Tuesday, 30 March 2010

Seen on the Net

Firstly, a reminder in a comment of a wonderful site : Derailing for Dummies : A small extract:

If You Won't Educate Me How Can I Learn

Whilst seemingly simple on the surface, there is some intertwining subtext embedded within this one.

First of all, you’re placing responsibility for your education back onto the Marginalised Person™. As they are obviously engaged with these issues, and care about them, they are hopeful that Privileged People® may one day start listening and taking onboard what they have to say. By placing responsibility to educate in their hands, you tug at this yearning. You may even successfully make many question themselves and their selfish expectations that you utilise the hundreds upon hundreds of resources on the subject available to you as a Privileged Person®! After all, anyone who expects you to be able to research a topic by yourself also clearly expects you to be far more of a functioning adult than you're acting!
By insisting you can only learn if they right then and there sacrifice further hours of time going over the same ground they have so often in the past, you may also make them give up and go away altogether, enabling you to win by default.

But further, you give the impression that you really want to learn, but they’re holding you back! That’s right, using this tactic you can suggest that full understanding is what you crave - you want to be a better, more connected and compassionate person - but it’s not your fault! Nobody ever gave you the education! And now that someone is here who is so obviously qualified, they’re denying you your Privilege® given right to have everything you want handed to you on a platter!

Which brings us to another key component of this argument - it is very important, in conversations with Marginalised People™, to constantly remind them that you are, indeed, Privileged®. By demonstrating your belief that Marginalised People™ should immediately gratify your every whim, you remind them of their place in society. After all, they’re not there to live lives free of discrimination and in happy, independent and fulfilling ways! Please! Marginalised People™ exist for your curiosity and to make you generally feel better about your place in society and don’t let them forget it!

Point one to you!
A trap for the unwary - not to be the victim of it, but to inadvertantly be guilty of it onesself.

I'm immune to this one by the way. I don't actually mind educating, I quite enjoy it.

On to a fabulous piece of writing - though I personally believe that hatred is counter-productive. If someone is worth hating, they're usually worth neutralising. For that one should remain cool, calm, collected and unemotional - as one launches the missile that will take them out. For lesser threats, the verbal equivalent of a surgical strike may be adequate. In the hands of a true master, venomous wit can be truly poetic, though good examples are few. This one's possibly the best I've seen in recent times, at least the equal of Ambrose Bierce or Samuel Clemens at their best, and is from Ed Morrow:
I urge any and all to hate you and your kind, to loathe you, to taste bile at the thought of you, to shudder at your approach and rejoice at your departing, to see your shadow and draw back as from a viper. May your children hate you, your neighbors hate you, your mom, dad and Aunt Ida hate you. May your dog and his fleas hate you. I urge all people to band together into societies, clubs and fraternal associations to hate you. I beg them to relentlessly revile you, to rename fungal diseases and offal-eating insects after you, to, when they step in something loathsome, look at their shoe bottom and think of you. I urge the world’s artists to illustrate their hatred of you in paintings, sculpture, and, dare I say it, cartoons. May they be joined by the world’s writers whom I implore to write epics of hatred of you, the world’s musicians to compose songs of hatred of you, and the world’s dancers to choreograph interpretive dances of hatred of you. May Wal-Mart sell inexpensive T-shirts and coffee mugs embellished with “I H8 [insert your picture here].” ... At Christmastime, may the citizens of communities all around the world gather together in their public spaces, join hands in great circles, smile upon each other, and, while swaying rhythmically, harmoniously chant “We Hate (your name)! We Hate (your name)!” I beseech all the creatures that walk the land, all the fish that swim in the sea, and all the birds that flit through the sky to hate you. May the dirt beneath your feet hate you. May burning hot hatred of you grow till it provides an economical substitute for fossil energy. May amoebae evolve enough wit to hate you. If there be life on other planets, may it construct complex vessels and span the vasty depths of cold space to land in your back yard and sneer at you through your windows. If there is an afterlife, may all the departed, be they gazing down from Heaven, glaring up from Hell, or peering sideways from Purgatory, hate you. May every generation till the end of time hate you. And, if mankind becomes extinct, may the last learned men, before they, too, fade away, devise a self-perpetuating automaton to carry on hating you through the long, long eons till the very heat death of the universe. Then, I suppose, we can, wherever our spirits find final rest, stop hating you and just resent you.
Now there is a true master of the English Language. My rather abbreviated reply:
Ed – don’t hold back like that. Tell us how you *really* feel.
I intend using it myself - with attribution of course, so have made the few minor changes needed to make it all-purpose rather than specifically tailored to a particular individual. The sheer Artistry is far too good to waste on just one man.


Anonymous said...

you might want to add the following to your "venomous wit" list. http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0069825/quotes

Lloyd Flack said...

One thing to avoid if you are trying to educate is anything that rightly or wrongly sounds like cant. People are likely to not pay much attention if you do. I thinking of phrases like "cis-sexual privilege".

Actually any talk about what should be normal entitlements as privilege is a bad idea. You are not seeking preventives for yourselves. Rather you are seeking to claim your entitlements the same as everyone else.

MgS said...

Ed Morrow is grossly exaggerating the situation in Canada ... much like Ms. Coulter and the extremists who brought her to Canada in the first place.

These morons have confused 'freedom of speech' with 'freedom of speech without consequences'.

Battybattybats said...

Off-topic comment here Zoe, so i hope you'll forgive me but i wanted to draw your attention to a problematic state government ad campain that appears to deliberatly use prejudice in order to propagate an unrelated road safety message which i mention on my blog and have relevant links there. Sorry to make an off-topic post.

jessie_c said...

Here's a quote from a much wiser and far more admirable American:

"The freedoms we are guaranteed mean you have a right to be wrong and to engage in bad taste. But the flip side of "freedom" is "responsibility." Similarly, "free speech" used responsibly adds immensely to the well-being of a society. Used irresponsibly it can lead to divisiveness, intolerance and a breakdown of societal order. Sometimes we learn that lesson the hard way.

-Bruce Maiman"

Ed is being incredibly irresponsible. He should be pitied, not admired. His words should be forgotten, not enshrined. The world needs less of his and Anne Coulter's kind of hatred, not more.