Liberals as Labelers

Ouch. Just realized a couple of disturbing things about “my” people.

I’ve been very liberal pretty much all of my life. Thinking about it right now, I don’t think you can be hypersensitive and not be liberal. You feel too much of what other people and other creatures feel to ever just casually dismiss them.

But I broke with the liberal fold a year or two back when I had a couple of disturbing discoveries forced on me:

1)  There are a certain number of liberals who are really not very nice people, (sometimes, it seems, especially to other liberals).

2)  Though I had unconsciously connected “liberal” and “rational” in my head, it turns out that’s not automatically the case. Liberal people can be crazy as shit-house rats, and mean about it besides.

But here’s something else I just realized:

Ze-liberals can’t do nuance. Everything has to be black and white. They can’t even calmly discuss a subject or issue. It’s their way or nothing.

(“ze-” is a construction I invented a few days ago. It means “that segment of the named population who exhibit the traits about which I’m speaking. It does NOT mean “all of them” but it might arguably mean a very healthy portion of them. You might talk about “ze-feminists” or “ze-Muslims” to examine a certain real trait which you believe is in, and is worth discussing in that population, without necessarily insisting every single person in that group displays the trait.)

So ze-liberals won’t DISCUSS something they passionately believe, they will present it with stony insistence of its absolute truth. Any attempt to disagree with them or explore the nuances of an idea are met with an almost screaming resistance.

Not only can there be no discussion, the person attempting to question or disagree becomes a MONSTER. If you disagree on something as minor as the definition of a word in the larger argument, if you question even the smallest detail of the main point, it’s because you HAAAATE women, or HAAAATE black people. You HAAAATE the poor Muslims, you HAAAATE the homeless, you HAAAATE people expressing their beautiful inner selves with their tattoos.

I think that “monster” thing is something of an attempt to … well, conjure a sort of automatic reflexive vindication into existence. If you believe a thing, and the only person who disagrees with you is a MONSTER, you pretty much have to be right, right? You’re the assaulted party, the downtrodden, the victim of conceptual rape.

But labeling people monsters doesn’t make them monsters. What it does is it shuts down all attempt at discussion. The result is that the only people willing to talk to you are the ones who already agree. You get positive feedback only, and you and your entire movement soar out into Crazy Land in pretty short order.

Case in point: ze-feminists. Try disagreeing with them about ANYTHING. Try explaining your position, or how you arrived there. Try pointing out that one or more of their positions is not quite supportable. If you’re a guy, you’re a mansplaining misogynist. If you’re a woman, you’re a self-loathing shill for The Patriarchy.  

I once got into a fairly nasty online interaction in which a blogger asserted that simply viewing the nude pictures released by some starlet’s ex-boyfriend constituted sexual assault (thinly-veiled code for “rape”) on her.

I said “Wait, there might be a crime here, an indecent act on the part of the boyfriend, but as far as other people viewing stuff already publicly released on the web, I don’t think you can equate that to sexual assault. Sure, she might be embarrassed as hell about it, but there’s no new crime being committed against her. You simply can’t sexually assault someone you never even met.”

Oh god, nobody wanted to hear THAT. Suddenly *I* was the MONSTER – the guy in favor of Rape Culture, of women being brutalized by horrible MEN.

And that was the annoying end of that entire discussion. If I’d attempted to explain … hell, once you get into these liberal pigeonholes, you can’t even apologize without sparking further vicious attacks. “LOOK, NOW HE’S TRYING TO WEASEL OUT OF WHAT HE SAID!! WELL, I’M NOT BUYING IT!! I’VE NEVER MET ANYONE SO HATEFUL!!”

Speaking of pigeonholes, there are a damned lot of labels in Liberal Land these days. Say the wrong thing and you’re suddenly a sexist, a racist, an ableist, an ageist, a genderist, on and on.

But here’s the thing about that. The person making that accusation is an “-ist” themselves and what they are is a LABELIST.

Labeling people with these automatic slurs is a way to shut down discussion, to shrink down and marginalize people by transforming them into ugly caricatures, pure symbols of hate.

Ze-liberal Labelists can’t deal with disagreement, nuance, or complexity. They can’t deal with the people who attempt to insert them into the discussion. They would rather dismiss them with a quick, snippy insult that boils down to “hateful monster.”

(This is not to say there aren’t ageists, ableists, etc. But nobody is that thing simply because they disagree with you, or want to more deeply explore the subject at hand.)

And again, if the other guy is a MONSTER, you must be in the right, right? There’s no other possibility. You don’t have to take a look at your position, you don’t have to consider holes in your arguments, you don’t have to THINK.

But the result is that you find it very easy to personally and directly hurt someone, to hatefully dismiss them, for what might otherwise be a simple verbal disagreement.

I see it so much. The “disturbing thing about ‘my’ people” referred to above is that ze-liberals seem to really and truly like hurting people. The labels are a smokescreen to hide that dark-hearted desire.

Sometimes it seems that labeling, and the magnitude of mean-spirited pleasure derived from it, is just about equal on both sides of the liberal-conservative-liberal divide. (Libtard! Lie-beral! Snowflake!!)

And for the same kinds of things.