The ‘Iron Lady’ is no more. Margaret Thatcher was 87 years old when she died of a stroke on Monday. While the rest of the world greeted this news with disbelief, a few hundred residents gathered in George Square, Glasgow to celebrate the death of the only female ever to hold the seat of prime minister in Britain. The partygoers are subscribers to popular social network Twitter and, this enabled them to arrange the celebrations as soon as the news of Thatcher’s death broke out.
Margaret Thatcher is blamed by many in Britain for leaving the gap between the rich and the poor much larger than it was when she first took office. Some of the younger residents didn’t remember much about the ‘Iron Lady’ except that many breadwinners had lost their jobs around the time that Thatcher was still in power.
Organisations including the Socialist Worker’s party, the Communist party and the International Socialist Group were among those in attendance. The champagne flowed freely and placard-wielding residents chanted slogans declaring that “the witch is dead”. A Labour representative in the area, Alex Bingham, took to Twitter to voice his alarm that this event taking place. His opinion is that the celebrations were in bad taste and should not have been organised.
The Guardian reported that the scenes were also jovial in Brixton, South London and the crowd was larger than in Glasgow. Beer and music were the order of the day as the people made their way to Brixton. Brixton had experienced the backlash of Thatcher’s rule quite intensely resulting in two major riots while she was in power. A few of those in attendance were concerned that the policies and the effects of the Thatcher rule would still remain in effect through others who share her views.
In South Africa; there were mixed emotions at the news of Thatcher’s passing because of her tolerance of apartheid. On social networks, some expressed indifference while others where vocal in their relief that an icon closely associated with the events of the apartheid era has died.