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Last Updated: Thursday, 22 July 2004, 11:06 GMT 12:06 UK
BNP documentary: Your views
British National Party leader, Nick Griffin
Five West Yorkshire men have been arrested following a BBC documentary on the British National Party.

The undercover documentary saw British National Party activists confessing to racially motivated crimes including an assault on an Asian.

"The Secret Agent," also showed the party's leader Nick Griffin condemning Islam as a "vicious wicked faith".

In an interview, he accused the BBC of selective editing in the documentary and said his full speech had discouraged attacks on communities.

The documentary has also prompted MPs to call for the resignation of four BNP councillors in Bradford, arguing that their election victories last month were gained "by deception".

Did you see the documentary? If so, what did you think? Do the BNP receive fair portrayal in the media?

This debate is now closed. Read a selection of your comments below.


The following comments reflect the balance of opinion we have received:

SUGGEST A DEBATE
This topic was suggested by Zaina, England:
What are people's views on the BNP documentary?

Instead of blindly criticising the BNP maybe for once try to understand the people's fears and reasons for feeling they need to vote for the BNP. Listen for once!
P McCarthy, Bucks

I can't believe that people will stand up for the BNP and call your excellent documentary biased! The footage and the subsequent arrests speak for themselves - the BNP are a disgrace to Britain. I am Irish and remember when the BNP supporters and their infamous Combat 18 came over to Ireland for an Ireland vs England football match in 1995. They ripped out seats and dropped them on the women and children below - and then have the nerve to sing about not surrendering to the IRA on your documentary!
Declan, Surrey, UK

I don't think the BNP did receive a fair portrayal because from the outset the intention was to make the party look bad. If I sent a mole into the Labour party and their spin-doctors I am sure I would find lots of interesting footage, too.
Alex Keel, London, UK

Some people defend the BNP with regard to the fact that we should have freedom of speech. However, for freedom to be maintained, it must have its limits. We must take a strong and clear stance away from the BNP and all that they represent. If that means banning them from the democratic process, then so be it.
Andy Clark, Nottingham, UK

Racism was here a thousand years ago, it will be here a thousand years from now. Unfortunately racism is what humans do. Look back at history, look at wars today the facts speak for themselves. Unpalatable it may be, but it is the truth that laws can never alter fundamental human behaviours.
Danny, Leeds, UK

You cannot meet violence with violence, fear with fear, and hate with hate
Paul

I didn't see the programme but I heard about it and read the article on the website. I can't believe that some people think the BNP are worth supporting. And the what about Abu Hamza comments are pure rubbish. You cannot meet violence with violence, fear with fear, and hate with hate. The only way to beat hate is to not reciprocate.
Paul

To describe the BNP as racist thugs is to underestimate them. I received a BNP leaflet prior to the recent elections and read it out of interest. It was full of juicy sounding statistics and statements that, just for a nano-second, sounded reasonable. Then my brain kicked in and I saw that they were all completely out of context and without any understanding of how statistics work. It was the most manipulative piece of half-truths I have ever read, and I'm not surprised that many people were fooled. Still, there is such a thing as free speech and I think the best way of dealing with their twisted perspective is by reasonable argument, not censorship.
Katherine, London, UK

BNP will flourish as long as the three main parties confuse racism with concern over immigration/integration, and don't address these issues head on.
Caroline Reeves, Wiltshire, UK

In this country we allow Muslim extremists to preach and proselytise, radical communists and socialists to disseminate class hatred and social unrest, animal "rights" terrorists to close down businesses. But let a party represent the views of a large section of white society, no matter how inarticulately or incoherently then the full weight of the supposedly free and unbiased news media (what a joke!) backed up by police action and possibly illegal financial constraints are used without delay. Is it any wonder they got almost 16% of the vote in many areas and reached almost 30% in two council wards. Ignore them and they will go away, persecute them and they will thrive on the free publicity. Have the authorities learnt nothing from their treatment of Sein Fein in NI?
Trevor, London UK

