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While We Wait: Writer's Block & Other Lame Excuses

Discussion in 'Never Ending Stories' started by Nylan, Dec 24, 2011.

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  1. Crezth

    Crezth 話說天下大勢分久必合合久必分

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    I didn't call you stupid, I just don't believe you've really thought about the show. You responded to my initial and frankly somewhat pithy comment with such an annoyed tone that it suggested to me you were more willing to disagree than discuss.
     
  2. Thlayli

    Thlayli Le Pétit Prince

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    That annoyance definitely stems from the (strangely masochistic) white liberal male tendency to blame the world's problems, or at least society's, on white males. It's part of a guilt-expiation pathway that I think a lot of people find emotionally cleansing, rather than actually doing anything constructive to fix the so-called problem. Of course, it also denies agency to non-whites, since their station entirely rests on the invisible oppression of white people constantly bearing down on them, something I view to be a little bit hysterical in this day and age, and unfair, since it basically denies non-whites equality for the sake of perpetuating the race narrative of a previous century.

    It's utterly epitomized by Gretchen and Elliott, whose lifestyle (the epitome of enlightened liberal capitalism) you failed to engage with in your previous analysis. In their funding of a meth treatment center, they act out of guilt and the desire to undo the catastrophic life choices of their former business/science partner, but their actions won't do a whit of good in stopping the drug war. We all know that. It's a PR stunt, made for image-crafting and self-justification.

    Which is the same way I view your blithe comments, then hastily covered by a veneer of "oh look at how much I know about Breaking Bad." Hence my annoyance.
     
  3. Lord of Elves

    Lord of Elves Suede-Denim Secret Police

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    Cultural appropriation of "misogynistic rap music," or whatever the right term for both is can definitely be argued. Regardless, opinion doesn't at all seem divided that when raps must be rapped the consumers prefer them to be rapped by African-American men with bonafide "urban youth" street cred. This is how the consumers of rap music prefer to see their artists and it's how detractors of rap music prefer to see its producers. Somethingsomething reduction of black men to animal characteristics somethingsomething school-to-prison pipeline. Some social justice warriors will even tell you that white rappers are "problematic," because somethingsomething cultural appropriation. Point being, while the largest consumers of rap music are in-arguably Sperry-wearing WASP youths (*gagging noises*), the majority of Americans continue to associate rap music with the black community.

    Whatever. As spryllino points out, my intention is not to lay blame for the issues of women at the feet of racial minorities. I'm arguing that the addition of "white" to complaints about treatment of women is superfluous. Sexual violence is sexual violence, not racial violence, and the insistence on blaming misogyny on white men exclusively leads to an odd kind of double standard where the problems faced by women of color can be ignored or downplayed because the oft-maligned Young Black Male can't or shouldn't be held to the same standard, either because social justice types feel uncomfortable criticizing sexual violence among non-whites because they feel it isn't their place, or because in their hearts they don't really believe minority groups are capable of getting in on "women's lib," and that sexual violence among non-whites is some kind of quaint, kitsch tradition that we must protect.

    It's a shame this forum is such a sausagefest because I've read before that this is an issue taken very seriously by black and Hispanic feminists.
     
  4. m.t.cicero

    m.t.cicero Good Kid

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    iT ME! (◕‿◕)
     
  5. Azale

    Azale Chieftain

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    rap is great, fite me about it
     
  6. Lord of Elves

    Lord of Elves Suede-Denim Secret Police

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    Preps go back to New Jersey :o
     
  7. Luckymoose

    Luckymoose The World is Mine

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    The largest consumers of rap are people who enjoy rap.
     
  8. m.t.cicero

    m.t.cicero Good Kid

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    PLEASE, I'm a shameless M*sshole. And don't hate just because I'm embracing the zeitgeist.
     
  9. m.t.cicero

    m.t.cicero Good Kid

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    Serious answer (okay well the last one was serious but just not grammatically correct) is that while yes, minority groups each face their own specific issues of sexism, the fact remains that white men hold the most positions of power and thus perpetuate the vast majority of sexism. It should also be rather obvious that while women in racial minorities suffer from sexism at the hands of men in racial minorities, they also suffer from sexism from white men in addition to racism (not to mention beautiful combinations of the two such as exoticization).

    EDIT: Basically what I'm saying is that you can't blame people for saying stuff like that. I mean I don't personally know if I'd put it exactly as they would, but they're certainly entitled to say it.

    And yes I suffer terribly from white guilt I practice flagellation myself every day and the burden of the guilt over what my ancestors did prevents me from getting out of bed some days :sad: (EDIT 2: First couple paragraphs of Crezth's post below actually portrays fairly accurately how I feel though)
     
  10. Crezth

    Crezth 話說天下大勢分久必合合久必分

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    Well, no, I think you're unfairly characterizing the narrative. The argument is not that there's nothing people can do about it, and "oh isn't it a shame that blacks are helplessly victimized," but it stems from older philosophical critiques than that. Take Marxism, for example. It is an error, albeit a very popular one in the American middle class myth, to insist that class warfare is irrelevant because anybody can rise up. "People aren't helpless!" they cry. Well, that's just not true. Individuals aren't helpless, but people are. People are the victims of massive forces they do not understand. Not merely racism and sexism, but economics, politics, and the natural world. There are large forces outside of the control of people that individuals can nevertheless defy. Now, whether this qualifies as a breach of justice, or is merely a condition of life, I won't comment on - but when people say that white male guilty liberals just want someone to feel sorry for... well, maybe it's true. I've been accused of it before and I still don't know if there's some truth to it. Do I actually believe in social justice because it's right, or because I want to be seen as right? Am I, in my own way, perpetrating injustice? This thought keeps me up at night.

