When Speaker John Bercow declared that President Trump would not be invited to address the House of Commons during his state visit to the UK, on account of his sexist, racist and disablist behaviour, parliamentary opinion was divided. Some MPs supported Bercow’s ban; others called for his resignation, insisting that Mr Speaker should not take sides in matters of political controversy.
On the streets of Stratford, East London, there was no such division. Responding to Trump’s executive order preventing citizens of seven Muslim-majority countries from entering the USA, everyone I spoke to coming in and out of Westfield’s, was dead-set against the ‘Muslim ban’ and united in their opposition to President Chump.
Luke (24): “Donald Trump seems to be thriving off an already divided world. We all disagree on so many things but when it comes to equality it is great to see people coming together against the evil force.”
Aisha (28): “It feels like the whole idea of my religion has been attacked by America for so long, so this does not surprise me. The hate that is directed towards Muslims is increasingly restricting the way we live our lives.
“Welcoming Donald Trump with open arms would mean we support his crazy ideas. England is my home and it will force me to think carefully about the beliefs this country really has.”
Javon (18): “If Donald Trump is banning innocent people, curtailing their freedom of movement then he should also be banned from coming here.
“A president should unite people not the opposite.”
No one in Stratford wanted to give ground to such a divisive figure.