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Football Lads Against Fascism

FridgeMagnet

Administrator
FLAF were definitely involved in a pre-arrival scuffle on Whitehall outside the Moon Under Water - or at least some people were, who got surrounded by cops and shuffled off down Northumberland Avenue, and then brought out a FLAF banner.

It's a massive cliché about DFLA and Wetherspoons but the MUW does seem to be the Designated Fash Pub in the area whenever there's a march.
 

paolo

Well-Known Member
I had to dash there from another commitment and made some incorrect assumptions. I assumed the AFN would March from the BBC (?) to Parliament Sq and I assumed FLAF would be a bloc with the unions actually. I was wrong on both counts. I wouldn’t choose to be with the swappies.
I did’t notice swappies where I was. Admittedly my eyesight is turning to shit, but those placards used to be unmissable.
 

Red Sky

It was like that when I got here.
I've written at length on the FLA thread (or one of them, I can't remember which) about my theories but this isn't a sudden collapse - it's been like this for the last couple of marches. They're nakedly far right now and involve loads of the elements that people on the first couple clearly hated. When I think back they had "no flags" rules, Tommy Robinson was actively unwelcome, and marchers cheered anti-racist counter-protestors because "we hate racism too". Not saying that there weren't shitty elements there of course but people were saying "we don't want to be the EDL mark 2" and that's what this is now so it's not surprising they don't turn up any more - plus the intrusion of all the youtube wankers.
But the last one , under the "Free Tommy" banner saw a few thousand of them out.
 

The39thStep

Well-Known Member
Anti fascist numbers were actually down on the last big London demo, (ven with the recent arrival of FLAF and the formation of an RMT anti fascist stewarding group) so the real question is what caused such a collapse in the DFLAs numbers?

One answer might be demo fatigue coupled a lack of any clear objective or point to this particular outing.

This is being celebrated as a success (Fair enough) but if Tommy Robinson had been sent down at his last court hearing it might have been very different.
Yup he's the galvanising element.No Tommy no show. Perfect shit storm for the DFLA numbers down,, they've been on the back foot with people exposing fascists on their demos and social media pages , with Hickins daft Blood and Honour badge posting , a good period of 'discussion and debate' with them on social media , with FLAF leafletting football grounds before the demo etc. On the day itself a lot of broken promises about people turning up,FLAF calling them out in some of the pubs , generator malfunctioned so that had to have the speeches in another location and they faced a good turnout from anti fascists who split their march.
What we need to build on is a progressive working class narrative and some activity on the ground to what they claim to stand for/be opposed to .The FLAF statement about supporting genuine organisations that help rape and sexual assault victims, links with Soldiers for Peace and other progressive vet groups, organisations that represent all victims of terrorism etc is very welcoming. Well done to all and to think that one of the founding FLAC members used to post on here regularly.
 

Red Sky

It was like that when I got here.
Yup he's the galvanising element.No Tommy no show. Perfect shit storm for the DFLA numbers down,, they've been on the back foot with people exposing fascists on their demos and social media pages , with Hickins daft Blood and Honour badge posting , a good period of 'discussion and debate' with them on social media , with FLAF leafletting football grounds before the demo etc. On the day itself a lot of broken promises about people turning up,FLAF calling them out in some of the pubs , generator malfunctioned so that had to have the speeches in another location and they faced a good turnout from anti fascists who split their march.
What we need to build on is a progressive working class narrative and some activity on the ground to what they claim to stand for/be opposed to .The FLAF statement about supporting genuine organisations that help rape and sexual assault victims, links with Soldiers for Peace and other progressive vet groups, organisations that represent all victims of terrorism etc is very welcoming. Well done to all and to think that one of the founding FLAC members used to post on here regularly.
FLAF seem to have thrown their lot in with the AFN, which is good.
 

The39thStep

Well-Known Member
FLAF seem to have thrown their lot in with the AFN, which is good.
My mate said the AFN ( and others) stood their ground when the DFLA had a little surge. Anyone who supports the objectives of FLAF is welcome, what we also need is to recruit from new sources.
 
The STUR lot were on the static demo just north of Parliament Square. The front of the "unity demo" was all antifascist feminists.
Yes, I realised that the unity demo wasn’t going to be a unity demo in hindsight. Wasn’t there a joining of numbers last time? That’s partly why I made incorrect assumptions.
 

