- Posted by Johanna on May 19, 2007 at 7:47 am
- Category: LinkBlogging
Yeah, that’s a purposefully inflammatory headline, and what I’m describing is really just human nature. We have a hard time truly putting ourselves in the other guy’s shoes. It’s also the cheapest charge you can make online, since every person contradicts themselves at one point or another, either through learning additional information or changing one’s mind or just being a different person at a different time in one’s life.
I simply want to talk about how I found it amusing that I’m seeing posts complaining about statue supporters shutting down comments (link no longer available) at the same time so many livejournalers are talking about having to ban trolls or delete comments because they feel harassed. Why is it ok for them to do it but a major political statement when others who are equally tired of the high tempers do the same thing? Doesn’t this quote — “If they feel so strongly that they’re right, why not engage rather than silence?” — apply to both?
Does it make sense that plenty of people with a variety of opinions think that this isn’t going to get any better and just want people to move on? (Hypocrisy on my part, here, for not doing the same thing and for posting this.) I know, I know, it’s not the same thing, and it’s not. Anti-statuers may be getting threats of violence, when pro-statuers get called sexist or misogynist or stupid or compared to racists. They’re attacks on different kinds of levels, but they’re both attacks, and neither one is conducive to discussion or understanding.
Which leads me to the question: What’s really the desired outcome? That the company not produce the statue? Not likely, and the images are already out there, so that doesn’t seem to accomplish much. Consciousness raising? Some of that’s happened, which is great, but the points have, at this point, gotten lost in the drawing of battle lines and the stereotyping going on on both sides. Self-congratulatory martyrdom mixed with egotism? We’ve reached that point, too.
That comment’s not going to get me any friends, but it goes back to: was anything achieved? what are the actual results? If you think you’ve shown you can get people to listen to you. … Well, this is online. Are they listening or are they pointing and staring at the latest three-day meltdown? Are any benefits worth the costs?
Then there’s those complaining (my apologies on her behalf for the text-speak):
Do ppl rly have nothing better to do than pick a fight? :\ What’s worse is that they think they’re 100% right, and therefore, it’s not a debate, it’s not a discussion, it’s a fight. For a fight’s sake. It seems like many ppl are posting simply to get into a fight. It’s not their journal. If they just wanted to express an opinion, they could write in their journal. Instead, they show up on other ppl’s journals just to say “UR WRONG”. :\
That seems to me to equally describe the way the anti-statue forces have behaved as well. They show up at the vendor’s message boards and in other people’s comment threads to attack the product and its customers, and then they wonder why they weren’t listened to. They’re convinced they’re 100% right, so much so that some feel they’ve misrepresented the statue in the first place.
If you really want to live by the rules “only disagree in your own space”, then you ought to model the behavior first. Personally, I don’t agree with the rule… but it’s a very American attitude, when a group decides they’re on the side of the angels so whatever they do is ok in service to the cause, but others should live up to higher expectations.
She goes on to give advice I would hope both sides listen to:
dunno why everybody has to be RIGHT. I disagree with lots of ppl, I dun rly care that they dun share my POV. I dun call them names, or make assumptions about them or nething. >.>; The negativity hurts me.
… what’s the point of fighting online? Ppl get angry, NOBODY evar gets convinced and it ends up with both sides shouting at the wind.
Course, it’s been that way since I went online 20 years ago, so why should it change now? That’s why I love and hate it so. And I don’t blame people for having an easier time seeing what the “other side” shouldn’t do. That gets back to the whole splinter/log/eye thing. Righteous anger is fun, and a good head of steam will carry you a long way, perhaps beyond where you wanted to be.
I do appreciate their passion, and I agree with them that the statue is an unfortunate representation with messages the creators may not have intended.