Celebrating difference

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Dextrose
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Celebrating difference

Postby Dextrose » Mon Apr 14, 2008 2:15 am UTC

So I just saw this in a certain user's signature:

"If you talk about race, it does not make you a racist. If you see distinctions between the genders, it does not make you sexist. ... If you accept but don't celebrate homosexuality, it does not make you a homophobe." -- Charlton Heston

Well, I agree with the first two parts of that statement. He's absolutely right. The third part, and I think this is where Charlie shows his true colours, is where the logic goes awry. The proper epistrophe (I never get to use that word, I hope I used it right, gollygosh) there would be something along the lines of, "If you believe in the differences between straights and gays, it does not make you a homophobe." But no, the statement Heston made was different: if you accept but do not celebrate homosexuality, ....

That, my friends, is hateful language. That is the language of somebody who is saying that they do not approve of homosexuality but doesn't want to say they don't approve of it. Literally, I can't think of any other connotation to the phrase "accept but do not celebrate". I believe the races of this world are fundamentally different in certain ways. I believe that men and women are fundamentally different in certain ways. I believe that straight people and gay people are fundamentally different in certain ways. The difference between me and Charlton (what a dumb name) is that I do celebrate those differences.

I think there's basically two places you can stand on this issue:
1) You can be happy about the fact that people are different and acknowledge the fact that it really doesn't matter. The advantage to this is that all the racist, nationalist, sexist, homophobic jokes in the world are fucking hilarious, especially when you tell them to the people you're degrading and they're laughing with you.
2) You can actually be racist, nationalist, sexist, or homophobic. And that makes you an asshole.

Now, the claim I can see Charlton Heston making is that he doesn't care if people are gay. I don't believe that for a second. Because if he didn't care, he wouldn't be talking about it. And if he doesn't care, I suggest he - and anyone who agrees with him - belt it.

Charlton Heston cares. He cares because he doesn't like it and because he can't be a dick enough to disapprove of it without being told off by Smart People.

I care too. (And not just because I want to know whether the cutie who lives across from me is romantically interested in the chick he hangs with all the time.) I care because...well, what's the point in not caring? Is it really useful for us to go, "Men never ask for directions...meh." I think we should point out, understand, and - hell - laugh at our differences as much and as well as we can. Yes - I think everybody should celebrate, without prejudice, everything that's wrong with everybody. I think that the people pushing this "We are all one people" shit are misguided idiots, we are not one people, we're one species with a lot of different categorisations, and that's what's awesome.

I believe that if you're one of those people that doesn't celebrate the differences other people have with you, you're a bigot. "Accept but not celebrate" is almost an oxymoron. It's not acceptance. And believe me, any of you assholes who say "Oh...you're bi, that's cool...I don't agree with it, but it's cool..." - it's not cool to say that, and I (we) don't appreciate it. I know when someone accepts the fact that I'm not straight, because they can call me faggot and I don't feel like I'm being ripped on.


Point I'm trying to make here: Don't - please - pretend like you're accepting of people that you really don't like deep down. If you don't like a group of people, be honest about it and bloody say so. Lying so we don't get pissed off at you for having a shitty reason not to like somebody doesn't make you a better person. And ignoring via PC language the differences that people get ridiculed for doesn't solve the problem either. In fact, that's about the most irritating thing I can think of - I want to be referred to as "living an alternative lifestyle" about as much as Jesse Jackson wants to be told he's "wearing an alternative skintone."

And if you have an alternative opinion, you can sport some alternative headwear.
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Re: Celebrating difference

Postby Quixotess » Mon Apr 14, 2008 2:25 am UTC

I agree. I never liked that quote. (I can't remember whose signature it was, so don't take it personally!)

The whole thing with talking about race and gender is that you're actively trying to figure out the differences, see where there might be inequalities so you can fix them, and try to understand each other's experiences. It is a celebration in a way. You're having an honest discussion between two groups in a search for greater understanding, unity, and friendliness.

But when he says "accept but don't celebrate," what that sounds like to me is a statement that Heston is not interested in a discussion. "Look, you can fuck guys if you want, just don't tell me about it." Which is trying to avoid understanding and unity. It's saying "Hey, I don't want to know about you." And that does make you a homophobe.

I really hate bigoted jokes, though. They're just not funny to me, and I do get offended by them. Sexism != hilarious.
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Re: Celebrating difference

Postby DarkKnightJared » Mon Apr 14, 2008 2:58 am UTC

I think it's safe to say that if you have to say something like what Heston said, you've ever messed up real time (for example, "I'm not racist--I have friends that are black!") or you've messed up so many times that you start from the beginning like that. If you really believe in something, it should be able to come out in your words and actions.

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Re: Celebrating difference

Postby Wormwood » Mon Apr 14, 2008 3:15 am UTC

It's Vaniver's signature.

I accept homosexuality as existing, but I do not celebrate it. How does one celebrate homosexuality? I don't think I would enjoy a gay pride parade, not being the type of person that like flashy colours and parade type stuff. I could watch Brokeback Mountain, but that's just good actors and a thought-provoking story, as well as some cool scenery. It's easy to celebrate a particular ethnic culture, as I could go to a rugby game, or Polyfest, or a traditional Chinese allet or whatever. But celebrating homosexuality seems a little weird for someone who isn't gay.

I may have a different meaning of the word celebrate.
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Re: Celebrating difference

Postby Adalwolf » Mon Apr 14, 2008 5:02 am UTC

How does one 'celebrate' difference?

I think accepting that people are different is enough. You don't have to be happy they are different (you don't have to be mad either), just know that people are different, and let them be different.
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Re: Celebrating difference

Postby tetromino » Mon Apr 14, 2008 5:12 am UTC

If taken literally, Charlton Heston's quote is something that I do agree with. I will celebrate my culture, my heritage, my sexuality - because I care about me and the things that define me. And I will celebrate the things that are important to my friends - because I genuinely care about my friends and their lives.

But humanity in general? Please. Why should I be happy, or sad, or need to express any emotion whatsoever, about the ways that gays and straights in general are different? Perhaps it's really important to Joe Random that he is Irish/bisexual/otaku/a fan of speedmetal. Good for him, but I don't care. As far as I am concerned, he can win the lottery tomorrow, or he can slip on a patch of ice, and I wouldn't bat an eyelid. His life don't affect me none - well, unless he annoys me. If Joe Random forces me to celebrate his thoroughly uninteresting sexuality while I am busy thinking about something that matters (e.g. my friend who is breaking up with her girlfriend of four years), there is a very good chance that I will get annoyed.

Now, the claim I can see Charlton Heston making is that he doesn't care if people are gay. I don't believe that for a second. Because if he didn't care, he wouldn't be talking about it. And if he doesn't care, I suggest he - and anyone who agrees with him - belt it.

