A Passion For Cubbyholes A Blast From the Past from February 2015

*Sorry this is so late.  Yesterday I was out of sorts most of the day.  I thought I was coming down with a cold but apparently other than seasonal allergies that’s not so, so either I forgot to take my morning meds OR it was tiredness from the move.  At any rate, I slept late, and then decided to do a Blast From The Past post.  Only WordPress has decided to mess with my ability to search my own posts, by not showing dates.  Also, the only way is either searching by keyword (and I didnt have one already in mind) or to just endlessly page downward.  Which I swear took me longer than it would to write a new post.  WordPress, I’m glaring at you!
And now I’ll go have more coffee and go do real work.*

A Passion For Cubbyholes A Blast From the Past from February 2015

Yesterday I took a shashay down to Otherwhere Gazette, where someone in the comments of the posts was asking what the difference was between us and the SJWs, except they had a college degree and we didn’t.

The assumption dumbfounded me. Of my friends, I’m one of the least educated ones, as Kate and Amanda pack multiple graduate degrees, Dave Freer is a doctor (of fishology. Okay, it might be marine biology) and Tedd Roberts… well, a supervisor to doctoral students, besides being a doctor himself. As for the people involved with Sad Puppies, I have clue zero what Brad’s degree is. It doesn’t normally come up in conversation. I do know that Larry has an accounting degree for which he most certainly went to college (and paid his own way.)

Myself, as most of you know, I’m about a year short of a doctorate and now not likely to ever take it, because it was in languages, but over thirty years those have gone rusty and besides what good does it do me, now?

[Addendum: I just wanted to note I also have brilliant friends without college degrees and that I don’t consider a degree a stamp of intelligence.  Never have.  I took my degree in the hopes of a secure job.  Until the third year I didn’t learn anything I didn’t already know. (And then it was Swedish.)  Because the Author up there has a sense of humor, other than two brief stints teaching when Dan was unemployed, my degree has been of zero use for my actual work.  And I’ve learned more about areas like history that I never took in college than I ever did about the areas I did take in college.]

So the assumption that we didn’t have college degrees puzzled me. It reminded me of when a new girl about ten years younger than us, joined our writers’ group and assumed Rebecca Lickiss (physicist) and myself had no degrees. Why? Because we were married and had kids and chose to stay home with them. Therefore we clearly weren’t “educated.”

If you’re doing the sinal salute right now – fingers on either side of bridge of nose, head slightly bowed – yeah. I was too last night. It’s like they can’t conceive of people who have been “educated” choosing a different life path from them or even having different opinions.

I could say this was an effect of maleducation and their having illusions of intelligence. I.e. they let some college professors convince them that there is a “smart path” and a “stupid path” and the “smart path” for good little boys and girls with good grades obligates everyone to be a clone of whatever the professors envision.

I could, but we all went through the same maleducation and the same lectures which are mostly supposed to sell a point of view. And a lot of them are no dumber than we are. Yet we emerged… different. In fact, it’s almost a joke among my friends, and something that makes my kids’ blood run cold as they pursue their specialties, that few of us work at what we studied in college. And some of us have had intricately convoluted paths to get to doing what we actually enjoy.

So something different is at work here. It is in fact as though they thought that being “smart” obligated you to be an exact clone of them. As thought “smart and educated” were a category under which you get filed when you prove worthy of a college degree. (Which these days is not exactly hard. In my day, sonny! Also, get off my lawn.)

My son calls Wreck it Ralph the evilest movie ever made, because the moral of it at the end is “you should stay where you’re assigned.”

Yesterday I didn’t watch – but Dan was watching in the family room while I cooked – this movie where people got assigned a “role” and a station in adolescence. (That the authors thought there were only five and one was “thinker” was kind of funny. And sad. But mostly funny.)

I have no idea what the movie was, but what struck me was that as with Wreck it Ralph, the movie seemed to believe this putting of people in pigeon holes was a good thing.

It is a lust I’ve noticed among the people on the left, in the last oh, ten years. People should be assigned places according to their capacity judged by an “impartial” third party. That way they wouldn’t have the great unwashed crowding them about. Every person in his place and a place for everyone.

It’s all of a piece with their believing that the government must be brought into the most minute transactions and decisions affecting someone. There must be after all a government authority that decides I must have healthcare insurance, and I must have the package my ‘betters’ designed, providing for both birth control and abortion, even though I’d only need the first if I had a completely different body and I’d only have the second if I had a lobotomy. There must be a (benevolent) government dictating for whom one must bake wedding cakes. No decision too large and no decision too small when it comes to you not making it.

Because, you see, you’re just a widget, supposed to fit into a slot and do what you’re supposed to do, while all decisions, all rules control what you can do, so you’re no different than all those other widgets in the same slot.

This is of a piece with their inventing a multitude of genders (how many was it at last count, 41?) including “seeking” which means “don’t know.” It’s like they believe being a man or a woman and gay or straight means you have to absolutely conform to the stereotypes. If you don’t, you need a new word to describe what you are because every widget must be described so the right slot is found for him/her/shim/sher/blob. The seeking part always makes me think goes something like this “ZOMG, I’m not being attracted to anyone right now. I don’t know what I am. Seeking, seeking, seeking.” If you imagine that said in a little robot voice it’s just about perfect.

What amazes me is their assumption that not just them but EVERYONE would be happy in a world like that, where each human is put in a cubby and expected to live there forever.

I do them the justice of thinking their mistaken even about themselves. Particularly about themselves. A lot of the people who hold hardest to the idea that every little human comes stamped with a function (sort of like an egg) and an identification which determines his/her destiny are the sort of people who wake up on Tuesday morning and decide their real identity is dragon, something previously unsuspected in their sixty years of life. They’re the people who abandon a marriage of twenty years to “go find themselves” because apparently they somehow slipped behind the sofa cushions unnoticed. They’re the people whose resume goes from barista to physicist to astrologer and back again.

I think that’s why the lust for the ordered world. They feel out of control, bewildered by too many options, and lust for an ordered world where someone would psychically know where they belong and put them in the place where they’d be happy.

Two problems: first who can do that? We don’t have immortals among us, who can read the heart of men (yeah, and women and seeking, too) and tell exactly where you belong and where you’d be happy. Himself up there might be able to tell you that but He didn’t and gave you free will instead. Second what if there isn’t a place you’d be happy? Perhaps you weren’t built to be contented. Perhaps you’re someone who never quite fits in and pokes every away and towards the edges. Those have existed throughout history and there really is nothing wrong with being one of them.

