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A Word from CoC Creator Sandy Petersen


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...in which Sandy displays and conveys fundamental misunderstandings regarding both sport and gender identity:

Leaving aside emotional appeals to the virtue of being a grandparent and "for the children!", to be clear, the question has been framed wrong.  Sandy's granddaughters will always be competing against people with a genetic edge, regardless of gender identity at birth.  That is the nature of sport.

Also to be clear, Sandy's linking genetic muscle mass to superior athletic performance becomes dangerously bigoted very quickly.

!i!

Edited by Ian Absentia
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So, @Ian Absentia, it took me a little bit to work out how I feel about your post.

Let me say that I want to offer an honest and candid reply to the issue you're expressing here. But I also recognize the controversy and hot-button nature of it. My wife and I have a rule around our house: "If your partner says something that can be taken two ways, and one of those ways either insults you or pisses you off, they most likely meant it the other way." If we can proceed from that premise, I think we'll be fine. I certainly mean no insult or condescension in my comments.

Let's start with the basics here: there are sports where muscle mass counts for more than agility or flexibility. You don't ask weightlifters to do gymnastics routines at a competitive level, after all. ALL sports require the will to win, the dedication to excellence at the competitive level, so that's not an issue. But muscle mass and testosterone play a role in some sports. When you remember, as Sandy and I do, watching Soviet and East German 'gymnasts' [among other sports] show up to the Olympics after a four-year course of male steroid treatments, you can understand where Sandy would like to a solid consensus, a firm rule, of who can compete in girls sports.

As things sit right now, I am unaware of any scientific consensus as to when a transgender should undergo the gender reassignment process. As I understand it, there is a big debate among the psychology and medical fields as to when the healthiest time in a person's life is for this radical and irreversible decision to be made. Even psychology is divided in it's definitions of 'transgender' vs. 'transvestitism'. At least, as of DSM 5 anyway. I'm aware that there's a large amount of argument over what's going to be changed for the upcoming DSM 6 on the LBGTQ front.

Now in my own personal opinion, I think that the decision to undergo gender reassignment should wait until a person is 21 years of age, when they are legally responsible for their own decisions, or 25 when science tells us that a person's brain stops developing. At this point in life a person's identity is fairly well 'set' and they're largely over hormonal confusions that our teenage years impose on us. I also think that a person should compete in boys sports if they're biologically male and female if biologically female.

Does this leave transgenders out of a large part of international competition at a young age? Yes, it does. Is that fair? Probably not. But life is not fair. That's not me being heartless or unsympathetic [I know three people who begun gender reassignment, only one succeeded (completed?) in the process]. I'm just telling the truth, however uncomfortable.

And let me poke the bear just a little bit here: @SandyofCthulhu has every right to be uncomfortable with transgenders competing with his granddaughters. It's his opinion and he has every right to it, just as you have every right to disagree with him. Now, I've never met Sandy. Don't know the man, so I'm making no claims about his character one way or the other. But the process of social change demands activists AND resistance to activism for responsible change to happen.

Consider this: I'm in my mid-50's and when I served in the US Army back in the 80's, being called a 'faggot' was an INSTANT fight. This was the era of the Cold War and before 'Don't ask /Don't tell'. People I knew [two of whom were better soldiers than I was] were thrown out of the Army in disgrace for being gay. But as of right now gays, lesbians, and transgenders may serve without bar in any of the services. And in 2020 Pete Buttigieg, with his husband looking on, came within inches of being the Democratic candidate for POTUS... the single most powerful elected office on Earth.

Positive change DOES happen and it IS happening. Is it fast enough for you? At a guess, I would say no. But it's CERTAINLY happening in this generation much faster than the HIV victims of the 80's thought it would.

Let me conclude by saying that I have no dog in this fight. I honestly don't care who somebody loves or sleeps with so long as three simple criteria are met:

a] Everyone is an adult [as opposed to 'age of consent']

b] Everyone has given their informed consent

c] No one is being forced or coerced into it.

If those are met, then what you do with your personal life is your own affair.

