On the Problems with Communication, Discourse, and Social Justice


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Its very hard if not impossible to accept an ought request that comes with a series of patently false is assumptions.

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Berinor wrote:

I don't claim to be the arbiter or really the authority on these things, but this is my take on heteronormativity by way of male-normativity.

In the 1960's, if I said there was a doctor in a story, that doctor was either a man or there was a reason otherwise. The old "brain-teaser" about how the kid was the doctor's son even though his father died/was elsewhere illustrates this pretty well for me (solution: the doctor is the kid's mother).

Now, most shows that involve doctors will have some of them be women. Perhaps not half or a similar proportion to the real world, but some. If there's a woman doctor, the reason she's there isn't to be a woman. She's a character who happens to be a woman. Her storylines might be different because she's a woman, but they don't have to be.

That's the idea here. Breaking heteronormativity isn't saying that the majority of people aren't heterosexual. It's saying that if I have a character, that character might just happen to be gay. In Pathfinder, I see it in the fey that have charm effects against "characters that are attracted to females" rather than against "men". It's about designing your world with the awareness that people like this exist and letting the consequences flow.

For another example, look at Sissyl's "rank these people in order of moral superiority" exercise. There are four masculine names and one feminine one, and one gets the idea that the Ann character wouldn't have been included except the scenario involved someone asking for sex, so you can't keep the male-as-neutral default and straight-as-neutral default at the same time across the board.


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mechaPoet wrote:
For another example, look at Sissyl's "rank these people in order of moral superiority" exercise. There are four masculine names and one feminine one, and one gets the idea that the Ann character wouldn't have been included except the scenario involved someone asking for sex, so you can't keep the male-as-neutral default and straight-as-neutral default at the same time across the board.

I also notice that all of the people presented are pretty much morally bankrupt, so what does that tell you?


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DM Beckett wrote:

There is also the other side of that "Person B" isn't going to see, like the fact that I was actually targeted often for being gay (I'm not, but I had a lot of gay friends), or poor, or that you know, getting shot at because I was white while deployed more recently, might actually put me, (according to Person B's own standards) for invoking privilege, actually at a lower level of "privilege".

In other words, Person B, of whatever group they are a part of, assumes that I, as Person A did or does not have the same breath of experience that they do, and therefore should take a back seat to a conversation at hand. But, part of the point I was making is what happens that that turns out to be flatly wrong. Does Person B then need to take a back seat?

And that's basically where the concept of "but your playing it on easy mode, try walking in my moccasins for a mile" breaks down.

I think the conversation about privilege has value, but that value does not come from a hardship competition. I know a lot of people play it that way, but that's counter-productive and I agree. I don't disagree that based on your accounting of your life, you have done a great job for yourself with the help of your hard-working parents despite a rough start to things. As I look at this, it comes across as patronizing, but please believe that I don't mean it that way at all.

And now I'm going to make some assumptions about you and I hope you'll forgive me where I misstep.

Where privilege has value is that if you were to say "If these people would just do as the police say, they wouldn't have the problems they do. They brought it on themselves." The specific difficulties you have had in life, while significant, likely put you in a position where that's true about your police interactions. Maybe you personally were even abused by a hyper-corrupt police officer, but you still feel like you can trust nearly all police officers to be reasonable. My understanding is that that's not the experience of a wide swath of African-Americans in this country.

To put it another way, privilege isn't a spectrum where based on how many points you get, you land on a certain level. It's a series of flags that contribute to what's a given for you and what's not. So it's not a matter of saying "you're playing on easy mode". It's more of saying "Oh, the level I was in didn't have any lava. Hmm... mine had guys with lasers. That's why I chose the Deft Dodger trait instead of the Light Step one."


BigNorseWolf wrote:
TheJeff wrote:

Words don't always just mean what their roots sound like.

You can accept that heterosexuality is most common and still not subscribe to heteronormativity.
Can you believe that heterosexuality and gender roles work together and have an enormous genetic component that are beyond the influence of socialization without believing in heteronormativity? That seems to have been the working definition before.

Did you actually read either of the definitions I quoted?

Or are you responding to me expecting me to defend some other definition?

I was directly responding to your (paraphrased) "You can't get rid of heteronormativity because most people are heterosexual and thus it's normal".
Not to any argument about genetic components or such.


PM'd to re rail the discussion.

Dark Archive

And that's the big problem with discussing this. We can't even agree on definitions of words or which definitions to use.


Berinor wrote:
Where privilege has value is that if you were to say "If these people would just do as the police say, they wouldn't have the problems they do. They brought it on themselves."

