Starkey Racism Row: It Is the Political Elite’s Ceaseless Denigration of White Working-Class Culture That Has ‘Turned Kids Black’

Brendan O’Neill, The Telegraph (London), August 16, 2011

Anyone who has met a white working-class lad or lass aged between 11 and 19 will know that David Starkey had a point when he said, rather crudely, that white chavs “have become black”. One of the curiosities of the gym that I go to in Lambeth in South London is that all the white teens speak in a bizarre, so-called “black accent”, while the black guys in their mid to late 30s who run the gym speak in an accent that is far more instantly recognisable as “London”. They sound a lot more like me than the white kids do. (Which isn’t surprising–they actually are more like me than the white kids are, having likewise been brought up in working-class parts of London in that now seemingly distant era of the 1980s and 90s.)

But Starkey and his minuscule number of defenders are wrong to claim that this so-called “blacking” of white youth (God, that’s a terrible way to put it) is down to the invasion of Britain by Jamaican values and language. Listening to Starkey and Co., you could be forgiven for thinking that Jamaicans have culturally colonised this fragile island, winning over “our youth” to their allegedly peculiar ways. In truth, it is Britain’s own denigration of white working-class culture and lifestyles, the political and media classes’ ceaseless war of words against the way the white working classes live, love, speak and act, which communicates to white youngsters the message: “Your culture is shit. Find another one.”

If it were true, as Starkey seems to believe, that Jamaican or West Indian immigrants brought to Britain an alien culture which they have successfully spread amongst the young, then how would we explain the fact that in the 1970s and 80s even the children of these immigrants didn’t speak the way that black and white kids speak these days? The black kids I grew up with in the 1980s didn’t talk like Ms Dynamite or Dizzee Rascal–they spoke in the same nondescript, t-dropping accent as the rest of us. Remember Desmond’s, the Channel 4 sitcom in which the immigrant parents and their friends had strong Guyanan or Jamaican accents but their British-born children sounded a bit cockney? That’s how most urban black youth in London used to speak. (My nextdoor neighbours were Guyanans: the parents sounded like Desmond and Co, their offspring like the characters in EastEnders.)

What changed is not so much that blacks, followed by whites, immersed themselves in the lingo or outlook of their ancestors, but rather that white working-class culture has in recent years been denigrated to an extraordinary degree. From the way the white working classes speak (un-PC, foul) to what they eat (“junk food”, which makes them “obese”) to what they wear (the girls dress like “slags”, the boys like “scum”), virtually every facet of white working-class life has been subjected to the ridicule of the political and cultural elite, finding itself mocked on TV shows and tut-tutted over or legislated against in parliament and the press. Meanwhile working-class institutions are either in a state of disarray (trade unions being the best example) or have been invaded by the intolerant nannies and nudgers of the prole-loathing elite: consider the public house, once a relatively free zone, now colonised by morality cops on the lookout for smoking, excessive boozing and anything with a whiff of rowdiness. Football games, post-work pints, EastEnd attitude, northern grit–hardly any aspect of white working-class culture has escaped being problematised by the snobs, therapists and health obsessives who govern modern Britain.

At the same time, immigrant cultures are more likely to be celebrated, as “vibrant” by the educational establishment and as “cool” by the trustafarian chattering classes who like nothing better than listening to Niggaz with Attitude on their outsized headphones. The movers and shakers of modern British society demonise white working-class culture while simultaneously slumming it with what they consider to be the “noble savages” of the immigrant community. In such a climate, is it really any wonder that white working-class kids are “turning black”? Their so-called “blackness” was not in any way the cause of the riots, but it does point to a problem that at least contributed to that urban upheaval: the fact that huge swathes of lower-class youth feel cut off not only from society but also from their traditional cultures, turning them into confused, at-sea, potentially nihilistic individuals.

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  • Charlie

    It’s the same in America with it’s middle-class whites.

    Movies, TV shows, commercials, advertisements, radio and all other media constantly make middle-class white ‘red necks,’ ‘trailer trash’ and other racial jokes about whites. More: University students are indoctrinated into thinking that whites have no unified culture, that they have no culture that they didn’t steal from some non-whites, and that they have no right to be proud of their race.

