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I'm so sick of the insistence that defriending people (whether on social media or in real life) who are politically different from you is lazy, undemocratic, or straight up "epistemic closure."

Like, look, normally I might agree with this statement, but this election cycle there is a candidate who is straight up advocating FOR violence and advocating AGAINST civil rights in a bid for straight-up fascist totalitarianism, and I'm sorry, but anyone who AGREES with this shit and is willing to vote for it is not only NOT MY FRIEND but not someone I want to be around AT ALL.

I mean, think about it. If someone was in your house and spoke gross racial epithets and talked gleefully about hurting other people, what would you do? You can try to talk sense, but that only gets you so far--in addition to the general emotional exhaustion and, let's be real, further verbal abuse you are likely to get. And to everyone with patience and spoons: GO YOU!!!! But for those of us without spoons, for those of us who see this shit as threats of direct violence to us and our loved ones, why the FUCK should we put up with it? It's right back to that freedom of speech is not freedom from consequences.

Or, as I saw in a glorious tweet: "Lifehack: You do not have to be friends with people you don't actually like."

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( 4 comments — Add your .02 )
avictoriangirl
Sep. 30th, 2016 08:49 pm (UTC)
Yes. Thank fuck someone finally said it. I AGREE WITH YOU 150%.

I will be so thankful when this election is over and I don't have to hear about Trump's shit anymore. Because there is no alternative other than Hillary winning.
sangueuk
Sep. 30th, 2016 09:38 pm (UTC)
Word. He's a fucking joke and an embarrassment to your country and I feel for you! *hugs*
browngirl
Oct. 1st, 2016 05:41 am (UTC)
So much truth.

I've been thinking about this topic for Awhile, and I think one of the ideas that feeds into "defending people.... who are politically different from you is lazy, undemocratic, or straight up "epstemic closure." is false equivalence. By which I mean...

While it's often true that people manage to construct bubbles of thought on topics and remain unaware of opposing views, the ability to do that is NOT evenly distributed. In fact, it is a facet of privilege, and its distribution tracks with other such facets. For example, taking a group I'm not a member of: it's quite easy for many non-Muslim citizens of our shared country to have a mental image of Islam and its adherents composed entirely of nasty stereotypes. It's a lot harder for most Muslim citizens to remain utterly unaware of and unaffected by the stereotypes of their religion and themselves as adherents. I picked this example in part because of what I'm doing to counter those stereotypes in my own head: I'm fortunate enough to know some Muslims, and I have resources before me to do a little research. But/and it doesn't enhance my understanding to make myself keep a "balance of viewpoints" by making myself keep listening to people who want to deport or beat up or otherwise abuse Muslims, who equate all Islam with terrorism and other evils. I already know enough about that viewpoint and won't keep learning from continued soaking in it.

To say nothing of the people who hate, and support those who hate, groups I belong to. I don't need to make myself listen to any more bigotry, both because it's bad for me and because it's frankly *repetitive*. And I really do think that many people who espouse the "never cut off communications over politics" idea are speaking from a place of privilege, have not experienced the horrible gut-chilling double realization of not only "This person hates the members of a group I belong to" but (importantly) ALSO "the way society is structured gives them more likelihood and/or power to act on that hatred towards us, towards me." (That last is something the people who cry that 'reverse' bigotry is Just As Bad or Even Worse are not taking into account -- some demographics are more at risk because of the structure of society. That's one aspect of what being disprivileged means.)

To sum up: I most wordily agree with you. :)
fritz42
Oct. 1st, 2016 04:35 pm (UTC)
I concur most heartedly. That crap shouldn't be encouraged, even passively. Cutting off ties is personally healthy. I loved your comment about freedom of speech is not freedom from consequences.

I can't stand the depths to which the political discourse has sunk to on that one side. The stuff that spews out of that candidate's mouth and Twitter feed is poisoning our country and emboldening groups of people who shouldn't be. My worry is that even after the election and even if he doesn't win, those groups and people will continue to spew the hate and rhetoric more so because he has encouraged them, all for his political and narcissistic gains.
( 4 comments — Add your .02 )

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