Sir, are you seriously suggesting that anyone who does not celebrate the difference between gay and straight has no right to voice their thoughts? That I have no right to talk about human sexuality if I do not celebrate your favorite version of it? With all due respect, that is one of the more frightening ideas I've seen voiced on this forum.



PS. I have no idea whether Heston was a homophobe; to be honest, I know almost nothing about him. I am merely addressing the literal meaning of his words.
PPS. I want to make it absolutely clear that the Joe Random character I've described is entirely unrelated to any participant in this thread.

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Re: Celebrating difference

Postby Sour Apple » Mon Apr 14, 2008 5:28 am UTC

Okay, I was attracted to this thread because one term I really like is "celebrating difference." That's because I marvel at the different backgrounds people bring to the world and enjoy that.

However, I'm somewhat of a sexist because I like boys and don't mind letting them take charge once in a while and realize that girls shouldn't play football, and I happen to really dislike bisexuals because they can't decide which sex they like best. Still I'm accepting of the fact that my hatred of rabid feminism or the bisexual lifestyle changes nothing.

Ergo, isn't it all right to go around disliking the way someone lives without shouting about it? I think that was Heston's point, and I agree with it. I accept bisexuality as a fact, without dancing in the streets about it (which would be a lie) OR lighting your house on fire.
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Re: Celebrating difference

Postby Jjarro » Mon Apr 14, 2008 5:30 am UTC

Vaniver picked that signature up from a link in the thread discussing Charlton Heston's death.

It's taken from a speech Mr. Heston delivered at Harvard Law School. The full text is here.

I'd be interested to know why he excluded the comment about religion. The full excerpt is:

Charlton Heston wrote:If you talk about race, it does not make you a racist. If you see distinctions between the genders, it does not make you sexist. If you think critically about a denomination, it does -- does not make you anti-religion. If you accept but don't celebrate homosexuality, it does not make you a homophobe.


It might be because the religion bit breaks up the flow and pattern of the quote, but I really don't know.

As for "accepting but not celebrating," have you ever heard the phrase "agree to disagree?" I think that's what he's retaining the right to do, there. He disagrees with homosexual's personal choices, but doesn't feel he has the right or the authority to try to change or deter them. The speech is about, essentially, freedom of expression vs. Basic Human Decency. He doesn't want to be accused of using "hateful language" just because he disagrees with a practice. He's not a "homophobe" just because he is only willing to accept homosexuality as a personal choice, and not to encourage that choice or the people who make it. Disagreement and irrational fear/hatred are different.

As a matter of fact, he's being very careful to avoid anything that could be misconstrued as hateful language. To call what he said hateful language is the exact kind of free–discourse–quashing reaction he's talking about. He's saying that he shouldn't have to celebrate, encourage or pretend to take pleasure in something he dislikes, for whatever reason.

Dextrose, he's saying that if you disagree with him, you shouldn't have to celebrate his views and practices. Do you disagree with this point? Or would you rather accept but not celebrate/encourage/enjoy his point of view? Agree to disagree?

The alternative is for one of you to require that the other one change their view because there is a disagreement.

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Re: Celebrating difference

Postby Izawwlgood » Mon Apr 14, 2008 5:32 am UTC

I don't think this makes him a homophobe at all. It simply means he chooses not to participate in a homosexual life style, something for which we cannot call him homophobic.

To put in short, one can respect and allow others to do as they will, without actually agreeing, believing in, or wanting to participate in said activities, and not be considered anti-that thing.

Frankly, if he's uncomfortable with homosexuality, blacks, or women, that doesn't make him homophobic, racist or sexist, just a human being with faults. As long as he's not making rash decisions based on those fears, who the hell are we to condemn him?
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Re: Celebrating difference

Postby Freakish » Mon Apr 14, 2008 5:44 am UTC

lol, I love the irony. How can you really see this as as bigotry? I read it as being fine with homosexuality without having to praise it "It's great that your gay". I completely agree with him in that aspect, because it's not great... *Long awkward pause* ...That's not to say it's bad. It just 'is'. Just to be clear. In regards to greatness (straight=gay).
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Re: Celebrating difference

Postby Quixotess » Mon Apr 14, 2008 5:56 am UTC

Wormwood wrote:It's Vaniver's signature.
Uhhhhh-oh.

Anyway, I looked up the context for that quote, and it was said in an incredibly bigoted speech, which makes me revise my opinion of what the quote was trying to say. Here's the URL if you're interested. http://www.americanrhetoric.com/speeches/charltonhestonculturalwar.htm

Right, so here's the quote again:
Spoilered for rambling.
Spoiler:
If you talk about race, it does not make you a racist.
Besides this being the "a racist" phenomenon that I've ranted about before, I'm starting to think that this does not have the charitable meaning that I gave it previously. I thought "talk about race" meant "have a discussion with people of different races about your different experiences, in order to come to a better understanding of each other and address inequalities." Given what he said about having "white pride" and how people are nice to Ice-T because he's black, I'm going to venture that he's not really interested in hearing about the other side.

If you talk about race in the sense of you making statements about other races without inviting a response from the people who lived it, then that's probably a good sign that you're racist. "Most criminals are black people." "Black people aren't really discriminated against anymore." <--Racist, or at least ill-informed.

If you see distinctions between the genders, it does not make you sexist.
And this one, I also thought it meant "examine where the distinctions come from" but I'm starting to think not so much. If this means "make generalizations about genders as if they are fact, the natural order, or not worthy of further discussion" then yeah, that makes you sexist.

"Women are bad at math" <--Sexist, or at least ill-informed. Why? Because it generalizes, and because it does not provide context. Even if we modified it to "most women would be outperformed on a math test than most men" that wouldn't be good enough because it doesn't examine why. (Answer: Because women are socialized away from math by, among others, people who tell them that women aren't good at math.)

Also, of course, if it is ever used to justify keeping these differences the way they are then that is sexist as well.


... If you accept but don't celebrate homosexuality, it does not make you a homophobe.
Like I said before, this just looks like "I don't want to hear about it," which is not acceptance.

Wormwood wrote:I accept homosexuality as existing, but I do not celebrate it. How does one celebrate homosexuality? I don't think I would enjoy a gay pride parade, not being the type of person that like flashy colours and parade type stuff. I could watch Brokeback Mountain, but that's just good actors and a thought-provoking story, as well as some cool scenery. It's easy to celebrate a particular ethnic culture, as I could go to a rugby game, or Polyfest, or a traditional Chinese allet or whatever. But celebrating homosexuality seems a little weird for someone who isn't gay.
You know, I don't think anyone will insist that you go to a gay pride parade. But you're fine with people having a gay pride parade, right? I mean, people can have a parade about any damn thing they want, right? The sense I get from the quote is that Heston would say "Hey, why would you want a gay pride parade? That makes me uncomfortable; why do you feel the need to flaunt your sexuality?" That would be homophobia to me.

