Thursday, August 09, 2018

The Laboratories of The Left: University of Minnesota Considers Pronoun Rules

First, Peterson et al. are wrong to suggest that the main problem with such insanity is that it attempts to legally mandate nonstandard pronoun usage. That's an important problem, but it's secondary.
   The primary problem is that such usage presupposes falsehoods. By calling a male 'she', you're presupposing that he's female. And--anathema though it is to the left--truth matters. Denial of this point is the central idea of totalitarianism. Whether the government tries to force you to do so or not, there are good reasons to refuse. 
   But just a hairsbreadth behind is the second-most-important idea: infringement of freedom. 
   Not that I have any doubt that the court would strike down such insanity. We're obviously talking about compelled speech. long as we have a conservative court I'm confident that it would strike it down. I no longer trust the left on this issue, for obvious reasons. 
   Again, the cutting edge of the left is pretty up-front about its contempt for truth and autonomy. So there's nothing too surprising a sense.
   As I've said before, everyone should be at DEFCON 1 over this situation. The courts now have to tell universities that they need to stop restricting speech. We are, politically speaking, in the Upside Down. Oh and: we now have to look to the right for defense of free expression... Strange days indeed.


Blogger The Mystic said...

These times may merely be offering us some strong confirming evidence for an obvious and boring hypothesis which we perhaps forget on occasion: on either end of any political (or more broadly: ideological?) spectrum, rational inquirers have not allies, but only enemies of enemies. In that light, it's not too surprising that the right now comprises our defenders of free speech. We just forgot that hypothesis after spending so much time in crazy-right-land. Now, crazy-left-land seems like an entirely alien environment, even though it shouldn't.

And I hate to sound complacent, but man it sure seems more and more like you just gotta watch the pendulum swing. I'm thinkin' the Stoics had it nailed millennia ago. Don't get me wrong, though: keep callin' it like you see it. Sane voices need to be out there. But DEFCON 1? I dunno. What do we do at DEFCON 1? My life experiment in giving up outrage has been going so damn well, I can attest to the extreme benefits of not being at DEFCON X. At the same time, I don't want to not act if action must be taken...

but at the same time... what action is there to take? You, at least, get to lay some philosophizin' down on the chilluns. I just make computers do things.

Maybe DEFCON levels should entail some sort of time-based quota we should meet for engaging people in discussion over the subject matter at hand? I could probably pretty easily maintain a lack of outrage while meeting a quota like that.

I'm actually interested in what kinds of ideas you might have in this area.

12:08 AM  
Blogger Winston Smith said...

Y'know, I'm trying to do triage on my outrage. That's why I decided to just sit back with Trump and hope for passably good policies, and wait for Mueller to tell me what to think... During Bush 43 I burned the outrage candle at both ends...then cut it in two and lit up the extra ends, too...

But then I read that that thing about how spending time learning about politics has no practical payoff... and I realized HOW MUCH TIME I'd wasted to NO good effect whatsoever...

The PC stuff...well, I have a special interest in and obligation to academia...and it's already stuff that's right up my alley. And the pendulum never completely swings back, IMO. It goes way far to the left...but then never back as far right again as it was...then it swings even farther left next it's on a jerky trajectory toward crazy town...

I dunno.

7:27 PM  

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