Is it racist to refer, as he himself does, to President Obama’s “Kenyan-American heritage”? Apparently so according to John McDonnell
Mask slips again. Boris part-Kenyan Obama comment is yet another example of dog whistle racism from senior Tories. He should withdraw it.
— John McDonnell MP (@johnmcdonnellMP) April 22, 2016
Students at Kings College London withdrew a speaking invitation because they found Boris referring to “President Obama’s Kenyan heritage” inappropriate. Yvette Cooper and Chuka Umunna chimed in. The Guardian spluttered indignantly, because Boris wrote “Some said it was a snub to Britain. Some said it was a symbol of the part-Kenyan president’s ancestral dislike of the British empire – of which Churchill had been such a fervent defender”. Here’s what the Guardian itself wrote in 2009 on the same subject:
Nobody accused The Guardian of dog-whistling. Yet the Remainers threw their toys out of the pram over Boris mentioning Obama’s Kenyan heritage in his piece for the Sun last Friday, despite the fact this reasoning was widely echoed elsewhere at the time the Churchill bust in question was originally removed. Boris was just repeating what others have said without remark – could it all just have been a referendum-related kerfuffle to bash the Brexiteer-in-Chief?