Also, I think you can celebrate homosexuality if you aren't gay, just like you can celebrate Chinese culture if you aren't Chinese.
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Re: Celebrating difference

Postby Izawwlgood » Mon Apr 14, 2008 6:05 am UTC

Quixotess wrote:ike I said before, this just looks like "I don't want to hear about it," which is not acceptance.


This has always bugged me. I don't need to embrace and cheer you on to be supportive of your right to do what you want, and further more, I don't need to be comfortable with it. If you want to do [activity] and it's not hurting anyone, I may be disgusted with it, but that doesn't make me anti-[activity] until I single YOU out for doing said activity.

In fact, rubbing someone's face in the fact that they aren't comfortable with something that is now main stream is more unacceptable then their being uncomfortable was in the first place! His quote does not make him homophobic, but the adverse reactions to it point to a lot of peoples homophobic-phobism (er, metaphobism)
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Re: Celebrating difference

Postby Jjarro » Mon Apr 14, 2008 6:31 am UTC

In doing internet research, I found that people's reactions to his address to the "Free Congress Foundation" were generally far worse. So I went to find the worst thing on the internet attributed to Mr. Heston on the subject of homosexuality. It's excluded from some of the other transcripts of that address. I found it here. I don't find this particular site to be a particularly trustworthy source (I've added several previously omitted spaces between words in the excerpt below, for instance), which is why my quote tags say "probably." I don't doubt Mr. Heston would say something like this.

Edit! I just had to look for a site with an interest in discrediting Heston and an interest in maintaining as much of their own credibility as possible to find a good transcript. It can be found here.

Here it is:

Charlton Heston... probably... no, almost certainly wrote:The gay and lesbian movement is another good example. Many homosexuals are hugely talented artists and executives… also dear friends. I don’t despise their lifestyle, though I don’t share it. As long as gay and lesbian Americans are as productive, law-abiding and private as the rest of us, I think America owes them absolute tolerance. It’s the right thing to do.

On the other hand, I find my blood pressure rising when Clinton’s cultural shock troops participate in gay-rights fundraisers but boycott gun-rights fundraisers… and then claim it’s time to place homosexual men in tents with Boy Scouts, and suggest that sperm donor babies born into lesbian relationships are somehow better served and more loved.

Such demands have nothing to do with equality. They’re about the currency of cultural war – money and votes – and the Clinton camp will let anyone in the tent if there’s a donkey on the hat, a check in the mail or some yen in the fortune cookie.


To those who are offended by the original quote, this is likely to be far worse than what they'll find by following the link Quixotiss and I both previously posted to the Heston speech the original quote is from.

Personally, I don't substantively disagree with what he says, though I see how it could be seen as upsetting. Actually, plenty of people did find it upsetting - here's a series of reactions to the speech hosted by a pro gun-control group.
Last edited by Jjarro on Mon Apr 14, 2008 6:38 am UTC, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Celebrating difference

Postby tetromino » Mon Apr 14, 2008 6:37 am UTC

Quixotess, thanks for the link.

Quixotess wrote:
If you talk about race, it does not make you a racist.
Besides this being the "a racist" phenomenon that I've ranted about before, I'm starting to think that this does not have the charitable meaning that I gave it previously. I thought "talk about race" meant "have a discussion with people of different races about your different experiences, in order to come to a better understanding of each other and address inequalities." Given what he said about having "white pride" and how people are nice to Ice-T because he's black, I'm going to venture that he's not really interested in hearing about the other side.

Given that Heston apparently marched with MLK, I would guess that he very much was interested in hearing what black people were saying. At least back in the 1960's. It also sounds reasonable that some people failed to criticize Ice-T because of his race. Cop Killer was released in March 1992, the same month as the Rodney King beating. I am guessing that the tensions between the black community and the authorities were running high, and people probably wanted to tiptoe around racially sensitive issues, even if it meant giving a vicious song a free ride.

As for white pride - I do agree with you, that does sound absurd. Not because the white race is inferior, but simply because in the US, thanks to their long-standing dominant position, whites have no culture of their own. If you are trying to celebrate "white pride", you may as well celebrate old-fashioned American values.

If you see distinctions between the genders, it does not make you sexist.
And this one, I also thought it meant "examine where the distinctions come from" but I'm starting to think not so much. If this means "make generalizations about genders as if they are fact, the natural order, or not worthy of further discussion" then yeah, that makes you sexist.
Some generalizations about genders (e.g. average upper-body strength) are valid. Most (e.g intelligence) are bullshit. However, I did not see Heston making any generalizations about genders in his speech. Perhaps I missed something?

... If you accept but don't celebrate homosexuality, it does not make you a homophobe.
Like I said before, this just looks like "I don't want to hear about it," which is not acceptance.

There are many things I don't much care to hear about. If I am not interested in talking about your new BMW bike, does that mean I am not accepting of motorcycle owners?

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Re: Celebrating difference

Postby taarnling » Mon Apr 14, 2008 6:45 am UTC

Okay, here's the thing. Some people aren't comfortable with gay people. They get upset when people say that they should be comfortable with it.

Izawwlgood wrote:In fact, rubbing someone's face in the fact that they aren't comfortable with something that is now main stream is more unacceptable then their being uncomfortable was in the first place! His quote does not make him homophobic, but the adverse reactions to it point to a lot of peoples homophobic-phobism (er, metaphobism)


You should get comfortable with it. Unless you think it's a bad thing, there is no reason to be uncomfortable with it. All you've got to lose is being uncomfortable. You're acting like people are wrong for wanting you to be comfortable with someone who is different from you.

Edit: I meant to say something about Sour Apple's statements here and forgot.
Sour Apple wrote:Okay, I was attracted to this thread because one term I really like is "celebrating difference." That's because I marvel at the different backgrounds people bring to the world and enjoy that.

However, I'm somewhat of a sexist because I like boys and don't mind letting them take charge once in a while and realize that girls shouldn't play football, and I happen to really dislike bisexuals because they can't decide which sex they like best. Still I'm accepting of the fact that my hatred of rabid feminism or the bisexual lifestyle changes nothing.

Ergo, isn't it all right to go around disliking the way someone lives without shouting about it? I think that was Heston's point, and I agree with it. I accept bisexuality as a fact, without dancing in the streets about it (which would be a lie) OR lighting your house on fire.


First, why shouldn't girls play football? Sure, some girls are outclassed in the height/weight department and would get creamed. So are some guys. There is no call for making general statements like "girls shouldn't play football." That leads to all sorts of badness.

Second, why should people have to choose whether they like guys or girls? Honestly, are we all on teams or soemthing? It's like saying you should have to choose between chocolate and vanilla ice cream.