The term is still problematic because it amounts to "Oh you're lucky, the cop only stopped you and talked to you for 5 minutes, they didn't shoot you" The explanation that compliance very often doesn't work for african americans would be better off standing on its own. (or with an unfortunately easy to fine youtube video compilation)

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Kirth Gersen wrote:
mechaPoet wrote:
For another example, look at Sissyl's "rank these people in order of moral superiority" exercise. There are four masculine names and one feminine one, and one gets the idea that the Ann character wouldn't have been included except the scenario involved someone asking for sex, so you can't keep the male-as-neutral default and straight-as-neutral default at the same time across the board.
I also notice that all of the people presented are pretty much morally bankrupt, so what does that tell you?

For me it's unrelated. I didn't actually read the scenario; as I said upthread, I am not interested in the hypothetical thought experiments that people on these boards are so fond of. The point is that it's presented as a way to examine human morality, and all the characters who are meant to represent different kinds of immorality are defaulted to a male presentation, except there's one presented as female because otherwise one or more of them aren't straight, which "detracts/distracts" from this example of "fundamental human behavior and views on morality".

Customer Service Representative

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To further demonstrate the idea that communication can be difficult when we all interpret things differently I would like to mention how I have always thought of privilege. I think many people have a tendency to feel like our life experiences, how the world works for us, is how it is for everyone. I do a thing regularly and see people around me who do it as well, so I think that is a normal thing everyone does. But it may be a regional, or cultural, or even familial thing. So I extrapolate that into privileges, but I'm more concerned with mine than with others. I'm male, so I have male privilege. To me this means that there are scenarios where being male gives me an advantage that women don't have. Maybe it's an advantage I'll never see, but that doesn't mean it wasn't there or that it doesn't exist. If I apply for a job and I get it, I will never know who else applied for it, or what their qualifications were, or why I was chosen over them. Maybe that advantage came into play, or maybe it didn't. I think it is important for me to know that it exists and is a possibility. Being aware of the various privileges I have helps me to not make assumptions about other people, and hopefully makes the interactions and relationships I have with others better ones. So for me, understanding privilege is a means of self betterment.

This has been an interesting thread for me to read because it has given me some other perspectives to consider, like the way assigning privilege can make others feel attacked or belittled. It has also not just discussed but demonstrated how difficult communication can be when different members of the discussion understand words or ideas in different ways.

Grand Lodge

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Auxmaulous wrote:
And that's the big problem with discussing this. We can't even agree on definitions of words or which definitions to use.

Like every other discussion we have on these forums.


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There's been a lot of talk in here about how the complexity of privilege means that it isn't useful as an idea. But we talk about complex systems every day, as observed earlier it's the context that matters. For example the weather is an incredibly complex system, but it manages to be one of the most popular points of conversation around the world. People can comment on how the weather is today and on how awful it is, and then other people can observe the exact same conditions but enter into a discussion about how great the weather is. But that ambiguity doesn't render the weather useless as a concept.

To lurch back onto the topic of privilege it isn't some kind of scorecard where I determine I have 40 points of privilege, you have 50 points of privilege, therefore you're more privileged than me and therefore need to give me stuff. Everybody has privilege in some areas and does not have privilege in others.

And having privilege doesn't mean you can't engage in discussions where your privilege might apply, it just means that it's something worth keeping in the back of your mind. I can still talk to my girlfriend about female-only issues and she can still talk to me about male-only issues, but we also need to consider that our different backgrounds mean the male-only thing has never happened to her and the female-only thing has never happened to me.

All privilege really means is that our lives and our experiences are determined to some degree by who we are and what we look like. It's not even a matter of being harder or easier, but recognising that who I am means I've had different experiences from somebody else. My different experiences aren't better or worse than another's, but they mean that some people have direct experience of issues that I don't and vice versa. And that knowledge about different experiences should help to inform how I look at the world and how I view what others say.


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Diego V wrote:
To further demonstrate the idea that communication can be difficult when we all interpret things differently I would like to mention how I have always thought of privilege. I think many people have a tendency to feel like our life experiences, how the world works for us, is how it is for everyone. I do a thing regularly and see people around me who do it as well, so I think that is a normal thing everyone does. But it may be a regional, or cultural, or even familial thing. So I extrapolate that into privileges, but I'm more concerned with mine than with others. I'm male, so I have male privilege. To me this means that there are scenarios where being male gives me an advantage that women don't have. Maybe it's an advantage I'll never see, but that doesn't mean it wasn't there or that it doesn't exist. If I apply for a job and I get it, I will never know who else applied for it, or what their qualifications were, or why I was chosen over them. Maybe that advantage came into play, or maybe it didn't. I think it is important for me to know that it exists and is a possibility.

