Socialist Labour MPs demand Ken Loach is immediately reinstated to the party

JVL Introduction

In an important development the Socialist Campaign Group Of Labour MPs has taken a stand, calling for Ken Loach to be immediately reinstated into the Labour Party.

“Ken is an outstanding socialist and a fierce opponent of discrimination in all its forms, whose work has done more than any other living British filmmaker to shine a light on injustice and oppression,” the statement read.

“The values embedded in his films — solidarity, compassion, equality — should be the values proudly championed by our party.

“That Ken is expelled while Islamophobes are welcomed is shameful and suggests the party leadership is drifting yet further away from these values.”

This article was originally published by the Morning Star on Tue 17 Aug 2021. Read the original here.

Socialist Labour MPs demand Ken Loach is immediately reinstated to the party

THE Socialist Campaign Group of Labour MPs called on the party to immediately reinstate the membership of filmmaker and anti-racist Ken Loach today.

Mr Loach announced his exclusion from the party through Twitter on Saturday.

He had been a supporter of Labour Against the Witch Hunt, which argues that the right of the party has used anti-semitism claims to purge left-wing members.

The campaign group was banned by the Labour NEC last month alongside three other socialist organisations.

In a statement, the Socialist Campaign Group that said it strongly opposes Mr Loach’s expulsion.

The signatories include former shadow ministers Diane Abbott, Richard Burgon and John McDonnell, MPs Apsana Begum, Ian Lavery and Bell Ribeiro-Addy, former Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn and some members of the Lords.

“Ken is an outstanding socialist and a fierce opponent of discrimination in all its forms, whose work has done more than any other living British filmmaker to shine a light on injustice and oppression,” the statement read.

“The values embedded in his films — solidarity, compassion, equality — should be the values proudly championed by our party.

“That Ken is expelled while Islamophobes are welcomed is shameful and suggests the party leadership is drifting yet further away from these values.”

The statement goes on to warn that attacks on left-wing party members aim to demoralise and push socialist members away from the party.

It continued: “The only way to return our socialist and internationalist principles to the heart of British politics is for Labour members to stay in the party and champion them.

“The socialist leadership that hundreds of thousands of you made possible need not be consigned to the past of our party.”

Mr Loach received widespread messages of support on Twitter from politicians, trade unionists and campaigners.

Unite’s outgoing general secretary Len McCluskey said: “Solidarity with my friend [Ken Loach], a tireless campaigner for working people and our class. We stand with him.”

Trade union law specialist Lord Hendy said: “I refuse to disown Ken Loach, a friend and comrade. And one of the greatest film makers this country has ever produced.”

Former Scottish Labour leader Richard Leonard posted a photo with the filmmaker and wrote: “[Ken Loach] is guilty of applying his rare talent to exposing the real life impact of poverty, inequality and injustice.”

Comments (21)

  • John Bowley says:

    I thank the Labour MPs who have had the integrity and courage to openly stand against the despicable expulsion for no valid reason of Ken Loach.

    The rest of the Parliamentary Labour Party, sadly the majority, demonstrate that they are worse than worthless and cannot seriously aspire to government,

  • JANET Shapiro says:

    I am shocked that anyone in their right mind would think of excluding him from a party that he has supported admirably through these past years. He must be reinstated immmediately.

  • Voirrey Faragher says:

    the final straw for me I’m afraid

  • Roger Jones says:

    Very happy that Ken Loach has been reinstated as a member of the LP and appalling that he had been excluded. Through his wonderful films, Ken has done so much to give voice to the oppressed and marginalised in our society.

  • Pete Firmin says:

    I welcome the statement from the MPs, but it shouldn’t just be about Ken Loach. He is being expelled for his association with one of the newly proscribed organisations. I want the MPs to come out clearly against those proscriptions and the auto exclusions.

