Posts Tagged ‘Sarah Champion’

Mark Pattie Debunks the Myth that Labour Councils Have a Problem with Pakistani Grooming Gangs

July 20, 2022

As I’ve mentioned in previous articles about this, the Tories are trying to spin the continuing scandal over the Pakistani grooming gangs as a uniquely Labour problem. The gangs were allowed to get away for decades with the horrendous crimes by Labour councils and local police forces, who were afraid that if they acted, with they would be charged with racism. But the Labour MPs Sarah Champion, Simon Danczuk stood against them, as did Rochdale Muslim councillor, Amina Lone. Mark Pattie, one of the commenters here, posted this remark also debunking this idea of a unique culpability by Labour and the Pakistani community overall:

‘Thanks for the mention. I kind of wonder whether her courage helped her keep her seat Labour, otherwise Rotherham would’ve gone Con in 2019? As for the “Labour councils…” smear, that can be easily debunked. Not all Labour councils with significant Pakistani-origin populations have problems with these gangs- I’ve never heard of any operating in Preston, Ashton-under-Lyne or Bolton (which I think is now Con anyway) for instance. Plus Telford has been Tory for a good few years I think now.’

Oh dear! Who would have thought of grooming gangs operating in a Tory-run town! Well, not Mahyar Tousi, a very right-wing Brexiteer YouTuber, who posted a video attacking Jess Phillips for Labour’s supposed silence over the grooming gangs. It was a tit-for-tat attack because Phillips quite reasonably asked why the various candidates for the Tory leadership kept their mouths well shut when Bozo was guzzling wine and canapes. But as this comment shows, the reply really doesn’t stick.

And we have to make sure it doesn’t to stop the Tories using it to keep themselves and their awful polices in government.

The Asian Religious Groups Who Defended Sarah Champion’s Remarks about the Grooming Gangs

July 19, 2022

Sarah Champion was the Labour MP for Rochdale, who was forced to resign from the front bench after writing a piece in the Scum stating that the grooming gangs were made up of Pakistani men. Which they largely have been, though not exclusively. Champion was, however, defended by Sara Rowbotham, the council whistleblower who exposed the gangs and there was a letter in the Times by members of the Sikh, Hindu and British Pakistani communities defending her and applauding a female Muslim councillor, who also worked to bring these scumbags to justice. I found this report from the Huffington Post UK by Owen Bennett from the 5th September 2017. It begins

Religious Groups Defend Sarah Champion For Claim UK Has A ‘Problem’ With Pakistani Rapists

‘Victims are being sacrificed on the altar of political correctness.’

A number of Sikh, Hindu and British Parkistani groups have come to the defence of a Labour MP who claimed “Britain has a problem with British Pakistani men raping and exploiting white girls.”

In a letter to The Times today, representatives of the groups – including Lord Singh of Wimbledon – praised Sarah Champion for taking a “courageous stand” in highlighting “a clear trend in criminality.”

The letter also accused the Labour leadership of having a “weak response” to the issue of grooming gangs.

Champion was sacked from Labour’s Shadow Cabinet after making the comments in an article for The Sun, but in an interview last weekend she defended her words, saying the “floppy left” in her party were too scared of being accused of racism to tackle child sexual exploitation carried out by grooming gangs.

In a letter today, representatives of groups including the Network of Sikh Organisations, the British Pakistani Christian Association and Hindu Council UK, said: “We commend Sarah Champion and the Muslim councillor Amina Lone for speaking up on a clear trend in criminality: the conviction of men of largely Pakistani Muslim heritage in sexual grooming cases.

“Despite being sacked from the shadow cabinet, Champion continues to make a courageous stand.”

The letter argues that it’s not just “white girls who fall victim” to grooming gangs, but youngsters from their respective communities.

“The common denominator is that victims almost always tend to be non-Muslim girls,” the letter reads , adding: “We are dismayed by the Labour leadership’s weak response.

“We are not willing to see the betrayal of victims, who are being sacrificed on the altar of political correctness.

“It’s not racist or Islamophobic to raise a matter of significant public concern. Smearing those speaking an inconvenient truth is unacceptable.”’

For more information, see https://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/entry/sarah-champion-grooming-gangs_uk_59ae77c2e4b0dfaafcf255ef

This does indicate that there’s a religious component to the grooming gangs predations. Nevertheless, it should not be forgotten either that whatever Tommy Robinson, Britain First or whoever else says, these men were definitely not practicing Muslims. Not when they were into drugs and alcohol, which are definitely forbidden to Muslims, and their crimes have nothing to do with Muslim sex slavery. They were just evil men, preying on the vulnerable, as rapists and child abusers among all races and religions do.

And despite the Tories’ divide and rule strategy, it was Labour MPs who stood up for these girls and who had the backing of a wide section of the Asian community.

