Defending myself against some rather surprising allegations. October 20, 2005 6:54 AM   Subscribe

Defending myself against some rather surprising allegations.
posted by leapingsheep to MetaFilter-Related at 6:54 AM (245 comments total)

You came across as rather concieted and prissy in your original comment. Coming in here to whine about a negative response to that does nothing to counter that impression.
posted by jonmc at 7:05 AM on October 20, 2005


leapingsheep, have you been here long???????

That was extremely mild. Bringing it here? Well, I have a feeling you'll wish you didn't.
posted by konolia at 7:08 AM on October 20, 2005


Sheep, I thought you were wrong in that thread, but not all that bad. So I pass on this advice as a friend: Do not read the rest of this thread.
posted by LarryC at 7:13 AM on October 20, 2005


This is a lame call-out, but it shines in comparison to your first comment in that thread, in which you use your own judgmental righteousness to cast aspersions not only on anon's boyfriend, but also on anon for not reacting with a shudder to his touch. Your first comment sucked so badly it was almost in need of a call-out itself. Given all the flinching and shuddering you must do on a daily basis, I would expect it would be hard for you to have enough experience of life to offer anyone advice.
posted by OmieWise at 7:14 AM on October 20, 2005


Anonymous's boyfriend spends a large amount of time hanging out with bigots for fun. He has dragged her into spending large amounts of time with them as well. She has asked how she should deal with them, or if the relationship is doomed.
I don't want to talk about anonymous specifically because she isn't going to jump in to give any more details, but I feel that as a matter of self respect a woman should not be with a man like that.

I have friends with totally opposite political views and opinions than me, but I'd think myself a bigot if I considered that a good reason not to be their friend.
posted by wackybrit at 6:08 AM PST on October 20 [!]


I wouldn't. A person's values and how they act on them are the most important thing about a person; they are entirely different than skin color, which is superficial and unchosen.

One personality flaw doesn't nullify a person's worth.
Some don't. Having a horrible laugh or a tendency to be late all the time don't nullify a person's self worth. But some do, such as believing in genocide or nuclear war.


Uh.. just because someone might be friends with a racist or bigot doesn't mean that person is also a racist or bigot.

Friends are chosen. Choosing to spend a lot of time with someone who is not only racist, but has embraced racism as a large part of his personal identity simply does not reflect well on someone. He may not be rasist, but he apparently doesn't mind being around someone who cracks nigger jokes once in awhile.

it's called being human. maybe one day you'll understand.
posted by andrew cooke at 5:32 AM PST on October 20 [!]

Yes, well, here I am giving hard but true advice to a perfect stranger who may be a little head over heels to be thinking of her long-term well being. I consider that humane.

Anyone with a Confederate flag should be, what, castrated? Sent to an offshore island? Turned into mulch?

Um, no... But we aren't exactly talking about being polite when we bump into one another in town here. It's rather different to be close friends with someone than to just avoid conflict with them in order to keep the peace.

I'm glad you and your friends are so right-thinking and perfect
Of course I didn't claim anything like that. But I do choose friends whose values and behavior I admire and am entertained by.
posted by leapingsheep at 7:16 AM on October 20, 2005


Anyone who is friends with a racist is a racist. Guilt by association? In the court of ethics, unlike the court of law, absolutely.

In this delightful culture of moral relativism many of us would rather be liked than be ethical. Silence implies consent.

I'm a big fan of conceit and prissiness when it comes to intolerance toward racism. jonmc sets a different standard. Good to know.
posted by ewkpates at 7:17 AM on October 20, 2005


I didn't mean for the first comment to sound prissy or judgemental. I meant it as a question for anon to ask herself as a matter of reflection on the situation. If it was just a matter of poor wording, that is one thing. But she (anyone) should respect herself enough to be with someone a little more discerning.
posted by leapingsheep at 7:19 AM on October 20, 2005


OmieWise has a point. Who does not have "distasteful persons" in their lives? My Grandma was a bigoted Christian biddy; should I have auditioned for a replacement? "Wanted: one Grandma. Must be PC."
posted by davy at 7:21 AM on October 20, 2005


I'm a big fan of conceit and prissiness when it comes to intolerance toward racism. jonmc sets a different standard. Good to know.

*pins good citizen medal on ewkpates*

Really, oppressed people everywhere are sleeping sooundly because of your self-sacrificingserving gesture.

Getting sniify and offended (NTM shunning people) may make you but it dosen't do much to actually change anything. And your "different standard," retort tells me that you're far more concerned with feeling like the most righteous person in the room, anyway.
posted by jonmc at 7:21 AM on October 20, 2005


"may make you feel better about yourself," damn typos.
posted by jonmc at 7:22 AM on October 20, 2005


Poorly worded and accusatory indeed. But I think the intentions were well-meant. It's AskMe, and advice varies. Nothing to get too excited over.

And yes, this MetaTalk is entirely unnecessary, although it will surely be entertaining.
posted by agregoli at 7:22 AM on October 20, 2005


and another thing Omiewise - I have a soft spot for the hypocrisy of those who righteously condemn those who righteously condemn.

You seem to have abandoned your faculty for judgement and critical thinking. Again, good to know.
posted by ewkpates at 7:23 AM on October 20, 2005


Who does not have "distasteful persons" in their lives? My Grandma was a bigoted Christian biddy; should I have auditioned for a replacement? "Wanted: one Grandma. Must be PC."
Family is not chosen. Friends are.
posted by leapingsheep at 7:23 AM on October 20, 2005


What was alleged, exactly?
posted by Kwantsar at 7:23 AM on October 20, 2005


You seem to have abandoned your faculty for judgement and critical thinking. Again, good to know.

Or merely had an obvious epiphany about glass houses and stones, sinners and stone-casting, mote and specks. Y'know all those corny-ass warnings about hypocrisy.
posted by jonmc at 7:25 AM on October 20, 2005


What was alleged, exactly?
That I'm not human, and a prig that stands out among the prigs, for example.
posted by leapingsheep at 7:25 AM on October 20, 2005


jon, jon, my poor soul, you've missed the flip side. It's not that I'm concerned with feeling like the most righteous person in the room - I'm concerned with feeling that room is full of the unrighteous.
posted by ewkpates at 7:27 AM on October 20, 2005


grow up. i';m too busy to deal with this crap.
posted by andrew cooke at 7:28 AM on October 20, 2005


It's not that I'm concerned with feeling like the most righteous person in the room - I'm concerned with feeling that room is full of the unrighteous.

Statements like these back up my contention that anally PC people are basically fundamentalists without the cool hocus pocus and with worse music.
posted by jonmc at 7:29 AM on October 20, 2005


leapingsheep writes "But she (anyone) should respect herself enough to be with someone a little more discerning."

Yeah, this is exactly why your comment in thread was so lame and why the ones you've added here are equally disturbing. You seem to assume a very cut and dried approach to these issues, one that ignores the complexity of humanity. In addition, you suggest that what's at stake is anon's self-worth and self-respect, but you have no basis for supposing that she's hanging around with this guy because she has low self-respect. By repeatedly raising it as an issue (both there and here), rather than simply addressing the question she asked, you put yourself in the position of right-thinking saint who's got all their ducks in a perfect row. In other words, rather than addressing her as another person, you're addressing her as someone to be taught a lesson, and not simply an informational lesson, but one about her own sense of self-worth. If it wasn't weak before, your position seems to be that it should be. You protest that you're just working for the good, but in fact, you're working to make anon feel badly about her choices.

leapingsheep writes "I don't want to talk about anonymous specifically because she isn't going to jump in to give any more details"

Except your comments are about anon specifically. About her self-worth, about her self-respect, about her failure when she doesn't shudder at her BF's touch. Perhaps if you make her feel badly enough she'll see the error of her ways? Bullshit. That's what's annoying to me about what you've posted.
posted by OmieWise at 7:30 AM on October 20, 2005


I think it's absolutely ridiculous to "cut out" friends simply because they have different values than you. Specifically when these values relate to race, because being able to acknowledge different races and cultures and making decisions based upon their characteristics is not only human, but very smart.

For instance, if my friend refuses to hire people based on race, I would make that an issue for he/she and me. I would attempt, as a friend, to show the error of their ways. My friend and I would gain nothing if I simply walked away from the relationship. We'd both lose as friends and he/she would continue their negative practices. Only when we maintain a relationship do we have influence over people and their actions.

OTOH, if that same friend refused to marry out of their culture or race, I'd be hard-pressed to make a good argument, because a lifetime committment to someone sometimes requires the notion that we'd like to have similar cultural backgrounds. I don't consider that racism; small-minded, perhaps, but that's my value judgment and not something that I can impose on othes. My "claim for diversity" is a rule I've created for myself and not based on anti-racist ideas.

I think my point is that racism has many different forms and being near it can sometimes help control and influence its negative outcomes. Further, what we (or society) sometimes perceives as racism is not that at all, but more of a tribalism that is allowed, that is fair, and is only a negative value for those who think that diversity is the only "good value" in race relations.
posted by SeizeTheDay at 7:33 AM on October 20, 2005


And what OmieWise said.
posted by agregoli at 7:34 AM on October 20, 2005


ewkpates-
You could lose the tone which suggests that this is some sort of test case for right thinking. Perhaps if you read my comment above you'll see that my concern isn't so much with the advice that anon should look for another boyfriend (I don't really have an opinion on that, which might be good to know), but with leapingsheep's attempts to shame her into making a different choice. Also, and I don't think that this is beside the point, I never would have said a thing about this if leapingsheep hadn't brought it here. I'm not hunting for conflict, but if ls want's an opinion on the issue (which the evidently do) then I'll provide one.
posted by OmieWise at 7:36 AM on October 20, 2005


Omiewise, I didn't just go up to her on the street and start lecturing her. She asked for advice, and part of her question was whether the relationship is doomed.

I think anyone's choice of partner is a combination of their values and their self respect. The choice of a partner amounts to a person's deciding what is ideal, and how close to that they can come. Do you disagree?
posted by leapingsheep at 7:37 AM on October 20, 2005


That I'm not human, and a prig that stands out among the prigs, for example.

Well, odds are good that you're a human (and I doubt that andrew cooke seriously suggested otherwise), and you are indeed a prig, so what's the problem again?
posted by Kwantsar at 7:38 AM on October 20, 2005


The choice of a partner amounts to a person's deciding what is ideal,

HAHAHAHA!

