Skip to main content

View Diary: Gay Americans & 9/11: On a Queer Day (214 comments)

Comment Preferences

  •  Like you, I don't think it's ok to sell us down (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    theyrereal

    the river; it's seriously messed up, for many reasons.

    Where gays win, though, is not by rejecting people with bigoted beliefs but by engaging them.  We win by turning what you would call "bigots" into "non-bigots" and you do that by having a conversation not by name-calling.

    Where I object to casually calling someone a bigot is that a). it has no utility and b). there IS, in my opinion, a serious definitional difference here, at least to me.

    You don't gain any mileage from just calling someone a bigot because they evince beliefs that are wicked and self-serving, because you don't know what is behind that, and it wouldn't matter if you did.  Perhaps it's just ignorance or a person not having thought their position fully through.  The only possible way you can make headway with that person is to draw attention to the nastiness of the behavior ITSELF, and while that takes more effort than just calling someone a bigot, I believe it's more effective in winning them over.

    Definitionally, to me there is a difference between someone who casually supports evil because they either don't know any better or haven't thought through their positions, and someone who openly displays outright hatred and doesn't want to discuss it.

    Speculate as we might about theyrereal's motives in saying what he said, the problem is we don't actually know he wants to "sell us down the river" (or that he really thought about it that way), nor can we know for sure until and unless he gives us more evidence.

    So, ultimately I guess my position on this is "utilitarian".  I want what is best for gay people without hurting anyone else.  That is best done by convincing people when they're wrong and why, and even appealing to their own self interest, which you and I both agree is harmed by setting aside a group for specially bad treatment based merely on public opinion .. I try to point out where that can backfire on them in the future and I don't think I'm wrong to do so.

    You have been very effective in this diary (and even the above comment) pointing out all the faults in theyrereal's position, and he has come up with other excuses all of which have been slammed down heartily with reason and logic, even as his points make both of us angry.  Our restraint is admirable, don't you think?

    I just think that name-calling is the easy way out and you haven't even tried to do that, yourself.

    Help keep America a one party state - vote Republican! (-6.25, -6.92)

    by AndyS In Colorado on Mon Sep 11, 2006 at 03:29:58 PM PDT

    [ Parent ]

    •  Andy (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      AndyS In Colorado

      Seriously, pretending isn't going to yeild the dialogue you want. Honesty, is the first step. I recently wrote an article on this subject. That the more honest we are- the better chance we have of achieving our goals. The more hidden we are- the more the right wins. Truth, afterall, is there enemy. I am not speculating about this person. I am reading what he has written, and making a judgement on that. Trying to make people feel good about themselves isn't the solutions. Being honest with them is. I explained to him or her why they are being bigotted. If they are capable- of listening- which is also required for a conversation, by the way, then they will try to understand why this is the case. The gay movement has moved far faster than most social movements because of honesty, and refusing to let peo feel good as they politely screw us over. Bigotry isn't name calling- it's like me saying I am gay. it's naming what a thing is. That peo can't handle that aspect of themselves. Or it doesn't make them feel good- I know we are supposed to be able to get more with honey than vinegar, but the truth is- in real life, you get just as much, and sometimes more with the stick than the carrot.

      Fear is not a winning strategy.

      by bruh1 on Mon Sep 11, 2006 at 03:40:40 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  What is the difference, semantically, (0+ / 0-)

        between what you are saying and what I am saying, though, regarding the behavior?

        I don't think I am trying to make this person feel good about what he has written.  

        But saying "You're trying to feel good about yourself while you politely screw us over" imparts much more information than simply saying "you're a bigot" don't you think?

        Contrary to what you think, I'm not adopting a "honey attracts more flies than vinegar" mantra.  

        And that, ultimately, is my goal, to communicate with people.  I'm not pretending, I just want to get through.

        Though I'll give it some more thought as to you're position.  If you look at my past posts, I'm a big fan of calling a spade a spade, so I'm swimming a bit against the tide, here ;)

        Help keep America a one party state - vote Republican! (-6.25, -6.92)

        by AndyS In Colorado on Mon Sep 11, 2006 at 03:48:13 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  okay (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Albatross, AndyS In Colorado

          i just wanted to make sure we weren't talking about somehow excuse this guy for what he is saying- because at base its pretty bad, but I see you are just talking specific wording- not specific meaning. at base, my issue with him-e ven if this weren't a gay issue, is that his comment is lacking in political values- and makes me question who next he would be willing to throw off the boat should there be politically heat? why not illegal immigrants- they aren't liked? what about the poor? etc- it can become a slippery slope and moral abyss to take his route. i know you aren't agreeing with it, but i want to one again- if he is reading this- get him to understand where his sort of arguments leads.

          Fear is not a winning strategy.

          by bruh1 on Mon Sep 11, 2006 at 03:57:30 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I would recommend this post a hundred times (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Albatross

            if I could.

            You are SO RIGHT about this.  And what's more, you are right because Democrats tend to do this reflexively.

            Many Democrats DO try to throw spanish-speakers (not just illegal immigrants) off the boat.  And that of course includes anyone perceived as being weak, including the poor, gays, women, ad nauseum.

            It IS a *"moral abyss"*!  Do you mind if I use that?  It's the best wording I've heard in a long time regarding the centrist Democrat's "win at any cost including the truth" ideology.

