Doesn’t it all wear you down? Around 20 years ago one of my clients was a man who had just had a sex change operation. S/he was going through the second phase of having drugs to reinforce the process. Her partner was a wonderful man, full of compassion and understanding.
She came to me suffering from pancreatic cancer, which for the uninitiated is one of the worst forms of cancer there is. There is no doubt in my mind that the social pressures and discrimination had been internalised by my client. That is not to deny of course a range of childhood traumas relating to being born in the wrong body. We made significant progress but after a few sessions lost touch and I have no idea what happened to her.
10 years before that I was responsible for drafting the recruitment policies to eliminate racism, homophobia and discrimination against disabled people in the hiring process in Manchester City Council’s housing department. I was exceptionally motivated and proud to do this. Any form of discrimination which has not been hijacked for a hidden agenda is anathema to me. As it is to this day.
Whilst I struggle with “self-identification” I can live with it. Just. After all in the 1970’s I was one of the first, probably the first, to openly dress like David Bowie in my hometown. How I got away with appearing as “Aladdin Sane” at a local rugby club fancy dress I will never know. I have always been proud of and have never hidden my feminine side. However many people have commented that I come over most times as an alpha male.
Without being able to question the motives of the thousands of people who “self-identify” as a different gender, it is something that will always remain a mystery. Another irony is my appearance as a woman at a friend’s fancy dress party in the 80’s and winning first prize.
Men, and it is usually men, having questionable motives to “self-identify” in order to “compete” in women’s sports mostly appal me. And I think we can safely park the perverts who “self-identify” as women in order to gain access to women and children. And perhaps it needs to be said again, as someone who lived through Section 28 of the 1988 Local Government Act. To causally link homosexuality and paedophilia is beyond condemnation.
I was born “on the wrong side of the tracks.” Maybe. Yes, white working class (is this a trope?) in a rather pleasant village south of Warrington in Cheshire. The terraced house I spent most of my childhood, teenage and some of my early 20’s in was pretty comfortable. I’ll pass on the parental stuff, save to say at both primary and grammar schools I experienced class prejudice. There were no black or even Asian people in my area and none at either school. The only cultures I experienced, apart from in petri dishes in biology, were working class and middle class.
Post university, my specialism was personal development. I had a dose of racism awareness training (RAT) in the 1980’s. Check it out. The positive aspects were hugely raised awareness of how black people have been treated historically by various “empires” around the globe. The downside was that it was designed to make the white audience feel guilt. Nearly 40 years on these themes are being played out today.
Unless I was a slave trader in any of my previous incarnations I have no single act to feel guilty about when it comes to racism. As I was 18 before I met my first black person and came from a semi-affluent background, to say I had no racist thoughts would be ridiculous. Racist teachers? Racist church leaders? Racist politicians? Racist reading material at school?
Minorities suffer oppression. Fact.
Do we have terms comparable to “anti-Semitic” to apply to the Armenians? The Irish? The Greeks? The Palestinians? Native American Indians? I watched two minutes of “Newsnight” on the BBC last night. The lead singer of Primal Scream, Bobby Gillespie-never seen or heard of him before, but was very impressed-was asked for his opinions on a number of subjects. He was asked if he recognised the state of Israel. Why? Silence was followed by the interviewer saying “not recognising the state of Israel may be seen as anti-Semitic.” Gillespie denied being anti-Semitic and went on to list some notable Jewish people he admired. Do I need to analyse or comment on this?
It could be said that being aware that one is in a minority and asserting the rights of that minority is a necessary part of life. Couldn’t agree more. Do we have some kind of international index, a numerical scale of suffering? What about the Libyans, the Iraqis, the Yemenis, the Afghans, the Rohingya Muslims for starters. Is it worse to have bombs dropped on you, sanctions which kill and starve large sections of the population, or the support of an extremely vocal regime which fuels closing down of any criticism of its actions? In case I am being too obscure I’m talking about Netanyahu and his Zionists who use anti-Semitism as a smokescreen for killing Palestinians and creating an apartheid state. Do your research.
