This is on Saturday 11th July 2015. 9.30am to 5pm.
This is an anti-hate crime, anti-bullying event.
It will be a mixture of serious talks/workshops, music, acting and art.
There will be significant presenters and inventive entertaining plays.
Sylvia Lancaster OBE will give a presentation.
Bernard Reed OBE and Terri Reed OBE will also give a talk
I will give an introductory talk and will host this event.
The police will be there as well.
It will be both educational and entertaining.
On twitter you can use #CommunityCohesion
Below are several photographs taken by a professional photographer working for the Greater Manchester Police. These pictures were taken at the Headquarters.
The GMP will be promoting anti-hate crime using these photos.
If you wish to assist in some way please contact me or the GMP.
My investigations of transgender people have highlighted poor and contradictory past research and understandings of transgenderism. The Equality and Human Rights Commission have also recognized this issue.
This deficiency hampers business, academic, media, legal and Government understandings of trans* areas. Transgenderism (incompletely) features in the Equality Act (2010) but there is also little understanding that a greater knowledge of trans* issues will expand flexibility and business proficiency in numerous other categories.
This is a link to a BBC Documentary on Young Transgender Referrals:
I'm in my 40s and I refuse to grow old. My parents are in their 80s. I had a great aunt who took up creative writing at 92. She died last year at 96.
Recently I did in-door mountain climbing and wanted to do it again. So much fun!
Yes, I had an out-door mountaineering accident recently but think this:
When I read the newspaper and online reports and I look at TV programmes I look at the ages of people.
There are older people who are TV news presenters, older judges on TV talent shows, celebrities getting married and adopting children in their 50s, older experts on medical and social issues so...
Why do we still have ageism?
Another situation are the increasing rights and respects for women. In the UK, medical technology, the uncertainty in the work market and the instability of present relationships have also had age effects in birth. Referring to the Office for National Statistics (ONS), Helen Briggs from the BBC writes:
We also know that people are living longer. According to the ONS, life expectancy for children born in 2013 is
One in three babies born today will celebrate their 100th birthday...
We know retirement ages are rising and will continue to rise as people live longer.
Sci-fi series which are often the predictor for future events. In Star Trek DS9 a women in her late 20s/early 30s mentions that her mum just celebrated her 100th birthday... Not so unrealistic...
So why are people still ageist? I don't have issues with age. In fact I know of age differences in several friends' relationships are irrelevant. One couple I know has an age difference of 20 years. They've been together for about 35 years... A close friend of mine had just started a relationship and they're both in their 50s.
But many employers are slow to take account of societies' Diversity. Even though it makes business sense to be diverse and therefore be more flexible. Many companies are still unaware of their legal vulnerabilities like in the UK Equality Act 2010 or the UK Public Services Act 2013.
Too many people are also still having old-fashioned prejudices shown in areas I'm involved with regarding Hate Crimes.
Age? Here's a saying: "The person who doesn't remember the mistakes of the past is doomed to repeat them."
Something we should remember.
My central work at present is about educating and supporting people about opposing hate crimes. I also enhancing environmental awareness and educating people around that. My anti-hate crime tour in Greater Manchester is promoting those issues, using my art piece ERi as the visual and iconic anti-hate crime and Diversity message.
Plenty of opportunities for businesses to promote themselves as well.
But I thought about how open we all actually are.
I know that overt hate crimes are mostly racist and that non-white people are 13 times more likely to be the objects of racial hate than white people. (Data from 'An Overview of Hate Crime
in England and Wales' published by the UK Home Office in December 2013.)
Now 'sexuality' is another big area regarding victims of hate crimes. In October 2013 the Stonewall organization wrote that one in six lesbian, gay and bisexual people have experienced a hate crime or incident. I have one lesbian friend who was recently raped. (Fortunately, she recently won her legal case against her rapist.)
About LGBT* issues, last year I was interviewed by the Gaydio radio station about Trans* people - see my blog entry:
And you know what? I was thinking how are people going to think and assume? I knew that some people would think, "Oh, he's obviously gay" just because I was on a gay radio station - I don't care (although my girlfriend would) - but that's just another erroneous assumption/bias people often make. How many of us actually make those erroneous assumptions? Well, I'll hold my hand up and admit that I sometimes do - but that's the point. Unconscious bias loses power if you're aware of it.
Then there's my talking about transgenderism. Yeah I do talk about cross-dressing in that interview but if we think about it - what's really wrong about cross-dressing? I never got turned on by cross-dressing. But even if I guy does get turned-on by cross-dressing what's wrong with that? You mean that some women who like to wear corsets and/or stockings don't get turned on by wearing them?
