Friday, October 8, 2010

I think I’ll mostly be staying in...

Life is unexpectedly and rather unwelcomingly imitating art today. The last book I read (‘Portrait of the Mother as a Young Woman’) was set against a back drop of war and fascism, my currant read ‘The Hare With The Amber Eyes’ follows a Jewish dynasty across Europe and across the 19th and 20th century. Anti Semitism features as does the rise of fascism.

This is not my normal sort of post and for the most part I like to avoid politics here but this is on my doorstep and it would be crazy to ignore it.

Tomorrow (sat 9th) the English Defence League is having a static march in Leicester, anti fascist groups are planning a counter march and town is beginning to feel very tense. Previous EDL marches have ended in trouble and it seems we’re expecting the same. I’ve been here for a good few years and have never seen a fuss like this – shops and banks are electing to close for the day and windows in the city centre are being boarded up. Most the streets are closed to traffic, the police are asking people to stay away and a lot of buses are being re routed. We’re also getting over a 1000 extra police people.

Somehow I managed to remain oblivious to all this until yesterday but have now reached a state of mild paranoia in record time. I really hope that it’s a case of over reaction, but after events in other cities where the EDL have marched it seems the outlook is a little bleak for public order. Bleak as well that there seems to be a text campaign aimed at certain parts of the community designed to promote anger and radicalism.

It bothers me how much power these people have to disrupt our lives, and really bothers me that nothing seems to have been learned from still recent history. I’ve come to take it for granted that in day time give or take the streets are basically safe - realising that it might be a luxury is an unpleasant shock. On the bright side there have been, and are, a number of peaceful and peace promoting cross community events planned for Friday and Sunday. Saturday I’ll be staying at home – part of me wants to go out and scream for what I believe in, part of me is grateful for the instruction to stay out the way and out of trouble and that bothers me to.

The photo is one I’ve pinched from Hope not Hate and was taken in town this evening. They have asked for the city to support them by going lime green and the council have obliged with our multi coloured street lights.

No comments:

Post a Comment