• pete123 replied to the topic Sticks and stones… in the forum General Chat 1 week, 2 days ago

    Why did you say it was the mantra of the bullies then? Bullies never say it.

    Anyway, you’re proving the point. You think that people should not be allowed to say bad words to you (because it makes your life less pleasant) and that authority should prevent them from doing so. You didn’t learn the lesson of sticks and stones

  • logi replied to the topic Sticks and stones… in the forum General Chat 1 week, 2 days ago

    I know the expression. I survived school, too, somehow.

    In my school years, it was always the handy, dismissive, throw-away comment by parents and teachers that handed the bullies a free license to be total dicks at all times because they were only throwing “mean” words around and words can’t harm you. Frankly, that didn’t make my school life any more pleasant and I’m pretty damn sure that handing our politicians a free license to be total dicks at all times because they’re only throwing words around isn’t making the lives of the “minority and other groups” very pleasant, today.

  • pete123 replied to the topic Sticks and stones… in the forum General Chat 1 week, 2 days ago

    Sticks and stones is what my mum used to say to me and siblings when I/we complained about others (usually each other) saying mean things. It’s definitely the mantra of the “bullied” and is intended to teach you that insults don’t matter – you’re not effectively bullied if it doesn’t bother you. Bullies would rather their victims were harmed by the words they’re using, that’s the point.

    It is a radically different way of thinking to the way modern society seems to work.

  • Lil replied to the topic Sticks and stones… in the forum General Chat 1 week, 2 days ago

    If you don’t mind me saying so, you seem a bit conflicted.

    You say “Of course there is a line which shouldn’t be crossed” and “the question of where we set the line”. This seems to presuppose that there is “a” (singular) line and a “we” that provide a consensus about where it is. It seems clear to me that a diverse society is going to have many lines and many overlapping groups that define them. There is no “a line” and there is no “we”.

    It seems like you recognize this when you also say “it appears that the threshold at which the line is crossed is becoming harder to determine and more fudged” and “I accept that is subjective”. Which suggests to me that you might be looking for certainty in an environment that just isn’t going to provide it. I don’t think there has ever…[Read more]

  • logi replied to the topic Sticks and stones… in the forum General Chat 1 week, 2 days ago

    My point was more that we as a society are in danger of being unable to say anything controversial, however mild, for fear of upsetting someone or some group.

    This is a danger.

    I believe that the solution is to stop treating people as groups. Once the group boundaries are erased and people are all included in society with some level of equality, perhaps the sensitivity of group-defining topics will be less.

    Name calling is often one of the techniques with which people — frequently politicians and school-yard bullies — define groups. As soon as you label something, it becomes a thing. “We” label “them” and our labels become a flag to which others may rally. In our history, this has been done time and time again for religious, political and military reasons.

    The old Etonian…[Read more]

  • jam replied to the topic Sticks and stones… in the forum General Chat 1 week, 2 days ago

    I know what you’re saying, and I agree with you.

    Unkindness is never, ever justified, and compassion is one of the cornerstones of any civilised society. But let’s not debase true compassion by conflating it with sentimentality, sanctimony or self-righteousness.

  • scats replied to the topic Sticks and stones… in the forum General Chat 1 week, 2 days ago

    I want to keep away from specific cases and look at the question of where we set the line, if that’s possible because it appears that the threshold at which the line is crossed is becoming harder to determine and more fudged. If the “old Etonian” is the one I think you are alluding to then I think he is an arrogant baffoon, but that wasn’t my point.. My point was more that we as a society are in danger of being unable to say anything controversial, however mild, for fear of upsetting someone or some group.

    You make a good point about the difference between banter between friends and statements made by public figures.

  • scats replied to the topic Sticks and stones… in the forum General Chat 1 week, 2 days ago

    It would depend whether or not I thought they had crossed a line. I accept that is subjective,

  • Kyle replied to the topic Sticks and stones… in the forum General Chat 1 week, 2 days ago

    Equality for all members of a diverse society is not easily gained. Just as we’ve moved away* from times when women or black people were the recipients of discrimination, abuse and much else, we have to be just as intolerant of discrimation and abuse directed at other groups in society; whether that’s on the grounds of religion, ethnicity, disability, sexual orientation, whatever.

