Building the movement, fighting the fascists

Today, members of Liverpool Antifascists took to the streets to deliver the message of working class unity against fascism to those areas targeted by the BNP.

As with previous times we have went out, the reception we got from local residents was positive. The only time we faced anger was when people mistakenly thought we were the BNP, displaying a heartening will to make a stand if they thought fascists were in the area. Increased participation in these actions by people within their local areas also demonstrates that our work at building up a grassroots antifascist movement is paying off.

Last month, we held two benefit gigs. The first, in Bar Samui on the 17th, featured Talking To Strangers, Megan Walker and Friends, and Super-Cannes. A week later, we returned to the Pilgrim for a second folk night. As well as Fretless and the Ceilidh Band, the event featured an open mic slot which allowed others to get up on stage and show off their talents. In both cases, the events were roaring successes, engaging with the musical community whilst also raising the money to print the leaflets we are currently giving out. This type of activity also ensures that we remain close to the grassroots, building a movement of ordinary, local people rather than of politicians and bureaucrats.

The fascists have no credible response to this. On the Merseyside BNP twitter page, Gary Lucas posted a message saying that “The Pilgrim Pub will be hosting a fundraiser for violent communists from liverpool,” urging people to ring and complain. The pub reported receiving a single phone call, repeating the exact same message Lucas had posted, and got in touch with us as they were worried about harm coming to their staff from violent BNP activists. However, with assurances from Liverpool Antifascists that these idiots would not be allowed to cause trouble, the event went off without a hitch. Yet again, the BNP’s intimidation tactics failed.

Yesterday, members of Liverpool Antifascists held a stall at the Merseyside May Day Festival, and took part in the TUC march led by the excellent Liverpool Irish Patriots republican flute bands. Here, once again, we were able to engage with working class people who don’t want the far-right attacking their attempts to defend against cuts and job losses.

The BNP, of course, deride all trade unionists as “anti-British traitors” and have announced plans to cut public services, rage the retirement age, and attack the organised working class in their manifesto. They tried to mock and intimidate the last march by working people against capitalist attacks on our livelihood. This time, they couldn’t muster the will to show themselves, and the two goons who did show up – one wearing a swastika on his back – were quickly hauled off by police.

Whoever wins this election, the working class are going to face concerted attacks on jobs and services. As workers and trade unionists ourselves, members of Liverpool Antifascists recognise that, and our opposition to the BNP should not be read as an advocacy of Labour or any other party. How people vote is up to them, as is what they do to challenge the problems of the status quo. Certainly, though it is beyond our remit, Liverpool Antifascists supports the efforts of its members who organise within their own communities and workplaces to challenge the injustices prevalent in the current system. However, every single one of us recognises that the BNP gaining power is the absolute worst possibility available and must be challenged no matter what.

If you feel the same, then get involved. Drop us a line at and help us keep Merseyside fascist free!

Further reading:

Desperate BNP resort to obvious lies

Liverpool BNP Campaign in Disarray

Dissecting the BNP manifesto

Merseyside BNP: putting local people last

Postal workers: don’t deliver fascist garbage!

Fascists in profile: Karen Otty

BNP pulls activists away from election campaign on Merseyside

BNP candidates in Liverpool down by a third

Merseyside BNP’s new take on an old fiddle

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  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Liver Antifascists, Phil Dickens. Phil Dickens said: RT @LiverAF Building the movement, fighting the fascists […]

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