The so called documentary made by the anti-British BBC was a total farce from start to finish. I have been a member of the British National party for a number of years and have never encountered any of the comments made by the BBC. If the BNP views are so disgusting and out of touch with the electorate why are the BBC and the government so afraid to let us air our views? If the public then rejected those views then the BNP would no longer exist. Whatever happened to open debate ?
D Adams, Manchester

The BNP came off in the documentary as a bunch of paranoid, narrow minded, fearful, childish and selfish racists
Andrew, Edinburgh, Scotland
"Islamification of the West" is the one of the most ridiculous things I have ever heard. The BNP came off in the documentary as a bunch of paranoid, narrow minded, fearful, childish and selfish racists. They have their right to free speech, but they do not have the right to petrol bomb TUC vehicles containing anti-BNP leaflets, intimidate, threaten and make racist remarks towards club bouncers in Bradford. How can anyone see them as a legitimate party after one of their council candidates has been recorded talking of his revulsion for democracy and voicing his pathological desires?
Andrew, Edinburgh, Scotland

People are deceived into voting for the BNP? Pull the other one - the voters knew it is a national socialist party and voted for it anyway. But if the BBC was so concerned about the BNP why did they go ahead with the documentary and the right to reply interview on Newsnight? You have succeeded in making Nick Griffin the most credible national socialist politician Britain has seen since Moseley. I hope you are proud of yourselves.
Tom, London

Shock horror! The BNP are a right wing party. What a waste of licence payers money.
Andy Shanks, UK

The more we become over populated by ethnic minorities, the more popular the BNP will become. Why? Simply because the majority of people don't want to be the minority in their own country.
Jim, Chelmsford, Essex

What sort of political party makes those who speak against it live in fear of their lives
Dave Godfrey, Swindon
Does anybody really believe that the BNP are anything but a bunch of racist thugs? The documentary was certainly as interesting as the BNP are vile, but at the end of the day only really showed what surely must be obvious to most intelligent, reasoning people. What sort of political party makes those who speak against it live in fear of their lives, anyway? Seems free speech is a privilege the BNP claims is theirs by right, but only if you agree with what they are saying.
Dave Godfrey, Swindon

One continuously hears the idea that the BNP are a "threat to democracy", yet when they embrace the democratic system and are elected the normally liberal lefties all demand that democracy be set aside and they be removed! A cornerstone of our society is the right to freedom of speech and expression, you cannot take that away from one group and delude yourselves into thinking that others will not follow. The way to tackle the BNP is through sensible debate.
Alec Wood, Hartlepool, UK

I thought you program regarding the BNP was excellent. A lot of people had been under the influence that the BNP are genuine people. The documentary just goes to show what they really are.
Shera Singh, Gravesend - Kent

We slam the BNP as being vile racist thugs. Yet we don't heap nearly as much venom on Abu Hamza, a man with just as repugnant views, lest we are accused of being "Islamaphobic". A clear double standard is operating here.
Philip Le Roux, Hampshire England

I saw the programme and the extended interview with Nick Griffin on Newsnight afterwards. I was very impressed and I will now be joining and supporting the BNP. The programme was organised by a spy from the TUC. The programme was certainly a setup, it was simply propaganda for left wing liberals. The fact of the matter is that the BNP is not a racist organisation but is only characterised as such. The BNP is the only honest political party at the moment. The sad fact is that Islam is a threat to our western way of life, and must be resisted.
Simon Purvis, London

The documentary was totally biased,
Mike, Grimsby, England
The documentary was totally biased, I suggest that the reporter was even too young to produce such a report. Is it the BBC's job to produce such biased political reporting? I don't think so! Why don't the BBC produce a report on the threat of Islam trying to over throw the West and how, when & who is going to stop them?
Mike, Grimsby, England

To give this some balance, why would 800,000 people go out and vote for the BNP? What possible reason could all these people have to feel they have no other option.
AJD, Birmingham

As pleased as I am to see BNP discredited, MP's call for elected BNP members to resign as they "deceived" voters is nonsense as the same allegation can be applied to the majority of mainstream MP's.
Julian, Portsmouth