I think I shall point and laugh some more.

HAHAHAHA!

What's the air like on your planet?
posted by jonmc at 7:39 AM on October 20, 2005


You guys all wear wife beaters, don't you?
posted by selfnoise at 7:39 AM on October 20, 2005


I thought both you and andrew could have been a little more helpful to anon, but neither one of you crossed my threshhold for total bullshit and none of those comments were excessively flagged Generally it's a good idea in AskMetafilter to stay away from just trashing the questioner if you're not going to follow-up with something that might be useful to their conundrum. We have incredibly limited information about anon's boyfriend and since she clearly likes him, saying "His lack of respectable principles is revolting and unattractive." seems to sort of miss the point that she's already dating him, most likely does find him attractive and not revolting, and is asking for advice, given what she already said. If you think the relationship is doomed, feel free to tell her, just try to leave out some of the eye-rolling tone.

The reason racism and bigotry are such a conundrum is that we can't just go through life avoiding people who we disagree with [racists and bigots can't, people who aren't racists and bigots also can't] and anon's question sort of touches on a part of that larger issue. AskMe becomes less helpful when people feel like they can't use it to ask complicated or touchy questions without getting disparaged for their ideas. I'm not saying you shouldn't feel free to disagree with the questioner [see "I want to dye my cat" or "I want hotel workers to stop parking in the school spaces" for good examples of people doing that] just try to be constructive.
posted by jessamyn at 7:40 AM on October 20, 2005


Man. I don't know. I married a person I respect, and I only associate with people I respect. I must be on Mars or something... (looks out window) nope, nope. I guess its you.
posted by ewkpates at 7:42 AM on October 20, 2005


That wasn't a typo jonmc, that was a blackout.
posted by bouncebounce at 7:42 AM on October 20, 2005


ewkpates, you are obviously more concerned with "winning" an "argument," than actually listening, so consider yourself officially placed in my pay-no-find file.
posted by jonmc at 7:45 AM on October 20, 2005


How do we know which cases are test cases for right thinking? And what are the consequences either way if we guess wrong?
posted by ewkpates at 7:45 AM on October 20, 2005


again with the miscomprehension jon, sorry to say. I'm not concern with "winning arguments" but with "which arguments win". It's a small difference... but it does involve an interest in truth...
posted by ewkpates at 7:47 AM on October 20, 2005


*hands ewkpates some turtle wax for his halo*

keep telling yourself that.
posted by jonmc at 7:49 AM on October 20, 2005


Agregoli please stop being reasonable. This is MetaTalk and there's no place for that here. Make with the drama and hysteria or leave.
posted by Ryvar at 7:53 AM on October 20, 2005


MetaFilter: Entirely unnecessary, although it will surely be entertaining.
posted by Duncan at 7:53 AM on October 20, 2005


*giggles* *hands jon some balm for the scars from his many moral/ethical compromises*

let me know if you want to join the mailing list for my newsletter "self respect through personal integrity".
posted by ewkpates at 7:55 AM on October 20, 2005


You big baby.
While I generally agree with The Beat and TMBG on the topic of "racist friends," you said your piece in the most highfalutin' tone you could manage. Moral outrage is fine for typin', but it helps very little in real life.
And of COURSE you know that Jonmc is going to champion the redneck, the white-socked and the blue label beer. That's, like, his job or something.
posted by klangklangston at 7:56 AM on October 20, 2005


let me know if you want to join the mailing list for my newsletter "self respect through personal integrity".

I liked it's original title "self-aggrandizement through puffery and sanctimony," better.

And of COURSE you know that Jonmc is going to champion the redneck, the white-socked and the blue label beer. That's, like, his job or something.

I won't waste time denying my affection for the uncouth, but my job as I see it, is pointing out the rather obvious fact that when it comes to prejudice, there's not a human being on this planet (of any race, creed, or color) who can claim innocence, so getting on a high horse accomplishes nothing, and I think people know that, and that makes me suspect that their motives are something other than what they profess.
posted by jonmc at 8:06 AM on October 20, 2005


Ohhhhh! I'd always wondered what positive self esteem looked like to those with negative self esteem, now I know! Self aggrandizement, puffery and sanctimony!

Perhaps you'd be interested in my two park workshop - Tell the Truth to Love Yourself and What if Nobody Likes You?

I also happen to have (in stock!) my handy reference pamphlet - Prejudice - It's like Original Sin!
posted by ewkpates at 8:14 AM on October 20, 2005


Ohhhhh! I'd always wondered what positive self esteem looked like to those with negative self esteem, now I know!

Your self-esteem is not at issue. I don't doubt that you have plenty, perhaps too much. But it's probably a good thing that you love yourself, since the rest of us find you rather boring.
posted by jonmc at 8:18 AM on October 20, 2005


Why does this thread remind me of high school?

My friends and I were considered the "bad apples". We were the jerks standing outside smoking, we dressed like druggies and punks, we dated "bad mormons", made racist jokes at each other, were cruel, crude, and trouble makers. We knew every offensive joke and said them to each other all the time. We would steal beanie babies and shoot them out of potato guns. My friends were atheists but joined youth groups to pick up girls (and it worked). Drinking, drugs, loud music, shit cars, bad jobs and worse relationships with our parents...we had it all. We were the kind of kids that would always get the digusted looks from the people around us. We were the "those poor parents" type of kids. And from your reaction to anon, I'm guessing a lot of your here would feel the same thing if you saw me then.

But I did savor the looks of amazement on society's face when they found out that we were the best students at our school, were the ones who stood up for the weak and the outcasts, rejected no one for being different for ourselves and were only intolerant to those who refused to be open minded. We were, in reality, everything that they wanted their kids to be but we just didn't look the part. So what if my friends called me a wetback to my face? They didn't mean it and I knew where the words were coming from. And when someone who I didn't know called me a spic or a wetback, my friends were there to not only defend me but to attack the bigotory that they saw around them.

Looks are decieving and guilt by association shows more about the individual assuming the guilt than the person in question. Anon had not asked why her bf hangs with his friends, what they mean to him. That's your problem leaping. You're not thinking about the bf at all nor are you trying to understand why people have friends who aren't like them. You automatically assume that a person befriends those who are just like them. And that's a bullshit arguement to make. Just because you are incapable to make friends who are different from you does not mean someone else can't. I have many friends who are not like me and I'm glad for that. Different friends mean different perspecitives on the world. And I'm a strong enough individual to understand that just because my friend might not like 'da gays' that it doesn't mean I have to agree with them. I'm comfortable enough in my own beliefs to be around those who don't share them. I'm strong enough to be able to defend myself around those who question my thoughts and ideas. And I'm not going to back down from the challenge of understanding that not everyone agrees with me.

If you want to live in your own personal bubble, fine. But don't automatically assume everyone is like you or share you beliefs. That's what pissed me off most about your comments: your inability to think beyond yourself. Grow the fuck up.
posted by Stynxno at 8:19 AM on October 20, 2005


Agregoli please stop being reasonable. This is MetaTalk and there's no place for that here. Make with the drama and hysteria or leave.

Your tone is insulting! I'm gonna make a MetaTalk about THAT comment! Wah!
posted by agregoli at 8:27 AM on October 20, 2005


Stealing, joining youth groups to seduce young girls, drinking, drugs... wow. You are a champion of strong thoughts and ideas! Or, if not that, of a determined and focused philosophy of hedonism in a vacuum of accountability! I think you are just the kind of marriage material a girl might be looking for! How are you with young children?

BTW, just a side note: "growing up" - I don't think it means what you think it means.
posted by ewkpates at 8:29 AM on October 20, 2005


Agregoli - I eagerly await your thread. I think you know I mean it...
posted by ewkpates at 8:30 AM on October 20, 2005


Stealing, joining youth groups to seduce young girls, drinking, drugs... wow.

Remember my comment about anally PC people=fundamentalists minus religion?

Keep making my case for me, dude.
posted by jonmc at 8:33 AM on October 20, 2005


maybe you could just dye his head, where he can't lick.
posted by leapingsheep at 5:30 AM PST on October 20 [!]


He may be racist, but he deserves to maintain at least a shred of dignity.
posted by mullacc at 8:35 AM on October 20, 2005


Dear Mr. Vernon: We accept the fact that we had to sacrifice a whole Saturday in detention for whatever it is we did wrong, but we think you're crazy for making us write an essay telling you who we think we are. You see us as you want to see us: in the simplest terms, in the most convenient definitions. But what we found out is that each one of us is a brain, and an athlete, and a basket case, a princess, and a criminal. Does that answer your question? Sincerely yours, The Breakfast Club.
posted by Divine_Wino at 8:37 AM on October 20, 2005


here I am giving hard but true advice

Well it sounded like opinion, which may be your truth but isn't everyone's. Indeed, it was so far from just about everyone's that it's earned the heap of derision you got for this call out. Ironic that you sould bring into the gray an issue seeming to stem from your inability to see only black and white.
posted by biffa at 8:42 AM on October 20, 2005


Keep making my point for me on moral/ethical relativism and the accountability vacuum!

Ethical Compromise - only do it when it won't result in a jail term!

Integrity - It's only a word!
posted by ewkpates at 8:43 AM on October 20, 2005


There's an old Yiddish saying my girlfriend uses on me when I get obstinate. It translates as "Talk to you, talk to the wall." Seems appropriate.

I hope you and your self-image are happy together. And keep on pretending that your moarlly pure. I bet it's fun.
posted by jonmc at 8:45 AM on October 20, 2005


Stynxno, that was eloquent.
posted by peacay at 8:45 AM on October 20, 2005


"morally pure." sorry
posted by jonmc at 8:46 AM on October 20, 2005


Stynxo, yes, I probably wouldn't have associated with you in high school because that kind of behavior isn't very respectable. I'm capable of respecting and being friendly with people who are different from me, as long as their viewpoints and behaviors are reasonable. But there are some kinds of people whose company I would not seek out. People who lie to get girls, make drugs and alcohol a large part of their lives, and are happy about having a bad relationship with their parents are among them.