  • Martyn Meacham says:

    Why would Mr.Loach want to ….Starmer and his nest of backstabbing self serving traitors have polluted and poisoned the labour party,and turned it into a tin pot tory party.Not worth bothering with,not worth supporting, not worth paying into,and definitely not worth voting for!

  • michael murray says:

    And the SCG couldn’t come up with a more assertive response than that to something that’s shocked the wider membership and public ? Maybe calling a protest meeting ? Picketing the LP HO? REPRESENTING OUR ANGER !
    Giving leadership ! If the putative Left leadership can’t get beyond merely
    expressing their objections to all that’s happening the membership will continue to melt away underneath them …..so will the planet.

  • Alan Maddison says:

    It now seems clear that Starmer and his unprincipled thugs have formed this alliance with right-wing supporters of the Israeli oppressors, in order to destroy the Labour Party. We know what they both stand to gain.

    I never thought I would live to see British democracy so blatantly and easily subverted, let alone that it was all made possible by elements of the Labour Party.

    Solidarity with Ken, and all those left- wing supporters of Palestinian right who have been falsely accused of antisemitism.

    When JVL members have faced such allegations 20-30 times more often than non Jewish Labour members, you know it was never about fighting antisemitism.

    It can’t go much lower into the gutter than this.

  • Richard Barton Pink says:

    Is there a petition to sign to reinstate Ken?

  • JoyAlle says:

    This witch hunt has got to be stopped by all whom value honesty and integrity. The british public deserve better than they are getting right now where a leader is spending more time purging good and honourable members that have been the backbone of all because he has not the guts to stand up to the right wing and many who have not an ounce of Socialism inside them. The Broad church has to be reinstated or Keir Starmer will be known for nothing other than the decimation of a once proud party that cared for the many and leaving the poor to have nothing to cling to in their hour of need.

  • Derek Taylor says:

    I’m not renewing my membership of a party that has forgotten what it has traditionally stood for and the reasons it was needed in the first place. While a rampant Tory government rips up years of progressive legislation and dismantles our beloved health service, Labour spends its energy insulting and removing those who keep the true values of the party going during these bleak times, those the party will desperately need if it is ever to return to power, under the confused fear that it won’t happen while Socialists have influence within a left of centre party. By now those in the supposed Red wall’ who withdrew their traditional support of Labour are witnessing the carnage spread by this inept and selfish government and are desperate for a political party that represents them, yet all that is left is this hollow shell of a former decent party. I weep.

  • Nigel Haines says:

    I wholeheartedly endorse Martyn Meacham’s sentiments. The political excrement who compromise the backstabbers of full time officials & careerists in the PLP around Starmer continue to show their true colours, proving how unwise Jeremy was in putting any trust whatsoever that these Tory 5th Columnists would deviate from their lifelong hostility to socialism. They would rather ally with the far right Zionist, political gangsters of Netanyahu’s Likud Party than with genuine, anti-racist socialists in the Labour Party.
    Time to marshall the forces at the forthcoming Party conference for a showdown once and for all to drive out these ideological Tory agents in our midst, so they can find their true home within the Lib Dems and the rest of those political, humbugs and hypocrites. A definitive split is long overdue!

  • rose challands says:

    solidarity with Ken Loach and all socialists ……sadly the right wing of the paty don’t care about socialism ……but we are not doomed ….we will stand tall against their bullying tactics and feel the strength of decency which they ( the right) can never squash ……

  • Andrew Dinkenor says:

    Only when Socialists stand together can we see off the poisonous spider’s web of Neo-Liberalism which is out to destroy us.

  • Diamond Versi says:

    I have now joined the Green Party because it is the only party now with socialist values. I believe Starmer is a Tory plant! He has infiltrated the Labour party in order to help Tories destroy this country.

