Reductive Choice

I’ve expressed before the underlying belief that Anne Marie Waters heart is in the right place and her actual understanding pretty deep and nuanced … and heartfelt. (Though I was once moved to update that opinion. And again here on “modesty”.)

Politics is a dirty business, requiring tough choices guaranteed to “offend” at least half your audience. Hypocrisy is inescapable. Apart from my occasional expression of exasperation at her use of sarcasm, I’ve mainly watched her political campaigning from the sidelines as her growing twitter following – fueled by Breitbart and the like, lapped-up the 140-character rhetoric.

This morning however a-propos of nothing in particular, she posted this:

Where to start?

No time or need to be “nice”. Really? I say what about love of humanity? “What’s so funny ’bout ….?” Tough love, sure. Collateral damage, sure. But no time or need to love our neighbours?

A simple binary choice we “have” to make. Where is that “written”?

“Good fences make good neighbours” I say.

Earlier she had posted:

It’s a trope, or a meme, in this environment that people scream “culture (religion) is not race“. All classifications are binary – simple set theory, you’re either in or out – but classes like race and culture are concepts not real world objects. The members of those classes are real human individuals and they are neither defined nor identified by being assigned to any given class. However we define race(s) and culture(s), it’s a matter of identity politics, who identifies who with which. Race (like gender too) is no more hard and fast than culture in defining people and groups of people. We can define binary classes fine, but people are members of many neighbouring and overlapping classes. Race and culture are immensely complex and entangled “properties” when talking about actual people; humans we love.

Good fences (class definitions) make good neighbours (people). But let’s not confuse people with classes, fences with barriers.


Also published on Medium.

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