I have encountered this professionally sometimes-some people refuse to believe I got a job for any reason beyond tokenism for race or sexuality.


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BigNorseWolf wrote:
Berinor wrote:
Where privilege has value is that if you were to say "If these people would just do as the police say, they wouldn't have the problems they do. They brought it on themselves."
The term is still problematic because it amounts to "Oh you're lucky, the cop only stopped you and talked to you for 5 minutes, they didn't shoot you" The explanation that compliance very often doesn't work for african americans would be better off standing on its own. (or with an unfortunately easy to fine youtube video compilation)

You may be right. I want there to be a shorthand for "Keep in mind that this might be different than the way it has played out in your life. There are factors that might be hard to anticipate." Kind of a real-life version of "expect table variance" to risk being crass. This term seems like it has some momentum, so I'd like to redeem it. I don't think it's the wording I would choose, but it's close enough to the concept I'm after that I'm willing to forgive it those gaps. In my experience, better to have an imperfect term than to have nothing at all.


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mechaPoet wrote:
I didn't actually read the scenario

Then why are you trying to analyze it for gender politics, or anything else, for that matter?

Liberty's Edge

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Freehold DM wrote:
some people refuse to believe I got a job for any reason beyond tokenism for race or sexuality.

You mean you didn't?


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I know I did. My hooves look good.

Spoiler:
Actually, I'm the token yankee in my office.


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Krensky wrote:
Freehold DM wrote:
some people refuse to believe I got a job for any reason beyond tokenism for race or sexuality.
You mean you didn't?

sometimes i wonder/worry. But not that often.

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Kirth Gersen wrote:
mechaPoet wrote:
I didn't actually read the scenario
Then why are you trying to analyze it for gender politics, or anything else, for that matter?

Because I skimmed enough posts replying to it to understand that even though the situations presented in it had nothing explicitly to do with gender, the character cast is still 80% male. And because I kind of make it my business to talk about gender politics in everything, because i don't think enough people realize that gender politics is in everything.

Liberty's Edge

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Freehold DM wrote:
Krensky wrote:
Freehold DM wrote:
some people refuse to believe I got a job for any reason beyond tokenism for race or sexuality.
You mean you didn't?
sometimes i wonder/worry. But not that often.

And here I was hoping for a Hooper X Black Rage moment. ;)


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mechaPoet wrote:
I love when we get to the part where people get mad at me for insinuating that biology as a humanly constructed field of science has human social influences, and then also argue what words mean with dictionary definitions.

it is a difficult pill for some to swallow.

Contributor

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BigNorseWolf wrote:

While an incredibly small sample size, the David Reimer case should have pretty much ended tabula rasa as a rational idea.

While still seemingly fashionable in some social science circles, it's junk science that deserves to be left in the 19th century insomuch as any claims that it holds for either sexuality or gender identity. The horror show that was the David Reimer case, or modern day conversion therapy abuses put a nail in that coffin. Though like a vampire it keeps trying to clamber its way out of the shallow grave we buried it in once we actually began to get empirical data on the brain and larger sample sizes.


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Berinor wrote:


You may be right. I want there to be a shorthand for "Keep in mind that this might be different than the way it has played out in your life. There are factors that might be hard to anticipate." Kind of a real-life version of "expect table variance" to risk being crass. This term seems like it has some momentum, so I'd like to redeem it. I don't think it's the wording I would choose, but it's close enough to the concept I'm after that I'm willing to forgive it those gaps. In my experience, better to have an imperfect term than to have nothing at all.

Its a synonym for an unearned, unwarranted advantage under its common definition, so thats how it will be read and how it will be slipped into the conversation on occasion.

The only momentum I've seen the term use us baackwards: it slams the breaks on making your point.


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I'm pretty sure I'm in the privileged category no matter what the metric, but I've never felt the negative connotations that others clearly do when they hear the word. However, I've clearly missed most of the background conversation which makes this an issue (this conversation seems decidedly over-heated, to me).

I don't want to derail the thread with What? Where? Who? questions... But I am very curious so wondered if someone would mind pming me a link to where "cis scum" was used and not seen by all concerned as offensive? I'm really struggling to get my head around that. :/

EDIT: Or was it perhaps from a different forum? I guess I could conceive of some places where that might be seen as okay. I really can't imagine it on paizo.com though.


