Being Cynical of The Freedom of Speech Campaign

 

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There’s a campaign that we often hear about in this modern world of the fight for freedom of speech. And to be quite honest as the title of this post suggests I’m cynical of it.

 

That isn’t to say I don’t believe in it. Because I strongly do. But I can’t help thinking that it’s a ploy to return the world to a place of prejudice at every corner towards people in minority groups. When exactly have any of the people campaigning for freedom of speech ever said for example, “If you believe people of the same race getting together is wrong you should have the right to say it” or “If you believe cis people are not their gender you should have the right to say it”. They seem to be campaigning from my perspective for negative things to be said about people in minority groups and in minority situations and never about majority groups and in majority situations. This is why I find it often very difficult to support the campaign because at heart, I don’t believe it is freedom of speech they are fighting for.

 

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I’m a kind of a person who believes that everyone in both minority and majority groups is valid but if somebody believed either way that that wasn’t the case I would completely fight for their freedom to say that. But that doesn’t mean I wouldn’t challenge them on those views. It doesn’t mean I have to like them for those views. I’m noticing a slight trend lately towards the “keep your mouth shut and be polite” even if someone is speaking about having prejudiced views or you know that they do. It can be very suffocating if you’re a person like me who is passionate about their views. Often you are on your own in being ok with bringing up the issue. There may be one or two people like you but often there isn’t. Why? Because a lot of people like to stay neutral in social situations. They see it as conflict and trouble.

 

A lot of us live in a democracy. If two people with opposing views can’t sit down and have a calm debate on issues they feel passionate about, then where does that leave humankind? What often results from a situation that could have been two people getting their point across and then having a cup of tea together after becomes carnage. If you dare even utter the sentence “I think you’re prejudiced” it turns into a mess of “you shouldn’t have said that”, “ah, they don’t mean it in a prejudiced way”, “you can’t call people that”. And maybe it’s just me but isn’t that an attempt to take away my freedom of speech? I don’t actually let out my views very often in social situations for that reason. I’ve seen a lot of people who have honest views even in a calm way be isolated for daring to speak their truth including by people in groups that they are actually standing up for which is incredibly ironic.

 

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There is also this idea that you are trying to change people when you disagree with their view. First of all, I have enough respect for the person I would be debating with to not think they would be weak-headed enough to change their views because of me. The people that say that clearly think they must be. Secondly I don’t exactly think I have that much influence over people! And lastly if I was out to change someone’s views I would go about it a lot more diplomatically than just being honest about what I think. People are more inclined after all to change views with a soft-softy approach than an honest approach. All I want in a situation like that is to put my own point across but it seems to be very hard for people to believe that’s all a person wants to do. Discourse is great. And uncensored discourse is brilliant. As long as both parties are calm, I don’t believe it’s right to tell people how they should speak in any discourse situation.

 

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But I’m cynical of the motives of those involved in campaigning for freedom of speech. If it was genuinely a movement for freedom of speech, all types of freedom of speech would be included not just the middle ground like my views which are positive about both minority and majority groups and the views of people who feel negative about minority groups but also those who feel negative about majority groups and those who feel negative about both. When they don’t say that I don’t believe them and I don’t believe their motives. If their tactics were different and they were sincere with those tactics my feelings would be completely different. The question for me is not between freedom of speech and the feelings of people in minority groups when faced with prejudices about who they are as is often the debate put across. For me, it’s more about not singling out minority groups to be spoken of freely in a negative way by people in majority groups but rather allowing both minority and majority groups to speak freely in a negative way about each other and campaigning for both minority and majority groups’ right to do so. Are majority groups that special that they can’t be spoken about negatively like everyone else?

 

 

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Question of the Day 9-28-2018

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If you could switch lives with anybody, who would you choose?

 

I would swap lives with either my Mum or my Sister because I love, admire and respect them both to bits. I think it’d be interesting to see how they see various different things that we all experience together. And I know either way I’d be swapping lives with a good person so they’d live my life well and I’d live their life well either way. Win-win! 🙂

 

For Question of the Day:

https://athling2001.wordpress.com/2018/09/28/question-of-the-day-9-28-2018/

Friday Fictioneers: Promoting

 

 

 

 

Promoting

 

“Tea or coffee?”, Greg asked the publisher who he was trying to network with.

“Coffee please.”, the publisher replied.

Greg makes coffee.

“I’ve got this book about this bloke, a writer. He falls in love on a writer’s retreat … there’s a subplot about his friend who is a doctor …”

“What is the woman he falls for like? The doctor, what’s he like?”

Greg smiled, said he’d talk about it sometime, went to find a publisher who might be right for the project. His main character fell for a bloke. His doctor friend was a woman. This wasn’t a good fit.

 

My book Black Coat based on a previous Friday Fictioneers prompt is available at:

 

For Friday Fictioneers Writing Prompt. Check out the website at:

https://rochellewisoff.com/

My New Book Rory Murphy Mysteries: Final Act Is Now Available On Amazon!

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Hello everyone! 🙂

 

I have just released my 16th book Rory Murphy Mysteries: Final Act on Amazon. It is the third book in my Rory Murphy Mysteries series. In this book, Rory, his boyfriend Joseph and their friends and fellow couple Steven and Simon embark on the mysterious murder of theatre actress Mary-Anne Shepherd and soon find that her murder is connected to two other murders. But who is the killer/s?

 

In a world filled with disguise the four men must uncover the layers and find out what exactly lies at the heart of all this death in theatre land …

 

I love writing this series and with each book comes new characters who can play supporting roles to our main man Rory and his crew of four amateur detectives. I found the whole element of using disguises very interesting to work with in this book and I thought it fitted well with the theatre and acting. And it was nice to dip into Simon’s world!

 

If you would like to purchase Rory Murphy Mysteries: Final Act go to:

 

For books 1 and 2 in the series go to:

 

To purchase only the first book in the series Rory Murphy Mysteries: The Church Murders go to:

 

To purchase only Rory Murphy Mysteries: Trip To Birmingham go to:

Valentine’s Love By Helena Stone Review!

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Valentine’s Love (2018) by Helena Stone is a beautifully crafted, heartwarming love story.

 

The story follows protagonist Ty O’ Malley who owns a gift shop called Spoilt for Choice and enjoys nothing better than helping his customers find the gifts they need to show their appreciation of those they love. Often these situations are with their significant others and while Ty is helping them, he is putting to one side his own emotional affairs in matters of the heart with the same sex and the pain and hurt he feels about the breakdown of his relationship with a man who he loved who left him three years prior. I couldn’t help thinking of Jane Austen when I was reading parts in this book because like Ty, a lot of her work was about romance and yet she struggled to find it in her own life. But alas, Ty is thankfully not going the same path as dear Jane as hope is on the horizon in the form of a customer who comes into his shop called Ben Cronin. With the help of Ty’s cupid-like assistant, there is now a chance for finding his own love of his life to buy gifts and shower in love and affection. But there is of course a snag like in all good ‘will-they-won’t-they?’ romance as Ben has come into the shop looking for gift ideas for another mystery man who has his heart all aflutter …

 

I think the chemistry between Ty and Ben is very natural and drives the plot forward with ease. You definitely find yourself rooting for them to get together and for Ty to finally move on from his arsehole ex-boyfriend. The emotions and fears that both men feel about making this big leap and adjustment to their lives is written very well especially Ty’s feelings on the issue as he has far more baggage coming into this possible new relationship. He is learning to trust again and finding it difficult to allow his heart to be put in another man’s hands again.

 

I also love in this book how the author fitted in a bit of social commentary and how it is often assumed that someone is romantically linked to someone of the opposite sex and is buying gifts for them. Though there is a bit more to that part of the story which I don’t want to give away, it was a point well made and something which needs to be brought up in fiction, and in general, more.

 

Another thing I loved about this book is that as an Irish person, it felt very authentic of Ireland to me. The characters in this book are like Irish people I meet all the time and that isn’t always the case with the representations of Irish characters in fiction. I mean the amount of times I have lost my shit over representations of Irish people involving leprechauns, a belief in mythical creatures and an all-round naive outlook of the world has been a hell of a lot. So I very much appreciated that the author did not use the stereotypical approach to the story. These characters are strong, everyday Irish people with human emotions and modern outlooks and that is the real Ireland that I live in every day. Also loved that Monkstown was the setting because my late and very much loved father was from Monkstown.

 

Ty and Ben are such a lovely couple to read about and this story is one of those lovely romances that you can sit reading with a cup of coffee and marshmallows and feel all warm and happy inside.

 

A fantastic read. Very beautiful. And a read for all year round, not just for Valentine’s!

 

To purchase Valentine’s Love by Helena Stone go to:

 

And for more about Helena Stone and her work go to:

https://www.amazon.com/Helena-Stone/e/B00U4Z7SF6/ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_2?qid=1537493193&sr=1-2

Loving A Straight Boy By Joseph Lance Tonlet Review!

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Loving A Straight Boy (2018) by Joseph Lance Tonlet is a short story about unrequited love.

 

This is a great book which deals with the subject of unrequited love and the psychological dynamics that are often at play in such situations. The protagonist and the straight man he’s in love with are both very flawed characters in the situation and both their personalities make an incredibly difficult situation even harder for them both. Countless times I have been in the position of the main character feeling love for a person it isn’t going to happen with and I understood the pain, the emptiness and the longing that the author has written very well in the piece. But the way he is handling it is all wrong. His approach is very forceful and he is not accepting that this man has a right to feel how he feels too. But the other man’s approach is just as bad. He loves the power he has over the main character and the way he relishes in the power he has over him is sickening. He is leading him on in short even though he says nothing will happen. His actions are very different from his words with a lad he knows worships the ground he walks on. He may not ever want to be with him but he wants to always have complete control over him.

 

Ultimately it is quite a sad tale filled with needs for love, possession and lack of understanding and communication. This piece is very thought-provoking and is sadly often what does happen when you put your own needs always before the needs of others. Both characters are quite selfish for the vision of their own future that they see. It is a story of a very intense and toxic friendship for both of the characters’ wellbeings and you find yourself wishing they would get away from each other, have some space and maybe the situation would become more healthy. Maybe they could even still be friends but be able to find happiness in their respective love lives and not be so wrapped up in each other. Because they both are for very different reasons.

 

A really great read with great insight into the emotional dynamics of not been able to pull away or to even try to.

 

To get your free copy of Loving A Straight Boy by Joseph Lance Tonlet go to:

https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/894616

 

And for more about Joseph Lance Tonlet and his work go to:

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/8344230.Joseph_Lance_Tonlet

Do You Worry What Others Will Say on Your Choice in Writing? Namely, genres? – Guest Post by, Traci Kenworth…

Wise words here! Do check out this wonderful piece by Traci Kenworth:

Chris The Story Reading Ape's Blog

Have you as a writer heard grumbles on your material choices? For instance, if you write horror or romance? Perhaps family members or friends point out that they object to your story or the direction you want to take your career. Does it influence you? Has it made you steer clear of writing such stories? Do you keep what you write secret from church members for fear of being shamed for it? For most of my life, I’ve done this at one time or another. When I was young, eighteen, I made the mistake of admitting that I wrote horror to my pastor’s wife. She was horrified and suggested that I cease writing such stories immediately. It took me many years before I admitted the same to family and friends and here and there, I heard murmurs about writing “that stuff.”

The same kind of reactions come from writing romance…

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