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Deny Bigotry

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posted on Sep, 8 2006 @ 11:40 AM
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Originally posted by loam

Originally posted by Majic
...but what am I to tell members who find themselves slandered in the forums just for being who they are?
Tell them not to lose the strength of their convictions and to realize that there is injustice in the world...and dare I say it...to Deny Ignorance.

While bigotry is not condoneable, people need to grow thicker skins. If you are noticeably diffrent, you're going to stand out. You are going to be attacked by this generation of pin.ed thinkers who can't argue without reverting back to highschool insults. Don't for a moment let them define your station in life, and constantly defy their narrow views.

For real life situations:

For some weird reason, people around me think of me as a guy, not a girl. Or at the best, some dyke. They do this when they can see the 44DD clevage (feminely dressed clevage, at that...it's probably the 44 part, or the shoulders designed to hold the boobs) and hear me going on about my boyfriend for hours. It doesn't get to me. I get the other end of the spectrum, too. (ala Nanna Hooters @ joecartoons.com)

For guys that tell me i'm like that, I usually tell them that my c*** is bigger than theirs and I'd buy them a pump just to get theirs up to an acceptable manly size, so that they didn't need to feel ashamed of being compared to me. (This is a very blatant example...not subtle in any form.)

What did I do? I accepted the comment and deflected it back on them, at a level they can understand. I did it in a way that could be misconstrued as being nice (which I'm not). Thise not expecting it are much more humiliated than they intended to humiliate me. (I still don't understand how this can work with someone who's supposed to be a adult, but it does.)

Some of that, with very little ingenuity can be done to the namecallers that have to limit people by one single discussion, if it will make you feel better. I do it because I like to have the last word.


If you aren't in the least inclined to look at someone else's view, you are not going to grow. People like that ought to not have opinions.



Real life example, again:

I have a coworker who is sweet to your face, but very malicious, and says some of the meanest things about people when she doesn't think it will be either heard, or get back to them. Her husband beats her, and controls every moment he can not spent at work. her coworker/lover is one of the most arrogant, lazy a******* that you'll meet. He's barely a step up from the man who beats her. She clings to both men, can't make up her mind...*sigh* she's miserable, and her pot shots at other people help her to hide from how miserable her life is. Without being arrognat, I'm better at my job than she is at hers. I'm smarter (as her situation is not nearly something I'd be going through, I fought back against the one guy who even brought me close to being in a similar predicament, then left him for good). I have a man who treats me with respect, without me having to fight for it. (Hell, he'd pamper me, if I'd let him.) She knows my history, and knows that I've had some problem guys in my life, but that I've come through it and moved on to a better life. The fun part is that I'm not near as gorgeous as she is. I don't have near the looks to pull off what she's capable of. What she says can infuriate me, but I have more pity for her than anything else. Until she learns she can be independant, her life is going to be difficult, and she's going to lash out. You can't really help her, since she won't leave either guy (both aren't healthy for her) alone.

A lot of people who do narrowminded things, you should feel a second of pity for, then hit the ignore button. One less person to pity.




posted on Sep, 8 2006 @ 07:57 PM
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the problem as I see it is this: A goodly portion of us, and I am certainly included, have a tendency to paint with a VERY broad brush. All of them...everyone of them...All republicans...all democrats...etc...

Most of us try not to, but it sometimes slips through...It comes across as bigotry, but really isn't...more ignorance than actual bigotry. If this makes any sense.



posted on Sep, 9 2006 @ 12:48 AM
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I disagree with those who say Majic's idea of a kinder, gentler ATS would impede open debate. If you can't debate a contentious issue without name-calling, maybe this isn't the place for you.

I'm really surprised that people are defending that kind of behovior.



posted on Sep, 9 2006 @ 12:35 PM
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HH. All too often, however, no matter the good intentions, personalities come into play, to the detriment of the entire discussion. You know this, having witnessed it on several threads currently ongoing.

Politeness, and frankness can go hand in hand. No need to bring personalities into it, it's hard to do, but neccessary if any sort of answers are to be found.



posted on Sep, 9 2006 @ 12:55 PM
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Originally posted by seagull
A goodly portion of us, and I am certainly included, have a tendency to paint with a VERY broad brush. All of them...everyone of them...All republicans...all democrats...etc...


My rule of thumb is to look at the member I am talking to. Understand you are talking to another human and show some respect. Your not talking to a Canadian here, or a Moderate or a White Atheist if that is the case.

Your talking with chissler.



I am my own person, and if you want to fault me on something someone else said that may share my beliefs than shame on you. Painting members with the same brush? I have a paint brush for each member of ATS. Makes the day go alittle smoother.


Originally posted by HarlemHottie
If you can't debate a contentious issue without name-calling, maybe this isn't the place for you.


Well said. That is hitting the nail right on the ..


Originally posted by HarlemHottie
I'm really surprised that people are defending that kind of behovior.


