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Tuesday, 10 December 2019

Don't patronize me

British media and politicians were successful in alienating British voters from the European Union by presenting (fake and true) stories about European patronizing (eg, European banana law). Recently, two Dutch legal scholars claimed that cats must be held at a leash when outdoors, following EU legislation (source). The Dutch Nature minister confirmed their analysis.

My mother (85) also has a habit of patronizing me. I have learned to keep my mouth shut about certain issues. Else, I will get her unsolicited advice. In 1972, she advised me to wear shorts at my first day at secondary school because of the warm weather. I flatly refused because I didn't want to become an outcast in a new group. Others were less lucky.

I doubt there is a fine line between "meaning well" and patronizing. Probably, most birds died due to flying against the many glass windows in my (previous) house. Cats were never quick enough to catch a bird. It seems also weird reintroducing predators, like a wolf, and sanctioning cats for being a cat. A little bell around their neck seems more than adequate.

I suppose the infuriating part of (arrogant) patronizing is that it makes you feel like an ignorant child - again. As an adult, you are accountable and responsible for your actions. You also have a legal authority to act. Patronizing jeopardizes our accountability, responsibility and authority. Unfortunately, neither anger nor ridicule will solve patronizing.

Interestingly, the 27 EU members now face patronizing by the EU following the 2021-2027 EU multiannual framework a.k.a. budget. The EU is unwilling lowering its total spending after the UK's departure. The remaining 27 must make up for the loss of the UK contribution to the EU. This is infuriating several of the 27 members. Also see my 18 November 2019 blog.

The conservative right is often angered by patronizing proposals of the liberal left. Hence, my 2017 blogs on the arrogance of Left and ignorance of Right and the ignorance of Nationalism and arrogance of Globalism. Polarisation is the consequence of long and intense patronizing. Coalition governments slows down bipartisan polarisation but cannot prevent it.

The contemporary word "mansplaining" is nothing more - or less - than arrogant male patronizing of "ignorant" women. Wiki: "a pejorative term meaning "(of a man) to comment on or explain something to a woman in a condescending, overconfident, and often inaccurate or oversimplified manner". Mansplaining is the most irritating issue to women (PT-2017).

“Misery and poverty are so absolutely degrading, and exercise such a paralysing effect over the nature of men, that no class is ever really conscious of its own suffering. They have to be told of it by other people, and they often entirely disbelieve them.” A quote by Oscar Wilde (1854-1900) from his 1891 essay The Soul of Man Under Socialism.

I Can't Make You Love Me (1991) by Bonnie Raitt

Turn down the lights
Turn down the bed
Turn down these voices inside my head
Lay down with me
Tell me no lies
Just hold me close
Don't patronize
Don't patronize me

Note: all markings (bolditalicunderlining) by LO unless stated otherwise

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