Saturday, 17 February 2007

A Different Kind of Stall

Most people in the SP are away at conference this weekend, I had something else on, but before I went away to do that , I helped run our usual saturday stall in Huddersfield. After about a year or so of on and off campaigning on the NHS, new local issues are coming to the fore, the plans to build two academies in Kirklees, the sacked unique care workers (see for articles in the Socialist about this),but we covered today the council's budget proposal which includes scrapping three well used children's nurseries in Fartown, and replacing the services with private ones. So on thursday, instead of concentrating on the Stop the War rally in Huddersfield, like the SWP and co, some SP members were at a public meeting in Fartown against these proposals to which 200 parents and workers attended (even the local useless labour councillors came to try to hijack the meeting).
Anyway, what has this to do with anything. Well, I was half-asleep when we actually got round to setting the stall up, and I thought it was going to be one of those stalls that's just dull really. It was hard work, we were there for half an hour before a union member and two parents turned up to help, and it was really slow. But as soon as they came, took some petitions and leaflets, I suddenly found myself, invigorated by the fact that it wasn't just the two of us Socialist party members there, there were five of us all campaigning against these closures.
I'm not sure what feeling exactly i'm trying to get across to you, but being part of a bigger movement on the build feels good, campaigning with fighting trade unionists feels good, not having to be the most optimistic person on a stall feels great.
I think the message is that other comrades should invite other campaigners to do activities together, sure you might not sell as many papers or whatever, or perhaps get so many contacts for your given party, but you are building a mass movement against cuts, privatisation and capitalism and in the long run that's got to be worth something.

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