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flamingsword: Geek pride with glasses (geek pride)
Now bear with me because you're going to need to watch that video or already have a grasp of the basics of game theory for this post to make sense.

In heterosexual spaces, men come at approaching women and flirting as though the act is a cooperative game. They see the dynamic as establishing a consortium of two people dedicated to sharing a good time and they try to be entertaining to the woman in the dyad in order to promote fairness, but due to cultural biases are not generally very good at distributing attention fairly between themselves and women. Men believe that they are competing with other men for access to women, and treat other men as potential threats to themselves but not to women.

Women come at being approached by men and the subsequent flirting as a competitive, zero sum game. They generally see men as seeking their attention and competing for attention within the conversation. Women believe that they are competing with other women for highly selected for men, but also as cooperating with other women to maintain safety and help out of awkward and unwanted situations. Women tend to be defensive players of this game since men represent a threat to them.

This represents a fundamental and hard to communicate power imbalance.
flamingsword: Aziraphale, the flaming sword, and Crowley (Default)
So, CisHet White Dude of my acquaintance, you do not want to keep going through the process of debating with me, even though we are making progress at getting our definitions and miscommunication worked out. That's fine, I guess. You do you.

But I have noticed a few things about this and previous arguments, and I need to say them, even if I cannot say them to you directly. Like: not every suggestion to change a behavior is a demand for compliance. You are not required to do anything; we are offering upgrades but we're not gonna be all Microsoft about it. You can keep using a behavior that most people use, even if it causes problems.

Like: not every criticism of a common behavior that creates a problem means that you are a monster unworthy of respect if you use that behavior. If someone on the internet notices that behavior A causes problem X and suggests upgrading to behavior B, I am not criticizing you by posting a link to that content. If you feel personally attacked every time someone posts something that could refer to a behavior that you do, you are going to feel attacked a lot for no good reason and probably will overreact to people who honestly respect you and are trying to make our world better. You know, that world we both have to live in?

And just because you're used to being in the unmarked category does not mean that there don't need to be words for things. Yeah, it's a made up word and it sounds stupid because you're not used to it. But I have heard you use slang before, so you don't actually have a problem with it until you think that it is somehow about criticizing you, personally. Things need names, especially if we are going to talk sensibly about where behaviors come from.

Six thousand years ago we lived in small tribal villages of a hundred to a hundred and fifty people where everyone knew everyone else. Now we have cities whose populations number in the millions. The same behaviors, the same culture is not going to work optimally for both situations. Stuff needs to change, and if you don't want to take on any of the hard work of progress, that's on you, but complaining about how other people go about producing a just and equitable society when you are doing none of the work is counterproductive.

Also: if you know that I post socially progressive content and you don't want to read it why are you following me on facebook?!
flamingsword: Aziraphale, the flaming sword, and Crowley (Default)

I used to be poor when I was a kid. Not that I'm not poor now, but there was this whole stint I did in the middle class during high school. Anyway. Once upon a time we lived on food stamps and my mom used to not eat so she could afford to buy us clothes. Some of our neighbors had that hard-bitten look like even getting enough to eat couldn't ease the strain of constant worry from thinning them down to the bone, from working their fingers to the bone, from being made of bones that rattled in fear and anger.

There was a lot of anger, when I was poor. Being wrong is a thing you can afford when there's always enough to eat. When you can't afford it, no one can admit to being wrong because then it's your fault that someone doesn't get to eat, or have gas money to get to work, or ...

Being poor is eating a lot of shame. It's being constantly defensive against any sign of unworthiness, because you have so little respect afforded to you that any loss is a significant blow. Being poor is not being able to afford to take a risk with your own self-respect rather than dismissing someone else's. Being poor is doubling down on being wrong because you can't lose face, when your public face is so much of what you have that can't be stolen or traded or sold off in ever-leaner times.

Being poor is eating a lot of mac 'n cheese, and being eaten by worry. Having all of your free mental time taken up with deciding which of four important things gets the next dollar doesn't leave a lot of room for creative problem solving. Poverty is like that. Shame is like that. It limits the scope of what you can achieve by making every decision perilous. Even long after you are no longer living in poverty, you still live inside the shape of it like a bonsai tree that doesn't understand the field it's been planted in. You have no concept of the world outside of the hand-to-mouth existence that has consumed you.

Poverty teaches you that something is wrong with you. It holds you up to a yardstick and if you're not tall enough, it chops your feet off so that you know that you deserve to never measure up. I knew people who worked sixty hours a week to afford to live in a trailer park. They weren't allowed to be angry at their bosses for underpaying them, so they were angry at their kids for needing things. Angry at their spouses for being disabled. Poverty is seething resentment that you can't measure up, and that nobody you know can measure up either, and looking down on all of you rather than breaking the yardstick you can't reach.

Poverty answers all the big questions in your life with "you can't afford the answer." So you keep being wrong. So you keep blaming yourself, and keep being easy to shame and underpay and control through fear and anger.

And it's fucking disgusting that there are people who believe that poverty is a thing that should exist.


flamingsword: Aziraphale, the flaming sword, and Crowley (Default)

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