While Tories tried to accuse Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn of saying something he didn’t in Parliament, a drama of a different kind was unfolding just a few metres outside the building – where a homeless man died on the street.
The man, believed to be a 45-year-old Hungarian named Gyula Remef, was said to have taken the street drug Spice, and was also said to have been drinking.
At first sight, this supports the claims of Housing Secretary James Brokenshire, who has said the rise in rough sleeping was due to an increase in the number of non-UK nationals on the streets and the spread of psychoactive drugs like Spice, along with factors including family breakup.
But what put this man on the streets? He clearly didn’t come to the UK intending to die on the ground outside Parliament, so why did it happen? Mr Brokenshire’s comment fails to address the principle contributing factor.
And it is clear that, if he took Spice, he took it after he had become homeless; we have no evidence to show it contributed toward making him a rough sleeper.
But this is a man who had a job – he was working as a kitchen assistant at Charing Cross Station but was still unable to afford a home.
Doesn’t that suggest that he was a victim of the Tory wage squeeze that has been going on since 2010?
Doesn’t it also suggest that support for landlords, who overcharge for dwellings that are unfit for human habitation, is wrong-headed?
So what are the real reasons this man died on the street outside Parliament, so far from his homeland and (allegedly) inebriated on drugs?
What is Mr Brokenshire hiding with his supercilious claims?
The contrast between the drama outside Parliament and the farce within has been hammered home by comments on the social media:
And the only outrage MPs felt today was for someone muttering under his breath, unbelieveable and shameful
— Nicole Solomons (@CornishEPCs) December 19, 2018
This is absolutely disgraceful. We’re one of the richest nations on Earth and a homeless man has just died outside of Parliament today. Meanwhile, the news story that dominates British politics is of Corbyn allegedly saying “stupid woman”. Disgraceful. https://t.co/WtUeq9WNW7
— Aleesha Khaliq (@a_leesha1) December 19, 2018
The consensus is that the Conservative government – including Mr Brokenshire, due to the nature of his remarks – is insulated from reality and has no sense of proportion due to the fact that it is full of people who are… well… stupid:
You do not get more cut off from reality than this pathetic display of stupid people. It's as though people aren't actually dying on the streets of Britain because of their policies. Really! https://t.co/4O9SBlOhsA
— Keith Ordinary Guy #NHSLove (@KeithCameron5) December 20, 2018
Worst of all is the fact that the death of this man won’t even make a difference:
Has Mr Brokenshire bothered to ask any questions about this, at all? Has he considered examining the circumstances that brought this man to an untimely end outside the Mother of all Parliaments? Has he checked whether the death corroborates his claims or disproves them?
He’ll just say, “Immigrant – check. Drugs – check. Proves I’m right.”
Vox Political needs your help!
If you want to support this site
(but don’t want to give your money to advertisers)
you can make a one-off donation here:
Here are four ways to be sure you’re among the first to know what’s going on.
1) Register with us by clicking on ‘Subscribe’ (in the left margin). You can then receive notifications of every new article that is posted here.
2) Follow VP on Twitter @VoxPolitical
3) Like the Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/VoxPolitical/
Join the Vox Political Facebook page.
4) You could even make Vox Political your homepage at http://voxpoliticalonline.com
And do share with your family and friends – so they don’t miss out!
If you have appreciated this article, don’t forget to share it using the buttons at the bottom of this page. Politics is about everybody – so let’s try to get everybody involved!
Buy Vox Political books so we can continue
fighting for the facts.
The Livingstone Presumption is now available
in either print or eBook format here:
Health Warning: Government! is now available
in either print or eBook format here:
The first collection, Strong Words and Hard Times,
is still available in either print or eBook format here: