lunes, 5 de junio de 2017

Tried in the court of Twitter | MercatorNet | June 6, 2017 |

Tried in the court of Twitter

| MercatorNet | June 6, 2017 |

Tried in the court of Twitter

Tennis legend Margaret Court is being crucified for opposing same-sex marriage
Michael Cook | Jun 5 2017 | comment 

More and more our debates about same-sex marriage resemble the toxic rhetoric of the 1930s. Even before World War II broke out, Fascists and Communists were using vile language to break the spirit of their adversaries.
George Orwell was immersed in this rhetoric while he was fighting in Catalonia during the Spanish Civil War. Communists were attacking Trotskyites; anarchists were attacking Communists. It was after exposure to the hallucinatory language in their newspapers and pamphlets that he composed his famous essay “Politics and the English Language” and his masterpiece Nineteen Eighty-Four.
One of the people Orwell probably had in mind was the chief prosecutor at the Moscow show trials in the mid-30s, Andrey Vyshinksy. He was an expert at browbeating – and beating -- his victims into confessing imaginary crimes. Apart from physical torture and threats to the families of the accused, there was the mental torture of his remarkable gift for vituperation. However absurd his insults, they must have stung like a whip.
A stinking pile of human refuse ... the most contemptible, the most incorrigible and decayed dishonourable elements ... accursed vermin ... accursed cross between a fox and a swine ... Let's push the bestial hatred they bear our leaders back down their own throats!
And today? Just look at the treatment given to Australian tennis legend Margaret Court for opposing same-sex marriage. She is an extraordinary sportswoman, who still holds the record for the most Grand Slam titles. Nowadays she is an outspoken fundamentalist pastor who leads a church group in Perth. Late last month she wrote an open letter lamenting that the national carrier, Qantas, was backing same-sex marriage.
I am disappointed that Qantas has become an active promoter for same-sex marriage. I believe in marriage as a union between a man and a woman as stated in the Bible. Your statement leaves me no option but to use other airlines where possible for my extensive travelling.
The reaction on Twitter out-Vyshinskyed Vyshinsky:
A Nazi witch from way back ... So Margaret Court not only a Homophobe she's also a Bigot ... How anyone can consider this woman a "legend" is beyond me. No amount of trophies can make up for being this dogshit a human being.
Ah, but that’s just the dark side of the Twitterverse, you might say. But celebrities in the tennis world were beating the same drum.
Former world number one John McEnroe released a satirical video laced with the F-bomb which concluded, “when same-sex marriage finally becomes legal in Australia, I will personally call my good friend Elton John to host the biggest same-sex mass wedding ceremony ever seen in the Margaret Court Arena.”
Martina Navratilova was more Vyshinky-ish in her open letter denouncing Court. Just as Vyshinky denounced the defendants at the show trials for absurd crimes, Navratilova turns the Australian into a human rights criminal:
It is now clear exactly who Court is: an amazing tennis player, and a racist and a homophobe. Her vitriol is not just an opinion. She is actively trying to keep LGBT people from getting equal rights (note to Court: we are human beings, too). She is demonising trans kids and trans adults everywhere ...
How much blood will be on Margaret's hands because kids will continue to get beaten for being different? This is not OK. Too many will die by suicide because of this kind of intolerance, this kind of bashing and yes, this kind of bullying. This is not OK.
Tarring opponents as murderers of innocents was a familiar tactic to Vishinsky. Was Navratilova remembering his words about an assassinated Bolshevik ally of Stalin?
These mad dogs of capitalism tried to tear limb from limb the best of the best of our Soviet land. They killed one of the men of the revolution who was most dear to us, that admirable and wonderful man, bright and joyous as the smile on his lips was always bright and joyous, as our new life is bright and joyous. They killed our Kirov ...
But just as the mastermind of Kirov’s murder was never identified (although hundreds confessed), the cause of young gay suicides is far from certain. It could be that they are victims of severe psychological instability. But proof isn’t needed in show trials; Margaret Court is guilty.
And “racist”? Where did this come from? The Twitterverse dug up a sentence in newspaper articles in 1970 – that’s one sentence uttered 47 years ago, by the way – in which she had some kind words for South Africa’s policy of apartheid. No one bothered to ask what she thinks now.
Supported by many others in the tennis world, Navratilova has called for the Margaret Court Arena, a major tennis venue in Melbourne, to be renamed.
We celebrate free speech, but that doesn't mean it is free of consequences - not punishment, but consequences. We should not be celebrating this kind of behaviour, this kind of philosophy. The platform people like Margaret Court use needs to be made smaller, not bigger.
Vyshinksky would have applauded this. That’s precisely what the Bolsheviks did. St Petersburg became Leningrad; Vyatka became Kirov; Tsaritsyn became Stalingrad. Someone in the Twitterverse had an even better idea: “They shouldn't change the name of the arena; they should burn it to the ground.”
There is one difference between the arguments of the 1930s and now: it’s mainly one side which is doing the browbeating. Yes, there are Christians who call down God’s wrath upon the LGBTI community, but they are few and marginal. Just search Twitter; you won’t find many. Margaret Court has expressed her opinions bluntly, but she is basically supporting the legal status quo in Australia. According to the Marriage Amendment Act 2004, marriage is between a man and a woman. How can defending the law be hate speech?
Abusive language and personal attacks are smothering political debate about same-sex marriage in three ways. First, substantial issues are shelved. Second, their victims withdraw from the debate. And third, wannabee Vishinskys become brainless automatons incapable of rational discourse. In Orwell’s prescient words:
When one watches some tired hack on the platform mechanically repeating the familiar phrases — bestial, atrocities, iron heel, bloodstained tyranny, free peoples of the world, stand shoulder to shoulder — one often has a curious feeling that one is not watching a live human being but some kind of dummy .... The appropriate noises are coming out of his larynx, but his brain is not involved ... And this reduced state of consciousness, if not indispensable, is at any rate favourable to political conformity.
What a great description of the Twitter-celebrity nexus!
Michael Cook is editor of MercatorNet. 

