On discrimination

When 9/11 happened, I was living in America and became increasingly distressed, alarmed, and angered by the rise in Islamophobia, and disgusted by the general apathy of ‘good’ people’s response to the ‘war on terror’. I chose to move to France when the opportunity arrived as it was the one western country that was resisting the US/UK axis of evil nonsense. So when, after some time in France, I decided to a degree, it felt right to study religions at SOAS. There I focussed on the histories of the religions of the near and Middle East, and I chose that subject at that university so that I could arm myself with knowledge and expertise to argue against Islamophobic people. This same motivation to counter discrimination underscored my decision to do a masters in Iranian Studies (one of the most misunderstood countries in the world), and formed the crux of my PhD

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On Vitamin D

I recently watched this fascinating lecture on the relationship between Vitamin D deficiency and severe Covid-19 and thought it well worth sharing.   I am a very strong proponent for supplementing your diet with Vitamin D and have been doing so since 2010. In the UK, the guidance is that you should do so between late autumn to early spring if you are white, and all year round if you are black or Asian (i.e. have melanated skin). I currently supplement during the winter with 3 x 1000iu D3 tablets a day, spread over three meals, although when I lived in Scotland, I actually took 6 x 1000iu tablets a day. I have tried various different brands and definitely notice a difference between the cheapo brands and the better ones, and now use Solgar. I say notice a difference because the reason I started taking Vitamin D was to help with

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On proactive health management

As I have said elsewhere, and as should be evident from the fact that I am also a Personal Trainer, I care very much about my health and have approached it proactively since I was young. Thankfully, I seem to have some kind of innate orientation towards wellness and have always understood that to be well meant to actively work towards health in a continuous sense. Wellness and health have always been a journey for me, something I seek, and in seeking, largely achieve. In large part I think this orientation is because I have several chronic diseases – asthma, a very serious and rare form of eczema, and hay fever – which modern medicine can’t really do anything about. As such, I have had to learn how to minimise and control the symptoms of the diseases I am forced to live with. I have tried to do this, as much

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On vaccination status and rates of COVID infections

This rather striking graph was taken from the most recent COVID-19 vaccine surveillance report from Public Health England. (09/09/21 – link to PDF. Graph is on page 18.) What this demonstrates quite clearly, and many of us have known anecdotally for several months now, is that being double vaccinated doesn’t stop you catching, and one would presume, transmitting the virus. If it doesn’t stop you catching and transmitting the virus, why are so many people supporting the erosion of the civil and human rights of those who have chosen not to take the vaccine? It makes no logical or rational sense from a health perspective. I oppose segregation in general, mainly because I am a scholar of racism and work on other forms of discrimination. But even if you don’t share a general moral and intellectual opposition to discrimination, how can you justify “health”-based apartheid on the basis of the available data?

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On bodily integrity (autonomy)

I think that bodily integrity / autonomy is a human right. I think that I am the only person with the right to make a decision about my body and what happens to it, just as you are the only person who has the right to make decisions about your body. We each are our bodies, and no one should have supremacy over someone else. If bodily integrity is a human right, it is a right at all times and for all people, irrespective of whether you agree with, or approve of, them. Rights are hard lines that are not crossed. They either are, or they are not. If bodily integrity is a human right, then mandatory vaccinations are a violation of that right. If you support mandatory vaccinations outright, or by remaining silent, or by supporting coercive measures designed to take away the civil rights of unvaccinated people by disallowing them access

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