UKIP-voting PN reader

ImageAs a probable voter for UKIP I take great exception on your presumption of racism by so doing [see editorial in PN 2576–77]. There is a law in this country against racism but you blithely make these assumptions.

For some time now I’ve been disappointed in the political bias that seems to be leading the Peace News in the wrong direction. The article quoted is the final nail in my desire to support your paper. I’ve done this all my life. You should look back to your 1960 editions when it was at its best. It is now a poor imitation.

There is an easy assumption that all racism is white. This is not my life experience. I believe racism is a tribal condition that all tribes are guilty of.

I will vote for UKIP on an overcrowding agenda. Overcrowding like the rats leads to inevitable violence. You people seem not to understand this simple fact.

Incidentally it was not UKIP that led this country into criminal war. You should direct your criticism at those who were.

I have an impression that this article was initiated by Milan Rai with his own political agenda.

Less partisan politics and more on the military.

There may be myths about immigration and Islam but there are also myths about the ‘real problems in society’.

J Kelly, London

Editor's response:

Thank you for your letter. Looking back on the editorial, I wish we had been clearer that we don’t see voting UKIP as a racist act.

On the other hand, we do see UKIP as having a racist leadership which, for instance, targets Eastern Europeans. For example, Nigel Farage said that people wouldn’t want to live next door to Romanians.

Presenter James O’Brien asked the UKIP leader about this in May 2014 on LBC radio: ‘What about if a group of German children [moved in]? What’s the difference?’

Farage responded: ‘You know what the difference is.... We want an immigration system based on controlling not only quantity but quality as well.’

He did not explain why Germans were acceptable (he is married to a German) but Romanians are not.

In the same interview, Nigel Farage said: ‘We would be far better off if the policy did not discriminate against doctors from New Zealand or engineers from India in favour of anybody regardless of background and skills coming from southern and eastern Europe and that is the great debate.’

Perhaps you see these remarks as untypical of the UKIP leadership.

I would like to know more about your concerns about overcrowding in the UK: what signs of overcrowding you see; what you think is causing it; and what effects you believe it is having on Britain right now.

You suggest that the editorial was ‘initiated by Milan Rai with his own political agenda’. I’d like to point out that it was pressure from two white members of staff, who are deeply worried about the rise of UKIP, that led to the editorial. It was certainly not my initiative.