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“Lifestyle” or just plain nuts?

Steve Brandon has a merciless deconstruction of an article in this week’s Link that glorifies homelessness:

Ah, this is why we’re not seeing the word “homeless”, because Olivier used the magic “l” word, “lifestyle”, which, if you’re a liberal, is a magic talisman against all criticism of the way one lives, unless combined with one of the evil “c” words, “capitalist”, “consumerist”, “Christian”, or “conservative”, in which case your lifestyle is an open target for derision. Olivier calls the way he lives a “lifestyle”, so we’re not allowed mentioning any of the negative aspects or possible consequences lest we be painted as close-minded and judgemental.

[ . . . ]

Yup, a whole article about a homeless guy talking about his “lifestyle” in only the most positive terms, not mentioning any drawbacks to living on the street or daring to suggest that this guy might not be playing with a full deck. That would be downright insensitive and judgemental and mendicantophobic. Hooray for “diversity and culture”, the subject of this week’s Link!

Embracing diversity and culture does not mean we have to condone lazy, parasitic, or just plain unbalanced behaviour… a fact long lost on student rags like the Link. Someone who belives it’s more noble to mooch off friends than to actually do an honest day’s work is not exactly a wonderful role model for a bunch of university students.

{ 1 comment… add one }
  • Steve Brandon 12.03.04, 4:12 PM

    Not that I don’t have any sympathy for the guy, who I think probably needs help for problems of the sort not even alluded to in the article, but that article was talking about homelessness as a “lifestyle” as though there are no drawbacks to living penniless on the streets in Montreal and… even though I’ve generally been much too preoccupied with other things lately to “Fisk” articles all that much, that one really deserved it.

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