What is it about blame that people find irresistible? We have all done it. “They should do something about it,” is a common blame phrase. Or “If it weren’t for X, Y would never have happened,” is another.
I think blame is the trap we fall into when we are sidetracked from the pursuit of answers to our questions. Frustrated with finding that some things don’t have answers available readily, we grab onto blame and hang on tight.
There are some circumstances where this may be understandable. When someone dies young from a disease not caught in time, or in an accident, fingers are pointed. When wars happen, politics and religion are blamed. When drought inflicts its fiery wrath, we blame global warming or bad civic planning or water hogs. If we miss out on a plum job, we feel resentful towards the person who was successful.
Maybe some of these things are part of the grief process and we move to the next stage. And maybe the blame is justified at times. But it is never good and it can so easily degenerate into harmful behaviours. I am seeing this at the moment where not only blame is being attributed unfairly, but also it is inspiring the bully and mob mentality.
If you know anything about me, you know how fucking angry bullying makes me, particularly when it is inflicted upon a friend. I have a few friends at the moment going through dark days because they are being victimised by a mob of petty, little people with Napoleonic aspirations.
In this ‘enlightened age’, a rational person may think that (a) it happens less, and (b) there are avenues to pursue, when it does happen, to redress the imbalance.
Despite there being oh so many ‘procedures’ in place in the society and community of which I am a part, they are never an easy avenue to take. Why? Because you are branded a ‘whistle blower’ or, in Strine-Speak, a dobber. Once branded you never live it down. Believe me, I know this from personal experience. I was being bullied some years back and decided the only recourse open to me was the ‘procedure’. On the surface everything was done by the book. But I haven’t been able to work in that industry for more than a decade. Word gets around! I’ve been branded a trouble maker, someone who does not play well with others, overly sensitive etc etc simply because I stood up for my rights.
But this is not about me. It is about my friends. I just wish it known that I understand what is going on.
And if you are reading this and think you may be playing a role in the systematic victimisation of any of my friends, then also know that I am on to you! And I have nothing to lose since my reputation is already burnt into my skin. If I can find a way, I WILL REDRESS THE BALANCE. That’s a promise.