Woke and proud

by Rick Johansen

I honestly fear for the future of our country when a newspaper leads with a front page like the one above. I know that the Daily Express is the province of embittered old people, but this is something else. The actual secretary of state for defence, Grant Shapps, is complaining that “controversial leftist thinking” has crept into the armed forces. It’s the fault of that there “woke culture” toots Shapps and that “the drumbeat of those who despise Britain” is failing the army and the public. I credit my loyal reader with enough common sense to see through Shapps’s fusilade of bombastic buckshot, but let’s drill down, very briefly on what woke actually is and means.

According to the Collins dictionary, “someone who is woke is very aware of social and political unfairness”. So, that’s me, then. I am aware of social and political unfairness, so call me woke for volunteering at a food bank twice a week. Call me woke anyway. I wear it as a badge of honour. But many on the political right – it is worth mentioning this simple fact – have tried to twist its meaning. To them, so called wokeness means political correctness, the cancel culture and a left-leaning bias.

So-called political correctness is in any event a myth, as is the so-called cancel culture. And quite how this all-powerful left leaning bias has prevailed after 14 years of the country being ruled by hard line right wing politicians is beyond me. We soggy left-leaning liberals have no real power. We have no access to the mainstream media, nor right-wing establishment propaganda vehicles like most of the press and hard right hate channels like GB News and Talk TV. If there really was a woke culture damaging the armed forces who is to blame? The unnamed and entirely nonexistent so called wokerati can’t be. So, it would be the governments led by David Cameron, Theresa May, Boris Johnson, Liz Truss and Rishi Sunak, the last two being the most right-wing prime ministers we have ever had in the UK. Who believes this nonsense? Let me ask Shapps some questions:

  • Was this woke culture responsible for Liz Truss crashing the economy, driving up interest rates and forcing ordinary folk to pay far higher mortgages?
  • Are the wokerati responsible for the near collapse of NHS dentistry, nearly eight million people on NHS waiting lists and the near impossibility of getting a GP appointment in many parts of the country?
  • Is it wokery that has made it near impossible for people to buy their own houses?
  • Is it the fault of the wokerati that our rivers, streams and oceans are utterly flooded with human shit?
  • Are you blaming these dreadful woke people for record numbers of people using food banks?
  • Were government scandals like Windrush, the Post Office Horizon disgrace and of course government fraud like the PPE episode down to us woke folk?

Look at things this way and it’s not hard to work out what is going on. In the absence of anything positive to say, and with a terrible record in government, chancers and spivs like Shapps are involved in distraction politics, by a cynical combination of gaslighting and trolling, with a large dollop of lies on top.

No, it wasn’t us. It’s not our fault that everything is broken and nothing works anymore. This all happened on this government’s watch. They have all the power, aided and abetted by ‘client’ journalists who have no more regard for the truth than Joseph Goebbels.

I am woke and proud and if you care about your fellow woman and man, so should you be. Being woke is a good thing. Being a pathetic little culture warrior like Grant Shapps is a bad thing. And if we’re all woke, things can only get better.


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