A lot of people seem to think I started this thread because I'm sitting here weeping or something. No, I simply wanted to respond to a couple of comments directed at me without further derailing the thread.
posted by leapingsheep at 8:46 AM on October 20, 2005


Stinky!
posted by dios at 8:47 AM on October 20, 2005


Oh come on, the cat? The reason for putting it where he couldn't lick is because people were concerned that ingesting the dye would be harmful to him. I really don't consider coloring a cat's hair an assault on his dignity.
posted by leapingsheep at 8:50 AM on October 20, 2005


I'm capable of respecting and being friendly with people who are different from me, as long as their viewpoints and behaviors are reasonable.

And of course you get to be the ultimate arbiter of reasonableness?

But there are some kinds of people whose company I would not seek out. People who lie to get girls, make drugs and alcohol a large part of their lives,

Let me guess, you spent a lot of high school in your room reading The Bell Jar and sniffing that nobody understood you? There's a word to describe your attitude.
posted by jonmc at 8:51 AM on October 20, 2005


leapingsheep: Sorry, mixed up threads. I thought you wanted to dye the head of the racist friend. Mea culpa.
posted by mullacc at 8:55 AM on October 20, 2005


jonmc, everyone decides what is reasonable behavior, and they aren't friends with people who they consider to be outside that range. For example, you don't seem to be interested in being friends with people who you consider to be overly judgemental.
posted by leapingsheep at 8:58 AM on October 20, 2005


AskMe, not JudgeMe
posted by scarabic at 9:01 AM on October 20, 2005


Shocking that.
posted by Divine_Wino at 9:02 AM on October 20, 2005


For example, you don't seem to be interested in being friends with people who you consider to be overly judgemental.

Actually, if they had a decent sense of humor, good taste in music, and enjoyed a drink, I'd probably still hang out with them. And I'd also do my best to try and make them less judgmental. See where I'm going with this?

I fully realize that not all bigots, homophobes, or judgmental people can be changed. But to just throw up your hands and give up (which is what the "shunning" attitude amounts to, IMHO)..you might as well pack up your shotgun and move to a cabin in Idaho.
posted by jonmc at 9:02 AM on October 20, 2005


Dumbest callout all week today. Hi my name's leapingsheep and when someone doesn't agree with my opinions on morality I come bitching to MeTa and get on my soapbox.

WTF man. OK, so you think people shouldn't associate with racists. That's a valid belief. But don't expect everyone to hold it, or assume that because someone hangs out with racists it makes him or her a racist.

Jon you're a total hater. Just realize it and perhaps leapingsheep will stop arguing with you.
posted by Happydaz at 9:10 AM on October 20, 2005


Jon you're a total hater.

Duhhh.
posted by jonmc at 9:14 AM on October 20, 2005


hmm...well, that's useful jon. And very respectable.
posted by leapingsheep at 9:14 AM on October 20, 2005


are you referring to my last long comment? or my "duhhh?"
posted by jonmc at 9:16 AM on October 20, 2005


*packs up shotgun, moves to cabin in Idaho*

*realizes Idaho is full of retired cops, moves to tent in Mongolia*
posted by selfnoise at 9:20 AM on October 20, 2005


hmm...well, that's useful jon. And very respectable.

Is there some kind of maximum obtuseness level that one can reach or is this how black holes are formed?
posted by Divine_Wino at 9:23 AM on October 20, 2005 [1 favorite]


"Friends are chosen." - leaping

This is so completely wrong that it is almost batshitinsane. Many friends, I'd say the vast majority, are just acquired by accident: it was an accident that you sat next to Bob on the school bus, or that Suzy hapened to be drinking the same unusual martini as you at the party, or that John is your dad's best friend's son and so you grew up together. After you've met and the emotional bonds are forged, good friends are no easier to abandon than family. It is incredibly difficult to tell Mark, who has always given you a shoulder to cry on, that you don't want to be friends because of some opinion that he has.

Is it within the realm of logic that you can stop being friends with anyone? Sure. But to pretend that anyone can just gain and drop friends quickly and esaily just shows a complete lack of insight into how strong emotional ties really are.
posted by oddman at 9:23 AM on October 20, 2005


Your long comment, jon. I was quite serious. If you're actively trying to change bigots, then bravo.
posted by leapingsheep at 9:24 AM on October 20, 2005


Man, what a great thread. A true relief after all the crap we've been going through recently.

Stynxo, yes, I probably wouldn't have associated with you in high school because that kind of behavior isn't very respectable.

That, for instance, gave me a belly laugh so satisfying I'll probably be smiling the rest of the day. I don't think it would ever have occurred to me that someone on MetaFilter would one day say, with the utmost seriousness, "that kind of behavior isn't very respectable." Thank you, leapingsheep! And thank you, mullacc, for "I thought you wanted to dye the head of the racist friend." (She probably does, actually...)

ewkpates: I hate to tell you this, but you really are coming off as a self-satisfied prig. Go sit in the Saints' Corner with leapingsheep. Me, I'll hang out in the corner bar with jonmc and our entire collection of worthless friends, and hopefully the Saints will stick their heads in, shriek in horror, and run away.
posted by languagehat at 9:25 AM on October 20, 2005


Then I recant my last comment, but stand by the breakfast club as a useful parable about the noble and ultimately futile efforts of the UN.
posted by Divine_Wino at 9:27 AM on October 20, 2005


Belly laughs for everyone, and with pleasure!
posted by leapingsheep at 9:29 AM on October 20, 2005


If you're actively trying to change bigots, then bravo.

Well, I'll still have to find something likeable about them to bother hanging around them, though.

And I'm not talking about KKK/Nazi/NOI type bigots, either. Those people are too far gone to change from outside influence. I'm talking more about casaul bigots, who may not hate their Other, but harbor untrue beliefs and attitudes about them. Those people can be reached, since on some level, we are all "those people."

And I try to do it in a non-confrontational way, since accusations don't change minds much, not in the personal arena anyway.
posted by jonmc at 9:29 AM on October 20, 2005


hopefully the Saints will stick their heads in, shriek in horror, and run away.

Yeah, the Saints suck. Go Giants!
posted by jonmc at 9:30 AM on October 20, 2005


Jonmc, Languagehat, Stynxo I just got my dads milk wagon, let's head down to the quarry, I heard there were some girls from the other side of the lake there, you know, the kind that smoke before marriage and refuse to ride sidesaddle?
posted by Divine_Wino at 9:34 AM on October 20, 2005


For what it's worth, when I read leapingsheep's comment in the first thread, I thought "What a stupid fucking twat". I nearly said as much, but I didn't think it would really help answer the poster's question. Not that commenting on it here really helps anyone either, but seeing as leapingsheep has gone to the trouble of highlighting a thread where acts like a dick, I may as well stick my oar in.
I guess all this makes me a racist. And a misogynist for using the word twat. I am just one gigantic suck ball.
posted by chill at 9:34 AM on October 20, 2005


I got a case of beer, and a pellet gun to shoot the cans with. I also have a dime novel in my pocket.
posted by jonmc at 9:35 AM on October 20, 2005


leapingsheep : "Yes, well, here I am giving hard but true advice"

Sorry, I must have misread this bit: can you provide a link to what you advised anon to do?

So instead of saying what you meant (presumably "You should break up with your boyfriend because he hangs around and thus implicitly supports racist folks"), you made a somewhat insulting comment that was meant to get anon to reconsider her situation. And then Andrew Cooke, instead of saying what he meant (presumably "Having friendships despite strong disagreement about important issues is not a bad thing"), made a somewhat insulting comment that was meant to get you to reconsider your opinions. And yet you're pretty upset that Andrew Cooke did to you what you did to anonymous.
posted by Bugbread at 9:35 AM on October 20, 2005


I don't think I've ever before read the word "prig" so many times in a single sitting.
posted by Stauf at 9:40 AM on October 20, 2005


Well, bugbread, as I've said, I thought the comment was understandable as people sometimes do when they look over what they've written, even if it is not. It seems that what I meant wasn't clear, but now that I've explained it it is.

And again, I'm not upset. I've gotten quite a few belly laughs from this myself, and consider the exchange interesting. I didn't come here to cry. I just wanted to anwer those few guys who were answering me, without taking the original thread too far off topic.
posted by leapingsheep at 9:43 AM on October 20, 2005


> What was alleged, exactly?
That I'm not human...


Oh, come on! Nuance, man. Look at it again:

"it's called being human. maybe someday you'll understand."

That's not a denial of your fundamental humanity, that's a ding on the degree to which your sense of humanity is developed. The fact that you seem to have no empathy for the sort of complex and compromise-rich relationships that almost everybody (else) has when strong emotions are involved suggests that andrew cooke was right on the money. You have led a truly charmed (or incredibly lonely) life if you've never felt trapped by the twin forces of personal ethics and emotional involvement.
posted by cortex at 9:51 AM on October 20, 2005


joining youth groups to seduce young girls

Rescuing the young and impressionable from bizarre mind control goups like the LDS church is a moral imperative. It is unethical not to try to get them out.

Plus repressed girls go like steamboats once you break the seal.
posted by PinkStainlessTail at 10:07 AM on October 20, 2005


Stealing, joining youth groups to seduce young girls, - ewkpates

I think this comment is very telling. Because Stinky didn't say he seduced anyone. He said he went to 'pick up' girls. Like, meet girls that might date him. And you're making a moral judgement that it's bad to join an organization in order to meet people and potential romantic possibilities? Wow. Just wow. Do you think that all 'young girls' are so helpless to resist Stinky's dark charm, or what? Weird.

Scarabic's comment bears repeating:

AskMe, not JudgeMe
posted by raedyn at 10:11 AM on October 20, 2005


"Friends are chosen."

This is true, but it's less meaningful for some people than for others. Many people have the capacity to befriend just about anyone. If a friend turns out to be bad, it's no big deal. They can dump that friend and find another. Some people even feel this way about their lover/spouse. I don't mean they don't love their significant other. They do. But they feel like "there are many fish in the sea." Somewhere, maybe in the back of their mind, they know that if their relationship ever goes south, they will move on and find someone else.

