Former UK Equality Chief: anti-racism is an “ugly new doctrine”
He says that “anti-racism” has been turned into an “‘ugly new doctrine.” He says that anti-racism has endangered lives by aiding Islamic terrorists and Pakistani rape gangs.
Philips is now calling for people to speak openly about race, without worrying about offending people.
A former equality chief has branded his years working to stamp out racial discrimination as ‘utterly wrong’.
Writer and broadcaster Trevor Phillips said efforts made under the Blair government turned anti-racism into an ‘ugly new doctrine’.
Mr Phillips is the former chairman of the Equality and Human Rights Commission and has waged a 30-year campaign to tackle issues around discrimination and equality.
In an upcoming Channel 4 documentary, called Things We Won’t Say About Race That Are True, he says attempts to stop prejudice instead encouraged abuse and endangered lives as well as contributed to the rise of parties like Ukip.
In the 75-minute documentary, he delves into Britain’s racial tensions and stereotypes as well as hostilities towards immigrants.
He explains: ‘It was my job to to make sure that different racial and religious groups got on.
‘Campaigners like me seriously believed that if we could prevent people expressing prejudiced ideas then eventually they would stop thinking them.
‘But now I’m convinced we were utterly wrong.’
Mr Phillips, a Labour party member, says anti-racism began with good intentions but turned into ‘thought control’.
He says the London 2005 bombing by British Muslims, forced him to do rethink his views.
Now, he insists that only a willingness to talk more openly about race, despite risk of causing offence, will help those in need.
According to the co-producers Outline Productions, Phillips “confronts some uncomfortable truths about racial stereotypes” and tackles head-on “how a diverse society should deal with racial and religious offence”.
Phillips said: “The dividing lines of race, religion and culture are probably the most dangerous flashpoints in Britain today but they’re also the ones we find hardest to talk about in public. This film points to ways in which we can say what’s on our minds without being accused of being bigots.”
David Glover, Channel 4 head of specialist factual, said: “This film contains some very uncomfortable facts about race. Trevor Phillips now strongly believes that it’s important to get them out there so ultimately we can understand and tackle them. Trevor is arguably the best qualified person in the country to examine these issues. What’s fascinating is that having thought so deeply about them he now has a very different approach to the subject than he used to.”
Outline Productions’ creative director, Helen Veale, said: “Trevor has had a unique role in shaping equality legislation in Britain and his views on where we’re heading make for a powerful and challenging film.”