...But of these sophisms and elenchs of merchandise I skill not...
Milton, Areopagitica

Except he had found the
standing sea-rock that even this last
Temptation breaks on; quieter than death but lovelier; peace
that quiets the desire even of praising it.

Jeffers, Meditation On Saviors



want to have some fun reading?

The thread in which this would have appeared closed to comments as I was writing it. This is the second time that's happened on that site. Pure co-incidence I know, but still.
It's the last, or would have been, of a long series of attempts, from lots of angles, to get at something that's not making it across the fiery chasm of polarized antagonism on this subject.
There's people I care about on both sides, and people I find disgusting too. I do it for the ones that matter to me, on both sides. It is decidedly not fun, most of the time. But there was some fun to be had here and there.
The causes of homophobic bigotry are easily seen for what they are - as an irrational sickness centered in the superstitious past. So all that's necessary is for us to stop that. In ourselves of course, and in others by force if necessary.
Easy. What's the problem?
Just people clinging to outdated harmful ignorance.
Why is there even discussion about this?
Hmm yeah, I don't know...let's see...
Is there a difference between silicone inserts and female breasts?
No, not in porn images of the naked chest. Not in sexual-object constructs.
There is of course a profound difference to a nursing child.
But we're way past that, we can provide babies with artificial breast milk. So equality. So done.
That there might be something similar, a similar distinction between natural and artificial, between something central to human nature and something more peripheral, operating in *some* of the people who are being blanket-condemned for irrational bigotry, that's not resolvable by simply calling them names...nah.
We know what's going on. Don't we?
Crowd: mutters.
The reason why the simple obvious question "So what's wrong with polygamous marriage, as long as we're opening things up marriage-wise?" went unanswered is it opens the discussion to where the line should be. Just one tiny example of the incoherence on display.
That I got accused of bigoted statements (not here though!) and when I said prove it, nothing happened, just gets ignored. Because fail. Yeah?
This same template is present in a few other areas of contemporary discord. Oh yes it is.
And it's being played by highly sophisticated operators.
My assertion, and I'm sticking to it.
There's nothing in what I've said here that places me anywhere within the black/white yes/no dichotomy.
That's the efforts of a distributed antagonism that's ultimately incoherent because of its multiple voices, who are in full coherent agreement that any non-dogmatic voice must be silenced. Pretty much the same reactive antagonism that's on the other, unrepresented here, side.
Fighting bigotry with bigotry. Who gets to silence and marginalize whom.
That silencing was what I went up against, where I'm still operating. If this was a site of primarily fundamentalist Christians I'd be getting the same shit with different colored bits in it.
Why even bother?
Because in my bizarro-world complacent shallow views toward these volatile polarized questions end up enabling things that aren't even under discussion. And yes, that's dangerous. Right now dangerous, in the real world.
What I'm rejecting has nothing to do with sexual diversity, and everything to do with thoughtless smug complacency and myopic knee-jerk reactions to the threats of complex reality.
The full thread is a great example of what my first comment called it:
Incoherent anti-gay argument.
Incoherent pro-gay argument.
And it’s very important you choose one or the other, because incoherence is all that will save us now.
Proponents of gay marriage:
“We were born this way and nothing can change that.”
Advocates for trans-gender acceptance:
“We were born into an exterior gender identity that surgical and cosmetic reconfiguration will adjust toward a truer image of our true selves.”
Anti-gay bigots: “People weaker than me have to do what I want them to. Even if it’s illogical and harmful.
God doesn’t like queers, it says so in the Bible.
It also says you should kill adulterous women with rocks, but we choose to ignore that part.”
On that thread of course only one side of the noise and confusion was allowed. The few other non-consensus voices that showed up were driven away pretty quickly.
Suggesting to people actively involved in an empowering delusion that they are in fact delusional is, as the thread proves mightily, enraging to the delusional.
The effort to position me as anti-gay failed.
The effort to position me as equally incoherent failed.
At the end there was simply the assertion that I had failed. Which contained some truth.
I should have stopped trying somewhere in the middle, having made myself as clear as I possibly could.
But I learned more than ten years ago on that same site, about something entirely different - the existence of telepathic ability in parrots - that continuing in the face of massive insult and scornful abuse is strengthening, and once the swelling goes down you can find yourself more able to get the job done than if you'd retreated from the hurt and scorn.
I'm way tougher now because of that. I don't recommend it particularly, but it is serving me well now.
The hurt and frustration subside, the conviction remains.
Even if it's not always as clear and coherent as I'd wish.
And to all those "parrot" scorners:
 Dudes. I proved it, beyond the shadow of any reasonable doubt.
Not in parrots. In me.
If you missed it, that's your tough shit.

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