I'm a victim, too!

Here’s one on why race and racial identities are fictions (tho with real effects). Not quite what you’re looking for I guess, but related…


Most extremists are scared. That’s why they’re extreme. This is even more true of those who are extremely conservative.

Scared people have trouble seeing the “other” as real, much less understanding, or empathizing with, them.

If you really want to get inside the heads of people who are saying these things, I strongly recommend Karen Armstrong’s book “The Battle for God.” She’s very well known for writing on the history of religion, and for her analytical approach to why one set of beliefs catch on and another does not. This particular book looks at the history of fundamentalism and radical fundamentalism in Judaism, Christianity and Islam.

It’s extremely illuminating, when you look at the dozen or so surges of fundamentalism across 600 years, give or take. The similarities and differences, in context, give you a whole other way to look at people who are saying such ridiculous things.

It also makes it easier to understand why so many people are able to believe fake news that is so very obviously fake – to most of us.


Like some kind of…Victim Vic-troll-a?

On other news, when did being a victim become a desirable condition? Who looks at someone who’s been paralyzed by a drunk driver and feels envy?


When you are the majority and in power, it gives justification to specific tactics towards continued oppression of the minority.


That’s been a thing forever. From the attention-seeking kid who gets their sibling in trouble so that the parents comfort them at the small, petty end, to the very concept of martyrdom as its ultimate culmination. People like having attention paid to them, and victimhood is an effective way of getting it.


Never, in my world.

Personally, I utterly hate feeling victimized, and even though misfortune and hardship happens far too often in my life for my tastes, I never see myself as a victim.

I’m still here, even through all the needless bullshit; that makes me a survivor.

(Think Gloria Gaynor, not Destiny’s Child.)


Nice video.



(quick realignment of gender perception)

I’d always seen you as female; fooled by the icon, I guess.


@Rickorussell2 You’ve been asleep, my little paragon of virtue. Lands like DC and Moscow are where the cool kids are doing the immoral acts these days. Use lots of lube.


Alas, this seems to be a fairly common phenomenon. Probably stems from the fact that at least from their point of view something has Changed. (In fact it usually has - it’s called progress.) And since everything was of course perfect when they were a child, this is bad, and obviously when other people do not agree with this they are picking on them. All of which demonstrates how important it is to pick your postulates carefully before going out on a logical limb. And unfortunately just one of the many problems you run into when a minority achieves sufficient success or at least visibility…Vital to keep going at that point, or it’s real easy to get squashed back down. :frowning:


Considering how much coal St. Nicholas produced, it had to go somewhere. Maybe Zwarte Piet was a plant operative, hence the sooty face.

What really sucks is how he gives all the best gifts to rich white kids.

Here are some alternatives:


We’re all victims of fascist rulers of Corporations; all of which who attempted to expand their powers throughout the worlds.


It’s gonna get worse too.


I grew up on Japanese and Thai food. One of the things that has happened several time is that I order something at a place that serves those cuisines, and the waitperson politely tries to steer me towards something else. Sometimes the manager will even come out to tell me that White people don’t like that dish. It isn’t offensive or anything, my wife just thinks it is funny. It usually leads to a nice conversation with the restaurant staff, when we discover that we have many places and experiences in common.

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It isn’t offensive or anything, my wife just thinks it is funny.

Yep. So let’s see, that’s White Privilege Example number, hmm, 97? 98? It’s a tough number to keep track of!


Taking the opportunity to provide a tangent: y’all heard this?

Four-part series on the intersection of food and race. Very well done.


White privilege is finding humor in what could be an awkward situation? It used to be called “being a good sport”, in the bad old days.


Another example might be the fact that some restaurants have different menus in different languages, with a some items appearing exclusively on one or the other menu.


Perhaps you have stronger standards for sanity than I. All I can say is it happens all the time, and I prefer not to assume that the people doing it are all broken.

OK, I thought about that* for a long time**.

On boundaries: we’re talking about a very specific type of boundary; we’re talking about word choices. We’re not talking about any other kind of boundary, and that’s important for the rest of what I’m going to say.

So, this is what I don’t know how to handle - the intersection of the boundaries of all Internet commentators is the null set. There is no formulation that is perfectly neutral and universally acceptable and yet conveys meaning in a political or social discussion; if it’s not a wide-open “anything goes” kind of trollfest, then you’re empowering a specific person or group’s boundaries by what words you allow, and by what speakers you permit to be mocked or shamed.

That’s well understood in the context of a site with written rules and guidelines like bOINGbOING; if your post gets prefiltered or eaten by the Luck Dragon, you go re-read the rules. Discourse makes the boundaries less static, though; the software is effectively written to encourage the development of vigilante cabals, who will flag posts out of existence before they get seen too much, and vigilantes rarely behave consistently.

And since that’s effectively unavoidable unless you want to have the previously mentioned trollfest site, we has it.

I could list all the things in this thread that are offensive to me, and chastise and moralize at length, and I’d get lots of “likes”, maybe even start a PC pile-on that would drive other commenters off the site. But I’d rather be more inclusive than that, and not try to inflict “correct” speech modes onto others, because I’d rather hear authentic voices than filter them through my preconceptions of what people ought to be saying.

Sorry about the rambling. But it’s kind of a can of worms, isn’t it?

* while plastering
** “And when we had thought about it long enough, we declared war on the Union.” --Chief Dan George as Lone Watie


Yes, having assumptions made about you on the basis of your race, and being able to just laugh it off, certainly is an example of white privilege.

I would think that with all of your oft-repeated connections to Asia, for example, you would know that having perniciously stereotypical assumptions made in the U.S. about say, a Chinese American person on the basis of her supposed food preferences, is precisely the opposite of a race-based privilege. And telling her she should be a “good sport” about it, instead of objecting to being stereotyped yet again, while not an example exactly of white privilege, is an example of an obnoxious common white tendency.