Some of us are not like that. I have very few friends. I didn't date much and got married when I was almost 30. What makes me click with a particular person is mysterious to me. Sometimes I meet someone with tons of shared interests and a similar personality to mine, but for some reason I don't feel friendship towards him. If one of my few friendships end, it's a HUGE catastrophe for me. (One ended about a year ago, and I am still actively grieving.) I've thought about what I would do if my marriage ended. Maybe one day I would find someone else, but that is so beyond my thinking, I can't imagine it. It took 30 years of my life to find the one girl I wanted to marry.

So what is someone like me supposed to do if a friend reveals racist tendencies? What should I do if my wife comes home one day and introduces me to a racist friend? Leave her? Why should I submit myself to such horrible pain? So that I'll have more self respect? Fuck self respect. I'd rather be loved and in love. Having been lonely for years, I'll say that (for me at least) there's nothing worse than loneliness.

When people like leapingsheep give this sort of advice, I always suspect they're in the "there are many fish in the sea" crowd. If this is true, leaping, then you should think twice about what you say. You may be talking to someone like me. I'm not saying you shouldn't give the advice. I'm not saying it's necessarily bad advice. But realize that you may be asking someone to do something deeply deeply painful.
posted by grumblebee at 10:12 AM on October 20, 2005


Do you think that all 'young girls' are so helpless to resist Stinky's dark charm, or what?

I've met stinky, and I had diffuculty resisting his dark charm. The kid's a menace, I tell ya.
posted by jonmc at 10:13 AM on October 20, 2005


Heh. I did an internship with a guy who was Mormon, and his Mormon girlfriend came to visit. We were living in dorms, and they had SCREAMING sex. He explained, when she was out of the room, that this was partly because they only had anal sex since they weren't married. But he drank, smoked and loved coffee, which put him at general odds with LDS. She wouldn't touch a thing, 'cept getting that backdoor knocked.
After she left, he complained that he thought she was gonna turn him gay and that he only did her in the butt because she insisted. He then tried desperately to fuck every other girl around.
He was a real shitstain of a person, but the other Mormon who came along was probably one of the most upstanding folks I've ever met. He also had a view that most of the church teachings were bunk, but he liked to live like one of those LDS commercials, so he stuck with the faith.
posted by klangklangston at 10:20 AM on October 20, 2005


I just always liked the "We're not married, so it's gotta be anal to get by God" theory.
posted by klangklangston at 10:22 AM on October 20, 2005


Grumblebee, I agree that it would probably be very painful for anon to break up with her boyfriend. But it is possible that it would cause her more pain overall to stay with him. I would never have suggested that she should end a marriage over this. If she were married I would have answered differently, because I do consider marriage almost permanent, to be dissolved only in the worst cases. It's because I value marriage highly that I made the suggestion in the first place. This situation would cause a lot of pain and tension for anon's whole life if she and her boyfriend were to marry.

What you wrote was very touching, and truly I'm not so cavalier about personal relationships as to throw them away for one racist remark or something. But in this case, the guy's friend isn't just struggling against racist tendencies that he recognizes are wrong. He's made racism his whole persona, never being far from a confederate flag. That is quite extreme. I think if your wife had regularly hung out with people like that before you married, and expected you to hang out with them for whole days at a time too, you would not have developed the feelings you did for her. That it took you so long to find someone you wanted to marry shows just how careful you were about picking a worthy person.
posted by leapingsheep at 10:32 AM on October 20, 2005


joining youth groups to seduce young girls...

girls who were also joining youth groups to meet guys like stynxno, or at least guys with cars.
posted by jessamyn at 10:34 AM on October 20, 2005


leapingsheep, I respect you opinion. I do think you need to allow for human complexity. I'm obviously very close with my wife, but I know plenty of bf/gf relationships that are closer than some marriages. Again, I don't think your advice is necessarily bad, but I think you could have phrased it better. The way you said it sounded like someone telling an alcoholic, "Just stop drinking." Sure, he needs to stop, but you need to show an understanding of how deeply alcoholism can embed itself into someone's life.

Someone like me is always going to have a knee-jerk reaction to "leave your partner" comments.

Note that anon suggested she might be in love with her bf!
posted by grumblebee at 10:44 AM on October 20, 2005


All this talk of stinky and sex makes me randy. And want a taco.
posted by dios at 10:48 AM on October 20, 2005


Fair enough, grumblebee. Thanks for the advice.
posted by leapingsheep at 10:50 AM on October 20, 2005


I've had a couple of other thoughts, leapingsheep. (I'm not attacking you like some other's here. I think you've brought something interesting to the table. So I'd like to discuss it more.)

You claim that one should distance oneself from racist people. Can you explain why? I can think of a few reasons:

1) it's painful to be around racist people.

2) people might think YOU are racist if you hang out with racist people.

3) hanging out with them endorses their behavior.

I think we can dispense with (1) and (2) pretty quickly. It would cause me and you pain to hang out with a racist, but someone else's reaction might be different. Or they might think the pain was worth enduring for some other benefits they get from the relationship. As for "what other people think," some people care about that; some people don't. I don't think there's a good argument that one SHOULD care.

So is your main concern (3). Do we actually have any reason to believe that hanging out with racist people makes them more racist? Is dumping them supposed to be punishment? Do racist people give up racism if all their friends abandon them or do they just find new, racist friends?

Also, in this thread, you state "A person's values and how they act on them are the most important thing about a person." Maybe so. I must say that personally, values have NOTHING to do with what attracts me to a person. I realize that they are important in some abstract sense, and I might be turned off by certain values. But I am attracted to sense-of-humor, intelligence, looks, and some other factors -- not values. Maybe YOU are attracted to values. In which case you're like a breast man telling someone to dump his girlfriend because she's a B cup. He might be more into legs.
posted by grumblebee at 10:56 AM on October 20, 2005


One friend "Joe" is particularly noxious. He is loud, bigoted, ugly, and crude. To give you some idea of what he is like, I haven't seen a photo of him without a rebel flag being used as a backdrop. He has a disdain for "faggots" and yeah you get the picture...

I think it's a stretch to say that this person has "made racism his whole persona." He sounds more like an immature idiot whose intellect and sense of tact hasn't progressed beyond what it was in high school. Surely there is latent racism in the rebel flag thing, but I don't think this guy has intellectualized and embraced his hatred. And, while I deplore any use of the word "faggot," you could probably lump this guy in with huge chunks of the 14-16 year old male population that call their buddies "fags." It's ignorant, yes, but not as insidious as James Dobson and his ilk. I could be way off in my interpretation, but my feeling is that we're not really dealing with a stone cold racist/bigot here.
posted by mullacc at 10:57 AM on October 20, 2005




Your favorite band bogeyman prejudice sux.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 11:16 AM on October 20, 2005


***** Comedy gold. Would read whining complaint by this poster again.
posted by Joeforking at 11:17 AM on October 20, 2005


grumblebee: I am attracted to sense-of-humor, intelligence, looks, and some other factors -- not values. Maybe YOU are attracted to values. In which case you're like a breast man telling someone to dump his girlfriend because she's a B cup. He might be more into legs.

This might be the best analogy I've heard all day.
posted by S.C. at 11:21 AM on October 20, 2005


Grumblebee,
As far as I see it, the problem isn't with the act of regularly being in the presence of racist people. My objection is related to number 2. It should be painful to be around a person who is flamboyantly racist. You might spend a lot of time with a racist who keeps his feelings to himself. You might never know he's racist at all. You might spend a lot of time with a friend who has racist tendencies, and wants to talk about them to try to sort them out and get over them. But to spend a lot of time with someone who is loud, demonstrative, and proud about his racism is a different matter. I think that it reveals a character flaw to not feel pain in the presence of blatant racism. Even in that case, someone who has the intention jonmc mentioned to try to change these people would be doing a good thing by spending time with them despite the pain. But to not feel the pain at all...major character flaw. Not a good prospective mate.

I must say that personally, values have NOTHING to do with what attracts me to a person. I realize that they are important in some abstract sense, and I might be turned off by certain values. But I am attracted to sense-of-humor, intelligence, looks, and some other factors -- not values.
I think a lot of the things that do attract you to people are derived from their values. You mentioned sense of humor, which is one. When, how, and why they joke are all related to their values. How they treat you and others is also related to their values. Intelligence may be innate, but how it is used is related to values. As for looks, that is important for a mate (that is all you mean, right?), but I doubt that you would let it override the other considerations. It would be unwise to do so if you expected the relationship to last past the reproductive years.




I think it's a stretch to say that this person has "made racism his whole persona." He sounds more like an immature idiot whose intellect and sense of tact hasn't progressed beyond what it was in high school. Surely there is latent racism in the rebel flag thing, but I don't think this guy has intellectualized and embraced his hatred. And, while I deplore any use of the word "faggot," you could probably lump this guy in with huge chunks of the 14-16 year old male population that call their buddies "fags." It's ignorant, yes, but not as insidious as James Dobson and his ilk. I could be way off in my interpretation, but my feeling is that we're not really dealing with a stone cold racist/bigot here.

If that's true, a lot of what I've said is incorrect. In that case, the approach of simply not mixing with Joe might be more workable.
posted by leapingsheep at 11:37 AM on October 20, 2005


He's made racism his whole persona, never being far from a confederate flag.
Wow. I was lowering my guard after a couple of good-humored comments you made a ways up there, but now I'm back to thinking you're both hypocritical and deeply prejudiced. Here, try this on for size:

He's made persecution his whole persona, never being far from a crucifix.


Or this:

He's made usury his whole persona, never being far from a star of David.

Or... Oh, never mind. You're right, anybody who doesn't have the same symbolic repertoire as you is a stone racist and should be avoided by all right-thinking people.
posted by languagehat at 11:39 AM on October 20, 2005


Even in that case, someone who has the intention jonmc mentioned to try to change these people would be doing a good thing by spending time with them despite the pain

Just to be clear, I don't go out looking for bigots to hang out with so I can set them straight. I'm not on a crusade. I hang out with someone if I like their company, but if bigotry pops up, I deal with it the way I've described, engagement, not conspicuous indignance, which accomplishes nothing and is ultimately self-serving.
posted by jonmc at 11:41 AM on October 20, 2005


languagehat...the confederate flag isn't exactly an obscure symbol. He must know what it represents. Even if he is one of the people who feels it represents old southern values or whatnot, he must know how hurtful it is to many people to display it. Besides, anon made it clear that he is a bigot and used the flag itself only as an example.
posted by leapingsheep at 11:41 AM on October 20, 2005


"White trash"? I guess that's better than having a couple niggers as friends. So you lucked out there.
posted by Witty at 10:54 AM PST on October 20


It's annoying that this comment was deleted as it was no more off topic than at least half the comments there and much more succinct in pointing out anons glass house. I know it's a tough line to walk but that was a bad choice. Despite the fact that (or especially because) it was posted by witty.
posted by Divine_Wino at 11:42 AM on October 20, 2005


languagehat...the confederate flag isn't exactly an obscure symbol. He must know what it represents.

