WHAT would you do if you knew of an elderly lady on your street being terrorised?
An octogenarian on the brink of her 87th birthday, and yet there were gangs of hate-filled yobs hanging around outside her house hurling abuse at her. Abuse along the lines of: ‘I can’t wait until you die, so that I can dance on your grave’.
Now consider that said gang of yobs had declared they were terrorising that elderly lady in the name of Derbyshire – in the name of YOU, the Derbyshire Times readers – and every national news outlet in the country is trumpeting the fact that Derbyshire representatives are knocking up hateful t-shirts covered in slogans that practically kick said OAP into her grave.
It’s fairly certain you will recoil in disgust, and perhaps even try to put a stop to it.
This is what is happening at the Trade Union Conference in Brighton where t-shirts emblazoned with Baroness Margaret Thatcher’s tombstone are on sale, to raise money for Derbyshire Unemployed Worker’s Centre.
Suddenly the landscape shifts, and we’re not just talking about a frail old woman, we’re talking about ideological scars that cut thousands of families deeper than those outside of the coal mining community can ever imagine.
As the son of a coal miner – who was just four-years-old at the time of the coal miners’ strike – who has grown up playing for the local pit football team, socialised in the local miners’ welfare and benefited from all the spoils that having a well-paid father brought with it, I know precisely how much pain the politics of the era rained down on this area.
And I know for a fact there will be those who declare, ‘good on ‘em’ for making a stand down in Brighton, but surely there are ways and means of getting your point of view across without wishing death upon somebody’s grandmother?
I’d be interested to hear what people think on this one, and have set up an online poll to gauge whether or not you think it’s the right thing to do? So cast your vote!