Victim Culture

I have had a really hard time. I grew up knowing I must conform to a stultifying masculinity, never living up to it, terrified of being found out. Almost no man fits the “man” box, that particular stereotype. It wounds all men, not just trans women.

It wounds cis women too, treated as sex objects, not taken seriously in careers, subject to predatory men at work, and often violent men in relationships.

There you go- we are all victims of society. Of course some are more victims than others: black lives matter, and people need to keep saying that because not everyone seems to agree. There is an angry response. “All lives matter”- why should those POCs draw attention to their deaths? “Blue [police] lives matter”- the police must be able to protect themselves, and even make mistakes.

Yes, all lives matter. Let us care about all lives cut short.

People of colour remain oppressed by society, but white people are too. If you thought you could get a good job, and your prosperity would increase because you work hard, and your children would be better off than you, and instead you have found your real income reduce and become more precarious: you have a right to be angry, though not to oppress others. And if you see others’ difficulties and oppression a subject of concern, but not yours, you have a right to be heard. Even if you are a racist, that does not make your concerns immaterial: hurting people express unheard hurt in a rebarbative way.

When I don’t feel heard, I shout louder. Sometimes my need to be heard so overwhelms me that I can do nothing else until I feel heard. Or my anger stews inside me.

Even Donald Trump is oppressed: his father sounds horrible, and apparently did not inculcate civilised values in him. So he boasts of assaulting women because he feels that such a man is one William Bush will respect, and then he is called disgusting. Poor man! His acts should be corrected, but his person, or being, has value as a human being created in the image of God, and deserves Love. If he could be loved simply for himself, rather than for what he does, he might not be so destructive.

We are all victims. Let us hear each other’s pain, for all pain matters. You are a child of God. If we could all feel heard, we could get beyond our anger, pain and grievances, and work together in love and creativity. Rather than needing Syrian refugees, Mexicans, women seeking abortions and gay people to be treated as badly as you feel treated- I suffer! They should get what they deserve!- we could hear their pain and seek our common good together. On the day of judgment, people hang their sorrows on the Sorrows Tree, then look at the sorrows of everyone else. You can choose someone else’s sorrows instead, but everyone chooses their own, as less burdensome.

I notice my own expression of anger is so paltry. Real rage at music in the supermarket, or my friend not seeing things exactly as I see them. Then I was uncomfortable, now I am comfortable. These things are incomprehensible; but I know we need heard, we need care and support.

4 thoughts on “Victim Culture

  1. So white men do not get enough attention in this world? And people who hurt other people also need more attention and understanding? White men are doing stupid, violent and painful things in this world for long time, and this must simply stop right now if possible.

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    • Yes. That is what I am saying.

      But a particular kind of attention: that, rather than glorifying those violent and destructive things, condoles with them, and empathises with their softer side, with the aim of bringing that softer side out and reducing the motivation for the violence. It might work with some of them.

      Welcome. Thank you for commenting.

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