Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Angry Young Man

Last night I went out with one of my more politically aware mates, and had a caffeine induced rant about politics. It was largely Rachel North's post titled "Angry Young Men" that had got me thinking. Also I've recently experienced as a sudden "waking up" to world affairs, I need to understand what is going on around me, most of my peers don't. That is not healthy.

I got home at about 11pm, still angry and high on caffeine, and I started writing. I wrote a post called "Angry Young Men 2", I wrote about how I am quite angry myself and would consider myself an angry young man. I wrote about how anger is relative and that there are many people further down the scale that are angrier and don't have the ability to vent that anger healthily. I tried to understand why a man only a few years younger than me (Germane Lindsay was 19, I was 22) would be driven to what he did. I wrote about my lack of understanding of the Middle East and today I woke up to the 100th British military death in the war. I went on to criticise my government and the war. But I didn't actually post it, you wont see it on my blog.

I wrote about how of my group of 5 or 6 closest friends, only one of them and myself, haven't been attacked or robbed. In the past 2-3 years one of my friends has been randomly headbutted, punched and robbed twice. Another has been robbed at knife point on a bus. Another has seen one of his housemates dowsed in petrol in the street and attempted to be set alight. Another has been beaten up in a toilet of a bar. I often get verbal abuse, or threats when I'm out. All completely unprovoked, we're just normal decent young blokes and we feel constantly let down. Let down by people our own age that tar our image, the generations above us who accept the image that we're all drug taking thugs, the police that often cannot do anything about these crimes and a government that seems to dismiss what we think.

I'm terrified that if I post something which criticises the war in Iraq (which I feel is wrong) and links this to what happened to me on July 7th that it will be perceived that I am justifying what they did. I am not, I'm trying to understand. I'm terrified that if I publicly criticise the government on here that I will be considered a threat to them. Im terrified that if I compare my (relatively tame) anger to what I guess they were feeling that I will be considered vulnerable to extremists and therefore a threat. I feel I cannot criticise, as to criticise could be interpreted as incitement and justification of these actions. Therefore, I am now angrier than I was before!

Does anyone have any advice? Can I actually publicly criticise my government?

10 Comments:

Blogger Holly Finch said...

POST IT!
you can say what you like, there is supposedly still such a thing as free speech in this country!
h

7:49 AM  
Blogger Holly Finch said...

and GET ANGRY!...it helps

7:49 AM  
Blogger Rachel said...

Post it!

Go for it! I have been kicking off about stuff since July 7th and I am still here. Not just in my blog, but on the BBC and the Sunday Times as well. I posted a very angry, passionate post on the day of the Govt. trying to change the Terror laws so people suspected of terrorism could be locked up for 3 months WITHOUT BEING CHARGED. Fortunately this draconian freedom-trashing law was defeated by more sensible MPs. Some of them even read this

http://rachelnorthlondon.blogspot.com/2005/11/90-days-and-90-nights.html

which I wrote in an angry mood and was amazed to find it was picked up and it went round the world linked on blogs and by email. It ended up in the Times, the BBC and the Guardian. I have not yet been silenced or carted off to prison. They wouldn't bother. This is still a free-ish country. And because of where you were on 7th July, you have an additional force to your voice that means you will be heard more clearly.

Do it if it will make you feel better. It sure as hell does me.

Over to Thomas Jefferson for the last word...

'All tyranny needs to gain a foothold is for people of good conscience to remain silent'

2:49 PM  
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