 

 

Edited by svensson
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  • Ian is right; this is a bad opinion and there's so much science on it. Why? Because hormones are what affect your muscle mass. Transitioning means you have the same hormone balance as a woman, and that means XY chromosomes mean shit when lifting. Trans athletes have zero history of winning anything and have been around a very long time.
  • Svensson, you're wrong and you also have no idea what you're talking about and it's actively hurtful and I am so tired of having to explain this everywhere, you don't understand how puberty affects transgender people or how consent works for transgender teenagers so please stop with the nuclear hot takes
  • literally nuclear hot take i'm not about to step up to people on Basic Roleplaying dot com but you think you're being reasonable when you've dropped a depth charge into a crowded pool this is not what I wanna see at 7 am on Pretend I'm an Uz the Website, it's just the worst ignorance said with the most brazen confidence of a mediocre man
  • and you top it off with "i don't care who anyone sleeps with" my dude this has nothing to do with the topic at hand may i be protected by god from satan the deceiver
  • finally stop fucking calling people "transgenders" got in himl and how dare you transvestitism me how dare you bring this pseudoscience into this house
  • in short, we're in your life, we're on this website, we're delivering your mail, we're all around you and you don't get to drop this disrespectful shit on us. I'm a fucking grog, so don't try to "i'm old" you're way out of this, either.
  • We are not objects to be discussed and examined. We are not show dogs to be discussed like when we should be bred and spayed.
  • YES, I'M ANGRY, THIS IS SO HURTFUL AND HATEFUL
Edited by Qizilbashwoman
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9 hours ago, Qizilbashwoman said:
  • Ian is right; this is a bad opinion and there's so much science on it. Why? Because hormones are what affect your muscle mass. Transitioning means you have the same hormone balance as a woman, and that means XY chromosomes mean shit when lifting. Trans athletes have zero history of winning anything and have been around a very long time.
  • Svensson, you're wrong and you also have no idea what you're talking about and it's actively hurtful and I am so tired of having to explain this everywhere, you don't understand how puberty affects transgender people or how consent works for transgender teenagers so please stop with the nuclear hot takes
  • literally nuclear hot take i'm not about to step up to people on Basic Roleplaying dot com but you think you're being reasonable when you've dropped a depth charge into a crowded pool this is not what I wanna see at 7 am on Pretend I'm an Uz the Website, it's just the worst ignorance said with the most brazen confidence of a mediocre man
  • and you top it off with "i don't care who anyone sleeps with" my dude this has nothing to do with the topic at hand may i be protected by god from satan the deceiver
  • finally stop fucking calling people "transgenders" got in himl and how dare you transvestitism me how dare you bring this pseudoscience into this house
  • in short, we're in your life, we're on this website, we're delivering your mail, we're all around you and you don't get to drop this disrespectful shit on us. I'm a fucking grog, so don't try to "i'm old" you're way out of this, either.
  • We are not objects to be discussed and examined. We are not show dogs to be discussed like when we should be bred and spayed.
  • YES, I'M ANGRY, THIS IS SO HURTFUL AND HATEFUL

Qizil, I've never said one intentional word to disrespect you. If you have found disrespect in my views, I can only say that I didn't intend to condescend or belittle anyone. We've had honest and frank discussions in the past and I've always respected what you've had to say even when I disagree with you.

Let me make a couple things you mention in your reply crystal clear:

a] I have no specific issue with transgenders. Do I understand them? No, I do not. I compare being transgender with being pregnant or a combat veteran: you've either been through it and therefore understand, or you have no idea what you're talking about. I do not know the emotional impact that being transgender has, and I never claimed that I do.

b] No, I don't understand how puberty effects transgender people. But I also said that psychology and medicine are at odds over the issue. So, failing a solid scientific platform upon which to make a reasonable and rational decision, I defaulted to what I do consider reasonable: waiting until a person is fully developed before undertaking such a radical process.

c] Each and everything I said is just one man's opinion. I do not state that 'this is how all should be done' or wave God, or the flag, or anything else to support that opinion other than the specific points I raised.

d] I also fully support anyone's right to agree or disagree with that opinion. Including you and Ian.

e] Transgender issues have long been tied up in the greater LBG-Trangender-Q movement. Perhaps I should rephrase my 'sleep with' comment as 'I don't care what your sexual /gender /identity issues are'. As for Transvestitism, I don't know if you're aware of this, but DSM 4.5 listed Transgender and Transvestitism as related diagnostic phenomena. In DSM 5, the two were separated and there is a large argument in the APA [American Psychiatric Association] specifically and mental health field generally as to how Transgender is supposed to be addressed in DSM 6. This is the conflict I was referring to.