    However, in no way should that be taken as a rejection of the principles of social justice. I think that if women and minorities talk, as often (enough) they do, about the issues that are important to them - equal pay, abortion, racial profiling - it behooves someone such as me, who is not privy to those particular disadvantages, to listen, and think about it in the context of a wider society. The actual policies to be implemented to fix these things is, I think, not as important as the central idea of shutting up and listening to people talk about their problems.

    Yeah, this is a good point. Also their insistence that Walter White wasn't truly involved in their business venture. It's pretty much the epitome of ivory tower ho-hum liberalizm. I think, in a way, that is altogether more dangerous to the efforts of the true believers - a false friend being more dangerous than a known enemy - but that is a different discussion.

    Fair enough.
     
  11. Thlayli

    Thlayli Le Pétit Prince

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    Most of my ancestors were white. Probably an occasional Arab back in the day. Most of these ancestors were oppressed as sh*t, living in conditions comparable to slavery, and/or wretched poverty, for centuries. Obviously, I also had ancestors who were wealthy, but given the way that land and population distribution worked out over the last 6 millennia, this is bound to be a serious minority of the total number of ancestors that contributed to my DNA.

    Most of them were slaves or near-slaves, and most of them were white.

    Why is their whiteness relevant, rather than their status in society? The answer is, it's not, we just have this peculiar hangup over skin color because of the specific events of the last 500 years. It's a socially constructed taboo, and one that needs to be philosophically broken down in order to move beyond racism. Even a "these different-looking people need to be treated better because in the past they were treated badly" sentiment is racism. It's benevolent racism, but it is still racism. Talking about race serves to reinforce it, and as long as racial categories are regarded as legitimate (as opposed to cultural denominations that don't pose any sort of serious barrier outside of heritage flavor; i.e. Irish and Italian Americans) we will continue to struggle.

    I mean, if we go back to Neolithic times, our ancestors were probably the most successful murderers and aggressors mating with the most attractive and/or socially dominant females. We're all equally complicit.

    Does this mean that we should stop helping people who need help? Of course not. But is a race-patronization narrative helpful? I don't think so either.
     
  12. Luckymoose

    Luckymoose The World is Mine

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  13. Crezth

    Crezth 話說天下大勢分久必合合久必分

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    Look, I know that racism in the modern sense is, well, modern - but the society we live in now exists in the context of a society that has progenated this "peculiar hangup."

    It sounds like you're saying the only reason we still talk about racism is because we're still talking about racism, which would, of course, make the liberal agenda a circular self-reinforcing thing - but the argument then being "racism only exists because we won't shut up about it" strikes as rather shutter-blinding. But smarter, better people than I have discussed at length how and why racism still exists today, and not merely in the patronizing sense, so it's unlikely I'll be able to make a more convincing argument than them.

    Anyway, on the whole I couldn't agree more. Ultimately, what separates people is power - class. So it's good to have you aboard, comrade. :)
     
  14. Wrymouth3

    Wrymouth3 Chieftain

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    I had no idea you were such a big fan of solipsism.
     
  15. Thlayli

    Thlayli Le Pétit Prince

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    I'd argue the opposite. I'm a big fan of spiritual equality before the eyes of the divine, so I don't think there are any innately relevant separating categories.
     
  16. Crezth

    Crezth 話說天下大勢分久必合合久必分

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    Nothing innate but the divine isn't necessary for that. We are all but stardust in the unseeing eyes of the universe.
     
  17. North King

    North King blech

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    If racism weren't alive and well, why aren't there more black head coaches in the NFL?

    That might seem like a spurious question. It's not. Who has expertise in football? Presumably, football-playing athletes. Football players are, overwhelmingly, African-American, and while I wouldn't buy it, I could see why you would think that's not a racial thing (football players draw overwhelmingly from poor people, poor people are historically black, ergo it has less to do with present racism and more to do with historical racism). Presumably, former players have a great deal of football knowledge (the ones whose brains aren't turned to sludge). So why are there only 3 black head coaches vs. 29 white head coaches? You might argue that's a remnant of a bygone era, except there's a lot of turnover in NFL head coaching. More to the point, of the something like 15 new HC hires in the past two years, only one of them was black.

    Athletics is one of the sectors in which we would expect a post-racial society, or a society transitioning to a post-racial society, to equalize most quickly -- since they are driven by present-oriented, money-grubbing owners who desire absolutely nothing more than to win now or put butts in seats. If all else was equal, they'd put the best bodies in what positions they could. So why are the overwhelming majority of players in the NFL and NBA black, and the overwhelming majority of coaches and owners in those leagues white?
     
  18. Thlayli

    Thlayli Le Pétit Prince

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    I'm not sure if that point necessarily imputes racism in any particular direction. I mean, you could just as easily argue it's racist towards white NFL players than black NFL coaches. "But no," you reply, "black athletes just happen to be better because of their skills in a meritocratic system," at which point you awkwardly examine what you just said.

    More black coaches, more white athletes. Or you have a racism problem.
     
  19. North King

    North King blech

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    We do have a racism problem. I'm glad you noticed!

    It helps that I pointed it out myself there.

    :p
     
  20. Thlayli

    Thlayli Le Pétit Prince

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    I'm not convinced yet. I mean, is it a racism problem that Usain Bolt can run faster than a white guy because of his physiology?
     
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