Discussion in 'Community' started by Heero_Yuy, May 29, 2014.
Believe me, I know.
I'm going to assume you're joking.
I was going to say earlier that I agreed with pretty much everything in @Rogue1-and-a-half's post except for the bit about suggesting suicide. That's just not nice.
you can infer the suicide point in most of my posts
Once again, I very specifically do not recommend firing the gun.
So, near-life experience to renew the spirit, aka the "Tyler Durden" method?
I still don't understand that ending.
I only understand that I still want it to happen in real life. Boom. All that destruction, no lives lost, freedom from the chains of the soulless Credit Score machine. And before the question comes, I actually have an excellent credit score (and zero credit cards). I just don't care about it.
Anyone see Twitter? Apparently there's a woman who accused Devin Faraci of sexual assault.
Wait Faraci is a hypocrite, how could that be.
Okay, I'm going to try this out in this thread here, even though I'm not 100% sure it fits. The other day I asked my dad (who is a political junkie) why people liked Republicans so much. He had multiple answers, but the one I'm interested in addressing here is the idea that there are many men (esp. white men) who feel dispossessed and cheated by the world. He thinks that men are becoming less and less integral to modern society, and that some guys want to hit back in revenge for having their "birthright" stolen. In no way was he saying that they're right for feeling this way--just that they do. My dad is 70 years old, so the future world that he was promised as a child is very different from the one we actually have. I get that. However, I'm not totally sold on the idea that people born 40 or 30 or 20 years ago feel that the world made them the same promise, and experience the same sense of betrayal.
What is your experience? Do you think that guys of all ages are enraged at having an Ozzy and Harriet life "stolen" from them, or is this more a Boomer thing? Could it be a regional thing? Did Ozzy and Harriet hang on longer in some areas than others?
White male entitlement is a huge problem today. I've been thinking about this a lot of late. The world revolved around us for centuries, though of course that was dependent on gunpoint and other forces necessary to initially create that status quo and then maintain it. It's like we've been at the head of the line for hundreds of years, sometimes the only people eligible to be in line at all, and now we're joined by a lot of folks who don't necessarily look and sound much like we are. This is happening at the same time as diminishing opportunities for white men, and as the world increasingly looks different than it did in the past (though the past is somewhat of an imagined place for a lot of white men).
Grievance politics frequently work in large part because of that sense of entitlement and anger, which is also true for whites in general (i.e. women). Not all white men and women... but a lot.
For a lot of whites, to see the world changing in ways you dislike and disagree with while at the same time your own opportunities are few and far between (at least those on what you perceive to be your own terms) is enraging.
Wealthier people vote Republican because it serves their interests. It's that simple.
If we're talking about working-class or so-called (lower-)middle-class voters, then I would hardly call their resentments just "white male entitlement." Is it "entitlement" to expect a job with decent pay, healthcare, and a decent retirement? To not watch one's children and grandchildren struggle to find good jobs much more than one's own generation at their age? The GOP has terrible answers for these problems, blaming them on immigrants and foreign countries and minorities and promising that if the rich make more money, the people at the bottom will too! It's wrong to go along with this, but our culture has fostered bigotry and ignorance in order to weaken the working class for generations. We can't expect it to disappear overnight and especially not while the same powerful people and institutions are still stoking hatred to serve their own ends. The bigger problem is, the Democrats don't really have an answer to people's woes either because it would require fundamentally questioning our global economic system.
Shortly after Trump was elected, I had a conversation with my mother about why she thought he won (she didn't vote for him, wasn't going to- she never got a chance to vote at all, as she had recently moved into the state she's in and there was a registration mix-up). She said that she thought white people felt like they were being forgotten, with minorities getting more and more attention. Her concern in particular was focused on aging white people, and what slice of pie they were going to get as they, baby boomers, headed into old age, and the worry over whether or not they would be able to take care of themselves or not. This is coming from someone who considers herself socially liberal. She also went on to reassure me that everything was going to be fine, like I was 12 years old or something. I think if we had a conversation now, I'd probably ask her if she still thought that, with Mr. Gorsuch on the Supreme Court, Pence a very possible 25th Amendment away or Special Prosecutor's recommendation away from the presidency, and all these rumors about Jared and Ivanka being the only one stopping her dad from rolling back gay rights.
Her elder sister, my aunt, is a completely different story. She was a hippie who gave birth to and raised her first child in a tent in the woods. She supported Bernie in the primaries and then gave a "burn the whole system down" vote to Trump. Woman doesn't **** around.
