Jeremy Corbyn’s opponents in the Labour Party – and in the Establishment – are trying to manufacture a scandal out of a comment Corbyn made in response to artist ‘Mear One’s complaint in a Facebook post that his mural on a London wall was about to be painted over by the local council.
Mear One, whose real name is Kalen Ockerman, did not mention in his post the reason why the mural was to be painted over, but stated a concern about freedom of expression – which Corbyn’s comment made clear was the trigger for the response:
Why? You are in good company. Rockerfeller destroyed Diego Viera’s mural because it includes a picture of Lenin
Corbyn has apologised for the comment, acknowledging that he should have looked more closely before commenting – but of course, many of his opponents have dismissed the apology.
What many observers might not have realised, however, is that Corbyn’s comment misspells both names it contains.
The Huffington Post’s coverage of the controversy marks the two names with [sic], indicating that they are merely reproducing an incorrect original.
But does anyone really think that Jeremy Corbyn – a politician of decades of commitment to socialism and of criticism of predatory capitalism – would, under normal circumstances, really misspell both the name of a hugely-famous Trotskyite artist and the name of one of histories most famous ultra-capitalists?
He might, of course, misspell them – or miss his phone’s auto-‘correction’ of the names to versions that are wrong – if he was posting in a hurry or while distracted.
Exactly the sort of situation where you might, for argument’s sake, post a comment on the imminent destruction of a mural without checking properly what the topic of the mural was.
Corbyn’s voting record in Parliament – and his history of continuous campaigning outside Parliament – for justice and against antisemitism and racism are, of course, the concrete, unimpeachable proof that even the suggestion of antisemitism is nonsensical.
But even the circumstantial evidence tallies perfectly with Corbyn’s explanation of the comment and the terms of his apology.
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