It's an argument that's been had before, but it means a lot of different things to a lot of people. Racism to some, Southern Pride to others, vague amorphous "Rebel"-dom to still others. Just sayin'.
posted by jonmc at 11:43 AM on October 20, 2005


No, Jonmc, Bo and Duke Luke were well-known racists. I mean, they even named the car the General Lee!
posted by klangklangston at 12:05 PM on October 20, 2005


jonmc writes "It's an argument that's been had before, but it means a lot of different things to a lot of people. Racism to some, Southern Pride to others, vague amorphous 'Rebel'-dom to still others. Just sayin"."

How about that, we just talked about the flag
posted by Mitheral at 12:06 PM on October 20, 2005


I didn't ay that's how I saw it, mitheral. and I'm glad I missed that threadful of tired stereotypes.
posted by jonmc at 12:08 PM on October 20, 2005


But jon, no matter what it means to him, he knows what it means to others. I'm not about to display swastikas and claim that they represent my respect for native americans.
posted by leapingsheep at 12:09 PM on October 20, 2005


Why do you hate Native Americans?
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 12:10 PM on October 20, 2005


Mmmmm, these roasted marshmallows taste great:

posted by caddis at 12:11 PM on October 20, 2005


But jon, no matter what it means to him, he knows what it means to others.

So only one side has to acknowledge that the flag has more than one meaning? If someone who waves the Stars and Bars should know that it represents racism to some, then other people should know that it represents all kinds of other things to other people.
posted by 23skidoo at 12:15 PM on October 20, 2005


am southern and related to rednecks. The stars and bars is really more about redneckism than racism-although I am not denying that exists.

The odd thing about rednecks is they may say racist things amongst themselves yet have very cordial relationships with the black people they know. Weird but true.

leapingsheep, the truth is that none of us has met the fellow with the flag fetish. We don't KNOW if he is simply an immature tobacco chewing redneck or a cardcarrying member of the KKK. We don't know WHY he and the boyfriend are friends-and I think it is unfair to judge the character of the boyfriend simply from the limited info we have. All we CAN do is answer anon's question, which was more along the lines of "can't stand boyfriend's friend."

Leapingsheep, your comment in the thread was fairly innocuous as far as it went. But bringing it here was, pardon me, pretty asinine. If you really were bothered by what was said back to you, your skin is way too thin for Mefi, and you shouldn't come back till you bring a doctor's note.
posted by konolia at 1:14 PM on October 20, 2005


sigh. I guess this is getting long and I won't expect people have read the whole thing, but it's the last time I'm going to say that I didn't come here because my fragile heart was wounded.

And yes, in this case we do know that the person in question is a bigot, at least if anon is to be believed, which is the assumption on which all that followed was based.
posted by leapingsheep at 1:34 PM on October 20, 2005


Why did you come here, then? Purportedly to defend yourself against allegations serious enough to merit a Metatalk thread, allegations (such as they were) against your sense of humanity and your priggishness. Who were you defending, who was wounded, if not you?
posted by cortex at 1:46 PM on October 20, 2005


Anyone who is friends with a racist is a racist. Guilt by association? In the court of ethics, unlike the court of law, absolutely.

A good friend of mine has been getting all racist lately. It's really annoying, but I can't ditch him as a friend because he's the only Jew I know, and if I'm not friends with him, well, how will I be able to prove I'm not an anti-semite!?

So confusing.
posted by delmoi at 1:47 PM on October 20, 2005


"White trash"? I guess that's better than having a couple niggers as friends. So you lucked out there.
posted by Witty at 10:54 AM PST on October 20
It's annoying that this comment was deleted as it was no more off topic than at least half the comments there and much more succinct in pointing out anons glass house. I know it's a tough line to walk but that was a bad choice. Despite the fact that (or especially because) it was posted by witty.


"White trash" and "nigger" are not the same thing, since "white trash" only applies to a subset of white people. If you called a black gang member a 'gang-banger' it wouldn't be all that offensive, it would only be offensive if that particular person were not a gang-banger.

Also, witty is a douche bag.
posted by delmoi at 1:51 PM on October 20, 2005


Why did you come here, then?
To make a correction. It's different than being heartbroken.

Anyhow, it's been fun. I'll have to check out now. Have fun discussing among yourselves.
posted by leapingsheep at 2:02 PM on October 20, 2005


What was the correction? That you are indeed human? That you are not a prig? I don't see why you didn't simply state that in the thread and leave it at that.
posted by cortex at 2:04 PM on October 20, 2005


To make a correction, that you, are, in fact, human, and not a prig?
posted by agregoli at 2:05 PM on October 20, 2005


cortex beat me to it.
posted by agregoli at 2:05 PM on October 20, 2005


Hey! I demand more of the funny from ewkpates, or I will go drink some coffee and summon forth some onanistic rant to entertain myself. Yes that is a threat. The "it's not about me feeling righteous, it's about feeling that everyone else is unrighteous" was one of the best satirical comments I've read here all week.
posted by freebird at 2:11 PM on October 20, 2005


I'm not concern with "winning arguments" but with "which arguments win".

Whoa...
posted by brundlefly at 2:21 PM on October 20, 2005


Good to see Yoko's finally getting work.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 2:25 PM on October 20, 2005


Whatever, crash. Your needless cruelty and name-calling is unbecoming, and speaks to the essential unrighteousness of all those who call you friend.

I mean, seriously. That is clearly Edward James Olmos.
posted by cortex at 2:32 PM on October 20, 2005


nonsense. that's son_of_minya.
posted by quonsar at 2:38 PM on October 20, 2005


But that guy has two hands.
posted by PinkStainlessTail at 2:52 PM on October 20, 2005




The odd thing about rednecks is they may say racist things amongst themselves yet have very cordial relationships with the black people they know. Weird but true.

This is often true, but you have to know actual rednecks to realize it, and rednecks aren't... what was the phrase?... very respectable.

We don't KNOW if he is simply an immature tobacco chewing redneck or a cardcarrying member of the KKK.


Correction: You don't know, and I don't know, but leapingsheep KNOWS. leapingsheep knows all, and is happy to share her knowledge with the rest of us, who are, sadly, too disreputable to accept her knowledge.
posted by languagehat at 3:02 PM on October 20, 2005


White trash and racism is histry now, see:

posted by eatitlive at 3:07 PM on October 20, 2005


"White trash" and "nigger" are not the same thing, since "white trash" only applies to a subset of white people.

What about "black trash"?
posted by loquax at 3:12 PM on October 20, 2005


Is this still open? I don't see the problem:

1) Some people here [Group A] think you shouldn't associate with [X], and that those who do are also guilty of [X] by association

2) Other people here [Group B] disagree, and do choose to associate with [X], all other things being equal

3) This means that Group B is actually X [by association], according to Group A's definition, and Group A is therefore not permitted to associate with Group B

4) So Group A has to go away

5) mathowie profits

Mind you, I don't have a dog in this fight (I think you all have valid points if you remove the insults and absolutes from the arguments). I just know a rhetorical corner when I see someone painted in it.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 3:20 PM on October 20, 2005


This is a lame call-out

All call-outs are lame. Dreadful, prissy school prefect behaviour.
posted by Decani at 3:20 PM on October 20, 2005


"But I did savor the looks of amazement on society's face when they found out that we were the best students at our school, were the ones who stood up for the weak and the outcasts, rejected no one for being different for ourselves and were only intolerant to those who refused to be open minded."

Savored those looks, did you? Maybe those looks were directed at you because you were self-satisfied posturing fuckwits. "Looks of amazement on society's face." I can't believe you wrote that sentence.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 3:21 PM on October 20, 2005


You forgot Group C who think the whole debate is ridiculous.
posted by caddis at 3:23 PM on October 20, 2005


..and group D who are too drunk to care, Group E who are high on Ecstasy and think we should all just looove eachother, maan, and Group F, who thinks we should go fuck ourselves.
posted by jonmc at 3:24 PM on October 20, 2005


Those are different groups?
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 3:25 PM on October 20, 2005


EB, by the way, as I said above, I've met stynxno, he's nothing like that hatchet job you just did on him. Pull it in a notch, all right?
posted by jonmc at 3:26 PM on October 20, 2005


Ooh! Ooh! Group D! I was looking for you guys.
posted by librarina at 3:27 PM on October 20, 2005


When we evaluate others by their friends, it may appear that we have a window to their soul; in fact it is a cracked and dirty mirror, and the face which peers out at us, grinning and spitting obscenity, is our own. By the assumption that racism is a "transitive" relation, like addition or communicable disease, we reveal an underlying axiom that beliefs, values, and cultures come in "atomic" bundles - for if they did not, we must acknowledge that while a friend may have some qualities we find repugnant, they may have others that make their company enjoyable in spite of this. Yet this axiom is itelf the basis of racism, in that it ascribes broad categorical behavior to people based solely on their membership in unrelated categories.

