- A Big Fat Rant About People Doing Precisely What They Bitch About Other People Doing.
And Utterly Failing To Notice.
This post was written at a time when a lot of people in the blogosphere seemed to like me and what I had to say, and didn’t mind publicly acknowledging that fact by putting me on their blogrolls.
After I wrote this post, and got this comment, I noticed that I stopped getting hits from some blogs which had previously had me on their blogroll, but now no longer did.
This continued for awhile. I noticed that none of the bloggers had any posts indicating that they’d understood what I was attempting to point out. They kept perpetrating the same behaviours, and committing as well as inciting those same transgressions. So I kept writing about it, trying to make it all clear.
- (and still not succeeding)
And then after I published this post, I noticed an additional chunk of blogs which used to refer people to me, also no longer had me on their blogrolls.
C’est la vie.
I kind of expected as much, but still, I felt disappointed that my efforts appeared to be so utterly fruitless.
I’m still on a few people’s blogrolls, and I still get a bunch of other hits, however they get here. I value very much that people come here to read regardless of whether I am on anybody’s blogroll or not.
- And for all of you, I am deeply appreciative. :)
My point is, this post was written when I still read and enjoyed the people and their blogs which I refer to in this post and others, and at a time when I still felt welcome in the kinky blogosphere.
I don’t feel so welcome in the kinky blogosphere anymore. And a lot of the positive feelings I expressed in this post towards members of that blogosphere, no longer apply.
Even though it irks me now to read myself saying things I no longer believe are true, those things were true then, so I’m leaving them in. Those things I said then which are no longer true now include:
- Admiration for the blogger I referenced
- My desire to write shorter posts (which was really only true then because the blogger I referenced told me I should, and I believed him)
I just wanted you all to know that.
Thank you for reading my blog.
ps: I was chuckling to myself reading my own protestations of how long this post was, when I think of some of my more recent ones, hehehe. :) And I was wondering to myself how I could possibly have believed this joker when I remember some of the lengths of his own posts.
Now, I have nothing against a good rant. Far be it for me to say it’s a bad thing to rant about something which isn’t good. I do that myself.
I do that lot, actually.
- Just in case it’s not absolutely crystal clear already, this post is about:
The problem with objecting to other people excluding, denigrating, dismissing, minimising and invalidating, when that same behaviour is exemplified in the objection
I am, in fact, objecting to hypocrism.
Just as an aside (as if I’d yet got into this post enough to have anything to get aside from), I’d like to observe that, while there are terms for sexual and gender prejudices against women, men, gays and lesbians, transsexuals, bisexuals, and heterosexuals, there doesn’t even seem to be a generally agreed defining term for prejudice against BDSM-ers.
- (I’d like to suggest “kinkophobia”.)
(heh, that sounds like an Irish name – “Bejaysus, it’s Kink O’Phobia!”)
(there also doesn’t seem to be a term for prejudice against polyamorous relationships, so I’d like to suggest “polyphobia” or “polyamophobia”)
Since this prejudice and intolerance against BDSM-ers is commonly perpetrated not only by many individuals and groups in the world at large, but also unthinkingly by many individuals within BDSM, it would seem there is an urgent need for such a term, so the prejudice can be identified, targeted, and included within implementation of anti-discrimination legislation.
I’ve found that trying to modify the erroneous perceptions of most adults is usually (not always) a waste of time. Most adults are perfectly capable of drawing their own conclusions, erroneous or not. Most adults would have already reached an equitable, unbiased view, based on objective facts, all by themselves, if they were in any way going to. Their opinions will not change based on me presenting them with facts which they already knew about and had decided to disregard.
Sometimes, when people express about the way they live their lives, and share that expression of how they live their lives, something happens. Something angry, sad and afraid happens. And most significantly, something blinkered happens.
Now, I totally get that anger thing. I mean, I consider myself to be an ethical person (not that I can think of anybody who doesn’t regard themselves as ethical, even bigots). And I get angry and speak out when I witness prejudice and intolerance. I try very hard to live my life in ways which totally eschew prejudiced and intolerant outlooks and behaviours.
But when some ethical people get really angry (or sad, or afraid, or some combination of all three) about certain excluding, prejudiced and intolerant outlooks and behaviours, then something blinkered seems to happen. I’ve been getting pretty angry myself at what was happening at these times. I’ve been seeing exclusion, prejudice and intolerance exhibited within the expressions speaking out against exclusion, prejudice and intolerance. But I haven’t really been able to express it clearly until now, because I was seeing it as either an incredibly general vague “Respect” thing, or else as lots of individual separate things.
And what was happening in these instances became very clear to me when I was reading Maymay‘s blog.
Let me be quite clear: I really like Maymay’s blog. I like Maymay, too. :) *waves to Maymay*
- Incidentally, when I linked my kvetch to Maymay’s blog, his comment was:
“That blog is a real find.”
I agree. :)
I admire Maymay’s writing, perspective, and style. I like that he is a submissive man who is masculine, intelligent, eloquent and brave. I like that he isn’t afraid to be who he is. I like his willingness to be who he is where everybody can see. I like his efforts to try to live according to his ethics and beliefs. And I like his refusal to accept other people’s limited ideas on how he’s supposed to be.
