WATCH: John Barnes delivers eloquent defence of recent Liam Neeson comments live on BBC
He spoke very well.
John Barnes has once again spoken passionately about recent comments made by Liam Neeson, where the actor stated that he wanted to kill a "black bastard", following an incident a number of years ago.
Speaking on BBC Question Time on Thursday night, Barnes said he "absolutely" stood by his recent defence of Neeson's comments.
Barnes once again stated that the problem was not with what Neeson said, but with society as a whole and how racism and discrimination stems from our upbringing, and that's what the conversation needs to be about.
"Why I have to give him credit is because as much as we all want to say we view people as equal, we don’t, and we have to admit it," Barnes said.
"Because we are influenced by our environment and the environment that he came from, albeit from a Catholic and Protestant point of view, is; whoever the enemy is we have to kill the enemy.
"The enemy at that particular time happened to be black. But it equally could have been English and he’d have wanted to have killed any English man. So, those holier than thou would say how terrible it is, [that] it's a disgrace. What is the truth about the way we all feel about people from different races, different religions? We all discriminate and we have to admit it.
"And not only do we have to admit it. Why I’m happy to say that I discriminate unconsciously is because the environment I was brought up in shows me that and continues to show me that. You read the newspapers every day and you hear about Muslim terrorists and Nigerian gangs and that gives you a negative impression of not just terrorists and of con men or gangs, but also of Nigerians and Muslims. This is the influence that society has on us.
"We can’t help the way we’ve been brought up and unless we’re going to be able to have the conversation rather than as soon as we mention anything say, ‘You’re racist and you discriminate but we don’t’, but that’s not the reality.
"Because if I was to ask you now, if you had a choice of who you’d have to live next to, between a - well, I don’t know where you’re from - between anybody, a muslim and a white. You would have an opinion based on how you’ve been brought up. But we won’t admit it because we’re afraid of being called racist."
‘We won’t admit it, because we are afraid of being called racist’@officialbarnesy says people need to have open and honest conversations about unconscious discrimination and racism. #bbcqt pic.twitter.com/g7NXueMJ41
— BBC Question Time (@bbcquestiontime) February 21, 2019