you care about the future of this world, then you must stand against Donald Trump".

He continued: "This is a man that is someone who thinks it's okay to describe women in the most horrendous of ways. To speak about them in a misogynistic and deeply offensive fashion. This is the Donald Trump that we are rolling out the red carpet for". Adding, "We don't always give a state visit to American presidents … Lyndon Johnson, Ford, Carter did not get one. So why, why is Theresa May putting Donald Trump in this position? Having him alongside the Queen"? On this last point of his, however, one assumes that Lyndon Johnson, Gerald Ford and Jimmy Carter had either little or no interest in carrying out a state visit to the UK, the world being a different place and the US more insular during those presidencies.

Noticeable is just how willing Lammy is during his public utterances to draw on the left's new lexicon of bogey words. If you resist mass migration and multiculturalism, you are in David Lammy's terminology a 'racist' or a 'xenophobe'. Resist feminism and you are to him a 'sexist' or a 'misogynist'. Resist the promotion of homosexuality and you are a 'homophobe'. Resist the Islamisation of Britain and you are an 'Islamophobe'. And if you oppose any of the things that David Lammy stands for, he will denounce you as a 'Nazi', a 'fascist' or a 'white supremacist'.

One has to question just how much thought Lammy actually puts into some of the things he says, or whether at times his brain is actually connected to his mouth. It is as if he's been programmed to say all the right things, only the proverbial microchip in his head fails on occasions to get the measure of certain situations. I am thinking here in particular of his 'white saviour' outburst which was said to have knocked £8m off donations to the Comic Relief charity.

Earlier this year [2019], Lammy criticised Comic Relief for its use of European celebrities as figureheads, amongst them the filmmaker Stacey Dooley and who subsequently appeared in a number of virtue-signalling pictures showing her involvement in some of the charity's work in Uganda. Lammy said of this: "My problem with British celebrities being flown out by Comic Relief to make these films is that it sends a distorted image of Africa which perpetuates an old idea from the colonial era". Adding, "The world does not need any more white saviours". Just the type of thing that Bernie Grant might have said of the situation were he still alive, do you not think?

David Lammy hasn't been short of well-placed friends in his life, as an article that appeared on The Jewish Chronicle website last year [2018] explained. Titled 'Lammy Tells Langdon of His Debt to Jewish Backers', it told of an address Lammy gave to wealthy supporters of the Jewish Langdon charity during a breakfast reception at London's Park Lane Hotel, and in which he spoke of the assistance he had received from Jewish financial backers.

Lammy told his audience how a number of Jewish lawyers had funded his £26,000 entry into Harvard Law School, saying Harvard had told him, "'You're going to be the first black Brit to come, we really want you to come, but it's going to cost you $40,000'". He added: "I didn't have the money and I'm very grateful to a group of Jewish lawyers who got together and got the money for me to go. That is why I am here".

David Lammy is someone who excels at smearing and demonizing his political opponents. His response to those Europeans daring to express nationalistic aspirations, including US President Donald Trump and Jacob Rees-Mogg, little more than attacks on the freedom of those people to hold certain views, and his words nothing but attempts at guilt by denunciation.

Copyright © Christopher Goff
Tag: Politics
Uploaded: 10 May, 2019.