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Which part of the phrase is offensive? Cis or scum?

If I used the term "police scum", would we be arguing about whether or not the word "police" should exist?


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If you call someone scum, you are saying they are bad. If you call them police scum, you are saying they are bad because they are police. Presumably they know they are police. It is a very odd thing to call someone cis scum. Fully on the level of not-redhead scum and lefthanded scum.


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Sissyl wrote:
If you call someone scum, you are saying they are bad. If you call them police scum, you are saying they are bad because they are police. Presumably they know they are police. It is a very odd thing to call someone cis scum. Fully on the level of not-redhead scum and lefthanded scum.

those southpaws are shifty.


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definitely something sinister about southpaws.


Irontruth wrote:

Which part of the phrase is offensive? Cis or scum?

If I used the term "police scum", would we be arguing about whether or not the word "police" should exist?

This is a good point, with interesting insight.

However it misses some vital additional elements of language and social interaction: if the first time the police were ever called police was "police scum" than, naturally, they will be deeply suspicious of anyone calling them "police" - what's more, if the majority or, even, just enough of the time (the exact number of "enough" is going to vary) the police are addressed as "police" is in the context of "police scum" (or, at least, with that implication, if the word "scum" is excised by force)... than said officers are going to be very wary of such a term, yes.

It does not matter that the term was derived by people wishing to distinguish themselves as "not police" who had no anger or malice toward them. These "not police" who had no anger or malice created the term, but the police were first introduced to it in a hostile context by (presumably) radicals on the fringe - therefore, it is strongly associated with those "radicals" on the fringe (or, perhaps, just the deeply impassioned or young or misled) by those who are identified by the non-radicals as "police"... perfect fodder for the emotional baggage and a sharp divide in communication.

Those few who embrace it under that paradigm are being, frankly, weird. Good and kind and are working hard to see past the radicals to the people who are reasonable, using said term... but weird, because they're embracing cognitive dissonance.

Now, there are other "police" who were, all along, working with non-police, and were introduced to the term "police" by those luminaries who created and intended it for the purpose of defining the police as themselves, while allowing others to be "non-police" - and to them, it is normal and natural to hold the use of the term as non-offensive and non-aggressive.

Because that's how people - and languages - work.

As an aside, in this scenario, if the word manages to hang on long enough to become ubiquitous, and it persists long enough to engage in the public consciousness, while continuing to be heavily used by anti-police folk, then, inevitably, there will either be a strong push to either "reclaim" the term by the now-generally-accepted "police" or to squash the use of said term in public discourse, relegating it to only a term used by the gauche or "-ist" people that are no longer in vogue. Presupposing police are even legally allowed to be police at that time, which is where this analogy suddenly goes "Aw, crap" because police is such a different and weird term.

Now, please select any term created by one group of people ("group A") to label a different group of people ("group B") (or by members of group B who were strongly enough associated with group A until it's indistinguishable in origin), and replace "police" with that. Barring, of course, the last half of the last sentence in the ooc aside, above, as that would not apply to just about anything other than "police" as a term.

"Police" generally gets a pass because the term was created with the office - or has been around for so long that it doesn't really matter any more which was created first.

On the other hand, I would strongly recommend not going up to an officer and calling them "cops" or "coppers" or "pig" - at best you'll get a weird look, but far more likely you'll be treated more suspiciously, despite the fact that two out of three of those are no longer direct insults, if they ever were (and the second has fallen out of use, to the best of my knowledge).


BigNorseWolf wrote:
definitely something sinister about southpaws.

What about we of ambiguitydexterity?


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BigNorseWolf wrote:
Berinor wrote:


You may be right. I want there to be a shorthand for "Keep in mind that this might be different than the way it has played out in your life. There are factors that might be hard to anticipate." Kind of a real-life version of "expect table variance" to risk being crass. This term seems like it has some momentum, so I'd like to redeem it. I don't think it's the wording I would choose, but it's close enough to the concept I'm after that I'm willing to forgive it those gaps. In my experience, better to have an imperfect term than to have nothing at all.

Its a synonym for an unearned, unwarranted advantage under its common definition, so thats how it will be read and how it will be slipped into the conversation on occasion.

The only momentum I've seen the term use us baackwards: it slams the breaks on making your point.

If you're appealing to the common definition, I request (I promise without sass, although I don't know how to show that in text) that you look in the dictionary. I just did because my experience with the word doesn't have those connotations and I was curious if there were further definitions that I don't think of. My basest experience with the word is with things like "driving is a privilege, not a right" where someone points out that something can be taken away. And some of these things fall into that category and others really shouldn't but fundamentally do get taken away from some.