I don't think it's entitled to want those things you listed, Evan, but I think it is entitlement when you expect to be handed those things, and frequently at the expense of other segments of society (i.e. people of color, or even just women at times). I also have serious issues with anyone who would portray the struggles of the white working class without also devoting time to the difficulties that people of color have had for centuries in securing those same things. I can see a certain person or two writing about how that doesn't make it any easier for them. It's true that it doesn't, but I still don't have any patience for the omissions.
Of course, the Republican Party and those within it bear a tremendous amount of responsibility for stoking racial resentment for their own ends (as you alluded to, Evan). It didn't have to be this way.
I think it becomes entitlement for those who attempt to turn it into a zero sum game, or more so than it already has to be. That includes resentment toward those in society who are both successful and not white men and are successful in fields and areas that were once almost exclusively the domain of white men. Whiteness is still looked at as "normal" or "neutral" by countless people (not just white men), and this is a major contributing factor. This fuels a sense of entitlement. When you believe yourself to be "normal," and others to be "different" or just part of "the other" in society, it excuses a lot (in terms of self-perception).
I definitely think it's an older guys thing, and not just in the US. Just yesterday I was in a discussion with two local cartoonists about a depiction in a popular Belgian comic of an African's lips. All the usual arguments were trotted out, about why you should be able to depict an African with lips that stretch over their chin. "Comics are caricature, this is nothing out of the ordinary". "We also draw white guys exaggeratedly". "This is just one guy". "Africans do have larger lips". "PC is everywhere these days".
The real reason for their stance was of course: "Why does so much that we know from our youth have to be axed? I feel like I'm losing my identity."
I think it would be more complete would be to note that in their youth, it was more acceptable to make comments through a variety of means without much in the way of consequence (which again goes back in part to believing that whiteness is "normal," and likewise for women needing to fit certain parameters, or else).
We've seen it here. People have made posts that amount to this: "Why am I not allowed to say derogatory things without worrying about what people will say about me?" I think that's true across a large range of ages, though. If you look at Gamergate, a lot of those men were very young and saying more or less the same thing.
I agree that this is rape, and it should not be popularly promoted this way.
I disagree, however, that simply being a "nerd" means never getting women, etc.
I knew a guy at school, back in Russia, who was what you'd call a "nerd", "geek", etc.
Sat around in the computer room, while the rest of us partied at the disco hall lol Never really went out with the girls. He was a funny dude though, in a good way. Always knew how to tell a good joke. And always loved computers.
Well, he went on to pursue his dream. Opened his own business, some sort of internet media company. And his video blog is viral, one of the most popular in the Russian speaking world. Dude became a bloody celebrity!
He's even appeared in comedy shows on national TV!
He rides a frigging scooter around his offices now
which, btw is on, like, 100th floor of a skyscraper in the Moskva City business centre. God knows how he scored that, office space prices there are insane...
He also owns all three of these cars
And this bike
And he certainly has no problem at all with the females. I'd post some of his girlfriends on here, but all the pics he puts on his Instagram and VKontakte are waaaaaaaaaay too sexy for this site lol
But, here he is with Yana Koshkina, Russian TV actress and his current, I believe
Brother is living the life And those who made fun of him and picked on him back then, at school, now come begging him to loan some money haha
Point is, if you are a "nerd", don't be discouraged by it. Be proud of it. Don;t give up on whatever you are good at it, computers or whatnot. Turn it into a passion and a career. And, when you are rich, you'll have everything you want
Pretty sure no one is looking to Revenge of the Nerds for accurate social commentary.
Yeah so I would agree there is a reaction about men's role as the centre of a universe diminishing, poor yorick. For sure. I think part of what people like about Republicans though stems from fear of change. I would suggest ignoring the points raised by Darth Guy entirely, since we know the GOP have traction across economic classes.
It boils down towards our being a period of massive social upheaval. Capitalism was morphed into something wretched by the US, a system that enables wealth creation at the top but doesn't encourage mobility or protect the weak. The "recovery" from 2008, which should damn Obama in history, has been immodest at best and left so many behind as to be at this point, cruel. The positive from this is that those previously without a voice have platforms for their voice and can address injustice as they see it. They are demanding change, which means people who prefer the stability of a rose-tinted past that arguably never existed will gravitate towards those who promise a return to the stability of said rose tinted past.
The last time the world faced upheaval and change, it embraced pisspoor choices like communism and fascism as "solutions", damning generations to squalor, inequality, and oppression. It also meant the old Western European imperial order was challenged and collapsed. If we can avoid the mistakes of fascism and communism, which in slightly less militant forms are ascendant ideologically, we can still challenge older dominant paradigms and their roles - meaning, yes, white hetero males may not be the epicentre of all life as we know it.
Hence why imbeciles invent terms like "white genocide".