    Whites are ALWAYS the butt of racial jokes, and they’re expected to laugh right along with the joke. Meanwhile, our society lifts up these ‘vibrant’ diversity cultures with their fanatical religion of political correctness.

  • John L.

    Here, and elsewhere in North America, White Working Class Culture is broadly referred to as “Redneck” by Urban Sophisticates. And Yes, anti-Racism is anti- Redneck, and it is anti traditional White Culture.

  • El Pedo Gigante

    Sounds to me like the white working class youths better find themselves a WHITE working class LEADER, and start embracing THEMSELVES. A bootstrap operation. Giving in to inferior cultural ideals is never constructive. I would expect young whites to have cojones enough to have some pride in themselves, and not let the “political elites” get away with denigrating them in any way, shape or form. Create sort of like the American Revolution in the home country.

  • Sureesh

    This is EXACTLY why the children of Chinese and Indian immigrants are taking all the math and science spots at the ivy league universities- whites consider it ‘uncool’ to be smart in math and have more respect for Black basketball players than for our brainy scientists.

    Go to any ivy league university and check out the engineering department; it’s about 75 percent Asian and only 25 percent white.

  • Istvan

    My grandmother had a saying for whites that hang with blacks: “water always runs down hill”. Meaning it is easy to act stupid, lazy and violent but hard to act polite, cultured and educated. Black life is easy in the short run, which is why so many black males ahve shorter than average lives. Civilization takes hard work.

    An 1,100 year old kingdom can not be supported by stone age peoples.

  • highduke

    White working class youth had their own subculture: the Skinhead movement which became a liability to the Right when mainstream lost its racial & ethnic cohesion and then the youth were easily manipulated into violence and lawsuits that decimated the movement by the mid-90s. In Russia there are 100 000 skinheads of which 20 000 are doctors, lawyers, advisors to MPs, engineers etc, all are anti-drug, health food & excercise fanatics.

  • sbuffalonative

    The British elites have deemed most expressions of British culture and history as racists. Remember the acts of suppression surrounding Saint George and the St. George Cross?

    Race fears spark St. George ban

    http://tinyurl.com/dj5y8

    Blacks and their handlers have long claimed that people not knowing their past become dysfunctional (this is one of many excuses blacks and their apologists use to excuse, deflect, and explain bad behavior by blacks).

    While I don’t believe teaching blacks Afro-centric history will change things for blacks as they are too far removed from their African-tribal past, I do believe that denying white youth the opportunity to express their cultural heritage might make them slightly psychotic.

    Would anyone deny Caribbean blacks the right to their cultural festivals? This is precisely what the British elites have done to British youth. They have denied them the right to know and celebrate their history and who they are.

    If white youth had a solid understanding, appreciation, and love for who they are, how many white British youth would have been on the streets defending their cultural heritage instead of joining in the mayhem?

  • Anonymous

    “Sounds to me like the white working class youths better find themselves a WHITE working class LEADER…”

    ————————————-

    They have found a leader: Tommy Robinson of the English Defense League. He is constantly denigrated by the media and harassed by the police. Recently the Prime Minister made a point of belittling and insulting the English Defense League.

    http://goo.gl/k0MjB

    Here is Tommy Robinson making a fool out of a pretentious BBC reporter:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4RdJ4dpRQeE

  • rjf101

    Once again, the British press surprises and impresses me. I can’t imagine an article like this appearing in a major American publication.

    Very much the same thing is happening to American youth. As a high school student, every day I see people “acting black” all around me. Of course, it goes both ways: many minority children have adopted white values and attitudes to the degree that I hardly consider them non-white.

  • Tired of It

    The title of this article says it all. Except the stealth in which it has been done and the decades long time line the Political Elites took in implementing it.

    Now we have all forms of media complicit in this by manipulating all we see and hear on TV or read online or in the newspapers. And now major corporations have jumped on the bandwagon with their advertising.

    Every time you turn on the TV they’re (the politically correct enablers) putting down white people, usually using humor with it to make it palatable, and propping up black people. Propping them up, even if it takes out and out lying or lying by omission. They have no qualms whatsoever about any underhanded or devious tactic they choose to use, including slandering and marginalizing any person or group who does not express or agree with the Politically Elite Party Line (sound familiar?)

