Tuesday, 25 October 2011

Young Free and Ugly? Wish to Remain So? Join my Shiny New Minority...

In Saturday's Rabbit, this bunny got onto the subject of his wish to remain his own man (although it should be added that a queue is not exactly forming to provide a stern test of my credentials). Lifestyle choices are entirely personal things, and as long as they don't involve criminality, harming others or the requirement of enforced generosity from the taxpayer to fund them, then whether or not other people approve or disapprove at least ought to be utterly irrelevant.

That's this bunny's take on the situation anyway, but I've had more 'good advice' on this subject than one might ever be able to remember. Apparently, wanting to be on your own is a sign of serious mental illness, a common behavioural trait amongst sociopaths, or just plain wrong. Everyone, and I mean everyone, should take the 'Choose Life' mantra that accompanies the start of the film 'Trainspotting', and make it a blueprint for how to negotiate their existence. More to the point they who fail to extract these things from their time on earth are life's dismal failures. I mean, what's the point in them?.

I appreciate that being brave enough to make up your own mind necessitates the possession of equal courage to take the shit that will inevitably follow - it was not ever thus, and in his younger years this bunny lacked the confidence and certainty that are evident now. This is strange in itself, as most people believe themselves to know everything in their late teens, only to discover over time that like most of us, what saw as a fountain of knowledge is really just a hosepipe - in the midst of a hosepipe ban. Having acknowledged that no man has a monopoly on wisdom (although married men will explain to you that all women do), an instinctive liberal has to be prepared to take criticism, if one assumes all things to be equal.

But then all other things are not equal, and when being questioned about your way of life is as uncomfortable as it is for most, then this fact might potentially prick the ears. Something of which this bunny is frequently reminded (as if he needs informing of something he's already aware of) is that those of us who have no intention of 'settling down', getting married and raising a couple of hell-raisers are in an undisputed minority. This has always been presented to this bunny as a means by which to demonstrate that he is merely being difficult or contrary, and until recently, I'd simply seen such analyses as further evidence that the individuals concerned had the square root of no idea how this bunny's mind worked, nor any appreciation of the concept that 'one man's meat is another's poison'.

However, a more mischievous solution to this nagging concern has now surfaced.

Membership of an officially recognised minority can be quite a cosy existence if only one knows how to play the system. With the PC doctrine now accepted as the only basis on which discussion of an individual's faith, beliefs, values or lifestyle choices can be permitted, this discourse finds itself strangled to the point where the expression of a personal view that borders on being contentious becomes potentially criminal. Laws on 'inciting hatred' are there not only to protect poor, oppressed minorities who would otherwise be bludgeoned to death by critical words, but also serve as a marker for the rest of us, to carefully watch our words since we are being watched ourselves.

Being white, nominally Protestant and heterosexual, this bunny has not yet 'benefited' from the state-sponsored policing of thought, but if we can find a way of getting the voluntarily young, free and ugly recognised as an official minority group, then the logical argument will be that such as demographic will also require some form of legal protection. Criticism of any member of such a group will then be punishable by a spell in chokey, numerous awkward encounters with Bubba in the shower and extensive 're-education' from nanny. I've already come up with a word to define such blatant bigotry - how does 'lonaphobia' sound? We could have bags of fun campaigning against 'lonaphobia', while calling for our 'minority' to be better represented in parliament.

Anyone fancy a 'Pride' march to celebrate our diversity? This bunny's always game for a laugh.

In the meantime, until the next census comes around, this bunny and others who have made similar choices will have nine more years of needle to look forward to. Take care and I'll catch you soon.

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