When I posted my comment on facebook the morning after the USA presidential election a friend commented ‘cyclical, like the cicadas’.

It has been going on for some time in France. Germany and Belgium experienced it after the recent terrorist attacks. The UK has watched it growing in elections, most strongly in England, and it ended up with Brexit. Now North America has experienced it.

I can see that if someone attacks you or threatens you, you become wary of them. When does an odd comment become a regular saying? How often does a regular saying have to be repeated before it becomes real in people’s heads?

When UKIP started out here most of us could hear their rhetoric for what it was. When did it become socially acceptable for so many people to start agreeing with them? It’s all very well waking up the day after the election and saying ‘we didn’t want him elected, it was just a protest vote’. Enough people blindly vote the same way and you get a government you have to live with for the duration of that term.

Here in Scotland we have the Tories as the main opposition to the government. That is going well! It genuinely worries me that when people feel stressed, pressured, undervalued that they turn to the whisperings of the far right. It seems remembering what the far right are capable of is reserved for one week a year where we can wrap it up as remembering our war dead without remembering the atrocities our fore fathers suffered. What does it say to you when the media (who have played their part well in this) transmit pictures of President Elect Trump with Nigel Farage MEP? Not even an elected head of state. A member of a parliament he openly despises?

I realise that the people who are suffering the most are the ones who have low paid jobs, work unsocial hours, long hours or have more than one job. I know your personal time is precious. The only way to make sure the government are going to look out for you is to get involved. It doesn’t have to be through a political party. Something in the community that your family is involved in. Community groups have power, they can interact with elected politicians at all levels and say what their community wants and needs. You won’t always get what you want when you want it but your voice will be heard. Being involved with others in moulding your community is a far better way to have your say than closing your eyes at the polling station and hoping that the person you put your cross against doesn’t get elected.

A timely piece circulating in social media this week


Fascism: I sometimes fear…

“I sometimes fear that

people think that fascism arrives in fancy dress

worn by grotesques and monsters
as played out in endless re-runs of the Nazis.
Fascism arrives as your friend.
It will restore your honour,
make you feel proud,
protect your house,
give you a job,
clean up the neighbourhood,
remind you of how great you once were,
clear out the venal and the corrupt,
remove anything you feel is unlike you…
It doesn’t walk in saying,
“Our programme means militias, mass imprisonments, transportations, war and persecution.”
Michael Rosen