The Life of Abbott

Friday 7 April 2017

Somewhere in a generic African village, Diane Abbott stands surrounded by the local African populace. 

Abbott: “Those Brits have bled us dry, the bastards. They’ve taken everything we had, not just from us but from our fathers and our fathers’ fathers.”

(Cheers from the crowd)

Abowade: “And our fathers’ fathers’ fathers.”

Abbott: “Yes.”

Abowade: “And our fathers’ fathers’ fathers’ fathers.”

Abbott: “Alright Abowade don’t labour the point. And what have they given us in return?”

Kareem: “Well the fresh water pump comes in quite handy. Saves a ten mile trip to get fresh water each day.”

Abbott: “Oh yeah, yeah they gave us that. Yeah that’s true.”

Caetano: “And the Sanitation!”

Abowade: “Yes Diane, don’t forget the sanitation. You remember what the village used to be like.”

Abbott: “Ok I’ll grant you that the water pump and sanitation are two things the British have done…”

Ujarak: “And ending the international slave trade.”

Abbott: (sharply) “Well yes obviously they ended the international slave trade… the slave trade thing goes without saying. But apart from the fresh water, sanitation and abolishment of slavery…”

Ogechukwukama: “The billions in foreign aid and charity…”

Caetano: “Medicine, education, health…”

Abbott: “Yes… alright, fair enough…”

Ogechukwukama: “They showed us how to mine our natural resources and sell them on the international markets for billions, allowing us to create a national economy.”

Abowade: “Oh yes, true.”

Ogechukwukama: “Yes Diane, that certainly comes in handy.”

Abowade: “All those mosquito nets they sent us certainly stopped the spread of malaria.”

Ogechukwukama: “Yes the mosquito nets have saved hundreds of thousands of lives.”

(More general murmurs of agreement amongst the crowd)

Abbott: “Alright… alright… but apart from the fresh water, sanitation, the abolition of slavery, the billions in foreign aid and charity, the medicine, education, better public health, teaching us to mine, and the mosquito nets, what have the British ever done for us?”

Ujarak: “Welcomed millions of us into their country and given us free food, housing and healthcare.”

Abbott: “What? Oh… shut up…”

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