The General Teaching Council (GTC) controversially cleared a BNP teacher of racism after he posted comments online referring to immigrants as “savage animals” and “filth.”
Adam Walker, a teacher and member of the BNP resigned in 2007 after accessing a far-right chat room during lessons. Thirty-nine year-old Adam Walker, of Spennymoor, County Durham, accessed a far-right wing chat room during a lesson and posted critical comments against asylum seekers, immigrants and Muslims.
Walker resigned from his job at Houghton Kepier Sports College, Houghton-le-Spring, near Sunderland, after admitting using a school computer to access a discussion forum about the BNP. He was defended by the BNP who planned a demonstration in Birmingham City Centre where his future as a teacher was to be decided.
Despite Walker’s clear usage of racial references in his referral to immigrants as “savage animals” and “filth”, the three-member GTC committee meeting in Birmingham cleared him of racism, allowing Walker to apply for further teaching jobs in the future.
The GTC committee said that they were not satisfied that Walker’s views, which included saying that Britain had become a “dumping ground for the filth of the Third World”, were suggestive of intolerance (BBC: Tuesday, 25 May). Instead, Walker was found guilty of misconduct for using a laptop during lessons.
The chairwoman of the GTC committee, Angela Stones said, “The committee does not accept that references to ‘immigrants’ are of themselves suggestive of any particular views on race.” A peculiar conclusion as Walker’s references to immigrants and people from developing countries as “savage animals” and “filth” are clearly racial slurs.
Making racism legal
What the GTC committee has clearly done is given a licence for racists and racism to flourish in British schools. Racism is now in fact legal.
In March 2010, a team reviewing race relations policy in schools for Children’s Secretary Ed Balls caused controversy when they consulted white extremists such as members of the National Front and the decision was made to allow members of far-right racist organisations to teach.
Maurice Smith, the former chief inspector of schools who led the inquiry, and an official from the Department for Children, Schools and Families, said that there was no relationship between racist behaviour and membership of a racist organisation. (Read Racist teachers allowed to teach) Would Smith had drawn the same conclusions if the teachers in question were Muslims and had belonged to Muslim organisations? The answer reveals the contradictions in race relations in this country.
Would the GTC committee have cleared a Muslim teacher if he had posted comments on a Muslim website referring to white people in Britain as “savage animals” and “filth”? Or said that the Muslim countries had become a ‘dumping ground for the filth of the Western World’? It is unlikely that a Muslim teacher could get away with these comments and very unlikely that the GTC committee would be unsatisfied that these comments were not suggestive of intolerance.
If a teacher had referred to women, gays or Jews as “filth” would that teacher be cleared by the GTC committee and allowed to teach? Again, readers can draw their own conclusions.
The evidence is overwhelming, the GTC and the government have clearly protected racists and the freedom of white speech whilst outlawing any dissenting speech from black and minority ethnic communities on issues such as Iraq and British foreign policy overseas; and it has to be asked, where is the Equality and Human Rights Commission now when crucial issues such as this needs to be addressed?
While it is fine for children from black and minority ethnic backgrounds to be taught by teachers who belong to white nationalist organisations what are the chances that white parents would put up with their children being taught by black nationalists or Muslim nationalists? The double standards are considerable.
The ruling by the GTC committee clearly legitimises racism.
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