Quarantined Thoughts

Responding to Reena’s Exploration Challenge ” Quarantined Thoughts”. https://reinventionsreena.wordpress.com/2020/06/11/reenas-exploration-challenge-139/

The one consolation for this government mandated physical distancing and self isolation of the last three months has been the opportunity to explore and reach out to other bloggers during this quarantine period. One such blogger I follow, janetawel.com ,has recently written a passionate post stating her views on the current Black Lives Matter discussion, which you can access here, https://janetawel.com/2020/06/10/i-will-defend-your-rights-with-my-last-blogged-breath . In replying to her post I found I was writing too long a comment and so decided to respond here instead. The following are three brief sections of her blog post I have randomly chosen to give a sense of the whole and encourage you to read the blog in its entirety to gain a full perspective of her views on racism.

If you are white or “Christian” or a “good person” or an educator or a parent or a voter and you haven’t been saying anything about this until now …………………………

To want to say whatever you want with the caveat that none of your friends or followers or anyone can debate or question you is a perfect example of white / “Christian” / American ……………….

Freedom of Speech and the ability to question authority — It is one of the things our founding forefathers tried to get right in the name of God and nation. It is one of the things our Creator tried to get right when She created human beings a little higher than the beasts and a little lower than the angels.

The current round of Black Lives Matter protests and marches began with the horrendous murder of George Floyd, a black man killed by a white police officer. I think it can be safely said that any sane, reasonable person when viewing the video of this violent act would be horrified at the malice and lack of remorse displayed by the police officer. My own view is that the police officer should be charged with first degree murder. I have read a number of articles and comments that suggest these two individuals knew each other and there was a suggestion of personal animosity between them. If this is the case then it seems that the police officer used his position of power to settle an old score, which makes it premeditated murder.

Jane’s referencing the responsibility of white/christian people’s involvement in combating racial injustice is reminiscent of the ” white man’s burden ” as espoused in a poem by English author and poet Rudyard Kipling. Here is a description I have copied from the internet:

white man’s burden. A phrase used to justify European imperialism in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries; it is the title of a poem by Rudyard Kipling. The phrase implies that imperialism was motivated by a high-minded desire of whites to uplift people of color.

My view is that all people should take responsibility for their own lives and not use past oppression’s to justify their lack of opportunity today. The vast majority of white/christian people are more interested in getting on with their own lives, trying to follow to the best of their ability, the moral code set in the ten commandments, love God and love your neighbor. Neighbor being all people irrespective of the colour of their skin. I was involved in various roles at one particular Roman Catholic parish, with 2,500 members, for 30 years, including volunteering my time on the parish council as well as a number of organizations. My experience was that of the 2,500 members you would get about 1% of the same faces turning up all the time when volunteers were needed for fund raising, family picnics, ushers etc.

Using the above 1% guideline it is no surprise to me that people aren’t fanatical about jumping on any current band wagon. perpetuated by the media and other organizations with self interest in pushing certain agendas. Especially in these uncertain economic times when most people are just trying to raise their families and earn a living the best way they can. Despite what governments and media would have you believe their is racial harmony in the majority of communities. People of different ethnic background living side by side. The main street media is selective in which narratives they decide to push to enhance their readership and prolong their corporate existence.

In the interest of brevity I won’t add my views on The Black Lives Matter movement as that would add another 1,000 words. The one good fact to emerge from all this chaos started by one obnoxious police officer is the scrutiny of policing. This is long overdue. Just as some child sex abusers were attracted to the priesthood holding positions of power to prey on innocent children, subsequently covered up by the Catholic hierarchy; so violent minded predatory men are attracted to the police to exercise their position of power, their abusive incidents covered up by unions and the police hierarchy. I’m not for the crazy notion of defunding the police but there has to be scrutiny of best practices, use of tasers and firearms, cover up of excessive force etc.

In regard to free of speech. I completely agree with Jane’s comments……….however.

Complete freedom of speech does not exist in today’s mainstream discourse. I’m sure you have all read the many instances of so called cancel culture, where unacceptable views to the main street audience results in someone losing their livelihood. The following are my views on the recent Canadian experience.

The Prime Minister of Canada announced to great fanfare by the media that Canada was riddled with systemic racism, including the various policing organizations. The Premier of Ontario announced that he didn’t believe this narrative, conceding that of course their was individual cases of racism, it’s human nature were talking about, but it was not systemic. The next day he apologized contritely stating that he erred and would try to do better. The RCMP (Federal Police) commissioner said she did not believe that the RCMP practiced systemic racism. the next day she recanted and said she would do her best to root out systemic racism in the RCMP. One would presume that pressure was put on these two individuals by the federal government to tow the line. That’s politics.

