PM’s Fox Hunting Statement: Case of Study for Political Analysis

 “This is a situation on which individuals will have one view or the other, either pro or against. As it happens, personally I have always been in favour of fox hunting, and we maintain our commitment, we have had a commitment previously as a Conservative Party, to allow a free vote. It would allow Parliament the opportunity to take the decision on this.”

Theresa May, on fox hunting

The UK’s Prime Minister made this statement last week, answering the question why she was committed to bringing back fox hunting. Mrs May’s response, as cited above, could be used as an example of political analysis, as it reflects the impact of the various forces participating in taking a political decision.

Breaking down the statement into key points, we can distinguish that:

  • Fox hunting as a subject is a controversy
  • Mrs May’s personal opinion leans in favour of fox hunting
  • Mrs May is currently the leader of the Conservative Party
  • The Conservative Party has had commitments upon this issue
  • Mrs May and the Conservative Party want the Parliament to take this decision

Fox hunting, as a form of pest control, has been banned in the UK in the beginning of the previous decade, on the grounds of being an ineffective and cruel activity. All across the UK, proponents and opponents of fox hunting stand their grounds, presenting arguments that vary from animal rights and effectiveness to cultural tradition and economy.

Therefore, the Prime Minister is right to open her statement with underlining the controversial nature of this subject. She recognises that voters will be divided on this matter, either pro or against it.

Next, Mrs May inserts her personal opinion on the issue, as a civilian and a politician, saying “personally I have always been in favour of fox hunting”. The individual’s personal drive and opinions is an all-present element in human behaviour and, consequently, political behaviour as well. Entering a political party, to which Mrs May refers right after in the same statement, is theoretically teaming – up with politicians that share the same aspects.

After that, the PM connects her own beliefs with the Conservative Party’s commitments. Here resides the heart of modern politics. Either referring to commitments they had to voters or lobbyists, Mrs May quickly declares her Party’s liability in accordance with them. In general, commitments like this might be the promises that lead a Party to leadership or help them maintain their position, as they ensure the votes they need to succeed.

Finally, the Prime Minister’s response concludes in the Conservative Party’s will to take this issue to the Parliament. Allowing a free vote on this issue could supposedly reflect the whole controversial character of the issue and, as such, could be a difficult decision to make.

All in all, in just a few up – front lines, Theresa May had not only declared her stance in favour of fox hunting, but rather, draw a map on how a decision is taken in modern democratic political systems. Several bidirectional forces interfere and differences in aspects and interests ignite political fights and flammable argumentations.

Lobbying for Human Rights

Politics and economy share a bond that cannot be easily separated. For many people, economy defines politics and, therefore, this bond is practically indissoluble.

However, politics extend to a much wider range.

Lobbying for human rights, promoting and protecting them, is an activity which seldom includes any direct economic profit or interests. As such, important as they may be, these policies are much more difficult to be supported. Promoting legislation which supports, for instance, offshore company activities is a much more lucrative field in comparison with the promotion of ex – felons’ social inclusion.

So, do the economic restrictions condemn lobbying for human rights to be relatively powerless?

The power of human and civil rights’ promotion relies on their popularity. Living in democratic societies, a legislation’s popularity is being translated into votes. On a purely pragmatic level, governments introduce such legislation in order to satisfy the popular demand and attract voters. As a consequence, lobbying for human rights often uses as pressing points the government’s need to impress, along with a more affective language.

This fact also underlines the significance of raising awareness as part of human rights lobbying. Society needs to be aware of the subject and actually care about it. This is, practically, what makes an issue popular.

All in all, human and civil rights’ promotion has minor economic interest. It is not supported by companies or industries and does not use this kind of profit as a lure. However, under proper preparation and handling, this type of lobbying can guarantee the consent of the majority, which is the real power in democracies.

The Human Rights and The Wheel of Fortune

Racism and indifference are being cultivated under the mentality of “we and them”. People tend to form groups – whether those be countries, tribes, parties or even gangs -, named “we”, and being hostile against other groups, “them”.