f] At no point am I treating the transgender issues you're concerned about cavalierly or with disrespect. You object to my viewpoint. That's fair and I can easily accept that. But I have NOT treated a subculture that I don't fully understand with hatred or contempt. Just because you disagree with me does not make what I said 'hate speech'. I advocate for NO violence, NO silencing, NO sidelining to those working for the transgender community.

g] As to my age.... I am following my own advice about 'they meant it the other way' and making a choice not to be offended. I'm not 'boomering' anyone or acting like someone's issues aren't important because 'I'm old and things were tougher then'. I offered a perspective based on 50+ years of riding this rock around the sun. The changes you want to see ARE happening, and I used the events I've observed to illustrate that fact. There was NO condescension in what I said.

h] As for calling people 'transgenders', exactly what should I call people who are pre-reassignment trans? 'Gott im Himmel', I'm only trying to identify the human beings I'm speaking about, not talking about an animal in a zoo.

Finally, I acknowledge that you feel angry and offended. I respect your feelings and sincerely apologize for upsetting your morning. I am truly sorry for the unintentional insult and I really do hope that you and I can find a balancing point where we can talk without hurting each other's feelings.

Respectfully,

-- Carl H.

 

Edited by svensson
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So what was the intent of the original post?

Not Sandy Petersen's post in Twitter - which was in form at least an honest question - I mean the first post in this thread on the BRP forum.

This appears to me to have been an experiment in starting an on-line mob.  It was certainly followed up as such. 

I came here to read about Glorantha and Runequest, not to watch an on-line mobbing.  And, FYI, I don't do twitter, where the short message length is ideally suited to short bumper sticker phrases -  I  am happy to leave it to twits.

If there isn't already a rule against this, then the moderators should make one.

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3 minutes ago, Squaredeal Sten said:

So what was the intent of the original post?

Not Sandy Petersen's post in Twitter - which was in form at least an honest question - I mean the first post in this thread on the BRP forum.

This appears to me to have been an experiment in starting an on-line mob.  It was certainly followed up as such. 

I came here to read about Glorantha and Runequest, not to watch an on-line mobbing.  And, FYI, I don't do twitter, where the short message length is ideally suited to short bumper sticker phrases -  I  am happy to leave it to twits.

If there isn't already a rule against this, then the moderators should make one.

In absolute fairness, this was included in the 'grab bag' portion of the board.

I'd posted something earlier last night on this board about 'Gaming with Relatives' dealing with games, sexuality, getting older, and my struggles with them in a tangled knot. I guess that's what got me considering Ian's complaint about Sandy.

At this point in the discussion everybody is being reasonably civil. Some feelings are bruised, but nobody's breaking out the curse words.

And I couldn't agree with you more about Twitter. 'Meme warfare' is about the lowest form of platforming one's viewpoint that I can imagine. Facebook and Twitter [and Tik Tok and...] reduce what ought to be a discussion down to 'gotcha' politics and 'what about' arguments.

There's a certain conceit that I've noticed on each end of the political spectrum both in the US and in Europe [or, at least in Holland, the UK, and Germany where I have friends]... the conceit that if one doesn't agree with with a given viewpoint one isn't 'something' enough. Using the US as an example [it's what I know best, after all] if you disagree with a Right /Conservative /Republican /Libertarian you're not 'Christian' enough [that's code, btw, for evangelical Baptist, Methodist, etc. Episcopalians like me need not apply], or MURCAN! enough. If you have the unmitigated gall to disagree with Left /Progressive /Democrat /Socialist, you're obviously not smart or evolved enough to understand them. Either way, the conceit is the same... you don't agree with me and therefore you are some kind of 'untermensch'. And populist social media just fuels that nonsense.

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, Squaredeal Sten said:

So what was the intent of the original post?

