A short while ago I received an email from Anthony Richardson, asking me to publish his full and frank apology. This I have agreed to do in good faith. So here it is, in full :
Please print this in full on your blog.
I am writing to you as Anthony Richardson, featured in the ‘UAF Celebrate Violence Against Women in Tower Hamlets‘ video.
I am writing first to apologise about the conduct in the video, and second to tell you that neither Ben Melchiors or Ben Tonge, who have both been misidentified as being the cameraman, played any part at all in it.
The video was recorded in the heat of the moment in the midst of a very volatile situation. We were bystanders and had not been actively involved in either side of the protest. I can categorically state that I am not part of any political party or particular leaning, nor do I condone violence against anyone, particularly women. I said those comments without thinking, and they were part of an extremely badly judged, terribly thought-through reaction to the unusual events of that day. In fact, I was ashamed of what I said as soon as I said it. We know we come across as complete idiots and never did it cross our minds that we would cause so much offence. My comments were completely against my nature and we are truly sorry that we got involved in a situation that we did not understand.
I am also writing this to ask people to stop pursuing Ben Melchiors and Ben Tonge. As I said, they were in no way involved in this. The Ben on the video I do not work with, he is simply an acquaintance of mine. I can assure you he echoes my feelings about the whole matter and has been involved in the writing of this apology.
So, while I realise I can’t take any of this back, I would like to ask you to take this apology for what it is: completely sincere and written with the intention undoing as many of the problems the video has caused as possible. Our comments on the video were out of character and we’re ashamed of them. I certainly do not condone violence against women, or men for that matter and hope that any political differences expressed by anyone in any circumstance in the future never lead to violence, as seen on that day, it doesn’t help anything. I badly misjudged the situation this time round and am sorry.