It would be difficult for anybody in the UK and Europe, to avoid the lurid mainstream media headlines decrying the alleged treatment of a number of migrants, who have been rehoused in the north east of England.
The Telegraph for example had on its front page: “Red front doors on asylum-seeker homes in Middlesborough ‘mark them out for race hate yobs’, the Huffington Post claimed: “Asylum Seekers’ Red front doors to be repainted after G4S blamed for ‘Apartheid’ policy in Middlesborough”, and the Sun chimed in with: “Middlesborough asylum seekers say dog mess and eggs are being thrown at their ‘branded red doors'”.
Some media outlets, including the BBC, have gone even further, by comparing the red doors to the “yellow stars that Jews were forced to wear in Nazi Germany!”
Some emotive words there would you agree?
Words which may lead the reader to believe that the doors of these properties had been deliberately painted red, prior to the arrival of the migrants, in order to single them out and to persecute them.
Would that be a fair assessment?
So what does that say for journalism in this country, when it takes only five minutes into a session of the Home Affairs Committee, to establish that only 59% of the doors of these properties had been painted red – and had been painted that colour for around twenty years?
Are the lurid media headlines just another attempt to garner sympathy and instill a collective guilt in the British population, to try and combat the marked increase in objections, and the unease that a growing number of people are feeling in regard to the numbers of migrants coming into the UK?
“The whole purpose of parliamentary select committees was supposed to be to help inform policy-making. Instead, they have sunk to becoming rather vulgar kangaroo courts used by wannabe barristers of the backbenchers to boost their egos. It took about five minutes at today’s session of the Commons Home Affairs Committee to establish that neither G4S nor Jomast (the landlord that provides properties in Middlesborough for the housing of asylum seekers) have a policy of deliberately painting front doors red in order to help identify the occupants as asylum-seekers. Only 59 per cent of properties in the town occupied by asylum seekers are red, it turns out. Moreover, the doors have been painted red for 20 years – long before they were used to house asylum-seekers”