Thursday 9 August 2012

The Daily Mail: Fascism, racism and homophobia

During the 1930s the Daily Mail were big supporters
of Oswald Mosley's British Union of Fascists.
Criticising the Daily Mail is like shooting fish in a barrel. This is a newspaper with a history of bigotry and racism that makes the corruption riddled Murdoch press seem quite reasonable in comparison. The Daily Mail has been criticised many times before, but it is never a waste of time to keep reminding people that Britain's second most read daily newspaper is a despicable extremist rag with an absolutely shocking history.

Pretty much everyone knows the reason that the Daily Mail is often referred to as the "Daily Heil" is that in the 1930s the Mail ran numerous articles praising Nazi Germany, the Hitler Youth, Mussolini's Italy and the British Union of Fascists. This era of Fascist sympathising from the Mail produced one of the most notorious headlines in the history of British print media; "Hurrah for the blackshirts", which was written by the proprietor Lord Rothmere, a personal friend of both Benito Mussolini and Adolf Hitler.

As the Second World War loomed, the editorial approach of the Daily Mail was changed in order to avoid charges of treason. The paper stopped overtly praising the Nazi regime and dropped their support for the BUF however they continued to argue in favour of appeasement until the eve of war, declaring that "Czechs are of no concern to Englishmen" in 1938 shortly before the remainder of the country was invaded by the Nazis in 1939.

Despite being forced to moderate their editorial stance on fascism during the war, the Rothmere family have retained a controlling interest in the paper until the present day and their "newspaper" has retained a deeply bigoted editorial stance. The paper has churned out anti-immigration rhetoric for decades, fearmongaring and spreading lies about immigrant crime waves and illegal immigrants on benefits. Throughout the 1980s the paper openly opposed the boycott of the racist Apartheid regime in South Africa. In 1993 the paper ran the disgustingly homophobic headline "Abortion hope after 'gay genes' finding" and in 2009 the columnist Jan Moir penned a homophobic tirade against the gay singer Stephen Gately less than a week after his death.

In the build-up to the 2012 London Olympics the Mail ran an article claiming that 61 members of Team GB weren't properly British, having been born overseas. The description of these athletes as "plastic Brits" was widely criticised, since the majority of them were entitled to British citizenship through British descent, while many others as a result of long term residency in the UK. Only 8 of the 61 so-called plastic Brits had ever competed for other nations. Two of Britain's most popular and successful athletes (Mo Farah & Bradley Wiggins) were amongst those classified as "plastic Brits" by the Mail.

Not content with one bigoted Olympic blunder the Mail then ran a disgustingly reactionary piece by Rick Dewsbury criticising the multiculturalism of the Olympic opening ceremony. The most offensive part of the article read:
"But it was the absurdly unrealistic scene showing a mixed-race middle-class family in a detached new-build suburban home, which was most symptomatic of the politically correct agenda in modern Britain. This was supposed to be a representation of modern life in England but it is likely to be a challenge for the organisers to find an educated white middle-aged mother and black father living together with a happy family in such a set-up."
The idea that there is no such thing as a happy mixed-race family is deeply racist and reeks of the kind of ethnic purity obsessions of the Nazis that won such praise from the Daily Mail in the 1930s.

After yet another storm of criticism the Mail sneakily removed the offending page from their website, however an archived version of the article can be seen here.

The simplest answer to this  kind of overt racism is to point in the direction British gold medal winning heptathlete and wonderful example to all aspiring sportspeople; Jessica Ennis. A woman who demonstrates an admirable blend of dedication, professionalism and honesty, who happens to be the product of a happy mixed-race family. Just look how proud and happy her mother and father look in the image to the left. 

Just a few days after dismissing the concept of a happy mixed race family, the Daily Mail ran another disgusting article in which the auther quoted Nazi Holocaust propaganda ('Arbeit Macht Frei') as advice to the unemployed. Again they sneakily removed the offending text when people started complaining, without even including an amendment note or an apology. Here's a screenshot of the text they were prepared to publish but no longer want you to see.

The Daily Mail is still owned by the fascist Lord Rothmere's descendant Jonathan Harmsworth (who is domiciled in Monaco for the purposes of avoiding the UK tax system) and it is absolutely clear that they are still polluting the British mediascape with the same kind of racist bilge.

It is bemusing that so many people continue to read such filth and even more bemusing that 53% of their readership is female. When one tends to think of the kind of bigoted reactionary idiot that might read the Daily Mail the mental image that pops to mind is one of a badly tattooed, incoherent and sweary bloke, however the majority of people reading the Mail's reactionary bile are actually women!

If you know anyone that reads the Daily Mail, please try to educate them about the Mail's disgusting history of fascism, racism and homophobia. If they quit buying it, you will have done them a favour, if they continue to buy it then you have done yourself a favour by determining that your acquaintance is the kind of person who is perfectly willing to turn a blind eye to undeniable evidence of bigotry, racism and homophobia because they like the crossword page, the sports section or the celebrity gossip pages too much.

Ignorance is hardly an excuse for reading the Mail, however if the reader knows the Mail's vile history of supporting fascism and printing racist and homophobic abuse, they have no excuse at all for supporting it with their cash.

 Another Angry Voice  is a "Pay As You Feel" website. You can have access to all of my work for free, or you can choose to make a small donation to help me keep writing. The choice is entirely yours.

Austerity is a con
The terrifying scale of political illiteracy in the UK
The myth of right-wing patriotism
How George Osborne has created more debt than every Labour government in history combined
Recommended reading - heterodox economics
Why 73% of UKIP supporters should actually vote Green
How the Labour Party completely lost the plot in Scotland
Rupert Murdoch's evil empire

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