Politics & Policy

Sociologist: Gardening Spreads Racism, Fascism

UK professor says BBC gardening show is culturally biased toward greenthumbed people.

A sociology lecturer at the University of Westminster is claiming that panelists on a BBC radio show are covertly spreading racist and fascist messages when they talk about gardening.

Dr. Ben Pitcher claimed that people on Gardeners’ Question Time are really just using gardening as a covert way to talk about white identity without seeming racist.

Gardeners’ Question Time is not the most controversial show on Radio 4, and yet it is layered with, saturated with, racial meanings,” he said on another Radio 4 show, according to an article in the Daily Mail.

“The context here is the rise of nationalism,” he continued.

The topics discussed on the show include different plant species and soil purity, which Pitcher identified as code language for racial purity. The Caucasian sociologist said radio personalities use discussions of “invasive” and non-native plant species to express opposition to foreigners. Another guest on Radio 4 — a baroness and former professor of cultural studies — agreed with Pitcher, comparing British concerns about rhododendrons to anti-Pakistani sentiments in the 1980s.

A frequent panelist on Gardeners’ Question Time, the aptly named Bob Flowerdew, called Pitcher’s claims “ridiculous.”

“Does he want us to stop using words altogether? Perhaps we shouldn’t use Latin names to avoid offending the Romans,” Flowerdew said.

– Katherine Timpf is a reporter at National Review Online.

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