Not sure what to make of the whole Question Time thing, it had far too much of X-factor hype about it for my liking. I'm all for challenging and defeating racist bullies but the "hoo ha" sidesteps many of the real issues that are leading to the BNP's rise. Oh and not many of the BNP's supporters watch QT.
In fact the fight against intolerance is a dual strand (at least) firstly the ongoing fight against deep seated prejudice that still sees people kicked to death in our towns for being perceived as different in some way. Be they a Goth couple on their way home from the pub, Gay men out celebrating or a black lad in the "wrong" place. This and all the humdrum prejudice of those we meet day to day (which can be hard to confront when it comes from people that in other ways we like or even respect).
Then there's the support for BNP some of it from racists and bigots but other support is from the benighted and confused; the "what about me" vote. A weird mixture of people's natural parochialism, small town isolation and misdirected socio/economic grievances. When governments have been doling help to all sorts of vested interest (the banks,the hedge funds,those in high tax bands) this group has looked around and thinks they've lost their place in the queue and their bitterness can lead them to BNP. Of course there are people in this situation who don't turn to fascists but who give of themselves to others in their communities in all sorts of ways and maybe it's these people our senior politician should be working with instead of hanging out with billionaires on their yachts all summer.
The problems we face are serious but not insurmountable we do live in a more tolerant country, for instance my friends who teach tell of openly gay schools kids who even though it's not completely problem free feel able to come out at school. This would have been unthinkable when I went to school.
It's not all perfect and we take steps backward as well as forward all the time. We all just have to find the little ways to make a difference, like I say no massive answers from me but if you hear of ways to help let me know.
La Lucha Continua!