Why Is Lenny Henry Not A ‘Racist’?


The BBC have put this on their frontpage about a local council candidate for UKIP:

UKIP candidate William Henwood defends Lenny Henry tweet

“I think if black people come to this country and don’t like mixing with white people why are they here? If he (Henry) wants a lot of blacks around go and live in a black country.”


Along with this:

UKIP candidate’s Lenny Henry tweets spark fresh row



Must be a major news story….will the BBC be covering every ‘controversial’ Tweet by every candidate in local/Euro and then the national elections?  Let’s hope so eh.


Henwood is of course being denounced as a racist.  Why?  All he said was that if Henry wanted to be amongst Black people so much then he should go and live somewhere where that was possible….presumably Birmingham…perhaps Henwood meant to say ‘The Black Country’.

Unsure where the racism on Henwood’s part comes in….he’s just questioning why Henry feels he can’t watch TV if it doesn’t have ‘X’% of black faces on it.


Why, you might legitimately ask, are there is no such outbursts from the Media about Henry’s demands that white people be sidelined from jobs on the basis of their race to make way for Black people on a positive discrimination type of scheme?

Is that not racist?  It is.


And yet Henry gets a bye on that…because he is black and we know that no Black person can be racist (h/t Jo Brand)…and anyway after centuries of white oppression they are entitled to be so, if they so wish.


Remember where that sort of patronising thinking got us:

Police ‘covered up’ violent campaign to turn London area ‘Islamic’

Victims say that officers in the borough of Tower Hamlets have ignored or downplayed outbreaks of hate crime, and suppressed evidence implicating Muslims in them, because they fear being accused of racism.



If Henwood is racist then how about this example:

Smelling the coffee

‘If you don’t like it here, why don’t you leave?’


Who said that?  John Humphrys to Trevor Brooks….who, a double whammy, is both black and Islamic.



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53 Responses to Why Is Lenny Henry Not A ‘Racist’?

  1. Bety Swollocks says:

    Lenny Henry…as funny as piles.


  2. Scott says:

    Unsure where the racism on Henwood’s part comes in

    I don’t doubt you are. But let’s face it, deep consideration has never exactly been one of your strengths, has it?

    Why, you might legitimately ask, are there is no such outbursts from the Media about Henry’s demands that white people be sidelined from jobs on the basis of their race to make way for Black people on a positive discrimination type of scheme?

    Because, instead, it’s been discussed rationally, with an awareness of the genuine issues, rather than a sad little man corralling similarly demented individuals.

    Oh, and finishing off a post with your usual “woooah, if we’re not all afraid of, and thinking of ourselves superior to Muslims, then the world will fall apart”. That’ll get a few more of Biased BBC’s usual freaks salivating.

    But none of them are racists, of course. The fact that so many of them are convinced of their own superiority based on nothing other than their skin colour is a complete coincidence.


    • Stewart says:

      “The fact that so many of them are convinced of their own superiority based on nothing other than their skin colour is a complete coincidence.”
      And your evidence for this?


    • Alan says:

      So you admit reaction to Henwood’s Tweet is irrational and not displaying an awareness of the real issues he raises.

      Very good Scott. You agree he might have a point if only allowed to say it without demented individuals in the media whipping up a faux frenzy.

      I note you don’t deny Henry’s comments might be considered ‘racist’.


    • Doublethinker says:

      I do not regard white folks as superior to any other coloured folks. But I do strongly prefer to live amongst white folks for a variety of cultural reasons and I would be unhappy if large numbers of people with a different cultural tradition came and changed the nature of my neighbourhood. I suppose you think that this is a racist view. If you do why is it so?


      • Stewart says:

        Your question should be not
        ‘Am I racist?’
        ‘Am I wrong?’


      • Big Dick says:

        I wonder what Scott thinks of that “Hideously straight neighbourhood” of Brighton ?


      • The General says:

        Of course it is not a racist view providing it is expressed by a person of any colour other than white. I presume you are white and therefore you are a disgraceful racist.


    • Jeff Waters says:

      ‘But let’s face it, deep consideration has never exactly been one of your strengths, has it?’

      Scott, is there any need for the inflammatory personal attack?

      It’s completely irrelevant! Yes, yes, I know others do it too, but that doesn’t make it right.

      Play the ball, not the man!


    • George R says:

      BBC-NUJ: subservient to black Lenny Henry’s political demands, subservient to Islam’s political demands of British people.


    • Owen Morgan says:

      “Oh, and finishing off a post with your usual “woooah, if we’re not all afraid of, and thinking of ourselves superior to Muslims, then the world will fall apart”. That’ll get a few more of Biased BBC’s usual freaks salivating.

      “But none of them are racists, of course. The fact that so many of them are convinced of their own superiority based on nothing other than their skin colour is a complete coincidence.”

