Which “Trumps”? Racism or Classism: Brexit

This video made the social media rounds following Brexit outcome. It actually occurred prior but that’s not important. The Leave vote played on this kind of thinking and encouraged — subliminally or otherwise — this kind of behavior.

The comments made by Remainers were mostly along the line that the “Seaford lady” is the one who should be deported, or she should be shot, or that she’s stupid and ignorant or some variety. In addition, the Brits who intervened received harsh criticism for their gentle approach.

I thought they handled it beautifully. Getting in her face would have put her on the defensive and make her dig in her heels. She was an embarrassment to the other Brits on the train and in their “polite” way, they let her know exactly that. I was touched by how kind they were to her. She is the one to pity. Read between the lines and you can hear her resentment, her sadness — yes, her sadness. She’s had a miserable life and wants to blame someone. We are so quick to judge her and brand her as “racist” (and yes, of course she is) that we lose any and all compassion for whatever might be her circumstances.And I’m guessing they are not pretty.

Yeah, she’s racist and we’re judgmental. Great. We are more educated than she is – clearly. She even refers to that. So are we being “classist”? Is that less ugly than racist? This is a significant reason for why Leave won. Many people similar to her resent the elite — which, is us, by the way. THAT is what got us here. Our exalted notion that we know more than people like her.

This is all terribly similar to the Trump dynamic. (And I doubt that it’s coincidental – Zeitgeist is at work methinks!) The Donald riles up the monstrous in people and then we call them racist and stupid which just further hardens them and supports the likes of Trump even more.

But as Jim Jeffries an Australian comic says in the video posted below, fighting hate with hate never works. It just doesn’t work. Isn’t it more important to solve the problem? And isn’t the way to do it by bridging these divides. Calling the Seaford Lady  “racist” does nothing to forward the conversation. Only compassion will.

But if being “right” is more important to you, well, then, there you go — you got your referendum outcome. And before you react to these words, before you get defensive, I ask you to please consider them. True listening, after all, is the willingness to change.

Jefferies is as brilliant as he is entertaining:

 

At the end he says: “Ok, this might be the most hippy thing that ever comes out of my mouth, but …the only thing that can beat hate is love… Now it doesn’t always beat hate but … everyone will see them as the asshole. Don’t be the asshole…”

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