Vince: Bigots are not welcome in the Liberal Democrats

You can barely turn on the telly these days without seeing some politician or commentator taking a swipe at a marginalised group. If we think things are bad here, it’s exponentially worse in the US where Pod Save America host Jon Lovett described Fox News in the evenings as wall to wall white nationalism.

So it’s refreshing to see a party leader jump into the middle and say “No. This will not stand.”

Vince, in a piece on the main party website, said:

The Liberal Democrats have always been at the forefront of the fight for equality, and we have a record on these issues of which we’re very proud.

But sadly, the truth is that a very small minority of our own members do hold some views that are fundamentally incompatible with our values.

Our party’s constitution is clear:

We reject all prejudice and discrimination based upon race, colour, religion, age, disability, sex or sexual orientation and oppose all forms of entrenched privilege and inequality.

As a liberal, I respect people’s rights to hold different views to my own, but my message to everyone is that racism, anti-Semitism, Islamophobia, sexism, transphobia and bigotry are not welcome, and not tolerated, in the Liberal Democrats.

And he’s taken a leaf out of the book of Jo Swinson, literally. In her Equal Power, every chapter comes with a to-do list. In true Lib Dem tradition, Vince’s piece comes with 3 suggestions of things we can all do to make our party a more inclusive place:

  • Stand up to prejudice – if you witness any of the issues listed above in this party, please, call it out. You will not find yourself alone – and you will always find allies in our members. You can also report these issues here: libdems.org.uk/complaints-compliments

  • Ask someone from an under-represented group to join the party. We are a stronger political force if we look like the Britain we seek to represent. You can ask someone from an under-represented group to join here: libdems.org.uk/ask-to-join

  • If you know someone who would make a fantastic candidate – and is from an under-represented group, encourage them to stand for election. They can start that process here: libdems.org.uk/become-a-candidate

And he makes a promise:

I promise we will not shy away from this issue, no matter how tough it gets.

You can read the whole thing here. 

 

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9 Comments

  • Mark Blackburn 14th Aug '18 - 7:56pm

    Yay! More of the same please. Strong, clear messaging which clearly defines us and our values to the public.

  • David Evershed 15th Aug '18 - 11:47am

    A very strong point being made about Corbyn’s racist bias at

    https://twitter.com/twitter/statuses/1029675509343547393

  • Neil Sandison 15th Aug '18 - 11:50am

    Well said Vince .This should be practiced by all those involved in selection processes at a local party level .

  • Barry E Lofty 15th Aug '18 - 11:53am

    I agree Mark, a very strong message from Vince Cable more like that would be very welcome in these divisive times!!

  • I agree Mark, a very strong message from Vince Cable more of the same would be very welcome in these divisive times!!

  • Homophobia is not listed there. I always seen myself as a lone voice in challenging racist and homophobic chanting at football matcnes. The new one to rear its ugly head is xenophobia plus as i mentioned before aimed at Vince, ageism.

  • Peter Hirst 16th Aug '18 - 3:30pm

    How we view someone should come from their values and beliefs, not their personality or physical appearance. Even then, it is useful to consider that there might be some truth in these. Best to show compassion as we’re all members of the human race.

  • Peter Hirst 16th Aug '18 - 4:05pm

    The word “bigot” is not well understood. Better to decry discrimination in any form. Also useful to show compassion to those who display intolerance.

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