I can't speak for all Republicans or conservatives, just my own experience, since we're a pretty diverse bunch. There's establishment, big government Republicans. Nationalist Populists like Trump. And Constitutional Conservatives, like myself. I believe in the principles America was founded on. Freedom, equality and independence. The American Dream that if you believe in this philosophy, anyone can come here, work hard and succeed. All people haven't always had the same rights, but the country has granted those rights as circumstances changed. There's a lot about America & Americans that I don't like. There's too much focus on the individual, and the individual's needs over what's best for society. Personally, I think its that cultural narcissism that's more to blame for some of our problems than capitalism.
I believe in intellectual honesty. If I see bad behavior from a Republican, I'm going to call them on it just as I'd do the same thing if a Democrat said or did the exact same thing. I'm not loyal to any person or personality, because all people are flawed. I believe in a particular ideology, and I'll follow whoever embodies that. And I'll call them out if they say or do something that I disagree with.
I was raised to believe in basic morality. There is right and wrong. Don't steal, cheat, kill, commit adultery, lie etc. Leadership and power are inherently corrupting forces, which is why our leaders must have impeccable character. And in this past election, both major party candidates completely failed that basic test. No, I won't vote for a corrupt, criminal who intimidates sexual abuse survivors. No, I won't vote for a misogynistic con man. You have to be a decent human being to have my support.
There is such a thing as truth and facts, and they matter. We can disagree on how to interpret those facts, or how to act on them. But if we don't agree what the facts even are, then how can we possibly work together? There are immutable scientific facts which can't be changed, certain basic laws to the universe, and no amount of wishing can change that. Reality can be harsh, but I won't delude myself into believing comforting lies.
Personally, I have tremendous problems with intersectionality. The idea that you can't possibly understand another person if you don't have the same skin color, religion, sex or culture as that person. By any other name, that's tribalism. Tribalism has been a tremendous source of human suffering, and it can destroy civilization. We're all human beings, and I believe we must see our shared humanity if there's to be any progress. What we share must be stronger than what divides us.
Basically, I believe that government only exists to protect us from externalities. Its up to us to have a culture that fosters a sense of caring, community and responsibility to our fellow citizens. We have a duty and obligation to provide for people who are chronically ill or mentally ill and cannot work. Likewise for veterans. If you are healthy, then you should work to give back to society. I've been severely ill for a very, very long time. The worst parts of the whole thing weren't when I could barely eat or walk. It was when I couldn't think clearly enough to work. We need purpose in life, and work can do that.
Personal responsibility is huge too. Its not government's job to make up for bad decisions you yourself made. Its really easy to escape poverty. Graduate high school, get married before having kids, and hold down a job. Single motherhood is the single greatest predictor of intergenerational poverty, regardless of race. All according to the Brookings Institute.
I live in a pretty poor, rural, majority white area. And most here are Republicans. They want to be able to work and make their own way without excessive government interference.
My grandparents immigrated to this country with absolutely nothing, and they were able to do quite well for themselves through hard work. And they never lived beyond their means. Part of the biggest issue facing Americans today, as far as economic mobility, are overbearing regulations. Its hard enough to run a business without also having the government getting in your way. We're trying to contribute to society, but it sure isn't easy these days. And part of the duty and obligation that everyone has, but particularly people who are successful, is to give back. Whether through charity or work.
My father holds pretty much the same views. If anything, I'm more conservative than he is. I do know that he believes it part of his job, as a man, to protect his family. As government has encroached on private citizens and culture has shifted, this has been emasculating for a lot of men. I kinda miss the feminism I grew up with, not that long ago, where it was about women & men being equal and having the same freedom to live the life they chose. No matter what form that is in. The modern female supremacist movement really is quite damaging and it needs to change, since its hurting both men & women.
Personally, I find conservative ideology much more empowering than anything modern liberals have to say. I have the ability to make my own choices, and bear out the consequences of those choices. Its up to me. I have that freedom & power. I'm a woman. I'm non-white. I'm a conservative & classical liberal. I'm also an ex-Democrat, since I found that ideology to be incredibly toxic & damaging to everyone.
I can agree with much of what you said and think you articulated your position well. But...
But what happens when your company downsizes or goes overseas and you lose your job, while at the same time some politicians want to cut benefits because "only the lazy" avail themselves of it?
When you have a major medical event and have to declare bankruptcy (especially pre-"Obama-care")?
My paternal grandfather as well. Never "rich" or even "well off" but well-enough off. But opportunities are far different now! Post-WWII economy boomed - the middle class grew. Decent paying jobs with good pensions and benefits were more prevalent than now - my parents were both blue-collar, I suppose, but while they did sometimes live paycheck to paycheck, they did ok. Of course, dad died before retiring, and Mom's pension went bankrupt so she gets less than she earned through the state guarantee fund.
