Well I’m finally out of the pain woods. I am still having twinges in my right ankle but they are nothing to worry about. The last two weeks have been a bloody nightmare. It gave me an insight into torture and how it can break you. The combination of sever pain and lack of sleep really sent me nuts, and nearly did break me. But only nearly! Annoyingly I used to be better at handling pain, but after my last spine operation, and the spinal injury it fixed that caused four years of excruciating agony, my pain threshold has dropped somewhat. But then a fractured ankle, torn back, trapped nerves and twisted dislocated hip are quite painful, so I shouldn’t knock myself too much. And I got them all DJing in a Goth club. That’ll teach me. Great club though. If you like you clubbing dark and Gothic visit Club Antichrist.
But enough with my moaning about which bits of me have fallen off this month. By not writing a blog for a while I have few things that feel I need to talk about. Firstly I must repeat my congratulations to Channel 4 on their Paralympic coverage. I caught another episode of That Paralympic Show and it blew me away. I absolutely loved the Pimp My Chair section and really feel the show is hitting the spot. Whenever C4 put their mind to making a show aimed at disabled young people, as well as a wider audience, they hit the spot. This will sound big headed but TPS is as good as the show I did with C4 back in the early 90’s, Beat That. Both shows talk to kids in a grown up way and make disability normal. C4 just seems to know how to appeal to disabled youth without alienating everyone else. Well done to everyone involved.
Enough of Happy Mik. Here’s Cross Mik. The first thing that made my blood boil is the content of the speeches the Pope has made during his UK visit. OK, I am an Atheist so I might be biased, but as this is a state visit I am shocked that the Pope feels he has the right to make the theme of his visit a criticism of our secular society. What other head of state would go on a state visit to a sovereign country and feel that they can condemn the way it decides to run itself? The UK is a proud secular democracy, and the laws and rules we live by allow people of all beliefs to live their lives in freedom. Being secular allows all religions to be practiced freely. We even finance faith schools, even if they insist on teaching that faith as fact and thus put their pupils at a disadvantage. Their exam results might be high, but giving beliefs that same educational value as facts could only happen in a secular society like ours. Well, that and a religious dictatorship. But it would only be one faith that would be allowed and not the multitude of religions that flourish here in the UK. Let’s face it, it was only our society becoming more secular that allowed Catholicism to be accepted.
I have never understood why religions seem to be unable to absorb scientific break throughs into their doctrine. I mean Evolution could be said to be the mechanism that God used to make Humankind, and that his hand was at play in placing the Earth in the sweet spot in our Solar System that allowed life to evolve. But no, all advances in our knowledge are seen in the same way. Damaging to the faith. Contradicting dogma. Now it seems that more and more religions are trying to increase the influence they have on how we run our country. This worries me greatly, and those of us who believe a secular society is the only rational way forward must make our voices as loud as those who are religious. We must not allow people like the Pope to use their public voice and huge following to curtail our freedoms and rights. Otherwise the very tolerance of a secular society that may lead to it’s down fall.
Another bug bear lately is the way the London Fire Brigade is planning to impose new contracts on London Firefighters under the threat of being sacked if they do not take them up. The current work practices make total sense to me. Two nine hour days, then two fifteen hour nights followed by break seems the obvious way to go. In the day the firemen have many other duties as well as saving lives. So the day is shorter, so they are fit if they are needed in an emergency. Then two nights where these brave people have a longer shift, and during which they only have to concern themselves with saving lives. But no, the LFB wants to change that to a new shift pattern. Well not change it, enforce it. “Sign your new contracts or be sacked”. What is this, Nazi Germany or Communist Russia? Contracts are legally binding documents and to alter them requires agreement from both sides, by law. Whatever the need to make cuts, any good manager knows they have to get their workers on board. Taking draconian action like this is crazy. I know I shall be supporting the Firefighters all the way.
The only ray of hope out of way our country is going right now, is that the UK may finally go back to being politically active. It won’t be long before we learn how screwed we all going to be by the up and coming cuts in services and benefits, and I’m pretty sure they are going to make Thatcherism look like a picnic. I am keeping my fingers crossed that the fact that the poorest are being expected to pay for the bills run up by the richest will make people get out and protest. I know I’ll be there on the barricades.
Well my blog has definitely gone all radical this time, that’s for sure.