Thus, it is clear that Leapingsheep and Ewkpates are racists.
posted by freebird at 3:35 PM on October 20, 2005


*stands in the Group C corner*
posted by dg at 3:40 PM on October 20, 2005


Everyone is welcome in the Group C corner. We're a Meta-ting pot.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 3:46 PM on October 20, 2005


/me sits on the Group W bench
posted by dios at 3:47 PM on October 20, 2005


so are you are a father-raper or a mother-stabber?

sorry, couldn't resist
posted by jonmc at 3:49 PM on October 20, 2005


"I mean I'm sittin here on the Group W bench 'cause you want to know if I'm moral enough join the army, burn women, kids, houses and villages after bein' a litterbug."
posted by freebird at 3:55 PM on October 20, 2005


Alice? Is that you?
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 3:56 PM on October 20, 2005


Go! Ask!
posted by cortex at 3:59 PM on October 20, 2005


Shoulda taken the blue pill.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 4:05 PM on October 20, 2005


I guess I missed the part in this thread where Stynxno killed EB's cats...
posted by hototogisu at 4:08 PM on October 20, 2005


Well, the Cats hung out with Dogs sometimes. So they had to be Dogs. And Dogs that pretend to be Cats are really creepy. So they had it coming.
posted by freebird at 4:13 PM on October 20, 2005


Somehow I doubt EB would endorse such heinous discrimination, creepy fake cats or not. There must be more to this...
posted by hototogisu at 4:17 PM on October 20, 2005


It was all very subtle. I think it happened right after jonmc put the lipstick on by holding it in his barely existent cleavage.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 4:17 PM on October 20, 2005


hmph. at my cleavage is real, sweetheart. Talk to the hand.
posted by jonmc at 4:19 PM on October 20, 2005


Didn't say it was fake, darling - just... unimpressive.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 4:34 PM on October 20, 2005


Not really sure what Judd Nelson ever saw in you.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 4:35 PM on October 20, 2005


The curtains match the drapes, baby. That's what I'm talkin' bout...
posted by jonmc at 4:36 PM on October 20, 2005


The curtains match the drapes, honey...
posted by jonmc at 4:38 PM on October 20, 2005


both of them.
posted by jonmc at 4:38 PM on October 20, 2005


So you're saying you paid good money for this stylistic coherency, eh?
posted by hototogisu at 4:42 PM on October 20, 2005


Yet the windows are still small, drafty, and need cleaning. And the cheap aluminum frames cause mildew. I think a remodel wouldn't be out of order.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 4:43 PM on October 20, 2005


But the floors, shiny and freshly waxed....
posted by jonmc at 4:45 PM on October 20, 2005


And the roof... the roof... the roof is on fire.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 4:48 PM on October 20, 2005


Water? Thou needst it not! This Oedipal shingling, this incestuous housetoppery: let it burn!
posted by cortex at 5:36 PM on October 20, 2005




Verily! Let those upon the dexter field let fly thy joyous cries! Those upon the sinister press, join in our obstreperousness! All in this dwelling make thy clarion voices heard!
posted by freebird at 6:21 PM on October 20, 2005


Lo, a voice calleth from heaven! "Hey! Ho!"
posted by cortex at 6:33 PM on October 20, 2005


"White trash" and "nigger" are not the same thing, since "white trash" only applies to a subset of white people. If you called a black gang member a 'gang-banger' it wouldn't be all that offensive, it would only be offensive if that particular person were not a gang-banger.

When was the last time you called any black person a gang banger? To their face? In a public forum? How'd that work out for you, pretty good?

Why is it that white people are the only people that get to be different then their trash? How many people do you think there are that have ever called someone a nigger in earnest, do you think they might overlap with people who call someone white trash in earnest?

White people don't need a champion, but you are fooling yourself if you don't think the notion of "white trash" isn't pure prejudice (refreshingly clear of the race card, with only the much more powerful, sneaky and pervasive class card in play) and in fact isn't implying something about all other races besides white people in general. Just like even when Black History month is the shortest month of the year, white people manage to sling mud even at everyone even when they are looking down their noses at their own "you people." I'll happily declare anyone who doesn't mind calling people white trash (other than in a joking way, cause I love a good racist joke and lord knows, we human beings got our share of trash) a stone cracker ass mister charley.



And if being a douchebag was criteria for deletion this place would be a desert.
posted by Divine_Wino at 6:40 PM on October 20, 2005


just tell them you're a light skinned black at some point. see how they react. proceed from there. although my favorite is still bellowing (with much basso profundo and perfect enunciation):
LOOK. I DON'T SPEAK ENGLISH. ME NO SPEAKIE THE ENGLISH. I HAVE NO IDEA WHAT YOU ARE ON ABOUT, OK? KAPEESH? NO COMPRENDE POR FAVOR-- I'M SORRY, I HAVE NO IDEA WHAT YOU ARE SAYING, I'M NOT TRYING TO BE RUDE OR ANYTHING--
metafilter: i have not read the comments nor do i want to
posted by philida at 6:42 PM on October 20, 2005


a lotta evens in there, so sorry. Suck it line editing haters.
posted by Divine_Wino at 6:43 PM on October 20, 2005


Oh Divine Wino, hush. There's nothing wrong with your comment.
posted by davy at 7:11 PM on October 20, 2005


Oh and the definition of "white trash" I heard as a kid: "no better than a nigger" (or "just like" one, if there's really any difference).You can guess the "elevated" position of the person making that judgment. So there's more than "class superiority" at work there, or why would one need to specify the color of the "trash"?
posted by davy at 7:21 PM on October 20, 2005


"Lo, a voice calleth from heaven! 'Hey! Ho!'"

That's Mister Prostitute to you, numbnuts.
posted by davy at 7:23 PM on October 20, 2005


"Numbnuts" is a great word.




That is all.
posted by languagehat at 7:27 PM on October 20, 2005


LINE EDITORS ARE SHIT
posted by cortex at 8:12 PM on October 20, 2005


Well, there goes the neighbourhood.

*goes back to polishing monocle*
posted by Krrrlson at 8:40 PM on October 20, 2005


When was the last time you called any black person a gang banger? To their face? In a public forum? How'd that work out for you, pretty good?

About the last time I call someone "white trash" to their face. Never. I prefer to denigrate people outside or arms reach, because I am a hapless coward.

Why is it that white people are the only people that get to be different then their trash?

I suppose because white people have a much greater influence over language, and they need a way to differentiate certain subsets of their 'race'. Don't for a minute pretend "white trash" is a term that isn't used by white people as much as members of any race. I mean, what's the diffrence between "white trash" and "trailer trash"? Who came up with those word?

Some black people use the N-Word, but when they do they primarily use it to mean 'black person, like me' (from what I understand). When a white person says "white trash" they mean a poor white person.

How many people do you think there are that have ever called someone a nigger in earnest, do you think they might overlap with people who call someone white trash in earnest?

I suppose they might. I suppose the people who volentere for the red cross might also over lap with the set of people who are violent pedophiles. What does that tell us? Nothing at all.
posted by delmoi at 9:03 PM on October 20, 2005


philida: Just how drunk are you, exactly?
posted by delmoi at 9:04 PM on October 20, 2005


I ♥ my ♣
posted by delmoi at 9:04 PM on October 20, 2005


Uppity white trash are ruining the goddamn country.
posted by Jimbob at 9:12 PM on October 20, 2005


Jimbob speaks the truth. It doesn't even matter which country you live in.

what's the diffrence between "white trash" and "trailer trash"?
White trash don't necessarily live in trailers, trailer trash aren't necessarily white. They are both small intersections between larger social groupings.
posted by dg at 9:38 PM on October 20, 2005


Strictly speaking, dg is correct. However, that's like "clarifying" that "a nigger is a person of black African descent", a "definition" that need not be made in the first place -- if we quit calling people "white trash", "trailer trash", "nigger", etc.
posted by davy at 9:59 PM on October 20, 2005


Stynxno: Nice post. I'd like to buy you a taco.

leapingsheep: I'd like to buy you a taco as well, but I doubt you'd enjoy it. Some of my friends are racists. Perhaps if it was extra spicy, the heat would cover the foul aftertaste.
posted by I Love Tacos at 10:17 PM on October 20, 2005


davy : "Strictly speaking, dg is correct. However, that's like 'clarifying' that 'a nigger is a person of black African descent', a 'definition' that need not be made in the first place -- if we quit calling people 'white trash', 'trailer trash', 'nigger', etc."

It's also like 'clarifying' that 'a beer is an alcoholic beverage produced through the fermentation of sugar suspended in an aqueous medium, and which is not distilled after fermentation', a 'definition' that would not need to be made in the first place -- if we stopped using words like 'white trash', 'trailer trash', 'beer', etc.

Which is to say, your example, while logically true, is only an argument for your case if you already are in agreement, in which case the argument is unnecessary. If someone disagrees with your initial assumption that words like 'white trash' and 'nigger' are fundamentally similar, then your argument kinda ceases to be an argument, precisely when you'd want to be making an argument.

Like a religious person trying to convince an atheist of the existence of God by saying "It says in the Bible that God exists".
posted by Bugbread at 10:24 PM on October 20, 2005


Leapingsheep: Don't let any of this bother you. You hold your associates to a higher standard than others in this thread. Their objections should upset or surprise you.

If they want to tolerate racists in their social circle, that's fine. You don't. And I don't either. It's not being sanctimonious. It's controlling what you can.

And if I had to guess, I'd say that at least some of the backlash you're getting here stems from indivduals dealing with the guilt of tolerating something from their friends that they shouldn't have.

Don't feel bad because you drew a line and they didn't.
posted by 27 at 10:41 PM on October 20, 2005


"Numbnuts" is a great word.

My mom's favorite term of loving disapprobation. No lie.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 10:55 PM on October 20, 2005


"Anyone who is friends with a racist is a racist."

I absolutely disagree. If you tell someone "fuck you, you're racist" and never speak to them again, not only are you missing the opportunity of changing a mind, you're probably reinforcing their bigotry. Intolerance breeds intolerance.
posted by nthdegx at 11:26 PM on October 20, 2005


Don't feel bad because you drew a line and they didn't.

Thank you for getting at the real core of this issue.

The linear model implicit in your comment is a central feature of this discussion. If you will permit an oversimplification: this "drawing a line" requires that a single "dependant" factor be the deterministic function of a single "independent" variable. Think, for a moment, of the centuries of indoctrination and political conditioning that go into your blind acceptance of the application of the appellation "independent" here. Are not the two variables equally "dependant"? You tell me X and I'll tell you why, yet: give me a Y and - Ex Post Facto, the "independant" variable is fixed, pinned to a value like a gassed butterfly skewered to a Dead White Lepidopterist's board.

Thus you are able to label this unknown boyfriend - by knowing something of his friends you can literally interpolate this boolean quantity of his soul.

A Least Squares Fit in some space of moral and ethical coordinates is enough to tell you that you are better than the boyfriend of someone you've never met.

