A leading Tory MP announced he will refuse to partake in the Black Lives Matter inspired ‘unconscious bias training’ in the House of Commons.
Former vice-chairman of the Conservative Party and MP for Mansfield, Nottinghamshire, Ben Bradley said that the move to introduce the training was a signal of how groupthink has infected the metropolitan elite in London, including “the BBC, the British Library, or even government departments”.
“This particular idea, that we all need to be re-educated and taught to suppress our innate urge to be awful to each other all the time, is costing the taxpayer a bomb as it rolls through our various government agencies and quangos. Next, it’s the turn of MPs to be told that all of our thoughts are offensive and should be corrected,” Mr Bradley wrote in Conservative Home.
“Let me be clear right from the off; I will not be taking it,” Bradley pronounced.
The Tory MP said that he felt the idea of elected politicians being “educated” on the propper opinions to hold is undemocratic, questioning: “Who gets to decide which issues or views are appropriate for me to raise on behalf of my constituents?”
Mr Bradley said he has faced accusations of sexism and racism for raising the issues facing working-class white boys in his community. “If it causes offence to a handful should I keep quiet?” he queried.
“The biggest issue filling my inbox is illegal immigration, something thousands of my constituents feel very strongly about, but it’s a bit controversial, isn’t it, so should I leave it alone? The thought police will be the death of open debate and stymie our democracy,” he warned.
In contrast to Bradley, some in the House of Commons have already mouthed the rhetoric of unconscious bias training, proclaiming their inner racism, in statements reminiscent of the struggle sessions during Mao Zedong’s Cultural Revolution in communist China.
“I am guilty of thinking it’s enough that I don’t make racist comments or actively discriminate. I am guilty of expecting that black colleagues will explain everything, rather than seeking out the answers myself… I am sorry,” said Emily Baldock, Parliament’s Deputy Head of Security.
Clerk of the House of Commons, John Benger added in: “I recognise the power, privilege and responsibility that comes with my position. I pledge to use this to tackle racism, remove barriers and work for a more diverse and representative House of Commons. I will also continue to listen, self-reflect and be an ally for black and ethnic minority colleagues.”
While Bradley acknowledged that there are forms of prejudice in society, the Tory MP rejected the notion that there is any proof that forcing politicians to sit through re-education sessions will do anything, “apart from big profits for the training company.”
He pointed to a report of a £7,000 British taxpayer-funded bias training session for MPs, which featured a blue “Cookie Monster-Esque” puppet, which told elected officials to refrain from using allegedly offensive terms such as “pensioner” and “lady”. The company responsible for the session has reported having already raked in some hundreds of thousands of pounds in taxpayer money.