11 Aug


Calais Migrants photo calais-migrants_zpsmqyndyq7.jpgBefore you stop reading this on the mistaken assumption I’m having another blast at organised religion, let me say that I’m not. Well, not exactly: I’m using organised religion as an indicator of a particular virulent human frailty.

Christianity, Judaism, Islam and any other god-centred religion you might be able to think of have long histories, and they have only persisted down so many centuries because of the way all societies introduce very young children to them – here in the UK to Christianity and elsewhere to other monotheistic faiths. Belief is often indestructible and persists for lifetimes in many people. And although the gods those religions are centred on are purely imaginary forces devises so long ago we can’t imagine the hugeness of the time since their conception without difficulty, they’re still there trapped in the minds of many.

Enough said about religion, then. So you may read on!!

There’s another force at work that depends on the same aforementioned frailty, this time using the constant drip-drip-drip of repetition to encourage large sections of the population to believe falsehoods.

And that force is in the pages of some sections of the press.

Take the poor unfortunate migrants lurking in Calais for example. For many of them it’s a last hope for any kind of life away from murder and butchery. They want somewhere they can live where they won’t wake up every morning wondering if this is to be the day of the long knives, when they die in a pool of their own blood. And they’ve made a terrifyingly long journey against immense odds in order to get there. People-smugglers have probably taken their last few coins and they’re without wealth or income. The conditions they live in would make a dog turn his nose up. You’ve probably seen them as you’ve entered or left France by train or ferry.

And some elements of the brave British press (helped hugely by our xenophobic Tory government in the language it chooses to use to describe them) are making an issue of their misery. Groups of right-wing pseudo-nazis are clamouring for their demise. There’s not a brain-cell at work that isn’t fuelled by irrational and inhuman hatred (how can anyone be so scared of the already dispossessed?), and the greatest shame is those brain-cells call their owners British. And don’t one or two of the newspapers love them!

Without mentioning a particular newspaper, you’ll know which one I mean. And its constant drip-drip of hatred has worked into the minds of long-term readers. It’s only human to be influenced: we can’t, I suspect, help it. Our ability to learn from others has created a technological society that I wouldn’t have dreamed possible in my own childhood. And the corner of the crass press that I’m alluding to has grabbed (maybe consciously, maybe unwittingly) that desire to absorb ideas from others and twisted it. What are in reality lonely and lost cousins of ours are painted as a threat. We’re told they want no more than to take from us, without giving anything in return. It’s happened before, by the way, and the migrants, once accepted, gave hugely then as these would in the future.

Anyway, too many of us read the lies, week after week, year after year, and learn to hate.

And who do we hate?

The homeless and dispossessed and utterly powerless, that’s who.

© Peter Rogerson 11.08.15


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