Sunday, March 30, 2008

Southall Black Sisters and the unmasking of the real Tory Party

My pal Yasmin Whittaker Khan has an important article in today's Mail on Sunday about Tory Ealing's decision to cut funding for Southall Black Sisters. The article speaks for itself, but it certainly raised for me the specter of the reality of a possible future Tory Government and its presumed priorities. The warm and cuddly sheep's clothing that David Cameron is trying to wrap himself in is doing a reasonable job of hiding the wolf that is the reality of his party's values and priorities. Whilst the plaintiff cry of Neil Kinnock in 1983 anticipating a further Tory term - I warn you not to be ordinary, I warn you not to be young, I warn you not to fall ill and I warn you not to grow old, may equally be an epitaph for New Labour, were there a future Tory Government perhaps we should add - I warn you not to be black - I warn you not to be an asylum seeker - I warn you not to be disabled.........and if the experience of some of my friends is anything to go by, I warn you not to be gay.

True equality is never about "anyone can come here" it is about an honest recognition of the impact of discrimination and an appreciation that whilst we may all be equal, we are all also different, with vastly differing needs. To try to pretend anything else is a bit like pretending all disabled people use wheelchairs and all you need is a ramp and you have met your obligations under the DDA.

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