While I agree that the documentary raised some interesting points, did the BBC have to target Bradford yet again? Yes, there are problems, as there are in any big city, but the constant scape-goating of Bradford does not help the people that live here, it only serves to increase existing tensions. Programmes of this nature are made by people that spend a relatively short spell of time here, then can leave and return to live elsewhere, while the 500,000 people they leave behind deal with the fallout.
Bernadette, Bradford, England

Many of the statements made at the "thinking" end of the party are compelling
Richard, Derby, England
The unfortunate thing with the BNP is that it appears to be full of under educated idiots. Their ideas are confused and the racist ramblings show a high level of ignorance. However, the general premise were it refined and made more intelligent would certainly fit in with many people's idea of what is wrong with our country. Many of the statements made at the "thinking" end of the party are compelling, disturbing and ultimately....true. I think we are sick of political correctness and the left wing media telling us how to live. Let's have a Britain we can be proud of. The BNP however, would have some way to go before they got my vote...my right wing views extend to barring stupid people from having an opinion!
Richard, Derby, England

Haven't we been here before? What have we learned from this documentary? Nothing. Football thugs will be football thugs, right-wingers will be right-wingers and I suppose middle-class liberals will be middle-class liberals and so and so on. Pointless waste of time.
Mark, Brighton U.K.

I feel sorry for the 850,000 or so people voted for the BNP. Now they know the true colour of the BNP and what a waste of vote it must have been for them too!
Raja, Birmingham

Right, so now we have proof that the BNP are unsuitable as a political party, and their "we're not racist" image is but a thin veneer. I would, however, love to see a political party take on the taboo issues of asylum and racial integration both without resorting to racism and without pandering to the politically-correct brigade. Fear of being branded racists made politicians weak and toothless when it comes to race-related issues. Will we ever get serious debate on the matter?
Andrew, Durham, UK

As a member of the Communist party of Britain, I can tell you that we were monitored, investigated and had the full force of the law used against us in the past. Bearing in mind that the BNP constitute a clear and present danger - is it not too much to demand that the security services do the same and use the powers they deployed against us, against the likes of Nick Griffin et al?
Phillip Brand., London, England.

We need to show that we do not agree with racism
Clare, Newcastle
I am in agreement with the many people that have written that they support free speech. However, what about people's freedom to feel safe in their communities? We need to show that we do not agree with racism and that we will not allow people to be abused in this way in our supposedly tolerant country. Unfortunately to ensure this we need to ban the BNP and their right to free speech.
Clare, Newcastle

Well done, BBC, you've just given the BNP all the PR they could ever have wanted. In Holland not so long ago a man by the name of Pim Fortuyn described Islam as a backward religion and months later members of his party were co-forming the new coalition government. The worry for the UK is that the BNP may find a more articulate leader and tone down its more excessive views. It's not sci-fi.
Anais van der Zee, Utrecht, Holland

My children are of dual heritage, all of whom were born within Birmingham - that makes them British. The BNP campaign is "a future for the British children". My children are excluded from this because they have black skin. The BNP need to take a good look at themselves. I don't know of a pure race anymore. Look in the history books at kings and queens etc. We don't need any more ignorance from so-called politicians stirring up racial hatred. The world can be a cruel enough place to live in as it is.
Mrs Marie Duce, Birmingham

Why is everyone so shocked? This has been happening for decades. Racism (against whites or ethics) stays doormat for sometime and rears its ugly head from time to time.
Anon, Surrey

We're supposed to have free speech in this country
John, Ipswich, UK
I think what the government is doing in trying to silence the BNP is far more sinister than anything they say or do. We're supposed to have free speech in this country. The BNP are entitled to hold and express their views.
John, Ipswich, UK

I think its a travesty that a group like this are permitted to have the term British in their title - they are not British, they don't represent Britain.
Anon, UK

The BNP have valid political views, which the liberal left media refuse to discuss. They are frightened that the BNP may be right so they wage war against them to silence their democratic voice.
Paul, Exeter

