Earlier this month, the world witnessed a group of hockey players from Stirling University chanting sexist songs about miscarriages on camera, while performing Nazi salutes. Other students watched in horror; too afraid to do anything to stop the perpetrators. This is what banter is. It is grossly misogynistic. It is racist. It is hurtful. It is ignorant. It is the vindication that justifies all of these things - all in the name of a harmless joke. And it needs to stop.
Rahman tries to claim that only he and those who support him have stood up to the EDL and other racist groups so that he can attack anybody who challenges his policies as implicitly racist. The puerile nature of this argument would be laughable were it not so dangerous - it isn't just the right-wing that can stir up community division.
What groups that call for tackling the use of such words constantly fail to realise is that, over the course of time, language changes. Just as gay used to mean someone filled with joy or happiness, it has changed to refer to homosexuals and to describe something in a negative way. Language evolves with society.
Students who "blacked up" as the Jamaican bobsleigh team, made famous by the film Cool Runnings, have apologised saying they were "not aware" they wer...
As we go from day to day yelling at one another over what is acceptable to wear and what is acceptable to say we engage in an invaluable part of our society. To have ourselves heard does not always have to mean by the government or by a bureaucratic state, it can just mean being heard by those we're talking to; the people who have betrayed common sense...
Just as Black History Month draws to a close, I speak with the charmingly committed Sentain about why the Stephen Lawrence Charitable Trust is a charity with a difference, why providing young people with relevant skills holds the key to their future and the trust's famously effective collaboration with the business world.
Given the opportunity to clearly condemn attacks against Muslims, she repeatedly refused to do so. Instead she generalised by saying she condemned all violence and hatred. She has moral authority like no other person in Burma. When she speaks, people listen. If she strongly condemned attacks on Muslims it would make a difference.