Sarah Champion, the Labour MP, Who Warned About the Asian Grooming Gangs

July 19, 2022

As I’ve said in the previous article, the Tories and the populist right are trying to present the grooming gangs scandal as the fault of the Labour party, as the gangs were allowed to get away with their monstrous crimes in towns with Labour-run councils. This is part of a wider strategy of divide and rule to alienate the White working class from the Black and Asian community and the Labour party. But Mark Pattie, one of the many great commenters on this blog, has pointed out that it was the Labour MPs Simon Danczuk and Sarah Champion who worked to bring the gangs to justice. Champion, however, was forced to resign from the Labour front bench after writing a piece in the Scum stating that the gangs were Pakistani. This is largely true, though they also included scumbags of other ethnicities. She was accused of racism, but also had the support of Sara Rowbotham, the whistleblower on the council who exposed the gangs, as well as members of the Sikh, Hindu and Pakistani communities. Rowbotham was also played by the actress Maxine Peake in a BBC drama about the gangs, Three Girls. I found a piece by Rachel Wearmouth in the Huffington Post from 17th September 2017 in which Rowbotham defended Champion. It begins

Rochdale Grooming Scandal Whistleblower Defends Sarah Champion And Slams Austerity

Council worker played by Maxine Peake said the Labour Party has to encourage debate after race row.

The hero whistleblower of the Rochdale abuse scandal has said Sarah Champion should not have lost her job over controversial race comments she made in The Sun.

Champion was sacked as Labour’s shadow women and equalities minister after saying “Britain has a problem with British Pakistani men” raping white girls in a column in the newspaper in the wake of fresh grooming prosecutions in Newcastle.

But Sara Rowbotham, the woman lauded for exposing a criminal gang who abused young girls in Rochdale, has defended the Rotherham MP.

Rowbotham, now a Labour councillor, said Champion should not have made “sweeping statements” but told HuffPost UK: “We should be exploring all the issues, not just shutting people down because we don’t like what they are saying.

“Sarah Champion has been a real champion for young people in Rotherham and she has worked hard, but she disappointed me by some of the things that she said, and that she said them in The Sun.”

Corbyn said the Labour Party was “not going to blame any particular group, or demonise any particular group.”

Champion was branded “racist” by many Labour supporters but a number of Sikh, Hindu and British Pakistani groups came to her defence, saying in a letter to The Times she had taken a “courageous stand” in highlighting “a clear trend in criminality.”

Asked if Champion should have kept her job, Rowbotham said “yes,” before adding: “We have to encourage debate.

“If the Labour Party is a broad church then those views should be allowed to be heard but also be heard with something substantial that argues back against it, or that encourages the debate further.”

Rowbotham, who was portrayed by Maxine Peake in the BBC docudrama Three Girls, added: ”[Champion] is a knowledgeable, articulate woman. We benefit from having that debate with her.”’

For further information, please go to https://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/entry/sara-rowbotham-sarah-champion_uk_59bbad52e4b02da0e14106d5.

I have the greatest respect for Danczuk, Rowbotham and Champion for acting against the gangs, even if some of Champion’s comments were tactless at best. And kudos too to the Asians who supported her. Their support graphically demonstrates that the grooming gangs are not some kind of intrinsic problem within the Asian community or Islam. The gangs were anti-White racists, but they were also just evil men preying on the vulnerable.

We need to bear this in mind and come together to oppose the grooming gangs, along with all other kinds of racism. And very definitely not let the Tories distort this to divide this country’s hard-pressed working people from each other to their benefit and that of an exploitative privileged elite.

Private Eye on New Labour Rigging Party Election in Rotherham

October 26, 2021

This comes from the ‘H.P. Sauce’ column in Private Eye’s edition for 30th November – 13th December 2012 nine years ago. It’s about how Tom Watson, Angela Eagle and Keith Vaz nobbled the party election in Rotherham to exclude the popular candidate and get their people in, to the disgust of the local party. The piece runs

Labour has a dismal record of fixing selection contests, but the “Rotherham fiasco” marks a new low.

After local MP Denis “expenses fiddler” MacShane was belatedly expelled from parliament, the party’s “special selections” committee arrived in South Yorkshire to draw up a shortlist for the by-election on 29 November.

MP Tom Watson presided, supported by Keith Vaz and Angela Eagle, and their first casualty was popular local councillor Mahroof Hussain. He was followed out the door by Yorkshire-based solicitor Richard Burgon, who had the support of nine affiliated trade unions – a record for any potential Labour candidate in recent times.

Watson and chums opted instead for the chief executive of a cancer relief charity, Sarah Champion, and one Sophy Gardner, an RAF Wing Commander. Realising their decision might not go down too well with the comrades, Watson demanded that the vote of the selections committee “not be recorded”.

Hearing of the “fix”, more than 80 members of Rotherham Labour Party duly walked out in disgust, leaving the two endorsed candidates to slug it out, with Champion receiving all of 13 votes to her rival’s 11.

