Sharing struggles of others worldwide

Donald Trump demonstration, Leeds City Centre.'13 July 2018.  Picture Bruce Rollinson
Donald Trump demonstration, Leeds City Centre.'13 July 2018. Picture Bruce Rollinson
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I make no comment on Donald Trump but find it questionable as to why Hassun El-Zafar chose to publicly raise the highly controversial subject of his claimed association with ‘white supremacists’ and the Klu Klux Klan at the recent anti-Trump demonstration.

Such words, with their racist undertones, are known to incite hatred and division serving to undermine efforts to create harmony in these troubled times.

As an ex-University student, surely Hassun must have known this. He certainly knew how to unite the audience with his request that people chant ‘Wasteman’ (as in Trump is a) in response to his inflammatory remarks.

Bearing the words ‘Trump is a Wasteman’, a number of signs appeared at another demonstration in London. Pure coincidence?

Indeed, should recent mass demonstrations raise concerns about huge numbers of organised university students being transported, free of charge, around the country to swell the numbers and use the power of numbers to effect change through the ballot box, but what change?

The following comment on Brexit, made by a prominent member of their ranks, might offer a clue: ‘A generation which benefited from world peace, free education, free healthcare, affordable housing, free movement and free trade have robbed us of our futures.

“Well, we have an option, we can either sit here and talk or we can get out there, organise, mobilise and take our futures back’.

What arrogance to assume Brexiteers voted without consideration for the future of their offspring. How naive to believe the above benefits were free. They came at a cost of millions of lives and decades of struggle and sacrifice by ordinary people living in cities often seen through thick industrial smog. Men and women toiled for long hours and little pay, some in mills described as ‘hell-holes’, digging in the bowels of the earth or producing goods under terrible conditions, paying with their health and contributing from their wages to create the Welfare State supporting us all today.

England’s white working class history is not one of privilege but of subjugation and lifelong endeavour. Of workhouses, asylums, debtors prisons and constant struggle to survive, yet people fought to improve things for future generations.

Sharing the struggles of others around the globe, I doubt any one of them saw themselves as ‘supreme’.

Mary Steele

Deerlands Avenue, Parson Cross, Sheffield, S5