Fair question.  I encountered this story through my news feed, apparently at the intersection of Track & Field (which I follow) and Chaosium (which I also follow), and not Sandy or his Twitter account (neither of which I follow).  It's a timely issue being discussed by a prominent member of the Chaosium team, and I wanted to bring it here to the "grab bag" (thanks, svensson) arse-end of the official Chaosium discussion board to disabuse people, both in general and specific, of several misconceptions that Sandy was perpetuating and/or promoting.

I've no wish to argue points made by others since my original post, but I will expand on my comments.  In the interest of fair disclosure, I coach and train young athletes and have a stake in this discussion.  My interest in Chaosium's games I believe is evident.

  1. Sport is the domain of outliers.  World-class and professional sport even moreso.  A huge array of genetic advantage is on explicit display regardless of the level of participation or the specific sport in question.
  2. Muscle mass as a metric of physical excellence is a common infatuation and misconception.  While conferring certain advantages, it carries disadvantages as well.  We all remember the big kid everyone wanted on their football team, but who turned out to be clumsy or lacked that "killer instinct"  Physical excellence, regardless of sport (though there's specific variation, of course), is a convergence of A) physical capacity, B) access to training, and C) the will to excel.
  3. The dubious advantages of someone altering their identity and body in order to leverage physical mass in hopes of doing better at sport relative to others is grossly outweighed by the stigma, the contempt, and the hurt they face on and off the playing field.  The fear of unfair advantage is a false dilemma in this case.
  4. Getting back to muscle mass as a genetic advantage, this is an argument that has historically been used to categorise and denigrate whole groups of people, particularly black people, and especially black women.  Did I just go there?  Yes, I certainly did.  At best, it's a slippery slope toward the racism that permeates sport, and at worst it's a smokescreen for existing opinion.

I encounter these arguments about perceived advantages regularly among coaches, trainers, officials, and parents, and they'd be laughable if they weren't so hurtful.  Honestly, I'm not surprised to see arguments about "unfair advantage" coming from someone devoted to developing and implementing theoretical rules intended to provide expected outcomes.  And I'm willing to apply that statement to both game industry professionals and politicians.

!i!

Edited by Ian Absentia
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4 hours ago, Ian Absentia said:

Fair question.  I encountered this story through my news feed, apparently at the intersection of Track & Field (which I follow) and Chaosium (which I also follow), and not Sandy or his Twitter account (neither of which I follow).  It's a timely issue being discussed by a prominent member of the Chaosium team, and I wanted to bring it here to the "grab bag" (thanks, svensson) arse-end of the official Chaosium discussion board to disabuse people, both in general and specific, of several misconceptions that Sandy was perpetuating and/or promoting.

I've no wish to argue points made by others since my original post, but I will expand on my comments.  In the interest of fair disclosure, I coach and train young athletes and have a stake in this discussion.  My interest in Chaosium's games I believe is evident.

  1. Sport is the domain of outliers.  World-class and professional sport even moreso.  A huge array of genetic advantage is on explicit display regardless of the level of participation or the specific sport in question.
  2. Muscle mass as a metric of physical excellence is a common infatuation and misconception.  While conferring certain advantages, it carries disadvantages as well.  We all remember the big kid everyone wanted on their football team, but who turned out to be clumsy or lacked that "killer instinct"  Physical excellence, regardless of sport (though there's specific variation, of course), is a convergence of A) physical capacity, B) access to training, and C) the will to excel.
  3. The dubious advantages of someone altering their identity and body in order to leverage physical mass in hopes of doing better at sport relative to others is grossly outweighed by the stigma, the contempt, and the hurt they face on and off the playing field.  The fear of unfair advantage is a false dilemma in this case.
  4. Getting back to muscle mass as a genetic advantage, this is an argument that has historically been used to categorise and denigrate whole groups of people, particularly black people, and especially black women.  Did I just go there?  Yes, I certainly did.  At best, it's a slippery slope toward the racism that permeates sport, and at worst it's a smokescreen for existing opinion.

I encounter these arguments about perceived advantages regularly among coaches, trainers, officials, and parents, and they'd be laughable if they weren't so hurtful.  Honestly, I'm not surprised to see arguments about "unfair advantage" coming from someone devoted to developing and implementing theoretical rules intended to provide expected outcomes.  And I'm willing to apply that statement to both game industry professionals and politicians.

!i!