      You’re the one who assumes that anyone who differs with your views about anything under the sun must, perforce, be a ‘freak’ (your choice of word). I think that that makes you the racist, you infinite moron.


    • F*** the Beeb says:

      You continue, as ever Scott, to provide no evidence for anything you say. You post only ad hominem straw man attacks that are often racist in nature. You are increasingly desperate for attention and it’s sad to witness a grown man acting like such a child. Please, for your own sake get a life and stop wasting your days trolling an audience you claim not to care about. We sure as hell don’t give a shit about you, which is why your site continues to have traffic in the single digits despite your best efforts.


    • The General says:

      So Scott, are you going to enlighten us regarding the
      ‘ rational discussions , with an awareness of the genuine issues’? I am intrigued and await your explanation with interest.


    • johnnythefish says:

      I can’t believe so many people are giving Scott the time of day.

      In every post he shoots himself in the foot and his continuing presence on the site shows he takes the views on here seriously, contrary to his generalising (today’s tediously irrational observation: ‘The fact that so many of them are convinced of their own superiority based on nothing other than their skin colour is a complete coincidence’.)

      Scott is so typical of the Left: unable to play the ball so goes for the man.

      Tiresome, and oh so BBC (‘climate change’, anybody?).


  3. Anton says:

    At the end of a long mediocre career lets pull the good old race card. I am disappointed in you Lenny.
    Lenny mate, the public will decide who they like and who they want to watch, market forces my friend.

    If you have been at the end of racism in casting then letts have the details, name and shame the arsoles. Otherwise do like the rest of us when we are put on the scap heap, in the real world, shut up and get on with your lot.


  4. +james says:

    Lenny’s too many white people on TV is as absurd as someone holding the attitude “the problem with France is that it is filled with the French”.

    Besides the only time Lenny ever emigrated for work was to play a white Italian American gangster, a stereotype and a bit wascist.


  5. Stewart says:

    This career seems to have survived

    Are yes context that’s the reason -not the collusion of the MSN


  6. Ember2014 says:

    Henry started this whole racial-based argument. By assuming black people aren’t being allowed into the creative arts.

    The UKIP candidate interpreted this as meaning “more blacks” which if Henry is referring to quotas does mean less white people recruited into those jobs.


  7. chrisH says:

    Lenny Henry certainly played the race card in order to get his start on telly.
    From New Faces to Tiswaz…from his hopelessly unfunny and racist stereotypes of his own race re Jamaican air traffic control or old black people…sitcoms or what have you…it`s all he`s done.
    He would never have got a start on telly had he not been a younger Charlie Williams at the start of his “career”. He simply has no talent and is not funny-a problem when you`re supposed to be a comic.
    And without the BBC and its interminable charities that allow Lenny to be the token in times gone by…he`d not even have made Ricky Gervais`s fridge magnet, let alone that poster on the wall.
    Gervais nailed him…but the shameless unfunny Lenny blusters on regardless, advertising beds in hotels(which he has long experience of, if the divorce issues are to be believed).
    All wind and sails-going nowhere but in a pointless circle around Stratford and the Review Show.
    We fund him both ends up anyhow,


    • Eric says:

      He seemed to have no problem appearing on the “Black and White Minstrels Show” c 1975.


    • pah says:

      Charlie Williams was the first black person I ever spoke to. He was a very funny man and a genuine Yorkshire gentleman. Sadly missed.

      If Henry was half the man Charlie was …


  8. will says:

    Today’s BBC online article gives gives only this from Henry as a cause of the response from Henwood

    He tweeted after Henry said there should be more black and ethnic minority people in creative industries.

    no mention of a campaign launched by comedian and actor Lenny Henry to change the law to boost the number of black, Asian and minority workers in the television industry.


  9. Geoff says:

    I used to like Lenny and found him funny up to and including Three Of A Kind (with Tracey Ullman and David Copperfield) it seemed he had the ability to not take himself too seriously.

    His career began long before that of Elton and Co, and could have been considered old school, but at some point he became ‘alternative’ and I do wonder if it was the mixing of it with the ‘right on’ lefty ‘ ‘Mrs Thatch’ alliterative comedians that caused him to take himself too seriously, he even married one.

    Also don’t forget he had appeared in The Black and White Minstrel Show, now that is someone who doesn’t take himself too seriously!

    In his early days I thought of him as a Charlie Williams, I wonder if old Charlie would be saying such things today? IMO the Liberals have actually made race relations worse over the last 30 years…


  10. JimS says:

    Lenny Henry at his racist best, Live At The Apollo.


  11. Deborah says:

    Lenny’s call for more black people on the TV is like so many of these calls by the politically correct, reverse them and realise the nonsense. Association of BLACK Policeman? Can you imagine an Association of White Policemen? Lord Hall pleased that Mishal Hussein is on the Today Programme because she is a woman, could the same have been said about Justin Webb being appointed because he is a man? The list is endless and insulting to those the politically correct think they are favouring.


