31/10/12 Know your Enemy

‘So it is said that if you know your enemies and know yourself, you can win a hundred battles without a single loss.

‘If you only know yourself, but not your opponent, you may win or may lose.

‘If you know neither yourself nor your enemy, you will always endanger yourself.’

‘The Art of War’ Sun Tzu 2nd Century BC

Austerity

Benefit Cuts

Housing Benefits Capped

£Millions cut from disability benefits

Social engineering

Tax Evasion

Tax Avoidance

Benefit Scroungers

Tory Toffs

Arrogance

Greed

Poverty

Privatisation

Government Contracts

Atos

We’re in this together

Big Society

Last night I stayed with Mark and Cara – a couple living in Gatehouse of Fleet, miles from where Mark picked me up and will drop me off again in Newton Stewart.

I didn’t know these people until last night and today I have the run of their lovely home.

Last night we talked about the status of being a stranger and how that lasts for just a fleeting moment.

Mark, amongst other things, is a forager – you can find out more about him here –

http://www.gallowaywildfoods.com

He finds wild foods – plants, mushrooms, fungi, roots and so on and cooks and eats them.

My mind was immediately cast back to the near death of Nicholas Evans, the author of The Horse Whisperer having eaten poisonous mushrooms in the Cromarty area of Scotland.

Suicide pact? No.

Mistaken identity? That’s the one.

I was amazed at how quickly I mentally placed foraging under the heading of ‘Not for me’ and ‘Dangerous’ possibly ‘Treacherous’.

I am, I’m sad to say, a product of our times. I eat stuff because Tescos, Heinz, Kellogg’s and all the other purveyors of fine food tell me it is safe to do so.

I don’t eat stuff in fields, or things I find on the road…except for the occasional fly…but that’s ok, they’re safe – I Googled it…and they – whoever they are – should know – shouldn’t they?

Eating things that I find – well, that’s…DANGEROUS!!

So what’s missing from my picture?

Knowledge for one thing.

It’s ok though, I filled in all the gaps with prejudice and fear.

Experience? Well, I once heard on the news that…

Ditto.

Close your eyes…no, that’s never going to work…come to think of that we’re in trouble now because you won’t be reading any of this…

Should you open your eyes, imagine what the following people are like…

Take your time…

A Tory

A Liberal

A Labour supporter

A Green

Someone who is black

Someone who is white

Someone who follows a faith

Someone with a mental health problem

Someone who is poor

A millionaire

A businessman

A housewife

A business woman

A police officer

A social worker

A tabloid journalist

A house husband

It’s a good job that, like me, you have no prejudices.

Personally, when the above words are presented in front of me, I imagine nothing…everyone is different….

Er….

Guilty as charged.

Know your enemy. Know yourself…only then will you know victory…

The thing is though…

These people…they’re not the enemy.

These people are me, they’re you, they’re us.

Sure, some of these folk may do things that we disagree with, that are discriminatory, that are just plain stupid…

When we suffer the pain of prejudice and discrimination against us we should cry out with one voice-

WE ARE NOT THE ENEMY

So, if you’re not the enemy, and I’m not the enemy, what the Hell are we fighting against?

Ignorance.

Walk a Mile

Chris

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