Boris Johnson Slams Black Lives Matter for 'Bullying' People to 'Take the Knee'
British prime minister asserts he will not submit to leftist organization with 'gesture'
Boris Johnson has slammed far-left Black Lives Matter activists for "bullying" people into "taking the knee," making clear that he will not be "bullied" into making the "gesture."
The British prime minister says he is focusing on the "substance" of changing social attitudes and improving opportunities for ethnic minorities and will not be pressured into bowing before the far-left organization.
Johnson made comments during a phone-in on LBC radio following increasing pressure on officials to "take the knee" in solidarity with the radical BLM group.
The PM's remarks came after his Secretary of State Dominic Raab said last month that he would not personally "take the knee" - an anti-Trump protest that has swept the world since the death of George Floyd in the US.
Raab faced a backlash after saying it seemed to be a symbol of "subjugation" and the only two people he knelt for were his wife when he proposed and the Queen.
Mr. Johnson also took issue with activists "bullying" police officers into submitting with the "gesture" during anti-cop Black Lives Matter protests.
Referencing early Black Lives Matter protests in London, Prime Minister Johnson remarked: “If you think of what happened with those police officers standing at the Cenotaph where they were being insulted in really quite aggressive terms by some members of the crowd and told to take the knee.
"Some of them did,” Johnson told LBC on Friday.
"It was very difficult, then, for others who didn’t.
"I think it’s very important that you don’t do things that make life difficult or embarrassing.”
“I don’t want people to be bullied into doing things that they don’t necessarily want to do."
When asked if he would personally kneel to Black Lives Matter, Mr. Johnson told LBC’s Nick Ferrari: “I don’t believe in gestures, I believe in substance.
"I believe in doing things that make a practical difference.”
When asked whether he would take the knee, Boris Johnson said "I don't believe in gestures. I believe in substance."— LBC News (@LBCNews) July 3, 2020
He adds there "are injustices we need to rectify" but "I don't want people to be bullied into doing things they don't want to do"#BorisOnLBC pic.twitter.com/1qW3OQeqOG
The prime minister’s condemnations of BLM’s bullying tactics and iconoclasm comes after several British establishment organizations have u-turned on their support for the movement after recently claiming to realize it had a far-left political agenda.
After statements of support for “abolishing” the police, left-wing opposition Labour Party leader Sir Keir Starmer, who kneeled for BLM just a few weeks ago, on Monday claimed he did not support the political “movement” of BLM.
Other bodies distanced themselves from the “political” movement after Black Lives Matter’s British chapter.
The moves come after BLMUK tweeted an anti-Israel post that employed the antisemitic trope that the Jewish state was "gagging" political discourse over settlements and the Palestinian territories.
The tweets shone a light on the group's true agenda, with many looking closer at the organizations political motives after initially taking their name at face value.
In response, England’s Premier League football association, which had replaced players’ names on shirts with the phrase "Black Lives Matter," has now backed away.
The Premier League claims that it did not support any political organization that “calls for violence or condones illegal activity.”
Major sports stars in the UK have also begun to ditch Black Lives Matter as the far-left organization's "divisive" political agenda has started to emerge.
And after weeks of the BBC platforming BLMUK’s narrative that Britain is a racist country, the state’s major broadcaster has reportedly told its presenters and guests to not wear Black Lives Matter badges on screen for fear of appearing impartial.
Several prominent TV personalities have come forward saying they wore badges with the Black Lives Matter logo and slogan after being pressured to do so by their broadcasting networks.