Unite Against Facism held a public meeting in response to the Qur'an burning in Gateshead earlier in the month
Thursday 14 October saw Unite Against Fascism (UAF) hold another public meeting in response to the Qur'an burning in Gateshead earlier in the month. The meeting was very positive with people coming together regardless of their political allegiances or religious faith.
The central theme of the meeting was unity, with UAF and attendees agreeing that any discrepancies on the left are overshadowed by the pressing threat from far-right fascists who continue to target our minority communities in verbal and physical attacks.
Laura Pidcock, a Community Education Worker for Show Racism the Red Card, spoke of the non-judgemental attitude that needs to be taken when challenging racism in our own communities. "When working with young people who present racist attitudes there seems to be an overwhelming sense of anger which they feel about their own situation, some young people are without opportunities, the frustration born out of this can easily be directed to minority communities this is complemented by the provision of scapegoats from the far right. Show Racism the Red Card aims to provide these young people with an alternative view, something which is urgently needed."
The meeting held in the Civic Centre was somewhat tainted by the presence of the English Defence League (EDL) outside the event. Although small in number (there were around 30 EDL supporters) the confidence they had to shout racist slurs in the face of a fairly large police presence is worrying and certainly not something that should be ignored.
Show Racism the Red Card encourages everybody to be involved in their own way in challenging racism, whether it is attending UAF meetings or being proactive in their own community; there simply is no time for apathy to the growing feeling of hate in pockets of our society.