The game, for all the family, of “change the minority” has for a long time been seen as a bankrupt argument. I think this is because it makes those who prejudge uncomfortable due to it being unanswerable.
But I believe it still works and is still valid along a whole line of prejudice. After all, just because someone isn’t prejudice against, say, British Asians and Jewish people but is prejudice against LGBT people doesn’t mean they’re not prejudiced.
Let’s rotate the panellists, clear the scoreboard and play “Change The Minority!”
- Same-sex marriage would destroy the institution of marriage
- Jewish people marrying would destroy the institution of marriage
Five points! Marriage is about love, not about your opinions. If you don’t like gay marriage, don’t marry a gay.
- People claim to be disabled to get benefits
- People claim to be Christians to get benefits
Four points! There are a lot of benefits to be had for claiming to be part of an oppressed minority, especially if you’re not. But we’ve docked a point because the price of actually having a disability is greater than the money on offer from the government, as anyone with mobility problems will tell you if you mention kerbs, trains or shop doorways.
- Gay people shouldn’t adopt
- Black people shouldn’t adopt
Another five points! Children without parents need parents.
- Muslims oppress women
- Christians oppress women
Only two points for that one – at the last count, every section of society oppresses women, including other women (have you read what women write in the Daily Mail about other women? No? Well, don’t).
- Gay people are promiscuous
- Christians are promiscuous
Ten points for that one! Some gay people are indeed promiscuous. And some Christians are promiscuous too. Indeed, it’s a human trait, whether you think it’s right or wrong.
- Gay people are too loud about their way of life
- Tory voters are too loud about their way of life
- Labour voters are too loud about their way of life
Five points! And a bonus point for being politically neutral on polling day! People with strident beliefs will be strident about their beliefs. The more you ask them to shut up, the louder they will get.
- There’s a link between homosexuality and paedophilia
- There’s a link between being a Catholic priest and paedophilia
- There’s a link between being from Cleveland and paedophila
Five more points! This is not an issue that will be resolved by pointing fingers at any one section of a society.
- Women shouldn’t make decisions about their reproductive health on their own
- Car drivers shouldn’t make decisions about their reproductive health on their own
Five points, plus two bonus points for noticing that women and car drivers are both slightly in the majority!
I can keep playing this game for as long as you want with literally every view you might have about a subsection of the human race that’s not based on rounded experience. And yes, that does mean it can be done with murderers, rapists and pederasts. And it still remains valid.
That’s because prejudice is built into human beings, a racial trait that all 7 billion of us have. But so is tolerance, understanding, open-mindedness and love. That’s the message of all of the world’s religions, and also the message of humanists and atheists.
My message is a bit simpler: the next time you open your mouth, engage your fucking brain first. Okay?