Friday, 26 June 2015

Letter to Activists...

Written to Activists after a long week standing against Cuadrilla in Lancashire:
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Whatever happens - the hard work, honourable behaviour and honesty of those defending our communities is outstanding. Also a stark contrast to the manipulation, outright lies and despicable behaviour of some in our Council and our Government.
Sadly, it was this type behaviour that took me from my formerly lovely life of 'normality' - to take my first stand as an 'activist' via Occupy in October 2011. I just wanted to have a democracy I recognised as one and at the time, the government was bailing out banks and introducing austerity - so blatantly wrong I couldn't watch in silence any longer.
Fighting fracking became an urgent necessity due to the imminent threat and so I was drawn away from exploring, exposing and confronting the lies and hypocrisy of our clearly fraudulent system, that serves business interests - not human ones. Or so I thought...
Yesterday - I found myself back at the beginning. Any joy tarnished with the knowledge that fracking is another ugly and dangerous symptom of an uglier, more dangerous disease. I genuinely believe that our system of government has at some stage become so infested with private interests of big business - that it needs rescuing and reclaiming.
I never wanted this to be my life and don't expect any of you did - I miss my family time and whatever it was I used to talk about before this all happened... but there is no turning back, no exit door (all those have my granddaughter's face on them) because if WE don't see this through, what does the future hold for our children and theirs? Already, access to legal aid is diminished and with each new bill and law, the tools of democracy are taken away.
Wish there was a happy bit to this but currently there isn't - just more revelations of the ugly stuff. Oh, except...
Yesterday the police asked the drummers if they could play and they did - I have been harmed and witnessed such extreme brutality by some police forces during these past 4 years... but here in Lancashire, we're certainly a bit different!! Not only were they genuinely exceptional drummers - they showed themselves to be warm human beings.
There were some more 'extreme' activists (or certainly many of us knowing it could make us this way) there yesterday - we had spoken about how the community was FIRST taking every avenue democracy offered and ONLY when that failed would we be in the position to consider different reactions. Many were so shocked by the behaviour of our Lancashire police (in all the best ways) and I believe that everything we are doing is having a profound impact on the way 'activism' is being done too. We are ALL learning and there are little miracles along the way.
So for now, head down, deep breath and we plough on to Monday. Many exhausted supporters will be there showing the beautiful humanity that exists outside the Council... and doing all we can to lift spirits in any way possible. I cannot guarantee anything about what will be the response from outside on Monday, to whatever the vote brings - each activist is autonomous... here's hoping we can manage to get through and still smile at the amazing Lancashire police at the end of the day. I fear though that like our Councillors, their hands are tied and their actions will be dictated.
We each have played roles beyond our expectations and made connections that enrich us... we are strong in our unity and determination and when the crowd outside hear each speaker from the community groups over the PA - the admiration is loud and joyous. Thank you to all in this for your work, you make us so proud and set examples that change hearts and minds - maybe not always the ones you intended on though.
Much love, respect and admiration,
Tina heart emoticon