Ahh nothing surprises me anymore. As long as it stays respectful I am open to a conversation going in any direction. By having a member defend the other side of the coin, makes the conversation that much better.

Think how boring ATS would be if every post was saying: Great Post! -- You're So Right! -- I Wish I had of Thought of That! Its nice to have those from time to time, but you need the critics.

[edit on 9-9-2006 by chissler]



posted on Sep, 9 2006 @ 01:05 PM
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Chissler. If you do that every time you write here than my hats off to you...
.

I try to treat everyone as an individual, and I am usually successful, not always though. That's the point I'm trying to make...we need to make conscious efforts to do so, its not an automatic thing, at least not for me. Especially when I can't see the person I am talking to...
. You would think it would actually make it easier, but you can't read body language, voice inflections, or any other subtle clue over the internet. That makes it very tough sometimes...especially when I disagree vehemently with someone.



posted on Sep, 9 2006 @ 01:41 PM
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Well rarely does a member really boil my blood with one post. I can normally develop an idea of a personality for members after reading so many of their posts. So your not a Liberal in my books, your just you. I am fairly good at remembering people, so when I come across members that have been on the board for awhile I can quickly gather who and what they are. Honestly you can hide who you are for awhile, but after so many posts the person inside you does sneak out.

So judge the person on their merit, and not some stereotype.



posted on Sep, 9 2006 @ 02:17 PM
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Originally posted by Majic
Maybe the best thing to do is what we've always done: leave it up to the discretion of members and staff to work out.

Instead of a blanket policy, maybe it's best if we just handle this on a case-by-case basis.


IMO, this IS the way to go. Blanket rules never do anything positive. They stifle the responsible people. They're a punishment to those who act with integrity and accountability.

Free expression is one of the most important facets of good discussion.

People are ALWAYS going to be offended. It's not something we can escape unless we want to narrow the discussions to flowers and candy. Someone's going to get hurt. And then that someone needs to take responsibility for his own feelings and move on.

There's no other place like ATS on the Internet. And it's like it is for a reason. Don't fix it if it ain't broken.


And, Majic, I love your intent here.


Edited for clarity.



[edit on 9-9-2006 by Benevolent Heretic]



posted on Sep, 9 2006 @ 03:37 PM
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You know that's, when all is said and done, probably the best way to handle it. Because Chissler is right...one can hide for a while but not forever.



posted on Sep, 9 2006 @ 05:19 PM
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I'll be the first to say bigots suck... er, or is that considered intolerance? Meh. I'll risk it. Bigots suck. There. I said it. I know it's not a popular opinion, but dangit, it's how I feel.

The real question is what constitutes bigotry versus incitement?

If Bubba the Bigot posts a message stating how we need to all rise up and kill X before they can do Z to Y, then I'd say that's trollbait and grounds for a warning, if not outright banning. In America we'd call that incitement, and it does not fall under the auspices of Freedom of Speech. It is, in fact, quite illegal.

If, however, Bubba says "X is a threat to Y because of Z" with less tact and consideration than some would like, then that is, unfortunately his right under Free Speech. People should have the right to be offended. Not everyone is going to get along with everyone else all of the time.

Though it may be one of our less savory traits, our differences and latent xenophobia as human beings has been one of the major driving forces in the evolution of ideology, philosophy, and theology. Overcoming it through rational discussion, rather than banning it, is how human beings have learned to grow into more humane beings. Forcing the detractors into silence will not help them grow, it will only stop them from sharing thoughts that must be addressed if their prejudices are to ever be overcome.

As much as I would love to see an ATS free of bigotry, I'd rather it be through convincing others to change their minds, rather than banning it.


(edit: reworded some stuff)

[edit on 9/9/2006 by thelibra]



posted on Sep, 9 2006 @ 07:44 PM
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I will agree that bigotry is bad. But I have a "deep intolerance", to put it mildly, for certain terrorist groups, and I refuse to give them any quarter. I never give them the benefit of the doubt, because they do not deserve it, imo. Does that make me a bigot?

On the other hand, one of the most effective ways to fight bigotry against legitimate(?) groups is to let the board police itself. I have never seen a statement such as, "All Jews are bad" or "All muslims are terrorists" go unchallenged. And, any such statements should be challenged. But a statement such as "All al Qaeda are terrorist murderers" is acceptable, imo. Hypocritical? I don't think so. Those members that want to support AQ can still do so; they are not being prohibited from doing so. But I won't.



posted on Sep, 9 2006 @ 08:04 PM
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Originally posted by chissler
As long as it stays respectful I am open to a conversation going in any direction. By having a member defend the other side of the coin, makes the conversation that much better.

I totally agree with everything you said here. I'm against back-patting, I think it distracts from a conversation. I grew up in a household where we debated policitics, religion, whatever, and disagreed, so I know how to disagree without hating anyone.

