Why does Daniel Hannan get such flak for saying among his political heroes is Enoch Powell? He’s one of my heroes too. That doesn’t make me a racist, nor does it make Daniel Hannan a racist. It’s the simple bigoted sloganeering by the left.
No, I didn’t listen to his ‘Rivers of Blood’ speech, nor did I agree with it’s message, nor am I linking to it.
Back in the mid 1960’s my brother and I journeyed from our home in Shropshire to listen to a speech by Enoch Powell on the economy, in Birmingham’s wonderful classical Town Hall. Enoch’s speeches were works of art, logical in structure, powerful in there message, and passionate in there delivery. I’m not sure about the rest of the audience, but for us it was an uplifting experience to listen to a political speech that mattered. How we marvelled at his brilliance on our train journey home.
Later on I lived in Wolverhampton when Enoch Powell was one of it’s MP’s. He was my MP. I’m proud to have met him, canvassed with him, and understood his appeal to voters, whether they were a dustman or duke. Did I agree with him on everything. Hell no, he resigned from the Conservative party just prior to the 1974 election, leaving the local party in the lurch.
While I understood his reasons for doing so, he was against our joining the EEC. I never truly understood the reason, for at heart he was a conservative. Though a flawed a one. Perhaps all great men are flawed in one way or another. Possibly nature’s way of balancing things out.
I’ve struggled to read Simon Heffer’s biography of Enoch Powell. I think it lacked the excitement, lucidity, and logicality of a Powellite speech. Also, perhaps it’s the peering into the reasons for his character flaws. However, I’d love to read a book of his speeches. To read his little rhetorical flourishes that were pointers to great political insights to come. Oh, just to conjour up an image of the great man in my mind all over again.