Thursday, August 23, 2018

Many a true word is spoken in jest: Tracey Ullman's "Alternative opinions" sketch

Although I find this sketch from Tracey Ullman funny - indeed, when I first watched it I laughed so loudly that my son and daughter came running to see what was going on - that isn't the main reason why I've posted it here.

I've put this up because I think that the theme of the joke - that many people do have difficulty with the fact that others don't see the world the same way, and worse, with the idea that those individuals are not necessarily evil, stupid or even wrong - reflects a real issue. One which is having a damaging effect on politics here in Britain and around the world.

It may well be that imagining that people who think differently are at best wrong, and at worst evil, has historically been the default position for homo sapiens, but I used to think I had grown up in a country which prided itself on tolerance of different opinions. Over the last three or four years that confidence has taken some bad knocks.

This clip has been shared on social media by people who think it takes the mickey out of those with a particular view about Brexit. It can be seen that way, but I think the truth behind the joke is broader.

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