The Jury is out for Diane Abbott

The Jury Is Out for Diane Abbott 

After the recent uproar regarding Diane Abbott, and her redacted comments comparing different impacts around Race and antisemitism, there has been a void in news relating to her, and the initial damaging letter to the Observer. No mainstream television channel will offer up the in depth debate or discussion on matters of Race, and how it impacts different communities and individuals who suffer. Maybe it is time to call in the experts on these matters, Trevor Phillips or Tony Sewell, to provide the balanced and fair analysis of matters on everyone’s behalf. In fact, on second thoughts ‘Nahhh’, give them a miss on this one I think.

It is important for us to debate matters that concern us as Black people, not just on social media, but by using old school methods, such as meeting in halls, conferences, and other such like forums where we can thrash out progressive debates around a host of concerning matters. These environments are where issues will not be skewed without real challenge and explanation.

Diane, unfairly in my opinion, is fast becoming an MP renowned for her gaffes, than for her long and tireless efforts campaigning on many issues that are near and dear to many – including, and crucially on behalf of those in her constituency of Hackney North and Stoke Newington.

The so called anti-woke wicked warriors who are keen to dumb down the racism suffered by Black people at any given opportunity, are the same individuals who will be at the forefront of those determined to mobilise and target Diane Abbott. They are like a pack of hungry wolves attempting to kill off and damage her legacy.

A quick internet search will provide some evidence to support the fact that many have been looking for Keir Starmer to take action against Abbott for a variety of reasons. None more so than the fact she was a key ally to Jeremy Corbyn when he was the Labour party leader.

Harry and Meghan

So who is Diane Abbott?

She was the first black female MP, elected in 1987 to the Labour seat in Hackney, and is currently the longest serving black MP in the House of Commons. She obtained her Master’s degree in History at Cambridge University, and has held jobs in journalism and the civil service, broadcasting, and as a commentator.  She has been vocal on social justice issues, and has had her voice heard on the vexed issue of Stop and Search, and other issues around of race in general.

Diane would also become the first Black Labour leadership candidate, serve as the first Black shadow Home Secretary, and become the first Black woman to represent her party from the dispatch box during Prime Minister’s Questions (PMQs).

So what next for Diane Abbott?

Diane Abbott must have thoughts and plans about what she wants to do in politics from here on. But, it is the inquiry that will determine the real outcome, which could possibly lead to the expulsion of Diane from the Labour party. Keir Starmer appears to be determined to show that he is dealing with antisemitism within the Party, and is attempting to pivot and position himself, so as to have a clean slate for his new Labour Party in the run up to the next general election.

Key point to note on the matter of MP’s losing the whip, and expulsions, is that there have been a quite a few Conservative MP’s that have put there foot in it over the years on race issues. But, within a short period of time they have resumed work in their Party, and ‘happy days’ they are back working as per normal. All has been forgiven.

If Diane Abbott is kicked out of the Party and decides to sit as an independent candidate at the next general election, and Corbyn sits independently also, this could prove extremely awkward for the Labour Party. What if they both return with clear majorities? Could they not be thorns in the side of new Labour?

The abuse Diane has faced as a Black female MP is clearly off the scale, and it is a case of who feels it knows it. We do not actually consider the effects of this constant barrage of hate, the trauma, the anxiety, the hurt that she has experienced throughout the years. There is something different felt when you are in Black skin, something that if viewed with disdain. You simply cannot hide, not with a suit, not with make-up, not with your voice, not by any means, the physical characteristic is immoveable. It presents a real challenge for some to navigate the negativity that sometimes can be felt by those whose eyes, thoughts and actions, can present negative associations. But challenge them we must.

Harry and Meghan

Racism can be difficult to measure and compare…

The conversation is changing when it comes to race and racism, and we cannot say different groups suffer in precisely the same way. There are clearly some physical differences and also variable intersectionality elements that contribute to important differences between different groups, and communities, racial or otherwise.

But, my experience, intuition and foresight have enabled me to recognise some wicked intentions, around what is considered acceptable behaviours, and what is not, and also the benchmarking. The intoxication of information fed to associate what is bad with ‘black skin’ over many years, or even centuries has led to the inequitable measurement of punishments.

Racism can be difficult to measure and compare, it can be indirect, sometimes covert. Attitudes and behaviours can be altered, so maybe when it comes to difference, we should look to frame the differences, so that there is clarity, and clearer representation.

I am sure if we were to sit down with Diane Abbott and debate the issues around race in depth, we would get a truer more rounded, and intellectually informed rationale of the subject.

I am sure that Sir Keir Starmer feels that the next election is a done deal, a majority for Labour, as the Party shifts to the right.

Interestingly also, it has been stated that Kier Starmer has not acted on the recommendations in the ‘Forde’ report. This report highlighted bullying, racism and sexism within the Party – Why not? This matter along with pledges and promises being shifted, the moving of goal posts will not go unnoticed.

So don’t count your chickens just yet.




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