Keeping Quiet in Time of National Aggression!
Posted on March 15, 2017
Over the last few months I have noticed that social media platforms have become increasingly quiet, with people deciding not to voice opinion through fear of being trolled by maniacs.
In fact, if like me, you are ‘soft left’ in your opinions, you can get slaughtered from all directions, with right-wing loons calling you a poof or a traitor, whilst blinkered far left socialists claim you are a Blairite capitalist working as a plant for Rupert Murdoch.
A classic example of this is Owen Jones, The Guardian columnist and left-wing thinker, who decided to bring a debate to the table regarding the ability of Jeremy Corbyn as a leader of the Labour Party.
The abuse he received was so vicious he has decided to walk away from social media platforms for the foreseeable future. Journalists are used to debate and vitriol but when it comes to threats of death by sexual torture and so on, what is the point in damaging your health worrying about maniacs?
When I posted a blog several months ago about a far-right group selling poppy memorabilia for their own profit, I received a message saying ‘Bang bang, cunt, you’re dead’ so I don’t think Owen Jones is removing himself from social media for attention or sympathy.
The problem with silencing people, is that when honest debate disappears through fear of being threatened, the only groups who thrive on this are the aggressive nationalists who gain exclusive rights to a violent and vindictive platform.
I tried to make this into a slick segway with regards something I saw a friend of mine, Derek, post on Facebook the other day, but I can’t quite pull it off.
However, I will try, and hopefully you will get where I am coming from.
So, the picture he posted was of a newspaper he found the other day. It was under the floorboards of a house where he is working as a carepenter (see below).
A 1938 copy of The Reading Evening Post (thanks to Del Watson).
The article came from the now defunct Reading Evening Post in 1938, one year before Britain decided there was no alternative but to go to war with Nazi Germany.
What you are reading there is a chilling reminder of where nationalism ends up. When it seizes power within a formerly strong economic nation that has suffered hard times and wants to lash out.
Hitler’s dramatic rise to power was built on nationalist and economically protective ideologies that appealed disaffected working people who were worst affected by the depression and financial restrictions from WWI.
Not all Germans were Nazi’s and even those merrily brought into the ideology of it, did not know where it was all going to end up. Not at least before it was too late to have a voice without being imprisoned or executed.
Of course, there were political activists and journalists opposed Nazism but they were just told to sit down and shut up or face the consequences of their concerns; once they were gone, the path to the death camps was paved.
This is what disturbs me most about the treatment of the 48% who wished to remain in the EU. They are told to sit down, shut up and accept that their voice no longer counts.
The European project after WII was formed to ensure that old wounds could be healed and so one individual nation would not be able to fall into the hands of fascism and repeat the exploits of Hitler. So far, it has been a roaring success.
I just hope the UK doesn’t go down in history as the catalyst for a breakdown in a peaceful Europe.
Maybe I should sit down and shut up or face the consequences?