            Help keep America a one party state - vote Republican! (-6.25, -6.92)

            by AndyS In Colorado on Mon Sep 11, 2006 at 04:02:22 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  sure go ahead (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              AndyS In Colorado

              my thing lately i have been thinking of simple phrases that describe the other sides character or ours, or the situation:

              ie,

              "moral abyss" to describe triangulation

              "truth is their enemy" to describe what is really at stake for the republicans- if they lose this year- they lose control o f what is 'truth' That's why every candidate should be saying t his to them- "the truth is your enemy." like a mantra because its a perfect frame for anything t he Dems say next.

              'perception is our war' is a phrase i use to describe the flaw in many left leaning groups. they don't understand that wars are won or lost over perception. Iraq was lost when we lost the perception war with the insurgency. we win or lose elections over perception not issues- perceptions of our character.

              Fear is not a winning strategy.

              by bruh1 on Mon Sep 11, 2006 at 04:17:47 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  mmm .. though I'd really say (0+ / 0-)

                the perception war over Iraq was lost with the Republicans, not the "insurgents".

                Anyone with half a brain could have seen (and did see) that warring with the Arabs over non-existent exingencies would lead to a bottomless pit of lives, money, time and vision.

                I wish I could dig up the post on Yahoo several years ago (before the war started) where I said that the war with Iraq would cost 75 billion dollars and lead to nothing, and the replies from right wingers who said I was insane for the cost figures at least.

                I am going to go out on a limb here and say something politically incorrect.

                The insurgency in Iraq is a REBELLION.  They are doing nothing differently than our own rebels did (or would have done) in the American Revolution.

                The bottom line is that in Iraq we have created the ugliness -- when it was Saddam Hussein the blame for the barbarism could be laid on him, but no more.

                Whatever the situation in Iraq was, and is, it was not our war to fight. It is American hubris that will lead us down a bottomless pit of despair, and even maybe civil war and chaos HERE.

                Until Americans realize they do not run the world, we are in for more.  Strap yourself in.

                Help keep America a one party state - vote Republican! (-6.25, -6.92)

                by AndyS In Colorado on Mon Sep 11, 2006 at 04:27:21 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  I dont disagree with that (0+ / 0-)

                  I think  one of the biggest issues I have with a lot of issues with my fellow Ameircans is our hubris. There are others a) a focus on hedonism (pleasure at all cost) b) a lack of understanding of history etc. But hubris is a biggie. That we think of war as a Rambo movie is a cliche, but it's also still very true.I am actually pretty moderate. i am not against per se military action where it proves necessary. I am for or was for the powell doctrine back before he went crazy and joined with bush. All of it was about looking carefully at a situation and making the best choice that could be made. Most of the time that wasn't to go to war  just because you thought you were the biggest bully on the block. Anyway, this is all OT.

                  Fear is not a winning strategy.

                  by bruh1 on Mon Sep 11, 2006 at 04:41:51 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  What about isolation? (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    Texas Blue Dot

                    I think this is one of the biggest problems facing us.

                    Americans don't have to be neighbors with each other anymore.  We have the internet, and video games, and cable TV.  The unity of our society is dissolving.

                    Help keep America a one party state - vote Republican! (-6.25, -6.92)

                    by AndyS In Colorado on Mon Sep 11, 2006 at 04:52:26 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  thats a part of the hedonism (0+ / 0-)

                      I think we think of being happy in individual terms. The biggest computer, the best car, etc. That doesn't leave much room for their being an us. The culture of hedonism I think leads to the process you refer to as isolation. When you got christians talking about God and heaven like its an amusement park you know something is off. Not that they haven't bbeen screwed up in the past. They have. But this sort of hedonism is crazy. i use the word here hopefully as it is meant philosophically. Namely it refers to the pursuit of pleasure above all else. Even when it doesn't make sense. it in many ways doesn't anymore. In philisophical terms- one can indeed be unhappy even while pursuing perceived pleasure because its a short term rather than long term pleasure. it's interesting we are having this conversation. I have in the last couple of years started to think of building relationships by looking for peo who share my basic values of caring for each other. etc. Really even the stuff about gay peo is about instant gratification. Peo dont go beyond short term think toward thinking "what is good for the polity" anymore. instead they merely ask "what do I believe.' Pastor Dan and I- who I occasionally argument with- what of the issues I have with a Christian left is the mentality of why such a thing shoudl exist. Often it is said that it is because the Christian self can not be left at the political door. To which, at least for me, this is dangerous- because it doesn't require any civic virtues anymore per se. Anyway I hope my ramblings make sense.

                      Fear is not a winning strategy.

                      by bruh1 on Mon Sep 11, 2006 at 06:31:49 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                    •  one can even see hedonism (0+ / 0-)

                      by the way in bizzare things like Walmart- peo will go out and buy from wallmart even if they know its cost them their job. if that is not a perverse moral situation then I dont know what is

                      Fear is not a winning strategy.

                      by bruh1 on Mon Sep 11, 2006 at 06:33:05 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

            •  I am thinking of writing a diary on this subject (0+ / 0-)

              I find most democrats are too intellectual. I am going from being a lawyer to becoming a filmmaker and I had to deprogram myself from over thinking and back toward a simple but effective language that compells people even if they dont know why. I think the big flaw for our side is we talk a good game  until we actually have to talk to people. For example, with a Republican- i always say something with force- no waivering. I always also use their own arguments against them to prove my point. If it's Katrina- I say "for a party of personality responsibilit, you are certainly taking none here." etc

              Fear is not a winning strategy.

              by bruh1 on Mon Sep 11, 2006 at 04:21:18 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site