I tend to agree with Simon Maginn, who has tweeted the following:
“An MBE is nothing like enough for the humanitarian colossus that is Rachel Riley. Her image should be projected onto the moon for all eternity, so we can see her at night as well and offer our tearful prayers of gratitude for her selflessness and wisdom.”
But my agreement is only because I know he’s being sarcastic.
She’s receiving this award, it seems, for work in raising awareness of the Holocaust and combating anti-Semitism.
But The Independent adds the following to its report:
“She was a vocal critic of Labour’s handling of alleged antisemitism within the party and condemned Jeremy Corbyn’s conduct while leader.”
Is the implication, then, that she is receiving her MBE for stating without any evidence that “Jeremy Corbyn is a racist endeavour” (as she did on a t-shirt, using an image without the consent of the photographer, who took action against her for it*), along with other accusations against the former Labour leader?
In fact, there is no evidence at all that Jeremy Corbyn was or is anti-Semitic or indeed racist in any way, as a BBC presenter admitted on Radio 5 Live, on January 12, 2022.
She said: “There is absolutely no evidence that the leader of the Labour Party at that time – Jeremy Corbyn – was or is anti-Semitic. He had to deal with allegations of that within his party but there is nothing to suggest that he himself as an individual was … I want to emphasise: there is no evidence for that at all.”
Funders of my CrowdJustice campaign and readers of Vox Political will be aware that Ms Riley took me to court for defending a young girl who challenged her claim that Mr Corbyn was an anti-Semite, and the High Court found in her favour, despite the lack of any evidence to support what she had said about the former Labour leader.
I have no objection to her being recognised for raising awareness of the Holocaust, if she has significantly increased such awareness here in the UK.
But I am still trying to finish paying my legal bill for the court case she brought against me so, if you agree that there was no basis for her claims against Jeremy Corbyn, please do one or several of the following:
Make a donation via the CrowdJustice page. Keep donating regularly until you see the total pass the amount I need.
Email your friends, asking them to pledge to the CrowdJustice site.
Post a link to Facebook, asking readers to pledge.
On Twitter, tweet in support, quoting the address of the appeal.
And don’t forget that if you’re having trouble, or simply don’t like donating via CrowdJustice, you can always donate direct to me via the Vox Political PayPal button, where it appears on that website. But please remember to include a message telling me it’s for the crowdfund!
I’m not laying any blame on Ms Riley for the way this has been reported. I don’t have any information suggesting she asked The Independent to include the material about Jeremy Corbyn in its report.
But what she said about him when he was the Labour leader was not supported by any facts and the public should be reminded of that.
*I am reminded that it has been said that Ms Riley did not herself make, or cause to have made, the t-shirt; she just wore it. Nevertheless, it seems clear that she agreed with its sentiment.
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