    They are not against using criminal tactics either. Like calling and threatening the health and welfare of the hotel and their personnel who were going to host the AmRen conference this year, citing just one example of many. But that is all I’ve understood black “culture” to be, a glorifying of the criminal lifestyle, or “thug life”. Which, to any decent or civilized person regardless of race, is the same as having no culture at all.

  • Anonymous

    A few years ago I sat to dinner at a trendy restaurant with my liberal friends. Some started talking about how they were going to move downtown(get this), because they wanted their kids to see less white people.

    “Like, it’s so boring, there’s nothing but white people here! I’m sick of just seeing white people!”

    One of these (women), they were all women, was saying this to a black girl, and all in attendance at that part of the table were just having a great laugh about it. Nobody paused a moment to consider if a white man might take offense- or if ANYONE might think this was revolting. They were so arrogantly unaware.

    At first, I was aghast, because it was not only an insane thing for a white to say, but it was overtly racist… a double standard so extreme it practically screamed; yet none of these fools saw their hypocrasy. (sp)

    Soon, it was so disgusting, I had to show my contempt. I got up and simply left.

    Whites- of the “we’re better” crowd…often artists , believers in fairy dust, new age and all that crap, are really BENT.

  • Anonymous

    “The movers and shakers of modern British society demonise white working-class culture while simultaneously slumming it with what they consider to be the “noble savages” of the immigrant community.”

    No, they don’t “slum it” in the immigrant community. They live it up in – overwhelmingly White – Hampstead, Islington, and St. John’s Wood, while telling us that we are racists for wanting our own immigrant free areas.

  • Sardonicus

    I can agree with Mr. O’Neill about the privileged elite’s hatred of lower class whites, but I’m afraid the elite’s hatred extends to the entire range of British History. Looking back at British history, many of these guilt-obsessed neurotics see only the exploitation of workers, women and minorities by the heartless white male patriarchy. They feel no pride in a nation that produced a Shakespeare, Elgar, Keats, Wordsworth, Britten, Turner, Holst, Kipling, etc. They emphasize the celebration of all other cultures but the traditional British one. Too much pride in your own country could lead to fascism in their diseased minds.

    I also disagree with O’Neil about black popular culture. It has become pathological in most Western countries, and the more blacks in a given country, the stronger the hold of this “gangsta” sociopathic culture. Will this underclass black culture change to a productive one at some later date—I doubt it, I really doubt it.

  • Anonymous

    “in North America, White Working Class Culture is broadly referred to as “Redneck” by Urban Sophisticates”.

    In other words, after 60 years of fighting racism, in this, our sensitive and politically correct society, the word ‘redneck’, a racial slur, is used in an effort to show others how enlightened the speaker is.

  • RegvlvsSeradly

    Oh yes, again we have references to the “working class”. It seems that British English does not contain any distinction between the actual Working-Class (I.E., a class which works, defined by working and not owning means of production) and the Underclass (the group that survives by handouts, crime, and produces little or no productive work).

    The Underclass and the Working-Class are, in fact, total opposites. The first is a dead weight on society, like an albatross around the neck. The second is the productive sector that makes the existence of the Middle and Upper-Classes possible.

    Any successful society works to reduce the size of its Underclass by forcing its likely membership to sell labor in order to survive, and thus enter the Working-Class. Backward societies like England display the reverse trend, where members of the Working-Class are pushed into the Underclass.

    However, most of the rioters (especially the looters) in England are almost certainly individuals of the permanent Underclass, holding life-long and hereditary peerage in England’s most depraved (not deprived) institution. Blacks represent the majority in this class, and Afro-Caribbeans the patrician rank. So, the white underclass has merely assimilated into the majority culture.

    The actual Working-Class, however, is demonized because they represent the highest risk to the ruling order. Unlike the Underclass, a strike by which would actually help the country, a true Working-Class revolt can cripple a nation the way a stalled engine stops an automobile.

