Sometimes we have to say something

Why all the articles I’ve posted below?  Well, sometimes we do have to say something….   I’m new neither to blogging nor to politics, but I am a bit outside the profile of your average www aficionado.  Not too many bloggers as yet are women of a certain age, perhaps even matriarchs of a sort, still determinedly if reflectively progressive and using the internet to try to make their point. So I hope here to help these matters along.  And I shall call myself ~ PinkPolitika.

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Do Young Momentum Enthusiasts Know That Jeremy Corbyn Really Wants Brexit?

In the New Statesman of 30 June Stephen Bush tells us that the position of Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn is of less relevance than (in Stephen’s view) the fact that most Labour MPs are pro-Brexit.   To my mind this confuses perceptions about how many Labour, and especially working class, voters have come to see and blame the European Union as an obstacle to their best interests, and the realities which most centre / left, even some Tory, MPs quietly understand but are, sadly, afraid to articulate.

Now, immediately, is the time to challenge Corbyn on his (and his close colleagues’) hostility to, and anachronistic view of, the EU.   We must insist, before the damage is irrevocable, that he comes clean about his perennial antipathy to Remain.   Most importantly, this task must be accomplished by Corbyn’s greatest admirers, the young people who have flocked to Momentum and who, along with many other Labour voters, believe Jeremy Corbyn will deliver them from Brexit….

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Brexit: Why we haven’t left the Labour Party (yet)

Main points of correspondence sent to Labour Party HQ in early February 2017 by Tony Burrage and myself (Hilary Burrage):

…   Currently we are extremely unhappy about our Labour membership – which is a great shame after some 40 years each of being in the Party. We both feel that the direction of the Party since the EU referendum has been disastrous, and every day convinces us even more strongly that our alarm is entirely justified.

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Stop #Brexit

Wnat follows below are some links to material and activists supporting #RemaIN.

I am fundamentally opposed to the UK withdrawing from the European Union. This is not simply a matter of economics (though that’s critical); it’s about the basic need for modern societies to work together progressively and closely in solving the many problems that collectively we face – including the challenges of security, migration, health, human rights, environment, food production and much else.

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Ed Miliband is concerned about immigrant workers; he should also worry about large, wealthy families and dwindling resources

Rick of Flip Chart Fairy Tales has written a very thoughtful piece about Ed Miliband’s recent speech on ‘ordinary’ people’s concerns around so-called immigrant workers.  Miliband and Rick are both absolutely right that this needs to be discussed; and also correct that if proper discussion doesn’t occur, improper (by which I mean unpleasant, unfair) commentary will fill the gap instead.

I have suggested in a response to Rick’s blogpost, however, that there’s also another dimension to be factored in, viz, population in the demographic sense, and the economic / resource demands especially of large, wealthy indigenous families.

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H.M.Government e-petition on FGM rejected

A number of us recently co-identifed as sharing very serious concerns about the continuing nightmarishly high levels of female genital mutilation (FGM or ‘cutting’) in the UK.  We therefore set about lobbying as citizens to ensure everything possible is done to bring this unthinkably grim child abuse to a halt.

The decision was made to set up an e-petition on the H.M. Government website, a website where signatories must indicate whether they are British citizens / residents – which factor we judged important, given that our demand is in effect that enough UK taxes be allocated to eradicate fully the practice of FGM in Britain. The wording of our e-petition was very carefully considered, and we also checked thoroughly that it did not duplicate any other petition on the website.

Imagine therefore our dismay that the petition has now been rejected with no apparently coherent explanation.

Is this a case, as some have suggested, of ‘protecting adult embarrassments, rather than protecting small children at risk of devastating harm’?  The full original text of the e-petition follows, along with the HMG (Cabinet Office) response; so you can decide for yourself…  But one thing is certain. There will be another attempt at this HMG e-petition very soon.

UPDATE! Please sign and forward this e-petition (for UK citizens), posted 25 June 2012 on the HM Government website:

STOP Female Genital Mutilation (FGM / ‘cutting’) in Britain

If you have a Twitter account and would like to draw more attention to this issue, please use the hashtag   #NoFGM  and follow  @NoFGM1.  Thank you.

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Campaigning will shift the climate, to end FGM in Britain

FGM (female genital mutilation or ‘cutting’) is embarrassing for us in the mainstream of British life even to consider; but it’s excruciating and debilitating for its young victims.

This is one topic where grown-up people must not permit their queasiness to over-rule their sense of decency.  FGM, both as a procedure and as procurement (whether in the UK or elsewhere) is unequivocally illegal; but as yet no prosecutions have been secured. And this despite the chilling fact that over 20,00 babies and girls in the UK are thought to be at risk annually.  That’s over 50 every day, or 2+ an hour, and the number rising.

Politicians and others in authority may shamefacedly shy away, but enough noise from the rest of will make it easier for them to do their job, protecting defenceless small children – the two British girls and babies who every hour are not receiving the protection to which they are so fundamentally entitled.

Please sign and forward this e-petition (for UK citizens), posted 25 June 2012 on the HM Government website:

STOP Female Genital Mutilation (FGM / ‘cutting’) in Britain

If you have a Twitter account and would like to draw more attention to this issue, please use the hashtag   #NoFGM  and follow  @NoFGM1.  Thank you.

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Age-related sexism: women candidates for council, mayor and commissioner elections?

Age-related sexism is a real obstacle to progress in getting more women to the political frontline, and it’s well time that political parties began to realise that and act upon it. The repeated failure in the UK and beyond to achieve more women in Parliament and elsewhere is a fundamental obstacle to meaningful universal suffrage.

Nonetheless, the continuing tendency is somehow to blame women themselves for not standing in sufficient numbers where there are winnable seats.  This is neither fair nor honest. Insofar as ‘fault’ is the issue, it lies rather more specifically with the present power elite (mostly male) than with ‘women’ in general.

The current belief is that ‘training’ will address the gender deficit in candidate lists, but this averts attention from some central issues.  One size does not fit all.  Inflexible programmes of induction can diminish rather than enhance the standing within their party of better experienced and qualified candidates; and this is especially true of mature women candidates entering the fray.

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