Calvin Robinson: You’re allowed to pander to any demographic except the white working class.
JS: One thing in the news, is this idea that at Goldsmiths University black and “POC” students can essentially claim extensions, on their work for “racial trauma”. And they don’t even have to prove it! The announcement tweet actually said something like “without ‘so-called’ evidence”, like they refute the idea of evidence.
CR: I had a debate with a well-known professor of black studies recently, who I’ve debated many times, and he will say “Calvin, you’re talking nonsense, this is all ridiculous, there’s no evidence of this,” and then I provide evidence. And there is evidence: like a recent Education Select Committee report, but they don’t take on board evidence, these woke people, because that counters their point. And it’s all emotive, it’s all emotive rhetoric language, they’re not bothered about evidence, and to use that quote, to say “so-called evidence” just tells you how far they’ve gone; it’s very difficult to debate with someone if you’re not able to take on board evidence. That’s what we should be looking to do in education and in public bodies, we should be looking to be evidence informed in our approach to make sure we’re doing the right thing.
JS: In talking about evidence, it’s become obvious that white working class kids are falling quite far behind their contemporaries but then, when this is mentioned, you have people like Dianne Abbott come out and tell us that it’s not a problem and it’s due to underfunding. But if it was the other way around, obviously, it would be a problem, and it would not be just the funding, it would be systemic racism. What are your thoughts on this, the whole white working class crisis basically?
CR: It gets my goat on this one. I’ve seen people tweeting, some high profile lefties tweeting, saying “how dare you divide students up, based on racial lines? That’s so divisive!” It’s like, wait a minute, you guys have been doing that this entire time, talking about how we need to provide better services for young black kids. But the moment we address white working class kids it’s racist again! This is the problem, this is why white working class kids are falling so far behind; because you’re allowed to pander to any demographic except the white working class. Personally I don’t think we should be putting kids into any demographic, I think we should be looking at treating kids equally and raising expectations for all young people, regardless of where they’re from. I think this is what I mentioned earlier, the soft bigotry of low expectations. It is a real problem. I think, treating kids, definitely giving them… giving them special treatment or making excuses for them, it is detrimental to their education.
In our culture it’s not a race issue, because black African kids were excelling through our primary school and secondary school systems, and are twice as likely to be going to university, yet white working class British kids and black Caribbean kids are both at the bottom of the league table, and that tells me what’s going on there is probably something to do with the family structure. Now we’ve got issues with fatherlessness in this country that we’re not allowed to talk about because, again that’s considered racist.
But if we look at the demographics, that are doing really well in school, they tend to be new immigrant families that come over here with a strong family structure and I’m a firm believer in education as a tool for social mobility to improve life chances for the next generation. We’ve lost that in our British culture.
JS: What in your mind can be done to combat rising divorce rates, declining marriage rates, increased fatherlessness and so on?
CR: Well, I think we’ve watered down our values again. We’re always looking to cause the least offense, always afraid of cause and effect so rather than supporting families and encouraging families at all. We don’t want to be seen to be looking down on single parent families and stuff like that, and of course we don’t; of course, we want to support single parents, where we can, but that doesn’t mean we should stop encouraging stable family structures which are vital. They are fundamental to any healthy society, and this is why whenever there’s been communist regimes, the first thing they’re gone for is the family unit, because you break down that and you’ve got power over the individual.
So what we need to do is have a renewed emphasis on family life, and if that means incentivizing, whether it’s fiscally or ethically the family structure, that’s what we need to do, or we need to tell people you know it’s actually okay encourage 2.4 kid families with two parents at home.
Photo provided by Calvin Robinson.