Tag Archives: blm protests uk

Taking the knee against racism shames the Tories – support England!

Taking the knee for racial justice is a gesture of solidarity and support i the fight for racial equality. It is taking a knee against racism. You would have thought that might be reasonably uncontroversial – unless you are a racist.

But the government has nailed its flag to the racist banner by supporting the minority of booing racists at England friendly warm-up matches for the Euro 2020 football tournament.

Although the government seems to have since backed down by claiming it now support the players statement against racism, the damage has sadly already been done.

This is of course part of a piece for a government that commissioned a report into racism with the intention that it should deny that racism exists.

Boris Johnson, whose racist track record is well known and for which he hasn’t apologised, is the spearhead of the assault on anti-racism.

Applaud footballer taking the knee against racism; boo our racist government

The message to black footballers is stopping moaning about racism and put up with it! The message to their white team mates is to stop being ‘woke’ by standing up for their team mates. The message to the rest of society is that it is the anti-racists that are the problem not the racists.

There is no other way to interpret this other than as the government teaming up with the far right.

Despite the war by the billionaire media and the government against BLM, a recent poll commissioned by the News Statesman showed a majority of the population think that more must be done to eradicate racism.

The truth is that it is an insulting lie that most white working-class people are supposedly racist.

Over many years of battle and struggle – of black and white – racist has been made non-respectable, although never eradicated, especially at an institutional level.

But the idea that we live in a “post-racial” world, where racism is naturally dying away or doesn’t exist in a deep or measningful way is for the birds.

The evidence is all around us, especially when the policies of this government are concerned – such as Priti Patel‘s racist refugee policies, the ongoing Home Office institutional racism against the Windrush generation, who still mostly have not been compensated and cases of gross injustice continue.

And whatever your background as a black person, you can’t escape racism, even if you are a Premier League footballer.

The shocking refusal of social media companies to clampdown on racists adds to the pain of the footballers who daily have too put up with racism in their social feeds or in stadia across Europe.

Take a knee – that’s what leadership really looks like

Footballers have shown their determination to carry on taking the knee for racial justice. That’s brilliant news. Gareth Southgate and his open letter to England fans has shown more leadership in his little finger than in the entire body of Boris Johnson as he flounders on the beaches of Cornwall.

Garteh Southgate’s open letter to England fans

The Tories and their racist supporters claim that they are against Taking the Knee because BLM is “Marxist”. The truth however is that BLM is a movement not a single organisation. In the UK there are literally hundreds of BLM organisations of different sizes, many of which, such as ourselves (BLMM) are not affiliated to BLM UK.

But nevertheless BLM UK is the ‘official’ organisation affiliated to the US body and maybe some of its members are Marxists or sympathetic to Marxist ideas. So what? Certainly the US group’s policies link the fight for racial justice to wider issues of social justice such as the fight against sexism or for Palestinian rights. We think that is to be applauded not vilified in a latter-day McCarthyite witchhunt.

However, whatever the policies of BLM UK, or of the individual views of the US founders or the organisations stated aims, BLM is much bigger than any single group – it is a movement with many different and competing political ideas. Those who Take A Knee or join protests for racial equality are making a statement against racism.

All such actions matter because they help to isolate and push back the racists. Unfortunately Boris Johnson and his racist government has sought to deliberately bolster not just booing racists but the Nazis that are amassing weapons in this country as they plot and plan to spread their hate-filled message with racist terrorism.

The best answer the England football team can give to the the racists within and outside government and across Europe is to bring football home.

Met police BAME recruitment will fail because of racism

The institutionally racist London Met police introduces its so-called “race action plan” today, and a key recommendation will be that 40% of new recruits must come from black and minority ethnic (BAME) backgrounds.

Unfortunately, however, the head of the London police, Commissioner Cressida Dick, remains in denial about racism in the force.

At a recent select committee parliamentary hearing on the police’s outrageous racial profiling seen in its rampant and ineffective (from the point of view fighting or preventing the commission of crimes) stop and search policies, Dick claimed the disproportionate number of black people being stopped was “because they committed more crime”, despite evidence to the contrary.

Netpol highlights over-policing of BLM protests

In addition, a report this week from from Netpol, a network of police monitoring groups, has discovered what we already knew – the BLM protests were over policed by Uk police.