Nothing I saw was a surprise; we know what these people are like. They should not be given the platform to speak. They only believe in freedom of speech when it suits them, so shut them up! In fact, they should be closed down - made illegal.
Justin Champion, London, England

It is because they are censured and their views dismissed that the BNP are gaining an almost romantic image of the outsiders, the little guys, the anti-politicians. By giving them a platform they will be exposed as the clowns they are,
Matt Ransom, Watford

He would have been in Belmarsh Prison on an anti-terror charge before the programme finished
Habib, Peterborough

I would like to know what the police and David Blunkett have to say about one of the BNP members saying they would like to blow up mosques and machine gun Muslims. If that had been a Muslim saying he would like to blow up Churches/Synagogues and machine gun Christians/Jews then he would have been in Belmarsh Prison on an anti-terror charge before the programme finished.
Habib, Peterborough, England

So after months of expensive secret investigation the BBC come up with an individual who assaults someone, a drunk who makes racist statements and the leader of the BNP who says he does not like Islam. What a waste of my licence fee.
Ian, UK

The documentary makers can be congratulated for showing the BNP leaders in their true colours. Our fathers fought Nazis who believed in the myth of a "master-race" and anyone who believes that the BNP white British bigots represent a superior race or culture in comparison to most immigrants is to be pitied. It is true that bigotry and discrimination exist within other religious and political organisations but what sets the BNP apart is that this is their raison d'etre. At the end of the day most people of whatever colour or religion are just trying to do the best for the future of their families.
Jean Rugg, Edinburgh

I am a 35yr old female from NI, I watched the BNP programme the other night, I honestly thought in living in this Country of Northern Ireland I would never have to see such hate and bigotry again, however watching your programme last night made my stomach physically sick. They made a remark about calling the IRA Scum, correct in saying so, however I have to say they are no better than the IRA, I hope they end up in prison with their IRA chums it's what they deserve.
C Flanagan, Enniskillen Northern Fermangh

Whilst I don't agree that anyone should get away without punishment for racially motivated crimes we do live in a country which prides itself on freedom of speech. Mr Griffin should be allowed to air his views so long as no incitement to racial crimes is made. It is his right to voice an opinion and just because he doesn't happen to agree with Islamic principles does not mean he is being racist. If he was criticising Catholic principles it wouldn't be seen as racist - so what's the difference?
Cath, UK

Let the BNP speak and they will show themselves for what they are
Daisy Thompson, Muncie, USA
Let the BNP speak and they will show themselves for what they are - ruffians with nothing to offer Britain but hate and ignorance. Give Nick Griffin all the airtime he wants - he'll do nothing but unite decent people of all backgrounds against his gang and its views.
Daisy Thompson, Muncie, USA

As a Muslim it was disturbing to see how much hatred some people have towards people who believe in Islam. However you must look at what is behind their hatred. In order for a society such as ours to live in harmony, favouritism must not be given. A white friend of mine was recently told that he would have to wait for another year to join the Police force because they needed to fill their ethnic quotas. With this kind of bias it is little wonder that you will get resentment!
Jamil Hussein, Birmingham UK

A brilliant piece of investigative journalism. It almost ranks alongside the article on BBC news web the other morning that told us the M1 was used by travellers and commuters. You'll be telling us the Earth is round next.
Dave Hough, Nottingham UK

In the interests of fairness will you now do an undercover report on an extremist Islamist group in the UK?
Anon, UK

Why give them air-time or newspaper space at all?
Isla Adele, Belfast, Northern Ireland
Many thanks to Jason Gwynne and the BBC for their courage in making this documentary. However, I wonder what is to be gained by giving these people publicity at all. It is clear the BNP and its leadership positively thrive on any type of media attention. I believe they're very firmly of the belief there is no such thing as negative publicity. So why give them air-time or newspaper space at all?
Isla Adele, Belfast, Northern Ireland

