For the past year, we have poured our energy into online political education, lectures, and skills training, hoping to reach as many disillusioned young people as possible whilst the pandemic continues. Earlier this month, finally, we returned to direct action. Catching trains from across the country, members met in Manchester to join the People’s Assembly ‘United Against the Tories’ protest. For many, it was the first time meeting outside of a Zoom call.
The Young Greens were just one of numerous organisations represented and as speeches began, it became clear just how strongly people felt towards the elite group of politicians only a few roads away.
Boris Johnson himself admitted that young people ‘have every right to be angry’. We know. The past year has shown us all the consequences of Tory rule with staggering clarity. As pandemic deaths rise exponentially and our key workers are struck down with burnout, the Government continues to underfund public services to promote the private sector interests of their donors and friends. Students and young people continue to be put last and are now expected to spend a lifetime paying social care bills for older generations. In the face of the climate crisis, politicians waver and fossil fuel giants fund cabinet ministers.
The Young Greens showed up in Manchester, and will continue to show up, to make it clear that young people will not be bystanders to this corruption and incompetence. The Prime Minister may agree that it is the youth who will be paying for the ‘reckless’ behaviour of past generations, yet he continues to treat the country as his personal playground of privilege.
Our anger is no longer peripheral. As the turnout at the march showed, young people can see clearly the injustice that is deeply rooted in our country and are ready for meaningful change. It is up to the Green Party to fill the gap in left-wing politics, to be unapologetic in calling out the Tory party’s corruption and its sinister influences that have been brought to stark light this week. There is an appetite for our progressiveness; it is only by embracing it that the Green Party can give our peers something to feel hopeful about, and to get voting for.