If a tree falls in the woods doe it make a sound? There is a science that boarders on philosophy and religion that says a thing is neither black nor white until it is observed. If that is correct, then the answer is no.
More importantly, if observation creates reality, how much of the reality we see around us is created by the desire to see what we want to see? And why am I asking these questions? I had a conversation with an activist who directed quite a bit of micro-aggression at me. It has caused me to do quite a bit of thinking.
Not too terribly long ago in a BDSM support group for Afro-Americans*, I used the term Orientals. I had not gotten the memo that this was politically incorrect now. It makes sense though. Americans hail from America. Africans from Africa. Europeans from Europe. Australians from Australia. People from Asia probably shouldn’t be called anything but Asians.
.*The group mentioned in paragraph three was the “The Dark Lair”, lead by SirGuy of NYC, and this was a wonderful experience. Let me also give a shout out to SirGuy who is a hell of a great person. If you are near the NYC area, I strongly recommend attending Dark Lair workshops that are open to you. I definitely learned quite a bit and was made to feel quite comfortable even with my gaff. Their Fetlife page refers to the group as primarily for blacks and people of color. So I should have just said black. But for the last twenty years I have been trained to say Afro-American and now I carry a fear of saying the wrong thing. I am constantly trying so hard to not be judged as prejudice that is boarders on uncomfortable and so it makes me doubly upsetting therefore when I am accused of being insensitive. Maybe I should just stop trying, stop caring, and go with what i know is in my heart, assuming that if someone is going to hate me, they are going to no matter how hard I try or what I say.
If Martin Luther King were alive today, he might quite famously say: People should be judged by the content of their character and not by the color of their skin, or their gender, or their age, or their sexual orientation. I don’t like feeling that I might be treated as a prejudice idiot because I don’t know the language. I hate walking on egg shells and there are so many strewn about these days. Ageism, sexism, racism, the list goes on and on.
There is a concept that I feel is being lost and its this: Though I may disagree with you and possibility even be deeply offended by what you say, I will defend to the death your right to say it. At one time this might have included “hate speech” but no longer. We are creating categories of speech and thought that are not permitted and its dangerous territory because there are so many activists whose reality sees some speech and thought as too dangerous to be allowed. The important question becomes, who gets to decide this? If I think something is wrong, of course I think THAT needs to be shut down but if its my personal area of offensive activism, then I don’t want MY speech and thought to be limited.
My area of activism is consent and BDSM. The funny thing is, even in my own camp with my own kind, I will be at odds with some people that will disagree with my conclusions or think differently about what changes should be made. Even in your own camp there is always some discord. Some days I just want to move to Alaska with my slave, and spend my days working hard to sustain us, and my nights in ecstasy. Or maybe Canada. Nobody I know hates the Canadians. Oh wait, they are from the American continent, which makes them Americans too, right? Ow! My head hurts now.
If you don’t think ideas are dangerous, make a list of words ending in “ism”. Every “ism” has followers willing to bitterly fight and possibly die over words. ~ Xtac Quote
What people do reveals what they really think and feel. Even if we do not ignore the words and do not observe actions consciously, we still know this instinctively. This is why trust takes so long. ~Xtac Quote