ASHLEY Banjo has shared the horrific racist abuse he’s suffered since performing a Black Lives Matter dance with his troupe Diversity on Britain’s Got Talent.
The TV star posted a gallery of horrible messages he has been targted with since the performance and insisted that the vitriolic commentary was worth it to bring the issue to a bigger audience.
Taking to Instagram today, the choreographer asked his followers to not “worry” about him but others that don’t have his platform and have to deal with abuse daily.
Sharing 10 screenshots of nasty messages he has received online, Ashley wrote: “No I don’t mean ‘criticism’… I mean ‘Racism’.
“I mean hate… I mean the very thing that makes every single second of that performance and every single complaint worth it.
He continued: “I didn’t want to even shed light on any of this directly. But here’s just a small selection from the past week.
“And please don’t worry about or feel sorry for me… Feel sorry for the people that endure this kind of abuse and have no voice or platform.
“Feel sorry for the people that have been singled out, abused and in some cases murdered because of the colour of their skin,” he added.
“The only saving grace is that this is the vast minority… But for all the people asking or wondering – yes it is very real and yes it does exist.”
One of the post’s Ashley received read: “If you don’t like living in a white country go live in Africa.
“I think you would genuinely feel more comfortable there. As would I if you did.”
Meanwhile, another said: “How dare a group of blacks call themselves ‘Diversity’!”
His impassioned post comes after BGT received more than 15,500 complaints from viewers following Diversity’s Black Lives Matter routine.
The number of complaints has soared throughout last week after Ashley led the dance troupe for the emotional performance on September 5.
It came as BGT star Alesha Dixon waded into the BLM row by telling haters: “kiss my black a**”.
The performance, which saw Jordan’s brother Ashley lying on the floor with a white police officer kneeling on him, referenced the death of George Floyd in the US.
There were also backing dancers dressed in riot gear and the group took the knee partway through.
Diversity’s powerful performance is now the second most complained about TV moment in a decade.
The first is Roxanne Pallett’s Celebrity Big Brother ‘punchgate’ drama with former Corrie star Ryan Thomas with 25,327 complaints and Kim Woodburn’s interview on Loose Women comes third with 7,912 complaints.
In addition to the complaints, Ashley revealed last week that he had received a barrage of abuse over the routine.
But the show’s stand-in judge thanked his critics for proving that it was a necessary performance.
Taking to Twitter, he wrote: “So much to say… But I’ll Just let the performance talk. Thousands of messages of Love and support – Thank you.
“For the thousands of messages of hate and ignorance – Thank you. You highlight exactly what needs to change. Sending nothing but love to you all.”
While the performance ignited outrage from some BGT viewers, others said the “powerful” routine had moved them to tears.
Diversity performed their spectacular trademark spinning dance moves in front of backing dancers dressed as riot police with shields.
Ashley, who was a judge at the weekend in place of the injured Simon Cowell, opened the piece by reciting a viral poem The Great Realisation by the singer Tomfoolery, which is about the BLM movement and police brutality.
The performance also addressed the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, capitalism, and the growth of delivery services like Amazon.
It was branded “powerful” by host Dec Donnelly moments after it ended
After debuting the moving routine, Ashley said: “This performance is extremely special to me and the rest of Diversity.
“2020 has been an incredible moment in history for both positive and negative reasons.
“We wanted to use the platform we’ve been given to make our voices heard, express how the events of this year have made us feel and think about how we might look back on them in the future… We call it hindsight 2020.”