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Priti Patel: Taking the knee is ‘gesture politics’

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Home Secretary Priti Patel has called the England squad taking the knee “gesture politics” after they took the knee with fans having the right to boo because that is their choice.

It comes as the England fans booed the squad as they took to the knee of their Euro opener against Croatia at Wembley before applause and cheering broke out.

Ms Patel has been visiting Cleveland Police which currently has the second-highest level of violent crime in the country.

She had been to Redcar to see the stories and understand the statistics of violent crime that takes place within the Cleveland area and to understand the families who have had their lives changed forever by the violent acts of another person. 

The FA has issued a statement urging supporters who do not agree with the Black Lives Matter statement asking fans to “reflect on the message you are sending out to the players you are supporting.”

Why do fans boo when England take to the knee?

Many football fans see the Black Lives Matter statement as a political statement and do not believe they should be taking to the knee, because like clap for careers it has ran it’s time and the message is out there.

Telling GB News Priti Patel said “I just don’t support, people participating in that type of gesture politics to a certain extent as well,”

“It’s all well to support a cause and, you know, make your voices heard, but actually, quite frankly, and we saw last year in particular with some of the the protests that took place, I speak now very much from what I saw and the impact on policing. It was devastating.

“And not only that, I just don’t subscribe to this view that we should be rewriting our history, you know, pulling down statues, the famous Colston statue and what’s happened there. Toppling statues is not the answer. It’s about learning from our past, learning from our history and actually working together.”

When I asked if she would supported fans who booed players taking the knee, Patel replied “Well, that’s a choice for them, quite frankly.”

When asked if she would participate in the booing the Home Secretary added “Well, I’ve not gone to a football match to even sort of contemplate that, but I maintain my point, quite frankly, that we learn from our past. We don’t try to rewrite it.”

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Trevor Sherwood
Trevor Sherwood
Trevor Sherwood is the editor and news reporter covering national and international news crime and policing news. Tweet your news and views to @TrevSherwoodPH

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