Shallow look at racist far right

TV review: Angry, White and Proud

Shallow look at racist far right

Ian Pattison

Jamie Roberts’ Channel 4 documentary, Angry, White and Proud, claimed to shine a spotlight on Britain’s far-right today. Filmmaker Roberts is worried about the violent threats of newly splintered racist grouplets after the collapse of groups like the English Defence League (EDL) and BNP.

These groups can no longer mobilise thousands to street protests, which is a step back for the far-right. On the other hand we have seen Ukip’s electoral rise.

Jamie Roberts said recently that his documentary is “definitely not in support of what they [the far-right] are doing, I would say the opposite.”

Channel 4 frequently produces controversial programmes about the far-right, often blowing their minuscule support way out of proportion or unwittingly providing their bigoted views a platform.

Little challenge

Roberts admits that the far-right supporters he interviewed “let me film it because they want someone to see what they’re doing,” and simply refers to racist thugs as ‘nationalists’. He can be heard off camera countering some of the ultra-reactionary things he hears, but the whole documentary lacks any serious challenge to the violently racist ideas expressed.

Elsewhere Jamie Roberts has said: “You do wonder if austerity measures have affected these people’s lives.

“This isn’t excusing it, but a lot of places where these groups come from, the cuts have hit hard, social centres have been shut down and things like the bedroom tax – those sorts of things feed this feeling of fear, isolation, powerlessness and despair. As a result, these people find an enemy in the immigrant population.”

However, none of this is featured in Angry, White and Proud.