Socialist Worker

Ukip comes under fire from angry anti-racist protesters in Glasgow

Campaigners get set to take on Farage with a demonstration at Ukip’s conference in Doncaster, reports Sadie Robinson

Issue No. 2421

Anti-racists from both sides of the referendum debate stood up to Ukip in Glasgow on Friday of last week

Anti-racists from both sides of the referendum debate stood up to Ukip in Glasgow on Friday of last week (Pic: Duncan Brown)


Ukip leader Nigel Farage had to scurry in and out of a side door to avoid protesters in Glasgow on Friday of last week. He was speaking at a Ukip rally against Scottish independence.

Up to 150 mainly young people joined the demonstration against him.

The massed ranks of the British media hoped to get a story of independence campaigners intimidating those on the pro-union side. Their hopes were dashed as anti-racists chanted, “Yes or No, Ukip has got to go.”

Samuel Cooke was on the demo. He told Socialist Worker, “Farage is not welcome—he’s just a racist bigot.

“Having people here both from the Yes and No sides shows there is unity against the right wing. Whether there’s independence or not, it’s about challenging their hate.”

Ukip is set to hold its national conference in Doncaster later this month. The Stand Up to Ukip campaign has called a demonstration.

Samuel added, “I hope there is a big protest in Doncaster against Ukip—it has to be challenged.”

Transport is booked to take anti-racists to the demonstration from towns and cities across Britain. 

Blame

Campaigners at a Stand up to Ukip meeting in Manchester on Monday of this week spoke about why they want to take on the racists. Karen, a CWU union member, said, “Farage has jumped on Islamophobia to stoke up fear. But for Ukip it’s all about blame—they have no solutions.”

Chrissie argued that the fight against Ukip was linked to other struggles to stop austerity and Tory cuts.

“It’s crucial that ordinary people mobilise against Ukip,” she said. “Ukip aims to whip up racism, but we can’t be divided in the fight against cuts.”

PCS union member Maurice stressed that, “The challenge to the trade union movement is to get out and campaign,” he said. “I want to be part of a trade union campaign against Ukip. Otherwise I think they will make gains in the north west.”

Ukip hopes to capitalise on disillusion with the three main parties and whip up anti-immigrant racism. 

It is throwing resources into getting former Tory Douglas Carswell elected as the first Ukip MP in a by-election in Clacton set to be held on 9 October.

And next year Farage will fight to be elected MP in Thanet South, Kent.

The anti-immigrant racism that the main parties spout will help Ukip get a hearing. But it’s also clear that there is potential to build a serious campaign against it.

Join the protest against Ukip, Saturday 27 September, assemble 12 noon, Sir Nigel Gresley Square, Doncaster, South Yorkshire. More info at standuptoukip.org

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