In fact, the attempts by communist regimes to do this sort of thing were all more or less disastrous. Human beings, real human beings, aren’t easy to second guess or to “place” and tend to resist having their lives dictated to them.

So, beyond not making assumptions about the IQ or education of their opponents, I’d counsel our friends on the left (or anyone who thinks like that, though for some reason that’s mostly on the left) to possess their souls in patience and realize this utopia they seek is not only impossible, but it would be a nightmare for everyone, even the bureaucrats assigned to assigning people. (Can you imagine a more soul-eating job? For the corrupt it would be a chance at more corruption. For the conscientious trying to guess ‘right’ it would lead them to suicide.)

You have free will. Learn to use it. And kindly remove your boot off my neck and your governmental mandates off my life.

They will not bring me happiness, and I will ensure keeping them there and attempting to lord it over me doesn’t bring you any either.

Because I am not widget. I am a human being with distinct opinions, thoughts, and power of decision. You will never be able to understand the complexity and contradictions in a single human being, much less mandate what will make that person happy forever or what role they could fulfill for the rest of their lives.

And that’s a good thing.

 

187 responses to “A Passion For Cubbyholes A Blast From the Past from February 2015

  1. Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard

    An individual elsewhere made what I considered a “silly statement” in response to something I said and I said something to the effect that “an intelligent person” would have understood “that’s not what I was saying”.

    His response was basically “Oh, intelligent means agree with you”.

    Now, that can be a very “human way of thinking” but I’ve talked with plenty of people who I disagree with and still think are intelligent people.

    Sadly, this individual is part of a group that appears to actually believe “if you were truly intelligent, you would agree with us”. 😦

    • His response was basically “Oh, intelligent means agree with you”.

      Calling for the response: “No, intelligent means that you would understand me.”

      • Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard

        Very tempting. 😦

      • ironbear055

        Snerk.

      • BobtheRegisterredFool

        Yes, but that would accepting that agreement and understanding are not the same thing.

        • If they don’t agree with you, you just aren’t explaining it well enough.

          /sarc/

          • Or slowly and loudly enough… 😉

            • With some people, you can’t explain it slowly and loudly enough. Not even a clue x four upside their pointy little heads helps.

              • There’s a T-shirt I’ve seen, that says “I can explain it to you, but i can’t understand it for you.” The Signals catalog, IIRC.

                • For those who like to quote DWEMs:

                  “I have found you an argument; I am not obliged to find you an understanding.”
                  — Samuel Johnson, Boswell’s “Life of Johnson”

                  AKA, this is a problem predating the internet.

              • Somehow I missed that “clue x four”. That is EXCELLENT.

              • Have you tried shaking them vigorously while re-explaining? If you shake them vigorously enough, the problem occasionally disappears. 😀

              • In my experience there’s not enough clue x four at all of Home Depot. And unfortunately they stopped making pipes out of lead….

                • ironbear055

                  Snerk. One of my favorite observations in mods and admin forum at Rendo was, “*looking around at the rest of the bloviating Staff* Y’know? A Clue Fairy could die of exhaustion in this place and not accomplish jack sh*t.”

                  Guaranteed to generally start a forum brawl that was entertaining as all hell. (For me, at least.)

                • They need to be made of rubber, so that you get a drumroll effect when you hit them against something.

  2. We don’t have immortals among us, who can read the heart of men (yeah, and women and seeking, too) and tell exactly where you belong and where you’d be happy.

    Yes we do! Just consult the Pachydermic Personnel Predictor!

  3. ironbear055

    I’ve spent my entire life trying to recover from my education.

    • I think most of us have. Fortunately mine was so over the top it induced high rolling even in the young and relatively innocent Sarah.

      • Reality Observer

        With the “morning” coffee just started (my allergies had me up in the middle of the night, so I slept most of the morning away).

        Image of a younger Sarah rolling up and down the aisles – while floating five feet in the air.

      • ironbear055

        *grin* I don’t think I was ever innocent, even when I was young.

        I was lucky on the whole, going through Catholic schools and High School during the ’60s and ’70s. I learned to read phonetically, learned to enjoy reading omnivorously and researching, got most of a decent classical education even if there was a bit of embedded disinformation to get rid of later, and most importantly: they taught me how to think and to evaluate information for accuracy.

        All the tools that I really needed to resist cultural programming later on in life.

        After that, it was just a matter of reading and studying a lot and learning to separate the wheat from the intellectual and cultural chaff, and weighing everything against the school of hard knocks.

        Helps that I’ve always been an obstinate cuss, even as a kid. My parents and teachers brought me up with a rock solid ego, and I have generally had zero problems with once I’ve evaluated things and come to conclusions, deciding that if everyone else disagrees with me: it’s them that’s wrong, not me.

      • ironbear055

        Oh, by the way:

        “Fortunately mine was so over the top it induced high rolling even in the young and relatively innocent Sarah.” – ATH

        Uh… “high rolling”?

        Elaborate, please?

      • I bought some things, was highly doubtful of others but for a long time assumed I had to be wrong and just didn’t understand all the intricacies because pretty much everybody seemed to agree with them. Because I just couldn’t be that much smarter than everybody else.

        I suppose that is the way lots of it stays afloat, those ones who kind of notice the emperor is naked just assume they are the ones seeing things because everybody else seems to be seeing the clothes. But since they are then too embarrassed to say anything they never find out that the ones not seeing the clothes may be the majority, and that there actually are no clothes.

        I don’t know about American culture, but in Finnish one anything which can be seen as “putting on airs” is still very much frowned upon so going against the consensus, both the “everybody knows” things and more so what some experts say, can be more than just a little painful socially.

        • There was a time in my youth when I had a paper route and every Saturday went downtown to pay for my papers that last week. Each time I made that trip the bus let me out in front of the town’s largest bank, an imposing edifice with an ornate, somewhat baroque pillar standing 10, 12 feet high in front of the bank, sporting a highly imposing clock.

          Each week I looked at that clock, looked at my wrist and reset my watch.

          One day, dismounting at the bus stop I looked at that clock, looked at my watch and said: Why should I take their word for what time it is? Screw them.”

          Forever afterward I strove mightily, resisting the urge to go in that bank and complain that their clock tower was slow.

          Nowadays, of course, my cellphone and computer are aligned t the master time data base and any attempt at deviation would void my warranty. Doesn’t mean I accept their word for the correct time, just that I accept there’s nothing to be gained by arguing with them.

  4. I have two Master’s Degrees, so that is supposed to make me a SJW? You can take your SJW and stick it ….wherever. By my observation Degrees do not necessarily indicate intelligence or Common sense.

