Tag Archives: #Me Too

Fake News

Hoax – Word of the Day

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From the dawn of time to the Lock Ness Monster, to Joseph Goebbels, Lavrentiy Beria, the Vietnam lie, the Watergate Seven, to Weapons of Mass Destruction, to the constancy of daily lies pedalled across the world by politicians, media, businesses, rogue scientists, fundamentalist religious types (remember Jim Jones, David Koresh, Pat Robertson), or the hoax about a hoax – the radio show of Orson Wells which featured his War of the Worlds alien invasion, and which was said to have created mass panic and evacuation of New York, now proven to be an invention created from a handful of hysterical phone calls and an attack on a civic facility thought to be an alien fortress. It certainly helped Wells and the radio station maintain popularity and gain sponsors.

Hoaxes, scams, fake news have all been around since Adam (a story which includes a scam). Generally they fall into two categories, harmful (weapons of mass destruction), and harmless (Loch Ness Monster). They are all fabrications, lies. It is difficult now to believe anything that is reported in mainstream news, at least until it has been checked. But then, people can be fake in their relationships, pretending to be someone or something.

Black Lives Matter, #Me Too, are also testimony to how fake news, lies, fabrications distort race, gender, and destroy individuals and relationships. In Australia the plight of indigenous children removed from families, based on cultural arrogance and self serving mythology, and the devastating findings of the Royal Commission into Child Abuse has shown how fake reputations, scams and lies enabled vulnerable children to be broken.

Yet, I remain optimistic. In my daily journey I meet many, many people who restore my belief that most people value each other at some level, that the human endeavour is still somehow linked to the golden rule (treat others as you would want to be treated), no matter how we might feel that that is tenuous, the anecdotal evidence is strong. Importantly, I remind myself that there, as the old saying goes, but for the grace of God there go I! Who am I? No one is perfect, and so we need to gentle with each other.

Lies will continue, there will be hoaxes, scams, fake news and distortions. Our response surely must be to discern the truth, but also to hold each other in the space of love, trust, healing, and above all, to listen. The power of listening can be healing in itself, and in the long term the way to truth. To listen to the vulnerable (and who is not vulnerable in some way?), the broken (and who is not broken in some way?), to listen to each other generously and deeply. That way myths come undone, lies are made plain, pain is held, anxiety understood, vanity deconstructed, fear disarmed … in the end, in a world where fake news and distrust could overpower us, we have each other, not bury our heads in activity, but to value each other, build trust, support, resilience, that will enable us to face the world together. Together we can rise above fake.

”No one can lie, no one can hide anything, when s/he looks directly into someone’s eyes.” Paul Coelho

”A lie cannot live.” Martin Luther King Jnr.

Paul,

pvcann.com

 

 

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The Happy Flaunt

via Daily Prompt: Flaunt

The Satin Bowerbird a video by Eliot Burch (via YouTube) an intense and class act, flaunting his bower, and using his wiles to attract a mate.

As humans we do that a bit, we engage a person and flaunt ourselves in various ways, our humur, intelligence, sexy looks, wealth maybe, some talent we may have, power and more. Flaunting is signalling to others – look at me. And we do. There’s that old saying, “If you’ve got it flaunt it.” But in this age we have learned that flaunting wealth is certainly crass (though many still do it), flaunting power is vulgar (though some still do it), and flaunting our sexiness may, sadly,  be misjudged.

In this age of #Me Too we are reminded of the delicate balance between signalling “Look at me” to (mostly) women being at risk of sexual harassment, worse, assault. Modern pornography (not to be confused with the erotic or an appreciation of the human form) has reduced women and men to mere functionary objects, to the point that they are simply a function of their genitals. Surely this is an abuse? Objectification leads to consumption, and we sexually consume those we sexually objectify. Objectification is also a power exchange in which the object has no power, whoever is objectified is used, positioned, directed and consumed. I don’t have a definitive opinion on sex dolls, but the mere fact they can be bought is further proof of the reduction of the real person to an object.

#Me Too, which had its origins in 2007, was coined by Tarana Burke who was using the phrase to promote empowerment through empathy for women of colour. In 2017 Alyssa Milano encouraged the use of the phrase as a hashtag on Twitter. Both have had a powerful community impact, and for the better, though I think we have a long way to go to undo and prevent further occurrences of sexual harassment.

Another protest from women has been around the manner of dress, that a sexy look, or a provocative or flaunting look does not equal consent to sex. Flaunting shouldn’t lead to being drugged and raped (as has happened in some cases) or sexually touched, or verbally assaulted. Women and men are not sexual disposable objects, they’re not to be used and thrown away. Soemhow we need to get back to being people and to sex as mutual embodied experience, and as invitation not as right.

I hope men and women still flaunt, its refreshing and pleasant, there’s something beautiful about the human form as Renoir, Gauguin, D.H. Lawrence, Robert maplethorpe, and Anais Nin would testify to, but I hope we can encourage that as a safe and natural behaviour devoid of power and abuse. Flaunting isn’t an invitation to objectify and use and abuse, it is simply a gift for the eye and heart to treasure. The invitation may come.

Paul,

pvcann.com

 

 

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Filed under life, mindfulness, nature, quote, Sex