  • Allan Howard says:

    Pete, you may want them to come out against the proscriptions and expulsions, but it wouldn’t make the slightest bit of difference if they did, so there’s really no point in them doing so. The only purpose it would serve is to give the fascists MORE ammunition to call for the SCG MPs to be suspended, or have the whip withdrawn:

    Call for Labour to withdraw whip from MPs backing expelled Loach

    Diane Abbott and John McDonnell among 18 MPs and five peers to sign letter in support of controversial film director

    Labour is facing calls to withdraw the party whip from 23 MPs and peers who have come out in support of expelled member Ken Loach.

    Ian Austin, chairman of the anti-extremism campaign group Mainstream UK,said: “It’s good news they have finally dealt with Ken Loach but you have to ask why it took so long. You also have to ask why Labour has not taken the whip of MPs who are supporting him.”

    Euan Philipps, spokesman for Labour Against Antisemitism, tweeted: “None of these MPs should be Labour Party candidates at the next election. Starmer should withdraw the whip ASAP.”

    Current NEC member Luke Akehurst has also condemned the statement saying those who signed it did “not take antisemitism seriously”.

    https://www.thejc.com/news/uk/call-for-labour-to-withdraw-whip-from-mps-backing-expelled-loach-1.519608

    Yep, falsely accuse someone of anti-semitism, and then call for those that support them to be expelled!!

  • Allan Howard says:

    PS As far as I can ascertain, none of the MSM have gone with this story, only the Jewish newspapers (and some local papers and left-wing blogs), which is rather odd.

    I just did a search on the DMs website and there was nothing, but there was a ‘piece’ by Dan Hodges from July 31st with the headline: ‘DAN HODGES: It’s no good just kicking out Ken Loach… If Starmer wants to survive, he has to expel Corbyn, Momentum – and Alastair Campbell’. And what is particularly interesting about his malevolent polemic – and OBVIOUSLY deliberate – is that the VERY first thing he says – ie the very first stand-alone line – is THIS:

    ‘They’ve finally come for Ken Loach.’

    https://www.dailymail.co.uk/debate/article-9847769/DAN-HODGES-no-good-Keir-Starmer-just-kicking-Ken-Loach-Labour.html

    Yep, exactly!!!

  • Allan Howard says:

    Nigel said: ‘Time to marshall the forces at the forthcoming Party conference for a showdown once and for all to drive out these ideological Tory agents in our midst…..’

    Could you elaborate Nigel? Thanks

    And I see that Michael (Murray) manages to blame the SCG for the exodus of left-wing members from the party! Now THAT’s what *I* call turning reality on its head! Yep, no matter what Jeremy or the other socialist MPs do, there’s ALWAYS people/posters who find fault with them! And no doubt if – in respect of Ken Loach – the SCG *HAD* called a protest meeting etc, that STILL wouldn’t be enough, and the likes of Michael would be calling for them to resign from the party in protest, or whatever!

  • Lesley Dean says:

    My husband and I have resigned from the Labour Party and are joining the Greens.
    Starmer and his team have crushed any hope of a united strong LP to win the next election.
    Many LP members and MP’s don’t understand what socialism really is and are afraid of it. Neo liberalism is not the way forward for the LP.

    I am absolutely appalled at Ken Loach’s expulsion.
    When they start coming for the artists and story tellers you know that it is time to leave.

    Lesley Dean.
    Dave Stewart.

  • DJ says:

    Why didn’t all of the Campaign Group sign this statement? I think Ken Loach himself would have liked to have seen a statement of solidarity with all of those hounded out of the party on the basis of bogus charges of antisemitism. I understand the frustration expressed in two of the comments so far about the timidity of the Campaign Group’s response to the witch hunt to date. To avoid being the victims of it themselves it’s time for them to join forces with those party members who are prepared to fight it. This means being prepared to publically reject the antisemitism narrative of the Israeli lobby which the right wing have willingly embraced. This is the only way of defeating the witch hunters. Taking “some heat” from the MSM goes with the territory of being on the left.

  • Pauline Osler says:

    Disgusted by Kier Stamers stand on Ken Loach and Jeremy Corbyn. True socialists. That is me done with the Labour party.How dare they exclude such good people?

Comments are now closed.