‘Churchill was an imperialist racist’: Piers Morgan clashes with professor live-on-air
TV presenter Piers Morgan has clashed on air with a professor over the academic’s claim that Winston Churchill was an “imperialist racist.” Morgan said he won’t be told “to feel ashamed of this country.”
Morgan lashed out at Professor Kehinde Andrews’ assertion that Britain was a country “built on racism” that had ruined the world. The broadcaster labelled the attack “baloney.”
Professor Andrews, an academic in Black Studies at Birmingham City University, told an intransigent Morgan on his breakfast show Good Morning Britain: “[Churchill] was someone who believed the white race was superior, the natives didn't have any right to their lands in the Americas, the Indians were a ghastly people and was just a general imperialist racist.”
'The history of this country is built on racism' says Professor Kehinde Andrews attacking the UK's past actions. He says the UK has ruined the world and that it is a racist country, built on racism. He went on to call Winston Churchill one of the roots of the problem. pic.twitter.com/5KPunw8WdG— Good Morning Britain (@GMB) October 9, 2018
The academic then insisted that Churchill's views on India “were so extreme, they couldn't be separated from Hitler's,” quoting Leo Amery, the secretary of India during the early-to-mid 1940s.
Morgan hit back: “If it hadn’t been for Winston Churchill - hey we all have flaws - I think we probably wouldn’t have had the stomach to take on Hitler.”
The culmination of the heated debate ended with Morgan telling Professor Andrews: “I'm not going to be told to feel ashamed of this country just because you say we are a bunch of racists.”
The altercation prompted debate among social media users on Twitter, with some rejecting the notion Britain was inherently racist and instead blamed narrow-minded individuals. While others told how they, as people of colour, in today’s Britain, receive racist abuse.
And that shouldn’t happen. Unfortunately racism exists in all countries of the world. The U.K. is one of the most welcoming non racist countries in the world, that’s why so many people want to come live here.— Andrew Aldana (@andrewaldana1) October 9, 2018
I noticed this too. It's sad that my community do not like to get involved in topics like this. But after reading the comments, I can understand why. I do not agree with all of Kehinde's views, but I do still experience racism every now and then in the uk.— Toyin O (@toymos1) October 9, 2018
A lot of white people in these comments are super triggered and I get it. The fruits of their ancestors crimes against humanity are so sweet it would be hard to let go. Much easier to pretend it's all gone, so guys let's not disrupt their world with too much truth.— Ola (@olathecomedian) October 9, 2018
Where did he get his qualifications.....if it was not for our forefathers this country he would not have had the opportunity. Even if it is going down the tubes now— gillian herbert (@herbertgp56) October 9, 2018
If it wasn’t for the forefathers of millions of Indians, Africans and Asians your nation would have been destroyed. Indians had millions killed fighting for Britain while they were having their wealth extracted by the British empires colonial pursuits.— Nick (@NickSMartin4) October 9, 2018
While Churchill has passed into history as a fearless prime minister who vehemently opposed Nazi Germany, he is also blamed for a litany of imperialist policies that led to the deaths of millions and the continued colonial repression of millions more.
Most notably, Churchill is accused of allowing an estimated 3 million Indians to starve in Bengal when famine struck in 1943. According to Nobel Prize-winning economist Amartya Sen the famine was triggered by Churchill’s decision to transport Bengal-produced grain to British soldiers fighting in Greece, rather to feed the local population.
Churchill rejected calls to supply the starving people, who lived under British rule, saying the population bred “like rabbits” anyway. The wartime leader also refused any offer of aid to the beleaguered Indians from the US and Canada, leading the then British secretary of state in India to compare him to Adolf Hitler.
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