Sean

WTF? KMBCT
My mate said the AFN ( and others) stood their ground when the DFLA had a little surge. Anyone who supports the objectives of FLAF is welcome, what we also need is to recruit from new sources.
Would have gone along if I'd had anyone to go with. Reluctant to wander along as an individual unless I know I'm meeting people there and I've not been on here much or active in a group for a long time now. If anyone who knows me from the old AFA days can message me, I'll get along next time.
 

The39thStep

Well-Known Member
Would have gone along if I'd had anyone to go with. Reluctant to wander along as an individual unless I know I'm meeting people there and I've not been on here much or active in a group for a long time now. If anyone who knows me from the old AFA days can message me, I'll get along next time.
FLAF have a Facebook group and Twitter stream you can directly message them. A few old faces and lots of new ones
 

jimmer

libcom.org
It's amazing that a professional sociologist can't recognise that cultural markers of class are fluid and change over time, the idea the Unity demo looked "totally unconnected and unrelated to the British working class" is mad, I guess McKenzie doesn't pay much attention to the working class in London. Also, the idea FLAF looked like the DFLA is kind of insulting, on average FLAF's turnout was about 20-30 years younger than the DFLA's and considerably better dressed.

(edit: amended as per post below)
 
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Pickman's model

every man and every woman is a star
It's amazing that a professional anthropologist can't recognise that cultural markers of class are fluid and change over time, the idea the Unity demo looked "totally unconnected and unrelated to the British working class" is mad, I guess McKenzie doesn't pay much attention to the working class in London. Also, the idea FLAF looked like the DFLA is kind of insulting, on average FLAF's turnout was about 20-30 years younger than the DFLA's and considerably better dressed.
she's a sociologist, if it makes any difference
 

Smokeandsteam

Exiting the Vampire Castle
It's amazing that a professional anthropologist can't recognise that cultural markers of class are fluid and change over time, the idea the Unity demo looked "totally unconnected and unrelated to the British working class" is mad, I guess McKenzie doesn't pay much attention to the working class in London. Also, the idea FLAF looked like the DFLA is kind of insulting, on average FLAF's turnout was about 20-30 years younger than the DFLA's and considerably better dressed.
Yes, it would be if that was her argument. But it isn’t. Lisa McKenzie’s point is about cultural ‘capital’ not signifiers. These are entirely separate things.
 

Smokeandsteam

Exiting the Vampire Castle
If it was about cultural capital then why does she talk about how they look?
I don’t know.

My guess is because she’s angry and pissed off about possessors of social and cultural capital and the disproportionate influence they wield on the left and what that means for pro working class politics?
 

jimmer

libcom.org
I don’t know.

My guess is because she’s angry and pissed off about possessors of social and cultural capital and the disproportionate influence they wield on the left and what that means for pro working class politics?
So you're just speculating about what she means to object to my criticism of something she's actually written? It's a totally fair point to say there are people with social and cultural capital who wield a disproportionate influence on the left, I'd probably include academics in that group myself. I didn't read her piece as making that point though (admittedly I read it quite late last night). I thought she was just having a pop at the AFN demo based on a weak understanding of class.
 

Smokeandsteam

Exiting the Vampire Castle
So you're just speculating about what she means to object to my criticism of something she's actually written? It's a totally fair point to say there are people with social and cultural capital who wield a disproportionate influence on the left, I'd probably include academics in that group myself. I didn't read her piece as making that point though (admittedly I read it quite late last night). I thought she was just having a pop at the AFN demo based on a weak understanding of class.
No, I am speculating about why she briefly mentioned what the Unity demo looked like which is the question you asked. I’m very clear as to the central point she is making.
 

jimmer

libcom.org
No, I am speculating about why she briefly mentioned what the Unity demo looked like which is the question you asked. I’m very clear as to the central point she is making.
Fair enough, I still think she's wrong to describe a genuinely diverse crowd as "looking totally unconnected and unrelated to the British working class". The British working class, particularly in London is very diverse, it's not just white men.
 

Smokeandsteam

Exiting the Vampire Castle
I’d add that academics are definitely part of that group. And I am sure you know the campaign of vilification they have subjected LM to upto and including trying to get her sacked
 
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