LETTER : Roll on Budgen's racial nightmare

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The Independent Online
Sir: So Nicholas Budgen ("How long shall we avoid the immigration issue?", 27 March) used to berate Willie Whitelaw with the ultimate Tory castration scenario, namely how would he feel if "Winchester became a 90 per cent Asian school ... Or Trinity College, Cambridge, became an 80 per cent West Indian college". Oh, the horror, the horror!

I don't know how Willie answered but I, as an anti-racist white person with no nostalgic investment in those sadistic hothouses for the next generation of Budgen and Whitelaw clones, would be absolutely delighted. It would mean that the final barriers of race and class in Britain's archaic elite institutions had been shattered - and that we would, at long last, have learnt to see other ethnic groups as a potential resource and benefit to society, rather than a faceless threat. Hopefully too these new Asian and black products of the public schools and Oxbridge would be infinitely less insular and narrow-minded than Budgen and his like.

Sadly Budgen's nightmare won't happen - and he and his smug, male and overwhelmingly white pals will carry on monopolising wealth, privilege and power for a while longer, regardless of who wins this election.

CARL GARDNER

London NW1

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