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From The Socialist newspaper, 28 February 2018

Stormzy is right to slam Tories for Grenfell

For an independent working class inquiry

Justice for Grenfell, photo M Finch

Justice for Grenfell, photo M Finch   (Click to enlarge)

Marvin Hay, Waltham Forest Socialist Party

2018 has got off to a great start for young, black, working class artists. Daniel Kaluuya of Get Out and Marvel's Black Panther scooped the Bafta for best newcomer, and grime artist Stormzy scooped not one but two Brits.

Stormzy could have been any one of the 71 killed at Grenfell Tower. When he took the stage, he correctly called out Theresa May and put the blame at the door of the government and the austerity agenda.

The prime minister replied by saying "Grenfell was an unimaginable tragedy." But it wasn't "unimaginable." A residents' group at the tower had been warning of the fire risk for years.

And the Daily Mail, in response, expounded that Stormzy had "happily benefited from the healthcare, housing and education opportunities the government, whether Tory or Labour, has provided."

It asked if he could "show a scintilla of gratitude to the country that offered his mother and him so much? Instead of trashing it."

This shows the contempt in which the establishment holds the working class. We are not allowed to pass judgment on the system that bloats the bosses on our labour.

The Mail's further implication is that immigrants and their descendants are somehow under some sort of contract of uncritical gratitude that renders them impotent in the face of the establishment's continued attacks on pay, housing and access to education.

In calling out Theresa May, Stormzy correctly made the issue one of politics. The Socialist Party demands justice for all the lost souls of Grenfell.

We fight for safe, genuinely affordable housing for all, with an end to cuts and privatisation.

The trade unions have the resources and authority needed to launch an independent inquiry, led by surviving residents, that shifts the focus from defending the establishment to getting the real answers and justice for all those who perished.

Stormzy reminded the world that what happened wasn't just a freak accident or simple tragedy. It was a predicted consequence of underfunding, overpricing and rampant profiteering.

It was a result of capitalism, and Stormzy was right to use this platform to help ensure the world never forgets.

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The coronavirus crisis has laid bare the class character of society in numerous ways. It is making clear to many that it is the working class that keeps society running, not the CEOs of major corporations.

The results of austerity have been graphically demonstrated as public services strain to cope with the crisis.

The government has now ripped up its 'austerity' mantra and turned to policies that not long ago were denounced as socialist. But after the corona crisis, it will try to make the working class pay for it, by trying to claw back what has been given.

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In The Socialist 28 February 2018:


What we think

Corbyn's customs union dividing line: now stand firm for pro-worker Brexit


Socialist Party news and analysis

Save Our Square occupation: "This land is our land!"

Three major West Wales hospitals could close

Corbyn didn't collaborate with Stalinism - but with Trotskyists against it

Stormzy is right to slam Tories for Grenfell

KFC delivery crisis: make the bosses pay, not the workers!


International Women's Day

Resist the Tory war on women


Workplace news and analysis

Workers strike back!

Lecturers strike around country in defence of pensions

University bosses rocked - strikes can save staff pensions!

Unite victory in EDF meter workers' union recognition fight


Labour

Corbynism shows 'Clause IV' still relevant a hundred years on


Socialist Students

Socialist Students conference highlights successful work

200 years of Marxism meeting


International socialist news and analysis

United States: young people demand change after latest mass shooting


Socialist Party campaigns

'Anti-austerity' Bristol Labour passes 34 million cuts budget

Newham: teaching workers and parents determined to halt academies

Building fund appeal: Behind the scenes at the Socialist Party office

Mary Jackson: funeral and memorial meeting

Union-led campaign beats Blairite attacks on homeless

Belper hospital threatened

Selling the Socialist in Stoke


Opinion

What's behind the surge in eating disorders?

The Socialist inbox

Socialist anti-war exhibition opens in Kingston


 

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