    Hence the interest of dividing the Working-Class by dissolving it and importing multiple foreign working classes from Poland, Pakistan, Turkey, and everywhere else.

    Post 1 by Charlie has said it perfectly, that the Working-Class in England is essentially the same as the “middle class” (working producers, America’s Working-Class).

  • Anonymous

    The only white youths in Europe that I see embrace white culture are skinheads. Most people find skinheads revolting and they only hurt our cause. A more proper role model for our people would be a Chuck Norris type, who teaches morals, strength, and courage.

    When I was young, my German friends would commonly blast gangsta rap. It was awful. I would ask them, “do you even know what they’re rapping out? do you know what those rappers think of whites?” Now that we are older, they are still blasting that nonesense. I say, “come on guys, you’re 40 and you have phd’s. It’s time to let go of that garbage”. No one listens to me though.

  • Steven Broiles

    I do not hate black people. I do not have anything against them for their skin color. That’s just DNA to me. It is their behavior, when directed against me, that galls me. This is the effect they are after. It makes their day to stick it to whitey. This is behavior that Freud would categorize as anal. I don’t mean to be gross, but it is true.

    Look, life is a comedy of manners, but we don’t live in a Henry James novella. The standard of behavior, the courtesy, ettiquette and manners has been going down for a long time now. So much so that a lot of white kids “act black.” There is adolescence, and then there is juvenille. The next backward step is infantile. And this is how more and more teens—and adults—are behaving.

    It is emotionally, spiritually and socially retarded.

  • Sureesh

    Ironically, the vast majority of Indian and Chinese kids fit the bill in terms of white Blacks call ‘acting white.’ We “act whiter” than whites if that’s possible.

  • Anonymous

    18 — Sureesh wrote at 4:34 PM on August 18:

    Ironically, the vast majority of Indian and Chinese kids fit the bill in terms of white Blacks call ‘acting white.’ We “act whiter” than whites if that’s possible.

    ——————————

    Why do you have to act “white” Sureesh? I thought you tell us that you Indians are so much smarter and better than us lowly Whites? Maybe you got YOUR wires crossed, again.

    I AM White and I ACT White. There is nothing in the world like it.

    I don’t want to “act” Indian OR Chinese. Both groups are completely different than Whites are and have completely different civilizations.

  • Bud

    15 — RegvlvsSeradly – yes that was excellent.

    they represent the highest risk to the ruling order

    Not just economic, they also represent the highest risk to political correctness, to leftist control – among other things this class when healthy is not afraid to throw a brick on occasion, something the neutered opposition in the upper middle classes would never do, even figuratively. That’s why these classes had to be fragmented and crushed, their neighborhoods destroyed so no base could exist where opposition from them could take root. And why leftist power brokers gladly allow upper class conservatives, businessmen and others to largely opt out of affirmative action in order to bring them into the war against the middle and lower classes, a war that the upper classes were always eager to enter for reasons of class bigotry and self-interest anyway. It’s been this divide by class (and later sex) and conquer that is the root of the tragedy unfolding around us today. The Left has contempt for their genteel upper middle class talking head opponents, they fear the potential of the lower classes, which is why they attack them most viciously.

  • sheila

    I kinda feel for the writer of this article, but not very much…he is obviously too afraid to admit even to himself that what Starkey is saying is the truth.

    Black *gangsta rap* culture is seen as *cool*, uber fashionable and is now pretty much mainstream…what happens when a *counter-culture* becomes the dominate culture? …yep, you got it.

  • Anonymous

    I agree with “sheila”‘s comment that rap culture is mainstream. I see it at a university that I volunteer for. The “in” music that appeals to the broadest audience is rap. The school is 88% white, but I see freshmen who like hard-rock music, who in their later years in college prefer rap. On the other hand, they are not talking black or acting black, but just listen as a black.

  • Anonymous

    18 — Sureesh wrote at 4:34 PM on August 18:

    Ironically, the vast majority of Indian and Chinese kids fit the bill in terms of white Blacks call ‘acting white.’ We “act whiter” than whites if that’s possible.

    Or, you could just call it “ACTING CIVILIZED”.

    Or just plain having good sense and parental guidance.

    Nothing wrong with that!

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