Lena Davis of the Caring Sharing Trust in Cogenhoe reflects on how we punish those we put on a pedestal…
Do you yearn for someone to admire? Someone who is wise and warm and caring? Someone to lead the Country, combining their care for us with an unblemished private life and blooming good health. Where do we find such a person?
In the past the great figures such as Churchill did not have to contend with an intrusive Press and an oh-so-often malicious internet. It is fairly recently that we have been informed of good old Winnie’s “Black Dog” of depression, alcoholism, etc.
Our intelligence tells us not one of us is perfect but still we seek perfection in others. True – we glory in imperfections in pop stars, entertainers and celebrities. But then we love to know they are “normal”. It is totally different when Politicians are involved. Yet – how strange is that? Common sense tells us that to climb up the political greasy pole you have play the political games.
When someone, like President Trump, comes along we are outraged when he seems not to know the rules or play the games. Yet millions voted for him because of this. Now it seems it is okay to play the maverick to get elected – but unacceptable to be just what you promised when elected.
Theresa May was Home Secretary for many years and, to the best of my knowledge, never once pretended to be warm and cuddly. Agree with her beliefs or not, she has never pretended to be someone else. She will never have crowds chanting “Theresa, Theresa” as some have chanted “Jeremy, Jeremy”. It seems only yesterday, during the London Olympics, the crowd were chanting “Boris, Boris”. Ah, how short is the love of a crowd!
For those too young to remember, I would point out that the previously beloved Mussolini in Italy finished his life being dragged to his death through the streets by those whose love had turned so quickly to hate. On writing this I tried very hard to find someone amongst my multitude of friends and acquaintances who have ever attended a chanting rally. It seems odd that people who are loved right across the board never get this chanting treatment.
I’ve shared many moments connected with freedom of expression in Tibet with Joanna Lumley – but not once have I heard the chants of “Joanna, Joanna”.
Only now has the answer become clear to me. The chants of “Jeremy, Jeremy” are not chants of love for dear old Jeremy but chants of hate for the status quo. People simply picked someone who personifies change and made that person into a deity. Who knows whether Jeremy Corbyn would become a good leader?
That is not the quandary. Being a truly intelligent man, he is probably well aware that he is currently personifying the opposite to the current status quo. The big question is what has the current status quo done that is so, so terrible? Probably the answer lies in a similar scenario which has happened to most of us. That was when our beloved, all caring, all powerful and loving parents suddenly became everything you despised!
You were probably in your early teens when they transformed in your mind into someone who bossed you around, didn’t give you enough pocket money, stopped your freedom to indulge in questionable friends, drink and drugs and, most of all, questioned your idleness. Overnight you realised that they know absolutely nothing and you despised them because you and your friends know absolutely everything!
And, so it is, that many of the young today simply cannot understand why everyone should not pay for them to spend some years enjoying university life whilst finding odd moments to learn such important job attributes as a degree in philosophy, followed by swanning around sunnier world climes. They feel, with all their hearts, that this lifestyle should definitely be paid for by pensioners, people with disabilities, the majority of young people who go directly into employment and, of course, their despised parents. And, finishing in a completely separate matter, it occurs to me that our ongoing love for Princess Diana is simply because the great majority saw what the Royal Family could be. But isn’t.
And, to this day, they aren’t even aware they should be. So, give me the opportunity and I’m prepared to join in the chants “Diana, Diana, Diana!!”