      • Actually advanced degrees in other than STEM fields are indicators of a likely delusional weltanschauung.

        • Meh. Languages have some rigor. That part of the degree was okay.

          • Well language study still finds dictionaries useful. SJWs throw out Webster’s and make new definitions up on the fly.

            • Randy Wilde

              And why shouldn’t they? Daniel Webster is just an old dead white man.

            • Well, language is a tool of the patriarchy or something, which is why they constantly make new words. They seem to think that if they can control the language used it will allow them to frame discussion and control how people think.

              • Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard

                Quote From Through The Looking Glass

                ‘And only one for birthday presents, you know. There’s glory for you!’

                ‘I don’t know what you mean by “glory,”‘ Alice said.

                Humpty Dumpty smiled contemptuously. ‘Of course you don’t—till I tell you. I meant “there’s a nice knock-down argument for you!”‘

                ‘But “glory” doesn’t mean “a nice knock-down argument,”‘ Alice objected.

                ‘When I use a word,’ Humpty Dumpty said in rather a scornful tone, ‘it means just what I choose it to mean—neither more nor less.’

                ‘The question is,’ said Alice, ‘whether you can make words mean so many different things.’

                ‘The question is,’ said Humpty Dumpty, ‘which is to be master—that’s all.’

                End Quote

              • The other thing is that they don’t dare fix real problems or they might find themselves out of a job. No free righteous indignation. Why, they might have to start doing quotidian goodness instead of bullying to win their moral egoboo, and that would take time, effort, and money.

              • Mmmmm… You’d be surprised how useful it can be to ensure no one can have a simple convo about an issue in dispute because the words aren’t there.

                Anthropogenic global warming vs. climate change. Destructive fetal stem cell vs. adult stem cell research. And so on.

                Lewis’ Studies in Words is a good place to start.

              • It isn’t the making up of new words that’s the major problem, it’s the constant, ongoing redefinition of perfectly good existing words to make them serve the delusional leftist dogma that is the worst. There are times when you literally can’t talk to the leftists; they don’t understand the meaning of normal English words.

                • Normal English words, such as the one that previously meant “lighthearted and carefree”?

                  Kids today look at a movie listing for The Gay Divorcee and think it is about same-sex marriage.

                  • No no no! After twenty years of marriage she suddenly realized she wasn’t happy. She was gay.

                    Roget was a dangerous man.

              • BobtheRegisterredFool

                Some of what they explicitly teach is really magical thinking. They attach a word to certain behaviors, then propose to ban the word and thereby remove the behaviors.

                Religion being one example. They attribute behaviors they disapprove of, and only behavior they disapprove of, to religion, in particular Christian religion. Supposing that Christianity is the sum total of religion, they assume that restricting the open expression of Christian religion will eliminate the behaviors they dislike.* **

                It is like drawing a bridge on a map in order to cross a river. Their defenses are like noting that our engineering culture uses plans and drawings as part of bridge building, and being unable to understand that there is even a rest of the process.

                *Given that this a communal ritual based on magical thinking, one can reasonably consider this a religious practice.

                **The behaviors they dislike? Arguably many of them are unchanging human nature.

                • I have often said that the principle of “separation of church and state” as they tenuously understand it and firmly insist upon would seem to dictate that no leftist may be involved in politics, since their “political” views are so obviously religious in nature.

            • That fly is a fruit (of the plant type, not the homo/gay/lez/whatever) fly, much too small to write much of a description on.

        • It also depends on who’s doing the teaching, and how close the program is to the real world.

  5. Randy Wilde

    Cubbyholes…

    aka “from each according to his abilities”?

  6. Yup. Although it was pretty apparent from High School that I’d end up in more of a thinking field than a doing field (i.e. book related instead of waiting tables and becoming a master sommolier or something). So I got a BA and trotted off to get an associates in aircraft repair while flying full time. And then went back into grad school and started writing mil-sci-fi. Because I fit round and square holes so well.

    As for the other finding yourself silliness, well, at this moment in time (Friday after serving as a target yesterday). Sex: start by introducing yourself nicely and inviting me to coffee, then we’ll see. Gender: woman, same as the plumbing. Pronoun:she/die/ella/ Sehr Geeherte Doktorin Lehrerin Boykin. Species: at the moment, Cape Buffalo, so do NOT tick me off!

    • Species: at the moment, Cape Buffalo, so do NOT tick me off!

      I thought you were a kitty cat….

      • You mean you haven’t heard of someone being species-fluid? Just because someone was a cat yesterday doesn’t mean that they’re going to be a cat everyday. Sometimes one just does not feel especially feline.

      • A Mutual of Omaha Wild Kingdom Moment:

        MARLON PERKINS: While Jim inseminates the Cape Buffalo…
        JIM (Off): IT’S NOT A COW! AAAGH!
        MARLON PERKINS: I’d like to take a moment to talk to you about Mutual of Omaha Life Insurance…
        JIM (Off): HELP MEEEEE! AIEEEEEE!
        MARLON PERKINS: You see, Mutual of Omaha won’t insure Jim, so that means more coverage is available for you…

    • ironbear055

      Snort. I’ll have you know that while sex is biological, gender, pronouns, race, and even species are social constructs and are very fluid and open to argumentation. I know, for I have argued them successfully. 🙂

      I am a documented male self-identified African-American Woman, and a Knight of Cthulhu.

      I arrived at that realization and at this existential state and explain my journey there in this way:

      It began with a form at the Bridge in Dallas, Texas that had spaces for various items, which I proceeded to fill in… whereon my entries in certain blanks were, ah… questioned. At length.

      I responded thusly:

      All humans, the science of paleoanthropology informs us, with the exception of our Denisovan and Neanderthal genes, originated in Africa and migrated out to populate the world, including, eventually, North America.

      I live in the United States where my ancestors from distant Africa moved long before I was born.

      Sex is binary. Gender is a social construct.

      Our gender, we are reliably informed by the vast intellects in academic gender studies, is largely self determined and formed by our cultural environment.

      Therefore, I self identify as an African-American woman, which I why I filled that in in the race and gender spaces on your form.

      Yes, I do realize that I am genetically male, 6’1″ with Caucasian appearance, and have a van dyke and a handlebar mustache. My mother was in the circus. What are you? Racist? And Sexist? I’ll have you know that carny is a perfectly acceptable profession for a woman with a beard. Are you trying to imply something about my mother?

      Do I need to talk to your supervisor? Or perhaps to someone in the ACLU? And in the media? I think I do.