But I won't further defend the term unless there's something new said. I think there's value in the concept. There's a group that staked out this term to describe that concept. Being lazy, I use their term rather than coming up with my own. If sufficient people who are allies to the concept are put off by the term (BNW, I think this describes you) and that's not a warming-up-to-it thing, the term should be abandoned in favor of another.

I understand that words have power in their meaning but am either not adept or motivated enough to find and drive the adoption of a new term. So in the meantime I'll use the flawed one.


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Tacticslion wrote:


What about we of ambiguitydexterity?

Straight out. Pick a side already! Seriously, how can you trust someone who can't make up their mind what hand to use?

*coughs*

Please note the above is *in humor* and not intended as an insult. If it is in poor form, please accept my apologies.


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privilege: a right, immunity, or benefit enjoyed only by a person beyond the advantages of most:


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BigNorseWolf wrote:

privilege: a right, immunity, or benefit enjoyed only by a person beyond the advantages of most:

That doesn't imply unearned. It doesn't imply unwarranted. Those are the parts that have negative connotations, not whether it's 5% or 95% that have that particular privilege. I would argue that the only part of that definition that isn't exactly how we're trying to use the term is "most" instead of "some".


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Berinor wrote:
BigNorseWolf wrote:

privilege: a right, immunity, or benefit enjoyed only by a person beyond the advantages of most:

That doesn't imply unearned. It doesn't imply unwarranted. Those are the parts that have negative connotations, not whether it's 5% or 95% that have that particular privilege.

Race, the economic situation you grew up, sexual orientation, your brain and body syncing up aren't something you did, so they're by definition unearned

Quote:
I would argue that the only part of that definition that isn't exactly how we're trying to use the term is "most".

Its a pretty big chunk of it. Its like people are trying to set themselves as the default way that everyone should look at everything and that really doesn't work.

Quote:
and that's not a warming-up-to-it thing, the term should be abandoned in favor of another.

I realize that I'm an especially philistine example but what makes me tune out is...

1) the very persnickety, specialized language and how attached people are to it. I honestly don't know how to say anything without seeming to run into a hidden tripwire, somewhere. Its almost platonic in the way it equates the word for a thing WITH that thing.

2) The view of gender as a social construct and seeing biology as a problem rather than both the problem and thus the only viable solution. Socialization isn't responsible for overcoming individuals behavior the same way a four year old is not responsible for a St. Bernard they're trying to walk.

3) The focus on raising awareness or consciousness and that not doing so is a moral failing. You can't have every small minority group represented in all things.

4) The apparent expectation of the majority to change their feelings and very small, even suconcious behavior they can't control.


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Tacticslion wrote:
Irontruth wrote:

Which part of the phrase is offensive? Cis or scum?

If I used the term "police scum", would we be arguing about whether or not the word "police" should exist?

This is a good point, with interesting insight.

However it misses some vital additional elements of language and social interaction: if the first time the police were ever called police was "police scum" than, naturally, they will be deeply suspicious of anyone calling them "police" - what's more, if the majority or, even, just enough of the time (the exact number of "enough" is going to vary) the police are addressed as "police" is in the context of "police scum" (or, at least, with that implication, if the word "scum" is excised by force)... than said officers are going to be very wary of such a term, yes.

It does not matter that the term was derived by people wishing to distinguish themselves as "not police" who had no anger or malice toward them. These "not police" who had no anger or malice created the term, but the police were first introduced to it in a hostile context by (presumably) radicals on the fringe - therefore, it is strongly associated with those "radicals" on the fringe (or, perhaps, just the deeply impassioned or young or misled) by those who are identified by the non-radicals as "police"... perfect fodder for the emotional baggage and a sharp divide in communication.

Those few who embrace it under that paradigm are being, frankly, weird. Good and kind and are working hard to see past the radicals to the people who are reasonable, using said term... but weird, because they're embracing cognitive dissonance.

Now, there are other "police" who were, all along, working with non-police, and were introduced to the term "police" by those luminaries who created and intended it for the purpose of defining the police as themselves, while allowing others to be "non-police" - and to them, it is normal and natural to hold the use of the term as...

I think this largely ignores the primary factor though.

Cis is not an insult. Cis scum is an insult. The consistent word in both of those is "cis". How did it change from not an insult into an insult?

I think your focus on the word "police" in that is misguided. It misses the point. Calling someone scum is an insult, pretty much regardless of what word or adjective precedes it. Cis isn't some special case where it is ONLY found in front of the word scum.