    There’s a fine line between good-natured banter between friends who know it’s not serious and the same comments directed at an outsider who may then feel threatened by what they consider to be abuse, or published in a newspaper by an Old Etonian who has a track record of saying unpleasant things and then claiming it’s ‘joshing’, or similar. Like walking across a frozen pond, you have to be very sure…[Read more]

  • dabdab replied to the topic Sticks and stones… in the forum General Chat 1 week, 2 days ago

    Yes, it only seems to be people from the majority/luckiest group who tell others not to take things too seriously., and call it banter etc.

  • Lil replied to the topic Sticks and stones… in the forum General Chat 1 week, 2 days ago

    If, as a member of a minority religious or ethnic group, you’d spend a large part of your life enduring ignorance, discrimination, or downright hatred, how willing would you be to put up with other people claiming you were taking yourself “too seriously” because its just “good old fashioned banter and name calling”?

  • Mike w replied to the topic Sticks and stones… in the forum General Chat 1 week, 2 days ago

    There’s a time and a place; leave the comedy to the comedians!

    Perhaps part of the reason some political clowns can get attention for this sort of thing is that the comedians have recently through various means, been effectively forced to avoid certain legally allowable topics. That was never going to happen without an ugly backlash.

  • carlson replied to the topic Sticks and stones… in the forum General Chat 1 week, 2 days ago

    Fake empathy.

  • Ali replied to the topic Sticks and stones… in the forum General Chat 1 week, 2 days ago

    It’s called empathy mate.

  • carlson replied to the topic Sticks and stones… in the forum General Chat 1 week, 2 days ago

    It’s competitive political correctness.

  • benny replied to the topic Sticks and stones… in the forum General Chat 1 week, 2 days ago

    There is a big difference between “name calling” and sensationalist attention seeking on an international stage, “dog-whistle politics” chosen explicitly to elicit support from the faction who very definitely do harbor ill intentions and xenophobic ideas.

    Even in the event that the name caller was just too bloody stupid to see that their name calling might be interpreted in any other way than “taking the Micky”, they’re still out of line. Some topics are sensitive ones and should be handled with a little diplomacy and tact when one is perched atop a very public pedestal.

    There’s a time and a place; leave the comedy to the comedians!

  • There appear to be a lot of groups who seem eager to be offended on behalf of others. These groups are probably bigger than those allegedly being offended.

  • mo replied to the topic Sticks and stones… in the forum General Chat 1 week, 2 days ago

    You are right, but occupying public office and having access to the media loudhailer confers a degree of responsibility not to behave as Joe Public does and such loudhailed insults bear greater weight and consequence.

  • Jaffa replied to the topic Sticks and stones… in the forum General Chat 1 week, 2 days ago

    The vast majority of people in the UK, regardless of race, religion or sexual orientation are, in my experience, happy to take the micky out of themselves and each other. The only exceptions are:

    1. A small minority of unpleasant arseholes who know full well they’re being offensive and insulting, but claim it’s just friendly banter.

    2. A small minority of po-faced arseholes with an axe to grind.

  • Without singling out any religious or ethnic group in particular I am wondering whether in today’s climate some minority and other groups who find themselves to be the butt of alleged racist, religious and similar remarks are in danger of taking themselves too seriously? Whatever has happened to good old fashioned banter and name calling? Of course there is a line which shouldn’t be crossed when the name calling is seriously abusive and nasty, but it seems that this threshold is becoming ever lower and some groups seem to almost revel in taking offence at the most minor of comments. Would it not be better if these alleged “victims” of abuse just turned the other cheek, shrugged and got on with their lives, or even God forbid, retaliated in kind with a bit of humour thrown in?…[Read more]

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