Yet, for most but the simplest problems, a Least Squares Fit, a paltry linear model, is insufficent - you yourself, in condemning an entire "social circle", implicitly acknowledge the curvature of any Human space. And along any curved surface, any point may rise "above" it's neighbors on an axis unknown to them, yet remaining adjacent - maintaining Contact with them all. And each of them to it, an infinitely rich topology. And yet you can know that a "sweet, gentle" man is not worth the time of the woman he loves because some of his childhood friends are not to her liking?

Phi on thee - got learn your basic math, *then* come back to this anonymous meta weblog and tell us who is worth what.
posted by freebird at 11:30 PM on October 20, 2005


Anyone watch episode five of My Name Is Earl?

I had a rather strong sense of deja vu while watching it tonight.
posted by five fresh fish at 12:02 AM on October 21, 2005


Thanks for that, freebird. Everything's clear now.
posted by 27 at 12:03 AM on October 21, 2005


Also, I'd like to have some of what freebird is having.

Not only do I not hang out with vocal racists, I don't hang out with stupid people, people who do not accept control of their lives, nor vocal homophobes, vocal pedophiles, indoor smokers, irrational anti-drug/anti-sex wingnuts, vocal religionists, nor the boys from Dukes of Hazzard.

I guess that pretty much makes me the anti-Christ in some people's eyes.
posted by five fresh fish at 12:10 AM on October 21, 2005


AskMe becomes less helpful when people feel like they can't use it to ask complicated or touchy questions without getting disparaged for their ideas.

You know what, jessamyn, I must respectfully disagree with you on this one. If we can't disparage clearly stupid ideas (intelligent design, having racists friends, for example) we are living in a world gone mad.

Some things are just wrong.
posted by haqspan at 12:22 AM on October 21, 2005


Don't let any of this bother you. You hold your associates to a higher standard than others in this thread. Their objections should upset or surprise you. If they want to tolerate racists in their social circle, that's fine. You don't. And I don't either. It's not being sanctimonious. It's controlling what you can. And if I had to guess, I'd say that at least some of the backlash you're getting here stems from indivduals dealing with the guilt of tolerating something from their friends that they shouldn't have. Don't feel bad because you drew a line and they didn't.

It's not sanctimonious to have your own personal standards about what is considered racist, and what is considered acceptable from friends. What's sanctimonious is refusing to acknowledge that logical arguments are being made by your opposition, and implying that other people should have the same beliefs as you, and if they don't have the same beliefs, then they should be ashamed. That's ridiculous. You end up sounding like a junior high girl who, when asked why no one likes her, responds with "They're just jealous that I'm so pretty." The kicker is there's lots of prettier girls who people have no problem with. It's not that she's pretty, it's that she's bitchy about it.

Misattributing people's objections to their nonexistant guilt is completely misguided.
posted by 23skidoo at 12:27 AM on October 21, 2005


Thanks for that, freebird. Everything's clear now.

No problem! I was worried the "got" typo at the end there might have confused things, but it sounds like you got it anyhow. Glad I could clear up that "higher standard [...] drawing a line" stuff for you!
posted by freebird at 12:36 AM on October 21, 2005


five fresh fish : "Not only do I not hang out with vocal racists, I don't hang out with stupid people, people who do not accept control of their lives, nor vocal homophobes, vocal pedophiles, indoor smokers, irrational anti-drug/anti-sex wingnuts, vocal religionists, nor the boys from Dukes of Hazzard.

I guess that pretty much makes me the anti-Christ in some people's eyes."


Well, some, I'm sure, but I suspect not many. Now, if you were telling other people that they shouldn't hang out with those folks either, then a lot more folks would find you antiChristy. It's an important difference.
posted by Bugbread at 1:15 AM on October 21, 2005


I've said it before, and I will again: I love me some freebird.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 1:51 AM on October 21, 2005


I don't want to talk about anonymous specifically because she isn't going to jump in to give any more details, but I feel that as a matter of self respect a woman should not be with a man like that.

leapingsheep, don't you think that's a little patronising towards the anonymous poster? She specifically said "I like (love...?) my boyfriend. He is cute, funny, sexy, sweet, and kind." That's how she describes the "man like that". What makes you think you know better than her what her boyfriend is like? How is liking someone she finds cute, funny, sexy, sweet, and kind a lack of self-respect?

Note, she also said: "Unfortunately, I don't like some of his friends very much. While a some of them are very nice, there are a couple of them who I absolutely cannot stand."

So, to me the reason your comment sounded unhelpful and over the top is not so much about your own ideas of how people should deal with people with obnoxious ideas, but that you ignored what she said about her boyfriend and the part about him having nice friends too.

Others on the other hand ignored that her stated reasons for disliking some of her boyfriend's friend (not all of them) weren't limited to ideas but (apparently) extended to personality: "noxious, loud, bigoted, ugly, and crude".

Now of course it can happen that someone has noxious ideas but is still nice and friendly (a possibility you seem to be discarding altogether). But the way she put it it really seems what she doesn't like about those couple of noxious friends is the conflation of noxious ideas and personality (again, a possibility largely ignored by some other commenters). She can't stand them, period. It's her right. It's also her right to like her boyfriend.

She was asking for advice on how to deal with them, not with him. It doesn't matter if you are conflating the two and what reasons you have to do so, she is not.

Her self-esteem is not even in the picture here, and it's certainly a stretch for you to imply she's an insecure confused girl whose judgement is clouded by being in love and therefore must not have noticed in her boyfriend some "bigotry by osmosis" process that you seem to take for granted, even if she hasn't said anything to that effect. Her concern is not that her boyfriend may stop being kind and lovable if he keeps being around people he's known since childhood (so it's hardly going to have an effect on his personality or his ideas now). Her concern is how to deal with those obnoxious friends while not letting her dislike of them affect her relationship with her boyfriend. She hasn't implied she wants her bf to stop hanging around with them altogether, she only implied she would rather avoid them than be forced to spend time with them herself.

So telling her to break up with him, no less (or conversely "suck up and deal with it"), is not helpful advice because it doesn't address the question as it was put, not as you (or others) would like it to be put.

Now I wouldn't know what advice to give there myself, because it all depends on so many other details she left out. For instance, if Confederate Flag dude had been specifically obnoxious towards her; what does she think her boyfriend sees in him that he values him as a friend; is it some deep bond or more of a fun buddy type of thing; has she ever brought up the topic with her bf; has he noticed she can't stand those couple of guys and how does he take it; has her bf made any remarks on their ideas as opposed to their personality and what he finds likeable about them; etc.

And in the end, of course, I think it's next to impossible to give any valid advice anyway without knowing the people in question. But if I was to give it a try, I certainly would start from what she said, not some imagined situation in which you apply your own assumptions and standards of social association and choice of partner or friends, in the abstract, regardless of what the poster said.

I mean, what if it had been a friend of hers asking "I love my friend anon a lot but she has a boyfriend who has some noxious bigoted friends and sometimes I have to hang out with them too, what should I do?", would you advise this friend of anon to stop seeing her, too? and the friend of the friend of anon? at what level do you accept people's own feelings can count more than the possibility of running into noxious people?
posted by funambulist at 4:15 AM on October 21, 2005


Holy cow, sorry for the length and boringness... the essential point had already been made anyway:

And yet you can know that a "sweet, gentle" man is not worth the time of the woman he loves because some of his childhood friends are not to her liking?
posted by funambulist at 4:17 AM on October 21, 2005


holy christ, this thread is awesome.

at first I was all like, "a lame call out? what-what!" but then ewkpates came in all worried, then dashed back out to a phonebooth, and then in rushed SuperSnob! We were all worried until SuperSnob showed up! And s/he was all like Pow! and Zap! to those nasty bad guys who thought that tolerance shouldn't wear an intolerant face. One of them, jonmc, kept getting up after SuperSnob would hit him, but SuperSnob never tires (except of lesser people)! So SuperSnob was all like "Whapow!" and "Ka-Zam!" and eventually Jonmc fell smited to the floor.

But then ZOMBIE JONMC got up! At this point, I've gotta admit, I thought SuperSnob was done for. But s/he was all like "Shaw! Right!" and then was all like "Pabow! Pablam!" whooping Zombie Jonmc's ass left and right! Except it turned out that Zombie Jonmc was immune to Self-Righteous Indignation. Loyal readers will be familiar with the fact that Self-Righeous Indignation is the fuel from which SuperSnob gains his/her powers. What was our hero/ine to do?! Well, s/he died. ZombieJonmc, slurring "Duhhhhhhhhhh!" as he struck SuperSnob, was at last victorious.

So SuperSnob's holy holy spirit flew up to heaven, and there met St. Peter, who stood guard at the holy gates.

"Hey, Pete," said SuperSnob. "I'm like, the holiest cat alive, or dead now, so lemme in."

"Haha! No." said St. Peter.

"What?! Why?!" cried SuperSnob.

"Because you're an asshole," said St. Peter. And with that, he booted SuperSnob back to earth.

Now SuperSnob was back in the fray. Except now s/he was a ZOMBIE SUPERSNOB! DUN DUN DUUUUUUUUUNNN!

Zombie SuperSnob was immune to his/her own Self-Righeous Indignation! What was s/he to do?! Without his/her powers of Holy Snobbery, s/he was toast! But SuperSnob resolved to fight on!

"You! Zombie Jonmc!" SuperSnob called to her foe. "This fight is still on, muchacho!"

"Whatever," ZombieJonmc said. "I'm getting a drink. You're just a zombie like the rest of us. Tell your story walkin'."

And SuperSnob did. Hopefully never to be heard from again.
posted by shmegegge at 4:37 AM on October 21, 2005


Well, I'm glad that went so well. I'd like to respond to all of you, but I'm afraid I have a busy morning then I won't be around for a couple of weeks. Never fear, though. I'll be back barring any tragedy, in which case I home shmegegge is wrong in his analysis.
posted by leapingsheep at 4:55 AM on October 21, 2005


"Not only do I not hang out with vocal racists, I don't hang out with stupid people, people who do not accept control of their lives, nor vocal homophobes, vocal pedophiles, indoor smokers, irrational anti-drug/anti-sex wingnuts, vocal religionists, nor the boys from Dukes of Hazzard."

Yeah, but you're in Canada.