I can very much imagine a Key and Peele sketch, where something like the following exchange happens:

Man: Shut up you white scum!
Man 2: Hey, hey, we don't use that kind of language around here.
Man: What, scum?
Man 2: No, white.
Man: uhhh....
Man 2: Normal people don't need to be described like that. They're just called normal.
Man: But you called me black just a minute ago.
Man 2: That's different, you're not normal.


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BigNorseWolf wrote:
the very persnickety, specialized language and how attached people are to it. I honestly don't know how to say anything without seeming to run into a hidden tripwire, somewhere. Its almost platonic in the way it equates the word for a thing WITH that thing.

Those are big parts of my differences with many of the SJW types. The basic moral reasoning too often tends to be simply knee-jerk emotion and contrived displays of faux empathy, with no logical reasons behind any of the lofty declarations beyond, "Well, someone might feel that way, so it must be true!" -- but somehow even that applies only when it's popular with the in-crowd.

What prevents SJW "morals" from being totally idiosyncratic to each individual is the avidity with which they adopt the jargon, and the gleeful ruthlessness with which they weed out any dissention among their peers, Jacobin-style ("raise awareness" often seems to translate to "root out heresy"). That's why I was talking about too much consensus-seeking before, and the need for someone to play devil's advocate.

At the risk of singling out one person, I'd like to commend thejeff for using far more logic and internal consistency than most of the SJWs I talk with -- his recommendation to nationalize the boat flowed directly from his previous stance, for example, instead of being spouted out at random. It's arguments like that that sway me -- not any of the condescending, high-handed assumptions of divine authority and demands for submission that I'm usually faced with.

"You said the word 'queer' -- you are a total homophobe and a bad person!" doesn't impress me (in my defense, the speaker was pointedly ignoring any of the context in which the word was used, and seized on the mere utterance of the word as an excuse to start scolding and lecturing).

"When that's done, then X happens, which leads to Y, which would appear to be against your own interests" absolutely does impress me, and very often causes me to change my actions -- if the premises are correct and the logic sound. This has happened many times in the past, and I expect it to happen in the future.


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Steve Geddes wrote:
I'm pretty sure I'm in the privileged category no matter what the metric, but I've never felt the negative connotations that others clearly do when they hear the word. However, I've clearly missed most of the background conversation which makes this an issue (this conversation seems decidedly over-heated, to me).

The issue comes into play when someone is using the academic-born, social justice definition of privilege (which is essentially "being able to climb a mountain starting at sea level, versus having to climb out of a chasm to get to sea level just to start climbing the mountain") try's to discuss the topic with someone who has only ever used the common definition of privilege (helicopter tour of the summit and a photo op with the plebs who schlepped up the mountain.)

People take offense at the idea that "privilege" is credited for their hard work, because even though the speaker means "you got to start at sea-level in stead of climbing out of the chasm first," the listener hears, "your lazy ass just rode to the top in a helicopter."

Basically, "privilege" as it is used in the academic sense means, "not starting in the hole," where as in common usage it means, "getting a head start." Functionally they both mean the same thing, but the connotations are vastly different.

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I'll never argue that there aren't people involved in social justice, especially in online spaces, who are toxic and inflammatory in ways that seem like they're just trying to pounce on "gotcha" moments to scold people. You know disapproves of that behavior, besides the rational-logical crowd? Other social justice people, who understand that learning to be an ally to the oppressed involves unlearning a lot of oppressive behaviors that are normalized within their society. So I guess what I'm saying is, there are SJWs who just want to call out people, but there are also plenty that point out when people do crappy things and explain why they're crappy so you don't do them again. Because everyone in a society with oppression picks up behaviors and language that comes from and reinforces the normalcy of that oppression, and learning to act against it is a long and difficult process.

tl;dr: some SJWs are jerks and some aren't and they have disagreements, almost like they're individual people and not an internet hive mind

The other thing I'll say is that I find it pretty hard to take someone seriously if they call arguments they dislike "emotional" and arguments they do like "logical." It stands to reason that if your argument holds on its own, you don't need to specifically point out how logical it is except to reinforce your own ego and conception of yourself as a person who values logic. It seems to me that the emotion versus logic dichotomy (which is a false dichotomy) is a tool for dismissing people's opinions rather than examining, deconstructing, and/or critiquing them.


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Kirth Gersen wrote:
BigNorseWolf wrote:
the very persnickety, specialized language and how attached people are to it. I honestly don't know how to say anything without seeming to run into a hidden tripwire, somewhere. Its almost platonic in the way it equates the word for a thing WITH that thing.

