Germans are more sexually adventurous than their European counterparts according to one unofficial survey, carried out across Europe by Björn Borg’s underwear company a few years ago. They top the kinky league tables with more than half of Germans stating a preference for ‘tools and gadgets’. Yet because the adult toy industry is only voluntarily regulated, the chemicals commonly found …
But since the hottest english debates are raging in America right now, it’s their culture which is shaping our modern english language, a language I’ve studied and loved for years but due to an global online anglophile community, one which is now getting increasingly and more rapidly nuanced. Terms and acronyms enter modern online parlance at the speed of light–‘caudacity’, ‘becky’, ‘juggalo’ and ‘MGYOW.’ Rarely a day goes past where I don’t have to look up a new word.
The shell which included social etiquette, consideration and interest in the outer world is broken. I feel a desperate need to be intensely focused on being sad and I resent any attempt to pull me out of my business of being so. Still, I will go through the motions, but I will not be happy. I do not want to be happy because that is just another attempt to invalidate what I’m feeling.
Maybe it’s my depression that twists a rainbow world into shades of grey. Or maybe the Order of the Phoenix really is a minefield riddled with CPTSD. In fact it’s so bloody obvious that my suspension of disbelief is starting to waver with the Potterverse. Surely there’s one decent, aware wizard or witch who would have said–a kid wrenched away from his parents at one year old might suffer some attachment disorder and need help.
Gone are the days when I positively affirmed every day in the shower, and shared uplifting memes. Now I see these past behaviours as tragic extent of mine and others’ unawareness. I thought if I changed my mindset and concentrated on dismissing the negative and amplifying positive activism, that the world I wanted would resettle itself with my aligned actions.
Privileged white woman pain is more gradual and less dramatic than that experienced by intersectional minorities. It is insidious. Kind of like bonsai trees, white women have the innate capacity to grow to a normal size but our roots and branches are cut so that we grow far smaller. Stunted or trained along a trellis in such a way that few see, sometimes not even us.
If people only have a choice between evils–be it republicans or democrats, leave or remain, tories, labour lib-dems etc. –then those who don’t want any of them are coerced into making a choice they don’t want, it violates the principles of consent at a very basic level. Consent must be free of coercion by definition, otherwise it is not consent. And when the costs of not picking a side are too high, the voter relationship with the government becomes non-consensual.
There’s a relief that comes with such a diagnosis. But also a glimpse of the fatality that living in our society provides. It’s a label which means you can be put in the box, ‘no longer of any use to society’. And the purpose of getting well is to be of use to society because the machine, the machine must be fed. That is the way of things in the system we have built.
I don’t hide my white privilege but many of my friends don’t know that my Greek-American father wasn’t considered white as a young man. But they don’t tend to ask because I look utterly white, a caucasian through and through. It’s such a small thing, that it barely scratches the surface of relevance. And yet weirdly enough my realisation of what this means is emblematic of our globally expansive-yet-locally-intolerant times.
Trump wants to make America great again, Theresa May wants to take Britain out of Europe. What they mean is that they want to return to a simpler more ignorant time, one where white people could exploit others–be parasites–without accountability. Abort the awareness baby. Abort.
Understandably, those whom fascists consider less deserving of rights and opportunity do not take their prospective dehumanization lying down. But the course of your chosen response in the fight against dehumanization is not necessarily dictated by your political stance. Whether you use reasonable discourse or violent protest is more likely be influenced by another factor: privilege, and how your privilege promotes your own survival.
Pathologizing Trump-like behaviour as opposed to his alleged condition, facilitates a dangerous denial and conflation. If someone is clinically diagnosed with a mental disorder then it creates distance because we better able to dismiss it. Cruel and abusive behaviour can be explained away and the narcissist is somewhat absolved of responsibility for his actions, as are we.
There could be many potential reasons not least that to become a overseas voter is a bureaucratic nightmare, especially for those like me who left before voting age. When I eventually found the energy to jump through all the hoops, I was turned away. The electoral commission had only been formed in 2001 and when I discovered the website several years later, my rights had already expired.
For people of colour, white ethics do not promote their survival–it only promotes white people’s survival and usually at the expense of theirs. People of colour have not been allowed voice, still today have less voice and any choice of an ethical framework–even by me, a white person–is ill-informed if it does not take this into account because our reality is weighted privilege.
There’s only one way to break a someone who is living in an extreme fantasy world, but it means risking the mind of the person themselves. It is tantamount to throwing the baby away with the bathwater. You must accept that this throws out the baby as well (a metaphor which suits Donald particularly well), because they do not–cannot–function properly outside of their bathwater. They have not learned how.