Again we're talking bias.
This connects with other prejudices. I know some people could get angry with me and say,
- "How can you be on a gay themed radio station and not be gay?"
- "You're not a proper transgender person because you're not permanently transitioning gender."
Basically, many of the biases we have are based upon irrational historical prejudices (over 1000s of years) and they derive from insecurity. Sexism/homophobia/transphobia (and others) all come from similar gender insecurities (I could detail a lot more about this but it would make this blog 3 or 4 times the length - much of my PhD is about this).
So do many people like to talk about their enthusiasm for Diversity but are actually still powerfully affected by unconscious biases?
There is an increasing amount of legal, academic and media coverage about transgender people. In the UK the organizations Stonewall and LGF are now promoting themselves as being transgender supportive as well. Published 28th July, Alexandra Topping of The Guardian interviewed Ruth Hunt, the new chief executive of gay rights group Stonewall. The group
But there is still a long way to go.
On 22nd May Paris Lees made an article entitled, "It's Time We Exposed the Media's Lies About Transgender Kids". She wrote:
Jayne Hanson writes in a Huffington Post entry about Cher's transgender son:
Trans* identities can include those who are BIGENDERED. My PhD covers that as well as countering several of the legal, medical, academic and media mistakes that the Equality and Human Rights Commission recognises. Some those that EHRC acknowledges, which I write to counter, include:
- Comprehending present-day transvestism.
- Inconsistent definitions of ‘transgenderism’ and the connected terms.
- Understanding online transgender communities.
- Information regarding
But of course EHRC have had their funding dramatically cut back so those mistakes carry on... and books written in the 60s and 70s carry on being assumed to be the correct ways of looking at the ranges of transgender identities.
This is partly why I was interviewed by the Gaydio radio station as part of highlighting some of those errors. (A big 'thank you' to the Gaydio people.) Well it'll be a taster until the book I'm editing, that's from my PhD work, gets published. Click on the picture for the link to my interview:
Once again I was planing to write more about past experiences but present international situations are very dominant.
Once again troubles in Western Asia, including Iraq issues, have significantly come to the fore.
Iraq and the areas in it have apparently long been important to humanity. The rivers, the Tigris and Euphrates, run through the middle of Iraq. Between these rivers is an area referred to as Mesopotamia. Here it is claimed is the birth of modern civilization.
The militant group Islamic State have gained a lot of recent controversial publicity. The BBC News website states on the 11th August:
The beheading of Steven Sotloff, a US journalist, by the Islamic State was apparently in retribution for the US air strikes. It was stated on a BBC website that:
But what effects does this unsettled and distressing time in the Middle East have in the UK? We've already seen that the Israeli/Palestinian conflicts have led to debatable incidents/protests in this country.
Well, Ava Vidal published several thoughts about Islamophobia in the Telegraph. In an article entitled "'People grab our veils, call us terrorists and want us dead'" she writes:
It could be convincingly argued that wearing a veil is not an essential part of being a Muslim. This area is a very difficult position for me to be in. I am feminist (yes, men can be feminists - have a look in a dictionary - feminists are not only women) so I am deeply uncomfortable with the suppression of women. Alongside that, as I have hearing difficulties, I regard someone wearing a veil as discriminating against deaf and hearing impaired people who need to lip-read... so I see veils as both expressions of sexism and disablism.
BUT I do not discriminate against any religion nor do I appreciate anyone else discriminating against religious beliefs.
Now I've heard the... 'debatable' statement that "Islamic people breed so much in this country that white people will get out numbered".
Let's look at this rationally shall we?
I have created a table of the ethnic composition of the United Kingdom according to the 2011 Census:
White people are not likely to get out numbered any time soon. In fact, mixed race people are the fastest growing racial identity in the UK.
How about we look at religious variations in the UK too?
So Christianity is by far the biggest UK religion with no religious beliefs being the second largest. So the racist and religious bigots don't have any rational facts to back their opinions on... but then they wouldn't need rational figures to reinforce their views...
I certainly think that the sometimes violent and destructive campaigns in the UK don't really help matters. They enhance the irrational prejudices and distrust instead of trying to be examples of tolerance - but maybe many human beings can't be like that.
Perhaps human beings much prefer - and are more comfortable with - "our group is better than your group" - we can cope with feeling we belong to some group (aka "tribe").
Maybe conflicts can't ever be resolved as long as we think like humans...