Let us remember that ignorance, intolerance and violence are not the sole preserve of the far right or white Anglo-Saxon Protestants. You only have to look at the past actions of animal rights campaigners and anarchists. Events in Brixton, Bristol, Tottenham, Toxteth etc and race-motivated gangs (whether white/black/Asian) in any big city show political/religious extremism and discontent is alive and well in all communities in this "multi-cultural" utopia. It seems the media is intent on "exposing" only the extreme right - perhaps some of the extreme left could benefit from such attention in order to give a more balanced view and enable people to decide which is the more serious threat.
Andy D, Oxford UK

When a firebrand Islamic preacher visited the country recently, there were calls for him to be banned to prevent him inciting racial and religious hatred. Now that the BNP are caught doing precisely that, some people (including on this website) defend their right to free speech. It would be interesting to know the stance of such people when Abu Hamza was being denied his.
Kola Odetola, Luton UK

I now fully believe everything the BNP claim regarding the BBC's agenda
Craig, Oldham England
After watching the documentary on the BNP I now fully believe everything that the BNP claim regarding the BBC's anti-British agenda. Anyone who was taken in by the obvious tampering of the soundtrack needs their head examining. I for one agree with the comments of Mr Griffin regarding Islam and will increase my efforts to get more support for the party. As for the BBC I will never again believe anything that is said by this anti-white organisation. br />Craig, Oldham England

Let a hidden camera follow Tony Blair and chums around for 6 months and I bet you'll hear a few thoughts and views that wouldn't normally be shared with the public. I thought the documentary offered a very one-sided viewpoint. Much of the footage was of "followers" of the BNP - I'm sure there are followers of the other parties who have been caught up in violence, who have racist views, who drink a lot etc. I was under the impression there was a law which stated that a TV station cannot show bias towards any particular party, which should mean we can look forward to similar "fly on the wall" programmes about the Tories & Labour, can we? It seems that everyone in this country gets up in arms whenever Islam is attacked, but when the boot's on the other foot it just doesn't seem to fit.
Chris, West Yorkshire

To Chris (from West Yorkshire)... It may be that the documentary makers were biased and employed very selective editing. BUT: Nick Griffin was filmed in all his glory inciting racial and religious hatred.
Adam, Halifax,

There's something distasteful about the methods used
Michael, UK
There's something distasteful about the methods used to make this documentary, and even more in the politicised triumphalism with which the BBC boasts about it. One simply can't imagine the BBC taking such an approach say to an extreme Muslim group, nor any other group on the left of the political spectrum.
Michael, UK

We live in a democracy and unfortunately that is the price we pay. I found the programme to show possibly the worst side of human nature - they are not "politicians" but racist agitators. Thoroughly disgusting.
Caroline Erickson, Glasgow

Just as the Muslims should be able to state their views freely in England, so should Nick Griffin. He is entitled to his views, and as this country remains one in which the right of free speech can be exercised I fail to understand what all the fuss is about!
Christopher Wilson, Dartford, Kent

So the BBC has spent thousands of pounds of taxpayers' money to come up with the world-beating exclusive that the BNP is a racist organisation? What next, an in-depth investigation proving that the Pope is, in fact, a Catholic?
Daoud, London

Everyone has a say, so get over it
Gerry Noble, Salisbury, UK
In a democracy everyone has a say, so get over it. Just be thankful that Nick Griffin is allowed to air his views at all.
Gerry Noble, Salisbury, UK

Congratulations to the BBC for broadcasting this brilliant documentary and exposing the BNP as the nasty, vicious bunch of extremists that they are. Against a worrying background of rising and possibly misguided support for the BNP, I particularly applaud your determination to take a stand and expose the truth behind the charade of smiles and respectability that this wicked party has propagated in recent years.
Chris, London, UK

What a one-sided documentary full of provoked statements (in the pub, using alcohol?) Of course the BNP are racist, but this documentary is nothing but a smear, I am looking forward to the BBC documentary about Abu Hamza and his followers.
Matt, Plymouth