If you don’t like the word genocide, how about Holocaust? Research the Armenian genocide and the Irish potato famine.
So are we defined and constrained by the country we are born and raised in, the history, culture and politics of that country or unspeakable bits of our bodies which define our gender?
No, I don’t suffer discrimination on a daily basis. Maybe weekly if I shop at Waitrose. Apologies for a pathetic joke which attempts to defuse discrimination by making light of it. Life is serious. Isn’t it?
Well, if we are awareness, consciousness, having an experience in a biological “spacesuit” then ultimately the colour, gender, background and physical attributes all become irrelevant.
One of the many reassuring trends in my lifetime is the ever-growing promotion of people who are born or become physically different. The Paralympics, having disabled people present all kinds of media programmes, the integration of disabled kids in mainstream schools-never happened when I was a kid- and all kinds of effort designed to make the mere thinking that disabled people are somehow inferior anathema are to be universally welcomed.
Nearly time to wrap this up. “Gender fluidity” is a mind-set, a movement, a paradigm which challenges the biological nature of humanity. Genetic determinism, i.e. who we are and how we behave is determined by our genes, along with Newtonian science is still peddled by the mainstream. The inroads made by an agenda-driven transgender movement is nothing short of incredible. I’ll resist the temptation of pulling apart the climate change scam. My friends all that remains to say is-you’ve guessed it-“Cui Bono”. The world in 2019 is awash with victims. I have mentioned many of them here.
As I was metamorphosing into a psychotherapist in the mid-1980’s I read quite a few books that challenged psychiatry and psychotherapy. The recent BBC programme featuring actor David Harewood was excellent. However what is that quote?
“It is no measure of health to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick society.”
Bang on Jiddu. Apparently psychosis (what David Harewood experienced as a young man) affects only 1% of the population and usually occurs before the age of 30. Some of the symptoms of psychosis include believing we are God, feeling invincible and hearing voices. Well we all have the Divine within us. As pure consciousness we are invincible and I’d rather hear certain voices (spirit, wise avatars, guides and angels) than those of advertisers, unhinged zealots and unconscious agenda-following sheeple. I could, as always, go on.
Having fought this “profoundly sick society” since childhood, having identified with oppressed peoples and groups everywhere I have realised for some time now that getting better deals for minorities are mere crumbs off the hidden masters’ table.
I’m sure you’ve heard this one.
A man is walking home along a riverbank. Then suddenly he hears a commotion and sees there is a person in the river unable to swim. As a strong swimmer he jumps in and rescues the person. It could be a woman walking along the riverbank. After helping the person out and arranging for his continuing recovery, the man continues his journey.
It isn’t long before he spots someone else in the river. He does his usual heroics and rescues the person. He’s becoming exhausted and somewhat confused. And yes, after a slightly longer interval a third person requires rescue. Before he leaves the third person he says to them “I’m going upstream to find out who is throwing people in the river in the first instance.”
We need to get rid of the system that wants to dispose of humanity. Self-identification is a smokescreen. We live in a time that artificial intelligence may make throwing people in the river redundant. Going beyond Aldous Huxley and loving our own servitude, the chips in our brains may bring about a situation which my late mother would find incredible.
When I was a young child I used to “wind up” my mother. Nothing really serious you understand, but I could appreciate she didn’t find it to her advantage. Threatening me with my father when he came home from work lost its deterrent value. We lived 100 yards from a deep, dark canal. My mother’s doomsday tactic was to storm off and disappear for at least an hour. I now can laugh about it and have left about it for a long, long time. But when I was a kid there was always the possibility that she would not return having threatened to “throw m’sell in”.
Perhaps we could all “throw ourselves in”?
Or perhaps not. Onwards and upwards.
Never give up.
Jack Stewart, May 18th 2019.