Podcasts- Lesbian Talk episode57 (The Controversial Episode)

Me and Omega have ourselves a podcast! And we talk about… Lesbian stuff like social justice. We also begin a semi-regular feature where we discuss a Classic Doctor Who serial. This time- The Gunfighters.

Quicksilvers account.

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8 Comments

  1. I tend to be more on the Omega’s side. I worked at the campus LGBT center during college and went to several queer conferences, and at one in particular, the delegates were called together and spent a good hour discussing what the name of the conference should be. Not even the name as a whole, but what letters should be part of the “LGBT” acronym in the name. Not only did I find this rather a silly waste of time, but I was enraged when every proposed letter – I think there was Q for Queer, I for Intersex, and A for Ally – was voted to be included… EXCEPT for the A for Ally, which was very firmly downvoted out of consideration. I was very vocal about my disapproval of this and ended up walking out of the conference because I found the perception that allies were not important enough to be considered part of the effort for LGBT-etc. rights gravely insulting.

    I’m not sure anymore whether that was recounted to agree with the idea that social justice nitpicking is a little bit silly or that the anti-ally bent some people get is more than a little bit unsettling. A little bit of both, I guess. I suppose my feeling is, if you’re intentionally dismissive of the group you’re allegedly on the side of, then you’re not really an ally, no matter what you claim. Whereas if you’re genuinely uninformed about what is insulting toward the group you’re allied with and make an honest mistake, it would be nice if people would try to educate you rather than jump down your throat about it.

  2. No-one’s totally sure where “Dude” comes from, but the original use (way back in the 19th century) was as a synonym for ‘dandy’, or a what’s now sometimes called a ‘metrosexual’; a man, usually from the city, who pays so much attention to his appearance he stops being ‘manly’.

    Hence “dude ranch”, a ‘ranch’ that’s really just a tourist trap for city-boys with a lot of money but not much sense.

    So yeah, technically wasn’t originally gender-neutral, but there’s an argument to be made that common use is more important that older use.

  3. oh, and “irrational people” works as a word for the extreme end of social movements, without offending people OR sounding kind of childish like “cattywompus” does.

    Also; I agree completely with Hagan and, annoying, have nothing to add, she kinda covered EVERYthing I would have,

  4. Another cringe-worthy example of fake American accents in Doctor Who is in the Patrick Troughton episode, “Tomb of the Cybermen.”
    I can still hear the voice of Capt. Hopper saying, “It’s not exactly peaches back on the ship!”

  5. I will not venture to voice an opinion on the big debate in the first half because I am not smart or morally sophisticated enough for my input to be considered.

    I will however simply relate my experience with so called Social Justice Warriors, which is that even beyond whatever issues it is that they argue for they tend to be extremely unpleasant people. An asshole is an asshole regardless of sexuality or gender identity or race or whatever and when you basically only have the assholes around it can easily push people away who might otherwise have been an ally.

  6. I had a negative reaction to Hagan’s argument about SJW, and social movement extremists in general, and it took me a while thinking about it to sort out a rational reason why. Come down to it, I think it has a lot to do with the directness of the internet. More than once, I’ve seen an internet celebrity use terms incorrectly, often about trans individuals, and be immediately attacked for it because comments or twitter are involved. The rallying cry goes out, and a swarm of people attack this person over misuse of terms. More often than not, the aggressiveness of the response seems to back the person into a corner, and any attempt to defend themselves from the immediate assumptions of transphobicness reinforces those assumptions. Reasonable voices are drown out in the storm.

    This plays out with other topics too, it’s simply the ones to do with trans people that I’ve noticed the most. I think it’s especially a minefield because colloquial usage of words often doesn’t line up with the exact proper usages of them. I don’t know if pre-internet social movements had any dynamics like this, but it seems to color opinion of anyone pushing for social justice as crazy assholes by association for a lot of people, and in that respect I fear they’re doing more harm than good.

    Just my (white male american middle class straight cis) two cents.

  7. Hah, here in Bulgaria we also have random topless women in the newspapers. Nobody seems to care about it whatsoever. Then again nobody cares if a child sees a naked person, because hey – maybe it’s not such a big deal?

  8. I fall somewhere in between Omega and Diamanda when it comes to social justice. The issue I tend to have with social justice warriors is that….well, there’s a time and a place for reasoned debate and a time and a place for righteous anger and a “fuck you all, I’m done with this shit, I am going to demand my rights and you don’t get to treat me this way and da da da” fury, but most of the extreme social justice people seem to favour the latter approach to the point of it being their default way of interacting with other people online, and a lot of them don’t take intent or severity into account when dealing with slurs or micro-aggressions or what have you. That is say, a lot of extreme social justice warriors have a kind of very strict “with us or against us” mentality where any step out of line, no matter how major or minor, makes them go apeshit – to, for example, have the same reaction to someone accidentally using gender essentialist language when speaking up for gay rights as someone who launches into a spiel about how gay people are evil and responsible for the downfall of western civilization and yadda yadda yadda. Yes, you’re entitled to get angry when someone strikes a nerve, and you’re not required to explain yourself to others, but an accidental slip-up does not make that person fair game for all sorts of verbal abuse and unbridled rage, as I’ve seen happen before.

    Also, there’s a bit of a tendency on tumblr to apply euro/america-centric thinking to all other countries, cultures and time periods, and hold them to those standards: for example, arguing that it is impossible to be racist against white people anywhere, in any circumstances. In a majority-white country where society is structured in favour of white people, that’s true. But this attitude is also applied to places like, say, Japan, where white people are decidedly not the majority and can, in fact, be racially discriminated against. And then there are the people who try to define Irish people and Slavs as people of colour, because they’ve historically been crapped on, so Irish people/Slavs cannot be white – and no, I’m not joking.

    On the other hand, calling self-professed allies to a cause out for crappy, half-assed or hypocritical activism is totally necessary and needed, a lot of people face terrible discrimination, so it’s not like they’re getting angry over nothing here, and while I’m generally a “don’t yell at people” kind of person….sometimes yelling gets your point across very effectively, and makes people take notice.

    Appropriately enough given Diamanda’s point about moderation, I fall somewhere in the middle.


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