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A response to my critics

1 November 2019

12:11 PM

1 November 2019

12:11 PM

I’m not on Twitter so haven’t seen any of the fury and outrage over my piece in this week’s Spectator. But I have been told that there was some. Ripped, as ever, out of context.

There was no hate speech or Islamophobia whatsoever in my piece. None was meant, none intended and none should be taken. It was a very light-hearted series of suggestions about when to hold an election, based upon the silly dispute over the proposed dates for the election. It was patently a joke. I do not really think that students should be drugged with horse tranquilisers and skunk, or sent to a rave on an election day. Nor do I really think that the vote should be held on a day when Muslim people can’t vote. They were very obviously ludicrous suggestions, satirical in manner, about how to reduce the Labour vote by targeting groups which traditionally vote Labour and occasioned by the wrangling over whether the election should be on December 9 or 12 and the reasons for that wrangling.

NOTE FROM FRASER NELSON: If one of our columnists seriously suggested that Muslims and students should be prevented from voting, then of course I would denounce it. It would be a disgusting thing to say. But Rod Liddle wasn’t doing that. He was satirising the wrangle over the two election dates by making deliberately absurd suggestions. At the Spectator, we have writers who disagree passionately with each other: they often make jokes. But this one was too easily misrepresented and should not have been published in the form that it was.


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