Streeting offends huge numbers of Liverpudlians with ‘antisemitic abuse’ comment – then implies only idiots would think that’s what he meant
Centrist Ilford North MP Wes Streeting decided it would be a good idea to leap into the dispute over Wavertree Labour members’ planned – and then withdrawn – motions of no confidence in MP Luciana Berger with a comment on Twitter that large numbers of Scousers considered a gross insult:
Local man Jeff told this blog:
So, if the city of Liverpool isn’t antisemitic, why would Wavertree CLP be any different. He said, ” She could walk through streets of Liverpool singing oh Jeremy Corbyn and would still receive anti-Semitic abuse,” what does that mean, if it’s not a slur on the people of Liverpool?
Judging by the chatter in Liverpool and related online groups, the offence is real and widespread.
I haven’t said the city of Liverpool is antisemitic, which should be clear to anyone unless you’re an idiotWes Streeting
The SKWAWKBOX wrote to Wes Streeting to invite him to comment, retract or apologise. His response was unlikely to pour oil on the waters:
I haven’t said the city of Liverpool is antisemitic, which should be clear to anyone unless you’re an idiot, which probably explains SKWAWKBOX’s confusion. Please be sure to publish this comment in full, so that swampbox readers are clear where I stand on this.
Published in full as requested. But this raised an obvious question about where Streeting ‘stands on this’, which the SKWAWKBOX put to him:
That’s certainly how the people of Liverpool are taking it. So are you saying they’re all idiots?
Streeting attempted to deny this by claiming it was only about the SKWAWKBOX – but the statement “should be clear to anyone unless you’re an idiot” clearly suggests a wider significance.
Merseysiders read the comment in the same way. Sonya from Bootle told the SKWAWKBOX:
I’m a Labour party member who joined after we lost the 2015 Election because in Liverpool we believed that the fight for the most vulnerable in our society is not over. Is that what an idiot does?
One local, who asked not to be named, said:
Liverpool has been through so much and now this. We’re not taking this crap.
Many of the responses, while full of famous Scouse wit, cannot be reproduced – a phenomenon Twitter also experienced:
But references to ‘jobsworths’, arrogance (attached to various epithets) and smugness abounded – along with a memorable comparison of Streeting to a ventriloquist’s dummy couched in a sentence that was otherwise entirely unprintable.
The show of solidarity with the people of Liverpool went across the country, too:
Nor was the outrage in Liverpool limited to the city’s abundant ‘lefties’. One councillor considered to have more ‘moderate’ politics described ‘fuming’ when he heard the comments and told the SKWAWKBOX:
This is just well beyond ridiculous. We’ve got Tories to be fighting and no shortage of things to attack them for and he’s calling us all antisemitic idiots. If a footballer on your team kept insulting his team-mates in public and trying to score up the wrong end, nobody would say the fans were abusing him for wanting rid.
What a t*t.
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