THE National’s Wednesday front page denouncing the racist deputy chair of the Conservative Party Lee Anderson as a “Pound Shop Enoch Powell” was spot on.

But there is a significant difference between how Powell’s racism was received and the reaction to Anderson’s racist filth.

When Enoch Powell made his anti-immigrant “rivers of blood” speech in April 1968 he was immediately sacked as the Tory shadow defence secretary by the then Tory leader Edward Heath. Powell never held a senior political post again. The majority of the UK’s establishment also condemned Powell’s racism.

READ MORE: Lee Anderson branded 'pound shop Enoch Powell' for anti-migrant call

The Times denounced his “evil speech”, insisting: “This is the first time that a serious British politician has appealed to racial hatred in this direct way in our post-war history.”

Fifty-five years on from Powell’s speech, the deputy chair of the Conservative Party, Lee Anderson MP, gave an interview to The Daily Express in which he told asylum-seekers: “If they don’t like barges, then they should fuck off back to France.”

In contrast to how Powell’s bigotry was received, Anderson’s unambiguously racist language has been defended by the Justice Secretary Alex Chalk who argues “there’s a lot of sense in what Lee says”.

At the time of writing Rishi Sunak has yet to comment on the affair, but given he chose to appoint Anderson deputy chair of the Tories despite his proven links with far-right racists, it’s probable he’ll take no action against Anderson. After all, he has kept Home Secretary Suella Braverman in post despite her repeated violations of the ministerial code.

READ MORE: LBC's James O'Brien accuses Tory MP Lee Anderson of 'bigotry'

The Tories now have a deputy chair who uses the language of the gutter against desperate asylum-seekers, a “justice minister” who defends him, a Home Secretary who is obsessed with persecuting asylum-seekers and wants them imprisoned in a concentration camp in Rwanda or on the floating gulag the Bibby Stockholm and a Prime Minister who has nothing to offer except anti-refugee hate.

Lee Anderson is proof that the Tories have made the transition from nasty reactionaries to far-right extremists.

Refugees are welcome. It’s the Tories who should “f**k off”!

Sasha Simic

DID anyone else notice Penny Mordaunt’s choice of words at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe last weekend?

Commenting on Scottish independence she said that “something so fundamental as independence requires a referendum and we had one [in 2014]”.

READ MORE: Penny Mordaunt mocked for 'UK is a family' claim

No Ms Mordaunt, we had a referendum; you did not. Not, that is, unless you were admitting that your government in London participated in our referendum and interfered in our international right to self-determination as enshrined in UN declarations. If that is the case then perhaps it is not too outrageous to say that Scotland is indeed a colony of England and that the government in London does not regard Scotland as an equal partner in the Union but rather as a resource to be grasped tightly lest it slips through their fingers.

There is no longer any disguising the intention of the powers that want to hold us in the toxic Union. It is time all Scots, old and new, realised what is going on and either joined the independence movement or stepped out of the way of progress toward a future as a grown-up nation state.

Ni Holmes
St Andrews

REGARDING John Baird’s response (Aug 7) to my letter of August 3, I noted his assertion that I misunderstood his criticism of Humza Yousaf’s political activities on Saturday July 29.

With all due respect, I would suggest that I understood Mr Baird’s viewpoint/criticism perfectly well, as it was much the same as he expresses regularly on the letters page.

To revisit my original correspondence, one of my main points, which was ignored, was to express my disbelief over Mr Baird’s censorious tone regarding the SNP contesting the upcoming election which, to quote him, “by all accounts they will lose”.

I assume Mr Baird favours the alternative, ie the SNP hoist the white flag and flee the by-election field.

READ MORE: Poll: Independence important to more voters than environment, education or Brexit

I also noted that one of the reasons for Humza being placed on the naughty step was the fact that he had dared to campaign before the inevitable by-election was officially announced.

The fact that Labour has been campaigning in the constituency for months was not mentioned; strange.

My admission that I had already sent a wee donation to the SNP’s by-election fund elicited a slightly sneering, testy reaction from Mr Baird along the lines of yes, and they will need “many more”.

I totally agree and must make a note to send another.

Malcolm Cordell
Broughty Ferry, Dundee

JOHN Baird’s recent letter (Aug 7) really draws out an important question for the Yes movement. When did marching become more important than campaigning and activism?

Now marches and rallies have a place; I’ll be going to the Believe in Scotland one next month. But that will be a fun day surrounded by others, hopefully inspiring some attendees to get out and campaign. But that’s it. Marching is no substitute for the real work.

Imagine how off some people’s campaign priorities must be to attack anyone for campaigning rather than going for a nice walk with those who already agree with you.

In 2014 the movement did not march. It was a campaigning, door-chapping machine. Maybe we need to get back to that, rather than thinking marches can replace activism.

Alan Petrie
Aberdeen independence Movement