      Needless to say, somewhere in the Great Electronic Government Filing Cabinet, there is a lone form with Ironbear’s civilian name upon it where he is listed as Race: African-American and Gender: Female.

      Likewise, from a different incident, there is in the vast electronic bureaucracy that is the records system of Parkland Hospital in Dallas, a Radiology Lab form that lists Ironbear’s religion as “Knights of Cthulhu” because they didn’t have “Atheist” nor “Agnostic” in their electronic form’s pulldown, and I wouldn’t let them just write in “other” by the time they got done annoying me.

      The look on the poor nurse’s face when I had to explain what a Cthulhu was, was priceless. She called a nursing supervisor at that point. The Supervisor, who was one of those classic large, middle aged, very matronly, no nonsense, and very black women, the type that can make your typical Gunnery Sergeant take off his hat and leave his muddy shoes on the stoop and say “Ma’am?” just with a look, eyed me carefully, looked at her, listened to the whole overwrought spiel from the now frustrated nursing aide, then asked me what was going on…

      I nodded respectfully to her, shrugged, and politely said, “Ma’am, I am an atheist. I am not a Christian, a Buddhist, a Hindu, a Moslem, a Gnostic, a Neo-pagan, nor any of the remaining options inclusive of Other. I will accept agnostic as an alternative. I will even accept Taoist, which is also not on your electronic form, apparently. But I am not an ‘other’. If, as there seems to be no option in the pulldown for what I am, then with all due respect, I will insist upon a write in for what I choose to self-identify as as an alternative. I will not be ‘othered’, as I consider ‘other’ to be mildly insulting. And I am prepared to stay here in this seat and politely stare down the young lady here until either I get my way, the lab closes at the end of the business day, the sun burns out, or you have security come and escort me off of the premises. At which point, ma’am, I’ll return and make another appointment for my MRI and we can repeat this ad infinitum. I have no life, nothing else to do right now, and I am very patient.”

      And the Nursing Supervisor gave me a very long look as if judging my resolve, or possibly my levels of sanity, sighed heavily, planted both fists upon her ample hips, and then eyed the nursing assistant and said, “Honey, I don’t care if he wants to put Jedi as his religion. If it’s not in the pulldown, just type it into the box and move along. And then make him check his lightsabre before he goes into the MRI.”

      The nursing assistant glared, bit out, “How do you spell that, sir?” and went clakety-clack.

      She then asked me what my gender was…

      I smiled.

      So now the Ironbear is a bearded African-American woman, descended from carnies, who is also a Herald of the Outer Gods. It says so on his forms.

      I am also formerly registered to vote in at least one county as a Rosicrucian, and another as a Neopythagorean, and yet another as a Kibologist, but those are other stories. A United States Census Bureau form once listed me as a Dialetheist, and a previous one as a Zenarchist. Both of those resulted in interesting and entertaining discussions with the Census takers. I consider myself a Trivialist, but just the right opportunity for immortalizing that fact by embedding it within a government database has not yet arisen. My Texas driver’s license once said that I was a Discordian before it expired.

      The Ironbear is obviously polytheistic and, while emphatically male, is a being of ambiguous gender. But he is decidedly African-American, and has evolutionary evidence on his side to prove it.

      And a form.

      • Randy Wilde

        A United States Census Bureau form once listed me as a Dialetheist

        I think that form is stored in Room 101 in the Census building.

        (fine, I admit it, I had to look up dialetheism)

      • Randy Wilde

        My Texas driver’s license once said that I was a Discordian before it expired.

        What did it say after it expired?

        • “What did it say after it expired?”

          Help! Help! Save me from the round file! 🙂

          I was living in Arkansas at the time, and had an Arkansas driver’s license shortly after that, so I’m not really sure. But it really was probably some variant of “Help, save me from the trash can!”

          I think I listed “Taoist” in the blank on the Arkansas form, IIRC.

          “I think that form is stored in Room 101 in the Census building.
          (fine, I admit it, I had to look up dialetheism)”

          *grin* So did I, once. Hazard of an active curiosity and a wide ranging reading habit. My mind is a swamp of useless trivia about all sorts of bizarre crap.

          The Census Bureau… ah… *shakes head* I hate the Census. I habitually round file the census forms as soon as they arrive in the mail, which invariably leads to a census taker or two eventually showing up on my doorstep to ask me questions and take down my vitals. Religion is an optional question, but in my experience, in Texas at least they usually ask while letting you know the answer is optional.

          I don’t mind. I’ll answer any question asked, and lie through my teeth entertainingly if I think the answer falls into the category of “None of your f*cking business, pal.” I can almost always pull something bizarre out of my *ss once every ten years just to screw with their heads and make them blink and go, “Huh? Whut?”

          I see monkey wrenching as something to be done as a matter of course. Annoying me with forms is hazardous. I’m likely to place tongue firmly in cheek and then there’s no telling what the hell I’ll put in the blanks, just to screw with the bureaucracy.

          • Interesting, I roundfile census forms, yet have never had a census taker show up. If one did I would run them off and tell them it is none of their business, as I helpfully did once for a friend, when I stopped by his house and he was being hassled by the second or third census taker to show up at his house that week.

            • Really? I always have them show up. They must like me or something.

              I find them amusing. *grin*

              • sabrinachase

                It might be mutual 😀 “Okay, Joe, you have been doing a superb job this year. I’m going to let you visit IronBear!”
                “Really, boss? Yaaayyy!” (and everyone waits with bated breath for Joe to come back and recount the next installment in the saga….)

        • It expired because he shot it. I don’t blame him; hell, his driver’s license was talking. After that, it didn’t say much of anything at all.

    • I gots Tick Birds for sale or rent,, which will take ticks off you.

  7. I only have a bachelor’s degree, and a couple courses plus a thesis shy of a masters. OTOH, it’s in physics. 😉

    Still, this “we’re more educated than you” was getting old when I wrote the following blog post about it a couple of years ago:

    http://thewriterinblack.blogspot.com/2014/12/not-stupid.html

    Many years ago I got into a debate with someone about a point of political philosophy. It wasn’t an argument about “fact” but values and philosophy. I was told, in no uncertain terms that I needed to “go back to school, a public school” (previously that person and I had butted heads over the quality, or lack thereof, in public education). My response: “Thank you for admitting that public schools serve not for the teaching of skills but as centers of political indoctrination.”

    She didn’t like that.

    • Well, I tend to view public school as “free” day care… at least, after repeating the third grade nine times, I got the idea they weren’t actually about teaching anything.

