This is a companion piece to an article I published a couple of days ago. It’s here, if you’d like to read it first…
People didn’t mean to destroy the atmosphere by building a life that depended on the petrol engine. People didn’t mean to create the slave-driving gig-economy by pressurising each other to join in the Smartphone revolution. People didn’t mean to destroy libraries and adventurous publishing by using Amazon, and e-readers. People didn’t mean to torture a generation of children, and disable the legal basis of women’s services, by being nice, obediently delivering Stonewall and Mermaids training, and pretending transwomen are women. But those things all happened.
We can’t just outlaw cars because many lives now depend on people nipping around in cars, and public transport is on its knees, and largely unaffordable. We can’t “get a job” and get out of personal difficulty because most jobs just won’t cover most people’s basic financial needs. We can’t just return to using real books, because it’s almost impossible to get what you want out of the library, and buying books is only cheap if you’re buying pulp rubbish. We can’t just drop the whole sex-and-gender thing, because we have a generation of youngsters “on the pathway” who are already desperate and as yet, there are precious few “experts” with the guts to say what those kids really need.
Please don’t regale me with all the reasons we did those things – I know, I get that – but it is so, as are the consequences.
I asked the chemist for something to help heal an eye injury yesterday. He found me something, but said I’ll need to get it checked out, in case there’s damage that won’t heal without help. I said I can’t – I’ve been trying to contact my GP on another issue all week. My log-in’s broken, or something and they won’t give appointments if you walk in to ask, they send you home to get lost in their dysfunctional telephone system. He shrugged, and said Specsavers’d do it for a price. So, shall I help the privatisation of the health service along by going to Specsavers, or risk going blind?
How the gender identity industry broke society
I know all that up there is about a whole range of other things, but I wanted to be clear that I’m not talking about goodies and baddies here, I’m talking about what happens when a society loses its way, for whatever reason. When the systems people have trusted break down, or go awry, insanity begins to win the toss in a thousand little ways every day. You can see examples of this in the excesses and madnesses on display in the last days of the Roman Empire, and any other society that came up against a visible ending for people to get neurotic about – but there is a hopeful side to this. The world didn’t end with the fall of the Roman Empire and although the climate crisis makes this one particularly dangerous, please don’t despair, stay with me for a few more paragraphs!
Three women talking
I was listening to this discussion between three of the women who’ve published about the sex-and-gender controversy. I’ve put the points relevant to this article in note form below…
… at one point, Steph asks the other two women how the cancellation and demonization of women on the campaign has affected them. Here is a summary of their response:
A summary of Joyce’s response: It’s changed how I think about people and institutions I used to respect …. Charities, academia, journalism, government…. (she later adds medicine to the list) … I question myself, I question everything I thought about the world before …. I was living in a fool’s paradise … it turns out they are all jobsworth cowards. … I worked for a paper that was supposed to be technocratic, that values evidence, but when people were saying “she’s an anti-semitic holocaust denier, a genocidal maniac, a homophobe, a transphobe, a sexist, a fool, a liar”… [former colleagues] said, “she must have something bad about her,” rather than “Well that’s a bit over the top I’d better look into this a bit more.”
Stock added that “It’s shown me how mobs and herds work.”
Joyce speaks about the experience of being amongst people who assume you are a bigot, or stupid, or wrong. She says people tend to assume the threats are the worst thing [most of the women on the sex-based rights campaign have received death and rape threats, both privately and publicly, along the way] but – and this has definitely been my experience – the worst thing is the people you know (thought you knew?) just accepting that there must be something mad or bad about you, because they’ve accepted misinformation about what we’re trying to do. They didn’t value you enough to find out what was going on.
It’s not even that it’s traumatizing (although it is, at first) the point is that it puts you on the outside. People seem to think you are saying “don’t shame me, it upsets me” and maybe you are, at first, but what you’re trying to get across is, “I thought we were friends, I thought we were comrades. You are acting in a way that I cannot respect, cannot like, cannot trust.” You are telling them that you’re sad because you’re losing a friend/comrade/colleague. And, after a bit, you don’t regret it. You make new friends – friends you can trust to believe in you, to stick up for you when you are right, to speak up when you are bullied. You don’t miss the old faux friends so badly then. As Joyce says, “it’s good to see the world more clearly.”
We’re nearly at the hopeful bit – just down here after Audrey…
Just look at the state of our politics and our institutions. Most of them are completely crippled by a combination of ineptitude and dishonesty, controlled by the kind of con-artists who take advantage of such situations. Our country is in the grip of humans who can efficiently adapt to utter insanity, and those who are happy to feed off them.
In every seriously conflicted area of national policy, there are parasites who can’t justify their demands, so get their way by spreading disinformation – faux science, and ad hominem attacks. Take a moment to listen to a woman who was pushed out of a different, though overlapping world (the Labour Party) for a different reason — supporting the 2019 manifesto probably, but the rumour-merchants came up with other accusations (which they were later successfully sued for)…
See how utterly unable and unwilling Starmer is to address any of her (accurate) points? It’s exactly the same behaviour that wears down women attempting to stay in politics and do feminism, but on that particular issue, it tends to be lefties that do the drink-water-and-stare-out-the-window method of non-debate.
Certain kinds of people are being pushed out of politics, out of their unions, out of schools, colleges and universities, out of jobs and community and social circles. Not all people – not even most people. If you’re not that fussy, if you’re not a questioner, you may not even have noticed. If you want to be a thinker, a questioner, please sit down for a bit and try to remember how many people – women, mostly, have disappeared from your circles in recent years. What kind of people were they? You know why they left, don’t you? Which of the plague of madnesses currently doing the rounds were they unwilling to put up with?
Please remember that for them, you have disappeared. Your sanitised, jobsworth party/union/charity/organisation is worthless to them.
I am once again remembering an image of the circle dance, penned by Milan Kundera, I think. He describes all the people who used to be his associates taking the bait, swallowing the propaganda, as though they were joining hands in a circle dance, taking off and floating away and disappearing. He feels sad, but he cannot and will not join them.
But he was not, and we are not, alone. He can’t follow them into their fantasy land but, one day, some of them might manage to come back to him.
The truth tellers
Soon, all the truth-tellers, all the people with the courage and the spirit to seek out other truth-tellers, those who cannot or will not follow the herd – all the people who actually know how to make anything happen based on reality, will be on the outside. And you know what happens then…?
The lines are beginning to move. Please take a look at where you’re standing, and make sure you’re standing with people you trust. If you aren’t, it’s time to look around for the people you can work honestly with. You may need to look outside of whatever you are in, if you’re still in a party/group/organization that can’t bear the truth.
It is time for people to come together. If you’re not a billionaire, you are one of us. One of the 99%, who need a social contract, who need a health service, who need a government that understands that it’s an administration, that its only purpose is to ensure that people — ALL the people — get what they need to live decently. We all agree on that. Check out who you’ve been shunning, or have been shunned by, and sort it out.
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