Famous hip-hop artist and activist Kareem Dennis (stage name Lowkey) unloaded on British imperialism in an interview with RT, saying it’s the bitter legacy of slavery and persecution that is being avenged at the moment.
People are coming to terms with the fact that “Britain didn’t have an empire, Britain was an empire,” Lowkey told RT’s Going Underground when asked for his take on the heated debate on the removal of controversial statues. The subjugated colonies were essentially based upon people “long considered upstarts, if not barbarians.”
The empire prospered as its per capita GDP “actually increased by 347 percent” between 1757 and 1900 – but that boomeranged in the 21st century, Lowkey said.
What is happening now is the revenge of that history.
Labeling Britain an “empire of thievery,” Lowkey called out its crimes and wrongdoings, including “opium peddling,” “child enslaving,” “document burning,” “anti-gay legislating,” and “famine causing.”
Lowkey said the UK Ministry of Defense had to pay out around £20 million to Kenyans who suffered from the “effects of castration at the hands of British forces” after World War II. He lashed out at the UK government for what he said was “unanswerability and unaccountability for the past.”
Also Yearning for past glory? Brits more nostalgic for empire than other post-colonial powers, 33% think colonies ‘better off’ – survey
The rap star, himself a staunch critic of Western expansionism, also invoked former PM David Cameron, who once admitted that the British Museum is full of “looted” artifacts, saying, “if we were to allow one object to leave the British Museum, next thing, you’d turn around and find the entire museum was empty.”
Lowkey also touched upon the 2017 Grenfell Tower fire, in which 72 people were killed. The tragic incident, which he called “a state crime,” wasn’t an exception in British history, as it was “something that has shared lineage with other incidents.”
“There are many ways in which the current political moment and Grenfell actually come together and you can see these overlaps quite clearly.”
Watch the full show below.
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