However, who we were born is being decided by random factors. Just like the randomness of a Wheel of Fortune, we could have been born as men, women or neither, in Asia, Europe, South or North America, Africa or Oceania as well. Therefore, neither “we” nor “them” could be defined by all these factors we were never able to control. Simply, we are all defined solely from our choices.

The Wheel of Fortune spins, and you are born as a girl in certain areas of western Nepal. When you are menstruating, you are being banished and risk to lose your life from cold or an animal attack.

The Wheel spins, and you are a Syrian man. Your country is being bombed by the western forces of the USA, France, UK, and other forces like Russia, Turkey and Saudi Arabia. Each of this countries bombs your hometown for its own distinct interests. Forced to flee from a living hell like that, you risk yours and your family’s lives to seek a shelter in western countries, where more and more people see you as a “deserter” or a “potential terrorist”.

The Wheel spins once again, and you are now a person caught in the middle of a tribal war in Africa.

And the Wheel of Fortune spins forever, every time a baby is born anywhere in the world.

What human rights try to do is to implement a universality of their own power. In other words, they strive to create a world where random factors (like gender or nationality) could no longer ruin people’s lives.

Bottom line, yes, we are all equal. Judging and discriminating against people for all the facts they were never able to control is as stupid as blaming a human for not being able to breathe underwater. And it is high time for humanity to banish stupidity from its societies.

 

The Trump’s Trump Effect

First things first, a foreign country’s electoral system is not about to be judged by me. Americans voted for Trump in the American elections.

However, every American president is a person of tremendous political power and this power reverberates to the political structures of all countries. The previous week, nations all around the globe witnessed their own conservative political forces celebrating Donald Trump’s victory. Many citizens from different countries rejoice the so-called “end of globalization”, ever since the USA election results came out. Of course, this reaction came as no surprise, as well.

It has been more than five years that national-conservative parties began to steadily rise in many countries’ political systems. In addition, neo-nazism seems to have risen in parallel with the ascent of ISIS. As most reasonable people can tell, both western and eastern types  of ethnicism are not adversaries at all; they are, to be more precise, siblings, born by the same mother: hatred.

But what had led the whole world to turn once again to hatred, fear and xenophobia?

It seems that, as the atrocities of World War II fade from memory and the fragile economical structure had proven to be shaken, the western nations function like insecure people, turning into aggressive and hostile communities. The western world had nourished an economical system which created its very own instability. This instability stroke fear into the hearts of citizens and these terrified people now try to seek shelter even deeper the system, raising the fundamental mindset of capitalism as their shields.

This is the trump effect. Everywhere in the world there are people who cultivate the mentality of xenophobia and the fear of change in order to control smaller but more manageable portion of people. By making the whole world hostile to their eyes, the demagogues use fear to maintain their power and lead other people to serve their personal economical and political interests.

Once again, it all ends up to a simple, yet universal rule: we are defined not by our origins, but by our choices. Leaders of ISIS, North Korea or western conservatives, anyone who tries to spread fear and hatred are all connected and, eventually, defined by their very same choices.

“Get Over Your Racism” 101

Simple steps for simple thinking.

Realize that:

  1. Our origins are being defined by mere luck.
    No one is able to choose where they born, and therefore they cannot decide or control their ethnicity, their historical background, their families’ wealth and, most of the times, their own religion. It is simply inevitable.
  2. The ongoing historical situation.
    There is a war dammit! You are highly encourage to read a few history books or scientific articles on subjects like the endless conflict in Syria.
  3. Borders are man-made.
    Countries had been divided by humans in order to better organize their communities and their protection against any potential threat. Neither God nor Mother Nature has anything to do with that. We made borders, we define borders.
  4. There is no ethnicity without criminals.
    Not a single one. Some of the refugees are dangerous and potential criminals. Some of the Europeans are also dangerous and potential criminals. Too many of the political, economical and religious leaders of the western civilization are unpunished, first-class criminals. The point is, no one has the right to stigmatize people for who they are instead of what they have done.

Got it?
This is the fundamental logical thinking. It is pretty much common sense, and guess what? It just does not get any simpler.

 

Within And Beyond Gender

Restrictions set by strong social doctrines demand men to be strong and masculine and women to be graceful and feminine. In order to maintain their power, those doctrines are being presented as part of a natural and biological law, which is supposed to strictly define a certain sexual behaviour as well. However, the very existence of homosexual and intersex people – a fact that our society strives to ignore – underlines a simple fact: gender is not but a social structure.

