Do microaggressions applying to everyone? If not who do they apply to?

I’m on my journey to finding justice for the rape attack against me by an unknown Pakistani/Indian immigrant who forced his way into my home. I’m a single woman living alone. Additionally I have a long term, uncontrolled health condition which in the UK would be classed as a disability. The politics behind this situation has left me with a lot of questions, specifically about identity politics and the usefulness of them. Political correctness was a key issue in my not reporting the crime against me for three years.

One of my questions I raised in my Podcast (found in Podbean, Social 3state) regarded microaggressions. I am aware this is a big thing in US colleges and universities and has found it’s way over to the UK. The focus is particularly prominent for people of a minority race and women. I think good understanding and acknowledge for certain hardships a group faces is a necessity but is the answer to construct endless lists of what a microaggression is? It was reported by the BBC, April 24 2017, that staff had been warned that avoiding eye contact with pupils could be interpreted as a racial microaggression. As a person with a long term health condition I maybe more attuned to people with invisible disabilities. I too have difficulty with making eye contact in certain circumstances.

It seems to me, disability is always the last thought. As a disabled person I hear “microagressions” everyday. These might be spoken, they may be in written form on social media or in a text message. Examples include…

“I’m having such a bad hair day, I’m so depressed.”

“That really freaked my out, I almost had a fit/seizure.”

“That was so scary I had a heart attack.”

Microaggressions are heard by everyone, everyday but only certain groups it seems, are at the forefront of real concern. Another examples is on a morning television show Piers Morgan was interviewing ex EDL (English Defense League) leader, Tommy Robinson. The interview seemed to go well and debate was heard equally on both sides. Overall it was a good, informative interview with someone so controversial. However, Piers seemed to take the moral high ground all of a sudden when Tommy held up the Quran in his hand, holding it at head height. Piers accused Tommy of being disrespectful, but didn’t go on to explain how this action was disrespectful. From my own perspective I did not see any disrespect in Tommy’s actions. One of those reasons is that I have never once in my life heard someone on television get pulled up for saying God’s name in vain. Shows like TOWIE (The only way is Essex) explicitly repeat “Oh my God” almost to the degree of a catchphrase. Is this not disrespectful  to Christians? Yet it continues. Why should we not take the Bible seriously, but we should take the Quran so seriously.

It is worth mentioning Oxford University had to retract their warning, issuing and apology four days later. With their apology they acknowledged their “insensitivity” to autistic people. Now, is that “insensitivity” or is it by their standards a “microaggression”. Furthermore, is a “microagression” actually just insensitivity? Aggression would be defined as a hostile, forceful act. An act I suppose, with intent. Microaggression is defined as an act or statement made with indirect or subtle discrimination towards marginalised groups. The act or statement may also be unintentional.  If an act or a statement is unintentional, should we really label it “aggression” or would the proper wording be carelessness

I believe “microaggressions” absolutely apply to certain groups and not others. There is too much evidence to suggest otherwise. If we are to live in a fair, just, equal society, then “microaggressions” should apply to all and be distributed to all in an equal manner. Realistically, this cannot happen. To attempt to do this would create an immensely oppressed society. However as it stands now, certain groups are overlooked whilst other groups are bowed down to, this is even taught in our elite universities. With such an obvious inequality, can people be blamed for feeling resentment in society today?

Tell me your thoughts on the matter I would love to know.




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