      Dropped out of high school when I turned 18 (never had anyone ask about it, since graduation is pretty much guaranteed with attendance), and spent one very interesting semester in college, with a free police escort off campus. It seemed college wasn’t much about teaching either…

    • Unfortunately, even Physics is not immune from the pretentious. Once, when I was telling a friend about an odd book I had read (called The Iron Sun) where the author said he wanted to build black holes (to use the wormholes they would create), I had just gotten to telling him how the guy figured that we could use Bussard Ramjets so they could get up to 10% C, when this dude sitting a couple of tables away piped up about how that speed was impossible and that he was “a third year grad student in Physics”, as if that ended the argument (it did end the argument, but only because his claim that the reason this was impossible was because “the inner K-shell electron of the Uranium atom doesn’t have that much potential energy” positively stumped me as to how that was relevant).

      • I think the ramjets are indeed impossible. The problem is that they do not factor in the effects of all the hydrogen you sweep up hitting the ship, which would prevent their working as well as necessary.

        • I could have argued that. It was the combination of his lack of understanding basic rocket mechanics shown in the reason which he gave for it being impossible, combined with his certainty in his lofty authority that left me speechless.

  8. I knew from the 11th Grade on that I was going to be a mathematician. I came to this conclusion after researching “Chaos Theory”, which I did because I read “Jurassic Park” for English class. The *only* thing that has made me question this decision was Differential Equations, but more because it was “Here’s how to solve first-order linear differential equations, now let’s give you a lot of story problems to apply these things over and over and over again” than it was because of mathematical issues. I yearned, very badly, for more than just the basic linear first-order stuff!

    Having said that, the idea of being stuck in one place disturbs me. One factor that caused me to be a bit less interested in becoming a professor was the idea of seeking “tenure”. Why would I want to secure a position in college, where I would be expected to stay for the rest of my professional life?

    Despite “knowing my place” from an early age, the idea of “having a place” is completely foreign to me.

    While I have never seen “Wreck it Ralph”, a children’s book (and song, for that matter!) that deeply disturbs me, is called “Marsupial Sue”, about a kangaroo that gets migraines jumping up and down, so she goes and tries to find her true self, and ultimately finds it with wallabies; from there on out, she decides she should have accepted her kangaroo-ness from the outset. Why, oh why, do we want to teach little kids that exploring your options is out of place and somehow wrong?

    (Also, I have come to realize I’m *really* alien: I use Dvorak, and would like to experiment with other potential keyboard designs; I *want* to program in Common Lisp and Forth; I *want* to build a ternary-logic computer; I like the command line over graphical interfaces, and have ever since MS-DOS days (I even outlined a design for a Linux-ish system before I learned of Linux); I would like to learn to play the “Janko” piano keyboard; and in general, if there’s one way to do something, I’d like to push the boundaries, to see if there might not be a slightly better way…)

    • > Dvorak

      It doesn’t matter how you rearrange the keys, the keyboard is still right handed…

      • Actually, there are also “right-handed” and “left-handed” Dvorak keyboard layouts, but those variations are specifically for people who have lost a hand.

        Dvorak did his work for the military, and when someone who lost his hand in battle asked for something designed for one-hand-only typing, Dvorak developed the two variations.

    • Because there is a finite amount of time? Exploring your options can result in your, in fact, not having any. Especially if you explore options that are not, in fact, options,

      While the people who want to slate you into roles are real, I see rather more of the people who think their options are infinite, and any restrictions on them are the result of other people’s failings. I particularly remember an OWS protester who whined about not getting a good job in her field of study because, “Aren’t you supposed to follow your dreams?” — apparently not realizing that if her dream was a good job, she should have followed it.

      Like “Be yourself”, “Explore your options” is situation dependent.

      • Like “Be yourself”, “Explore your options” is situation dependent.

        Heh. I may be quoting Lily Tomlin here:

        All my life I wanted to be somebody. I realize now that I should have been more specific.

      • “Dear, if your dream decided to jump off a bridge, would you do it too?” Sometimes you just have to unreason at their level…

      • Oh, I fully understand that there are only limited hours in a day, and that you could do only so much experimentation. I have a *lot* of experimentation that’s on the back burner due to this. But the thing that drove me nuts about “Marsupial Sue” was how ridiculous it was for her to even *consider* her options. That is the thing that rubbed me the wrong way.

        Although, now that you mention “Aren’t you supposed to follow your dreams?”, it seems that no one ever seems to add “and make sure your dream has at least some basis in reality”. If there are no good jobs in your chosen field of study, or if there are, but they are very rare, with many people chasing it, it would be a good idea find another field of study to pursue…of course, that would mean “Grievance Studies” would disappear altogether, and we can’t have that!

        The other thought that just popped into my head when you mentioned “Aren’t you supposed to follow your dreams?” was “what is someone who has no dreams supposed to do?” The modern day answer seems to be “Take as many classes is college you can, taking 7 to get your bachelors and collect gobs of debt in the process, and hope that your ‘dream’ isn’t to become a mechanic, a machinist, a carpenter, an electrician, a plumber, a trucker, or some other field that just isn’t touched on in college…”

  9. With all due respect to our kind host, I think I have to disagree about Wreck-It Ralph and Divergent, both.

    At the pivotal moment in Wreck-It Ralph, the eponymous character (a sentient computer program) accepts his programming as a villain and his primary function as a one-man demolition crew while attempting to sacrificing his own existence to save another character. Only the intervention of the character he’s trying to save averts permanent character death. True villains don’t go in for self-sacrifice. He’s reciting the ‘Bad Guy Affirmation’ as he plummets to his death, but clearly, he’s not actually a Bad Guy anymore. He’s grown beyond his programming, in part because he’s witnessed firsthand the havoc wrought by another program which really did re-invent itself, and which nearly got a number of other programs destroyed.

    I think the message of the movie is not ‘accept your assigned role’ but ‘accept yourself’ and ‘anyone can be a hero’. Without any modification ‘accept yourself’ is a bad moral, to be sure. We should not, for the sake of ‘accepting ourselves’ overlook or rationalize our flaws and vices. If Ralph had only done this, while still being a bully to the programs around him, the story would not have merited the telling. But, since he does learn to care about the fate of other programs and does become a hero, it is one of those Disney movies I categorize as almost good enough to be a Pixar film.

