Open Letter to Laura Trott MP (#3)

Photograph: Hannah McKay/Reuters

Dear Ms Trott

I first wrote to you on May 31st 2020, after you failed to call for any action against Dominic Cummings in the aftermath of his “eye test”.

I then wrote to you again on October 24th, five months later, after you peddled the Johnson line that Child Food Poverty was not really an issue at all, only for him to u-turn two weeks later.

Now, another five months on, you will be going to vote on Monday on Priti Patel’s deeply disturbing policing reform bill. This has at its heart a specific section on the policing of protests. Motivated by Patel’s disgust at Black Lives Matter and Extinction Rebellion, it aims to stop them. And we have had a first foul taste of the Britain it will create tonight.

This is the kind of policing is your Government is actively encouraging.

This is what Priti Patel is creating.

And you know it.

In both my previous letters to you, I have made two points that I must repeat again.

First, that you and I share the same professional background: we are strategic communications specialists, essentially applied psychologists. We know that words and symbolic actions matter, we know the effect they have.

Second, that with our politics as it is, only you and a hundred or so fellow Conservative MPs have real, meaningful power in our country. If you as one of those MPs move against the Government on this, they will have to turn. If you do not, they will continue.

Those points applied in both May and October, but meant nothing. Yet for all that you have defended the indefensible now on two seismic occasions and countless smaller, I continue to hope that this time you might at last stand up. You have made little attempt to pretend that you have an agenda beyond your own advancement since your election in 2019; but what little effort I give you credit for having invested in anyone but yourself has been on women’s issues and rights.

You must know that if you do not stand up now, what little credibility you still retain is dust. You have a day to choose. It seems likely Cressida Dick will be offered up as the scapegoat.

Will you take that sop?

Will you sacrifice all credibility, or will you finally, for once, do the right thing?

Your constituents will be watching closely.


Jon Alexander

activist / strategist / citizen / co-founder @NewCitProj / fellow @the_young_fdn @theRSAorg / member @CompassOffice @soclibforum

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