Tag Archives: society

I hate “one bad apple” politics


I should probably elaborate on what this means:

This is a term I’ve devised for the mentality, mostly found in right-wing politics, in which the existence of one person abusing a thing in ways that cause very little harm is proof that that thing should be banned.

You see it in the assertion that boat people are the biggest threat to Australian security, even though the 15,800 refugees to arrive in the past year are outnumbered approximately 2000 to 1 and 85% of them are legitimate refugees anyway according to the UN.

You see it in the idea that the (fictitious) existence of “welfare scroungers” in the US means that the entire welfare system should be shut down and screw the people who are dependent on it to scratch a precarious living.

Oddly enough, usually the main field you don’t see it in is gun rights, in which the people who misuse them – usually in ways that cost multiple lives – are brushed under the carpet and dismissed as fringe nutjobs so that the people speaking can keep their firearms. Weird. You’d think that consistency would at least obligate them to apply this to everything – people text while driving? Ban both cars and mobile phones! That kind of thing.

All I will say is that “it is better that ten guilty men go free than one innocent be punished”.

– OSM out

 

(Worse than WBTC will come eventually! I just think I’ve been trapped in the Valve-Time Continuum.)

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Tumblr social justice II: tumblr feminism


WARNING: This post is probably going to offend some people. Don’t care. That’s their problem.

“Why do people think a belief in women equals a hatred of men?” – Wonder Woman

Feminism is a political and philosophical movement dedicated to establishing and defending equal rights for women. It has a rich intellectual heritage and has achieved great things during its history. It deserves support from everyone with a conscience or sense of perspective. I just want to make this clear at the beginning: I’m not anti-feminism. I’m pro-feminism. I think all people should have the chance to live and work and chase their dreams regardless of sex, gender, colour, creed or sexual orientation.

Large chunks of tumblr quote-unquote “feminism” is not feminism. It more closely resembles the ludicrous straw feminism you see in Frank Miller comics. Its “intellectual heritage” largely consists of “feminazi” characters from bad 80s TV shows, and its primary achievement is to be posted on tumblr, an all-devouring maw of stupid exaggerations. It is concrete proof that he, or she, who fights sexist douchebags, should be careful to not in turn become a sexist douchebag.

I want to quote you something. I’m not going to identify the source; unless it’s Ayn Rand, I don’t believe in idiot shaming. (The second thing mentioned, I have to admit, is actually relevant, coherent and sane…which makes the first thing mentioned just that much more disappointing.)

“The myth that the vagina is tighter when you’re a virgin is caused by 2 things

1) cis men love the idea of “ruining” a woman’s body  (as shown by porn) and they get some sort of sick pleasure from thinking that after having sex with a woman, she will never be the same again.”

Speaking as a cisgendered* male: I’m so grateful you decided to make a group attack against my entire gender in the middle of something that could otherwise have been entirely useful and informative. I really needed you to declare me to be a sociopathic monster on the foolproof grounds that I was born with external genitalia. That massively improved my day. It’s not hypocritical at all that you’re decreeing an entire gender to be inferior.

That’s the thing: feminism, real feminism, is about equality. It’s about preventing discrimination against women. It’s not about establishing discrimination against men. It’s about fighting sexism, not about being sexist in the opposite direction. Equal means equal.

– OSM out

*”Cisgendered”, or “cis” for short, means “not transgendered”. Outside of tumblr, it is a value-neutral statement; in the hands of idiots, as seen above, it is a foolproof barometer of moral inferiority.

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Today’s challenge: punch a Youtube commenter


First things first: I’m not going to name names. I’m going to mention a Youtube video and you can track it down and figure out the name yourself.

Second things second: I’m sorry this is nearly two days late, but I forgot. Then I found this moron and decided it merited a reply.

So I watched a Youtube video depicting President Bartlett from The West Wing chewing out a homophobe by quoting the more bizarre, disproportionate, almost insane laws found within the books of Exodus and Leviticus. And then I read the comments.

Yes, you’d think I’d have learned by now not to do that. No, I haven’t. Hopefully with some therapy I will recover.