    Having read the book and seen the movie a number of times, I can safely say that while the society depicted in ‘Divergent’ adheres to the idea that ‘You can be one of five things’, the author begins poking holes in that ideology almost immediately. The society itself, as we learn in the next movie, is a social experiment. The book and movie both show that society in the process of falling apart. I haven’t read Insurgent yet, though my wife tells me that the book and the movie are noticeably different. I think themes are probably the same, but a novel and a film of the same story sometimes have to tell it in different ways. Most of the main characters in Divergent have lived with more than one faction or are forced by circumstances to transcend their assigned roles in society. Tris and Four are both actually Divergent, while her brother Caleb transfers from Abnegation to Erudite before abandoning it also and picking up a rifle to protect his sister. He is functionally if not mentally Divergent.

  10. As for indoctrination… I was briefly (two semesters) in the Honors Program at my college. One required course was titled “Angles of Vision”. It was team taught by two very left wing professors. The purpose of the course was to get us to recognize that everything we were exposed to, books, TV, movies, magazines etc. had an agenda being pushed. The agenda might be explicit or might be extremely subtle but be sure that it is there. Great concept for a college course. Unfortunately it devolved into do not be fooled by corporate shills and conservative whackos. The professors were totally blind to progressive agendas. Fish-water, you know the drill.

    I dropped the program when I realized two things.
    1. It was aimed at and taught by liberal arts types. Not engineering students.
    2. You would be graded badly if your report for a seminar was to explain why the left wing loonie ‘Expert’ we had listened to had very flawed view of reality.

    • ironbear055

      Huh.

      “Great concept for a college course. Unfortunately it devolved into do not be fooled by corporate shills and conservative whackos. The professors were totally blind to progressive agendas. Fish-water, you know the drill.” – oldgriz

      I’ve often wondered if maybe I didn’t doge a bullet just by starting college in when nearly in my mid twenties (at 23-24), rather than straight out of high school. By the time I did college and tech school, I’d already left home at 17, worked my way across several states, traveled abroad, boat and beach bummed a bit, been exposed to real world violence… and in general, had just been exposed to and worked over by The Dreaded Real World before being exposed to the indoctrination mill that is university life. So I had lots of stuff to weigh what I was being fed by teachers against and step back and say, “Hey, wait a minnit here: this sounds good, but you try applying it in real life and it don’t work.”

      I also did community college which may have made a difference. I noticed that in my courses, I wasn’t the only (somewhat) older student working their way through classes after having done school of hard knocks before going in.

      • I started college 15 years after high school. A bit of real life does help resist the group think.

      • A familiarity with history also helps.

        • Yeah… in my case, in all honesty, it was probably an early familiarity with gun rights politics that helped insulate me from Leftism as much as anything else.

          I started reading Guns Magazine, Shooting Times, American Rifleman, and Guns & Ammo at an early age. By seventeen, after years of “From the Capitol” in G&A, I was pretty thoroughly aware that Democrats = Leftist = Communist and that these and their politicians were the people who wanted to ban guns, which were among the tools of civilization that I was fairly enamored of. I was pretty solidly a libertarian by that age, even if I didn’t have a name for the philosophy yet.

          So by the time I was in my early to mid twenties, someone telling me that they were a Leftist or a Democrat meant they were telling me that if they personally weren’t a gun banner, then they supported people and policies that were.

          It wasn’t much of a jump from there to understanding that regardless of whatever a Democrat or Leftist (but I redundancy) said they believed in, in practice they were Puritan totalitarians. Seeing actual socialist governments and societies in practice down south of the border and in the lower Caribbean just reinforced that I wanted no part of anything or anyone to do with it.

          (There’s a spot in the swamps in the backwoods of my mind where Leftist and the aftermath of a Sendero Luminoso political reeducation effort are synonyms. That’s a pretty effective insulation all on its own.)

          • Anonymous Coward

            Yup. I was slightly right of center in my 20s. Then I bought my first gun and for the first time ACTUALLY HEARD what the Left was saying about me (as a gun owner) and realized it was NOT just wordplay. Sensitized me as to how often they demonized devout Christians & Jews, homeschoolers, farmers, soldiers, blue collar workers, anyone not living in the coasts, heck … just about anyone displaying even a smidgen of leave-me-the-hell-alone attitude. They PUSHED me to the Right.

            Off topic : there sure seem to be a lot of North Texas ATH commenters..

            • Still off topic: Between the Metroplex being big, Texas being Texas, and an influx over the past three-four years, northern Texas does seem to be heavily represented. That or, also likely, Texas residents are more likely to say we’re in Texas, as opposed to someone who is in MA, eastern OR, or CT or CA and who doesn’t want to risk getting caught and having job/family/other trouble.

              • That’s probably it. I’m happy to be from east Tennessee (and originally from central Pennsylvania), but when I was living in Maryland between Baltimore and Washington I didn’t mention it unless asked directly.

              • Plus, Texas just has too danged many people in it. 😉

                • Visit the TransPecos some summer afternoon. Get off I-10 and you’ll think you’re in an EOTWAWKI film or novel.

                  • Oh, no sh*t, TXRed. Parts of West Texas around San Angelo and between Dallas and Rowena, too.

                    Your population density figures drop drastically once you get far enough west out of DFW, until you hit the San Angelo metroplex again. South Texas, too, although that may just because the King Ranch owns so much of the southern Gulf Coast, and the Big Thicket is a mesquite desert.

              • “That or, also likely, Texas residents are more likely to say we’re in Texas, as opposed to someone who is in MA, eastern OR, or CT or CA and who doesn’t want to risk getting caught and having job/family/other trouble.”

                Where as Texicans are less likely to give a crap? I can buy that for a dollar.

    • The purpose of the course was to get us to recognize that everything we were exposed to … had an agenda being pushed.

      Everything except that course, no doubt.

  11. I love Wreck it Ralph! I saw an entirely different moral.
    You are not defined by your job.
    Ralph was stuck in the roll of evil thug. His coworkers rejected him because they only saw his job title and assumed he was an evil troll. He came to terms with his job once he forced the world to see HIM not the round hole he was mashed into.

    • I say this as an ex blue collar big guy. Now I’m a big engineer guy. Of course, after meeting Larry I have redefined myself as a sort of big guy. 😉

    • That’s the way I see it, too. Ralph didn’t mind being the villain, that was an OK gig. What he couldn’t stand was being the goat. And that changed by the end. He was no longer out in the cold, he was welcome and accepted, a hero to a little girl.

