From POPPIES, our homage to MP Jo Cox murdered a year ago.
Jo Cox, a proud, no-nonsense Yorkshire lass was murdered on 16-06-2016
Last year today, a young, good and honest politician from Yorkshire was murdered in Britain.
She was 42 and had become the Labour MP for Batley and Spen in 2015.
Jo described herself as a proud Yorkshire lass. In her maiden speech, she commented on the cultural, religious and racial mix of the constituency she represented and on the fact that she found they all had more things in common than not.
She was a woman who believed in a fairer, more compassionate world. She also thought that the British parliament needed more women. This is just a token of what she was up to when alive.
On her way to her weekly constituency surgery
MP Cox was murdered by a white-supremacist while on her way to the library in Birstall, where she was to hold a constituency surgery. Constituency surgeries are part of British -and Irish- politics and consist of the MP holding one-to-one meetings with her constituents (the people the MP represents).
As she had mentioned in her maiden speech, Jo Cox felt proud of the mixture of people and cultures in her constituency. Her killer wanted a “White-only” Britain.
She was killed seven days before the referendum on Remaining or Leaving the EU. MP Cox was in favour of Remaining in the EU whereas her murderer was pro-Leaving the EU.
Why we, at POPPIES, are paying homage to MP Jo Cox
We share the values she lived by and admire what she did and what she intended to do:
- POPPIES is multi-coloured -and not just red like the typical poppy- for the same reason Jo was proud of being the MP for Batley and Spen.
- Our site is for English teachers in the Spanish state Education System. English language and culture are what we promote and teach. POPPIES mixes English and Spanish because our family and our team are made up of English and Spanish people. We’ll find it difficult to cope with Britain outside Europe. The British community, my friends, are very concerned about what may happen to them. I am concerned about not being able to enjoy Britain as freely as we can do now. Together we are stronger, and we have more things that unite us than that separate us.
- Joe Cox was concerned about lonely people and social isolation, deprived children, innocent civilians in Syria and women in public life. So are we.
- She believed that the greatest challenges can be overcome. So do we.
- In the words of Malala Yousafzai, “she believed in the power of people to bring about change from grassroots up”. We believe the same.
- Barak Obama urged us to “Combat and guard against hatred, intolerance & injustice, and to serve others with dignity and love” as a way of remembering Jo Cox and all she stood for.
The Great get Together
So between the 16th and the 18th of June this year, and inspired by Jo Cox, the Jo Cox Foundation have launched, in Britain, The Great get Together initiative. I think we can do something similar in our schools in Spain to honour her and what she stood for:
- As she said, “we have more in common than that which divides us”
- And I think that, for the next academic year, we can design great activities in our classes following this idea.
- If you do, I’d love to hear about them.