Why the London Mayoralty being won by a Pakistani Muslim man is so important
Here’s what you need to know:
Zac Goldsmith was the Tory contender. He has an estimated worth over £1 billion, is married to a Rothschild, went to Eton (one of the most prestigious, elite schools in the country) with the current PM and now ex-Mayor of London, and is MP for one of London’s most affluent areas, Richmond. Despite this, when he was announced as the Tory candidate, London was willing to give him a chance. He was supposedly eco-friendly, well-liked and willing to go against the Tory party for what he considered right.
Sadiq Khan was the Labour contender. He is the son of Pakistani immigrants. His father was a bus driver, he grew up on a council estate and is a human rights lawyer, and is the MP for Tooting, an area in London with a strong minority presence.
Zac Goldsmith ran a foul campaign that consisted of associating Sadiq Khan with radicalisation and terrorism just because of his background. He also deliberately attempted to align himself with the Indian and Tamil communities (because, you know, all Indians and Tamils must hate Pakistanis…), pandering to awful stereotypes by sending out personal letters to people, claiming he would “protect them” from Sadiq Khan “stealing and taxing their gold”. The Indian and Tamil communities were not at all impressed. Fun fact: Zac Goldsmith’s sister, Jemima Khan, was married to the Pakistani cricketer and now-politician, Imran Khan. His nephews travel to Pakistan frequently and are of legal dual heritage. Jemima Khan has condemned his campaign.
Sadiq Khan ran a campaign of positivity, focusing on his support of the LGBTQ+ movement (for which he received death threats by extremists), London’s multiculturalism and helping those from more difficult socioeconomic backgrounds. When accused of terrorism, Sadiq Khan claimed it was a sad day for young Muslims and Londoners everywhere, that such divisive tactics were being used with a city that prides itself on its cosmopolitan and multicultural nature. Fun fact: The extremist Goldsmith associated with Khan was actually someone Khan had only ever vaguely known through the mosque, years ago. The same man actually campaigned for the Tories.
At best, Zac Goldsmith is a weak-willed man who refused to stand by his morality in order to win this election. At worst, he is an Islamaphobe panderer, racist and not representative, or understanding, of London’s diverse culture. In fact, his campaign has been so awful, a formal inquiry has been placed and there is a petition being filed to the Supreme Court, asking for him to be prosecuted for inciting racial hatred. Ironically, this was not done by a Muslim, but one of the Indian Londoners that he tried to ‘relate’ to.
Sadiq Khan has proudly declared himself a feminist, has spoken out against antisemitism in politics and the outer community, wants to freeze travel costs in London (one of the most expensive in the world) and has campaigned constantly as a mayor for “all Londoners”.
This evening, Sadiq Khan won.
Sadiq Khan will now be London’s first Muslim, and first non-white, Mayor. After being told by the Goldsmith campaign that the British Muslim identity is basically non-existent, that London isn’t my home when it’s the only home I’ve ever known and that I will only ever be considered an ‘other’ in my own city, Sadiq Khan winning is about more than just politics. It’s about London speaking out and saying that it will not stand for that kind of divisive, outdated and quite frankly, abhorrent behaviour.
The Islamaphobic message in the media currently has genuinely terrified me, making me consider moving out of the UK, once I get the opportunity. My brother is 10. The media frenzy has caused him to be the victim of racial slurs.
But having a Muslim Mayor, in one of the most influential cities in the world, changes things. In a world where Donald Trump exists, London has Sadiq Khan.
London is not down for intolerant bullshit. I’ve never been prouder.
“You say to youngsters you can be British, Muslim and successful. You point to successful British role models. The biggest export we’ve got is (former One Direction singer) Zayn Malik. The most successful British sports person ever is Mohammed Farah, a double Olympic champion and a world record holder. Who won the Great British Bake Off? Nadiya Hussain.”
So just to recap really quickly to be sure I’ve got this right:
UKvia’s Prime Minister, David Cameron, wants to win a general election, but UKIP are pinching all his voters because they want UKvia to leave the EU, a process hereafter known as Brexit.
He therefore promises to hold a referendum about the EU that won’t actually be legally binding, but says he’ll stand by the result anyway, so it’s like, practically legally binding.
He wins his general election. The referendum on Brexit is set for June.
The campaigning is split into Remain and Leave camps. Political parties are immediately all over the damn place, except UKIP, who literally only exist over this one issue. David Cameron wants to Remain. The Leave camp is headed by Evil Clown Freak Boris Johnson, the former Mayor of London with an impressive cult of personality who wants to be Prime Minister so he can kick out all the Muslims and have his detractors beaten and/or killed, and Nigel Farage, a sort of Haunted Walnut Mask possessed by the soul of an angry Nazi who wants UKvia to be an autocracy or at least to just stop interacting with anyone who is The Wrong Sort, i.e. not white.
The Leave camp also contains some people we call Lexiters, who want Brexit for left-wing reasons. Unfortunately, they utterly fail to spot that they are being given an overly-simplified binary option and not a nuanced opinion-giving vote, and that they will therefore be siding with and empowering racists.
