Poster: Monarchy, Democracy, The Levellers and The English Revolution with John Rees Poster: Monarchy, Democracy, The Levellers and The English Revolution with John Rees. Source: Counterfire

John Westmoreland writes of the significance of Sunday’s meeting on the English Revolution at St Mary’s Church in Putney Church in London

The coronation of Charles III will be a ridiculous jamboree of luxury, arcane rituals, and magical thinking. The whole energy of the media intends to shove the idea that Charles is our rightful lord and master down our throats. But he is NOT OUR KING! His throne sits atop poverty we have not seen for a century. His government is corrupt, cruel, and dangerous to life itself.

How did such things come to pass, that the world is turned upside down? This is a question that has echoed down the years. It is a response to the shameful rule of wealth and power that shuts out the voices of the poor and oppressed. In a world where pomp and idleness, greed, and stupidity drive a coach and four over the bodies of honest workers, we know the world is upside down. Our task is to turn it right, so that honesty and initiative, promoted by the democracy of the labouring poor, can triumph over the wilful stupidity we see at every turn.

But note! There is a tradition, centuries old, of fighting back against the politics of crowned buffoons, and the lickspittle ministers and profiteers they rest on. A republican tradition of radical democrats is resurfacing once more. We remember when that other king, Charles the First, known as ‘the Man of Blood’, had his head struck off nearly four hundred years ago. Sunday’s meeting aims to rekindle the democratic spirit of those years that debated the great issues of their day in the very same Putney Church. Still today, the poorest of us have as much right to life as the richest of them.

John Rees is an author and activist whose books include The Leveller Revolution: Radical political organisation in England, 1640-1650

John Westmoreland

John is a history teacher and UCU rep. He is an active member of the People's Assembly and writes regularly for Counterfire.