EDIT – I’ve just been told these are not the same, and that I am “unhinged”. So I responded.
“Actually, it is. She was one speaker out of 20 some speakers and musicians, in ONE city. And yet she is being used as the example for ALL people who went to that event, no matter what city they were in, or where they were worldwide – because one of these events decided it was a good thing to let her speak. Stupid idea – on that we can agree.
And addendum to the post of the other day, regarding safety pins.
If you refuse help from someone when you need it because they’re wearing a safety pin, you are not “woke”. If you use your situation as a weapon against others just trying to help, you are not “woke”. If you use your credentials as a writer, and your position in life to attempt to silence others who are doing their best to get out there and at least try to make things better, you are the furthest from “woke” as you could possibly be without crossing the lines into bigotry.
For those all offended by this idea of the safety pin, please explain how your lambasting, anger over your personal condition, and clear inherent distrust of those at least trying does a thing to make any of it better. You may not see the effort as grand enough, but this effort “matters to that starfish”.
Focus on being a better person yourself, and stop hating on those who are attempting to do the same.
I’m responding to Mr. Christopher Keelty, who wrote a blog post that went viral, stating “Dear White People, Your Safety Pins Are Embarrassing”. NO, I’m not going to give Mr. Keelty the page views by posting a link. I will give you in context quotes, However.
“Let me explain something, white people: We just fucked up. Bad. We elected a racist demagogue who has promised to do serious harm to almost every person who isn’t a straight white male, and whose rhetoric has already stirred up hate crimes nationwide. White people were 70% of the voters in the 2016 election, and we’re the only demographic Trump won. It doesn’t matter why. What matters is there’s a white nationalist moving into the Oval Office, and white people — only white people — put him there.
We don’t get to make ourselves feel better by putting on safety pins and self-designating ourselves as allies.”
He then went on to say that we are all guilty, because all if it is white people’s fault. We all are the white people voted for Trump, apparently.The ones on the internet, reading this. And apparently, we ALL did it. Every one of us. No matter how we actually voted, it all our faults. That’s the not so implied implication of his post.
Here’s what I have to say in return.
Yeah, I self designated at some point way back in elementary school without even thinking about it – I stood by kids I hardly knew when they were getting bullied, and I got in trouble with the school for doing so. I got in fistfights with a couple bullies in elementary and junior high. All through high school and college, I got drunk friends -male and female- out of bad party situations, even when I was threatened for doing so.
Not because of who YOU are, but because of who I am.
And oh yeah, Black lives matter. I don’t need to be wandering about in a t shirt that says that, because by your standards, that t shirt is as meaningless as the safety pin. It’s what you actually DO, not what you wear and talk about with your other “privilege class” friends, or a blog post shaming folks. It’s what you do. Stop talking and do something. I have, and I always will, as long as I am physically and mentally able. Can you say the same?
I’m tired. Not physically, but socially, and emotionally. I’m tired of people – not all people – just some people. I’m not tired of social media, though likely I should be.
OK Then, No More Compliments For You
I’m tired of people telling others what kind of compliments they won’t accept from others and trying to expand their personal issues with it to cover a whole group of people because of the “For a” status. I’m sorry, when did compliments become a back thing? If I think you’re good at what you do, I tell you. I’ll probably get specific, like “I really liked how you handled that unruly class today”, or “I really like your style of writing, especially in _____” . I put no “for a” in there. Hell, folks, I don’t even usually know your skin color, your age, and in some forums, your sex or your name, because I deal with you in a social media setting and I don’t profile stalk you – I take you at face value for what you present and nothing more.
Yes, I’ve dealt with those kind of backhanded compliments all my life – ALL of us have. “You run fast – for a girl”, “you’re very understanding of your students – for a teacher”, “you sure know a lot about social issues – for a white person”, “You’re pretty knowledgeable about current events – for a museum docent”. I’m sure we could all make this kind of list. There’s always some insecure fuck out there who makes themselves feel better by giving out backhanded compliments. The best way to deal with people like that? Treat their compliments as if you’re totally social cue clueless and as if they were the most sincere thing you’ve heard in months. Pisses them right the fuck off.
And I’ve also been uncomfortable when people gush compliments all over you, especially for something you did for someone else. I get that. That’s cool. Take it gracefully, try to back out of the situation where the person keeps gushing all over you (cellphones have been great for this – you can now fake an incoming phone call). I’ve used the “thanks, I have to go pick up my kids now” excuse in the past- no longer works when people know they are full grown- so I’ve used the “I’ve got to go pick up my husband” excuse as well. Unless, of course, he’s standing right with me. he’s rescued me from this a time or two, thankfully. But at the end of the day, not being able to take that gushing of compliments is from my OWN insecurities, and is MY own problem to deal with. It’s not for me to dictate to others their ability to pay me a compliment. STFU and deal with this problem yourself. If you see a “For A” in every compliment given you, then that is on YOU and is NOT EVER going to become my burden.