(And can I say that, through an accidental loading of a fonts package which fucked up my default browser font for some reason, after switching to Garamond and enforcing that on my browser you guys seem so much more erudite and intelligent, even when you're putting forth goofy shit? I mean, Garamond is, like, the wonder font! I highly recommend that you all switch. It'll make you much less likely to respond with flames to anything you see. Garamond. It's fantastic.)
posted by klangklangston at 6:05 AM on October 21, 2005


klangklangston: actually that's pretty much the reason I switched over to Comic Sans for Mefi.
posted by cortex at 6:24 AM on October 21, 2005


So, at what level does bigotry stop contaminating people? We've already established that if your friends are rascist then you are, and it's been implied that if your friend's friends are rascist then you are. What about if I have a friend who has a friend who knows someone who watches the Dukes of Hazard? Am I safe, or do I need to run off and do penance in the desert while wearing a hair shirt?
posted by unreason at 6:33 AM on October 21, 2005


What's wrong with the Dukes of Hazzard now? apart from the movie?
posted by funambulist at 6:47 AM on October 21, 2005


Woof!
Delmoi

I suppose because white people have a much greater influence over language, and they need a way to differentiate certain subsets of their 'race'. Don't for a minute pretend "white trash" is a term that isn't used by white people as much as members of any race. I mean, what's the diffrence between "white trash" and "trailer trash"? Who came up with those word?

You are making my point for me, perhaps there is confusion, I assume the word "white trash" to be used almost exclusively by white people .

How many people do you think there are that have ever called someone a nigger in earnest, do you think they might overlap with people who call someone white trash in earnest?

I suppose they might. I suppose the people who volentere for the red cross might also over lap with the set of people who are violent pedophiles. What does that tell us? Nothing at all.


Logical bumpkinism, (this is why geometry class logic puzzles don't always work in the real world). See pedophiles and the red cross have nothing to do with each other, racists and whateverthefuck you call people who like to bandy around the phrase white trash are in the same category.

My point remains, calling someone white trash in a ask me question about what to do with your boyfriend's racist friends is ridiculous, I'm not going to solve the worlds problems here, so enough is enough.
posted by Divine_Wino at 7:00 AM on October 21, 2005


I want to know more about five fresh fish's 'don't ask, don't tell' policy for paedophiles.
posted by biffa at 7:24 AM on October 21, 2005


Holy shit, shmegegge, that was fuckin' amazing!
posted by LarryC at 7:42 AM on October 21, 2005


My policy for paedophiles is simply this: no matter how strong our friendship, if I find out that you're buggering children, I'll sic the cops on ya. We won't be friends any longer, that's for sure.

I want to know your policy on paedophiles, biffa.
posted by five fresh fish at 10:50 AM on October 21, 2005


I want to know how this went from having a boyfriend who has friends among whom there's a noxious but harmless idiot to having friends who you find out are paedophiles?

Or was someone actually defending being happy mates with child buggerers?
posted by funambulist at 11:13 AM on October 21, 2005


Michael Jackson, what have you done?
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 11:18 AM on October 21, 2005


It's a slippery slope!
posted by Mr T at 11:21 AM on October 21, 2005


I am only here for the freebird. I do not fear he will go hungry.
posted by yerfatma at 11:49 AM on October 21, 2005


I slippered your slope, btw.
posted by cortex at 12:01 PM on October 21, 2005


My slope kicked off your slippers, it made prancing difficult.
posted by Mr T at 12:07 PM on October 21, 2005


Per prancing, your slope is sloppy.
posted by cortex at 12:12 PM on October 21, 2005


I know, it's a wild slope and has been difficult to train.
posted by Mr T at 12:18 PM on October 21, 2005


Perhaps instead you should've trained a deaf cult to lope the wilds.
posted by cortex at 12:20 PM on October 21, 2005


The trouble with cults is they take up so much of your time. Once you get into the whole cult scene you end spending all your time cult message boards and spending money of cult paraphernalia. Before you know the cult is your whole life.
posted by Mr T at 12:28 PM on October 21, 2005


Believe me, I know. I was once conned into culting by a slimy southern Slopist. And that was a tough spot to climb out of. When the memories get me down, I console myself with the poetry of the greatest Anti-Slopist writer of the 19th century. A favorite:

"I look both aft and fore for miles
And woe! see naught but slopeofiles."
-- Sammy "Slippers" Clemens
posted by cortex at 12:31 PM on October 21, 2005


Hey, is that some kind of crack! I am NOT a slopophile. Just because you have one doesn't mean you bugger it. Sicko!

I'm off!
posted by Mr T at 12:36 PM on October 21, 2005


And so the slope has slupt.
posted by cortex at 12:40 PM on October 21, 2005


Methinks all this talk of Slope is entirely Tangential.

You face a choice - to move Up, "rising" beyond this clouded morass; or to move Away, "running" from the battle like a startled doe. I think the greatest Moral Philosophers, from Reimmann to Hirsch and Smale, are clear on this point:

When faced with Slopery you should always choose Rise over Run.
posted by freebird at 12:52 PM on October 21, 2005


freebird's logic is circular. Therefore, his slope requires a pi in the face.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 12:54 PM on October 21, 2005


Good sirs, I cannot help but detect an arc of prejudice and xenophobia in your words (and derivative they are, to their root), to which I must reply: integration now!
posted by cortex at 1:01 PM on October 21, 2005


Oho, you've struck a Chord in the Arc of my Covenant, restricted my Degrees of Freedom in bonds of logic - disproved the often disc-ussed maxim that "this Bird you Cannot Chain"!
posted by freebird at 1:02 PM on October 21, 2005


I think, sir, that you must be traveling on now.
posted by cortex at 1:10 PM on October 21, 2005


Please don’t take it badly, ’cause lord knows I’m to blame, but isn't that a pretty divisive statement you just made?
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 1:17 PM on October 21, 2005


Perhaps, but, as has been shown above, one must be careful with their associative tendencies -- better to shun the lowest common denominator and befriend the remainder.
posted by cortex at 1:22 PM on October 21, 2005


But isn't equality for all the whole point?
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 1:42 PM on October 21, 2005


Divisive? Now now, let's all stay rational.
posted by freebird at 1:43 PM on October 21, 2005


The cool logic you propose is, I'm afraid, imaginary.
posted by cortex at 1:52 PM on October 21, 2005


I'm happy to be judged by the company I keep.
posted by five fresh fish at 2:29 PM on October 21, 2005


hush, fff, we've moved on to whimsical riffing
posted by cortex at 2:37 PM on October 21, 2005


How much to make you guys shut up?
posted by Mid at 2:58 PM on October 21, 2005


USD 20. Cash in hand.
posted by cortex at 3:04 PM on October 21, 2005


All judgmental people are tossers.
posted by wackybrit at 3:59 PM on October 21, 2005


you are fooling yourself if you don't think the notion of "white trash" isn't pure prejudice

Oh, I don't know about 'pure', but one certainly has to wonder why it's necessary to refer to the colour of the trash. It doesn't seem to have any bearing on the matter. In my experience trashiness is an equal opportunity affliction.

All judgmental people are tossers.

Well, I'm a judgmental person and a tosser, but I firmly believe the two are unrelated.
posted by Decani at 6:21 PM on October 21, 2005


"I assume the word "white trash" to be used almost exclusively by white people ."

Well, actually, usually but not always. I've heard it used by black people who were "substantial members of the community" -- employed, educated, home-owning, etc. -- about people whose only claim to "accomplishment" or "status" came from being born white. It doesn't help that these "At least I'm white!" people are often the most vocal and vicious racists. For someone who never bothered to learn how to read because it interfered with huffing paint thinner all day to claim superiority to a PhD because of the color of their respective skins is a bit much in my book too. In that sense the color specification is appropriate, informative and defensive, and seems used with more discernment and justification than the majority of white people use the term.

But see unlike "the N-word", when a white person calls somebody "white trash" it's usually worse: not "white just like me" but "not as good as me even if we are the same color".

It's also that many more white people are likely to get called "white trash" than are in fact trashy. Not everybody who is poor and uneducated or from a "backward" background is worthless as a person, even if that person is "Caucasian".

(If this isn't clear enough, and I'm afraid it isn't, if we ask languagehat nicely he might "translate" for me.)
posted by davy at 7:52 PM on October 21, 2005


stavrosthewonderchicken wrote: I've said it before, and I will again: I love me some freebird.

That's because you bird types always stick together, acting and feeling "fowl-ier than thou."

Yup, that's me, self hating bird type
posted by birdsquared at 8:02 PM on October 21, 2005


It's also that many more white people are likely to get called "white trash" than are in fact trashy. Not everybody who is poor and uneducated or from a "backward" background is worthless as a person, even if that person is "Caucasian".

See, I'm actually disinclined to run with the implication that there is a distinct set of worthless poor, uneducated white folks out there. I may not be a fan, per se, but c'mon...
posted by cortex at 6:20 AM on October 22, 2005


DIOS! HI!
posted by Stynxno at 11:19 AM on October 22, 2005


if we ask languagehat nicely he might "translate" for me.

Sure!

"Bon, en effect, d'ordinaire mais pas toujours. J'ai entendu..."

Oh, wait, that's not what you meant, is it? Hell, it reads fine the way it is, and I've heard black folks say "white trash" too. But it may help if I put the salient point in bold:

Not everybody who is poor and uneducated or from a "backward" background is worthless as a person, even if that person is "Caucasian".
posted by languagehat at 1:46 PM on October 22, 2005


What does "worthless as a person mean"?
posted by loquax at 4:31 PM on October 22, 2005


loquax : "What does 'worthless as a person mean'?"

Presumably that the world would be no worse off without their interactions with it on a personal level, but that they might still be useful from other perspectives (economically, for example, through their contributions to GNP, tax payments, etc), or theoretical bases (they might be of some worth as "meat", in the sense that, were they to die, their organs could be used to save orphans or the like).

Not agreeing, just guessing.
posted by Bugbread at 5:53 AM on October 23, 2005


"What does 'worthless as a person mean'?"

Good for nothing, not even themselves. I prefer the old Yorkshire expression for such folk: a waste of skin.
posted by Decani at 8:39 AM on October 23, 2005


Good thing you said "the N-word". Had you actually said nigger, your comment would likely have been deleted. Nice one.
posted by Witty at 4:42 AM on October 24, 2005


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