Tuesday, 16 October 2012
The race card:
Yes, we've all heard the tired old saw that comes out everytime PoC object to racism "You're just playing the race card".
Do I think we have a responsibility to recognise, acknowledge and be aware that racism is a big issue? Absolutely.
At the same time, just because something happens to a non-white person doesn't mean it involves racism. Currently many people are complaining about Gary Mckinnon's reprieve on the ground of mental health reasons because another person Talha Ahsan who also has Asperger's is being extradited.
Autistic doesn't mean alike, yes, some of us cannot deal with the massive upheaval such a thing would cause, then again most autistic people don't allegedly hack the pentagon computers to find proof of little green men or allegedly run groups that support terrorist activity.
Your armchair opinion of "Well if one can't be, then he's the same and can't be" is damaging to efforts to get us treated as individuals. If Talha Ahsan would be endangered by extradition? That's a call for experts to make.
Just because Talha Ahsan is Muslim doesn't mean his case is exactly like Gary Mckinnon's only with non-white skin. It is entirely possible for two cases to have two outcomes because of many and varied reasons. One of those may be racism, we should question it, but trying to erase differences is not questioning.
The two cases are entirely different apart from a few things like autism, both male, both wanted by the US. They should be judged on their own merits, not stuck together with the bad glue of assumptions and their differences ignored.
Am I glad Gary isn't going to be extradited? Absolutely. Do I think if Talha Ahsan is likely to face the same issues, his extradition should be reconsidered? Absolutely. I still however find much of the behaviour going on to be irresponsible and harmful to autistic people as a whole.