A new NUJ website highlights the important role journalists and the union can play in opposing the rise of fascism and the BNP in the remaining weeks before the UK general election.
Reporting the BNP gives information on what the BNP actually stands for, with detailed facts and arguments to counter the far-right organisations’ unfounded claims.
NUJ general secretary Jeremy Dear said: “Challenging the fascist politics of hate is a job for every fair-minded person in our society, not just a task for committed activists. NUJ members are proud to play our part in exposing the myths on which modern Nazis seek to gain power.
“Those journalists who may still believe that the rise of the BNP doesn’t affect them should consider the experience of Dominic Kennedy, investigations editor of The Times. He was brutally manhandled by BNP ‘security guards’ who expelled him from a press conference for the unspeakable crime of saying things their leaders didn’t like.
“Strange behaviour from an organisation which claims it wants to ‘remove legal curbs on freedom of speech’. BNP leader Nick Griffin even praised his stormtroopers by saying of their thuggery: ‘That’s not the actions of a snivelling PC party, but of an organisation that has had enough of being lied about.’
“That’s the true face of the BNP’s ‘freedom of expression’ policy”.
The union’s deputy general secretary Michelle Stanistreet is among speakers for the launch on Tuesday February 23 (7pm: Amnesty International Human Rights Centre, EC2A 3EA) of EXPOSE the BNP, which aims to investigate and challenge the BNP’s attempts to construct a respectable public image, and to support media workers who refuse to work on programmes or material that break the reporting guidelines laid down by media trade unions. Michelle Stanistreet said: “Journalists have a duty to hold up to the closest scrutiny the claims and activities of those who would foment racial tension and violence. The BNP’s inflammatory rhetoric about immigration cannot be taken at face value.”