Anti-Empire

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Very brave!

Thanks for the encouragement, RP. I'm not sure if I'm brave or stupid; I suppose I'll figure it out along the way...

Yes- its not easy to reconcile our personal views with our jobs, our actions, the way we live- but it is essential that we try. I also studied social work and then later policy, and wonder what examples you would give for social work as an oppressive role? I see your point about dividing people into functional versus dysfunctional, etc. but do not see my work in that way, we all need to acknowledge that black/white thinking on this is hardly relevant. Nobody is functional or dysfunctional- and we change from day to day. I think as social workers or people "in the field" we should not divide ourselves into categories.
Many social work programs not only encourage study of oppression, but require it, and I hope that you are able to express yourself with support to learn and grow in the field.

Definitely, social work is much better than the other helping professions in taking context into account. At the same time there has been a definite shift towards the medical model, and traditional therapy, in an effort to augment the status of the profession.

That being said, of course there are people who do fabulous work in all of these professions! I am sure that in my own work, some will support me and some won't. I am prepared to stand my ground.

With regards to examples of social work playing an oppressive role, in Canada, social workers played a key role in removing Aboriginal children from their families which was devastating for the Aboriginal cultures. Disproportionate removal of children by child welfare continues today.

I would argue that social work, and other professions (e.g. law enforcement), often reflect and reproduce power structures in society.

I have no doubt in my mind that you are as wonderful in character and charisma in the flesh as you are in writing.

From the sounds of it, and in reviewing all of your posts, you *are being the change, and a very good one at that.

Zen Master Rinzai remarked to one of his students upon how best to help others that all one need do is "to speak and act the truth in the midst of situations which beg for us to lie".

You would make Rinzai proud.

Thank you for the compliments on my blog, If you need any help at with yours let me know.

I want to post this entry on Digital Memoirs, if that's okay with you.

Thank you for such kind remarks.

It is remarkable how often situations do beg for us to lie. (I love how the word "beg" captures the tension of these situations.)

There are many times that I concede...sometimes out of fear, and others out of a desire to please people.

I am trying though... as so many of us are.

I posted on my blog recently on the York Conference in Canada, and since you are Canadian maybe you know about it, I read about it on a website called Mothers Movement and then read more in some other places.. Anyway, I ask because the theme related to Aboriginal children and since you mentioned that issue here...
Its not easy for people to admit the desire to please people, but I suspect it's something we secretly give far more weight to than we realize.

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