The campaigning begins. The Remain camp mostly uses an economic argument. If Brexit happens, they argue, the pound will plummet, causing another recession and also all that European funding our poorest areas receive will vanish. The Leave camp mostly uses an immigration argument. We’re swamped by swarms of immigrants stealing all the jobs, houses and opportunities, they argue, and if we kick them all out you’ll get your jobs and that back.
These arguments are both targeted at incredibly impoverished people. They hear the first argument - that they’ll be economically worse-off after Brexit - and think, “Things can’t actually get any worse??? So???” They hear the second argument - that there’s a really simple reason that they’re poor and it’ll be fixed by Brexit - and think, “So things can actually get better??? SIGN ME THE FUCK UP.”
Also, the Leave campaign is much richer, and can afford to do far more leafletting through people’s letterboxes. Older people who don’t/can’t use the internet to fact-check are incredibly vulnerable to factual-looking leaflets through the door about the EU, with titles like “The EU - the facts”.
The main points that the Leavers ultimately push, though, are as follows:
Let’s close the borders and stop immigration!
We spend £350 million EVERY WEEK on the EU. Let’s spend that on the NHS instead!
The EU is completely undemocratic, unlike the UKvian Parliament! LET’S TAKE BACK SOVEREIGNTY.
These are all literally lies.
All of them.
Nonetheless, the second one in particular gains traction - it gets emblazoned across the Leave campaign bus, and put on all of their posters when they give speeches.
The Murdoch-owned newspapers of UKvia, most notably the Daily Mail (the paper that supported Hitler), all peddle these lies ceaselessly, and paint anyone who disagrees as ‘unpatriotic’.
Meanwhile, Nigel Farage announces that unless the gap between the decisions is 10% or more, he’ll demand another referendum.
Just before the referendum happens, an MP in the north of England called Jo Cox is gunned down and murdered by a Leaver who shouted “Britain First” as he killed her and owned Nazi memorabilia.
Anyway, the referendum rolls around, and the following happens:
Older people overwhelmingly vote to Leave, having been taken in by the Lie Leaflets.
Poignantly, some of the poorest areas were incredibly susceptible to being given easy scapegoats for their poverty, and so also vote to Leave.
A shit-ton of people who don’t actually want to Leave vote to do so because they too have failed to grasp what a binary election is or means, and think that by voting Leave they’ll simply show the government that they’re unhappy with UKvia’s position in the EU.
Lexiters seeking ideological purity vote to Leave.
Racists vote to Leave in their droves.
Young people overwhelmingly vote to Remain.
The final result is a win for Leave, with 51.9% of the vote to 48.1%.
Immediately, the pound starts to not so much fall as plummet, taking several other currencies with it.
Within four hours of the polls closing, the Leavers admit that even though they’ve won, they won’t be able to close the borders.
THE FIRST LIE IS REVEALED
The following day, as the result is announced, Nigel Farage appears on national television. Not only does he admit that we won’t actually be spending £350 million a week on the NHS, but he denies ever having said it, and claims he thought it was a mistake that others said it. Photographs immediately circulate of his election bus which had it written on the side, and of speeches he gave in front of posters that said it.
THE SECOND LIE IS REVEALED
David Cameron cries, because this was never meant to happen.
Towards the end of the day - less than 24 hours after the result is called - the Leavers one and all admit that they don’t actually have a plan for this happening. In a bizarre twist, they blame this on David Cameron, a man who, for all his evils, wasn’t actually in their campaign, nor was he the head of a political party that literally only exists for this exact scenario.
The already-falling pound now enters freefall, breaking records for how quickly it can sink.
The Daily Mail publishes a story smugly telling Britain to “take a bow”, and then explains all of the shit that’s now going to hit the fan. Its readers are furious that they weren’t told this before the referendum, and are horrified that they now won’t be able to own and use their French holiday/retirement homes.
The racists take to the streets in unbridled delight, harrassing and assaulting everyone they think might be foreign, buoyed by the belief that everyone agrees with them. When Remainers try to talk about this, Lexiters suddenly crawl out of the woodwork to try to silence them, squawking about how it’s totes unfair that people think they’re racist for voting Leave. They do not see the irony.
Meanwhile, millions of people start calling for a second referendum, now that the blatant lies have been revealed. Also, all those ones who voted as a protest are feeling really fucking stupid. And hey, Nigel Farage did say he’d call for a second referendum if the margin between was less than 10%, right?
WRONG, MOTHER FUCKERS. Leavers who are either racist or tribal about the whole thing start posting memes about how everyone should ‘accept democracy’, and telling Remainers - or Remoaners, as they get rebranded - that ‘you lost, get over it.’
David Cameron meanwhile, having now schismed his country, induced the rise of street-side fascism, exploded his own economy and that of others and plunged the nation into a quagmire of uncertainty and No Plan, falls on his sword and resigns. At least now he might be remembered as the man who destroyed his country rather than the time he face-fucked a dead pig while gazing into the eyes of another Tory.