These disgusting individuals should be stripped of their nationality and shipped out of our country. I am proud to stand next to English people of all colours, religions united against Mr Griffin and his followers who are clearly nothing but thugs whose intelligence is too minute to be measured.
Brendan MacLean, Birmingham, UK

Let these people stand for election and be humiliated at the ballot boxes
Emma, London
I watched the documentary last night and I think this is an example of why we should retain total freedom of speech in this country. This programme allowed the British National Party to expose themselves as the thoroughly unpleasant organisation they are. Let these people stand for election and be humiliated at the ballot boxes. This is what they deserve. Depriving an entire nation of its democratic rights with extreme political correctness is not the answer.
Emma, London

Incredible journalism delivered with professional precision. The revulsion we all felt shows how far general society in this country has come. The BNP's days are numbered. Well done, BBC.
Tim H, UK

Sadly - but predictably - Nick Griffin is being lambasted for telling the truth. It certainly seems to me - based on the evidence - that Islam is characterised by near-psychotic levels of hatred, and by insensate cruelty. He is fundamentally a good man, trying to warn us of the coming clash. Beyond doubt, time will prove him right.
Jeremy, Edinburgh, UK

I really don't understand how this was an expose. How could anyone not already have known that the BNP party is an organisation of racist thugs? How they are allowed to masquerade as a political party in this day and age is beyond me. I thought we defeated the fascists in the 40s.
Sieffre ap Bryn, Llantrisant, Wales

This is the best publicity that the BNP has had for years. It is very sad but there are plenty of people out there who agree with these people. Seeing BNP activists in their 'true colours' will reinforce such beliefs. They will be encouraged by the fact that BNP activists might not always say what they want to hear due to political correctness and the law, but they certainly think in racist terms.
Anonymous

There is nothing wrong with expressing an opinion about a religion, even if it is a negative one
Michael, York, UK
There's two issues here. Firstly, the BNP have been shown up for the nasty brainless thugs they are. Secondly, Nick Griffin has given his opinion on Islam. Talking about "blowing up Mosques" is clearly out of order, but there is nothing wrong with expressing an opinion about a religion, even if it is a negative one. You have to differentiate between opposition to a set of religious beliefs and hatred of a person because he holds those beliefs. Griffin's view may not be popular, but he is entitled in a free country to hold it.
Michael, York, UK

the programme didn't really surprise me. What does surprise me is that we need a news broadcaster to do what the government/police should have done years ago.
Matt, Chelmsford, UK

Patronising BBC nonsense, attempting to portray the BNP's voters as misled. I am certain that the vast, vast majority of BNP voters knew exactly what sort of a party they were backing. The unpalatable truth for the liberal media is that a significant minority of the British electorate are willing to back a racist, anti-democratic party. Get used to it. This documentary will probably act as a recruitment poster for them. The only good that could come out of it is if Griffin is removed from the scene. Without him, the organisation of the BNP would soon collapse.
C, Warrington, UK

I am not a BNP supporter or voter, but am increasingly sick of the highhanded and scaremongering attitude the BBC takes with a party which receives less than 5% of the vote. You continually hear the phrase 'they are a threat to democracy.' My understanding of democracy is freedom to vote for what you believe in and freedom of speech. The censoring of the BNP election broadcast, the clauses being added to the public order act, and the refusal of the big 3 political parties to accept that people are allowed to vote against the Westminster mafia all seem a greater threat to me.
Paul Copthwaite, Bradford, UK

I am appalled that they can call themselves patriots when all they are doing is trying to tear apart this country
J, London, UK
I am white, British and patriotic. I am proud of my country and Britain's huge potential. I see the BNP as the single biggest threat to the success and security of Britain and am appalled that they can call themselves patriots when all they are doing is trying to tear apart this country that I love. If anybody needs deporting, it's them.
J, London, UK

As a South African, watching this programme gave me shivers up my spine. We thought that a similar group, the AWB - led by Eugene Terreblanche, were a dangerous threat to our democracy about 10 years go. However, like the AWB, this group of sad, angry and pathetic individuals seem to spend more time fantasising about their sick views in pubs drinking beer than anything else. They could never threaten society in any more meaningful way than the odd cowardly assault. Sadly people like this exist in every society. Lock up as many as possible for criminal offences and quietly ignore the rest.
Mark H, London (SA)

