Monday, June 27, 2016

Non-Perfume Post: Looking For Hope Beyond The Broken Facade


Please note the subject of today's post is not perfume. Scented service resumes tomorrow with a review of Chanel's new Boy.

---

I realise no-one visiting this site during their commute to work or their mid-morning cappuccino break expects to come across views on political matters. I also realise that most of my readers are based outside the UK. However, the events that have taken place in Great Britain over the last few days are so monumental and so far-reaching, that I have allowed myself to publish this very brief post about my reaction to the recent EU Referendum. In the past, several colleagues in the 'critical community' have made similar diversions and written pieces about situations in Paris or Eastern Europe or the USA. I take my cue from their boldness.

I'm not going to express my thoughts on the factors that may or may not have led to Britain's 'Leave' vote. Since Friday, people who are far more knowledgeable than me have offered astute assessments of the background to our current situation (the editor of The Observer being one of them). In fact, there's only one message I'd like to convey today. And it's a message which looks to the future.

Intolerance, extremism and hatred do not seize power overnight. They don't march into town carrying signs with the words 'We are evil.' The ways in which they gain control are far more sly, calculated and devious. For a start, they exploit people's fears and insecurities.

The referendum result has made it clear that, for whatever reason, a massive segment of the UK's population is deeply worried and frightened about progressive ideals such as multiculturalism, liberalism and feminism (see the graphic above). In other words, this segment of the population is well on the way to being galvanised and taken over by the divisive, destructive power of right-wing extremists.

It is time to realise that these fascist forces are gaining influence NOW. This is not something that MIGHT happen in a few years' time. It has started NOW. Spend a few moments reading about the racist incidents that took place in the UK over the weekend and you'll realise the truth of my words. The young people with whom I've shared my gloomy outlook have shrugged off my anxieties with a chuckle and a claim that "Nothing bad will ever happen here." Sadly, history tells us that our worst nightmares can come to pass.

If we long for a future of unity, open-mindedness and mutual support, then we cannot afford to be complacent at this moment in time. We need to stop making politically correct excuses for racism, sexism, homophobia and other evils. We need to expose the factors that threaten the values we hold dear. We need to build bridges and give people opportunities to enjoy the benefits of living in an open world. In short, if we have a vision of what we'd like our future to be, then we need to take responsibility and stand up for it. Now!

Thanks for reading.

Persolaise

18 comments:

  1. Angie and Holly Cox.June 27, 2016 at 2:18 PM

    Deeply worrying but it needs facing up to and quick .

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Angie & Holly, yes, I couldn't agree more.

      Delete
  2. Thank you for this post, and the link to the thoughtful article. For me it sheds light on and gives perspective to this whole unfortunate state of affairs. It doesn't make it more acceptable but I believe understanding it is the only way to bridge what seems to be an unsurmountable gap which may in time lead to closing it. I suppose the only real hope is in every single human being doing what they can do, like you did by writing this.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anon, thanks very much for taking the time to write. And yes, we can all do our bit, every day.

      Delete
  3. Things are getting nasty here very quickly. Even 6 months ago, I could never have imagined that we would be in this position. There are shades of 1930s Germany they say....

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Greek Mike, I'm sorry to say that you're right.

      Delete
  4. I see your point Persolaise. We live in a challenging world in a challenging time. Things get exposed easily, on the other hand they get forgotten easily. I try to stay optimistic because coping with the quick changes that happen in this decade is a huge task for the average EU citizen. Among other things I have high hopes for the younger generation which is going to lead us when we'll be old. I hope their hearts won't get corrupted.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Neva, I'm with you. I just wish the younger generation was more politically engaged.

      Delete
  5. Persolaise I think you are spot on. Most of the moaning and noise has been about business and the economy but the biggest concern to me is the rise of the far right and the knock on effect through Europe. And that chart you included sums it up really.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Michael, yes, that chart is shocking, isn't it?

      Delete
  6. Dear Persolaise,

    I really like your blog, and through it its author who shows such a refined and educated taste and true respect for unknown readers.You have as much legitimacy in expressing your opinion as the Observer journalist having written this excellent analysis. The chart suggests indeed that " rejecting the others" in the broadest sense of the term is back in fashion. This is very sad indeed and we have a collective task to do our bit everywhere and everyday to change that.A good first step would have been for the European institutions to admit their own responsibility in this divorce and to offer the resignation of Juncker and its commissioners.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anon, thanks very much indeed for your comment... and your very interesting Juncker suggestion. Yes, the EU Commission certainly isn't blameless either.

      Delete
    2. thanks for this post. the more we know how others think and feel, the better.

      Delete
    3. Annsmith, thanks for reading.

      Delete
  7. I respect your view, and many others share it.
    However I would guess that many people voted to leave because the felt that the EU is deeply undemocratic, and that it is the potentially dangerous party in all this.
    The fact that in the last few days plans have been unveiled which outline a concrete plan to do away with each member's police force, tax collection, and so on, and have it all run out of Brussels shows just how much the EU desires to create a superstate. Thatcher, whatever you might think of her, knew that in 1990.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5TPpuIslzG4
    It would also be worthwhile remembering that the EU has always been an imperfect model as it never consolidated the debt of its member nations.
    The EU was always designed to operate by stealth under the cover of just being about trade, when it is clearly not.
    Also Juncker would never quit or be fired because he and the rest of the Commission are not accountable in any way. That is the problem.

    This may sound a little forward and/or a wilful misreading of your words, but do you genuinely think that half the people in the UK are intolerant racists who constantly need to be watched and reprimanded for 'hate speech'? Because that kind of arrogance, outright dismissal of real concerns, and general lack of faith that I saw all over the left press (stupid people shouldn't be allowed to vote, old people shouldn't be allowed to vote, people shouldn't be allowed to vote at all, etc etc), seems much worse to me.

    Respectfully

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anon, thanks very much for taking the time to leave such a long and detailed comment.

      If you don't mind, I don't want to get into a discussion of the referendum in this forum. I simply wanted to express some heart-felt fears about the future.

      To give a very brief answer to your question: no, I would like to think that half the people of the UK are not racist.

      Delete
  8. I think it's hard for many people to believe that fascism is real and rising, especially in modern democracies. Here in Canada, many people still see Trump as a joke rather than seeing how easy it is to use the legitimate anger of the dispossessed to insinuate fascism into a democracy. Not that we should be smug in Canada as loss of industrial and resource jobs could easily create the same fertile ground here.
    And somehow in North America we refuse to accept or understand the existence of class.

    Thanks for the link to the Observer editorial.

    -- Lindaloo

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Lindaloo, thanks so much for your comment. Yes, in many ways, complacency is the greatest enemy of liberty. And as for the 'c' word... yup, that continues to be a tricky issue.

      Delete

Thanks very much for reading my site and taking the time to leave a comment.

Please note that whilst the full range of views is welcome on Persolaise.com, comments containing expletives and/or abusive language may not be published.

If you're using Safari on an Apple device, you may experience some difficulties with submitting comments. Please consider using Google's Chrome browser on your Apple device; this may make it easier to leave your comment.

LinkWithin

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...