Wednesday, 9 February 2011

The power of a label

An excellent post from Daniel Hannan:
The excuse is a telling one. The Labour politicians who taunted Paul Maynard, a clever, charming and energetic Conservative MP who suffers from mild cerebral palsy, say they stopped the moment they realised he had a disability. In other words, they think it fair game to make faces at someone who has a tic or another mannerism, but not when that mannerism results from a medical condition.

The more you think about this distinction, the more you realise how artificial it is. Man is fallen, and none of us is perfect. One person might have a squint, another might spit as he talks, a third might have a more severe disability. All such conditions are, to a large extent, beyond our control. Yet making jokes about, say, someone’s baldness, or short temper, is considered fair game.

I recommend the whole article.

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