‘Churchill was a racist!’

A non poetry post this month because i want to use my platform to express my support for Black Lives Matter and Anti-Colonial and Anti-Fascist action we are seeing taking place in response to the Murder of George Floyd (R.I.P).

I am wary of posting on social media for various reasons but the main being that growing up mixed race in a predominantly white area of the UK has made having conversations about race with (white) people like having an open wound picked. I feel exhausted by trying to have conversations about traumas with folk who cannot understand.

Yesterday the statue of slave trader Edward Colston was pulled down in Bristol and Churchill’s statue was tagged ‘was a racist’ and i support these actions. The vitriolic response i have seen from many on social media has prompted me to write this.

We have been taught a version of UK history that has suppressed inconvienient truths about ourselves as a nation. Churchill is a good example of this in our celebration of a genocidal racist as national hero (Bengal famine, Palestine).

We live in a racist country in a world affected by (British) racism. The structures of power in the world were founded by colonial racists. Capitalism continues these power structures in its exploitation of ‘developing nations’ in the ashes of colonisation and following its model.

If you defend police over those innocent people killed by them, if you say ‘all lives matter’ or condemn those clashing with the police, think about what position your viewpoint is coming from if this is what you choose to speak out about.

Our prime minister is a racist homophobe with an adviser behind him who openly believes in eugenics who has come into power off the back of program of austerity, fearmongering and scapegoating the vulnerable.

Our museums are full of stolen antiquities and we are taught we have the right to them. We are taught to see the British as a civilising force in the world but never more about what ‘civilising’ means.

Fascism doesnt start with bootboys it comes from the elites, its voted in, protected by law and it makes normal things we know are wrong.

If you disagree with this statement think about what side of history you want to be on.


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