- (this does not, you may notice, interfere with my teensy bit of enjoyment I get from verbally trampling all over him. It may be a flaw in my character. I hope I can take this experience, and learn from it, and grow emotionally.)
(or, he can sue me, whatever.) ;)
Maymay has a series of rants up (which is great, I like rants), but it was this one which ended up leading to one of those ever-so-interesting revelations.
When I came to the part of that post which said
- “Is it just me, or is it smelling a little One True Way® in here all of a sudden?“
And that was the one which just put the lid on the biscuit tin with a big “clangggggggg“.
At that moment, I felt like some huge, creaky cogs started slowly turning in my mind, like one of those huge clocks in clock towers with the works made of metal, but housed in wood, you know?
I felt the large wheels clacking creakily onwards….. one……… two…….. three…….. four……. five……. clacks, and then a big “CLUNK“.
The penny dropped, the light bulb over my head went on, the bells in my mind went dingdingdingdingdingding, and I shouted “Eureka!!! whilst tearing down the street in the middle of the night dressed only in my Marvin The Martian slippers and a small dental appliance.
- (Ok, well, maybe I didn’t do the last one. But all the other ones happened, I swear)
I went back to see if the thoughts I’d just had were really supported by what I’d just read. I read that last post over again. I went backwards, and re-read this one, and this one, and this one, and this one.
And after all that, I knew the light bulbs and penny drops were supported, and I’d really read and noticed what I thought I had.
- Which was a bit disappointing.
But these were the same things I’d seen and disliked in a lot of other places without explicitly noticing what it was.
I must make it clear here that Maymay’s very well written and interesting blog is by no means the only blog, which expresses the behaviours I’m describing. And Maymay is not by a long shot the only person who does this either. I have encountered this behaviour absolutely all over the place. It’s really, really commonplace.
- (otherwise it’d be hardly be worth
I am using Maymay’s blog as an example, partly because it was what I was reading when I had my big clunky dingy shrieky revelation, and partly because there are a whole series of posts close together which provide excellent examples of what I’m describing.
- I must also admit to doing this partly because he’s an intelligent, eloquent, masculine, self-respecting ethical submissive man, whose writing I admire, (not to mention a fellow Mac user) and it turns me on just the tiniest bit to verbally ride a wee bit roughshod all over him.
sorry, Maymay. :)
I did warn him this post was coming. :p
I wrote elsewhere that I don’t like it when anybody negatively judges and condemns every member of a group of people based on arbitrary criteria such as their profession.
Sure, I agree with Maymay that it’s a powerfully negative thing for people to make vast generalisations which refer to everyone, and to act on those generalisations, when those generalisations do not in fact represent everyone. I believe that this is known as prejudice.
I also agree with Maymay that it’s a powerfully negative thing for people to hold inaccurate, uninformed, and negative opinions about individuals, and to act on those opinions, based on those individuals’ identification with gender, sexual orientation (which includes kink and BDSM), ethnic group, place of birth, age, or any other aspect which is outside their control. I believe that is known as intolerance.
- (for my own convenience, I’m going to use the term “submissive” in the below example, but equally the terms “dominant” and “switch” can be substituted [along with the related words])
More specifically, yes, I agree with Maymay that it’s a really crappy thing for people to publicise and support the idea that all submission, and therefore all submissives, are all kinds of [insert negative generalisation here].
Equally, I agree with Maymay that it’s a really crappy thing for one kind of submissive to minimise, invalidate, and dismiss another kind of submissive just because they don’t offer the kind of submission which is valuable and important to them in particular.
- But to express ideas of inclusion and tolerance, and to object to ideas of exclusion and intolerance, and then to perpetrate precisely what one is objecting to, is, in my book, right out of order, and just plain unacceptable.
In the world, there are some intelligent, interesting, eloquent people, who are ethical and try their best to live according to their own, very reasonable-sounding and inclusive ethical code. I think this is positive, productive and beneficial.
These people include prejudice, intolerance, exclusion, and behaviour which expresses these points of view as elements which they exclude from their ethical code. In my opinion this is positive, productive and beneficial.
When they see examples of prejudice, intolerance, exclusion, and related behaviours, these same people speak out and express disagreement and disapproval. I think this is definitely positive, productive and beneficial.
- In their expression of disagreement and disapproval for those prejudiced and intolerant outlooks and behaviours, something angry, sad, and/or fearful happens which seems to blinker them.
- These same intelligent, interesting, eloquent, ethical people then unwittingly begin to exhibit outlooks and behaviours which precisely reflect the very outlooks and behaviours for which they are expressing disagreement and disapproval.
- This is something which I regard as less positive, quite unproductive, and definitely detrimental.
And then they can be alerted to the fact that actually, in their intelligent, interesting, eloquent expression, they are hurting people in precisely similar ways to the way they feel they are being hurt by the behaviour they dislike in others.
