Earlier this week, Labour Vision ran a non-scientific Twitter poll with the question, ‘Is @UKLabour a safe space for Jews?’ Respondents were invited to answer either ‘Yes’ or ‘No’.
We should apologise, in the first instance, for running this poll on Shabbat. This was an editorial mistake we will not repeat. We are sorry for any offence caused.
The poll ran for 24 hours. For the first 20 hours, a large majority of respondents answered ‘No’ to the question. Then, with time running out, the poll attracted the interest of a group of respondents who were seemingly hostile to the basic premise of the question, i.e. that Labour might not be a safe space for Jews.
A handful of the conspiracy theories that were put forward are re-published here:
Votes cast – 1,136
‘Yes, Labour is a safe space for Jews’ – 57%
‘No, Labour is not a safe space for Jews’ – 43%
Labour Vision draws two worrying conclusions from this:
1. This was not a referendum on whether Labour was a safe space for Jews. 43% of random Twitter users regard a mainstream political party as an unsafe space for Jews – that is horrifying. The fact that 57% from the same random sample take a different view does not invalidate the concern of the 43%. Only if 100% of respondents had answered ‘Yes’ would we be satisfied.
2. The fact that a question such as this prompted anti-Semitic responses from individuals claiming to be supporters of Jeremy Corbyn rather highlights the need for the question to be answered factually. As an FYI, if you want to support Jeremy Corbyn and the Labour Party, parroting anti-Semitic tropes is not the way to do it.
Labour Vision has been asked to take the poll down by people who have been upset by the reaction. Our belief, however, is that if we allow ourselves to be silenced at the mere sound of the enemy’s guns, then we will have already failed in our basic, socialist duty to promote equality for all people, regardless of race of religion.
This website will go on asking difficult questions about allegations of anti-Semitism in the Labour Party. Until we are satisfied that Labour is an entirely safe space for Jews – and indeed all innocent people – we will be relentless, remorseless and fearless in holding the Party’s feet to the fire on this issue.