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Oppressor: It seems Johnny Mercer wants young people to join our armed forces so a Tory government can order them to brutalise others in the name of far-right-wing political dogma.

What kind of twisted mind does Plymouth’s Tory MP, Johnny Mercer possess?

He has started a huge debate with a claim that there is nothing wrong with killing to defeat the enemies of a nation.

Perhaps it hasn’t occurred to him that, to many of us, he is an enemy of the United Kingdom.

By his own reckoning, would I not be well within my rights to gather a few dozen like-minded people, track him down and beat him brutally with baseball bats wrapped in barbed wire (for example)?

No, of course I wouldn’t. He doesn’t mean it like that.

We’re told he made his comment in a tweet encouraging young people to join the army. It stated: “The application of violence to defeat the enemies of the nation has become worryingly unpopular. Nothing wrong with fighting (yes killing) for values/what you believe in. The oppressed/bullied/tormented/voiceless deserve it. Join the fight; best thing you’ll ever do.”

So he wasn’t discussing “the application of violence” for “values you believe in”. He meant he wants young people to enlist in order to apply violence in the name of values he believes in.

And what about the line that “the oppressed/bullied/tormented/voiceless deserve it”? If you think he means they deserve protection, think again!

Mr Mercer means the oppressed/bullied/tormented/voiceless deserve to be oppressed/bullied/tormented/voiceless.

If you don’t believe me, just look at Conservative policies regarding sick and disabled benefit claimants since 2010.

It’s a philosophy you can see espoused in the movie (and, I suppose, novel) Starship Troopers. Author Robert A Heinlein had imagined a future civilisation in which far-right politics had conquered the world and in one scene, a character states that violence is “the supreme authority from which all other authority is derived… Naked force has resolved more issues throughout history than any other factor. The contrary opinion, that violence never solves anything, is wishful thinking at its worst. People who forget that always pay.”

This is what Johnny Mercer believes – but notice that he doesn’t want to put himself at risk in the application of that “naked force”. He wants the plebs to do that for him.

Note that he served in the Army as an officer, not in the ranks.

Officers are the people who decide how troops should be deployed, and send them out – often to their deaths. But they don’t often put their own lives on the line, and I wonder how often they expect to be asked to take the lives of others, as Mr Mercer is clearly asking others to do in his tweet.

My point is that it is easy to sign orders for other people to die, and to expect other people to carry out those orders. But it is less easy to actually do it oneself.

So what does Mr Mercer’s tweet actually mean? As indicated, this has been the subject of heated debate.

An article in The Independent has published several responses which make good points, as follows:

“Noelle Moysi said: “Is this really what you mean? You’re an MP and words matter. Jo Cox was killed by someone fighting for what they believed in. Jo Cox’s murderer saw her as an enemy of the nation and shouted the words Britain first as he did it.”

“Helen Troup‏ said Mr Mercer’s remarks were “exactly the justification used by the IRA of course”.

“Lavendar Luke said: “I believe synth music is better than guitar music. Yet when I kill and fight for my beliefs I’m ‘a psychopath’ apparently. Thanks for standing up for me Johnny.””

My own suggestion about the meaning of the tweet would be this:

It means he wants he wants the young people of the United Kingdom to put themselves at risk of death in order to subject the oppressed/bullied/tormented/voiceless to the worst far-right-wing domination possible, while he and his fellow Tories sit back and call the shots.

No thanks. If he wants to go around bullying other people – at home or abroad – he can damn well try it on his own and see how far his “values” get him then.

These Tories always talk big when the odds are stacked in their favour and it’s your life on the line.

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