Those are big parts of my differences with many of the SJW types. The basic moral reasoning too often tends to be simply knee-jerk emotion and contrived displays of faux empathy, with no logical reasons behind any of the lofty declarations beyond, "Well, someone might feel that way, so it must be true!" -- but somehow even that applies only when it's popular with the in-crowd.

What prevents SJW "morals" from being totally idiosyncratic to each individual is the avidity with which they adopt the jargon, and the gleeful ruthlessness with which they weed out any dissention among their peers, Jacobin-style ("raise awareness" often seems to translate to "root out heresy"). That's why I was talking about too much consensus-seeking before, and the need for someone to play devil's advocate.

At the risk of singling out one person, I'd like to commend thejeff for using far more logic and internal consistency than most of the SJWs I talk with -- his recommendation to nationalize the boat flowed directly from his previous stance, for example, instead of being spouted out at random. It's arguments like that that sway me -- not any of the condescending, high-handed assumptions of divine authority and demands for submission that I'm usually faced with.

"You said the word 'queer' -- you are a total homophobe and a bad person!" doesn't impress me (in my defense, the speaker was pointedly ignoring any of the context in which the word was used, and seized on the mere utterance of the word as an excuse to start scolding and lecturing).

"When that's done, then X happens, which leads to Y, which would appear to be against your own interests" absolutely does impress me, and very often causes me to change my actions -- if the premises are...

I've got to say that I find far more people I talk to (online or in real life) on the "social justice" side of things to be much closer to reasonable than to the SJW stereotype. Maybe it's just the type of people I happen to discuss these things with, though many of them get slapped with the "SJW" label, as do I on occasion. I've heard "cis" used descriptively far more often than in a "cis scum" sense, for example.

I'm perfectly willing to believe there are "condescending, high-handed" SJWs out there, but I don't see them anywhere near as ubiquitous or dominate as I'd expect from some of the discussions about them.

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mechaPoet wrote:
tl;dr: some SJWs are jerks and some aren't and they have disagreements, almost like they're individual people and not an internet hive mind

Just a non-specific agreement with the general sentiment here. Folks, it may be more appropriate to reframe some of the arguments we're seeing as "I don't like seeing this specific behavior" rather than "all the folks who believe X do things I don't like" (paraphrasing here). This turns the discussion around to be less "finger-pointy" (and less likely to implode into something we'll have to start removing posts for and potentially locking) and back to a discussion on the specific behaviors brought up in the original/first posts of the thread.


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Mechapoet wrote:
So I guess what I'm saying is, there are SJWs who just want to call out people, but there are also plenty that point out when people do crappy things and explain why they're crappy so you don't do them again. Because everyone in a society with oppression picks up behaviors and language that comes from and reinforces the normalcy of that oppression, and learning to act against it is a long and difficult process.

These have blended together and for the life of me I cannot tell them apart.

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BigNorseWolf wrote:
Mechapoet wrote:
So I guess what I'm saying is, there are SJWs who just want to call out people, but there are also plenty that point out when people do crappy things and explain why they're crappy so you don't do them again. Because everyone in a society with oppression picks up behaviors and language that comes from and reinforces the normalcy of that oppression, and learning to act against it is a long and difficult process.

These have blended together and for the life of me I cannot tell them apart.

All you have to do is ask ;D


mechaPoet wrote:


All you have to do is ask ;D

One of you tells the truth and one of you always lies ? Unfortunately there's only one of you standing there.


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I find it interesting that I've only heard cis folks use the phrase "cis scum".

We simply say we don't trust cis people, and that gets recentered by cisfeelings about how wronged they are, rather than asking us what it is that makes us not trust you.


Tirisfal wrote:

I find it interesting that I've only heard cis folks use the phrase "cis scum".

We simply say we don't trust cis people, and that gets recentered by cisfeelings about how wronged they are, rather than asking us what it is that makes us not trust you.

Well, yes. Because you are wronging the individual.

When you take any individual who probably has done nothing wrong and blame them for the failings of a group as unspecific as 99+% of the planet that's some pretty serious discrimination. Replace cis with any minority and read it again.


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BigNorseWolf wrote:
Tirisfal wrote:

I find it interesting that I've only heard cis folks use the phrase "cis scum".

We simply say we don't trust cis people, and that gets recentered by cisfeelings about how wronged they are, rather than asking us what it is that makes us not trust you.

Well, yes. Because you are wronging the individual.

