Saturday 14 December 2019

St Andrews Day Anti-Racism/Anti-Fascism Rally 2019

On Saturday 30th November, Aberdeen joined with thousands of others across Scotland taking part in the St Andrews Day weekend of anti-racism/ anti-fascism activity.

In Aberdeen trade union, community and political activists rallied at the Castlegate to the rousing tunes of the Grampian District Pipes and Drums
Grampian District Pipes and Drums 
ATUC President Sasha Brydon welcomed those who braved the cold, introducing a range of speakers, united in their messages of solidarity with all those facing discrimination and oppression.

Over the next few days, we will be sharing speeches and messages from the day, starting with Sasha's opening address...

Sasha Brydon, President of Aberdeen Trades Union Council.

We are gathered here today to reaffirm our commitment to fight all forms of racism and fight fascism wherever it rears its ugly head.
Aberdeen has a very proud history of resisting fascism, where we are standing is very significant. Here, in the 1930s, Bob Cooney and others organised to drive the British Union of Fascists out of the city for good. In 1936, a group of men from Aberdeen went to fight to defend democracy in Spain against Franco, who was supported by Hitler and Mussolini.

That may all seem like an awful long time ago, however all over the world we are seeing the rise or consolidation of distinctly right-wing and reactionary forces. In 2014 we saw the toppling – aided by  NATO and the European Union, of Ukrainian democracy to be replaced by a government that rehabilitates Nazi war criminals.
Sasha Brydon, ATUC President

In 2016 the election of Donald Trump in the United States, in 2018 the election of Jair Bolsonaro in Brazil, In 2019 we have seen the re-election of Narendra Modi in India, the rise of Boris Johnson, and Benjamin Netanyahu is doing his very best to cling to power in Israel.

Things may seem very bleak, however we have opportunities to fight back. Wherever racists seek to organise, we likewise organise and stop them before they grow. The labour movement will oppose racism wherever it is found, in the workplace, in the streets, or in the halls of parliament.