Thursday, 17 November 2016

The new face of discrimination?

Recently I have been caught up in what seems an on-going debate. It comes from different angles each time but it has the same conclusion; where we, as society, are politically and how I am wrong.
I am no expert on politics. Of all of the courses that I have studied or trained in, politics isn’t one of them. So I understand that sometimes I may be a tad ill-informed and not as knowledgeable as I may be compared to topics like child development or education. This being said I do try to keep up with political parties and big issues both home and abroad; for example, I would acknowledge that I had a fair understanding of the Clinton Vs Trump race but would never consider myself a poignant choice as a question time speaker!

One thing I love about politics is that everyone has an opinion on it. There isn’t one set, bog standard and accepting political view point that we all willingly follow with a joyful heart; a utopian world we are not.
Yet, obviously, from that you will get disagreement and at a further stance passion where people’s lives are invested in changes. Disagreement and passion combined just leaves a lot of situations rather heated and this is where I circle back to my first point; I seem to be caught up in such a regular debate.

Everyone has their view point and I respect that and the people who have a different view point to my own. The one thing I have very little respect for is a personal attack because my view is different.
I am going to be really transparent here and admit that I am a bit of a lefty when it comes to my political leaning.

I, in my leftorium bubble, have missed the instances both at home and abroad where people on “my side” have been belittling, mocking and overly controlling the people on the right.
What seems apparent is that from the missed outcry the political pendulum swing has moved from left all the way over to the right and with that there seems a “sweeping right movement” across the western world.

We first saw it with Brexit and now with President elect Trump. The Right has clearly spoken and wants to be heard and to be honest I am “OK” with that. Both weren’t my choosing but we live in a democracy and the people have spoken and I happily acknowledge this.
Yet, this right movement still has a lot of momentum and it, following off the back of the above decisions, seems that we might see Wilders become Prime Minister in the Netherlands and Le Pen President of France; both points worry me deeply.

But, as previously stated, the right has spoken and clearly there does need to be a change.
Despite my acceptance of this I still seem to be getting attacked.

The fact that I call myself a feminist and believe that the increased gap in gender pay needs to change shouldn’t mean that I get laughed at or suggested that it is a myth and I am stupid for believing it. The same can be applied when I say I support animal rights, LGBT, multiculturalism and am against the privatisation of the NHS or when I say I read the Huffpost or Guardian.
Just because I have a difference of opinion doesn’t mean I appreciate being called a Commie, Champagne Socialists, Hippy, Cuck or a SJW; even if you’re trying to be funny or hyperbolic.

I can just about take it but why is it appropriate to call me things like cripple and spastic and get angry when I am disapproving, disagreeing and disgusted by derogatory comments all in the name of freedom of speech! (And, because us “lefties” are apparently great at name calling)
The tables have turned and the world is changing and moving in a place where free speech means that it is acceptable to insult people.  I don’t think restricting speech is EVER the answer but equally personal responsibility is something that I believe in. Over the last year I have seen instances where William has had to stand up for me when people have insulted me in front of him. I might miss the point here but I grew up being told that if you have nothing nice to say then you say nothing at all NOT because I have the right to say it therefore I should have verbal diarrhoea and hide behind freedom of speech.

No more.
This is not a world I want my boys to grow up in. I don’t want them to be in a world where they have to defend their dad from discriminative insults and all because people have the right to do it.  

I get that democracy has won and the people are now being heard but don’t make this an excuse for violence, discrimination, antireligious acts and to belittle anyone because they have a different view point from you. We should be setting an example to the future generations on how we want positive change not one that just breeds more negativity and hostility.
I, in the meantime, will still be the uncool kid and be proud to be left and teach my children about equality for all.

1 comment:

phil @ The Tao Of said...

Being the uncool kid is absolutely the best position to be in. Embrace the position and the individuality that comes with it, and it unlocks a level of resilience that most popular folk will never gain access to. Being one of the 'in crowd' comes at personal cost.

As for discrimination, I honestly believe that given a choice, most people would listen to reasonable arguments from both sides. Unfortunately we live in a period dominated by the rule of divide and conquer where only the extremes are represented, and moderation doesn't win.