I like digging at people and being a punk in the classroom or office. And throughout uni and grad school, one fun target for me was The Morrissey Fan. Confront your Smiths and Morrissey fan with the blatant white reactionaryism in Morrissey’s style (never mind what he’s actually said), and you’ll get all kinds of excuses. I really enjoyed reading this Quietus essay because the publication’s fanbase needs this bit of education. From the previously linked Quietus essay:
Cut to 2016. Against a background of post-Brexit tensions Morrissey has yet again invited contempt for his serial views regarding race and ethnicity. Last week, he said that London’s first Muslim mayor Sadiq Khan “eats Halal butchered beings and talks so quickly that people don’t understand him… and that suits the British media perfectly.” Pop’s own Prince Phillip is no stranger to such remarks, in the past speculating on whether the Chinese are a “sub-species” and complaining that “the gates are flooded and anybody can have access to England and join in.”. All of these are given as signs of the degeneration of a once-radical figure, but right from the outset, Morrissey and The Smiths represented a fatally reactionary moment in British pop culture - a severing of punk and post-punk’s honourable links with black musics. They were here to reject colour in every respect, be it the gaudy, neon-lit backdrop of Top Of The Pops against which Morrissey wanly cavorted, or the colourisation of indie afforded by its embrace of dance music and reggae. Their wistful cover artwork, harking back to popular icons of the 50s and early 60s, were redolent of a time when black people had a near-zero cultural imprint on the British consciousness, unless you counted the hugely, inexplicably popular The Black And White Minstrel Show. This was explicit, as well as implicit. Morrissey spoke of a conspiracy to promote black music in the British charts, while opining that reggae was “vile”.