“Laurence Fox for the Mayor of London would violate all values ​​of that city” – Rachael Davis

If you haven’t seen the news that Laurence Fox announced he was running for Mayor of London, I’m sorry to be the one to tell you.

And if you’re lucky enough not to even know who Laurence Fox is, I have to explain it even sadder.

Fox may be known to some from his acting career, where he appeared in a number of war films and television dramas in the early 2000s, and starred in the ITV detective drama Lewis, which became the station’s top-rated drama in 2006.

Others may know him as the ex-husband of actress Billie Piper, whom he married in 2007 and whom he divorced in 2016.

Many have only met him in the past 18 months, when he crawled out of the woods with aggressive political views, an unfounded sense of pretension, and some rather obnoxious, misguided comments on race, gender, and more.

Self-inflicted awareness

Fox’s unfounded and misinformed commentary on race and racism mainly began in January 2020 when it drew media attention for saying that the 1917 film’s depictions of Sikh soldiers who fought in World War I, ” false diversity “were, although Sikh soldiers really fought on the Western Front in World War I.

It snowed from there and Fox claimed he was a victim of racism at Question Time when he was referred to as a “white privileged man” by a member of the audience – which shows an obvious ignorance of what racism actually is.

In the summer of 2020, he was widely criticized for using the counter slogan “All Lives Matter” to the Black Lives Matter movement, a counter slogan that is used to erase the experience of black people.

To clarify this last point, Dr. Ali Meghji, Cambridge University Social Inequality Researcher, told CambridgeshireLive, June 2020: “When you say Black Lives Matter, you are not saying that other lives don’t matter to the way black people around the world are denied certain human rights because they’re black. ”

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Fox also attacked Sainsbury’s for creating safe rooms for black employees, claiming that they “support racial segregation and discrimination” and when the legitimate backlash against his comments made him feel he was “falsely smeared as a racist” he said named two authors of tweets who argued against him “pedophiles”.

Those writers were RuPaul’s Drag Race UK’s Crystal and Simon Blake, vice chairman of LGBT charity Stonewall. They both happen to be gay men – which certainly wasn’t a coincidence with Fox’s comments, as gay men have been accused of pedophilia for decades because of their sexual orientation.

They announced that they would sue him for defamation.

Given these facts about Fox’s activities over the past year, which have been presented with virtually no comment (so far), I think it is clear why his candidacy for mayor makes little sense in such an inclusive and diverse city as London.

Fox has come under fire after saying on BBC Question Time last year that he was a victim of racism

“Freedom of Speech” and “Anti-Woke”

As Londoners, we pride ourselves on accepting everyone, regardless of skin color, gender, sexual orientation, religion, background or any other factor that makes us who we are.

Sure, not everyone in this city of nearly nine million people thinks that way, but I like to think that these are values ​​in general that we hold as a city.

Fox, on the other hand, seems to disagree with these values.

As a precursor to his mayoral bid, Fox’s new political party, Reclaim, was approved by the electoral commission last month.

The so-called “Anti-Woke” party fights against “extreme political correctness,” and Fox himself has claimed that wakefulness is “anti-British” and “national-hating”: “I’m in direct opposition to that. And I’ll be for the rest my days, ”he told the podcast“ Chopping Politics ”.

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As used herein, the definition of “woke up” is generally viewed as “vigilant about injustices in society, particularly racism”.

Even so, some people think that wakefulness is a direct obstacle to their freedom of speech (translation: freedom to speak offensive nonsense without challenge or criticism).

It should go without saying that freedom of speech – which we have in this country – does not mean freedom to speak without retaliation.

For example, Fox demonstrated just today, on International Women’s Day, that he is free to tweet an overtly transphobic response to Sadiq Khan’s acknowledgment that trans women are women.

Other people are also free to comment, criticize, and expose his claim, as that is freedom of speech.

As part of his campaign for the Mayor of London, Fox aims to “offer a voice to those who are silenced”.

You will be forgiven to think that it means giving a voice to minority groups that for centuries have been “silenced” by institutions that exist only to suppress them but based on its track record – see comments on Trans- People and races already discussed – it is clear that he doesn’t.

Writing in the Telegraph on Saturday March 6th, Fox reflects on his decision to run for Mayor of London, reflecting on how he sees “mild patriotism being branded as racism”.

“As a small child I always thought Britain was brilliant at everything,” he writes, before criticizing the demolition of statues by slave owners (for example, Edward Colston in Bristol), saying, “Sadiq Khan and his nationalist cronies have their jealous ones Eyes on our statues and institutions. “

The call for the demolition of Winston Churchill’s statue in Parliament Square was illustrated by graffiti

“Where does his wish to withdraw our history from us ends?” he asks – but my opposite pole would be: “Where does the desire to unnecessarily celebrate racists, slave owners and misogynists end?”

Just because someone did something important with the money they received from owning slaves doesn’t mean blacks need to walk past these statues in 2021 and be reminded of what the British did to their ancestors for centuries.

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It should also go without saying that history is not taught through statues – you cannot learn anything from a piece of stone or bronze.

However, you can learn something from a plaque on the site of a statue that explains what the person contributed to the story and why their statue was taken away when this is at odds with the modern values ​​we seek to uphold in our city. But that’s a whole different debate.

What do you think of Laurence Fox, who is running for Mayor of London? Share your thoughts in the comments here.

“I want the ban to be lifted immediately.”

Even the principle by which Fox is running its mayoral campaign offends what Londoners have been looking at over the past year: a truly terrible pandemic.

He has made proposals to lift the lockdown “immediately,” claiming that Covid restrictions are no longer required since vaccinating the most vulnerable in society.

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He told the telegraph, “Since almost all elderly and vulnerable people have received their bump, I want the lock to be lifted immediately.

“The government has said vaccines are working, hospitalizations and deaths are falling, but we are still being told that we can’t get back to normal until midsummer at the earliest.

“Both main parties are fighting in this bleak race to be the last to liberate the country. Both Tory and Labor have found it hard to get it wrong.

“I want London – and indeed the rest of the country – to get back to work and play right away – not until the end of June.”

This obviously contradicts what leading scientists, epidemiologists and doctors have been saying during this pandemic: The relaxation of restrictions cannot be hastened or we risk more disease, more deaths and more unbearable lockdowns.

We all want our London back, but I definitely want it back for good and for good.

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Build a better London

Regardless of your political leanings, if only because of Fox’s campaigning lockdown comments alone, it’s clear that he doesn’t fit this town well.

Yes, London’s economy and elixir of life are being torn down by lockdowns, but they are necessary. They will continue to be necessary until we have this virus under control, and with continued support for the rules and the trust in the science behind them, they will not be needed much longer.

I want to live in a city where everyone can feel safe, loved, wanted and free, and I don’t think this is the London that Laurence Fox would rule.

The pandemic would strike again, marginalized voices would be silenced again, and bigotry, hatred and deception would prevail.

This is not the London I want so I will definitely not vote for Fox.

London Herald