17_august_2015A letter a day to number 10. No 1,181

Monday 17 August 2015.

Dear Mr Cameron,

Something is happening in this country, something very important and it’s something that all right wing politicians of all colours would do well to pay attention to because it is not going to go away even though it has been successfully suppressed for a long while.

One of the reasons I took it upon myself to write these letters is because, as a community and youth worker of some experience, I am aware that if all is not well with my neighbour, all is not well with me. It is not hard to see that we are all impacted by others in ways both great and small. No matter how insular a life we may lead we cannot avoid being impacted and influenced by others. One glaringly obvious example is homelessness. Whatever our personal response to homelessness is, hostile, disturbed or supportive, we are affected.

When George Osborne asked back in 2012, ‘Where is the fairness, we ask, for the shift-worker, leaving home in the dark hours of the early morning, who looks up at the closed blinds of their next door neighbour sleeping off a life on benefits?’, he set a dehumanising narrative that you have been pursuing even since. Iain Duncan Smith revealed the same attitude when he told the House of Commons that the DWP called people on benefits ‘stock’.

Dehumanisation reduces the capacity to care, it is a way to insulate ourselves from concern for the well being of others. That you and your party use it as a political tool and weapon says everything about you and nothing about those you attack. The use of the language of dehumanisation seems to be most prevalent in right leaning people and organisations, which is why the Daily Mail makes full use of it to promote its right wing bigotry, hatred and social division. The Mail only has to put ‘immigrant’ or ‘scrounger’ in a headline to attract those who revel in self righteous moral indignation at the expense of others.

Socialism has at its heart dignity and respect, that is what draws thousands of people to gatherings across the nation to listen to and support Jeremy Corbyn. He expresses his humanity and speaks to the humanity of each person in the room, he is inclusive and at all times behaves with dignity and respect, treating each person with dignity and respect. Ultimately humanity will not be denied, it’s in our DNA, it can be over shadowed, even occluded, but it remains no matter how well hidden inside us. It is the heart of who we are. Jeremy Corbyn has put dignity and respect back where it belongs, front and centre in all his policies and through his personal presence and behaviour.

Life matters, Mr Cameron, people matter, and you are paid by us to serve the people not just the financial markets and the narrow interests of wealth. You exclude us at your peril.

http://www.newstatesman.com/blogs/politics/2012/10/george-osbornes-speech-conservative-conference-full-text

http://www.iainduncansmith.org.uk/content/universal-credit-0

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