London Bars American Extremists, Including Radio Shock Jock
The government of the United Kingdom has banned five American right-wing radicals, including a radio show host with a weekly audience of more than 8 million people, from entering the country, citing their well-known reputations for "fostering extremism and hatred."
According to a list released by the Home Office, the U.K. governmental department that oversees immigration and visas, the banned U.S. citizens and the specific reasons they're not allowed into the U.K. are:
Stephen Donald Black, a.k.a. Don Black, former Alabama Klan leader and creator of the white nationalist online forum Stormfront, banned for "promoting serious criminal activity and fostering hatred that might lead to inter-community violence in the UK."
Erich Gliebe, chairman of the National Alliance, a neo-Nazi hate group, banned for "engaging in unacceptable behaviour by justifying terrorist violence, provoking others to commit serious crime and fostering racial hatred."
Fred Phelps Sr. and daughter Shirley Phelps Roper, leaders of the "God Hates F---" Westboro Baptist Church, banned for "picket[ing] the funerals of Aids victims and [claiming] the deaths of American soldiers are a punishment for U.S tolerance of homosexuality."
Michael Alan Weiner, a.k.a. Michael Savage, talk radio shock jock, banned for "seeking to provoke others to serious criminal acts and fostering hatred." The Home Office also noted that Savage's "views on immigration, Islam, rape and autism have caused g reat offence in the U.S." Savage, whose show is syndicated nationally by Talk Radio Network, has the third largest audience of any American radio show host.
The list of banned individuals also named Islamic clerics accused of promoting terrorism, a Jewish militant and two Russian skinhead gang leaders.
Shortly after the list was made public in April, The Daily Mirror, a major London newspaper, published a photo of Don Black rubbing shoulders with Nick Griffin, head of the far-right British National Party (BNP), at a white supremacist conference in Washington, D.C., in 2007. Also present were BNP publicity chief Mark Collett and field organizer Martin Reynolds.
Rather than downplay his party's relationship with the ex-convict who once tried to overthrow the government of a small Caribbean island by force of arms, Griffin responded by insisting that Black should be allowed into the U.K. "The only people who can be kept out are those who inflict violence, which Don Black has not," he stated.
Home Secretary Jacqui Smith, though, is showing no signs of reversing her decision.
"Coming to the U.K. is a privilege, and I refuse to extend that privilege to individuals who abuse our standards and values to undermine our way of life," Smith said. "Therefore, I do not hesitate to name and shame those who foster extremist views as I want them to know that they are not welcome here."