Not everyone was cowed by the order “not to speak to the media.” After the mass exit, one disgruntled comrade told the Rotherham Advertiser: “These people who ‘arrive’ in Rotherham to further their careers and then decide they know enough about us to represent us, make me sick. What a slap in the face to impose someone who has been a card carrying member for two years and a union member for two weeks. You would have thought they had learned a lesson because they imposed MacShane and they say we aren’t capable of choosing a candidate! Excuse me while I go and puke.”‘

This shows just how long the Blairites have been rigging elections, though I’ve no doubt that there were cases going even further back when Blair was parachuting in his preferred candidates to safe Labour seats over the wishes of the local party. Given this piece of prime Blairite corruption, it should have been no surprise when Starmer started changing the selection rules against the Left.

Labour Rebels Want to Create Party within a Party, and Corbyn’s Response

July 31, 2016

Mike’s put up two pieces reporting and commenting on the plan of unnamed Labour rebels to set up a separate party within the Labour party against Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership.

It was reported in the Mirror and Torygraph that senior Labour rebels were so convinced that Corbyn would win the leadership, they want to create virtually a second party, with its own shadow cabinet and leader. They would also issue a legal challenge to get control of the Labour party’s name and assets, and would petition John Bercow, the Speaker of the House of Commons, to nominate them as the official opposition.

Mike comments that the idea seems ‘hopelessly naive’. He makes the point that if they did carry out their plans, they would disrupt opposition to the Tories, and convince the majority of Labour members and supporters that they are really ‘Red Tories’ – Conservatives in disguise. Any attempt to gain the party’s name and assets would fail without the support of the majority of members. Mike also notes that they are also making a huge assumption that the majority of their rebel MPs would stay with them, when one of them, Sarah Champion, has already recanted and re-joined the Corbynites. He also notes that none of the leaders of this supposed plot have had the courage to reveal their identities, thus demonstrating once again the cowardice that has led their detractors to call them the ‘Chicken Coup’. And without knowing their identities, for all we know the story may have been made up by the Mirror and Torygraph. He concludes by stating that the only thing this will do is undermine Owen Smith’s own bid for the leadership.

See http://voxpoliticalonline.com/2016/07/30/contempt-for-democracy-labour-rebels-plan-to-start-their-own-party-within-a-party/

Later yesterday Mike also put up a piece from the Groaniad, reporting Corbyn and McDonnell’s response to news of the plot. Corbyn said

“We are getting into some fairly bizarre territory here where unnamed MPs, funded from unnamed sources, are apparently trying to challenge – via the Daily Telegraph, very interesting – the very existence of this party.”

He stated that the Labour party was founded by pioneers, brave people, and that under the registration of parties act, they are the Labour party. There isn’t another, and he was very proud to be the leader of the Labour party. He also stated that it was nonsense that his leadership could cause a split, as membership had doubled since he became leader, and activity had increased.

McDonnell urged Smith to condemn the minority of MPs supporting his campaign, who were trying to subvert the election and damage the Labour party. Smith, when asked for a comment, said he refuses to indulge in gossip.

See http://voxpoliticalonline.com/2016/07/30/bizarre-labour-rebels-can-never-steal-the-partys-name-and-assets-corbyn/

The Labour party has suffered a series of splits over its century-long history. Hyndman’s Social Democratic Federation, which was one of the Socialist groups involved in the foundation of the party, later split away in the 1920s to form, with other groups, the Communist Party. Keir Hardie’s ILP also split, to carry on as a radical Socialist party. One of its most distinctive policies was a complete rejection of the wages system. Outside the Labour party it very swiftly declined. The last time I heard anything about it was thirty years ago, when I found a copy of its magazine/ newsletter in Cheltenham Public Library.

The most recent and notorious of the splits was that of the SDP in the 1980s, formed by the right-wing Labour MPs Shirley Williams, Roy Jenkins and David Owen. They claimed to be ‘breaking the mould of British politics’, and Owen at the 1987 election told the party faithful to go back home and prepare for government. There was then, almost inevitably, a Tory victory. Screaming Lord Sutch later offered Owen a place in his Monster Raving Loony Party, saying cheekily that if Owen had joined them, he would be preparing for government. The SDP forged an alliance with the Liberals, and the two eventually merged to become the Liberal Democrats. They have also signally failed break the mould of British politics, despite the Guardian telling everyone to go out and vote for them at the 2010 elections. As for Owen, in the 1980s he was so desperate for power that at one point he even offered to support the Tories in a coalition, just as thirty years later Clegg decided to get into bed with Cameron.
And the SDP were also influenced by the neoliberal ideas of the Chicago School. Ann Soper, their Shadow Education Minister, was a fan of Milton Friedman’s ideas for school vouchers, which parents could use either on state education, or private.

If such a split did occur, it would be extremely unpleasant indeed. The wrangling about party assets and name could take years to settle. The vast majority of grassroots members would depart, and stay with Corbyn. And I’ve no doubt that rather than establishing themselves as the ‘official’ Labour party, the coup plotters would find the British public turning their backs on them as treacherous and untrustworthy intriguers. They’d decline into another rump party, while Corbyn’s faction would probably expand. They might also go the same way as the SDP, and try to join the Liberal Democrats after the number of their MPs declined past a certain point, no doubt all the while grumbling about ‘unelectable’ Corbyn being somehow responsible for the misfortunes they had all brought down on themselves.