Letter: Bigots of Dover

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The Independent Culture
Sir: As a lifelong resident I am only too aware of the bigoted and racist views of the people of Dover, whether the young who openly support the BNP rallies or the middle-aged who worry about the depreciation of house prices.

I thank David Aaronovitch for his honest, perceptive and brave article (18 August) in which he correlates the recent trouble between asylum seekers and local people with narrow-mindedness and prejudice .

Gwyn Prosser MP (letter, 23 August) may not favour blaring headlines that portray Dover in an unhealthy light, but there was nothing subtle about the headlines that routinely held front page in our local paper and there was nothing subtle about the BNP marches that routinely paraded along Dover seafront.

How sad that even after months of talks with governmental ministers no decisive measures were implemented to prevent this incident. What is even more disturbing is that I depend on the continued coverage by the national press and in particular The Independent to maintain an honest debate.

I implore Mr Prosser to encourage the view that differing cultures and social groups can enhance a community. Please do not sweep the refugees from the town in the hope of sweeping the problem under the carpet.

EMMA WHELAN

Dover, Kent

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