Last month the Labour MP Sarah Champion did something that British liberalism used to do best: she spoke out. In an article for The Sun, Champion claimed that ‘British Pakistani men are raping and exploiting white girls’ by citing an independent report (confirmed by a government report) which connected 1,400 child sexual exploitation cases in the town of Rotherham to British-Pakistani men. In doing so, however, Champion caused outrage among certain sections of the Labour Party, and she was forced to resign from the Shadow Cabinet. Whilst the precise extent of Jeremy Corbyn’s role in her resignation is unclear, he did accuse The Sun of ‘Islamaphobia’ on Facebook.
Champion’s wording could have been cleaner, as she herself has recognised. But her point was not ill-founded; indeed, it was necessary. That level of sexual exploitation in one town alone is a shocking revelation, and it is one that has been proven through independent investigation. It therefore begs the question as to why the current Labour leadership is uncomfortable confronting the evidence. Mrs Champion is not a racist and is not an Islamaphobe – she is merely doing her job to correct the wrongs in her constituency. If one particular ethnic group is responsible, as the evidence suggests, then this is a problem which defies political correctness.
But for as long as Labour rejects facts in favour of politically correct sound bites it will let down the citizens of the UK. The fact is that North Korea is, as we speak, testing nuclear weapons, but Labour wishes to abolish the UK’s nuclear deterrent. The fact is that Britain voted to leave the European Union and all its ancillary institutions in 2016, but Labour has called for the UK remain in the Single Market, the Customs Union and the European Court of Justice. The fact is that a large number of British Pakistani men are perpetuating child sexual exploitation, but Labour, Sarah Champion aside, turns a blind eye.