A Raw Nerve…


Well. Here I am. Up, showered, dressed. Early enough to have gone to work, but, happily (?), in too much pain to have driven there. So, as is my custom, I turned the radio on. Listened to the 9.00am news. Which reported the release of the most recent figures of people off work on sick leave.

I was somewhat disturbed by the tenor of the piece – which seemed to suggest that the majority of these people were/are ne’er-do-wells, milking the system, and certainly probably well enough to work.

Now – my tetchiness about this may have something to do with my present incapacity. It may, indeed, be because I did not hear the complete report (I turned the radio on in the middle of this article). Nevertheless I felt it was yet another attempt by a punitive government to justify future cuts in benefits. As we know, people on DLA have been having their entitlements challenged, and their levels of support reduced, over the past few months. This seemed like a preparation for a further onslaught against an easy target.

Although as you will guess, my injury is (hopefully) resolvable and certainly not likely to be long-term, I felt distinctly uneasy about a report which implied that I was some sort of malingerer just because I have had to (on doctor’s orders) absent myself from the workplace for a short period.

Am I too touchy? Has this report hit a raw nerve? Would I stay home from work at the drop of a hat? Well – yes to all of these questions. The point is – people who are off ill are generally just that.

Ill.

Not well.

Sick.

In pain.

Disabled.

Their condition has been confirmed by a medical practitioner who has agreed that their health does not permit them to work at this point.

There have been many things in the news recently which I could have commented upon. Things which make one question the morality of our society and our government. Things which make one question the wisdom of those we entrust to manage our local/national/international affairs. Things which make us realize the impotence of our own tupennyworth of theory/perspective/prescription.

Despite being a regular rally-er in my youth, campaigning for principles close to my heart, marching through town centres, reclaiming the night, camping out in protest against US policies, staging street theatre productions to raise awareness of just causes, etc etc, it seems I have sunk into the complacency of middle age. (A stage in life I otherwise deny!!)

Perhaps it’s time I became more active again. Reignited that fire of conscience. Rejoined that political discourse process. Became the responsible, involved, participative citizen.

Although this week I have a bad back (and, as you know, not able to drive) and next week (well – in nine days time) I’ll be in the South of France. After which I’ll have to catch up with the fundraising target for the big charity adventure. Leaving just a little time left for the blogging. And very little for the body politic!! Oh dear!!

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About xtrekki

OK - I've been doing this for almost a year now and have still not mastered the mysteries of blogging!! WHAT are widgets? What are tags? Where on the dashboard do I find them or an explanation of how I can get them to work for me? In other aspects of my life I am fairly sharp. I could certainly be advisor to Hercule Poirot in unraveling his most impenetrable of cases. So - why oh why can I not figure out how to manage this bloomin' blog???????
This entry was posted in Current affairs, Books, Bookclubs, Grey's Anatomy, Stella, Adventures with friends, Shoes, Food, Wine, Family. And everything in between!!!. Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to A Raw Nerve…

  1. speccy says:

    I was leaving a long rant as a comment, but pressed an odd button and lost it all. Probably just as well… Enough to know that the demonisation of the ill and the dismissive attitude towards doctors makes me really really angry!

  2. xtrekki says:

    As it does myself. Not just because of my current situation, but in general. I get extremely irate that that was a report which was on the BBC news but that other report which I had read earlier in the week about MPs (including the multimlionaire Jeremy Hunt) were getting language classes on the public purse. Indeed that same J Hunt has been learning Mandarin – the language of his wife!!! No discussion there of ‘entitlement’!!!

  3. kileen says:

    Excellent & apt title for this blog post. Reports of that nature implying people on sick leave are malingering are counter productive. In this current climate, people feel pressurised to go to or return to work while still unwell, exacerbating their existing conditions. Reports like this add to the pressure.

    • xtrekki says:

      Yes, the title was both fact and irony! I could hardly believe that, as I hobbled over to turn on the radio this was the first news report I heard!!! I was, as you can see, outraged and affronted by the implication that too many of us are off for nothing!! And no – that is not a guilt reaction – it is annoyance that I am being made to feel as if I am simply loitering at home. (Apart from anything else – I have, actually, been working from home while I have been off!)

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