I’ve thought about what to post next about a million times today. So much to say and process. There may be more than one.
Firstly, keep buggering on. I keep saying it, and I know it’s exhausting. I’m currently fighting to save the NHS, my local library and the world whilst attempting to smash the patriarchy and make something for tea that is not just pasta with grated cheese on top.
We’ve got a long road ahead. We cannot do everything, so don’t even try. Pick what you can do, and do it. If you need a break, take one. Don’t be fooled by the diet mantra, i.e. ‘I fell off the wagon today so there’s no point getting back on it. I shall eat Mars Bars forever.’ There is every point.
Don’t be suckered in by the relentless tide of people saying it’s pointless. Let’s look shall we?
The Women’s March. Inspirational, world beating and world leading. Showed we could work together despite our differences. Showed we could protest peacefully in our millions. Showed we could keep going after the march. Loads of things are happening now thanks to that march. The one people keep saying didn’t make a difference. I bet you dollars to donuts that if that march hadn’t happened, the wave of anti Muslim Ban marches wouldn’t have been half so impressive. People saw what was happening and they realised that they could do something too, and they wanted to be a part of it. Some of it is down to what went before.
The ban Trump from a state visit petition. One of the largest national petitions in UK history, if not by now the largest. Nearly 2 million people have signed it. It isn’t a ban from visiting. It’s a ban from spending millions on him being pandered to because ‘he’ wants to meet the Queen for his own self importance. May threw it at him because she knows he wouldn’t be able to resist the flattery. Her attempt to shut down the petition led to government defying her. This is good. She is not a dictator. She does not get to choose what we do and when we do it because she feels its a good idea. She has to respect the constitution. She should have learned from trying to rush through Brexit. She didn’t.
What did it do? It motivated a thoroughly apathetic house of commons to get off their backsides because even if May can’t see which way the political wind is blowing, they can. It motivated an emergency debate which was unanimously passed in condemning Trump’s actions and questioning whether the red carpet should be rolled out for him. It led to Theresa having to capitulate about a debate on the petition. Don’t get me wrong. It’s not going to stop him coming, and nor should it. I for one want to be the first in line to pelt eggs at him. But it did remind Theresa May that she is not a dictator and regardless of what Trump does in the USA, her own government are not going to roll over meekly and be told. At least not on all matters.
And the events of the last few days, ghastly though many of them are, have strengthened the arguments against a hard Brexit as it is clear that May will have no choice but to cosy up to people like Trump and Erdogan. I doubt the house will stand up against Article Fifty but the debates on the floor are so much more passionate and engaged and realistic and we, with our campaigns and our letter writing and our petitions have helped to remind those that serve us that we are not all apathetic puppets who can be dangled on strings at the whims of anyone who can be bothered to get up and do something, because so many more of us are bothering to get up and do something.
So, if you were in two minds about going to the Anti Brexit march in London this Saturday, I urge you to go. It isn’t futile. I’ve said it before, but if it truly were, then nobody in opposition would bother to get quite so het up about it. And if you’re in two minds about going to the Save The NHS March in London on March 4th, go. I’ll see you there.