Yes, if you don't like the way someone lives you shouldn't shout about it. But homosexuality isn't about how people live. It's about how people are. There is no call for disliking how people are. If you don't think that homosexuality is a bad thing, then why do you dislike it? if you do think homosexuality is a bad thing, why?
Last edited by taarnling on Mon Apr 14, 2008 6:58 am UTC, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Celebrating difference

Postby tetromino » Mon Apr 14, 2008 6:56 am UTC

taarnling:
What if I am comfortable with gay people, but I am uncomfortable with people telling me I should be comfortable with the people with whom I already am comfortable? :twisted:

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Re: Celebrating difference

Postby Nath » Mon Apr 14, 2008 6:57 am UTC

taarnling wrote:You should get comfortable with it. Unless you think it's a bad thing, there is no reason to be uncomfortable with it. All you've got to lose is being uncomfortable. You're acting like people are wrong for wanting you to be comfortable with someone who is different from you.

This would be true, if people had complete control over whether anything made them uncomfortable. They don't.

Are there certain kinds of food you don't like? Why not start liking them? All you have to lose is not liking those kinds of food.

Do you see my point? People have likes and dislikes. As long as they don't try to impose their preferences on anybody else, there's nothing wrong with people disliking things. They aren't broken. They don't need to be fixed.

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Re: Celebrating difference

Postby schmiggen » Mon Apr 14, 2008 6:59 am UTC

taarnling wrote:You should get comfortable with it. Unless you think it's a bad thing, there is no reason to be uncomfortable with it. All you've got to lose is being uncomfortable. You're acting like people are wrong for wanting you to be comfortable with someone who is different from you.

I don't think BSDM is a bad thing, but I am uncomfortable with it. That only means I wouldn't be interested in it myself, and can't really empathize with people for whom it appeals. But you still think I should get comfortable with it?

tetromino wrote:As for white pride - I do agree with you, that does sound absurd. Not because the white race is inferior, but simply because in the US, thanks to their long-standing dominant position, whites have no culture of their own. If you are trying to celebrate "white pride", you may as well celebrate old-fashioned American values.


Err, so all black Americans share a cultural history?

Something stinks of double-standard. Why is this common cultural history you see blacks sharing worthier than "old-fashioned American values" as something to be proud of?
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Re: Celebrating difference

Postby btilly » Mon Apr 14, 2008 7:05 am UTC

From the same speech that quote appeared in:
Charlton Heston wrote:I've worked with brilliantly talented homosexuals all my life -- throughout my whole career. But when I told an audience that gay rights should extend no further than your rights or my rights, I was called a homophobe.

I would personally take what he said at face value. Homosexuals are people and should have exactly the rights that any other people have. Nothing more or less. Sure, people might take his phrasing poorly. But I see no reason to believe that he was homophobic. Even in the unlikely possibility that he was uncomfortable with homosexuality, he was still open minded enough to say that they deserved equal treatment, and to have no problem working closely with homosexuals and recognizing their talents. (See the quote that tetromino dug up.)

He just doesn't choose to celebrate homosexuality. Which is perfectly reasonable to me. So you're a guy who wants to fuck guys. Or a gal who likes screwing other gals. Wonderful. Enjoy. But don't bother inviting me to your party, because I'm a guy who has no interest in fucking or being fucked by guys. And your joy at having this desire is not really on my priority list. And don't expect me to think you deserve special treatment because of your sexuality.

In fact this is not only reasonable to me, this is pretty much how I feel as well.

According to several comments here, this makes me a homophobe in your eyes. Or if I'm not a homophobe, I must be uncomfortable with homosexuals and homosexuality. I can't control what beliefs you have of me. But I've never noticed any homophobic tendencies in myself. Or any discomfort with homosexuality. I just have no interest. And no problem with homosexuals. For example when I got a break last Saturday to go out and enjoy myself, I joined the first decent volleyball game I could. I wound up spending 2 hours playing volleyball with a bunch of gay guys. It was a complete non-issue. (One was disappointed to find out that I was married and completely straight, but hey, that's life.)

Quixotess wrote:
Wormwood wrote:It's Vaniver's signature.
Uhhhhh-oh.

Anyway, I looked up the context for that quote, and it was said in an incredibly bigoted speech, which makes me revise my opinion of what the quote was trying to say. Here's the URL if you're interested. http://www.americanrhetoric.com/speeches/charltonhestonculturalwar.htm

I strongly disagree with you about how bigoted the speech is. However I'm not surprised that you personally thought it was bigoted. It isn't the first time you've overreacted and found offense where no offense should have been taken.

See viewtopic.php?p=621841#p621841 for another example. I didn't respond there because it was offtopic and the moderators were already getting restless. But here are some hints for you. First of all commenting on how common a trait is among people I know is very different than subscribing to the belief that things should be that way or encouraging people to be that way. Secondly I was probably reading feminist literature before you learned to read. And I'm married to a woman who has probably been a feminist longer than you've been alive. (If you're under 24 then both of my probably's are true. According to the poll that was taken, most people on this forum are younger than 24.)

In the future I suggest that if you get offended at what I say, you should try to re-read what I wrote multiple times trying to find a point of view that could mean that but not actually be offensive. Because that's likely to be more accurate than whatever you're taking offense at. The odds change when it comes to other people, but it is still generally a good idea to give the benefit of the doubt.
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Re: Celebrating difference

Postby Quixotess » Mon Apr 14, 2008 7:08 am UTC

Yeah, Jjarro, that's pretty damn offensive.

Tetromino wrote:Given that Heston apparently marched with MLK, I would guess that he very much was interested in hearing what black people were saying.
Huh-uh. Not given that speech. I know that Charles Heston was a liberal in the sixties but changed to a conservative somewhere around the eighties.

It also sounds reasonable that some people failed to criticize Ice-T because of his race. Cop Killer was released in March 1992, the same month as the Rodney King beating. I am guessing that the tensions between the black community and the authorities were running high, and people probably wanted to tiptoe around racially sensitive issues, even if it meant giving a vicious song a free ride.
Given that context, that does sound more reasonable. It also seems like a reasonable thing to do, and he presented it out of context.

There are many things I don't much care to hear about. If I am not interested in talking about your new BMW bike, does that mean I am not accepting of motorcycle owners?
*Sigh* Does hearing about someone else's motorcycle make you uncomfortable? Do you think "Oh, people can have motorcycles, as long as they don't ride them in public"? When I say "uncomfortable hearing about homosexuality" it's not that it bores you, I mean it makes you uncomfortable. As in "Icky homosexuals."

Edit, and spoiler'd for off-topic.
Spoiler:
btilly wrote:See viewtopic.php?p=621841#p621841 for another example. I didn't respond there because it was offtopic and the moderators were already getting restless.
I wasn't offended. However, I'm not surprised that you personally thought I was. I was merely explaining some effects of saying "Women understand clothing and men don't," which you had not appeared to consider. If you noticed, Belial appeared to have the same reaction. This isn't just me being hyper-sensitive, although I admit it was off-topic.

