Missing the forest for the tree(deliberately)

Poor Israel! Poor Israel! Again it has been horrifically slandered, this time by a horrible anti-Semitic Jew named Bernie Sanders who accused Israel of murdering 10,000 Palestinians in its latest invasion and massacre of Gaza in 2014. Oh it has me verklempt! 10,000! It was only around 1,500, including 551 children! Slander! Blood libel!(really, yes, really)

Sanders was not that far off – while he was mistaken on how many Israel butchered – there were over 10,000 injured, many severely and between 2000 and today, Israel has murdered more than 10,000 Palestinians. In fact, his mistake just highlights how many war crimes and atrocities Israel has committed against the Palestinian people – so many that it is hard for people to keep up.

This is a deliberate deflection tactic and we need to start calling it out for what it is. Deliberate hyper-focus is a tactic by those without an argument to stand on to make a big deal out of a small insignificant detail, or to argue about the meaning of a word.

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One very good reason to be afraid of gay people is because these fab five would totally school you in a dance-off and then you’d look like a tool.

In the 1990s and early 2000s(and even today), we argued whether homophobia was really a fear of gays, or whether we needed to use a different word. How the Big Gay Lobby uses homophobia to silence critics of Big Gay. Oh and maybe we should call it homorealism because there are reasons to be afraid of gays, good reasons. 

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#DinnerJihad destroying Western civilisation with delicious, delicious food. 

Today we argue whether Islamophobia is really a fear of Islam or whether we should use a different word. How the Big Muslim Lobby uses Islamophobia to silence critics of Big Muslim. Oh and maybe we should call it Islamorealism because there are reasons to be afraid of Muslims, good reasons.

Now, there are some genuine activists and grammarians who have issues with word accuracy, an in legal cases such nitpicking is sometimes essential, but often this argument comes from bigots – bigots who know that we have a problem with bigotry against certain communities so in order to not look like total jerks, they pretend like they care about accuracy……(and #gamergate really is about ethics in journalism)

So while we rage over Sanders not knowing the exact number of civilians that Israel butchered two years ago in Gaza, over whether people are using the right words to describe bigotry – Israel continues to butcher Palestinians, bigotry against minority communities continues, and flourishes. When we get in such debates sometimes we need to stop, take a step back and see what really matters. Stop obsessing over a tree and see the forest because we need to talk about this.

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