space IWCA banner IWCA banner IWCA logo space

As London detectives are investigate their 116th murder this year the Left pines for an ordinary decent racist murder – what’s progressive about that?

As of 29 October, London detectives are investigating their 116th murder this year. In March, it was reported that the London Air Ambulance is used more for victims of knife or gun crime than for road traffic accidents. And were it not for the battlefield skills of the trauma surgeons in London’s hospitals the death rate would easily be double or even triple. It is the potential murders, (5,570 knife crimes resulting in injury or an attempt to inflict serious harm) rather than fatalities that illustrate the truer picture.

Yet until recently liberal opinion was stridently insistent that violent crime was down, or alternatively the level of knife, gun and acid attacks were somehow entirely normal. Just because the killers all too often shared the same politically inconvenient heritage, ‘move along, nothing to see here’ was the message.

Victims of knife crime in London 2018


In the 2016 election campaign Labour Mayoral candidate Sadiq Khan pitched directly to this ideological blind spot, pledging to “do all in my power to further cut the use” of stop and search. For detractors of the tactic, the disproportionate numbers of black males being stopped was in itself the proof of malign intent. Even someone like Duwayne Brooks, who was with Stephen Lawrence on the night he was murdered, believes the criminal charges that resulted from specific searches for knives were so tiny that the measure could not be justified.

However, a bit of gentle digging reveals this argument relies entirely on a selective reading of the statistics. Whilst it is true that specific searches for knives shows a miniscule return, when searches for other types of contraband such as drugs were conducted knives typically turned up as well. And furthermore, at the time of day and the areas where the searches were conducted the individuals being stopped were not unrepresentative of the racial demographic in the neighbourhood in question. So in a sea of pale faces it is not the standout black face that is the perpetual target of a bigoted Plod after all.

Now none of this might matter except for the fact that the Mayor’s genuflection to political correctness happened to coincide with violent crime rocketing in the capital. As well as gun, knife, and moped muggings, acid attacks have also been added to the criminally lumpen portfolio on his watch.

But when celebrities like comedian Michael McIntyre were being brazenly robbed on the school run, middle class liberals realised the mayhem was edging towards them too. So without any explanation Khan did an abrupt about-turn. Stop and search was back in (knife attacks have dropped dramatically from October last year: down by 40% for under 25’s) along with a new multi-agency approach modelled on the successful Glaswegian model, which is credited with dramatically reducing stabbings and violent assaults in the city by targeting the city’s historic gangs.

However, this strategic approach of looking to the ‘causes of crime’ in Glasgow took ten years to fully kick in. Also ignored in welcoming in the fluffier sounding promise of approaching the problem from a ‘health perspective’ is that a crackdown on the gangs, and especially the hard-core element, is absolutely central. If the knife carrying contagion is to be reversed, the irreconcilables will have to be dealt with swiftly and harshly – first. When children are being disembowelled, or executed in broad daylight via a shotgun blast to back of the head, such urgency makes perfect sense. Or so you would think.

But because the victims and perpetrators alike tend to be minority ethnic, the left is already complaining that a database of gang affiliates is “disproportionate”.

Identity politics has basically erased social class as a reference point, so whenever there’s a problem, the authorities invariably refer to the ‘black community’, and the gangsters who terrorise it are automatically factored in as part of it. It then follows that any move against the gangs is presented by the media as an attack on the community as whole. The foregrounding of the tribunes of the lumpen that follows forces the black working class who hate and fear them onto the back foot, with ‘race traitor’ being one implication.

Which is why for Mayor Khan, black-on-black killings are awkward. The political optic is just not a comfortable fit with his base. So up until September he didn’t lift a finger until he committed £500,000 to the new Violence Reduction Unit, which is exactly half of what the Glasgow authorities – with a population fifteen times smaller and significantly less diverse than London – put up. Now, even on its own the Metropolitan Police emergency reserve fund is £240 million, yet with a record 15,000 knife offences last year Khan was still pleading poverty.

“You have to wonder whether ministers and the police would have done more, sooner, to tackle the deadly trend if more of the victims were white” was a question posed by the Independent’s Sean O’Grady in April this year, following another BBC documentary on Stephen Lawrence. What is interesting about the question is the precision with which he gets it wrong. Politicians like Khan certainly would have done more, sooner, but only if the killers rather than victims were white. That at least would have gifted the Left something to mobilise behind.

But when denied the opportunity to attribute a racist motive they simply lack the political will. Which raises the question of how many other black youngsters have been murdered in the capital since and – Damilola Taylor aside – who can honestly recall the name of any one of them? Tellingly, when the BBC did a dramatization of Damilola’s murder in 2016, viewers were left with the impression the accused were white. So vast has been the political capital accrued by liberals off the back of a single racist murder a quarter of a century ago, they simply cannot let it go. Which is why, even amidst all the blood splatter and body bags, a self-absorbed Left continues to pine for an ordinary decent racist murder.

This article first appeared on the Independent Working Class Association facebook page on the date given above and has been transferred here in August 2019.

One Response to “As London detectives are investigate their 116th murder this year the Left pines for an ordinary decent racist murder – what’s progressive about that?”

  1. Will Says:

    Thank you for updating this website in addition to your Facebook.

Leave a Reply