I suppose it would be odd if I didn’t write something about depression in Mental Health Week. But ironically, I’m currently depressed, and more ironically still, unlike all the artists I love and admire, I’m not inspired to greatness by suspension in my own misery.
Twitter is a weird place.
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I’ve never been particularly comfortable with Caitlyn Jenner’s transition.
That bothered me.
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By resigning from his position as technical director of British cycling, Shane Sutton has instantly become the poster boy for those who believe that women aren’t capable of coping with the rigorous, often unpleasant realities of competing in elite sport.
Phone-ins and social media networks are alight with righteous indignation propelled voices claiming that if women can’t stand the intensity of the motivational tactics (which may or may not include verbal sparring and insults) required, perhaps they should reacquaint themselves with the more suitable challenges of the kitchenette.
Toby Young, Daily Mail 1st April 2016.
You could say that drawing attention to this sort of thing is giving the trolls what they want.
That Toby Young will be reclining on his chaise longue this morning, clad in smoking jacket and dragging on the big old Cuban parked between his educated lips while he cackles at the outrage his Daily Mail article provoked.
I recently wrote a piece for my other love, The Football Ramble, about the minefield that is celebrating a sporting achievement by someone who espouses unconscionable views or, as is more likely these days, inappropriate sexual behaviour.
You can read it here, if you care to, but I know many of you instantly drop into a coma when football is mentioned, so I’ll precis it.
I conclude that there has to be a separation between achievement and the individual, because the alternative is to fully endorse everything the subject has done in their life, even if you don’t know about it.
It’s not a comfortable position, especially when you’re dealing with the likes of Tyson Fury, but what alternative is there? To not admire anyone or anything ever, in case the person involved turns out to have views that differ from your own?
I’ll take my chances, if that’s ok.
Is everyone clear now?
Although I have to say, Zakia, if you’re going to insist on using words like ‘pluralism’, ‘multitude’, ‘condemn’ and ‘hear’, you’re almost certainly going to confuse your target demographic.
Anyone with half a brain has, after all, worked this out for themselves.
“Our Nation is unalterably committed to protecting our citizens, routing terror wherever it exists, and building a safer, better world of greater opportunity and freedom for all peoples. We will not rest until we succeed.”
Peter Bucklitsch, the UKIP candidate for Wimbledon in the 2015 election, Twitter, 3rd September 2015.
This video of Angela Merkel awkwardly comforting a teenage Palestinian refugee during a school discussion has gone viral under the hashtag #MerkelStrokes.
The theory being that the German Chancellor is unable to deal with it when directly confronted with the implications of her policies.