Politics doesn’t have to be boring. It doesn’t have to be endless A to B marches, dreary rallies full of power-hungry hasbeens or soulless celebrity benefit gigs that cost half a giro just for a ticket.
That’s not to say it’s always going to a barrel of fucking laughs. Standing outside a Maximus assessment centre with a banner in the freezing cold or getting up at 5am to join a picket line is desperately important. But a political movement that does not inspire or exhilarate will eventually run out of steam. And the bastards are not going away any time soon. We must not run out of steam.
Sometimes, by defying their rules, and acting collectively, we get to see a glimpse of what our lives could really be like – and that is a world worth fighting for. We should chase those moments because they provide the strength to do the hard stuff, which for a sadly increasing number of people just means staying healthy and alive.
Summer is coming. They can’t take that away from us. There is no better time to be out on the streets, and with anger against the Tories spreading throughout the UK there will be no lack of opportunity. The Daily Mail wants a Summer of Rage it would be a shame to disappoint them. But not on their terms. It should be a summer of having a fucking laugh at their expense as well.
Every time the rich see us weep they crack open another bottle of champagne. They want us starving if we don’t have a job, and miserable and worked half to death if we do. It is not just that they want to take away the health service and the welfare state. They want to turn our streets and cities, pubs, clubs, football grounds, anything they can find into their playgrounds and price us out. This enclosure of human pleasure means that joy can no longer be free, it is just for the rich now, or at least only those who can pay. Glastonbury Festival can only survive with a fence, security guards, coppers and eye-watering ticket prices because there isn’t a better festival down the road without all those things. Margaret Thatcher made sure of that 30 years ago this week.
So let’s start taking it back. All of it. The occupation of the Black Cap in Camden, one of London oldest gay cabaret venues and recently closed to make way for yet more luxury flats, is a fantastic start. The upcoming Central London demonstration on June 20th does not have to be a soul-destroying display of obedience and quiet acceptence, it can be as spiky and fun as people make it.
In just over a month Class War are holding a Fuck Parade in Camden where rampant gentrification is destroying what was once a thriving cultural, and largely working class corner of London. The event takes its name from an annual event in Berlin which sees thousands take over the streets to party and protest against the commercialisation of the city. Just like in Berlin, London’s history and culture are being destroyed in the name of greed.
According to one blogger, who reviewed last year’s event, the Berlin Fuck Parade “shatters the silence of all the newly-finished luxury blocks that dot the city’s streets, forbidding to the average Berliner despite being nearly empty.” The same shit is happening everywhere. Our resistance is global. Etc (puts the spliff down).
For full details of the Fuck Parade, being held on July 11th from 7pm outside Camden Tube, please join (and share the fuck out of) the facebook page. Or info here for non-facebook users.
The campaign to Save The Black Cap, which is not (yet) affiliated to the squatters are also on facebook and are holding a weekly vigil outside the venue on Saturdays from 1pm – 4pm.
A group has also formed to support Camden’s last remaining alternative venues by getting pissed in them – join the next Reclaim Camden pub crawl.
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