Speaking truth to power

The 60s era fascinated me. I never lived through it but I live and breathe the music and adore the history.

And amongst all the chaos, evolution and cultural shifts of that decade, one of the things that fascinates me through to the 70s is how musicians drove the culture, and you need look no further than their response to the Vietnam War.

What’s going on?

Artists such as Marvin Gaye were willing to speak truth to power and that’s what made their music great.

I wonder where that kind of voice is in music these days, it’s practically non existent in the mainstream.

One area of society where it seems to have started happening is football and the English players converting a penalty was the least important thing for them to have achieved as far as dignity and victories in the wider world are concerned.

Rashford fought the government to feed children in poverty and succeeded.

Henderson raised funds for the NHS.

Sterling was a scapegoat for a toxic and amoral media and rose above.

And they all took the knee in opposition of racism despite the criticism. A gesture that is necessary so long as it provokes uproar from the racists or otherwise, ignorant. Spare me the empty arguments about Marxism. The economics of football say otherwise.

And the politicians predictably lapped upon England’s success in reaching a final and considered themselves entitled to that praise.

So I can’t express how satisfying it was to see Tyrone Mings burst Patel’s bubble and call her out as a hypocrite.

The abuse hurled at Rashord, Saka and Sancho was completely unacceptable but they’ve risen above.

But our leaders have a lot to answer for. Racism needs to be tackled on headlong. In education, on social media platforms who remain woefully complicit and in a collective effort to hold people accountable.

Racism is an unfathomable, special kind of stupid and those who use it to look down on others ultimately loses out in failing to know that our diversity in cultures and skin colours makes our world all the more enriching.

There’s good in this world, it’s worth fighting for.

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