The comment allegedly made by David Fleming, director of Mational Museums Merseyside (NML) which Wayne highlighted last week (http://liverpoolpreservationtrust.blogspot.com/2010/08/i-want-all-young-black-men-to-feel-shit.html ) demands some sort of statement from him. It beggars belief that he has decided to remain silent rather than confirm or deny that he said the words attributed to him & explain himself at the very least.
It is unclear when or where Fleming made the alleged remark. However, a podcast was made of a discussion at Liverpool Museum last April (the day of which was the anniversary of Hillsborough, as it happens) on the struggle for civil rights, with particular regard to the US, "From Lincoln to Obama: a look at the progress of civil rights" (http://www.liverpoolmuseums.org.uk/podcasts/lincoln_obama.aspx ).
It should be stated that Fleming certainly doesn't make the comment attributed to him on the podcast. However, that should not serve as the final word on the matter.
Fleming is currently on holiday, but must surely be aware of the furore caused by the alleged quote. That being the case, he could simply pick up his mobile phone & tell the appropriate outlets the real situation; there can be all sorts of extenuating circumstances in which a repugnant sentiment is aired (taken out of context, directly quoting a bigot, etc.). Whatever the truth of the matter is, Fleming, as a public servant, owes it to the people of Merseyside to make a full & formal statement on the alleged remark.
Fleming, of course, has form when it comes to uttering crass & offensive comments. He proposed exhibitions of Hillsborough & the Bulger case at the Museum of Liverpool (http://liverpoolpreservationtrust.blogspot.com/2010/03/museum-of-liverpool-citadel-of-disaster.html ).
He has also spoken in the most disparaging terms of his fellow colleagues & staff (http://liverpoolpreservationtrust.blogspot.com/2009/03/watching-detectives.html ): "Why is it that most curators and museum staff are completely dysfunctional in normal society? Most of them you would not want to take out for a drink. They're weird! And why is it that our sector thinks it's appropriate to put weird people at the head of it?"
Given his track record for producing cringeworthy, tactless & downright callous quotes, Fleming needs to make a statement fast. Remaining silent is not an option.