Also at issue is the people who say things like this because of their insecurities, but then when they don’t get compliments, they throw huge old hissy fits any self respecting toddler would be proud of. They liken it to people having no respect for them. Umm, excuse me, people WERE showing respect for you by not giving compliments as you asked for earlier, and now your insecurities have you acting the part of attention whore. Get on your drama llama and ride!
Wait a Minute, How Did I Become The Bad Guy?
Goes right along with the last section, and I’ve been looking for the right term for it. I’m not finding it. I’m tired of being the bad guy when I wasn’t the bad guy to start. I’ve had this happen all my life as well, even when other people – and the majority of other people agreed with me- that asking someone else to stop a behavior, or asking someone – sincerely – why they believe that way or wanting some form of reasonable explanation, I suddenly get someone jumping my shit as a bad guy for asking. If we tie it back to that last thing, I asked if this person meant any compliments to a certain group of people, and she prevaricated. I pointed out that any kind of comment can be seen as backhanded. And then I got told that no, this person gets a pass on being offended because she belongs to that certain group.
Wait a minute – I thought the main goal of all groups, ethnic, sexual, disabled, etc was to be treated the same as any other person – which leaves you accountable for everything that everyone else does. It doesn’t mean you get to be a an asshole just because you’re in a wheelchair. It doesn’t mean I get to be a jerk to people because I’m an older woman. It doesn’t mean any of that. If you want to be treated equally, that means in ALL things – socially, mentally, financially – all of it. It means there’s no free pass based on the group you count yourself as part of. But I was the bad guy for asking this person about it, trying to get a logical reason for the issue. If they had said “Please don’t give me these kind of compliments because it makes ME feel as if there is a “for a” at the end, and that bothers me.” Cool. I can deal with that. But don’t come compliment begging later, OK?
Or when a situation is out of hand – or whatever reason – and you step in when no one else will. The original perpetrators end up coming off as innocents, and you are the bad buy because you stepped in – verbally, physically, or in writing on social media. Usually by someone who has no dog in the race, so to speak, but finds you and singles you out as treating the poor bully badly – by asking them to stop. Wow.
But this happens every day in every school across the country. Kids are bullied and picked on, and when they stand up for themselves, often they are the ones punished. Or if they stand up for a friend, they are the bad guy, the criminal, and the true problem folk get off scott free. Happens online hourly.
Guess I’m good at attracting attention, eh? I have a feeling I could be in a room of 100 people, all saying the exact same things, same tone, same words, and I’d still be singled out. But that’s my issue, isn’t it? 😉
Why Did You Move Here Then?
I’m tired of the people who move to a small town, a rural community, a mountain area because it’s so much better than living in the city, and within a month, they’re bored living there. They want to change street names, build yet another community center (because driving for half an hour is SUCH an inconvenience, yet they’d not blink twice at doing it in the city), want to bring store like Crate and Barrel into a small town where it wouldn’t thrive, and they complain about how they can’t find enough to fill their days, and they don’t know how to meet people.
Once again, personal issues that are not my problem, buy you suddenly make them my problem by insisting on changes to the community. These are the folks that go to community meeting, petition, all this stuff to bring things to the rural areas that really don’t belong there and most of the people don’t want. But they have tenacity, they keep being the squeaky wheel, and most often, they have a lot of money to make things happen. And then when those things happen, and changes are made, they move. Why? Because this place is to citified now. And then the businesses fail, and locals are left with empty eyesores that need to be torn down, but no one can afford to do so. Do us a favor, stay in the city in the first place. Please.
There Is No Such Thing as Libtards or Repubtards
I’m tired of people blaming everything on political parties without realizing it’s much much bigger than a few union reps or school teachers. If you’re still blaming individuals, or party lines, or best of all- blaming the president and his “black agenda” and focused on a birth certificate from overseas that doesn’t exist, congratulations. You are EXACTLY where the ruling elite of the country wants you to be, not actually paying attention to the REAL issues, the real state of the economy, the real state of the world. If they can keep baffling enough of you with bullshit, they won’t get a reenactment of the French Revolution in their lifetimes.
But seriously – do some damn research and stop blaming this side or that side for stuff. Stop taking the easy excuse, the easy lay of the blame, the lack of responsibility on your own part and learn something.
I have more, but now I really am physically tired. Time for some lunch.
Jim Wright is an excellent writer. You NEED to read his most recent post- it’s yet another reason why I am so disgusted this week.