Is Morrissey a racist?
The answer is an emphatic 'no'. In the forty years that I have known Morrissey, I have never once heard a racist epithet pass his lips. The terms 'racist', 'fascist', and 'Islamophobe' are so freely used nowadays against those whose opinions and worldview differs from our own, that they have lost their power and meaning.
Also, there is a worrying trend on the Left that, ironically, echoes fascism in its intolerance of reasoned debate. One is not only 'wrong' in expressing a different opinion, but one is also now 'evil'. I believe that calling Morrissey a racist is unjustifiable and wrong.
However, if you want to run out of the house wearing a garment ill-suited to the elements in order to throw Viva Hate into the Manchester Ship Canal, then that is, of course, your right.
In supporting Brexit, this does not make Morrissey an immigrant-hating 'Little Englander' who lives only to reverse the metric system and bring back steam trains. The truth is, there are myriad reasons why people voted to leave the EU. One of them is a mistrust of Brussels technocracy where unelected representatives make decisions that are arguably a matter for sovereignty.
Patriotism and Nationalism are very distinct: the former is characterised by an affection for one's country; the second is a more extreme and unforgiving form of allegiance to one's homeland. Morrissey might be guilty of patriotism, but not of nationalism.
Opposing Sharia Law in the UK, or FGM, or institutionalised misogyny—which is (trigger warning) widespread in the developing world—is an appropriate Western response borne of democracy and the development of civil liberties. It is neither racist nor Islamophobic.
After all, if I were to move to the United Arab Emirates in search of a better life, I wouldn't reasonably expect to be able to build a hot dog stand empire, serving pork products whilst dressed in a gender-neutral miniskirt.
To oppose halal slaughter is to oppose slaughter with additional cruelty. The zakat tax payable for Halal certification is used by Islamic organisations to fund mosques and religious schools. Such is the many-tentacled nature of zakat, it is difficult to determine whether it is also being used to crowdfund Islamist extremism. There is a growing concern in some quarters that it might be.
Hitler was indeed 'Left-wing' in the sense of incorporating the word 'socialist' into the party's name to cynically draw voters away from communism and towards populist nationalism dressed as socialism. Hence, 'Hitler was Left-wing.' Morrissey was not suggesting that Hitler and Yvette Cooper (for example) share the same political ideals. The fact is, Left-wing totalitarianism looks little different to Right-wing authoritarianism — if you're being oppressed, it's the same experience.
Again, is Morrissey a racist?
My answer is an emphatic 'no'.