Friday, June 11, 2010

A RAMBLE ON RHETORIC

Many controversies are billed by respectable opinion as very complex, hard to understand and cast in "shades of grey." The same worthies often call for a repudiation of "partisanship" in favour of "moderation" and "respectful dialogue." This all has the air of something only an ass would question. But it is often a cloak for hypocrisy the so-called moderate may or may not be aware of.

It is a good idea in such situations to ask yourself whose story is not being told from her own point of view, who it is who is not being heard from. Finding this story, in fact, just trying to find this story will often tear the mask off the smooth-faced "moderates" to show a face contorted by visciousness or ignorance.

Why, after all, do some people scream in such an ugly manner? It is often because they have already tried the measured tones the moderates affect to admire, and have not been listened to by them.

And what if, for example, a "moderate" parks a tank on somebody's foot and affects astonishment and dismay when the victim shouts and curses? Is it not obscene for our smooth-faced gentleman to prattle on at this point about "moderate dialogue" or the conducting of discussions "in a tone of mutual respect"?

1 comment:

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