The Musings Of An Opinionated Sod [Help Me Grow!]

A World Wrapped In Cotton Wool …
November 11, 2009, 6:49 am
Filed under: Comment

We live in a society where the word ‘brave’ has been completely destroyed.

We now praise footballers for going into a tackle.

Praise actors for taking on certain roles.

Praise fashion designers for their new lines.

Praise Governments for taking action over issues they got us into in the first place.

Praise people who leave their jobs without a job to go to.

Praise brands for acknowledging their weaknesses.


That’s not brave, that’s ridiculous.

There is much to be happy and excited about the World we live in, but without doubt, there are many things that we should be deeply embarrassed about.

Thinking about the weekend represents major forward planning, ‘hopes’ translates into what we want … not what our World needs and our culture puts more value on material standards than moral.

Where did it all go wrong?

Today in the UK, it’s Remembrance Day … where the actions of truly brave generations don’t get washed away under a sea of materialism, ego and topical debate … and whilst most would think it is a reminder against the perils of war, I like to think of it as a reminder about the power of unity so while it is all well and good to look at the future as a time for the fresh and the new, I believe real staying power happens when you marry that to the values and learning’s of the past.

Adland should take note because they wouldn’t know brave if it came and smashed them in the face.

16 Comments so far
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you clever bastard, you write a post so any shitty comment from me looks like im a bastard. your evil manipulative streak is getting strong again. youre almost making me believe again so do. not. fuck. it. up.

Comment by andy@cynic

i even fucking agree with you. what the fuck?

Comment by andy@cynic

Weren’t your lot on the baddies side?

Comment by Billy Whizz

Sticks and stones Billy … sticks and stones.

Comment by Rob

Good man.

Comment by Lee Hill

Let’s not forget as people are dying right now in a war they should never have been put into, that governments have a hell of a lot to answer for on this day.

From the Great war to Iraq mkII, these are brave people dying to help us and help the world.

Comment by Rob Mortimer

i’ve lost my perspective on commemorating warfare. i know that i need to do so, in order for history to stop repeating itself. but i feel like each time i buy a poppy, or stop for anzac day, or something else, that i’m condoning it in some way.

and whilst i honour the fact that going into battle – real battle for your country is a pretty brave thing to do. it’s also done by the naive, ignorant and mislead. and i feel odd about supporting that too.

just being honest.


Comment by lauren

We do have a thing here where people wear white poppies, which are supposed to signify rememberance and respect for the dead whilst condemming the violence that gets them killed.

Comment by Rob Mortimer

I know what you’re saying Lauren – and I think I’ve mentioned previously how I feel there are parts of Anzac day’s celebrations [and that is the word] that are very disrespectful to the people it is meant to commemorate – but whether the people were naive, ignorant or misled they still did more good than many of the people who are over-acclaimed today … and so while I never would condone war, I do think we need to remember both the tragedy and the bravery if only to remind people of values like honour, integrity, valour and compassion.

Sure there’s many negatives that could also be detailed, but if we ignore them because we are worried someone might think we’re condoning them – then all it’s doing is erasing memories and if there’s one thing we know about society, it’s bloody hard for us to learn from our – and others – previous mistakes.

Comment by Rob

i agree to a certain extent rob and yet it’s that continued focus on ‘the people who fought and were brave’ that i have the issue with. i believe it creates this very romantic idea about the actions of a group of specific people.

i do prefer armistice day or reunification day to others, because the focus can be on the acknowledgment of damage as a whole and healing the fracture. and provided that these days continue to be about commemorating the event (and their implications), then, yes, we will hopefully learn lessons. as it is, when we talk about the heroes then we quickly forget.

*and we both know that australia is appalling when it comes to a mature approach to both war and celebration, so i’ll gladly accept that i’m probably biased.

Comment by lauren

You’re right Lauren, but it’s not as romanticised as Hollywood’s big budget bullshit or the gaming industry … which I would say has more influence than the 11/11.

So basically we’re agreeing I think. 🙂

Comment by Rob

yeah, we are. 🙂

although i’ve been thinking about this a lot since i wrote it and i have to add a disclaimer: i’m a young white girl from the ‘burbs who makes art, so i don’t really know shit about shit.

Comment by lauren

is it not just a Anglo american Western European thing? Most cultures and people i know (granted not representative for gen pop, or the people on this blog) view rememberence as an anger trigger.

my arab peeps, talk about palestine when the dutch celebrate end of occupation, all the balkan fam talk of anger and pain when neigbouring countries celebrate victories. I know some asian (from china) who still dont accept japan’s role in WWII.

the danger with this type of thing is apathy + fringe emotions. apathy makes it a superficial event for the majority whilst the fringe use it as a rallying cry for their cause.

so yeah, big up them from way back when, but unless it gets a habitual part in ur life (like it has with some of my hebrew partners) it will

a) not prevent future gens from doing the same thing

b) bring past foes or people in general closer together when their baseline cultures are not progressing at the rate than the cultures in the 1st world have.

thus running the risk of undermining the things they fought for.

Comment by nh

one mans poppy of peace is another fuckers drug reference.

cant please every fucker and when you try you end up like fucking colgate.

like most things how you do it is as important as what you do and all things considered the 11/11 day is better handled than a lot of fucking tragedies in history memorials.

now dont make me answer seriously afuckingain.

Comment by andy@cynic

it needs brave people to prevent war. a lot of them. apart from that, i agree. especially on the notion that it is important to reflect on the values and actions from the past. or history repeats itself… and the notion of unity. as they say, we are all in this together…

Comment by peggy

as an aside, there was an installation challenging “our preconceptions concerning heroism” taking place yesterday, a projection on the walls of the guards chapel in london

Comment by peggy

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