The traditional roles of “man” and “woman” have been set by the social norm as ruthless Symplegades stones, while anything that sails in the area between must be crashed and washed away. Gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgendered and intersex people are being labeled “unnatural” and live as outcasts, frequently being victims of hatred as well.

For everyone who keep their mind open, it is clear that these restrictions are based on a rather unreasonable argumentation.

As a matter of fact, gender and sexuality do not function in a “black or white” logic. LGBTI people are not but all the other beautiful colours between red and violet, all the shades between black and white. And this entirely a natural phenomenon.

As far as those people rights are being concerned, what could be done in order to restore this unjust discrimination of our society?

In my opinion, it seems unreasonable for the law – which is supposed to promote equality and justice to maintain the gender on its legal texts. In many countries, for instance, gay marriage is being prohibited on the basis that the law defines “marriage between man and woman” exclusively. However, if the legal system is truly dedicated to implement equality, those terms should be reformed in order to refer to people as individual beings and not as parts of certain social groups, such as “men” and “women”.

The Disabled and the Austerity Policies

In these years of economical and humanitarian crisis, people with disabilities in the European Union have to endure more and more challenges in their daily lives. In contradiction with the plan of strategy Europe 2020, the policies of austerity result in aggravating the social and economic life of the disabled.

As a matter of fact, austerity leads to:

  • the reduction in necessary funds, through cuts in valuable disability allowances in addition to a significant raise in taxes
  • social exclusion of the disabled due to the reduction of their income
  • the disabled tend to be seen as people committed frauds against the system and/or be accused of deteriorating society’s welfare

These trends contribute to the social exclusion of people with disabilities and promote unjust discriminations, as well. However, it is unacceptable to treat the disabled as a burden for our society. Actually, we should always bear in mind that a society in which the disabled are being excluded is one built on weak and unfair foundation.

In the end, poverty of people with disabilities is neither natural nor logical; it is a social and political flaw and, as such, it can and should be rectified. Continue reading “The Disabled and the Austerity Policies”

Memo: Refugees and Migrants

Living in our little fast-paced world, we often tend to forget some basic facts. The reasons and the roots of immigration are one of these.

Being raised in regions tormented by war,conflict and fear, refugees are not but people who seek their inborn rights as human beings. They pursue their rights to life, to education and even to freedom of thought. Hunted down by the Syrian conflicts, ISIS terror and threats, those people could not possibly have any other substantial option in order to survive but to immigrate. To them, Europe stands as one of the last remaining sanctuaries of their fundamental rights.

Closing the gates of Europe to them might appeal as an effective way to ensure the stability of european societies, but it also signifies the gradual loss of Europe’s fundamental ideals and identity.

It is true that this idealistic criticism on the European Union’s policy seems unable to offer any practical solution to the current crisis. However, this aspect underlines the importance for the Union to redirect its policies in order to guarantee not the temporary welfare of certain member states, but the dignity and the rights of both its citizens and the refugees that seek shelter within the European borders.

Building bridges: Realpolitik and Human Rights

Under the pressure of the greatest migrant crisis since the World War II, Europe seems to struggle in order to maintain the balance between the security of its nations and the protection of migrants’ fundamental rights and dignity. Realpolitik is the political aspect that underlines the significance of power and security in politics, under the light of given factors. For the western civilization, both the terms of power and security are tightly bound with the economy and financial welfare.

As a matter of fact, the European Union’s economy seems to had been derailed long before the migrant crisis even began. The economic crisis and the demographic ageing of the continent’s population are the major factors which jeopardize the Union’s economical well-being.

Consequently, within its ageing societies, Europe can seize the opportunity to boost their nations’ productivity by embracing and managing the waves of immigration. Having their natural rights in dignity and equality secured, migrants could help the Union to stabilize its economy and power as they can contribute to the member states’ workforce effectively.

A policy which would encourage the inclusion of migrants in the European societies and workforce would also be one that focuses on the values of power, security and effectiveness; or, in other words, realpolitik.

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