So, here is a riddle: I never went without, but I know others did; I was sheltered, but not ignorant; and I have the means to go anywhere and choose the slums… What am I? I’m a Champagne Socialist!
Yes it is that time again. Armed with ugly, shop-bought hand me downs and vegan-friendly, gluten-free veggie pita breads, the hipsters descend on to our streets, protesting about fracking in their home town of Shropshire and asking for £12 to adopt a sloth. It is clear that the world is a damaged, broken place. However, it is not clear who is going to save us. The WASPS have made the rich richer, the poor poorer, and killed even more of the planet – so they’re out. The world leaders have enough money to cure world hunger and haven’t, enough resources to cure the ill and haven’t, and enough power to stop conflict and guess what? They haven’t.
So maybe the answer lies with the progressive new breed of hippies. The folk that really love the planet. So much so that despite having enough money to buy an £800 feather filled coat, they see the immoral production of illegally hunting an endangered species purely for attire, as a good enough excuse to buy a thinner, colder, second hand, organic, hand-made hemp coat. They are pure through and through. When mummy asks why they have a cold, they answer proudly.
The intention is clear. Even if the trip to the slums is funded by the bank of mum and dad, they chose that over a massage in Bali. That’s says something…right? For centuries the rich have helped each other out, and ignored how damaging it is to the 99%. However the new generation of Russell Group students are joining Free Palestine Society and Tree Huggers Club, instead of Bullingdon. They are spending their Saturday afternoons marching in the rain and collecting signatures.
With this new wave of champagne socialism things are looking up. The most popular man in Westminster doesn’t wear a tie and wants to help poor people. The yuppies are voting red not blue, and they want change for the commoners. It isn’t clear what started this. Maybe the recession is hitting home. Mum won’t buy ricotta anymore, and in the fridge is own brand orange juice not the £3 one. The tide is turning. The world is bad and the posh folk are on our side.
With their connections and what not, what have we got to lose? Sure it’s annoying when your roommate at uni eats foie gras while wearing an animal rights t-shirt, but at least they’re trying. We’re stronger in numbers, and we need all the help we can get. With trees collapsing every second, and wars still raging unmentioned, we need change – fast.
It comes down to the philosophy. People care. The posh hipsters care. It’s true that some just like the trend, but there is a movement, and it’s a movement made of people who are acting for peace. Yes some of them are wealthy, some of them live in the expensive halls at uni, but they aren’t ignorant. If only I could say as much of the big man in charge.
When all is said and done, you can mock the posh voice at the human rights rally, or you can realise that we’re another member stronger. Who knows, next generation, maybe the kids in the playground won’t care about the brand and the image, and instead will ask to adopt a lion. Champagne Socialism isn’t an insult, it’s a movement.