Wednesday, June 17, 2015

On calling out your own tribe

This comment on Slate Star Codex illustrates a lot of the issues I have with the activist left, even while I support most of their goals.
I also used to belong to marginalized communities and they did everything they damn could to convince people they couldn’t leave. Being told or heavily implied at “You are broken in this way and you can never fit in/change” (in regards to disability) was common once one got past all of the empowerment rtherotic. Or constant hyping of how scary and terrifying other communities are, which has the lovely side effect of making people essentially oppress themselves. Reading things from my supposed “in-group” almost always seems to upset me or make me feel more oppressed than I am. Reading far right stuff is also upsetting but in a different way.
Reading far right blogs has no effect on me except maybe to think that they're ridiculous. Most far left literature makes me almost viscerally angry.  I can't remember the exact quote, but somewhere I read that the ones you almost agree with are the ones you'll find yourself fighting with the most. Right-wingers are alien to me.The far left, whose goals I largely agree with, but whose authoritarian means of achieving those goals which I can't support, make me wonder if I really am fighting for the wrong side. The "left" now is synonymous with activism, and a lot of leftist are quick to blacklist anyone who doesn't fall in lockstep with their ideology. Witness the number of women who've criticized contemporary feminism who are condemned as "conservative feminists" or "anti-feminists" even if they don't self-identify as such. Most of these women aren't conservative, but there is no place in a two-party system for someone who supports leftist causes but not the "ends justifies the means" authoritarianism.