      BTW, once my son pointed out that Felix was voiced by the same actor who plays Wander in Wander over Yonder, I can’t hear him any other way. 😉

    • If I had to summarize Ralph’s character arc in one word, I would say ‘redemption’. I think he is objectively a bad person at the beginning of the story and that Penelope’s remark ‘You really are a bad guy’ is a statement of fact. He befriends her, then betrays her, and finally bullies her by destroying the cart all for the sake of recovering of a stolen medal. He might have been trying to help save her life, but he’s also still chasing the medal. But then he repents, makes restitution by having the cart fixed, and shows genuine remorse when he presents the rebuild cart to Penelope. He becomes a hero, but not before he realizes he’s been a villain.

      • His character shows growth, as does Felix.

        Hmmm… Character growth. Does that make it Literature?

        • No. Any story worth telling has character growth.

          • The Other Sean

            Does this mean most sitcoms aren’t stories worth telling? I suppose I could buy that. 🙂

          • Not sure that’s so. Peter Jackson’s LOTRvwould not have been uh a hot mess if he hadn’t decided to shoehorn Character Growth into places where it was not only not needed but actually undermined the narrative structure.

            Might be true of the modern novel, but only if the modern novel is a lot smaller sort of thing than I’d imagined.

            • Free-range Oyster

              The problem there is not character growth. Tolkien’s novel included at least minor development arcs for every significant character that I recall. Some of them are subtle, but they are there. The problem was Jackson adding superfulous material to an already polished piece. Jackson has a good eye for fun cinematics, decent directing ability, and did a great job casting, but he is not the storyteller Tolkien was, and ought to have known his limiits.

              • Aside from the hobbits and the humans can you give an example? Because Aragorn’s only arc was: Have a goal. Achieve it, with great difficulty. And so on. Plot happened to these characters but they remained archetypes.

                The ones who had arcs were the non-mythic characters: Eowyn, Faramir (a very little: he was the human version of Aragorn) and the hobbits.

                • Well, there’s Gandalf, and Saruman — both had character arcs. Gollum had the most extensive arc. Theoden … Eowyn, Whassname, last Steward of Gondor had sort of an arc.

                  Of course, these are the characters with souls; Elves and Dwarves and Ents don’t have the same ability to change — it isn’t in their natures.

                  I will refrain from the entire question of character orcs.

                  • It should be noted that Tolkein consciously (according to Joseph Loconte in A hobbit, A Wardrobe, and A Great War) modeled Sam Gamgee on his experience of the ordinary British soldier, the Tommies and Batmen whom he observed during the first World War. In this light, the point of the story is not growth of character but revelation of character.

                    I am struggling unsuccessfully to quash the image of Frodo & Sam as played by Black Adder & Baldrick.

                    • “I am struggling unsuccessfully to quash the image of Frodo & Sam as played by Black Adder & Baldrick.”

                      *grin* Which would be which?

                  • And yet even Gimli had the growth and change to look beyond the material when he asked Galadriel for a strand of her hair rather than anything else she might have given. And the film actually managed to show that a little…. although it comprehensively abused the eventual friendship between Gimli and Legolas.

              • SheSellsSeashells

                OTOH, I have been pipe-dreaming for *years* about a Jackson-directed Silmarillion piece. Specifically, the Fall of Numenor. Waaaaaaant…

            • Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard

              Well, when Tolkien set out to write Lord Of The Rings, he set out to create a Myth.

              IMO Myths are a special case that don’t involve major character growth.

              Now, it could be argued that the Hobbits grew as characters.

              The Hobbit characters at the beginning of LOTR likely couldn’t have cleaned up the mess in the Shire. 😀

              • Exactly. The hobbit were the characters who traveled out of the familiar world we know (A version of an England of our parents) into the myth. Tom Shippey tracked the way Tolkien changed the language as the Hobbits went further into legend (and back again)

                They should and ought to have character change and growth. n the film version, they barely did. The mythic characters had “growth-n-change” that actively detracted from their role in the story.

                I blame entrenched temporal parochialism and poverty of imagination.

  12. Slight correction:

    … each human is put in a cubby and expected to live there forever.

    Not quite. The labels exist as if people would live by them forever, but at the same time they insist on being to change labels arbitrarily often, and with penalties for getting this wrong ranging from social opprobrium to (if you’re a NYC landlord) a $250,000 fine.

  13. kenashimame

    c4c

  14. Even the people who love you will not make the same choices you do. Now instead of your mother counseling you about what you really ought to study in college, take a bored bureaucrat with a computer program . . . and the power to make it so. We aren’t pegs, not even the wrong shaped ones. We’re putty, we change and grow, reshape ourselves constantly.

    But some shapes we resist taking, and some of us always will.

  15. We have only a two-way tie. Please vote. I’m sure we can get it much higher with all this month’s nominees.

    https://www.goodreads.com/poll/show/133017-what-work-about-a-parallel-or-alternate-universe-should-we-read-for-may

  16. What you might be best at, though it might conceivably be possible to objectively determine it, is not necessarily what you might be happiest doing. F. Paul Wilson, in “The Man With the Anteater”, described a government project intended to raise a bunch of children who had been carefully raised and educated based on tests that determined their greatest potential; it came apart when they realized it was possible to be something else. Just because a man might have the talent to be a great mathematician did not mean he would be happier than being a mediocre cellist. And the whole premise of the show “Dark Angel” was that the genetically-engineered, carefully-trained and -indoctrinated children didn’t WANT to be soldiers…

  17. …was asking what the difference was between us and the SJWs, except they had a college degree and we didn’t.

    Asking what the difference was between us and the SJWs, except they had a college degree in [Fill-In-The-Blank] Studies or Soft Sciences and we had degrees in Hard Sciences, such as STEM, Accounting or Economics.

    Fixed it for you. Theirs is the nice comfy cubby with no sharp edges, all corners are cut or rounded and grades are determined by how much you suck up to the teacher likes your answers. Ours is the cubby with no padding other than what is inflicted imposed by the Liberal Arts faculty to ensure we get a “well-rounded” (i.e., no sharp edges) education (translation: their departments get funded even by students who consider them little better intellectually than carny barkers and sideshow fakirs) and grades are determined by actually knowing the principles of the discipline (e.g., engineers and physicists must understand F=MA, Newton’s Laws and the Laws of Thermodynamics) and demonstrate ability to accurately perform basic computations.

  18. I don’t consider a degree a stamp of intelligence.

    An argument can be made for a college degree as a stamped intelligence. Tests have demonstrated many college graduates entered with more knowledge than when they exited.

  19. It’s like they can’t conceive of people who have been “educated” choosing a different life path from them or even having different opinions.

    If you don’t choose the same life paths and hold the same opinions, have you really been indoctrinated educated?