When you take any individual who probably has done nothing wrong and blame them for the failings of a group as unspecific as 99+% of the planet that's some pretty serious discrimination. Replace cis with any minority and read it again.

I'm saying that the phrase "cis scum" is one I hear a lot and it is a false insult that doesn't exist in our circles. Cis folks made it up to make themselves feel like victims because cis folks are not anywhere near as marginalized as trans folks and they have to make it about themselves...every time.

Trans folks are 100% incapable of discriminating against cis people...discrimination is a institutional system that requires us to have social power over you.

Cis folks always use "cis scum" as a way to show that "you're prejudice against us! cis is an insult" and I'm like..."I've never used those two words together...? I just don't trust y'all and making things all about you like you are now is one of the reasons"

Cis people murder us. Cis people discriminate against us in the workplace. Cis people don't recognize our existence half the time.

Saying that I don't trust you isn't discrimination, its a learned behavior.


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mechaPoet wrote:
BigNorseWolf wrote:
Mechapoet wrote:
So I guess what I'm saying is, there are SJWs who just want to call out people, but there are also plenty that point out when people do crappy things and explain why they're crappy so you don't do them again. Because everyone in a society with oppression picks up behaviors and language that comes from and reinforces the normalcy of that oppression, and learning to act against it is a long and difficult process.

These have blended together and for the life of me I cannot tell them apart.

All you have to do is ask ;D

impossible.

Noone will ever actively admit to doing something wrong in vivo. Hindsight, perhaps, but never actively.


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Tirisfal wrote:
BigNorseWolf wrote:
Tirisfal wrote:

I find it interesting that I've only heard cis folks use the phrase "cis scum".

We simply say we don't trust cis people, and that gets recentered by cisfeelings about how wronged they are, rather than asking us what it is that makes us not trust you.

Well, yes. Because you are wronging the individual.

When you take any individual who probably has done nothing wrong and blame them for the failings of a group as unspecific as 99+% of the planet that's some pretty serious discrimination. Replace cis with any minority and read it again.

I'm saying that the phrase "cis scum" is one I hear a lot and it is a false insult that doesn't exist in our circles. Cis folks made it up to make themselves feel like victims because cis folks are not anywhere near as marginalized as trans folks and they have to make it about themselves...every time.

Trans folks are 100% incapable of discriminating against cis people...discrimination is a institutional system that requires us to have social power over you.

Cis folks always use "cis scum" as a way to show that "you're prejudice against us! cis is an insult" and I'm like..."I've never used those two words together...? I just don't trust y'all and making things all about you like you are now is one of the reasons"

Cis people murder us. Cis people discriminate against us in the workplace. Cis people don't recognize our existence half the time.

Saying that I don't trust you isn't discrimination, its a learned behavior.

I must disagree. Anyone can be a bigot, regardless of who they are or how they present or where they stand in society. It is an insidious and active thing, not a by product of experiences.


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Freehold DM wrote:
Tirisfal wrote:
BigNorseWolf wrote:
Tirisfal wrote:

I find it interesting that I've only heard cis folks use the phrase "cis scum".

We simply say we don't trust cis people, and that gets recentered by cisfeelings about how wronged they are, rather than asking us what it is that makes us not trust you.

Well, yes. Because you are wronging the individual.

When you take any individual who probably has done nothing wrong and blame them for the failings of a group as unspecific as 99+% of the planet that's some pretty serious discrimination. Replace cis with any minority and read it again.

I'm saying that the phrase "cis scum" is one I hear a lot and it is a false insult that doesn't exist in our circles. Cis folks made it up to make themselves feel like victims because cis folks are not anywhere near as marginalized as trans folks and they have to make it about themselves...every time.

Trans folks are 100% incapable of discriminating against cis people...discrimination is a institutional system that requires us to have social power over you.

Cis folks always use "cis scum" as a way to show that "you're prejudice against us! cis is an insult" and I'm like..."I've never used those two words together...? I just don't trust y'all and making things all about you like you are now is one of the reasons"

Cis people murder us. Cis people discriminate against us in the workplace. Cis people don't recognize our existence half the time.

Saying that I don't trust you isn't discrimination, its a learned behavior.

I must disagree. Anyone can be a bigot, regardless of who they are or how they present or where they stand in society. It is an insidious and active thing, not a by product of experiences.

"prejudice" and "bigotry" are very different things.

I prejudge cis folks to disappoint me or hurt me because its a defensive action to do so.

I am not bigoted towards cis people because I'm not intolerant toward you for holding a different opinions. I just don't trust you.

Marginalized folks are allowed to not trust their oppressors.

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