    • Scott says:

      reverse them and realise the nonsense

      It’s only nonsense if you don’t also reverse the realities from which such associations were created. But you won’t.


    • john in cheshire says:

      Or more pointedly at minorities that Justin Webb is a bastard. How much of a minority is that, these days?


  12. stuart says:

    it alway baffles me why the police in tower hamlets would be scared of accusations racism from within the muslim communiy when it is them commiting acts of racism and hate crimes against non muslims,that is just baffling and if true is a new dangerous phase of politacal correctness that in my view is criminal and putting peoples lifes in danger,as for lenny henry.he has always been al sharpton type race baiter stirring bad feeling betreen black and white people but the pc brigade will never point the racist finger at him because he is black,more double standards and hypocrisy from the pc brigade and the bbc as usual.


  13. Dazed & Confused says:

    Straight away after a two second search….An item that you’ll never see on the BBC…



  14. Dioclese says:

    I can’t understand why it is that you do not understand that racism only applies when white people do it. Simples….


  15. +james says:

    Perhaps Lenny believes too many white people stay at the Premier Inn.


    • Alec Coole says:

      Yep Premier Inns are horribly white…….

      (but there’s a fat cheque in the post)


  16. Arthur Penney says:

    The Telegraph have got two articles on this as their ‘bash an UKIP’ for the day.

    Interestingly they haven’t opened the articles up to comments – which suggests another colour – much closer to white than black.


  17. Jeff Waters says:

    ‘BNP leader Nick Griffin was also asked if he considered Mr Henwood’s comments about Lenny Henry to be racist.’


    Real subtle, BBC…


  18. CJ says:

    So – he doesn’t like white actors but he does like white women. Has he ever slept with a black one – does this mean he is a racist?


  19. Dave s says:

    Why do these people use Twitter? The liberal and faux conservative elites are desperate to discredit UKIP. Keep your thoughts to yourself. The media is almost 100% against UKIP.
    I think they know just how fed up we are with the three parties. It could be interesting. Strangely enough I had an interesting conversation with a diehard Green. She and I agreed on one thing. It is essential to deny the three old parties votes. The disaffection from politics as practised by the professional politicos has gone very deep. An elite is most dangerous when faced with uncertainty. Keep silent and just vote.


  20. George R says:


    Written by Robert Henderson.



  21. jpt says:

    Could a white person go to Nigeria for example and say to ANY organisation there ‘too many blacks here for my liking, hideously black in fact – you’ll have to hire some whites’?
    I don’t think so.


  22. F*** the Beeb says:

    It’s a shame to see Lenny Henry make these remarks. While I never found him to be the funniest comedian, and of course he made that sort-of-racist-and-more-importantly-not-very-amusing films years ago where he wore whiteface (it’s called True Identity, and trust me, it’s not even as funny as White Chicks), I also respected the fact that he did those sketches which took the piss out of the whole “it’s because I’m black” thing by putting him in situations where he clearly wasn’t suitable (e.g. as a surrogate mother) and managing to force himself into the role by playing the race card. So it’s sad to see him now seemingly betray this satire and actually fall in line with the very thing he was mocking.

    That said, I also completely reject the remarks made by the UKIP candidate. Henry is actually already from a’ black country’ – specifically, Dudley in the Black Country. He’s as British as I am. Remarks like that of William Henwood just damage UKIP’s reputation and make it easier for the media to slag them off. The BBC ends up getting away with ignoring Henry’s racism by focusing on the hotheaded response of Henwood and turning it into another anti-UKIP exercise. UKIP would do well to distance itself from this man.


    • John Anderson says:

      Totally agree about the UKIP candidate – and they should know that the knives are out, people are crawling for quotes all over the social media


  23. The General says:

    Went to see Lenny Henry at Royal Shakespeare theater about 20yrs ago and was very surprised when halfway through the program he asked if there were any black people in the audience and then proceeded to chat to the black lad who proudly stood up. I thought that was inappropriate and unnecessary and wonder what would be said if a white comedian performing in Bradford were to pose the same inquiry regarding the possible presence of a white person .


  24. Maturecheese says:

    The UKIP candidate was stupid to say what he did especially when they are under the microscope. It is just giving ammunition to all those sad offence takers, who are rarely the demographic in question, to scream ‘Racist’


  25. Flexdream says:

    Being fair to Lenny Henry, I haven’t heard that he’s hypocritically played the race card against UKIP. It’s the usual suspects who are having another puny go against UKIP.


  26. Bangernofski says:

    My mate is a TV writer, Jewish and hideously white. Wrote for Lenny Henry backed black show 20 years ago. He said Henry walked in the room full of writers and told my mate to leave until he explained he had been employed by the BBC as a writer on this ‘black’ show. That show lasted one series, not surprisingly. As pointed out his career is based entirely on racial stereotypes rather than being funny.