The instance I was referring to was a very specific example of disrespect. In fact, I could say the insult had a racial component. I didn't respond, but I complained. Yet, I still see that member all over the board. That, to me, was a problem.



posted on Sep, 9 2006 @ 08:15 PM
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Originally posted by seagull
HH. All too often, however, no matter the good intentions, personalities come into play, to the detriment of the entire discussion. You know this, having witnessed it on several threads currently ongoing.

Yes, I do, and of course personalities come into play, but when a member makes assumptions about my sex-life based on NOTHING (like I said before, I wasn't even participating in that thread, and I hadn't spoken with him extensively before), he should be called on it, publically, I think.

I'm not talking about a simple disagreement on an actual issue, I'm talking about personal insults. I thought we were all adults here....mostly, I mean. No offense to the young bucks.



posted on Sep, 9 2006 @ 08:17 PM
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Originally posted by HarlemHottie
The instance I was referring to was a very specific example of disrespect. In fact, I could say the insult had a racial component. I didn't respond, but I complained. Yet, I still see that member all over the board. That, to me, was a problem.


The same thing has happened to me. A member insulted me with a seriously blatant racial slur. And the member is all over the board. But I think sometimes we just have to let it go. Brush it off. Shake it out and realize that some people in the world have way different ideas about things than we do.

Racism is a special kind of bigotry and it's alive and well. Racism and bigotry exist here on ATS and in life. It's something we have to deal with. Sometimes we are the victims of racism and bigotry. Unfortunately, no one can really protect us from that.




posted on Sep, 9 2006 @ 08:25 PM
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Originally posted by Benevolent Heretic
The same thing has happened to me.


Respectfully, I have to disagree. In the issue I think you're talking about, you and the other party have had a lot of 'back-and -forth.' That's a different case altogether. I don't even know the person who insulted me, I may have spoken with him once. So, we have no real idealogical differences because, as I said, we haven't communticated that extensively. That's why I think his comment was directly motivated by my race and little else.



posted on Sep, 9 2006 @ 09:26 PM
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Originally posted by HarlemHottie
That's a different case altogether.


In my opinion, it doesn't really matter whether one knows a person or not. A racial attack is a racial attack. It makes no difference in the end. You and I and others here have suffered racial attacks. None is particularly easy to take.

I can't really make a judgment on the instance I think you're talking about because I cannot possibly know the intent of the member, but I'm not certain it was intended to be racial or intended to be an insult. I just don't know. I would agree, it wasn't respectful.

My point is that people exist (in real life and here on ATS) who have racist motivations and sometimes we get in the crosshairs. And sometimes no one can protect us. We have to deal with it.



posted on Sep, 9 2006 @ 09:54 PM
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Very well put BH

It really is a personal choice how to handle the inevitable.

Semper



posted on Sep, 9 2006 @ 11:11 PM
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Originally posted by Benevolent Heretic
My point is that people exist (in real life and here on ATS) who have racist motivations and sometimes we get in the crosshairs. And sometimes no one can protect us. We have to deal with it.

BH, since I feel like I know you, I'm sure that I'm mistaken, but you sound a little condescending. I'm a black woman: I know quite a bit about bigots and bigotry. In the real-world, however, I can deal with the problem myself, as long as I stay within the constraints of the law and society. Here, I have to abide by the T & C, so I can't handle it the way I normally would. If I have to play by those rules, so should everyone else. That's all I'm saying.



posted on Sep, 10 2006 @ 08:39 AM
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Originally posted by HarlemHottie
BH, since I feel like I know you, I'm sure that I'm mistaken, but you sound a little condescending.


You've said that before. Since you do know me, you know that I'm not being condescending. Not to you. You know I have a great deal of respect for you. I hold you in high regard, so I'm not condescending to you. It's pretty impossible considering how I feel about you.

How could I change what I said so as to not sound condescending? Is it the "we"? I will strive to speak in the first person when possible. My intent is to speak to you as "we". People. You and me and other ATS members. Not as I would speak to a 2nd grader.



In the real-world, however, I can deal with the problem myself, as long as I stay within the constraints of the law and society. Here, I have to abide by the T & C, so I can't handle it the way I normally would. If I have to play by those rules, so should everyone else. That's all I'm saying.


I feel the same way. I have expressed as much. We should all have to play by the same rules and on a level playing field. But I've found that we (you and I and the other members here) can't always count on that. And for me, I need to make that be ok. Maybe that's not the answer for everyone, but it's the one I choose.

If I operate in life thinking that it should always be fair, I will be greatly disappointed.

I have no doubt that you can deal with the problem here in a 'similar' manner as you do in real life. You have a lot more to draw from than most people I know. The constraints on ATS are different than society's, but in my experience, I'm finding that dealing with bigotry and ignorance can be accomplished within this ATS framework as well. I think being in a position to deal with real people and their real reactions is a great lesson and a strength and character-builder.

So I welcome the challenge.



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