But here are some hints for you. First of all commenting on how common a trait is among people I know is very different than subscribing to the belief that things should be that way or encouraging people to be that way. Secondly I was probably reading feminist literature before you learned to read. And I'm married to a woman who has probably been a feminist longer than you've been alive. (If you're under 24 then both of my probably's are true. According to the poll that was taken, most people on this forum are younger than 24.)
Thank you for your advice. I'm sure it is kindly meant. I am seventeen years old. I'm not sure what your point is, though--that you understand feminism better than I do? That you are immune to sexism? Well, in any case, this is probably not relevant. I'm not responding to your first point of advice because that would just get into that whole other discussion.

In the future I suggest that if you get offended at what I say, you should try to re-read what I wrote multiple times trying to find a point of view that could mean that but not actually be offensive. Because that's likely to be more accurate than whatever you're taking offense at. The odds change when it comes to other people, but it is still generally a good idea to give the benefit of the doubt.
Again, I wasn't offended. We all know that communication has multiple interpretations, and they're all important. I was explaining a side-effect of what you were saying.

Please, btilly, this whole post looks like you were holding your breath and waiting for a chance to jump on me after I made the post in the relationship thread. It's horribly off-topic and honestly pretty rude. I responded because I didn't want to let your accusations stand on their own...if you want to continue, maybe we should take it to PM.
Last edited by Quixotess on Mon Apr 14, 2008 7:24 am UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Celebrating difference

Postby taarnling » Mon Apr 14, 2008 7:14 am UTC

tetromino wrote:taarnling:
What if I am comfortable with gay people, but I am uncomfortable with people telling me I should be comfortable with the people with whom I already am comfortable? :twisted:


Why on earth would you be uncomfortable with that? Unless you're being silly that is? :P

Nath wrote:This would be true, if people had complete control over whether anything made them uncomfortable. They don't.

Are there certain kinds of food you don't like? Why not start liking them? All you have to lose is not liking those kinds of food.

Do you see my point? People have likes and dislikes. As long as they don't try to impose their preferences on anybody else, there's nothing wrong with people disliking things. They aren't broken. They don't need to be fixed.


As far as I see it, people are uncomfortable with things mainly because they're not familiar with them. Being uncomfortable isn't, in and of itself, wrong. Heck, I'm not comfortable with disabled people, people who don't speak good English, people with a different culture... There are a lot of people I'm not comfortable with. But I know that's because I haven't interacted with these people very much. There's nothing wrong with these people, I'm just not quite sure how to talk to them. I know that if I spent time with them, I'd get comfortable with them.

So actually, people do have control over whether anything makes them uncomfortable. Same goes for anything. I've got no problem with people who are uncomfortable with things. What pisses me of is people who are willfully uncomfortable with something, and unwilling to change.

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Re: Celebrating difference

Postby schmiggen » Mon Apr 14, 2008 7:24 am UTC

taarnling wrote:So actually, people do have control over whether anything makes them uncomfortable. Same goes for anything. I've got no problem with people who are uncomfortable with things. What pisses me of is people who are willfully uncomfortable with something, and unwilling to change.

Are you comfortable with, or willing to be comfortable with what the goat.se guys are doing? What about that guy who boned a table? In general, people do NOT have control over whether "anything" makes them uncomfortable. To say that familiarity is the only factor in uncomfortableness is patently false, even though you can use familiarity to increase your level of comfort with many things. You can't get used to everything.

Is anyone really advocating disliking individual homosexuals simply because the general idea of homosexuality makes them uncomfortable? 'cause it hasn't seemed to me that this is the case.
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Re: Celebrating difference

Postby joeframbach » Mon Apr 14, 2008 7:31 am UTC

taarnling wrote:You should get comfortable with it. Unless you think it's a bad thing, there is no reason to be uncomfortable with it. All you've got to lose is being uncomfortable. You're acting like people are wrong for wanting you to be comfortable with someone who is different from you.

This goes for both homophobes and homophobephobes.


I don't agree with the lifestyle, but I am comfortable with others who live this way. If you think this is an oxymoron and you dare to call me a homophobe, then you're WRONG, and you are a homophobephobe. It is not an oxymoron.

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Re: Celebrating difference

Postby Azrael001 » Mon Apr 14, 2008 7:53 am UTC

The irony in this thread is thick. Most of what I would have said (or wanted you say had I thought of it) has been said, but doesn't anyone find it odd that the people the most adamant about making sure that certain groups are accepted are unwilling to accept the view that it is find do disagree with something?

I'll be the first to admit that I am a bit homophobic. Guys who are flaming (including one of my friends) make me uncomfortable. I believe that they should have equal rights, but I still think that it's "icky". I do not (or try hard not to) treat people differently if I know that they are gay, that should be the important thing.

It is ridiculous to try to force people to "celebrate difference". Someone can be as different as they like, if someone is bald I don't have to celebrate that, or even like it (I like this analogy, some people have no choice and some people choose to do it), I don't care that someone is bald, and don't really care to find out more about baldness, that does not make me a baldyphobe.
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Re: Celebrating difference

Postby Cycle » Mon Apr 14, 2008 7:54 am UTC

Quixotess wrote: "Women are bad at math" <--Sexist, or at least ill-informed. Why? Because it generalizes, and because it does not provide context. Even if we modified it to "most women would be outperformed on a math test than most men" that wouldn't be good enough because it doesn't examine why. (Answer: Because women are socialized away from math by, among others, people who tell them that women aren't good at math.)


I don't understand why people assume things like this. That's not to say I disagree. What I am asking (which is somewhat off topic I guess), is why people assume the following statement:

"There is no direct correlation between physical traits and mental traits, ever."

As far as I know, there's absolutely no evidence to back this up. Yet people assume it as if it was obviously fact. People are attacked and called bigots for questioning it. If you're the president of Harvard, you'll lose your job for suggesting that it's possible that the above statement is false. Why?

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Re: Celebrating difference

Postby taarnling » Mon Apr 14, 2008 8:05 am UTC

schmiggen wrote:Are you comfortable with, or willing to be comfortable with what the goat.se guys are doing? What about that guy who boned a table? In general, people do NOT have control over whether "anything" makes them uncomfortable. To say that familiarity is the only factor in uncomfortableness is patently false, even though you can use familiarity to increase your level of comfort with many things. You can't get used to everything.

Is anyone really advocating disliking individual homosexuals simply because the general idea of homosexuality makes them uncomfortable? 'cause it hasn't seemed to me that this is the case.


Hmm, it seems like I riled some people here. I probably put some things badly, and I'm sorry. Not my intention to anger anyone.

I do think though, that you can get used to anything. Some things aren't worth getting used to of course, but it can be done. I think I could get used to goat.se if I tried. It's not worth doing, but I could. Some guy boning a table doesn't make me uncomfortable, but it does make me laugh.

