Saturday, 14 November 2015

The world is a scary place sometimes.

This world is a sad place this week. After spending November 11 thinking about the sacrifices people have made to keep peace, the rest of the week was full of terror and sadness - Beirut, Baghdad, Paris, Japan, Mexico. Terror brings out the worst in everyone.
I'm going to repost my (slightly improved, without character limit) diatribe from Twitter last night, and that will be the last thing I say on this matter.

So many people are willing to cry ‪#‎notallmen‬ and ‪#‎notallwhitepeople‬ but are okay with lumping Muslims into one group. Please actually explain to me how that makes any sense. Please explain how an entire group of people are responsible for the actions of few. No one wants to be judged by the bad apples of their bunch. Holding 1.6 BILLION people accountable for the actions of maybe 1000 total is wrong. There were 7 people involved in the attacks in Paris - there is no way to tell if any of those people were Muslim. One may have been Syrian, and one was a French national. That is all we know.

If that's the case, white people, we are fucked. We have to be held to genocidal standards. Meaning the enslaving of entire peoples is on us. Most of the fighting and unrest is because of us, because of colonialism and us believing that our race, our culture was better and more worthy. We do not have the right to treat other groups like sociopaths, because look at what our ancestors did. At what we wrought. I don't like being told that I am responsible for what my ancestors have caused. Instead, I try and be better than them and do better. I abhor racism - I will not stand for it, I will call it out, I will fight against it - because it makes no sense to judge someone based on the colour of their skin as opposed to their actions. If we all judge people by their actions as being a part of the colour of their skin, all white people would be neo nazis or anarchists as most of the terrorism in this world has been perpetuated by white nationalists or political dissidents.

23% of humanity is Muslim, most of them being from Indonesia. Let's not judge them for the .01% of them that are rotten. Being Muslim now is like being Jewish in the 1930's or Irish in the 1900's (or 1960's-90's UK), or the Romani people pretty much always. Why do we need a cultural group to try and marginalize? Why do we need to allow racism control us and drives us to disenfranchise so many people? Why do we need to allow the actions of a few dictate a generalization of the whole?

Let's be better than racism. We need to be better. Be more compassionate. Be more accepting. Be less prejudiced. Stop letting ourselves be controlled by fear. Let's stop blaming 23% of humanity for the actions of 6 or 7 people tonight, actions that almost all of that 23% abhor and disavow. Let's work on building an understanding, because you cannot fight hate with more hate. When we live in fear, we live with hatred, and the terrorists win. It is easy to hate, it is easy to be racist, and to let distrust drive you. Do the difficult thing - be better.

To quote a great philosopher: "Be excellent to one another."

Be better than the hatred, be better than the fear. We are all human beings, try and remember that.

Mes ancêtres sont venus de France, il ya 400 ans à la recherche d'une nouvelle vie. Ils étaient des immigrants. Ensuite, ils se sont déplacés à cause de la guerre. Les réfugiés ne sont pas le problème. Les extrémistes sont. Placer le blâme là où il appartient. Les réfugiés qui fuient les extrémistes.

Ce qui rend mes ancêtres français mieux que les réfugiés syriens?

Rien. Ils voulaient tous sécurité et le bonheur loin de la guerre.

Je me tiens avec Paris, Baghdad, Beirut. Je me tiens à la justice. Je suis contre le racisme et le profilage.

(My ancestors came here from France 400 years ago searching for a new life. They were immigrants. Then they were displaced because of war. Refugees are not the problem. The extremists are. Place the blame where it belongs. The refugees are fleeing the extremists.

What makes my French ancestors better than the Syrian refugees?

Nothing. They both wanted security and happiness away from war.

I stand with Paris, Baghdad, Beirut. I stand with justice. I stand against racism and profiling.)