Well, Ian, I can only go back to the concerns about PEDs and the Soviet era experiments with their Olympic gymnasts, swimmers, weightlifters, and a couple other sports [memory fails me but I remember a fair laundry list] where their 'sports science academies' would inject girl and women athletes with male hormones to give them a competitive edge. There was one notable case where TV film coverage showed a female swimmer that had enough facial hair to require shaving and her before and after pictures from the World Championships two years before and her musculature at the Olympics were significantly different... like 30 lbs of pure muscle different.

Then you add in the stories from the 90's 'Roid Era' in US Football and especially Baseball. Then add in Lance Armstrong disgracing himself.

So I don't see Sandy's comments in your OP as being anti-transgender but more protective by a concerned grandfather. You correctly give the formula of a winning athlete: a] physical body capable of the sport, b] training and technique, c] the will and determination to not only win but to put in the long training hours it takes to put yourself in a position to win. And we both know families that have their kid on Weider muscle diets at 10 years old and find nothing whatever wrong with finding some shady 'clinic' in Florida to send them PEDs by the time the kid is 15.

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Posted (edited)
47 minutes ago, svensson said:

So I don't see Sandy's comments in your OP as being anti-transgender but more protective by a concerned grandfather.

Not directly anti-transgender, perhaps, but obliquely by invoking the bugaboo of men masquerading as women -- through sport in this case, but we haven't forgotten more odious arguments about other situations in recent years.  And he doesn't raise the spectre of doping, only the perception of chromosomal advantage, which carries more far-reaching baggage as I pointed out.  And I've already discounted his appeals to emotion for being a grandparent trying to protect the children.

Your remarks on doping and over-zealous sports parents are much appreciated, but I believe a separate issue.  For the record, in my somewhat limited experience, I've yet to see a transgender youth athlete train and compete at championship levels.  I can only assume that they and their parents are dealing with far more important issues.  And if participating in sports along with every other kid who doesn't make the podium gives them some sense of relief and normalcy, then more power to 'em.

!i!

Edited by Ian Absentia
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I just think this topic has no place here. We're a free society and everyone's entitled to their opinion, and to post it in appropriate forums, but this isn't an appropriate forum for this topic. I know that's arguable, the ASI is specifically for off topic discussions, but I think no good can come of this. I see comments on political issues here every now and again I vehemently disagree with, and I let it slide. Not worth it. This is like that.

If this was about inclusivity or appropriate behaviour in gaming yes, fine. That's a legitimate and important debate that comes up on gaming community forums from time to time.

Maybe I'm wrong. Maybe the fact that people with opposing views on this topic on this forum have common interests in gaming will actually help them find common ground. On the other hand maybe it'll poison the well. I can hope for the former but I fear the latter.

Edited by simonh
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Check out the Runequest Glorantha Wiki for RQ links and resources. Any updates or contributions welcome!

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When I saw his pro-Trump likes appearing in Twitter, that was the point when I unfollowed and unsubscribed to the YouTube channel. The only surprising thing about the latest furore was that it didn’t come sooner.

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Mr. T is another hot button topic, but the fact is he has a lot of supporters. I'm in the UK and there's not a lot of them here, but in the US there are probably few families that don't have his supporters in there somewhere. Few work places completely absent of them. They are probably some on this forum, and if so Hi there.

A lot of people have views we disagree with or even feel are terrible, we've just got to suck it up and treat them with respect anyway. Free speech is the right to say things other people find offensive, otherwise it's meaningless, and outrage feels good but it's a terrible way to persuade anyone of anything. If we are going to discuss this sort of thing, deep breath, talk it out.

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Check out the Runequest Glorantha Wiki for RQ links and resources. Any updates or contributions welcome!

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2 hours ago, simonh said:

I just think this topic has no place here. We're a free society and everyone's entitled to their opinion, and to post it in appropriate forums, but this isn't an appropriate forum for this topic.

I understand your position and appreciate it.  However, Sandy, under the handle of "SandyofCthulhu", used his recognition and authority in the gaming community to promote fundamental misunderstandings regarding both the transgender community and sport.  I stand by my decision to draw attention to it here, where his opinion has influence and to refute his statements.

I disagree with the position that "we've just got to suck it up" when others are leveraging their right to free speech as a means to misinform.