And no, no one is advocating disliking individual homosexuals because the general idea of homosexuality makes them uncomfortable. But I do think that people treat people they are uncomfortable with different, whether they mean to or not. When you treat someone differently simply because of how they are, it can be really hurtful. I think it's worth getting comfortable with, in general, because there are plenty of homosexuals in the world. You almost certainly know people who are gay. You might not know it, but they are all the same.

joeframbach wrote:I don't agree with the lifestyle, but I am comfortable with others who live this way. If you think this is an oxymoron and you dare to call me a homophobe, then you're WRONG, and you are a homophobephobe. It is not an oxymoron.


Now, by 'don't agree with the lifestyle', do you mean that you think it's bad, or that it's not for you. Because if you think it's bad than I can't see any reason for you to be comfortable with it, but I'm glad that you are. If you think it's not for you and you're comfortable with others who live that way, great! That's exactly how it should be. No oxymoron, you're just being understanding

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Re: Celebrating difference

Postby schmiggen » Mon Apr 14, 2008 8:14 am UTC

taarnling wrote:I do think though, that you can get used to anything. Some things aren't worth getting used to of course, but it can be done. I think I could get used to goat.se if I tried. It's not worth doing, but I could. Some guy boning a table doesn't make me uncomfortable, but it does make me laugh.

I don't understand why you get to do this, but people who are uncomfortable with homosexuality (and, consequently, often homosexuals themselves) don't. Are goat.se-like people less worthy than homosexuals for some reason?(Don't worry, I'm not getting mad :P. I use caps/bold/italics for emphasis)


Cycle wrote:I don't understand why people assume things like this. That's not to say I disagree. What I am asking (which is somewhat off topic I guess), is why people assume the following statement:

"There is no direct correlation between physical traits and mental traits, ever."

As far as I know, there's absolutely no evidence to back this up. Yet people assume it as if it was obviously fact. People are attacked and called bigots for questioning it. If you're the president of Harvard, you'll lose your job for suggesting that it's possible that the above statement is false. Why?

I suppose people are afraid of seeing the opposite assumption used as an excuse to treat others badly. Assuming equality (before evidence) puts everyone on equal standing, which seems conducive to a peaceful/happy society. As someone put it in another thread recently: we'd like to reduce the number of type 2 errors with equality as a null hypothesis.

You can assume neither is true, but if you must interact with society, you eventually must act as if one or the other assumption were true, as there isn't really an in-between. (Either there is the possibility or not)
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Re: Celebrating difference

Postby sk8ingdom » Mon Apr 14, 2008 8:17 am UTC

For the Marxists:

1) History (defined by Marx as the battle over ideology) is over, liberal democracy and capitalism won.
2) In the new world identity has now replaced ideology.
3) Identity being fixed or mobile is inconsequential, what is important is the primacy of identity over ideology. (judithButler.view(identity)).equals(georgeBush.view(Identity)).
4) Instead of "difference" and epistemic violence, we should concentrate on structural inequities that are caused by structures such as the economy, the church, the school, etc.

"Huntington thinks that in “ideological conflicts,” the “key question” is, “Which side are you on?” In such conflicts, the question of which side you’re on is a question about what you believe, a question that cannot be answered by a statement about your identity. In the New World, where civilizations, not ideologies, clash, the question is not which side you’re on but, “What are you?” the difference between these two questions, Huntington thinks, is a difference between things that can and cannot “be changed.” You can change your beliefs; you can not change what you are. But if, as I began to suggest earlier, the science fiction reduction of what you are to where you are undoes this opposition, it does so only to the extent that the opposition really is founded on the question of what can and cannot be changed. The function of the opposition, in other words, is to assert that what matters is the question of whether your position can be changed. And this is just as true for all those on the cultural Left—insisting on mobility and the performative—as those like Huntington, on the cultural Right. Indeed, one way of describing the difference between the cultural Left and the cultural Right is precisely in terms of this difference over the nature of subject positions, over whether they are fixed and stable or mobile and unstable. But, as Butler’s imagination of the alien and Robinson’s imagination of the native enables us to see, it doesn’t matter whether your subject position is fixed or mobile—what matters is just that it is the subject position, an identity rather than an ideology. The emergence of the debate over whether identities are mobile or fixed is, in other words, really the emergence of a consensus about the primacy of identity."
...
"Another more controversial way to put it would be to say that this view of the ontology of the text carries with it—entrails—a parallel or complementary view of the position of the reader. I am arguing that anyone who thinks the text consists of its physical features (of what Derrida calls its marks) will be required also to think that the meaning of the text is crucially determined by the experience of its readers, and so the question of who the reader is—and the commitment to the materiality of the signifier. What this means is that figures who deepest commitments are to categories of racial or cultural difference (e.g. the political scientist Samuel B. Huntington and the novelist Toni Morrison) belong to the same formation as someone like de Man, who couldn’t have cares less about culture. To put the point in an implausible (but nonetheless, I will try to show, accurate) form, it means that if you hold, say Judith Butler’s view on resignification, you will also be required to hold, say, George W. Bush’s view on terrorism—and, scarier still, if you hold Bush’s views on terrorism, you must hold Butler’s view of resignification. The position, then, that you take, about whether those eighty-six blank pages should count as part of the text will generate other positions—not only on terrorism but also on more obviously literary questions like whether texts have more than one meaning, as well as on more generally social questions like whether it is important that we should (or whether it is true that we can) remember historical events like slavery and the Holocaust. And, to turn things around, the position you hold on the significance of the Holocaust will generate a position on whether the eighty-six blank pages must count as part of Thomas Shepard’s Autobiography."

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Re: Celebrating difference

Postby taarnling » Mon Apr 14, 2008 8:23 am UTC

I'm not saying I'm uncomfortable with the guy himself. I'm uncomfortable with the picture. Last time I checked, most gay people don't go around showing you pictures of what they do in private. Likewise, goat.se guy is unlikely to do his special act where anyone is likely to see. Therefore it's not worth getting used to. However, gay people are likely to be gay in public. And by that I mean hold hands, kiss, whatever. People should get used to it. I didn't mean to imply that people should get comfy with what everyone does in private, like BDSM or whatever else. But, unless you think it's wrong, you should get used to what people do in public.

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Re: Celebrating difference

Postby btilly » Mon Apr 14, 2008 8:25 am UTC

Quixotess wrote:
Tetromino wrote:Given that Heston apparently marched with MLK, I would guess that he very much was interested in hearing what black people were saying.
Huh-uh. Not given that speech. I know that Charles Heston was a liberal in the sixties but changed to a conservative somewhere around the eighties.

Sometimes labels just don't fit well. I don't know of a single statement or position that he took from the 80s onwards that was not in perfect agreement with positions he took in the 60s. However when he said that all people should be treated equally, regardless of race, he was thought liberal. When he said that gays should not get preferential treatment because they are gay, he was thought conservative. When he said that we should have the right to bear arms, he was thought an arch-conservative. But those positions are all in perfect agreement with each other. And he never stopped holding his "liberal" positions even though he was supposedly a "conservative".

I would welcome it if you came up with a significant inconsistency. I suspect you'll have trouble doing so.

