Thursday, December 17, 2009

Peter Tatchell

Peter Tatchell is, to me, a modern day Lord Longford in that even though his politics are somewhat alarmingly wrong headed he is never the less a man of personal integrity and courage.

In the field for which he is most famous- gay rights- he doesn't make the two mistakes that a lot of his contemporaries make:
Which means that is a great shame that he has had to stand down as a candidate for the general election due to the injuries he has suffered in the course of his campaigning, particularly the beatings he took at the hands of Robert Mugabe's bodyguards and at the hands of Moscow thugs.

Admitting that he has suffered brain injuries is also very brave, there is a certain stigma to that kind of thing which makes it difficult to address openly. There is a perception that when somebody suffers an injury it is just a case of waiting for bruises to fade, bones to heal and then everything is back to normal. That isn't always the case particularly with head injuries, often the effects of a beating last a lifetime or at least several years. Which is something to remember when reading of an assault case in the newspaper- even non fatal attacks can often leave victims permanently affected. There have recently been a number of news stories about the long term effects of head trauma on certain kind of athletes, but any form of repeated blows to the head will have the same effect.


James Higham said...

Blows to the head mess with the control centre.

Mark said...

Thanks Ross for the Lord Longford comparison, it's pretty apt.

Tatchell's politics are incredibly wrong headed but he has, as you say integrity & courage.For instance, I believe he still lives in the same flat near the Elephant that he had when he stood in the Bermondsey by-election- which puts him in a completely different class to the troughers of all stripes who've been elected to the House at regular intervals since 1982!