'Reclaim the streets. Reclaim the streets' Fifty to a hundred white men between the ages of 19 and 40 walk at pace head-on through the pedestrianised streets of Leeds Shopping centre, a gnarl of foreheads and cheeks pink with beery sun, wrapped in flags of St George. He'd have been proud of slaying the mighty dragon for this ragtag bunch of no hopers. ' Reclaim the streets, Reclaim the streets!'. I’d pay to be in the room when they came up with that snappy line . ‘it's like we, yeah, are reclaiming, yeah, the streets, geddit!'
But like a person who shares a secret that everyone already knows they look slightly embarrassing cause reclaiming the streets is what Saturday in Leeds is all about. En masse the good people of Yorkshire are already doing it. It's called Shopping and this is the centre of it. The marchers resemble rejects from an audition for a crowd scene in Kes. Poor things: even their target audience, white people of Leeds, show no interest in light of the sale at Debenhams and a two for one at Clare's Accessories!
The English Defence League (EDL) are the face of fascism in England. As i stand and watch them pass I sense a diet of turkey twizzlers and own brand Cola. What better way than a fascist march to burn off those calories. Their pacey marching is supposed to make them seem aggressive but it looks like their mincing to music in their own heads, to village people's YMCA. Reclaiming the streets indeed. “Young men there's a place you can go… I said young men…”.