Black History Month in the United Kingdom, which kicked off on Monday, is under attack on multiple fronts.
In the latest assault, one of the largest Black History Month websites came under a “cyber-racism” attack for a second consecutive day on Tuesday, as some local officials continued their efforts to whitewash the celebration of Black Britons, the Guardian reports.
The website, which serves as an information hub for schools that also lists events, first came under assault Monday morning. After the IT team restored the site hours later, hackers brought it down again on Tuesday.
“Our website is the most popular in the UK on Black history. I think it was done deliberately to ensure the content’s not available or accessible,” said Patrick Vernon, the editor of Black History Month magazine, adding that the domestic attack “is part of a wider context of cyber-racism” in the country.
Meanwhile, several local councils across London are finding other ways to destroy Black History Month, which was first celebrated in the U.K. in 1987.
The Conservative-dominated West London borough of Hillingdon switched the focus of the celebration from African and Caribbean culture and contributions to a broader focus on multiculturalism.
And in Wandsworth, a Conservative stronghold located in South London, local officials rebranded Black History Month as “Diversity Month.” Events there will include the Indian, Polish, Spanish, Chinese, African and Caribbean cultures found in the borough.
This comes against the backdrop of the 2018 Windrush scandal, named for the ship that transported scores of Black immigrants to the U.K. from British Commonwealth Caribbean countries to help rebuild after the devastation of World War II. Decades later, many of those same people had their legal status questioned and faced deportation.
“Windrush has highlighted just why Black History Month 2018 is so important. It is important that it remains focused on the contribution of African-Caribbean people. It makes a huge difference to hear Black history spoken about positively. But it’s also important that people are reminded of Black history,” said Dawn Butler, a member of the U.K. Parliament.