“Now that you’re here …  we’ve got a small favour to ask. More people are reading MercatorNet, but far fewer are donating. Unlike many online magazine, we haven’t put up a paywall and we don't have lots of obtrusive advertising. So you can see why we need to ask for your help.
MercatorNet’s independent, vibrant and informative articles take a lot of time, money and hard work to produce. But we do it because we believe our views on human dignity matter – and because they might be your views as well.

If every fan of MercatorNet donated just $10, our future would be much more secure.
    Donate Now   
- See more at:


June 6, 2017

Conducting a rational argument about sensitive issues is getting harder and harder. Take Islam and same-sex marriage. Fanatical Muslims in London struck again over the weekend, killing pedestrians with a speeding car and then hacking to death as many as they could. (See the article below.) Their minds have shut down to all rational discourse; no arguments will convince them; no words will provoke them to question their world view. 
Similarly, as Australian tennis legend Margaret Court has learned over the past few days, many supporters of same-sex marriage have the same mental habits. They are not interested in debate; they slip automatically into vilification. It reminds me of nothing so much as the Moscow Show Trials of the 1930s, in which the accused were automatically found guilty and were subjected to the scabrous and absurd abuse. See our feature below

Michael Cook 



Tried in the court of Twitter

By Michael Cook
Tennis legend Margaret Court is being crucified for opposing same-sex marriage

Read the full article
Way of the Warrior Kid

By Harley J. Sims
Boys deserve a better primer than a guide to hero worship

Read the full article
Largest Japanese population decline on record

By Shannon Roberts
Births fall below 1 million for the first time since 1899.

Read the full article
Britain needs to tackle uncomfortable questions

By Bill Durodie
The PM says 'enough is enough' -- but what does that mean?

Read the full article
How gender became political, and the political became personal

By Wayne J. Ottenbreit
One family’s engagement with the new identity culture.

Read the full article
Senator Sasse has questions and answers about freedom and virtue

By Sheila Liaugminas
Now that his provocative new book is out, more people are noticing.

Read the full article
‘Why I am a Jew’

By Michael Cook
A leading British rabbi explains his faith in a short animated video

Read the full article
The Lego Batman Movie

By Rachele Mocchetti
Action, humour, and unrelenting self-irony.

Read the full article
Facebook enters the population mapping game

By Marcus Roberts
Does this mean census forms are a thing of the past?

Read the full article
Grandmother bridges generation gap

By Jennifer Minicus
Henry likes to take his time.

Read the full article
A Christian abortion doctor? On the ignorance, arrogance, and violence of the Pro-Choice cause

By Charles K. Bellinger
An abortion doctor's inadequate apologia.

Read the full article
The engagement ring loses its sparkle

By Helena Adeloju
Whoever said 'Diamonds are forever' hadn't reckoned with the millennials.

Read the full article

MERCATORNET | New Media Foundation 

Suite 12A, Level 2, 5 George Street, North Strathfied NSW 2137, Australia 

Designed by elleston

No hay comentarios: