Animal Farm philosophy

The beginning of the end for the equality rights movement



Throughout the history of the equality rights movement it was difficult to integrate different views/needs of different characteristics. To integrate women views/needs, gay/lesbian/bisexual views/needs, view's/needs of visible minorities and the views/needs of disabled people (to just name a few) within the equality rights movement is hard work and is often riddled with conflict of interests. Even within one group e.g. the disability movement fights erupt frequently related to issues. For example the wheelchair user and the blind person have different needs regarding curb cuts and it is often not easy to come to an agreement. These conflict of interest related to issues also exist between groups and within other groups. But this dynamic is carried now to a new dimension with the arrival of the genetic revolution which promises the elimination of negative judged characteristics through cure (euthanics) or elimination (eugenics). Because the judgment of ones value is at the core of ones self esteem, pride and human/equality rights the characteristics are starting to jockey for positions from which they can say through emotional or argumentative frameworks that their characteristic should be excluded from the cure/termination part of the genetic revolution. None of the groups seems to feel strong enough to question the underlying assumptions guiding the process of predictive testing with following cure/termination namely that negative prejudiced characteristics can only be dealt with within a medical model with medical solutions (termination/cure) or that they can stop the process by building a broad coalition which would oppose the medicalization process on this issue. To the contrary it appears that different groups feel that they can only hope to delist their group their characteristic from this medicalization process by developing arguments they would co opt only for themselves and would negate other groups the use of the same argument (Animal Farm Philosophy). Now these groups seems to be in a direct conflict of interest. A conflict of interests which makes a it nearly impossible to form a broad alliance on other human/equality rights issues. Whenever the issue of predictive testing and the option of cure/termination arises in public, people are left with the impression that indeed we can draw the line somewhere. Unfortunately no in depth analysis is available so far as to where to draw the line. And definitively no model exist how to develop a legalistic framework on the issue of where to draw the line. If arguments are available than they seem to draw the line at sex selection No- disability selection Yes or at sex/sexual orientation selection No - disability selection yes. But the arguments used for these lines are untenable to say the least as I hope to illustrate in this paper. They are in essence based on an emotional concept of self preservation, superiority thinking in regards to other characteristics, an Animal Farm Philosophy, and plain prejudice against other characteristics. We need a society and a human/equality rights movement which recognizes that there is place for every characteristic and that we the members of any given society should support each others. That is the only protection in the long run against genism (as in racism, sexism and able-ism) which might affect 60% of society according to a New Zealand study. It rarely works to not fight the underlying evil but to detarget themselves from the evil. Because others not you will decide whether you are the target.

"In Germany they came first for the Communists, and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a Communist.

Then they came for the Jews, and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a Jew.

Then they came for the trade unionists, and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a trade unionist.

Then they came for the Catholics, and I didn't speak up because I was a Protestant.

Then they came for me, and by that time no one was left to speak up. "

-Martin Niemoeller (1892-1984)