This week we watched a lady being arrested for displaying a Gollywog in her window. Apparently this white lady doesn’t get on with her black neighbours so when she placed this little black cuddly toy in her window it was deemed racist and the court case is soon to follow. I do admittedly wonder if the black family would have been arrested for placing a white doll in their window, but that is neither here nor there for should this Gollywog be found guilty the greatest witch hunt for a single toy could soon take place in museums, homes and collections nationwide. It’s just as well she hadn’t displayed a St. George’s flag in her window!
When Marian was a little girl in Ghana many children played with cuddly Gollywogs and when I was a wee boy in Glasgow we had no shortage of Robertson’s jam, yet neither I as a Scot or Marian as an African saw anything insidiously racist about the little fellow. We still don’t! What you hear, so very loudly, are the politically correct do-gooders telling you all Gollywogs must be destroyed at all costs, but what would you see if you were a black person living abroad? You would see the English people hell-bent on destroying a little smiling black doll. What could be more racist than that?
Whatever this white lady’s motivations were for putting the Gollywog in the window, although I must confess they don’t look good, if this case against the cuddly Gollywog succeeds the potential results of the precedent are enormous. Apart from the pillaging and pyres of burning of Gollywogs outside museums every single Englishman who has a St. George’s flag flying or on display will soon be told to take it down because it too could upset a neighbour. Take your St. George down or go straight to jail! If you have a Leak in your garden your Welsh neighbour could accuse you of planting it out of anti-Welsh racism and if you sell Campbells soup in your local corner shop the McDonalds fast food next door could have you closed down. No one is safe, if you buy an Irish Setter and a Yorkshire Terrier the O’Somethings from Pontefract could have you arrested and the poor dogs put down. Humour aside it’s time to save the Gollywogs, your right to fly the flag of St George could be dependent on it!
Even if this white lady’s motivations were totally wrong this case against the Gollywog should be thrown out now. If displaying a cuddly Gollywog can merit arrest for racism then without a shadow of a doubt someone else will soon have their neighbour arrested for flying the Union flag or St George. I am not English, but I believe my English neighbours on both sides, especially the one with the ferocious ex-police dog, have every right to fly that flag whether it upsets me as a Scot or not.
There are no winners in this case and neither Marian nor I see how this sort of behaviour can help black people or white people at all. A national Gollywog cull will bring unnecessary resentment and hurt, especially where that cuddly toy belonged to a bereaved child or has emotional attachment. Please neighbours, sort your dispute between you, we’ve had enough riots and racial hatred already thank you!
Look at that lovely smile and those big eyes!