UK: The increasingly ugly face of the Left

Zita Holbourne, the violent, ugly, intolerant face of the Left in Britain. An anti-austerity campaigner, Zita Holbourne has been an activist almost all her life. Photograph: Sarah Lee for the Guardian Sarah Lee/Guardian

Years ago in Britain, a large part of the grassroots of the political Left was made up of ordinary patriotic working class people, primarily concerned about fair issues of pay, access to decent homes and a better future for their families.

This most people would consider to be the decent Left. Yes it was a little socially conservative, but it reflected the mores and culture of the working men and women who supported it. Now the British Left has been eviscerated and its traditional supporters driven away by those who place ideological issues, such as identity politics, over and above the practical issues that many working class people would like to see the Left working on.

Issues such as decent working conditions, decent homes and the sort of quality education that allows a hard-working son or daughter of a manual worker to progress out of poverty are pushed to one side in favour of race, gender and sexuality issues that have very little to do with what ordinary people are concerned about.

What passes for the Left today seems to be completely dominated by a loud, often parasitical, cadre of intolerant, middle-class, nation-hating, violent scum that we saw in action over the weekend hassling Nigel Farage and his family.

This is the ugly face of the new Left that has not only targeted Mr Farage and violently attacked UKIP constituency offices and activists, but has so often, especially in recent years, turned out for all the wrong causes…