Sunday, 24 January 2010

Class - you'll know it when you see it

I’m fed up with the politics of class – not only is it awful, divisive politics but it reinforces our gross misuse of the word.

Class is…

Writing a personal note of thanks to all the speakers in your group after every Council meeting

Walking out from a vote because you know someone on the opposition isn’t there because their child’s ill with cancer

Putting your child’s education ahead of a political party – even if it gets you the sack or results in ridicule

Trudging three miles through the snow to a meeting
because you’d said you’d be there – and not complaining

Handing back embarrassing papers to someone and
refusing the chance to exploit what those papers contain

Sticking anonymous allegations and complaints in the bin – the only place they deserve to go

Understanding the difference between personal insult and the rough and tumble of politics – and apologising if you get it wrong

Class isn’t about where you were born. It isn’t about your school. Or your university. Or the clothes you wear. Or how much money you’ve got. Or who your friends are. Class is doing the right thing – a matter of attitude not origin. Norman Tebbit has class; Cecil Parkinson doesn’t. Ernest Bevin had class: Aneurin Bevan didn’t. Bobby Moore had class; Vinnie Jones doesn’t.

Perhaps if we worried more about how we behaved. If we stood more on our own hind legs. If we looked to ourselves to solve our problems. If we looked out for others. Perhaps, if we tried not to find excuses or to blame…we mind finally find out what class means.



Pam Nash said...

Hurrah, you've fixed the time on here - now THAT'S class! ;o)

But seriously.........class can't be learned, it's something that is an instinct, it's about valuing other people. My father and grandfather were gentlemen - not, by any stretch, financially rich; but rich in intangible qualities that made them kind, regardless of who they were dealing with. I hope I inherited some of their traits, but I would never measure up to them.

Larner said...

I agree wholeheartedly on the subject of class politics, but surely class is not mentioning any of the above.

Simon Cooke said...

I never said I has class!