On Tactics Re: Oppression

Okidokey. Look, I know I’m a cis-gendered white male, so I get that I have privilege issues, and I need to acknowledge that up front. If you don’t feel like listening to what I have to say, that’s your right.

So at least I'm not guily of this one (at the moment)
So at least I’m not guilty of this one (at the moment)

On the other hand, I’m gay and atheist, and unlike the new generation, I grew up when that meant being spit on, beat up, raped or killed for being who I am – far more so than it does today.

Thanks to people like these.  Hey, Is it wrong that I think the one second from the right is unimaginably cute? - Probably. But hey, at least I'm not participating in ageism, since that photo was taken before I was born.
Thanks to people like these.
Hey, Is it wrong that I think the one second from the right is unimaginably cute? – Probably. But at least I’m not participating in ageism, since that photo was taken before I was born.

I’ve lived in terror, learned to fight back, worked to change public opinion, been beaten, used, taken advantage of sexually; I’ve been told by people in uniform that since I was gay it probably wasn’t REALLY rape, was it, now. I’ve been shouted at by evangelicals and Phelps clones, been told I am dirty, disgusting, an offense against the creator, an abomination only worthy of death. I’ve protested against treating people Of ANY gender, genetic origin, political creed or gender preference, in a discriminatory fashion. And I agree that there are some serious issues with how women are treated – in public and in private – by cis-gendered hetero men of all origins. I also agree that as a man I am only capable of understanding a small portion of what it means to be a woman.

Oh, Oliver. Why must you feed into the patriarchy?
Oh, Oliver. Why must you feed into the patriarchy?

You can probably tell I’m leading up to a ‘but’ here, though. So here is my caveat:

The thing is that just like with the treatment of gays, lesbians, transgendered and otherwise queer individuals, the problems won’t stop unless we win hearts and minds. – ACT UP didn’t accomplish as much for gay rights as the nationwide movement to come out to parents, siblings, and friends, and put a personal, friendly, relatable face on the problem.

As opposed to this.
As opposed to this.

There are times when the hatred of an oppressor is justified – indeed, the only thing that is capable of sustaining one through a dark time. I’m not disputing that – I’ve been there in my own way.

But that hatred becomes self-defeating when it helps your oppressors create caricatures of you, and you of them; it stops dialogue and change dead.

It becomes a hindrance when it blinds you to potential allies – people who may be privileged in one way or another, but who abhor what is being done to you.

And it becomes delusional when it allows you to engage in the same hate speech against your oppressors that they would use against you in your place. I’m speaking to you, Michelle.

There are people both outside and inside the feminist movement who understand this: people like Theresa Warburton and Joshua Cerretti, who wrote an insightful article on white privilege, and also Dr. Nerdlove. – I don’t always agree with everything they say, but they aren’t vilifying me for existing, and seem interested in engaging all comers in a dialogue; that’s all I really ask of anyone.

discussing privilege - ur doin it right
Discussing privilege – Ur doin it right

I have lived on both sides of privilege – And I know that I can never be free of that taint, because many hardcore feminists will only see me for my gender and the color of my skin. They will name me oppressor. They will argue that I’m serving to uphold white male privilege – when I’ve spent my life (and blood – literally) working against it. It reminds me very much of how I was treated when I wore a dress or held hands with another man or marched for civil rights for alternative gender preferences. And it makes me sad that anyone part of a people oppressed would turn to oppression themselves.

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Paul Zak on the Trust Molecule

An amazing talk hosted on TED (of course) – This video has (if only figuratively) blown my mind. I wish I could get my hands on some pharmaceutical-grade oxytocin and dose the world (Or at least the GOP – they seem to need it more than most). ^^

For those who can’t see the video above, here’s the link: http://www.ted.com/talks/paul_zak_trust_morality_and_oxytocin.html

Penn Jillette Doing What He Does Best – Talk

Generally speaking I admire Penn Jillette for a couple of reasons. The one I admire him most for is his uncompromising and well-reasoned world-view (although we definitely disagree on some subjects). Here he is, making more of his thought-process and wisdom available. This time, it’s on religion, politicians, and religious behavior of elected officials.

Graduation

(>^.^)> <(^v^)> <(^.^<)

I am sooooo…. glad…. It’s OVER! No more tests for a while, no more stuffing my brain with homework on the side…

On the other hand, I’m so looking forward to starting up again… SO MUCH KNOWLEDGE OUT THERE…

I feel like the guy from that Twilight Zone episode did, right before he broke his glasses.

Yeah, that guy.

I said BEFORE he broke his glasses. Jesus.

I’ve seen so much that I’ve wanted to show you all… I don’t know where to start. I’ve been building up since about mid-quarter, but school and homework (and my boyfriend ^^) came first.

So to start off, a little something on maturity.

http://www.viruscomix.com/gotes.jpg

I love the fact that whoever did this captured everyone at their best and worst… Maybe these should be renamed Barnum goats.

http://www.3steg.com/images/stories/super_human_expirence.gif

Talk about timing. That right there is something I can only admire… as long as it isn’t shooped, which it most likely is.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kirpan

That up there is about the only reason I can think of to become affiliated with a religion, even though I couldn’t actually believe in it. Being allowed to carry that bowie-esque sonuvabitch any-damn-where I want in public? and it’s my religious freedom, so law be damned? Freakin’ sweet.

Lastly, a little something to make up for that remark, because really, I promise I wouldn’t sell out my principles for a knife (unless it was Excalibur and the zombie apocalypse was at hand, at which point my principles would have a fire sale – you still wouldn’t be able to make me believe, but I’d say any damn thing you wanted to get my hands on a magic sword if evil undead were on the horizon).

http://lolgod.blogspot.com/2010/05/this-is-not-difficult-concept.html

So there ya go. I’m still Arthur from the block, or whatever.

See y’all soon!