I have been following the @GreenRibbonIRL account on Twitter and reading about the conversations being started about mental health. Wearing the Green Ribbon, or blogging about the event, indicates a willingness to start and continue this ongoing conversation.
I’m nearly finished my part of a novel that concerns itself greatly with mental health (WWI combat soldiers had high rates of shell shock) and stigma (the white feather itself) It’s strange how little people change from that day to this. I hope that the “conversation” will resonate come publication day! Yesterday was National Conscientious Objectors day in England and I feel it is fitting that the two events are so close.
I have always felt that the act of stigma carries a dubious legitimacy. Then and now, it’s about one thing. Power.
Also that the conversation cannot just be had between the vulnerable and relatively powerless. The powerful need to examine their ways, check their sanity privilege, and throw their weight behind this discussion. If for nothing other than economic reasons. Even the War Office needed to do something in 1917 when 40 per cent of their fighting men were disabled by extreme mental stress.