01 September, 2013


Lee Rigby: a very belated RIP

The consistent focus of this blog since I started it by accident in 2005 has been immigration and race relations in the UK, leavened with the occasional feeble joke.

Not that I don't have equally unpalatable opinions about other "serious" issues, I hasten to add. Some of which may well surprise you if you've simply been extrapolating your political profile of me purely from my determinedly uncompromising attitude to the consequences of the ongoing and uninvited demographic unpheaval in this country. I'm not quite the monomaniacal "little Englander" obsessive you might imagine, striding purposefully about the living room in my bowler and my union-jack weskit, menacing imaginary cringeing darkies with my perfectly-furled brolly.

Anyway, the purposeful striding's off the menu at the moment — my damned knees have "gone" again.

But yes I regard immigration and race and the helter-skelter demographic upheaval that is going on in this country, as well as in the rest of "the West", as keystone issues. You want me to spare time to fret about the future of British education and its impact on Britain's economic prognosis, do you? Well, if those processes are set to take place within a cultural and genetic heritage wtih which I share as little as I do with Jared Diamond's beloved Papuan headhunters, then I'm afraid that's not a race I have a dog running in.

There you go.

And Woolwich is my manor; I'm not a native but I've lived in the area for the last 34 years, so I do have at least a basic familiarity with the place.

And finally, for what it's worth, the late Mr Rigby was a fellow Manc, raised as I understand it on the Manchester Corporation overspill estate at Langley, about two miles from where I grew up some 40 years earlier in Moston. There are Rigbys in my extended family as it goes. Who knows, Lee and I may even be distantly related? Well, in principle, maybe. In practice, it's not particularly likely. The surname Rigby is a common one in South Lancashire, deriving ultimately from the speech of the Norwegian Viking settlement of the Wirral in the tenth century. It is a non-specific geographical surname meaning little more than, 'im as lives at t'top o' th'hill, a byname which will doubtless have been repeatedly and independently awarded numerous times as the descendants of the Viking settlers spread out into the uplands of Central and East Lancashire.

So why then have I remained silent on this and every other matter for the past five months?

Simple fact is, I've been unwell. In a damned sight better state of health than young Lee has been since May, it needs to be said, but initially confined to quarters, subsequently lethargic and easily tired, and even now suffering a lingering general feeling of what I will presumptuously refer to as chronic secondary aproctosis*, which has frankly become a comfortable mental habit which I need to shake off. In short, while much of my time over the last few months has been devoted to developing a deep and passive familiarity with the delights of daytime television, I have still kept up with the news media and the blogosphere, but have not felt sufficiently motivated to put finger to keyboard. Indeed, my touch-typing was effectively trashed by loss of muscular co-ordination for a while, so basically it's been a chronic case of "WTF, innit".

Anyway, enough of that. Time to get my arse into gear and say something.

Despite my proximity to the action, there is, to be honest, relatively little I can add to what is already widely known about the Lee Rigby atrocity. On the afternoon of Wednesday 22 May, as it turned out, I made my way into beautiful downtown Woolwich for a change of scenery; it was the the first time I'd ventured quite so far from base in weeks. Unknown to me, some 500 yards away two madmen, secure in their solipsistic victimism, were cheerfully hacking a random off-duty British soldier to death and then standing round waiting for a round of applause. Other than a police patrol car putting on its blue lights and turning sideways-on to block entry from Woolwich New Road into Thomas Street for no immediately visible reason — a road traffic incident somewhere, I vaguely conjectured — there were no immediate signs of anything untoward, certainly nothing impacting the General Gordon Square area where I was at the time. The vibrant diversity that is Woolwich continued to vibrate at its accustomed languid frequency.

It was not until I got home and turned on the rolling news on telly that I learned what was going on. So no eyewitness reports of blood and gore or ancedotes about chatting amiably with the murderers from me, I'm afraid.

