Link to this page: https://secure.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/939/24870
The Socialist 8 March 2017 |
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Why I joined: "I began to feel really exploited and to think about why"
UberEats couriers striking against low pay, photo by Scott Jones (Click to enlarge)
Calum Ellis, Cardiff Socialist Party
I first heard about socialism from my mum when I was about 7 or 8. I remember being in the car and she had a Billy Bragg album playing. The Red Flag was on it and I asked her what it was about and what it meant and she sort of explained what socialism was.
Being so young, I just assumed that was how everyone thought because it seemed really fair. I took a more serious interest in politics after I had my first job at 18. I didn't stay long as I started to feel really exploited. I began to think about why and realised that a lot of workers are underpaid and overworked.
I began to talk about socialism with my friends and when Jeremy Corbyn was elected Labour Party leader for the first time we were overjoyed.
I first heard of the Socialist Party when I went to a Black Lives Matter demo in Cardiff in 2016 and remember thinking that it was really cool to see a political movement showing solidarity in that way.
The first time I spoke to anyone from the party was at a protest when the far-right Britain First were meant to be coming to Cardiff. It really sickened me that a group like that would be in my city. I went up to the Socialist Party stall and popped my details down and spoke to a few members.
We stuck around for a few hours and Britain First didn't even show up in the end but it felt great to have been there and shown that racism has no place in our society.
The following week I went to a Socialist Party meeting and really liked what I was hearing. I felt it really connected with what I believed. I began to read into Marx and Trotsky and was interested by the fact that this struggle and exploitation of the working class had been going on for so long.
In a nutshell I just felt it was time for change, time to help people and build a better future for everyone.