There have been a number of cases in the media regarding race and cancel culture but I will highlight two cases. An ex politician Stockwell Day, now a pundit for the state broadcaster CBC was involved in a panel discussion on systemic racism in Canada. He stated his view that he did not believe in systemic racism in Canada, but there were individual acts of racism. He was fired from the program and forced to apologize for his views. A well known media columnist Rex Murphy espoused these same views in a column in the National Post. The editors were brought before the board of directors to explain how this column passed their scrutiny and was published. The editors offered their excuses, apologized, had a disclaimer placed on the original article and promised to have a counter argument published by a person of colour. The counter argument basically said that no white person should be allowed to write on racism as it was not their lived experience. This follows the modern school of journalistic thought which teaches that objective journalism is old fashioned and a thing of the past. The modern day journalist should bring their own lived experiences to their writing instead of objectivity. I could go on but this post is much, much longer than I intended.

I’ll leave you with the quote by MLK ‘ People should not be judged by the colour of their skin but by the content of their character’. Thank you to Reena and Jane for your inspiration.

Published by lensdailydiary

Born Stepney, London, England. Emigrated to Canada. Married, two children, six grandchildren. Retired. Conservative and cultural catholic. LOVE soccer. Tottenham Hotspur. Read historical and fantasy fiction..

22 thoughts on “Quarantined Thoughts

  1. Thank you for trusting my intelligence and my motivations and my “spirit” / heart enough to write this. Exactly what I hope thinking, caring people can do together. Shalom. Jane

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  2. I appreciate your thoughtful addressing of this issue, about which I’ve written a number of times.—three posts most recently.

    But I emphatically disagree with you that there’s no systemic racism, and until we white people are better able to walk in another’s shoes, we will never progress toward a truly just society.

    People love to quote Martin Luther King’s comment about the content of one’s character. That was clearly an aspirational exhortation. Do you have any doubt that MLK, were he alive today, would have been in the forefront of the Black Lives Matter movement? Of course he’d be counseling nonviolence, but he would readily see that his work was far from done—and he would be exhorting us all to reach for our better selves. Fortunately, many young white people worldwide see the urgency of this moment, which goes far beyond policing and extends to ongoing discrimination in just about every sphere of life. I am hopeful that their engagement means real change may be in the making.

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    1. I don’t find anything wrong with being aspirational, Annie. We all need an end goal.MLK stated it was a process and he knew he would not get there in his lifetime but his people would. There are numerous bloggers writing on this subject and one I have read attached two columns written by Yanick G.Marshall. Marshall, a black columnist, expressed the opinion that white liberals were absolutely no help to the black cause, he also expressed the opinion that violent revolution is the only way forward. He also dissed MLK as not an example to live up to. Our past heroes are being torn to pieces by modern-day standards. Which are not that great, to begin with. So there are a number of nuanced approaches to the BLM issue. I am firmly in the camp of all lives matter. Thanks for visiting Annie, I will wander over to your site soon and catch up.

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  3. Two schools of thought: (1) Policing of the police has gone too far. Their job requires the application of force in many instances, and their right to defend did not go away with the badge. Want to avoid being “over policed”? Then comply. You will get your day in court. Second thought (2) I live in a very mixed neighborhood in which many of my immediate neighbors are black professionals. It is these people that are preventing me from branding every black person a thug. If left to viewing the actions of rioters without this local confirmation, my thoughts might be far more concentric.

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    1. You have gone straight to the heart of the defund the police outcry. What is a reasonable show of force? If a person resists does he deserve to be shot. Did the guy who was found asleep in his car drunk at a Wendy’s drive-through deserve to die? Some will argue that he deserved to die because he stole the police taser, but this was an escalation caused by the manner of the arrest. If the first thought by the police is to handcuff a non-violent offender, wrenching his arms behind his back, then resistance is an automatic reflex. There has to be a better way to treat non-violent offenders. Complicated matters above my pay grade. This whole black lives matter and bending the knee thing, with white liberals jumping on the bandwagon, is token symbolism that does nothing to enhance the quality of black lives, except, perhaps keep this issue in the public domain. If you quote the statistics of black on black crime etc. you are called a racist and the conversation is closed down. I agree in normal mixed neighbourhoods, like mine, with an equal proportion of various ethnic races, everyone gets along and talks to each other. There is no disharmony except for some natural human belligerence over some local issues.

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      1. It’s the wonderful thing about writing Len. Even if I’m only writing something in my journal I explore everything, communicate everything and eventually come to a still place of peace …on everything. I don’t know how I survived before writing because I feel things so deeply and intensely, however I don’t think I am alone in that. I think feeling things passionately is part of the wonder of being human. But not being able to express and relieve those feelings can be toxic. Woooops this is turning into one of those long replies – might be a blog post in it but I’m sure you know what I mean. It’s why freedom of speech is so important and that wonderful quote on your blog encapsulates it perfectly. Everyone must say what they think (even if only in order to discover what exactly that may be)so important!

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  4. Couldn’t agree more, Kate. Writing helps to clarify my own thoughts by dropping the emotion attached to certain issues and really thinking things through. I’ve often thought I felt a certain way but halfway through writing reach a different conclusion.

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    1. Hey, Chelsea. That is very kind of you to say so. Just speaking my mind…as I wish everyone would do….instead of all this political correctness. Enjoy your Summer. Don’t take any nonsense from those five children of yours.

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