    What amazes me is their assumption that not just them but EVERYONE would be happy in a world like that, where each human is put in a cubby and expected to live there forever.

    Hence wrong fen having wrong fun.

  20. “If you don’t, you need a new word to describe what you are because every widget must be described so the right slot is found for him/her/shim/sher/blob.”
    How is this jamming people into a cubby? It is creating new cubbies for each new identity. Jamming into a cubby would be insisting everyone is “male” or “female”.

    • Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard

      Actually IMO “cramming” people into male or female cubby-holes isn’t that good either.

      Most of us here treat people as individuals not members of certain groups.

      After, RES and I are both males but are very different people.

      Which is more important to you?

      The individuals or what cubby-holes you can stick them into?

      • So…when someone identifies as “otherkin” or “trans”, and wants society and government to recognize them as such, that works?

        • Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard

          What a sad person it must be to define oneself in those terms.

          Why can’t they define themselves as an individual not a member of some group requiring “special treatment”.

          I joke about being a Bookloving Dragon but why “define” myself as a dragon and expect the world to treat me as a dragon?

        • If you want to call yourself a Ford Model T, I don’t care. It doesn’t affect me. Unless, of course, you want to make it affect me.

          Why would you do that?

          • There was a story some time back about bodybuilders taking certain “performance enhancing” chemicals who became convinced as a result that they could stop a moving car. They believed wholeheartedly that they were someone who could stop a moving car. They identified as such.

            The car, however, was of a different opinion.

            You can think about yourself however you want. The rest of the world is not obligated to go along with that. You can “identify” as a Kryptonian, but I guarantee that if you try to fly the results will be painful at best–tragic at worst. Not because I say so but because reality is what it is and not what you might want it to be.

            • >cough< I am Kryptonian. Sadly, there was this unfortunate incident of a practical joke involving gold kryptonite …

          • I’m just trying to parse the sentence and its ramifications. I read it as “If someone male doesn’t identify as male, that person doesn’t have to be identified as male in society” which I assumed included permission to use women’s resources. So, it’s okay of a trans male uses a women’s restroom?

            • Pre-op or post op?

              If pre-op then why? If the person is going to be traumatized by seeing a penis then maybe they’ve got a lot more serious problems than which bathroom to use.

              I’m told that actual perverts would never, ever claim to be trans to use the opposite sex’s bathroom so they can ogle little girls. It’s not like perverts haven’t hidden in girl’s bathrooms to ogle them before.

              Oh, wait, it has and it’s not even a new phenomenon:

              http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2358500/Kenneth-Enslow-Septic-diving-pervert-discovered-inside-Tulsa-park-bathroom-7-year-old-girl.html

              So give them a legal “out” for doing so?

              You want to know which bathroom to use? Look inside your pants/skirt/kilt/whatever. Dangly bits or not? Use the bathroom appropriate to the equipment present.

              Bathrooms are divided by the physical presentation–what’s between your legs, not what’s between your ears.

              • I’m trying to parse the sentence. A sentence which as written states that liberals are trying to force people who self-identify as other than male or female into pre-manufactured roles. To me, even your interpretation lends https://widgets.wp.com/notificationsbeta/2394815625#me to believe this is either a poorly thought-out application of her theme or a poorly written sentence.

                • I’m trying to parse the sentence.

                  Then why did you bring up the bathroom issues since bathrooms were nowhere mentioned in the sentence you claim you are trying to parse?

                  If you are trying to parse the sentence, I suggest you find yourself a good English textbook and learn how to diagram sentences.

                  I think you’re just trying to “score points” and are basically just trolling.

                • YellowShapedBox

                  We mean that if a man identifies as a woman, then according to cubbyhole philosophy, that is all there is to that person. They’re in the MTF-trans slot of the LGBT sector of the social justice bloc, and as such we can divine everything about them from their social status, to their relative virtue should they enter into a dispute with members of other cubbyholes, to what their opinion on gun control ought to be.

                  Talk about “erasure.”

                  • This conversation is weird. It like Tim Burke has absolutely no concept that no one was talking about bathrooms before he arrived. (I’m sure they would have shown up eventually, but they hasn’t yet.)

                  • This conversation is weird. It like Tim Burke has absolutely no concept that no one was talking about bathrooms before he arrived. (I’m sure they would have shown up eventually, but they hasn’t yet.)

                  • SheSellsSeashells

                    Beautifully summarized. That is all. 🙂

                • I think I see where there might be some honest misunderstanding here. Sarah’s comment DOES draw on some common-to-the-blog understandings in order to shorten the description needed for what she was saying. It’s a natural progression of groups to use common phrases that may not match up perfectly in meaning with what the larger community uses, and people will tend to switch automatically between uses depending on context (except that Progressives tend to assume that their group is universal, and therefore anyone who understands things differently must be stupid)

                  Here’s some explanation:

                  The Left has created a climate which consists of several parts, all of which pressure people to identify as an individuals not by being individual in and of themselves, but by seeking out some previously-unknown “identification” and declaring it to be a classification type, not merely a personality quirk, and loudly proclaiming that that is what they are. They have also created an entitlement mentality which then gives the new “class” of person the notion that they can force everyone else to refer to them in this way, and throw a tantrum when someone doesn’t call them by the correct (and self-defined) pronouns. Further, adding to the individuality push, is Diversity education, which gives them the notion that, since most minorities get some sort of special treatment, if they become a self-defined minority, they should be entitled to special treatment, too. Because of this, these people tend to define themselves in some way that sets them a little apart from everyone else, leaving with a category with a population of one. Thus, cubbyholing.

                  You see, while the references being made are for stories and such that are talking about people being told what their place is, and being forced to stay there, the actual pressure is to create one’s own hole and stay in it. The “forcing” is social pressure, not a government agency.

                  Oh, one last thing: ALL of the “free” classifications are on the Left. If you stray from the approved range, then you shall be destroyed.

      • Yep, exactly. And these people keep making new cubbies and putting in new labels, and you must fit exactly. But you know, Tim Burke has a deficiency of thinking known as leftism. be kind to the handicapped, Paul.

        • “be kind to the handicapped, Paul.”

          Would this be a bad time for me to mention that refraining from kicking Leftist intellectual cripples is what got us to this point?

          I see no point in being kind to the philosophically handicapped when they’re just going to turn around and use the crutch I just handed them to beat me into submission with. All due respect, Sarah.

        • Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard

          I thought he might have that problem but I didn’t want to “cubby-hole” him. 😉

      • I beg your pardon — I am a thing.

        Clearly, Sir Dragon, you are not a Latin scholar.