Caribbean Matters: Racism rears its head again, this time in UK politics

Caribbean Matters: Racism rears its head again, this time in UK politics

The United Kingdom is home to a notable Caribbean diasporic population (though as of the 2021 United Kingdom census 81.7% of the population is white). Sadly, it is no stranger to the ills and evils of anti-Black racism in its politics.

We’ve covered the Windrush scandal here in “Caribbean Matters” multiple times in the past, but the latest scandal over racism in the U.K. revolves around comments made by a top donor to the Conservative Party (the Tories): white software CEO and multimillionaire Frank Hester. Hester remarked about Diane Abbott, Britain’s longest serving Black MP and the first Black woman elected to parliament, that looking at her on TV makes you “want to hate all black women” and that “she should be shot,” The Guardian reported. 

Abbott, whose parents were part of the Windrush generation, migrating to England from Jamaica in 1953, has been an inspiration to many Black Brits, especially to younger Black women, both in the U.K. and in the Caribbean. In response to these ugly and racist comments, there has been a firestorm of protest. There has also been anger expressed over what is seen as an unsatisfactory response from the Tory Party over demands that they return Hester’s donations. Protestors are also critical of the Labour Party for not really standing up for Abbott.

Caribbean Matters” is a weekly series from Daily Kos. If you are unfamiliar with the region, check out Caribbean Matters: Getting to know the countries of the Caribbean.

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