!i!

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2 hours ago, simonh said:

A lot of people have views we disagree with or even feel are terrible, we've just got to suck it up and treat them with respect anyway. Free speech is the right to say things other people find offensive, otherwise it's meaningless, and outrage feels good but it's a terrible way to persuade anyone of anything. If we are going to discuss this sort of thing, deep breath, talk it out.

And we have the right to call things out and ignore. Always amuses me to imagine a particular scene in the classic Twelve Angry Men being rewritten to accommodate the sit down and talk it over brigade; clearly it should have been: 'now hold on a minute everyone, let's hear him out'...

 

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This thread is a civil one with good behaviour by all, but please remember, this is not an academic question about academic posts. There are real members of the LGBTQ2S+ communities who will be reading these posts and facing emotional distress on our unemotional posts. Let’s hope they are not reading these and contemplating the harm they represent to them (intended of not), or worse contemplating self harm. 

Real comments made with real consequences friends. Please remember that!

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... remember, with a TARDIS, one is never late for breakfast!

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1 hour ago, Bill the barbarian said:

This thread is a civil one with good behaviour by all, but please remember, this is not an academic question about academic posts. There are real members of the LGBTQ2S+ communities who will be reading these posts and facing emotional distress on our unemotional posts. Let’s hope they are not reading these and contemplating the harm they represent to them (intended of not), or worse contemplating self harm. 

Real comments made with real consequences friends. Please remember that!

real trans people (me) have already said comments on this discussion make them feel horrific and dissected

Sandy's comments are gross, as well

should we next talk about genitals? that's where this conversation always ends up, so why not skip there now?

I've been living with this since before 9/11 and you'd think I'd be used to the dehumanising way people talk about trans people and trans children, but no, I never ever do get used to it.

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10 hours ago, Qizilbashwoman said:

real trans people (me) have already said comments on this discussion make them feel horrific and dissected

Sandy's comments are gross, as well

should we next talk about genitals? that's where this conversation always ends up, so why not skip there now?

I've been living with this since before 9/11 and you'd think I'd be used to the dehumanising way people talk about trans people and trans children, but no, I never ever do get used to it.

Qizil, if I made you feel 'horrible and dissected', I apologize. That was unintentional.

As I mentioned, I've known three people with enough gender identification issues that they began the reassignment process. These were not casual friends. They were people I gamed with, celebrated holidays with, knew in the SCA, and so forth. But they are PEOPLE, with feelings, not subjects one talks about in college level Intro to Biology. Those of us outside the trans community are trying to understand and respond in a rational way. YOU are NOT a subject of study or an object in a Petri dish. THE SUBJECT of transgendger[-ism?] is what we're trying to wrap our heads around. Yeah, it's semantics, but I really do think it's important in this case.

If we in the mainstream Hetero majority 'get scientific' when we talk about the issue of transgenders, mostly it's because we're trying to remove the emotional stuff out of the discussion... the 'men in girls bathrooms' nonsense [which I personally equate to the 'you can catch AIDS from toilet seats' bullshit from back in the 80's]. And yeah, when we do that it can seem like we're purposely forgetting that transgenders are human beings. It's an awkward subject for us and that generates a VERY awkward response. I think for most of us who know trans people, that's where it starts and stops. But I'd be a fool if I didn't recognize that there is a solid bloc of hateful individuals out there mucking up the discussion.

 

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14 hours ago, Pnick said:

And we have the right to call things out and ignore. Always amuses me to imagine a particular scene in the classic Twelve Angry Men being rewritten to accommodate the sit down and talk it over brigade; clearly it should have been: 'now hold on a minute everyone, let's hear him out'...

Ten years ago when Congress mandated that gays and lesbians could serve in the US military without bar, I thought to myself: 'Damn! AT LAST, a major piece of civil rights legislation happened in the correct forum, in the proper branch of government. Presidents should not make laws based on Executive Orders. The Supreme Court should not make laws by twisting the words of the Constitution to fit some modern narrative. It is the Legislative Branch's job to make laws, and they finally got off their asses and freaking did it.'

THAT'S what 'free speech', the First Amendment to the Constitution of the United States, did. Just like with the Civil Rights Act of 1963, our society talked about it, reached a consensus and passed the appropriate laws. Yes, it took some shouting and activism, maybe even a little revolution, but it got done and it got done reasonably peaceably.

