Ex-UKIP chief advisor mocks police officer for marching at York Pride
A former chief advisor to ex-UKIP leader Nigel Farage has mocked a police officer marching at York Pride on Twitter.
Raheem Kassam, who used to be editor-in-chief of right-wing Breitbart News London, tweeted a video of the policeman marching at the pride, with the caption: “Is it any wonder criminal gangs don’t fear our police anymore?”
The police officer can be seen running over to people eating outside a pub and putting rainbow paint on a woman’s arm, before offering to apply the Pride stripes on a man, who refuses, and posing for photos with bystanders.
Kassam included an emoji with a sad face on his post.
His post has so far been retweeted 1,000 times, and ‘liked’ by more than 2,000 people.
— DavidDunninguk (@daviddunninguk) June 9, 2018
Thousands of people took part in York LGBT Pride on Saturday (June 9), with the parade route running from York Minster to Knavesmire. British R&B group Cleopatra performed at the event.
It was billed as the city’s “biggest ever” Pride.
According to North Yorkshire Police, which was policing the event, just two arrests were made at the event.
A North Yorkshire Police spokesperson said: “York Pride is an important event for the city and also for the local policing teams and we are proud to be involved.
“Attending the event and being part of the day enables the local policing teams to build trust and legitimacy within their localities and also with the LGBT community.
“Officers, staff and volunteers from across the force were involved in Saturday’s event, including our own chief constable.
“All who took part in the event and the officer featured in the video have the full support of the chief officer team.”
PinkNews has contacted Raheem Kassam for comment.
The York branch of the Conservative Party did not take part at this year’s York LGBT Pride, saying that its LGBT members did not “feel safe to return” after facing abuse at their stall last year.
One Tory member explained in York Mix: “Just like the ongoing anti-Semitism from a minority of far left activists which has been shown to the world in recent months, the people on our stall last year – including members of the LGBT community itself – were subjected to such a level of intimidation, nastiness and venom that they now feel it would not be safe for them to return.”
In a statement responding, York LGBT Pride said: “Last year, our event fell a few days after the UK General Election and news had just broken that the (National) Conservative Party was entering into a coalition with the DUP, which has record of not supporting LGBT rights. Northern Ireland remains the only part of the UK and Ireland without marriage equality. This coalition appears to have been the catalyst for the verbal protests that took place around the Conservative stall at York Pride 2017.
“If the LGBT+ community cannot air their dissatisfaction with such a coalition and exercise their right to free speech and peaceful protest at a Pride event, where can they?
“Whilst free speech and peaceful protest are welcome at our event anything more than this such as violence and physical or verbal abuse will not be tolerated.”
In 2012, stage events for York Pride tomorrow were moved following heavy rainfall in the north of England during one of the wettest Junes on record.