Skawiński (skawinski) wrote,


This past Saturday, only my third day off in March, was spent doing something very useful and compelling. I took part in my very first protest, attending the Unite for Europe march in London.

As advised by lupestripe I hooked up with a local group of Scousers who were travelling down to the capital by bus. Together we enjoyed several hours of travelling and chatting about politics, bashing Theresa May and David "Squishyface" Davis, as well as many other unrelated topics ranging from insulation and footy.

We arrived a tad late but were able to wait for the march to approach Marble Arch and then join in. After about an hour and a half of mostly standing and moving bit by bit we took off on our way down to Parliament Square.

While waiting had a good few conversations with people, the Scousers, some Germans and some fellow Poles too. Polish flags were very visible on that day, by my estimates probably third after the sea of EU flags. Apart from lots of others and some really imaginative and poignant banners.

On the way to Parliament Square I decided to scoot off and get to the front of the crowd where I was hoping to find Lupe, Wolfie and Geo. Wasn't successful at first but it was still fun walking along different people and joining in with the chants and such. Never done anything quite like it.

On the way to Parliament Square, down Whitehall, some guys opened played "All You Need Is Love" by the Beatles with the crowd singing along the way. And once we loaded up onto the square and speeches were already underway.

We had politicians, activists and regular people making their statements, and one in particular that caught my ear was by a Spanish nurse working for the NHS. Very personal, very powerful and relatable. Had some Poles on stage too, one of whom called Wiktor Moszczyński is a Londoner and book author who shared some interesting points. The was also David Lammy, and finally at the end we heard Nick Clegg.

To be honest, I do not expect any changes to be made through this protest. Yes, we had about 100,000 people in attendance but I would be surprised if the Tories even took notice of this gathering and the points raised.

Brexshit in all likelihood is going to happen regardless of what we say or do. But exercising our democratic rights felt fucking great. To come out there, in public, for everyone to see, and express my thoughts on the matter felt very elating. Being there with friends, and meeting other like-minded people felt encouraging.

I understand people have their reasons to favor Brexshit, and that's fine. I resent the fact that as a perm resident I had no voice in it despite belonging to the most affected group in the whole process. I resent the fact that the Leave campaign was largely based on half-truths and lies, like the infamous £350 million per week for the NHS, later refuted by the waste of air that is Nigel Farage himself as "not true".

A lot of people who voted Leave have been had, and biggest proponents of leaving the EU will not be the ones to suffer from the consequences - it will be the average Joe Schmo who was made to think kicking out immigrants, closing borders and making "new trade deals" will be the way forward. No it won't. It will most likely be the demise of this gradually less welcoming and open country with once huge possibilities.
Tags: britain
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