Tyranny is the deliberate removal of nuance.
That is a quote from the late film maker Albert Maysles. What it means, is that nuance- meaning the small details that make up a bigger picture- is something we should always take into account. Without it, tyranny ensues. In short, nothing is in black and white.
When it became common-place knowledge that Mahatma Gandhi allowed his sick wife to die by refusing her treatment, the same treatment he accepted when he fell ill- half the world lost their mind and began to hate the inspirational leader of the Indian independence movement. The people who have said ‘Gandhi is a bastard’ were removing nuance from the situation. The same can be said for cheap news sources such as The Daily Mail- who often elect to present news stories in a black and white manor. ‘All immigrants are rapists‘, ‘Muslims eat swans‘, ‘Middle class kids are genetically superior to anyone else‘. These headlines clearly lack nuance. **Side note: only one of these was the subject of a Daily Mail headline.**
As you are probably aware, the Labour Party (one of the UK’s two main political parties) is currently entangled is an anti-semitism scandal- which has stemmed from allegations of anti-semitism within the party, and an awful mural. Although there are no direct anti-semitic quotes from someone within the Labour Party (my attempt to get you to think with nuance), there is clearly a problem within the party which needs to be addressed- and one that I have confidence the leader is keen to eradicate. But we have to see ‘in colour’ here, let’s look at the big picture:
The Labour Party is a political party birthed out of trade unions which seeks to give working people a voice. Their manifesto includes promises such as the promise to get rid of zero hour contracts. There are pockets of anti-semitism which need to be stomped out. Some of the laws passed by Labour Governments include the Human Rights Act, the Climate Change Act, and the 1967 Sexual Offences Act- which decriminalised homosexual acts.
**Side note: it is okay to still oppose the labour party, for political reasons- maybe you would rather our key industries remain privatised, or you want support a party which promises to scrap trident, or maybe you hate poor people. Just please don’t say ‘I hate labour because all labour supporters hate Jews’ (the sort of statement which should be scrawled in crayon across a piece of sugar paper which is then mailed to the Daily Mail HQ for them to use as material (this is how I imagine a lot of mail headlines come into being)).**
It is not hard to think in colour, or with nuance. However, it can seem confusing to people who are not used to it. It can feel crushing to hear your favourite idol has done a terrible thing- but humans are imperfect creatures, and all you have to do is put the terrible things in context. You will know in your heart who is a good and bad person (without having to think in black and white terms) and you should trust this. Otherwise you are very welcome to join an angry Daily Mail Crayon Scrawling Mob…