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18 February 2010

Boris secures Telegraph writer’s vote. How?

By cutting funds for Black History Month.

By James Macintyre

“Whatever Boris Johnson does now, he’s already secured my vote.” So says a Telegraph contributor, Ed West, who describes himself as “a journalist and social commentator who specialises in politics, religion and low culture”.

And what has the Mayor of London done to enjoy such an honour? West has read that Johnson “has slashed funding for a series of high-profile multicultural events, at the same time as ploughing £100,000 into a new venture to celebrate America”.

West quotes his “granny” to explain:

History is about telling the truth, not raising self-esteem — we don’t teach Irish kids that St Brendan discovered America in a boat made of stone, as my granny claimed, because it would make them feel better, or Chinese pupils that they were first into New Zealand. But the multicultural history being taught at many British schools, and being promoted by many government-funded bodies, is in the same no-man’s-land between history and myth. And too often “self-esteem” is a euphemism for ethnic chauvinism and its offspring, politically motivated pseudohistory.

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The wise words in this blog post are followed by some equally interesting “comments” below. After consuming it all, it’s slightly hard to know who is indulging in West’s clever-clever new term: “ethnic chauvinism”.

Oh, and just for the record, before this becomes very boring indeed, I’m not “accusing” West of racism. I am merely accusing him of having spectacularly weird priorities.