Actually, watching the news reports and the relentless helicopter footage of the crime scene was a curiously semi-detached experience, partly a function of my general grogginess, to be sure, but also because we seem to be getting inured to atrocities and bizarre goings on in general. There was no sense of proximate threat. Just, "Oh, another murderous atrocity in London, well ain't that just so damn-all vibrant? Hey, don't I recognize that pedestrian crossing?"

But then I don't really do arm waving and sobbing histrionics, to be honest. I guess I'm your dour North European type. Push me too far and I might well draw my broadsword from its trusty sheath and chop your impertinent fucking head off, but I won't make a big production number out of it.

One more observation from the epicentre and that's my lot in my self-appointed role as your Woolwich correspondent. I next visited downtown Woolwich on Saturday 25th, mainly on a resupply run to the emporium of Mr Sainsbury, my grocer. As is my custom, I called in to The Great Harry for a bottle of three of finest Russian lager. The Woolwich Wetherspoon is a rough but well run sort of boozer, which attracts a substantial sprinkling (about 5% of the clientele) of Nigerians. Before the 2011 fire they tended to congregate in one corner but since the rebuilt pub reopened they seemed to have integrated better, condescending to socialize with the natives. On that Saturday following the atrocity they seemed to be totally absent.

I mentioned this to one or two of the other regulars, who didn't seem to have noticed. There was no detectable animus against Nigerians as being responsible through some sort of collective guilt. In fact, despite the presence of the instashrine 400 yards up Wellington Street and the media circus, the matter was just not discussed. The Nigerians seem to have chosen to make themselves temporarily scarce, whether out of self-induced fear or out of respect I don't know. Other Black groups, like West Indians, milled about much as normal.

The single aspect of the Lee Rigby atrocity that sticks with me is the persistent attempts by the media and the establshment to spin it as our fault, by which I mean, of course, the fault of the native White population. The perps and their probable hangers-on having been speedily arrested, attention turned to the perceived danger of the aggrieved White population kicking off and carrying out a murderous pogrom on innocent Muslims at large. We sashayed seemlessly from condemnation and analysis of the two self-righteous murderous Black savages (you can't say that - Ed) to the need to protect innocent British Muslims from the inchoerent fury of White racists.

The useful idiot Fiyaz Mughal and his TellMAMA operation were recruited to support the assertion of a massive upswing in anti-Muslim sentiment. Unfortunately, as Gilligan made clear, most of the incidents were people mouthing off on Twitter and hijabi women imagining they were getting funny looks off people.

A series of "attacks" on mosques was breathlessly reported. Gone a bit quiet, that. Let's see, what do we know? there was some aggro from a Ukrainian nutter, some Danish chap waving his arms about, who turned out to be Somali "refugee" resident in Denmark, a couple of vaguely explosive doodahs discovered in alleys near mosques, and of course the unexplained burning down of a Somali club/mosque, which looks more and more like an opportunist insurance job. I may be wrong of course, I got bored with all this bollocks and gave up following it. But on the whole it looks less like a rampaging army of Angry White Fascists bearing flaming pitchforks and more like a lot of panicky wogs waving their arms about and applying their own dismally low standards of behviour and expectations of others to a culture they don't understand.

But anyway it's all over now. Lee Rigby has been buried. The perpetrators of this isolated and untypical "incident" await the formality of trial. And the Government has successfully protected innocent Muslims from the barely repressed rage of the British racists. Pity the racist wimps didn't actually kick off and kill people as we'd hoped feared, really, 'cos then we could have got stuck in with some really repressive legislation, innit?

* aproctosis.  Not a word you'll find in the medical dictionary, but actually a suprisingly common affliction.  The meaning is easily construed from its etymology

a- = lacking
proct(o)- = arse
-osis = disease

If I'd had the balls, I would quite like to have used it on the thankfully few self-certified sick notes I submitted during my working life.

Nice to see you back.

Sorry to hear you've been unwell. Hope you're well on the mend now.

Welcome back, Edwin.

Trust you are well down the road to recovery.The new, huge, Tesco's in the New Road clearly doesn't get the Dogwash seal of approval then!

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