Violent incidents were almost not existents around the country and when some scuffles with police happened in London it was in response to police actions, such as when they charged horses into peaceful protesters on Whitehall.

Police more violent towards black people

Not only are black people disproportionately stopped and search, the police also use more violence when doing so than the average for society as a whole.

Recruitment of officers from minority backgrounds has increased markedly in recent years, but that has made no difference to the institutional racism with the ranks of the Met. This is no surprise – it is the institution that is the problem.

Individual police officers can no doubt be “non-racist” or even “anti-racist” but the culture and operational practice of the police is the problem and that stems from the nature of the work they do. Policing is about maintaining the rule of those at the top of society and racism is a useful divide and rule stratagem.

Police are more racist than rest of society

Add to that the fact that we live in a racist society, it is not surprising that the police are racist. But the key point here is that the police do not just reflect society – they are the worst of society. The oppressive nature of their job leads them to operate in a fashion that presupposes that working-class people commit more crimes and that black people as part of that, are the worst offenders.

So when shocking crimes such as the ignoring of fire regulations that led to the installation of flammable cladding to blocks of flats, such as at Grenfell in west London, leading directly to the deaths of at least 81 people, not a single person has gone to prison or even been prosecuted.

So what are the chances of the police hitting their 40% target for black and minority ethnic new recruits? Zilch. The police are uniformly hated in the black community for good reason.

BLM movement puts Met police on the back foot

But the fact that the Met police are talking about a “race action plan” is because of the power of the mass movement on the streets that took hold in the BAME mobilisations – supported by hundreds of thousand of white allies – behind Black Lives Matter summer.

The police have been forced to do some window dressing, but behind the scenes nothing much will change.

Instead, we need to strengthen the movement on the streets and in our communities and social organisations as our best defence against police racism.

We need to get to a situation where every time they stop and search a black youth in London, they are met by a surrounding throng of concerned citizenry challenging their behaviour.

Met police BAME effort set to fail

Having more black faces in the police will make no difference. Just as in the US where there are plenty of black officers in police forces, it hasn’t stopped the continuing reign of terror by the police there. Indeed, whole police departments in the inner cities are supposedly run by black politicians – from police chiefs to attorney generals – but the racist murders by police still take place daily.

Dr Adam Elliott-Cooper on the Netpol report into over-policing of Black Lives Matter protests in the UK

Read more on the case for scrapping Section 60 – the powers that allow police to apply draconian laws to whole borough so they don’t even have to provide a reason for stopping people. The number of such stops are on the rise in the big cities, especially London and the Birmingham.

Police arrest 14-year-old, youth workers – Colindale fights back! Join Tottenham BLM protest on Saturday

Police have arrested at least five people including two youth workers after an outrageous raid in Colindale in the north London borough of Barnet.

Young people from the 4FrontProject were helping do their bit to promote the Tottenham BLM protest at the police station.

The police dragged youth workers along the ground in a violent and totally racist and oppressive outburst of policing, even by the Metropolian police’s standard.

The confrontation with the police all began with the arrest of a 14 year old and the arrival of at least six police vans of territorial support group heavies.

The police deliberately escalated the situation and young people gathered at the police station to force the release of those arrested.

Andre, one of the arrested and organiser of the 4FrontProject event didn’t get home until late evening. All those arrested have now been released. One person has a broken wrist.

Andre has led campaigning work to expose the ‘Gang Matrix’ and the way the police use it to justify their victimisation of black youth.

This outrage will be met with a protest at Tottenham police station against racist policing that had been previously planned, and 4FrontProject were helping to build.

Temi spoke to the Guardian:

Temi Mwale, director of the 4Front Project, which works with young people on the Grahame Park estate, used a PA sound system to berate officers inside the station. “We tried to de-escalate the situation, I actually think it was going well,” she said. “But at some point, someone … decided it would be appropriate to send four, five huge vans full of hundreds of you, to start dragging community workers across the floor.” more

Temi Mwale
Members of the 4Front Project

BLM Protest at Tottenham police station
– Saturday 8 August, 1pm

Protest called by Monitoring Project and others.

Scrap Section 60 – Briefing