About the spoiler, it is true that I was still trying to figure out how I wished to respond to your rant when we were told to not continue, and I let it drop. And so when I saw you wrongly characterize Charleton Heston as bigoted, I reacted.

As for the relevance of age, I'm not claiming to be immune from sexism, better educated, or anything else. I am claiming that I know more than you seem to think I know, and before launching into canned rants you should think very carefully about whether the shoe really fits or whether I might be saying something you didn't expect. Such as pointing out that widely known objective facts really don't have an agenda.

Also I can't resist noting that you are now quoting me as saying something I didn't say. I never said that women understand clothing and men don't. I said that most women of my aquaintance notice clothing and most men I know don't. That is true. For example if my wife and I try to figure out whether we're thinking of the same person she'll say things like, "the one who was wearing a yellow shirt" and that never helps because I never remember what people were wearing.
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Re: Celebrating difference

Postby Wormwood » Mon Apr 14, 2008 8:37 am UTC

Quixotess wrote:
Wormwood wrote:I accept homosexuality as existing, but I do not celebrate it. How does one celebrate homosexuality? I don't think I would enjoy a gay pride parade, not being the type of person that like flashy colours and parade type stuff. I could watch Brokeback Mountain, but that's just good actors and a thought-provoking story, as well as some cool scenery. It's easy to celebrate a particular ethnic culture, as I could go to a rugby game, or Polyfest, or a traditional Chinese ballet or whatever. But celebrating homosexuality seems a little weird for someone who isn't gay.


You know, I don't think anyone will insist that you go to a gay pride parade. But you're fine with people having a gay pride parade, right? I mean, people can have a parade about any damn thing they want, right? The sense I get from the quote is that Heston would say "Hey, why would you want a gay pride parade? That makes me uncomfortable; why do you feel the need to flaunt your sexuality?" That would be homophobia to me.

Also, I think you can celebrate homosexuality if you aren't gay, just like you can celebrate Chinese culture if you aren't Chinese.


Well, I'd be fine with neo-Nazis or certain church groups having anti-gay pride rallies as well. But how do I celebrate homosexuality without actually being gay? I wouldn't feel right taking part in the parade, for the same reason I wouldn't feel right taking part in a veterans parade. I could vote for political parties which support gay rights, but this is more a human rights issue.

If I accept that China exists, but never speak to a Chinese person in my life, never learn Mandarin, Chinese customs, etc, am I racist? No. I just can't be bothered or am not interested in China. If walking down the street behind 2 Chinese people, who are obviously being Chinese, does not affect me, positively or negatively, is it a bad thing?

I ask far too many rhetorical questions, don't I?
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Re: Celebrating difference

Postby taarnling » Mon Apr 14, 2008 8:43 am UTC

Wormwood wrote:Well, I'd be fine with neo-Nazis or certain church groups having anti-gay pride rallies as well. But how do I celebrate homosexuality without actually being gay? I wouldn't feel right taking part in the parade, for the same reason I wouldn't feel right taking part in a veterans parade. I could vote for political parties which support gay rights, but this is more a human rights issue.

If I accept that China exists, but never speak to a Chinese person in my life, never learn Mandarin, Chinese customs, etc, am I racist? No. I just can't be bothered or am not interested in China. If walking down the street behind 2 Chinese people, who are obviously being Chinese, does not affect me, positively or negatively, is it a bad thing?

I ask far too many rhetorical questions, don't I?


I don't think that's quite the right definition of celebrate. Or rather, I don't think 'celebrating difference' means quite what people think are using it to mean in general. I think that when people say that everyone should celebrate difference, they mostly mean that people should appreciate it, find it important and to be a generally good thing.

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Re: Celebrating difference

Postby Azrael001 » Mon Apr 14, 2008 8:58 am UTC

I don't like difference, if everyone was like me the world would be a much better, safer, peaceful place. People tend to surround themselves with people that are compatible with them, this is because people don't like things that are different. This is natural.
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Re: Celebrating difference

Postby Quixotess » Mon Apr 14, 2008 9:06 am UTC

taarnling wrote:
Wormwood wrote:Well, I'd be fine with neo-Nazis or certain church groups having anti-gay pride rallies as well. But how do I celebrate homosexuality without actually being gay? I wouldn't feel right taking part in the parade, for the same reason I wouldn't feel right taking part in a veterans parade. I could vote for political parties which support gay rights, but this is more a human rights issue.

If I accept that China exists, but never speak to a Chinese person in my life, never learn Mandarin, Chinese customs, etc, am I racist? No. I just can't be bothered or am not interested in China. If walking down the street behind 2 Chinese people, who are obviously being Chinese, does not affect me, positively or negatively, is it a bad thing?

I ask far too many rhetorical questions, don't I?


I don't think that's quite the right definition of celebrate. Or rather, I don't think 'celebrating difference' means quite what people think are using it to mean in general. I think that when people say that everyone should celebrate difference, they mostly mean that people should appreciate it, find it important and to be a generally good thing.

I think that's a great definition of "celebrate" in this case.
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Re: Celebrating difference

Postby schmiggen » Mon Apr 14, 2008 9:12 am UTC

Maybe there is a hidden disagreement here? By definition and connotation(I thought), celebration is active and appreciation is passive. Yes/no?
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Re: Celebrating difference

Postby Wormwood » Mon Apr 14, 2008 9:19 am UTC

schmiggen wrote:Maybe there is a hidden disagreement here? By definition and connotation(I thought), celebration is active and appreciation is passive. Yes/no?


Yeah, that's what I thought. Celebration is me taking part in opera, appreciation is me watching opera, acceptance is me not saying anything about opera, apart from acknowledging that it exists. Free speech is me being allowed to say I hate opera, hate speech is me saying that anyone the likes opera should be killed. I don't really have any issue with any of them, but society in general doesn't like the last one, and many people don't like the second to last.
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Re: Celebrating difference

Postby Spill Wooner » Mon Apr 14, 2008 9:26 am UTC

taarnling wrote:I don't think that's quite the right definition of celebrate. Or rather, I don't think 'celebrating difference' means quite what people think are using it to mean in general. I think that when people say that everyone should celebrate difference, they mostly mean that people should appreciate it, find it important and to be a generally good thing.


Empty statement, unless you think things like pedophilia, animal abuse, and racism also need to be "celebrated". Once you start excluding some differences, you then have to explain why certain things make the cut and others don't.

taarnling wrote:I'm not saying I'm uncomfortable with the guy himself. I'm uncomfortable with the picture. Last time I checked, most gay people don't go around showing you pictures of what they do in private. Likewise, goat.se guy is unlikely to do his special act where anyone is likely to see. Therefore it's not worth getting used to. However, gay people are likely to be gay in public. And by that I mean hold hands, kiss, whatever. People should get used to it. I didn't mean to imply that people should get comfy with what everyone does in private, like BDSM or whatever else. But, unless you think it's wrong, you should get used to what people do in public.


