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INTERNATIONAL AFFAIRS -
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MAYOR OF LONDON SUSPENDED

Posted in the database on Saturday, February 25th, 2006 @ 16:58:08 MST (1357 views)
by Malcom Lagauche    Lagauche Is Right  

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This is a new one. London’s mayor, "Red" Ken Livingstone, has been "suspended." How the hell can a mayor be suspended?

According to Al-Jazeera News in an article called "Livingstone Suspended Over Nazi Jibe," published on February 24, 2006:

Ken Livingstone, the mayor of London, has been suspended for four weeks for bringing his office into disrepute by comparing a Jewish reporter to a Nazi concentration camp guard.

David Laverick, chairman of the Adjudication Panel for England, the disciplinary panel which ruled on the case, said, "His treatment of the journalist was unnecessarily unsensitive and offensive."

The suspension is effective from March 1.

Let’s get a little background of the dastardly offense that cost Livingstone a month’s pay. The group Associated Newspapers publishes several newspapers in Britain, including The Evening Standard, The Daily Mail, and The Mail on Sunday. In the 1930s, The Mail took a pro-Nazi stand on some issues of the day.

Today, nobody would state that the publications are pro-Nazi, but these newspapers have not been kind to Ken Livingstone. In fact, they have hounded him constantly during his tenure as mayor.

In February after a reception for the gay and lesbian community, a reporter from The Evening Standard approached Livingstone for a comment. The mayor, visibly upset at the coverage the paper had given him in the past asked the reporter if he was a "German war criminal." The scribe, Oliver Finegold, then told Livingstone that he was Jewish, to which Livingstone replied, that Finegold was "just like a concentration camp guard."

It may have been crass, but Livingstone displayed his surprise of a Jewish person working for a publication with a pro-Nazi past. Some favored Jews were chosen to guard the masses in the camps, much like white slaveowners in the Old South of the U.S. picked a slave to work in the house and report on slaves who had the audacity to complain about their plight in life. This figure has been referred to as the "house nigger." Another term used to describe a black in the U.S. who sells out other blacks is "Uncle Tom."

Basically, Livingstone called Finegold an Uncle Tom, except in the terms of religious background, not a racial designation.

Harry Belafonte went on nationwide radio before the illegal March 2003 invasion of Iraq and called Colin Powell, then U.S. Secretary of State, a "house nigger." Hugo Chavez has called Bush "a pubic hair" in public. A few weeks ago, Fidel Castro, in describing a special U.S. Congressional committee set up to carve Cuba into various sectors after his death, "a bunch of shit-eaters."

Bush & Co. have called Castro and Chavez quite a few despicable names. They dislike the Latin American tag team that is re-shaping South America, yet I doubt they would call for the suspension of Chavez or Castro.

In my last column, I stated the David Irving was dealt a bad hand with his three-year sentence in jail in Austria. I received some heat for that, but the naysayers brought up some of Irving’s political views that some construe as extremely pro-Nazi. I did not advocate Irving’s political views. I stuck up for his right to be dealt with fairly.

Livingstone has no bigoted skeletons in the closet. He has been a relentless worker for minority rights for decades. Therefore, one can not use any of his past as an excuse for suspending him. His statement to the reporter was actually mild compared to many statements U.S. and British officials use in describing their opponents.

Something is amiss in the current era of political correctness. The current governor of California, Arnold Schwazeneger can grope the breasts of several unwilling women, yet not be held accountable. He can drive a motorcycle and get in an accident, yet have no legal driver’s license for a motorcycle and not get fined. But, Ken Livingstone can question a reporter’s allegiance to a conservative publication and be suspended from his job.

Bizarre.



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