Grouse as much as you like about 'let's talk about it brigade' [after all, you have the right to say so], but it beats the shit out of 'burn it all down and start over'. Democracy might be a lousy form of government, but it's a long country mile ahead of whatever is in second place.

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One person's 'let them have their say' is another person's platforming of intolerance.

I'd hardy call Popper a 'burn it all down and start over revolutionary' — and I disagree with him on many things — nonetheless:

 

1*TnDoAk0BjC7x4OuBISbYCw.jpeg.b44acb030d2528bdc75c0bce160c451a.jpeg

 

Edited by Pnick
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"the Paradox of Intolerance" is why we say "punch a Nazi". You can't talk to Nazis, it doesn't work. If you let them share space, they take over. The only appropriate reaction is to throw them out of your space so that the space remains free of fascism.

Anyone who has spent any time at all in the punk scene knows exactly how this works: if you don't force fascist assholes out of bars and clubs the moment you identify them, they will start bringing their friends, and pretty soon it's their bar or club. Throw them out physically or you lose.

It's just the way it works. Their goal is "eliminate all non-fascists". You can't talk someone down from that point, and it leaves no room for anyone else. They want to kill you.

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I agree with @Pnick and @Qizilbashwoman wholeheartedly.... up to a point.

If you're going to resolve anything by debate and discussion, both sides have to be open to the ideas of the other. And there will always be that percentage of people who refuse to be convinced of anything. There's not much you can do with those assholes. But here's the thing about that: everybody is a stubborn mule about something. We all have our sacred cows in our individual beliefs no matter how open minded we try to be. It's just human nature.

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44 minutes ago, svensson said:

I agree with @Pnick and @Qizilbashwoman wholeheartedly.... up to a point.

If you're going to resolve anything by debate and discussion, both sides have to be open to the ideas of the other. And there will always be that percentage of people who refuse to be convinced of anything. There's not much you can do with those assholes. But here's the thing about that: everybody is a stubborn mule about something. We all have our sacred cows in our individual beliefs no matter how open minded we try to be. It's just human nature.

we're not talking about sacred cows. we're talking about fascism. popper's law (and its subsequent re-formations) is pretty specific about "not tolerating intolerance". to allow freedom of speech to those who would use it to eliminate the very principle upon which that freedom relies is paradoxical.

if your sacred cows include slavery, elimination of the Muslims or Jews, White Nationalism, or the like, we're gonna have words.

And yes, that does mean we're a bit fucked in the English-speaking world, yes.

Edited by Qizilbashwoman
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1 hour ago, Qizilbashwoman said:

we're not talking about sacred cows. we're talking about fascism. popper's law (and its subsequent re-formations) is pretty specific about "not tolerating intolerance". to allow freedom of speech to those who would use it to eliminate the very principle upon which that freedom relies is paradoxical.

if your sacred cows include slavery, elimination of the Muslims or Jews, White Nationalism, or the like, we're gonna have words.

And yes, that does mean we're a bit fucked in the English-speaking world, yes.

And I'm fine with ostracizing and marginalizing those who preach political and racial violence... in ANY context. But that's not what I was referring to. You can't have a conversation or discussion with ultra-nationalists, street corner preachers, mad mullahs, or anarchists. They're so rigid in their beliefs that an actual discussion comes down to 'you either agree that [insert agenda here] or you're an enemy'. That's no basis for responsible and peaceful change.

And mind you, I'm absolutely against political violence in a functioning democracy. And that means that as a historian it is incumbent on me to note that many of our nation's Founding Fathers were indeed terrorists. If burning a man's house down in the middle of New England winter and tar-and-feathering him [literally!] while he family watches isn't terrorism, I don't know what is. And that's precisely what Samuel Adams and several other did.

As the English speaking world being fucked, a lot of people, from Emperor Napoleon III to Kaiser Wilhelm to Josef Stalin, have tried to use the flaws of democracy against it and thus far it have never worked. Every single form of government has its flaws and vulnerabilities. No government is immune to overthrow. That's just how us semi-evolved monkeys do business and it's been that way since Lucy came down from the trees.

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