See, most people already do this, since we're good at compartmentalizing what we know about people. If I know that Adam in accounting is dating Steve in IT, but I also know that Adam runs marathons, is a baseball nut, and likes tinkering with robotics, I'm more likely to draw on those other sources than go straight to the "ewww, buttsex icky" place.

It's also worth asking to what degree a trait should be considered part of the cultures that identify primarily based on that trait. To use the classic example of "...some of my best friends are black", I can look at someone in front of me and ignore skin tone in favor of things they have more control over, while simultaneously disliking the combativeness and anti-intellectualism of self-identified "black culture". Does that then make me a racist? (If you say yes, are people who have a beef with contemporary american - AKA "white" - culture similarly racist?)

schmiggen wrote:I suppose people are afraid of seeing the opposite assumption used as an excuse to treat others badly. Assuming equality (before evidence) puts everyone on equal standing, which seems conducive to a peaceful/happy society. As someone put it in another thread recently: we'd like to reduce the number of type 2 errors with equality as a null hypothesis.

You can assume neither is true, but if you must interact with society, you eventually must act as if one or the other assumption were true, as there isn't really an in-between. (Either there is the possibility or not)


False dichotomy. There can be very real statistical differences, while simultaneously having a large amount of individual variation. Athletic ability, thanks to being easily quantified and recorded, is a textbook example of this. Which lets me simultaneously assess the person in front of me on their personal strengths, while not making the type 1 error of assuming that because society in aggregate is not 100% equal, that it's a problem of unequal opportunities rather than unequal inclination/ability.

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Re: Celebrating difference

Postby Mr. Mack » Mon Apr 14, 2008 10:41 am UTC

taarnling wrote:I think that when people say that everyone should celebrate difference, they mostly mean that people should appreciate it, find it important and to be a generally good thing.

You know, I always thought "Celebrate Diversity" was just some hollow, meaningless phrase thought up by some self-righteous pseudo-intellectual while watching David Lynch movies and sipping over-priced coffee with a foreign name.
But now that you've explained it, I've got to say that I agree 100%! I can't stand it when my gay friends say things like "That's my friend, he's great with satire." No, I want them to say things like, "That's one of my straight friends, and he's also a Scottish/Jewish/Cherokee, and I'm none of those things!" I mean, com'on, why on earth would I want to be appreciated for who I am instead of being appreciated for what groups I was born into? I'm sure that all of my friends prefer it when I am always fully aware of the ways in which they are different from myself and would hate it if I started treating them like individuals instead of members of groups of people that are different from the groups I was born into. After all, society will never be truly be united if we stop reminding ourselves that we're all fundamentally different, and if you're not actively excited about those differences, then you're nothing but pure old-fashioned hateful.
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Re: Celebrating difference

Postby Vaniver » Mon Apr 14, 2008 2:12 pm UTC

Dextrose wrote:Now, the claim I can see Charlton Heston making is that he doesn't care if people are gay. I don't believe that for a second. Because if he didn't care, he wouldn't be talking about it. And if he doesn't care, I suggest he - and anyone who agrees with him - belt it.
It could be that he cared; it could be that he didn't. He worked with homosexuals and I haven't heard reports of him being particularly impolite to them (but I haven't gone looking for stories of that sort).

Quixotess wrote:(I can't remember whose signature it was, so don't take it personally!)
I won't!

tetromino wrote:Sir, are you seriously suggesting that anyone who does not celebrate the difference between gay and straight has no right to voice their thoughts? That I have no right to talk about human sexuality if I do not celebrate your favorite version of it? With all due respect, that is one of the more frightening ideas I've seen voiced on this forum.
This is exactly why Heston made that speech.

Jjarro wrote:I'd be interested to know why he excluded the comment about religion. The full excerpt is:
The forum, in its cruelty, limits signatures to 255 characters. The full text of the quote is 301 characters (without a -Charlton Heston), and so I either had to pick something else or edit it.

Quixotess wrote:Given what he said about having "white pride" and how people are nice to Ice-T because he's black, I'm going to venture that he's not really interested in hearing about the other side.
My interpretation of that was that Heston was responding to what he thought was a double standard. He looked at Ice-T and thought "this is morally reprehensible; why the hell is this being published?" and then speculated that people were afraid to call Ice-T out on it because Ice-T was black- it's hard to call a black rapper morally bankrupt without inciting discussions of racism.

And that's why the method he used was to just read the lyrics. No polemics, no histrionics- just the facts, ma'am.

Quixotess wrote:Like I said before, this just looks like "I don't want to hear about it," which is not acceptance.
It depends on what we mean by acceptance. What's the cutoff between acceptance and non-acceptance? Obviously insulting someone based on their sexual orientation isn't accepting, but is saying "I really don't want to hear about what you do in your bedroom" not accepting?

Quixotess wrote:The sense I get from the quote is that Heston would say "Hey, why would you want a gay pride parade? That makes me uncomfortable; why do you feel the need to flaunt your sexuality?" That would be homophobia to me.
I think you're misrepresenting him. At his most impolite, he would probably say "tell me when so I know what day to stay home."

taarnling wrote:Why on earth would you be uncomfortable with that? Unless you're being silly that is?
Because he gets uncomfortable when other people try to foist their judgments on him, regardless of whether or not he agrees?

btilly wrote:Sometimes labels just don't fit well. I don't know of a single statement or position that he took from the 80s onwards that was not in perfect agreement with positions he took in the 60s. However when he said that all people should be treated equally, regardless of race, he was thought liberal. When he said that gays should not get preferential treatment because they are gay, he was thought conservative. When he said that we should have the right to bear arms, he was thought an arch-conservative. But those positions are all in perfect agreement with each other. And he never stopped holding his "liberal" positions even though he was supposedly a "conservative".
This quote comes to mind:
Thomas Sowell wrote:"If you have always believed that everyone should play by the same rules and be judged by the same standards, that would have gotten you labeled a radical 60 years ago, a liberal 30 years ago, and a racist today."


taarnling wrote:I think that when people say that everyone should celebrate difference, they mostly mean that people should appreciate it, find it important and to be a generally good thing.
My only responsibility to other people is to live and let live; I have no obligation to enjoy what they enjoy or commend them for enjoying it.
I mostly post over at LessWrong now.

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Re: Celebrating difference

Postby recurve boy » Mon Apr 14, 2008 2:29 pm UTC

Vaniver wrote:
taarnling wrote:I think that when people say that everyone should celebrate difference, they mostly mean that people should appreciate it, find it important and to be a generally good thing.
My only responsibility to other people is to live and let live; I have no obligation to enjoy what they enjoy or commend them for enjoying it.


Indeed. This thread should probably be in a humor section or something. The very idea that I'm not allowed to not care about something.

Quite frankly I'm more concerned if any gay people I meet will belay me for some rock climbing, or if they have a DS and Mario Kart.


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