Heads up: Top comment and controversy

Poll: Is Ukip a racist party?

 

Ever since Ukip burst onto the political scene, a growing list of its members and supporters have been accused of racism. But does this mean Nigel Farage and his merry band of predominantly white men are all nasty nationalists?

It's unclear what polling data the party has been looking at recently, as they seem to be playing very strongly to the UK's “racist” demographic. Politicians will say anything to get elected, right?

Although in this case, many of Ukip's members actually seem to be speaking from their hearts.

Like William Henwood, a Ukip candidate for Enfield, who got the ball rolling on Tuesday by saying that Lenny Henry should “emigrate to a black country”.

Or the Lewisham candidate Matt Pavey, who said that the murder of Stephen Lawrence gained too much media attention.

There was also David Wycherley, who described Mo Farah as “African”, and Gary Port who had “liked” the BNP on Facebook. In response to the revelation, Port hit back with a well-measured response, saying “I don't think it's clear whether the BNP are racist.”

Could this all be part of a wider Ukip strategy? Unless their main priority is to win the vote of Jeremy “N” Clarkson, it seems unlikely.

However, there are Ukip supporters who feel genuinely let down by conventional politics; it would be too quick to assume that they're racist, as guilt doesn't always work by association.

Farage himself has defended his stance, and said that he has no problem with Europe or its inhabitants. After all, as he was at pains to mention during his debate with Nick Clegg - his wife is German.

What do you think? Is Ukip racist, or is the party's image just being tarnished by a few badly prejudiced eggs?

@maxbenwellreal

React Now

Read Next
 

i Editor's Letter: The demise of a Sixties monster

Oliver Duff Oliver Duff
A CCTV camera is seen in front of a large poster opposite in central London  

Home Office is creating more powers to turn everyone into suspects – but leave us no safer

Shami Chakrabarti
Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

It's in all our interests to look after servicemen and women who fall on hard times, say party leaders
Millionaire Sol Campbell wades into wealthy backlash against Labour's mansion tax

Sol Campbell cries foul at Labour's mansion tax

The former England defender joins Myleene Klass, Griff Rhys Jones and Melvyn Bragg in criticising proposals
Nicolas Sarkozy returns: The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?

Sarkozy returns

The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?
Is the criticism of Ed Miliband a coded form of anti-Semitism?

Is the criticism of Miliband anti-Semitic?

Attacks on the Labour leader have coalesced around a sense that he is different, weird, a man apart. But is the criticism more sinister?
Ouija boards are the must-have gift this Christmas, fuelled by a schlock horror film

Ouija boards are the must-have festive gift

Simon Usborne explores the appeal - and mysteries - of a century-old parlour game
There's a Good Girl exhibition: How female creatives are changing the way women are portrayed in advertising

In pictures: There's a Good Girl exhibition

The new exhibition reveals how female creatives are changing the way women are portrayed in advertising
UK firm Biscuiteers is giving cookies a makeover - from advent calendars to doll's houses

UK firm Biscuiteers is giving cookies a makeover

It worked with cupcakes, doughnuts and macarons so no wonder someone decided to revamp the humble biscuit
Can SkySaga capture the Minecraft magic?

Can SkySaga capture the Minecraft magic?

It's no surprise that the building game born in Sweden in 2009 and now played by millions, has imitators keen to construct their own mega money-spinner
The King's School is way ahead of the pack when it comes to using the latest classroom technology

Staying connected: The King's School

The school in Cambridgeshire is ahead of the pack when it comes to using the latest classroom technology. Richard Garner discovers how teachers and pupils stay connected
Christmas 2014: 23 best women's perfumes

Festively fragrant: the best women's perfumes

Give a loved one a luxe fragrance this year or treat yourself to a sensual pick-me-up
Arsenal vs Borussia Dortmund: Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain celebrates century with trademark display of speed and intuition

Arsenal vs Borussia Dortmund

The Ox celebrates century with trademark display of speed and intuition
Billy Joe Saunders vs Chris Eubank Jnr: When two worlds collide

When two worlds collide

Traveller Billy Joe Saunders did not have a pampered public-school upbringing - unlike Saturday’s opponent Chris Eubank Jnr
Homeless Veterans Christmas Appeal: Drifting and forgotten - turning lives around for ex-soldiers

Homeless Veterans Christmas Appeal: Turning lives around for ex-soldiers

Our partner charities help veterans on the brink – and get them back on their feet
Putin’s far-right ambition: Think-tank reveals how Russian President is wooing – and funding – populist parties across Europe to gain influence in the EU

Putin’s far-right ambition

Think-tank reveals how Russian President is wooing – and funding – populist parties across Europe to gain influence in the EU
Tove Jansson's Moominland: What was the inspiration for Finland's most famous family?

Escape to Moominland

What was the inspiration for Finland's most famous family?