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Remember revolting women; we are still here

Events on Capitol Hill over the past few days have got me looking back on the Women’s Anti-Trump Protests. This monoprint was one I made from sketches done live by myself on the Cardiff March in January 2017:

We have seen in Johnson’s Conservatives the same cronyism as the Republicans under Trump. Not once-even after the attempted coup on Capital Hill -have the Cons spoken against Trumps loathsome brand of oppression.

In his book The Travesty of Liberalism, Frank Wilhoit pointed out that conservatism has one underpinning need: There must be in-groups whom the law protects but does not bind, alongside out-groups whom the law binds but does not protect.

Johnson, Murdoch, Trump et al have made it clear they use ordinary people for their own gains, brutalising, neglecting or incarcerating those with no perceived power.

We women stood against oppression in 2017 and will continue to do so.

One wild cat’s retirement

Our old cat Roger (who is female and nearly 20 years old) has stopped chasing birds and mice, preferring to just eat & sleep her way through this eternity of Sundays:

Apart from sleeping on my best mohair scarf (above), she has taken to cleaning herself on my knee and just freezing with her leg aloft for a few seconds, forgetting which bit she was cleaning:

But my favourite has got to be when she sleeps on top of my clean sheets as they air on a radiator (below):

In her hey -day she was the best mouser around, losing her tail in a fight with a Bull Terrier.

Deportation for Xmas

492 people arrived on the HMT Empire Windrush at Tilbury on 22 June 1948 – including this young girl with her teddy bear: 

From that day seventy-two years ago, British life and culture got profoundly enriched despite overt and covert programmes of racism and profiling by the state. The ‘no blacks, no dogs’ attitude of landlords at the time meant these people where ghettoized and pushed either into unsanitary, crowded conditions or to outlying areas of cities and towns.

Racism in Britain has not gone however, it has simply changed its systematized shell, culminating horrifically in the Tory “Hostile Environment” and the ongoing Windrush Scandal.  

Pensioners protesting in Whitehall at an Anti -Racism Demo, 2018

The 13 people who were deported at the beginning of this month (instead of 50 due to the intervention of a raft of BAME public figures BARAC UK, BAME Lawyers For Justice, Detention Action et al) will be landing homeless in a Jamaica they do not know. With the multiple, Conservative caused, crises in the UK, many more deportations may happen before Xmas. The 13 people who were deported at the beginning of this month (instead of 50 due to the intervention of a raft of BAME public figures BARAC UK, BAME Lawyers For Justice, Detention Action et al) will be landing homeless in a Jamaica they do not know. With the multiple, Conservative caused, crises in the UK, many more deportations may happen before Xmas.

Good riddance Demonic

Now that Demonic Cummings’ attack dog (Lee Cain) has gone and Britain has effectively been poured down the Brexit plughole, his work is done. Never before has an unelected – bureaucrat done so much damage in such a short period.

Bojo on a drive with Demonic

I did this quick cartoon as an idea for a mural to vent my frustration at the weapons- grade hipocrasy of the cons. It’s been so rainy I’m just putting it up here.

Moustaches and Murals

To promote my fundraiser for Sheelair I was recently invited by Swansea Council to do a series of multi-cultural portraits of ‘Welsh Women’ along a section of the hoardings around the old Palace Theatre.

The list of women to be represented formed itself , just the mention of a women’s mural evoked a stream of suggestions; women unknown/known, past/ present from clients, colleagues & friends. I then set about doing the first 3 (with some haste given the oncoming Winter), hoping to do a unifying floral motif /sheelair logo afterwards to unify them :

Farhana Ali – Swansea Tattoo Artist
Dami Okhiria – Swansea Poet
Iris De Freitas: 1st Caribbean Lawyer trained @ Aberythwyth Uni 1922

By the following day Farhana had specs and a moustache and a few days later all 3 had been sprayed out!

This is to be expected, but I’ll be back for round 2 soon……

Friend of Rebecca (Rioters) : Amy Dillwyn – another Sheelair influence:

A radical feminist who dressed like a man, wrote novels about cross -dressing activists, chain smoked cigars and loved playing with her dog… is this someone from our time? No, Amy Dillwyn was a Victorian Industrialist! Born in Swansea in 1845, Amy was an advocate of women’s suffrage and sexual equality. In 1892, Dillwyn suddenly found herself responsible for a workforce of 300 men along with a business in considerable debt after her brother and father died.

She prioritised her workers- losing her home in the process in order to pay them – and turned her dad’s smelting business around by refusing to take any payment herself for awhile, saying: “incongruous or not, it’s honest”. She also liked nothing better than playing with her dog; something I can really identify with!

Interestingly, one of her books is about the Rebecca Rioters – ‘The Rebecca Rioter: A story of Killay Life’. I intend to read that as soon as I can find it…

N.B. last 6 days fundraising for Sheelair so please pledge and share while you can:

Gather ye vegetables while ye may

‘Oi, leave those flowers alone! They’re not yours, they’re everyone’s!’ I shouted, just too late as a woman made off with a bunch of Hollyhocks & Sunflowers I’d planted in the corner edge of Vetch Field.

If only she’d helped herself to the potatoes (she’d have needed a garden fork for this), or the beans instead?

A group of us noticed at the beginning of the lockdown that the corner looked abandoned so have planted bits & pieces for the community who use the park. Should we take the theft as a compliment?

Horsing around in Sandfields

‘What the heck, I’m hallucinating horses!’ exclaimed the motor-cyclist next to me at the traffic-lights at the entry to Sandfields….

Sure enough, straight ahead of us were around 30 horses, some attached to traps as seen above. I immediately dismounted from my bike & grabbed my sketchbook….

This second horse – surrounded by young revellers ( their owners?) from the Bricklayers Arms- seems to be the beautiful Palemino/Dray from my 01.06.19 blog on the ‘Penlan Cavalry. I love the surreality of the modern shop, passing shoppers & 19th Century- style horse & trap. Only in Swansea!

Sisters aren’t doing it for themselves; 9th Sheelair influence – Kamille

‘This needs to change. We need more support for women. Our voices, creativity & talent need to be heard just as loudly & visibly as our male counterparts’

What was singer -songwriter Kamille talking about? She had just heard that 80% of top 100 tracks in the UK are written by men. Of the remainder 19% are from women and 1% from non-binary.

What can we do to address this? Support local initiatives for women & LGBTQ groups wherever you live and if in Swansea support Sheelair (whilst there is still time as only 2 weeks to go):

Two protests, too many deaths

Swansea turned out late morning in Castle Sq on Saturday to pay tribute to 16 year-old Abdulfatah Hamdallah (‘Wajdi’ to his friends) who died trying to reach England.

During this time of enhanced love for our own families and friends, we must demand the asylum system be changed immediately (to install safe and legal routes to the UK).

On to the second protest outside HSBC an hour later:

HSBC holds shares in companies such as BAE Systems, which sells weapons and components to Israel which are used in attacks on Palestinians (BAE Systems is also a major weapon supplier to Saudi Arabia, which uses the weapons in attacks on civilians in Yemen).HSBC also holds £99.5 million worth of shares in Caterpillar (the company that supplies bulldozers to smash civilians homes in Palestine).

Happily, although the bank was closed, one of the managers appeared from nowhere to ask us to ‘disinfect’ the area after we left -automatically ensuring our message gets to the rest of the management! You can see what this dog thought of that:

Dog rolling around under a peace banner