Being intelligent, interesting, and eloquent people, they think they can see this, and so they say they can, thus acknowledging their awareness of their transgressions.
- So, after
- exhibiting precisely similar behaviour as that which they have just slated
- treating individuals in precisely the same ways as they object to being treated themselves
- having apparently acknowledged awareness of their behaviour
they disregard this fact as if it were unimportant and irrelevant (!!)
I find this amazing, and completely unproductive.
- I added this section, up to “Going To Get A Doughnut”, on 23 October, 2008.
I have come to the conclusion that no matter how much they say that they appreciate that they are perpetrating precisely that which they are denouncing, they cannot possibly be aware of this, because to knowingly transgress one’s own ethical code makes no sense to me. The only way I can make it out is if
- they are unaware that the ethical code they are actually following contradicts the ethics they are claiming to espouse, and/or
- they are unaware that they are breaking their ethical code
Although I feel tempted to believe that all hypocrisers are manipulative fucks who deliberately say one thing and do another, in my heart I feel that most hypocrisers really are genuinely unaware of their hypocrising.
I suspect they get round this conflict and contradiction by nodding knowingly to themselves, and thinking vaguely:
- I’m ok, I’m not doing what they’re doing, because this is different.
But I think what they really are expressing is:
- What I do is different because they started it! Them doing it to me is wrong. But me defending myself by doing the same back to them is right and good. I’m righteous, because I’m pointing out their faults to the world, which is a Good Thing™. I’m the oppressed minority, so my transgressions are irrelevant, and everything I do in my own defense is OK.
When they stop, I’ll stop.
Needless to say, I think that stance has all the effectiveness and productive benefit of children squabbling in the sandpit. I think that using logical statements such as “I wasn’t as bad as them!!” and “They started it!!!” are unlikely to be very effective or useful in logical debates.
- Successful adult strategies for achieving resolutions to interpersonal conflict often include taking responsibility for one’s own self, feelings and behaviour.
- Successful conflict resolution is seldom accomplished by simply blaming one’s behaviour on other people.
I’m not really sure how this blinkered something happens. Oh, I have my theories about it, which are long and rambly and which are themselves probably worth a post (or two, or nine, or sixty-three) featuring them all by themselves. But I’ve resolved to try to post shorter posts from now on as my previous ones have been getting a bit out of control, length-wise.
So, I’m going to omit the theories from this post in the interests of brevity and coherence.
- (you may all cheer now) ;)
Anyhow, I’m not really sure what to do about this problem. Well, actually, I do have a few ideas, but they’re long and involved and are built on my long and rambly theories which I have decided not to include in this post.
- (perhaps I should do a post entirely about what I’m not going to include in it. I think that would also somehow be a really long post)
What I do know is, that ethical people get really angry about some excluding, prejudiced, intolerant expression when perpetrated by others against them or people they like. This is especially true when there is evidence and examples of people actually responding to these expressions, espousing them themselves, and living their lives according to the prejudiced, intolerant ideas expressed.
But they dismiss as unimportant and irrelevant when they perpetrate precisely the same behaviours.
- So I feel really bewildered and rantful when people:
- Denounce those behaviours which are repugnant to them
- Themselves perpetrate that very behaviour which they so loathe and detest
- Themselves incite others to reproduce that behaviour which they regard with such repugnance and contempt
- Admit apparent knowledge of and culpability for their own transgressions
- Dismiss their own transgressing behaviour as unimportant and/or irrelevant
According to my own ethical code, I must, in turn, speak out about this.
Some of these same ethical, intelligent, eloquent people commit these crimes of prejudice and intolerance in the name of acceptance and inclusion, and target pro doms. And it was this which I was defending against when I published my rant about attitudes towards pro doms post.
But whether the targets are pro doms, certain types of submissive, or albino pygmy monkeys, the transgressions are the same. Acceptance and inclusion means acceptance and inclusion of, and respect for everybody, without exception. This includes individuals who may, in your opinion, be transgressing your rules for respectful behaviour.
- I do not feel that it is ethically possible to practice acceptance, inclusion, and respect towards people selectively. Acceptance, inclusion, and respect must apply to everybody. Because otherwise, the attitudes still qualify as prejudiced, intolerant, and excluding.
I totally appreciate that sometimes, people are truly not aware that they are repeating the very behaviours they condemn in others. I don’t like this very much, but it happens, and there isn’t a lot anybody can do about this. The people who are truly unaware, are likely to respond, when this is pointed out to them, with a response such as:
- “Oh, no, but that’s different.”
Different, my arse.
(sorry, I let my inner rantfest get away from me for a moment there)
And there really isn’t anything anybody can say in the face of such illogic. So that’s usually when I wander off to have a doughnut.
So, in the interests of (a failing attempt at) brevity, I’ll conclude this with the news that everybody wandered off to get doughnuts, and nobody ever was hypocritical or intolerant again.
This is Lady Lubyanka, reporting from the scene of The Pot Calling The Kettle Black. Now back to Curved Nicely in the studio. Curved?
“Thank you Lady Lubyanka. Now we go over to Wank Hornball for the weather.”