As you would expect, given that this clip involves the idea that LGBTQ people might actually be human and deserve consideration*, there was one loud, ethically myopic, arrogant, stupid bigot who, by his** very existence, makes the human race slightly less worthy of survival. He made a lot of bad points and I think a few of them need to be addressed.

Point 1: “Opposition to Gay Marriage Isn’t Hate”

Yes it is.

I mean, let’s think about this. You’re denying someone the right to equality under the law. That’s hate. That is categorically a hateful act. There is no way to formulate “[group] should not be considered equal under the law” that does not boil down to “the law should hate [group]”.

Okay, it’s theoretically possible you’re not motivated by hate***. That actually makes it worse. That means you don’t even have the excuse that you were blinded by strong emotion. That means you are calmly engaging in a premeditated betrayal of all that is good in humanity. You are, without the slightest qualm of conscience, discarding empathy for a group simply because you do not belong to it****. That’s a terrible thing to do and a terrible person to be.

So you might not be a bigot. You might just be a sociopath. I don’t consider that a point in your favour.

Point 2: “Why don’t you tolerate my intolerance?*****”

There’s an old saying. “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” Since you are agitating for a policy of uncloaked spite towards a certain subset of the population, I think it would be fair if “we”, that is to say the left, showed you what that felt like.

Except that wait. We’re not. We haven’t driven your family to shun you; we haven’t fired you from your job; we haven’t demanded bans on straight marriage, oaths of atheism, or posting the Laws of Thermodynamics in public places. The degree of intolerance you are shown largely consists of a) people disagreeing with you, b) people calling you on your prejudice, and c) people not permitting you to wield unchecked legislative power in the name of that prejudice.

As a result, I suppose it makes sense that you have no sense of proportion. It makes sense that you have such a loose definition of disenfranchisement and prejudice, since you’ve never been on the receiving end. It makes sense that you’re afraid of the Other, because you’ve never associated with it.

It makes sense that you are all of these terrible terrible things. It just doesn’t make sense that you seem to think this is a good state to be in.

Point 3: “Most LBGTQ people are hateful bigots!”

Um, no, that’s not even slightly true. You are in fact thinking of the voices in your head. Most LBGTQ people are like most other people – they’re calm, sensible, reasonable people. This is true of virtually every group except “extremist wingnuts”.

Frankly, I’m amazed more LBGTQ people aren’t outspoken heterophobes. Given the quantity of crap they have to deal with, mainly thanks to people who agree with your nonsensical, bigoted, incoherent rants, it’s astonishing how few gays and lesbians succumb to “he who fights monsters”.

Of course there are a few outspoken loons. There are outspoken loons in every ideology. In fact, your own form of religiously annotated homophobia has produced rather a lot of them******. I’m pretty sure that makes you a hypocrite – “the more out-there of your side discredit the whole thing! …Please ignore the more out-there of my side.”

Point 4: “Marriage is not a right.”

Actually, it kind of is.

Have you perhaps heard of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, from the UN? Article 16 states that “Men and women of full age, without any limitation due to race, nationality or religion, have the right to marry and to found a family.” It does not specify that the men and women have to marry each other.

Plus, Article 7 states that all are equal before the law.

Meaning that yes, marriage actually is a right. More to the point, gay marriage is also a right, since if you can only legally marry the one you love if that person happens to be the other sex, that’s inequality under the law.

 

Anyway, I apologise for trying to address actual significant issues rather than ranting about cheese or theodicy for 800 words. Normal service should be resumed on Monday.

– OSM out

 

* That this is in any way a contentious stance makes me despair just a little bit.

** I’m assuming this person is male because their username contains a male first name.

*** Although given that the comments in question are heavy on capitals and short on logical argument, I doubt it somehow.

**** Or, in some cases, because you are a member of that group and have no idea how to constructively deal with it, leading to a tragic spiral of self-loathing that culminates in you being caught in flagrante delicto with a male prostitute and yet somehow remaining in denial.

***** Phrased rather more clumsily and stupidly in the fantastically dumb posts I’m reading, but honestly, this is the most well-known formulation so let’s go with this.

****** Insert a cough, then your preferred right-wing loudmouth, then another cough here.

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