My mother has thrown out on occasion that young adults are no longer willing to start out in a starter home and work up. I remind her basic, simple homes were thrown up in the 40's and 50's and were affordable. For my generation, in my area, older, basic homes need work and in the end would cost as much as a newer McMansion type home - they don't build starter homes anymore. I'll never own a home for that reason, unless I purchase a winning lottery ticket. (I do agree regulations contribute to the dearth of economical homes.)
Oh, come on. Any and all movements have extremists, of course, but to totally dismiss modern feminism as a supremacist movement is disingenuous. I don't quite agree with some of the views *some* feminists express, but the movement in whole is aimed at leveling the playing field.
Thanks for your post, Jedi_Jade-Skywalker. Not too many people identify as Republicans here. I agree with many of your points, such as a need for intellectual honesty from politicians, and the requirement of having a basic shared understanding of "truth" before you can have political discourse. However, I don't think it's remotely easy to escape from poverty, especially if you're the first generation in your family to do so. You mention that many of your neighbors are poor, even though they want to support themselves. What's holding them back? Did they fail to follow your simple checklist? Or is it something else?
Also, intersectionality isn't the same thing as tribalism. "Intersectionality" is the idea that if you're going to support one oppressed group, you have to support them all. I.e., if you're going to be a feminist, you also have to support the African-American community, because some women are African-American. It's sort of a synonym for "solidarity," and the opposite of "tribalism."
To avoid wandering too far from the thread's topic--how do you feel about society's changing expectations for men? You mentioned that manhood meant something different in your father's youth--is that a good thing? A bad thing? How does that play out politically for you?
I agree with pretty much everything you have said here.
That's not really what intersectionality is.
I'm a white middle class woman, and therefore I do not have any way of understanding from personal experience what it is like to grow up as African American, Latino, Native American, etc. I was born in the United States, so I do not have a way of understanding from personal experience what it is like to be an immigrant.
That's not to say that we can't share some basic human trait or other experiences, but I cannot pretend that I know exactly what someone else's unique experience is like. What I can do is listen.
What many people do is try to explain to someone else what it is like to walk in that someone else's shoes. That is condescending. "I know your experience better than you do." I don't think that's what you are trying to do here but that happens a lot.
I agree, but that's an ideal, and we have proven as a country that withdrawing the social safety net will not make that happen. (And no, we do not have a social safety net.)
In a country in which someone making minimum wage cannot afford rent on an apartment in most cities, it is not easy to escape poverty. It is also not easy for someone who has grown up in several generations of poverty to escape a defeatist mindset. It's certainly not impossible, but "pull up your bootstraps you lazy bum" does not do the trick either.
Again I am not saying you are doing this, but the mindset of many in the GOP is that poor people are lazy. It is no more fair to characterize all poor people as lazy than it is to characterize all wealthy people as greedy.
I think some women who call themselves feminists take positions that I disagree with, but only the most extreme, and rare, take a "female supremacist" position. I am a card-carrying member of NOW and have literally never heard of anyone in the organization declare that "men are inferior and women need supremacy over them."
Referring to "emasculation" of men, however, seems to refer to a default position in which men have power over women, and mourn that position. And referring to a man "needing to protect his family" gives no allowance to those of us who feel insulted by those who believe that we are weak and need protection by a man simply because we are women.
Why can't a woman protect her family? Why can't we work at protecting ourselves without the condescending position that we "need protection"?
I believe that if there is going to be a draft, both women and men need to be subjected to it (but I don't believe in the draft at all), and I believe men and women should have equal opportunity in custody cases. I also believe that men should be innocent until proven guilty in situations in which they are accused of rape (but the evidence should come from whether the woman has been determined to be a liar in the past, not whether she was drinking or wearing a short skirt).
But if we could stop with the mentality that "men are strong, women are weak" or with the idea that gender equality means "female supremacy" or "emasculating men," that would be great.
BTW, I am the owner of a starter home (paid for in another year), and am one of few white people in my neighborhood. My neighborhood is mostly homeowners; the ones that are renters, tend to stay around for several years and take care of the property. Nobody is on public assistance; I think maybe one or two houses in the neighborhood have accepted section 8 vouchers at any time in the past ten years. As far as I can tell, everyone has a full-time job, because no one is home during the day on the days that I am home. My congressional district went 85 percent for Clinton last year. None of the men in my neighborhood complain about being "emasculated," make sexist comments towards women, cat-call me, or take any issue whatsoever with the fact that I am opinionated and unsubmissive. I have only had that problem with rural white men who also complain about people speaking Spanish in Wal-Mart.
Tracy's killing it, as usual. <3