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We Must #ResistTrump

(Image: Bianca Jagger)

On Monday, February 20, 2017, thousands of people all over the UK will come together as part of a ‘Stop Trump’ national day of action, to demand that the government withdraw the invitation for a Donald Trump state visit. I will be addressing the rally in Parliament Square which starts at 6 pm. I hope you will join me there — or find your nearest rally. We must #ResistTrump. Our future depends on it.

The Prime Minister is ignoring the demands of 2 million people who signed a petition to cancel Donald Trump’s state visit to the UK. We want to let Theresa May know that she cannot silence the British people. We will make our voices heard.

I support John Bercow, Speaker of the House, who expressed his opposition to Trump delivering a speech to the UK Parliament. He said, ‘I feel very strongly that our opposition to racism and to sexism and our support for equality before the law, and an independent judiciary, are hugely important considerations in the House of Commons.’ To date Mr Bercow has received 3,227 letters of support for his stand.

I am deeply concerned at the recent ascent of fascism, racism and misogyny. Trump’s divisive policies are a threat to world peace. He is leading the United States into a dark era of isolationism; of contempt for human rights, for the rule of law and for civil liberties; where racism and prejudice are condoned; where sexual assault is endemic and committed with impunity; where climate change is dismissed as ‘just weather;’ where the divide between the one percent and the rest of the world is driven wider and wider in the name of profit and greed… Donald Trump will take us all down with him — unless we resist him.

The recent revelations have exposed the rot at the heart of the Trump administration. Michael Flynn was the third Trump advisor to resign over links to Putin. He will not be the last. Despite Donald Trump’s grand campaign promises, his administration is a foul political swamp. None of this has deterred Theresa May from making her Faustian pact in a desperate bid to secure a trade deal with the US.

During her recent US visit Theresa May was photographed, glowing, holding Trump’s hand. She refused three times to condemn Trump’s discriminatory executive order, signed hours after her visit, for a Muslim travel ban. Her silence made her complicit. It took thirty — six hours for Downing Street to release a weak response, saying the government “does not agree” with the executive order.

A Trump state visit would confirm to the world that Theresa May condones Trump’s policies. Many British people including myself, passionately oppose it. Last but not least, it will cost the British taxpayer more than 10 million pounds in policing alone.

Donald Trump is not the only devil that the Prime Minister is making deals with. The shambles of Brexit has left the UK desperate, forced to cling to unholy alliances with tyrants and authoritarian regimes.

After her US visit, Theresa May travelled directly to Turkey. She described President Erdogan as her ‘indispensable partner.’ Erdogan has committed a litany of human rights violations: he has imprisoned more journalists than any other world leader since the Committee to Protect Journalists began keeping records. Theresa May should have denounced him, not referred to him as a ‘partner.’ She hangs onto alliances with Saudi Arabia, Bahrain — countries with some of the worst human right records in the world. Theresa May has refused to stop selling precision guided missile munitions to Saudi Arabia: weapons that are being deployed in the unconscionable war in Yemen, often on hospitals and schools. There have been over 10,000 civilian casualties so far.

The Prime Minister seems to have forgotten the shameful example of Neville Chamberlain’s policy of appeasement before the Second World War. Her endorsement of totalitarian regimes is a betrayal of our moral principles and it puts the United Kingdom on the wrong side of history. I urge the Prime Minister to reconsider before it is too late. I urge her not to grant Donald Trump the honour of a State visit, to show global leadership, take a stand against fascism, and withdraw the UK government’s invitation to Trump.


Note: This piece was originally posted at The Huffington Post.

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