As the far right extremist group Britain First continues to play up and raise the temperature about marching in Rotherham, community activists have come out and have suggested that extremist groups should not be allowed to destabilise community relations in the town, some of which have been tested after the recent grooming scandals.
We have highlighted how Rotherham has become the touchstone for extremist groups as they hype up their demonstration. We have also highlighted the way that Britain First have blamed South Yorkshire police about changing their route on Saturday the 5th of September. It seems that after the killing of Mushin Ahmed and the history of what has taken place in the town, ensuring peace in the town is of no concern to Britain First.
We have therefore asked some community activists in Rotherham what their thoughts are on the inflammatory actions of Britain First. We have kept their details confidential for fear of reprisals from far right sympathisers and activists.
“The right to protest is a fundamental human right, linking to the freedom of speech ensured to us all living in a pluralist democratic society.
However, I question that right, when it is abused and used to spew hatred, to further break down a cohesive community and even lead elements of a community to become fearful, due to the harm created by such protests and demonstrations.
I further question whether, it is in the interests of the people of Rotherham? To continuously March and demonstrate within a town, force ordinary hard-working people to close their businesses in times of austerity, whilst attempting to indoctrinate people to turn neighbour against neighbour!
I have lived in Rotherham all my life and I have never seen the level of Islamophobia that is now increasing as a consequence of these protests? We have an ongoing investigation, looking at racial hatred as a possible motive to the death of an innocent 81-year-old. To which, disgustingly one of the leading members of Britain’s First suggests is a consequence of the Rotherham grooming scandal. The same leader then wishes to enter the same town, with a group of misguided yobs to blame and vilify the same community of the crimes committed not by them but by vile criminals.”
“We fear that Britain First are not happy until someone seriously gets hurt. We have just seen the death of an 81-year-old and when will groups with vested interests stop using Rotherham for their own political gains?”
“Are such so-called marches going to do any justice for the victims of grooming? The answer is no; let the police and prosecutors do their job on the grooming issues and let the police handle prosecutions on the killing of Mushin Ahmed. Britain First are part of the problem and by no way are they a solution for the people of Rotherham.”