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The Majesty Of Lady Di: The People Of Hackney's Princess

09/06/2017 09:07 | Updated 09 June 2017
Bloomberg via Getty Images

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Gurrrrrrrrrrrl.

The last 24 hours have been fraught. From the first sickly-sweet Exit Poll surprise on Thursday evening, those of us insomniacs who stayed awake to watch proceedings have had their existence punctuated by a series of heart-in-mouth, ribcage thumping, sick-making moments. Our lives have been dominated by doubt, dread and finally, by the dawn - a wonderful, manic sort of hope.

Theresa Mayfly done gone and hung herself, and the Conservative party's credibility is shot to shit.

This is not necessarily reason to celebrate just yet. Ain't nobody know what kind of hung parliament will manifest out of this Hunger Games-esque madness, but we can make some dismal guesses. The pound will plummet in this period of instability, Britain will become a slightly embarrassing oddity in Europe, the estranged, newly impoverished nephew who frittered his birthright on magic Brexit beans. Tresemmé will be under immense pressure to resign, but Labour lost the election and can't govern alone. Avuncular slug Boris will no doubt ooze his way out of the dank recesses of the Tory party to try and take his place at the forefront. We can sort-of rejoice in the tremendous turnout (turrrrnt up) of young people, the tenacity of Corbyn, the Lazarus-like rise of the left. But realistically it is all too too soon to call and way too soon to celebrate.

AND YET.

Amidst all of this confusion there is one story closer to my achy breaky left-leaning heart than all the others - and that is the VINDICATION of the misogynist media's favourite whipping boy - Diane Julie Abbott.

Of late, the racialised, sexualized bullying of Britain's first black female MP has reached unprecedented levels, and has become the preferred pastime of not only her political enemies, but also the papers, pundits, and general public - who lazily recycle epithets like 'Diane Abbott can fuck off' and 'She's an imbecile' without ever really engaging with Diane as an MP. Only a minority of public figures have been moved to speak up.

When DA announced she was bowing out briefly from campaigning because of ill-health, she was of course subjected to skepticism about her condition, adding heaped insults to injury. But I, for one, wasn't surprised. After thirty years of tirelessly building up Hackney with one hand and battling combined sexism and racism with the other, it's a miracle this woman's spirit and sanity weren't entirely eroded - it's no wonder her health has suffered.

Butbutbut.

On Thursday night AUNTY INCREASED HER MAJORITY in Hackney North and Stoke Newington by over 11 THOUSAND.

She won a stunning 75% of the vote.

To borrow the words of Beyoncé - as we all are wont to do from time to time- Y'ALL HATERS CORNY.

As Lady Di herself said in her victory speech - resplendent a red power pantsuit - the Conservatives ran this campaign on the "politics of personal destruction". But ultimately, the British people looked past that. Certainly, the people of Hackney have - looked past that and now we see in Abbott possibly the most spectacularly consistent constituency MP of all freaking time.

On Wednesday, in the wake of Diane's announcement of ill health, and furious at Facebook, I and a friend called Tony set up a GoFundMe to send Diane Abbott a CARE PACKAGE. We spent six hours figuring out how to edit Abbott's face onto an illustrated gif of Beyoncé, wrote feverish copy, promised to fill the box with assorted balms of black British womanhood and - after this had been done - to donate any extra money to Hackney-based charities.

IT. BLEW. UP.

We raised 2.5 grand in less than 24 hours and at the time of writing we are resting dazedly on £3, 374.

We got much more than we ever could have expected - sweet altruistic angels offering to donate candles, to do Diane's ironing, making individual donations of as much as 300 pound.

So far we've settled on two charities to support: LGBTQ+ youth charity Project Indigo and social inclusion/intervention project The Crib.

The campaign has gotten little flickers of hate from self-righteous keyboard warriors too lazy to read the summary and educate themselves about the causes we're supporting, but the overwhelming response has been that of love and solidarity for a human being who's worked tirelessly for Hackney, and for Hackney itself. Diane Abbott did good by her people, and her people have taken care of her.

If you can, show your love to the DIANE ABBOTT CARE PACKAGE and make it rain on Hackney (to the tune of a £5000 target). We've got a little ways to go yet. Please help us get there.

DONATE

It may be too soon to celebrate for the state of the country. But in the meantime? To celebrate hope, Hackney, and Diane Abbott?

Imma go run rapturously through fields of wheat.

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