14th of June was the day that marked what deprivation and marginalisation looks like in modern day Britain. Driving past these blocks I often used to wonder, what it must be like being so poor and living next to the rich? Tower blocks designed to mass house numbers of mainly ethnic working class members, creating urban communities was a way for councils to keep housing crisis under a quantifiable goal. Grenfell Tower located in North Kensington being arms length away from the middle/upper class members of London, who are supposedly the reason why Grenfell had its “refurbishment”. In order to make it too look more appealing, just how House Slaves were made to look a bit more well presented then their peers, to please owners but not as adequate as their owners in the 1870s (and onwards).
Similarly, councillors had the same principle for Grenfell Tower. Asides from Grenfell being a sight for sore eyes, it nor was of enough value to councillors. The residents were cheap to fend for. To use inflammable material it would cost £2 more. This, unfortunately, didn’t fit with the country’s budget, therefore buying cheap and flammable material draping Grenfell seemed to be ideal. This is what the UK government thought was best and practical when refurbishing the tower.
If only they had actually seen the residents as people instead of numbers. If only they had seen the residents as people instead of ethnic minority tenants. If only they had seen the residents as people instead of low income earners. If only.
To those who say Grenfell tragedy isn’t anything political, it is nothing but a symbol of political dictatorship. The poor are the oppressed in this country, it’s well disguised through our fancy skyscrapers and deceitful speeches. Residents and local people of Kensington numerously voiced their concerns to the council. It’s so hard being heard when your Black, Brown and broke? These rich middle class neighbours must be thinking whilst watching the news. It’s so hard to be given security, we see now the cost of security was somewhat £2 more, according to our government.
Moreover, it hasn’t been a week and already the media is attempting to downplay this corporate mass murder by dumbing down the death toll and giving less news coverage gradually. Perhaps if the Grenfell tragedy was an obscenity committed by enemies of the state and not the state itself, we may have have had a chance of receiving better justice, the dead would have received some dignity and the media and government would be on our side.
Written by Hajra Khan