The BNP does receive fair coverage, particularly as other political parties and public organisations have been subject to under-cover reporting. This documentary focused on key party figures and candidates who damned themselves with their own words. Even accounting for any level of selective reporting doesn't change the comments made.
B Slater, London

I think the views brought across in that documentary were absolutely disgraceful. Bradford is a fantastic place to live. The multicultural society is an amazing blend of the human race. Muslims are not vicious or wicked. I know many Muslims and none of them are anything like the view the BNP gave. The Islamic faith is about peace. Why do the BNP have a right as a political party to run this country? They are a bunch of yobs and hooligans who hold their meetings in pubs where everyone is holding a pint. It's the BNP that need to be kicked out not the Asians!!
Lucy, Bradford

The documentary stands as a call for freedom of speech
Ian, Bury St Edmunds, UK
I did see the documentary and have to say I was pretty surprised by quite how far people up for being elected as a councillor were willing to profess their hatred. Obviously the BNP has a reputation for racism but I was still a little shocked. However, I do think, perversely, having watched it that the documentary stands as a call for freedom of speech. Who - having watched these people and their posturing - would possibly still want to vote BNP?
Ian, Bury St Edmunds, UK

I was pleased to see the BBC reveal the underlying racial and religious incitement that lines the BNP and would like to thank them for bringing this to light. At the same time I was appalled at the Islamophobic comments, words and actions I viewed from BNP members and the leader himself. It is quite clear that the BNP has a highly inadequate understanding of the faith of Islam - this was clearly illustrated in the fact that Nick Griffin felt he could talk about the Qur'an so freely yet with so little understanding. I would strongly urge him and anyone who listened to his false words to study the TRUE meaning of the Qur'an under guidance of qualified scholars. It is highly unacceptable that anyone should incite such religious hatred and be allowed to get away with it. If that had been a Muslim making those remarks they would have been arrested for being a 'suspected terrorist' by now.
R Chowdhury, UK

I watched the documentary. I was not shocked by what was said. I'm afraid there are a lot of supposedly "decent" people who seem to believe that it is perfectly reasonable to express these views when talking about "non whites". Unfortunately much of the rubbish they spout is taken from the newspapers they read
Roy Sheward, Walsall, UK

Did the undercover report show us anything that we did not already know?
Mark Silvester, London
Did the undercover report show us anything that we did not already know? There is a place for a national party. It's just a pity that in the case of the BNP it has been hijacked and can never now gain any credibility.
Mark Silvester, London

I don't agree with hurting or saying anything that would hurt others but I do see where they are coming from. Immigrants have countries of origin of which they are proud yet it appears that because of immigration we are not allowed to be proud of our country, ethnicity or culture which is totally wrong. This is our country of origin and I feel that there are to many economic migrants from Asia and Africa - unskilled workers which we do not need. Failed Asylum Seekers are not returned to the country of origin so the only option to show discontent is through the ballot box and no other political party offers this choice to the voter.
Carole, UK

Answer to Carole, UK's response... My country of origin is England and I'm proud of being a British Asian. Although I understand your point about voting choices on economic Immigrants, the BNP mix this issue up with racial hatred towards all non-whites, whether they were born in the UK or not!
Anon, England

I watched the documentary. I didn't think it was a particularly well made programme and at times Jason Gwynne evidence seemed a little thin and repetitive. The BNP members came over like a bunch of childish thugs. I wasn't surprised by anything I saw; I was never taken in by the BNP's thin veneer of respectability. I didn't think they were unfairly represented in the programme; I think it was a pretty fair representation of what they stand for. I doubt that very many of the people who voted for them would be put off by what they saw; they were probably privately applauding it.
Judith, Huddersfield

