Yesterday, the UK government released its report into disparities and risk outcomes of Covid-19 finding that you are less likely to die of it if you are white. Here’s an overview of the report from the Guardian, and a great piece by Dr Annabel Sowemimo over at gal-dem highlighting the problems with reporting and data collection on race and health outcomes. Matt Hancock, our health secretary, has been ‘really struck by the the the the clear difference in the proportion of people who are dying with COVID-19 from ethnic minority backgrounds.’ Because it came as a total surprise to him apparently, despite many people pointing out that it was fucking obvious, and insisting weeks ago on a more detailed – and independent – public inquiry.
Meanwhile, in the US, Trump has literally been teargassing protestors to get them out of the way so he can stand in front of a church holding a Bible for a photoshoot. Police are shooting at protestors for having the temerity to insist on justice for George Floyd – a Black man who was murdered by police – and Trump is goading them into more violence, basically declaring war on US citizens.
Let’s jump back again to the UK, where we also have our own massive problems with systemic racism and police brutality. It’s just that in our country some of the racists went to Eton, so white voters find their brand of hatred more palatable and continue to insist that ‘the UK isn’t racist’ even though it blatantly is. Meanwhile, we’re exporting tear gas and rubber bullets to the US.
No one needs my hot take on any of this: I’m going to donate, and read, and shut up mostly. But it’d feel very weird to keep posting my usual blogs without any acknowledgement of the important conversations we’re having right now, and the urgent need for significant change.