Scotland’s Response To Katie Hopkins’ Hate
All decent minded people were shocked and horrified at the murder of 6 year old Alesha McPhail in the early hours of Monday morning. The fact it happened in Rothesay on the island of Bute, a place most Scottish people associate with summer days out and the last place you would expect bad things to happen intensified that.
But there was one person who saw this not as a tragedy but as an opportunity to further their hateful agenda. That person was, of course, right wing Uber-troll Katie Hopkins.
Hopkins immediately sought to link the murder of this little girl with the fact that, in 2015, 24 refugee families from Syria settled on the island. There is absolutely no reason to think any of these individuals was in any way responsible for this crime. Hopkins then posted an article implying a correlation between the arrival of the refugees and a 29% increase in sex crimes. At first glance this might seem a worrying and compelling statistic but upon closer inspection it falls apart for several reasons.
1. The statistics apply to Argyle & Bute Council, an area that encompasses over 80,000 people of which the island of Bute makes up barely 8% of the population.
2. The relatively large percentage rise between the two years quoted is mainly due to an unusual reduction in the first year, and over a wider period of time numbers of sex crimes have remained relatively constant.
3. The time period she quotes the refugee families didn’t actually arrive until the very end of the year and the vast majority of these crimes were committed before their arrival.
As an island with a falling population, the settlement of Syrian families has been an overwhelmingly positive thing for Bute. Upon their arrival locals ran welcoming committees to help what must’ve been a difficult transition from Damascus to Rothesay. There may have been trepidation from some local people initially but that seems to have subsided and three years on former Refugees have opened a barbershop and a patisserie on the island.
Today a graffiti artist summed up the feelings of Scotland rather succinctly:
We at Left Ungagged would like to echo that sentiment and categorically state that Scotland Welcomes Refugees and we agree that we would like Katie Hopkins to GTF.