There are extremists on both sides
Jim, Manchester
There are extremists on both sides. You could do the same undercover report into an Islamic extremist group and hear the same racist feelings. It doesn't concern me too much that the BNP exists, but it does concern me when people feel they are not being listened to and end up voting for them in protest. Do the BNP need to be stopped, like the National Front do, like some Islamic extremists do? You can take the point of view that everyone is entitled to air their feelings and put up with it - but then that would give them some kind of credibility, which is simply a cover for a gang of thugs.
Jim, Manchester

A brilliant piece of journalism. I fear that those accused of inciting racial hatred will be let off the hook. Though they have been exposed, they have been given publicity - perhaps even a 'recruiting sergeant' for hardliners?
Asif Givashi, London

Does this really come as a surprise? I would not expect to meet nice, fair minded people at a BNP meeting. Why did the BBC go to all that trouble just to show us something which most of us knew already?
Nash, London, UK

I don't think they do get a fair portrayal. The BNP should be defeated by showing how stupid and repugnant their arguments and policies are. Unfortunately the political left in this country think the answer is to ban or censor anything which doesn't fit their prejudiced view of the world. In a democracy you have to accept that some people will have beliefs and say things with which you don't agree. It will be far worse for our society if we have a situation where a "thought police" control what we are allowed to do, say or think!
John, UK

The BNP must be allowed to air their views however much people disagree with them
Scott, Leeds, UK
Some of the things that were said by BNP members were disgraceful and action needs to be taken against them individually. However, we live in a democratic society and the BNP must be allowed to air their views however much people disagree with them. We all have the choice when it comes to elections and I certainly will show my distaste by not voting for them. I think some of the Labour party's policies are disgraceful, but it doesn't mean they should be banned!!!
Scott, Leeds, UK

BNP members racist? I'm shocked.
Dave Williams, UK

I have been studying and practicing Islam for 29 years now, and have never heard of anything so ridiculous as "Islam has been spread by rape", and " the Koran says all non-Muslim women are legitimate targets for Muslim men". I am sure Mr. Griffin of the BNP - who wouldn't recognise faith if it hit him in the face - knows far more about Islam than I do! Where does the blind, narrow-minded, hate-filled stupidity end???
Safia, A Muslim Woman & Proud Of It, Berkshire

There is such a thing as nationalism gone too far
Shayam, Slough, UK
As last night's documentary shows, there is such a thing as nationalism gone too far. Making ludicrous and false statements about the world's second largest and fastest growing religion; fantasizing about violence; boasting about breaking the law; painting a billion people worldwide with a narrow-minded and hate-filled brush: all of the above point to a party of people that are deeply disturbed and filled with anti-something or the other (usually non-whites). I really believe that it would be undemocratic, not to mention dangerous, to let the BNP exist any longer - it is nothing more than a group of hate addicts who need to be locked away for their own good as well as the good of society.
Shayam, Slough, UK

The inside of the BNP has been long known to be full of thugs and white trash wanting the opportunity to stir up hatred. Their unvoiced policies on ethnic minorities are disgusting, but others I found myself agreeing with, much to my shock. Yes, I do think that immigrants should learn English, and speak it. Yes, I do think paedophiles should be chemically castrated. And yes, I am fully in favour of saying no to the tens of thousands of migrants flooding our island. But the BNP are not the way forward. For strong and decisive action, I think the Conservatives are the party for Britain.
Ed, Sheffield, UK

I am not a supporter of the BNP, but this was a poor attempt at a smear and Mr Gwynne has incited people over alcohol to say shocking remarks. What about an undercover programme to see what is being said by a minority of people in a Bradford Mosque with regard to terrorism.
Alex Davies, London

The only thought in my head as I watched the programme was that their promotion of hatred was no different to that preached by Bin Laden and al-Qaeda. As for their hatred of democracy, it is because of democracy that they have the freedom to say what they do. They disgust me.
Ellie, Hampshire




SEE ALSO:
Going undercover in the BNP
15 Jul 04 |  Magazine
Race position for BNP councillor
09 Jul 04 |  West Yorkshire



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