Yesterday the Election Commission announced that Britain First was once again authorized to be an official political party.
Her application was approved by the commission four years after she was struck off for not renewing her registration on time.
I broke the news with horror to my husband in total shock. How did we get here? In the wake of Brexit and then the day after George Floyd, how is it possible that we are in a place where the far right has become even more emboldened?
As a visibly Muslim woman wearing the hijab, I find the rhetoric and vitriol that Britain First uses to rally and garner support incredibly offensive and frightening. In fact, I find their position openly inciting hatred against Muslims and Islam in the UK.
I am absolutely stunned that a party with such views and ideologies was allowed to run as an official political party, potentially allowing Members of Parliament to espouse those views in the House of Commons. As far as I am concerned, they are breaking laws criminalizing incitement to hatred on the basis of race or religion in the UK.
My reaction differs greatly from that of my husband; he suggested that I shouldn’t be surprised in this post-Brexit world. We are fully aware that hate crimes against people considered immigrants or different because of their race or religion increased after the 2016 referendum. Brexit benefited from people’s otherness, and Britain First is doing the same. .
I have been a victim of hate crimes before and I feel like lately, since Brexit, hate crimes and abuse have escalated.
My biggest concern is that by allowing Britain First to have such a platform to express these discriminatory and hateful ideologies against Muslims in particular, I fear that once again my family and I are the victims of this action.
Britain First has previously stated the following regarding Muslims and Islam existing in Europe: “There is a cancer running through Europe and that is Islam. Our children are being bombed, our children are being treated and our government is doing nothing… Evil will not prevail.
Their ideologies, their hate speech, their rhetoric against Islam and Muslims have now been legitimized and formalized and as a visibly Muslim woman it scares me deep inside.