|Diane Abbott faces calls to resign over ‘racist’ tweet|
By Adam Parris-Long | Yahoo! News – 45 minutes ago
Labour MP Diane Abbott has faced calls for her resignation after a tweet she posted said that "white people love playing divide and rule”
The Hackney North and Stoke Newington MP came under fire for the tweet posted on Wednesday night, with Conservative MP Nadhim Zahawi calling for her resignation. “A healthy society should not tolerate any form of racism, Diane Abbott should apologise and resign or Ed Miliband must sack her,”
Zahawi said. Former Conservative MP Paul Goodman added to the calls, stating that “even the most clear cut apology won’t do”.
The post was a reply to journalist Bim Adewunmi who had commented on the use of the term ‘black community’ in coverage of the Stephen Lawrence trial. Diane Abbott has since said that the tweet was “taken out of context”. She asserted that it referred “to the nature of 19th century European colonialism” and that it was a “bit much to get into 140 characters”.
“I understand people have interpreted my comments as making generalisations about white people, I do not believe in doing that," Abbott said in a statement. "I apologise for any offence caused".
Backing Diane Abbott, Labour MP Chuka Umunna said: "Of course what was stated…was clearly unacceptable but she has unreservedly apologized. She is a politician who stands for equality, who stands against prejudice and hatred."
"It was something that was tweeted in the early hours of the morning and it doesn’t reflect what she or the Labour party believes. As public figures our word are our tools and so you have to exercise real care."
Responding to the post a Labour spokesman said: “We disagree with Diane’s tweet. It is wrong to make sweeping generalisations about any race, creed, or culture. The Labour Party has always campaigned against such behaviour- and so has Diane Abbott.”
Diane Abbott stood for the Labour party leadership in 2010, eventually losing out to Ed Miliband. She is currently the shadow minister for public health.
|QUOTE (Ashmolean @ Jan 5 2012, 06:56 PM)|
| This one's funny too.|
Diane disobeyed Labour's policy of State Schools for ALL by sending her lad to a Private School - possibly because she dien't want him to come into contact with too many o' da bruddas ...
|Ed Miliband in 'Blackbusters' gaffe|
By Adam Parris-Long | Yahoo! News – 42 minutes ago
Ed Miliband has become the latest politician to come a cropper on Twitter after accidentally paying tribute to Bob Holness for his work on "Blackbusters".
The gaffe came as the Labour leader was attempting to mark the death of former 'Blockbusters' presenter Holness who died on Friday morning at the age of 83. It comes a day after fellow Labour MP Diane Abbott caused uproar over a Twitter post in which she said: "White people love playing divide and rule."
Ed Miliband's blunder has led to an irreverent reaction on Twitter with both #blackbusters and #EdMilibandGameshows trending.
|An Australian publisher has had to pulp and reprint a cookbook after one recipe listed "salt and freshly ground black people" instead of black pepper.|
|Work for a white Conservative: What Abbott told Tory-voting graduate who asked for a job|
By Simon Walters
Last updated at 7:04 PM on 15th January 2012
Ed Miliband faced new calls to rebuke Labour frontbencher Diane Abbott last night after she told a young, Tory-voting black graduate who asked her for work that she wasn’t doing the ‘black thing’ and should ‘go and work for a white Conservative’ instead.
The new race row involving Ms Abbott comes two weeks after she was forced to apologise for saying ‘white people love to divide and rule’ following the trial of the killers of black teenager Stephen Lawrence.
Politics graduate Jade Knight, 25, told yesterday how she approached Ms Abbott about the chances of work after recognising her at a branch of Boots in London’s Piccadilly.
‘I was in London for a job interview and I was doing some shopping when I saw Ms Abbott,’ she said.
‘I told how I admired her and though I didn’t always agree with her and was a conservative, I loved watching and listening to her on TV. Then I went off to buy a drink.
‘I phoned and told my mum, who knows I would love to work in politics and I said, “Do you think I should have asked her if I could work for her?” She said, “Yes, it’s a great chance to network. Go for it.”
‘So I went downstairs and found Ms Abbott and said I hoped she didn’t mind me asking her, but if there was any kind of work I could do for her, I would love the opportunity.
‘She said, “You’d be better off working for a white Conservative. You’re a black conservative, you don’t do the black thing.” I couldn’t believe she had said it.
‘She was basically accusing me of selling out, which is not true. I told her being a conservative wasn’t going against my heritage. Anyone who understands black culture knows black culture can be very conservative. I thought she would understand that as she is educated.’
British-born Ms Knight, whose father is a Nigerian immigrant, went to school at a London comprehensive before gaining her degree. She is not a member of the Conservative Party but regards herself as a ‘social conservative’.
She explained to Ms Abbott that she was a committed Christian and had become a conservative with a small ‘c’ after working with disadvantaged black and Hispanic children in America.
‘Many were badly behaved and came from broken homes with no male figure and surrounded by crack addicts,’ she said. ‘I had lived for a while with an aunt and uncle in Georgia in America where most black parents were married and the kids were much better behaved.
‘It convinced me that social conservatism, with its emphasis on family values, is right.
‘I listed for Ms Abbott well-known black American conservatives like Condoleezza Rice and Colin Powell. She just said “America is different” and “Goodbye”. I wished her a nice day and was left totally bewildered.’
Ms Knight inherited her love of politics from her father, a lecturer in politics. ‘He made me watch Channel 4 News every day,’ she recalls. However, it did not lead her to embrace his support for Labour. She voted Lib Dem in the 2005 General Election and backed David Cameron in 2010.
Ms Knight, who was brought up in a churchgoing family and attends her local Pentecostal church in South-East London, says: ‘The Bible has much to teach us. I believe you should marry before you have children, respect authority and have a strong work ethic.’
Currently working as a personal shopper, Ms Knight says she believes Margaret Thatcher was a good role model as a ‘strong woman’ and also praises Mr Cameron for ‘turning his party’s image around’.
But not all her political heroes are Conservatives. She says she admires Tony Blair’s reputation as an international statesman and was also a fan of former Lib Dem leader Charles Kennedy.
Her exchange with Ms Abbott in Boots occurred before the MP’s ‘whites divide and rule’ gaffe.
Ms Knight says: ‘I wasn’t surprised after what she said to me. She was very rude and should learn some people skills.’
Ms Abbott was unavailable for comment.