angrysampoetry

the foundations of oppression can't be plucked up without the anger of a multitude

Archive for the ‘Opinions’ Category

On the Limits of Privilege

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Privilege

Amongst people privileged enough to have discussions on social media about abstract concepts, discussions of privilege is a la mode. A quick rifle through its usages on today’s Twitter, turns up the following (spelling and punctuation retained as originally posted):

  • a Latina woman complaining about the colourism of “white/light latinxs” within Latin communities:

“they chose tha privilege they live with instead of bein part of our community” [150 likes, 75 retweets]

  • a white person sarcastically complaining that white people can’t do anything without a black person calling them out for racism:

‘So one of my coworkers got up and apparently went crying to the principal about me. Why? Because I took a can of coke out of the fridge before she could get to it. She said I made her uncomfortable & embarrassed with my blatant white privilege’ [46 likes, 13 retweets]Oxford so white Read the rest of this entry »

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Written by angrysampoetry

November 26, 2017 at 8:40 pm

Poem for National Poetry Day 2017: Whom Do We Thank for Women’s Conferences? – Ama Ata Aidoo, 1992

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Whom Do We Thank for Women’s Conferences?
Ama Ata Aidoo, Dangaroo Press 1992

Ama Ata Aidoo is a Ghanaian poet, the “first published African woman dramatist”, a title she gained for her Dilemmas of a Ghost play that she wrote as an astonishingly mature 21 year old. This poem comes from her collection ‘An Angry Letter in January’, published 30 years after that play was written.ama-ata-aidoo-2 Read the rest of this entry »

Written by angrysampoetry

September 28, 2017 at 11:13 am

Corbyn, the IRA, Hamas and Terror

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In 1961, at the age of 87, philosopher Bertrand Russell was sentenced to seven days imprisonment for his involvement in CND protests. Fellow defendant Christopher Logue describes Russell’s exchange with the magistrate who sentenced him:

Mr. Reece: “It is a sad thing for a man of your age, my Lord, to be taking part in these activities.”
Russell: “Your Worship, I came here to save your life. But having heard what you have to say, I do not think that the end justifies the means.” (From Prince Charming)Bertrand Russell CND committee of 100 Read the rest of this entry »

Written by angrysampoetry

June 4, 2017 at 11:24 pm

Why a Corbyn-led Labour Government would be better for nearly everyone, even the radical left. Part 1b: Race and Immigration, questions for the radical left

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This is Part 1b of a series of articles around the UK General Election. You can find the introduction to the series here.

The Left has basically won on the question of Austerity. It has managed to convince people that the stripping back of state provision and selling off of state assets was not done to reduce the deficit but rather out of political considerations: to enrich the rich, transferring wealth upwards. Under the Conservatives, the deficit has increased and they are not in the least bit concerned because that was never their aim in the first place. Despite some fluctuations, Britain’s external borrowing (debt owed to creditors outside the UK) remains above 6,000,000 million pounds, up by another 500,000 million pounds since the Tories came to power.[13]

No borders posterHowever, on the question of immigration, the Left has still to find an answer that can convince the population. “No borders”, is more than a political slogan, it is the only ethical position on the subject. To assert the right to residency of some people but not others has no moral basis other than a fascist-style racial supremacy that posits an arbitrary ‘ethnicity’ (either ‘Anglo-Saxon’ or ‘white’) as the basis of belonging or a feudal-style ‘right of conquest’. ‘We were here first’, runs the latter argument. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by angrysampoetry

May 30, 2017 at 1:39 am

Why a Corbyn-led Labour Government would be better for nearly everyone, even the radical left. Part 1: Race and Immigration

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This is Part 1 of a series of articles around the UK General Election. You can find the introduction to the series here.

If you are an actual bricks-through-windows racist, pro-marital rape misogynist or a castrate-the-gays homophobe, than Corbyn is not the one for you. But nor are any other of the parliamentary parties, so we can leave that little unpleasant band of brothers to their own nasty devices.  For the rest of the population, fed on a diet of slanted, and sometimes entirely fictitious media stories, there are a few who are concerned about immigrants destroying British values and traditions. One might wonder who really has time to mourn the decline of Morris dancing, Sunday school and suet pudding, but beneath this apparently empty debate about abstractions there are real concerns. Many link immigration with a loss of jobs and there is a reality that standards of living for much of the population has seen a real decline since the 1980s. This decline accelerated after the financial crash of 2007/08, meaning that “between 2007 and 2015 in the UK, real wages – income from work adjusted for inflation – fell by 10.4%.”[1] making Britain, Portugal and Greece the only three of twenty-nine countries in the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) to see a wage decrease. Coupling this with an erosion of welfare provision has produced increases in homelessness[2], temporary accommodation[3], foodbanks[4] and suicide[5].food bank Read the rest of this entry »

Written by angrysampoetry

May 29, 2017 at 7:20 pm

Why a Corbyn-led Labour Government would be better for nearly everyone, even the radical left. (INTRO)

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Finally we have found a topic about which it is as hard to have a sensible, reasoned debate as the issue of Israel-Palestine. Over Christmas, I spent two weeks with my good friends Becca and Joey in Cape Town. On most topics – artistic, emotional, political – we are in broad agreement and differences are amiable and argued out constructively. This remained true for my whole trip until, during an hour’s drive to their friends’ place for Christmas lunch, we started talking about Jeremy Corbyn. Voices were raised, conversation was heated and turn-taking went out of the window and into the blue of the Southern Atlantic.

Over lunch, our hosts, having been informed of my Corbyn sympathies, mocked me as a crazy radical. Corbyn seemed to them to be some madcap, far-left maverick. These were people who were kicked out of the ANC in the 1980s for being too communist. And it is not only they who see Corbyn as a symbol of crackpot leftism, witness also Barack Obama’sCorbyn on a bike message of support for Bernie Sanders in December last year:

“I think people like the passion that Bernie brought, but Bernie Sanders is a pretty centrist politician relative to … Corbyn or relative to some of the republicans.”[1] Read the rest of this entry »

Written by angrysampoetry

May 21, 2017 at 4:33 pm

Some Books I read in 2016

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As 2016 draws to a close, I thought I’d mention some of the books I read this year. I tend to have three things on the go at once: prose, poetry and non-fiction – so the selections come from each of those sections, although two of the writers transcend those boundaries.

Prose:

Lux the Poet  – Martin Miller, 1998. (Thanks Jan.)martin-miller Read the rest of this entry »