It started out as one of those lofty ambitious ideas every society must have from time to time. It ended with the event actually being put into place. Rescheduled due to a blizzard eerily prophetic of a nuclear winter, Warwick Labour enacted its ‘A World Without Nuclear Weapons’ campaign on Friday 25th January.
With paint, signs, enthusiasm… and a model bomb, we assembled in the atrium and began to talk to anyone and everyone. Talk to them about the incomprehensible destruction nuclear weapons can do to our planet. Talk to them about the billions involved in replacing and operating Trident at a time when we are struggling to safeguard even the most basic of public services. Talk to them about it’s uselessness as anything but an insecure phallic symbol on the international stage (even Portillo agrees http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-20179604). Talking – this overarching element is what we achieved on the day. It’s often tempting to spend all of our time discussing amongst ourselves the type of society we want to see… and rightly so, this social aspect is the bedrock of the society we all love! However, lets always remember that we do well to build on the social bond we all enjoy and take our message to the environment around us – students and non-students alike!
Two elderly ladies participated and one, despite warning me of her arthritic hands, proceeded determinably to put a red hand print on the side of the bomb. A student who, though was obviously late for a lecture, stopped and signed his name and expressed how he had never understood why we wasted money on Trident. The countless people who probably had never participated in anything political before at Warwick but stopped because of the boundless energy coming from a group of students who took the time to explain the issues facing our country. All these people made it a successful event and proved it to be a worthwhile thing to do.
It wasn’t an obvious issue to campaign on. It wasn’t pressing on the minds of half the country. But the energy we showed we had on Friday 25th took a potent issue to Warwick campus and, what’s more, will hopefully clear and pave the way for more events in which we engage with people. Planning is underway for a campaign in the same vein, this time taking the misguided destruction of our NHS to the forefront of campus thought. You should all come and help out! It will be fun, worthwhile and can only be successful as the second campus campaign event in the space of a term.
So congratulations to everyone who took part in the campaign! The year’s only half way through and we can achieve much in the months to come.
(Vice-President of Warwick Labour, and Campaigns Officer)