Nigel Farage then stands down as head of UKIP.
No, that needs repeating.
NIGEL FARAGE STANDS DOWN AS HEAD OF UKIP.
This is literally the only thing he’s for, but he’s so dramatically incompetent and out of his depth that he has to flee the scene and get someone else to do it.
Maybe Boris Johnson? No more Cameron, Johnson was a Leaver, now is the time…
Because he can’t do it either.
Because there is literally no good way of leaving the EU without tanking the economy so hard we all go back to using horses for horse power and return to the barter system. He knew this all along, of course, but like David Cameron and, let’s be fair, everyone else, he didn’t think we would actually leave. So he could back the safely-losing-but-popular-horse and ride into Downing Street as Man of the People. But then it all went wrong and so now he’s on the run.
Theresa May ascends the throne instead after a two-horse race in which one of the horses had only three legs and got shot before it was halfway in. Theresa May is a Remainer, but she really, really hates human rights and wants to repeal them.
That’s not hyperbole. She literally wants to remove our human rights.
In the first sensible political move we’ve seen in months, though, she makes Boris Johnson the Foreign Secretary. This cuts him off from his cult of personality power base, while making him responsible for negotiating our new trade deal with the EU, which as mentioned, is never going to be good. It remains to be seen how effectively she has kneecapped his chances of becoming PM at the next election, but it’s a damn good blow she’s struck, credit where credit’s due.
Then she sets about trying to repeal the human rights act.
People - Leavers - start braying about Article 50. Article 50 is what we need to enact to leave the EU formally, but is an odd thing:
We can trigger it, but withdraw from having done so at any time?
The referendum was not, as mentioned, legally binding, so May doesn’t actually have to do it.
The big question: Should Parliament get to vote on it first? The referendum was not, after all, legally binding. Should Parliament have a say in it?
Given that the Third Big Lie was that Brexit was about reclaiming UK Sovereignty, you’d think the answer here would be a straightforward ‘yes’.
The other big question: what the fuck is the plan for leaving? What will our trade deal be? Terms like ‘Hard Brexit’ and ‘Soft brexit’ get thrown around. Everyone is bewildered.
Then the pound dips lower than the Euro, which is a fucking disaster. UKvia’s newly-instigated minimum wage, designed to be a living wage, comes into play just in time for the costs of living to soar. Big companies start leaving Britain. Jobs become uncertain or are lost.
Polls show that the number of people who voted Leave but would now vote Remain is now greater than the margin of difference in the actual result. We haven’t even left the EU yet and already everything is going to shit.
Unilever announce that, owing to how the pound seems to be on a one-way journey to the centre of the fucking Earth, their products will be more expensive. This includes Marmite.
Marmite, for those who don’t know, is a black tar-like edible paste made of yeast extract that prides itself on splitting people more completely than an ill-planned EU referendum, in that you either love it or hate it.
It’s vegetarian and it makes things taste like meat, and you can flavour gravy with it.
I know what you’re thinking but you’re wrong, it’s delicious. Marmite on buttered toast is lush.
Anyway this makes people go F U C K I N G M E N T A L. Marmite is a British institution HOW VERY DARE THEY
People who previously didn’t give two mouldy shits about capitalist production as long as the product was cheap start screaming about how it’s only a problem because Marmite is bottled outside of Britain, meaning import costs. This is easier for them than accepting that their vote caused a Marmite Crisis.
And then the case of Should Parliament Vote On Article 50? goes to the High Court.
The High Court judges rule that yes, the British Parliament should vote on this as well.
Leavers. Lose. Their. Fucking. Shit.
People who moaned and wailed about British Sovereignty now moan and wail about the Sovereignty of Britain being protected. Remainers gleefully tell them that ‘you lost. Deal with it.’ They do not see the irony.
THE THIRD LIE IS REVEALED
Immediately following the ruling, as if by fucking magic, the pound does a U-turn in its bid to burrow through the planet to Australia, and for the first time since the whole mess began surges up against the dollar.
The Daily Mail publishes an article stating that it’s an outrage that the High Court ruled this way because one of the judges is “openly gay.”
So, election results are in, and Sadiq Khan is the new mayor of London. Which is very good news, imo, and also important, because it shows people are sick to be told what to do by politicians who spent their student days sticking their dicks into pigs’ mouths - people like, I don’t know, the current PM or the former mayor of London -
- or the Tory candidate to be mayor of London, the aptly named Zach Goldsmith, whose personal fortune is estimated to be around 1.2 billion £ and yet until recently didn’t pay a cent in taxes (pictured here with his wife, Alice Rotschild) -
- and want instead someone like this guy -
- who seems to know what actual life is like in a country where you get both this -
A guy whose parents immigrated from Pakistan shortly before he was born. A guy whose dad was a bus driver, not a hedge fund manager or some shit, a guy who grew up in a freaking council estate -
- a guy who is in favour of same-sex marriage, pay freeze for MPs, public transportation and, you know, is generally normal and probably doesn’t shoot foxes over the weekend.