The Creature In The Garden

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I am very sorry to be dissing Rodgers and Hammerstein and South Pacific, but they were out of their raving minds when they wrote “You’ve got to be carefully taught.”

I woke up with the son running through my head and my thought superimposed on it “That’s not how this works.  That’s not how any of this works.”

You’ve got to be taught to hate and fear
You’ve got to be taught from year to year
It’s got to be drummed in your dear little ear
You’ve got to be carefully taught

[Verse 2]
You’ve got to be taught to be afraid
Of people whose eyes are oddly made
And people whose skin is a diff’rent shade
You’ve got to be carefully taught

[Verse 3]
You’ve got to be taught before it’s too late
Before you are six or seven or eight
To hate all the people your relatives hate
You’ve got to be carefully taught

This would be how things would work, if humans were born like onto angels, without an animal side.  If we were pure souls, tossed down to this workaday world, with no stain of creation, yeah, maybe.  Maybe.  The workaday world would work its magic, anyway, without the ape body.

Ah, but we do have the ape body.  One of the greatest — and arguably most harmful — delusions of the last hundred years or so, at least among the intelligentsia is the idea that we’re not animals.  It is actually kind of funny, honestly, because these are the same devoted Darwinists (BAD Darwinists, making the poor man rotate in in his grave hard enough to generate electricity that would power all of Great Britain if they only knew) that would often finish their books about how terrible humans were with “you’re just animals, stop looking at the stars.”

Of course the books were incoherent anyway, often claiming that humans were the only animal who would “wage war” or kill its own species (these people obviously never had a fighting tom cat for a pet.  Calimero killed every other male cat in the village, which is why half of the village ferals look siamese.) and at the same time claiming that we’re taught war and violence.  On second thought maybe this is not incoherent, since humans are the only ones with the capacity to learn abstract concepts.

It’s still insane and stupid.  The only place this “you have to be taught violence” could take root is among humans so divorced of nature that they can idealize it and not see that animals are arguably more violent than humans, and that animals play at fighting and dominance days after they’re born.

Even the humble chicken is a stone cold killer.  And don’t get me started on mother rabbits who eat their litters.  (No, not through some deficiency.  Some just acquire a taste for it.)

Count among Peterson’s amazing achievement of speaking the known, the things we’ve all always known, but keep forgetting when we’re propagandized with crazy day in day out, that disciplining your child doesn’t teach him or her violence.  It curbs their violence.  Because every animal is born knowing violence.  Life on Earth, from very early on has played dominance games and violence, often against its own species. It is one of the great achievements of humanity. learning to curb that violence and that natural hatred of the “different” (and this has nothing to do with race.  I am one of those people who have ridiculously early childhood memories.  I’m also one of those people who until much older could not remember faces or indeed anything visual — as far as being born premature, etc. damaged my brain, I think it whacked the visual area, which only started coming back around 14 — so I remember not liking people who smelled differently from my family.  And in the village at that time, it could very well mean they only washed once a month with home made soap.  Our laundress thought our clothes smelled wonderful even dirty, because we used “perfumy”– i.e. bought — soap.)

Those idiots who came up with the idea humans were racist as babies need their heads examined. Baby humans fear the stranger, because strangers are dangerous.  For how dangerous I refer you to our closest relatives, the chimps, who tear chimp babies limb from limb and eat them.  Usually when the babies are from another troop… but sometimes when they belong to a low-dominance female in their own troop.

It is teaching humans to overcome that so we can live in more than familial groups that makes humans strange and wondrous, not that we still have fights between groups (bigger groups, now more loosely defined) or between individuals in our groups.

And even then, if you want to train your little ape to fit in any group, you have to curb his aggression, and yes, that sometimes means a couple of swats to the behind.  You’re not teaching them violence.  You’re teaching them violence is unacceptable.  (BTW I was gratified that Peterson pretty much confirmed my approach, which was all non-violent means first, then the swat as last recourse. He also made me feel better by pointing out higher-dominance individuals will need the swat more.  This explains why one of my kids was not “spanked nearly enough” which is my way of putting it, when what I mean is “He could usually be distracted or bribed, and once we figured out taking his computer cord away worked better — when he was about 3 — we just used that, for an hour, a day, or in very bad circumstances, a week. The other… made me feel I was the worst mother in the world.  Let’s put it that way.)

I understand the military has to train humans to kill, but people who think that’s because humans are born pure and innocent also need their heads examined. It’s because you’re contravening really early training, and that can be near-impossible to break. It’s not the only early training that’s hard to break.  I remember seeing a study somewhere showing that the earliest you were potty trained the hardest to break, even when absolutely necessary.  (I’m one of those people who can’t use bedpans.  In a situation where getting up might kill me, I still had to because it was that or burst.)

We are born animals.  Each generation is born as really smart apes.  No, I’m not saying you don’t have a divine-formed soul (would I say that?)only that early on, without training, it’s subsumed to your animal nature.

Your animal brain is very old, arguably from before there were vertebrates on Earth, though it’s possible there’s more of reptilian than that. Your animal brain doesn’t care about your projected utopia.  Heck, as I’m finding out, day by day, my animal brain doesn’t give much of a hang for what my higher, rational brain wants it to do.  “We’ll have more money if you write 8 hours a day” doesn’t motivate it, because it has a warm cave and a full belly.  Yeah.  I’ll figure out a way around it. But it’s hard even working with those parts when they’re part of you.

Your animal brain will make you play violence and dominance games, unless it’s broken of it early.  Which probably explains why people raised as pacifists are the most violent and dirtiest fighters in the world and also why the left which thinks that humans have to be “taught to hate” are usually the side that goes to brass knuckles, or bicycle locks, first, and overwhelmingly.  It’s also why every regime that assumes humans are tabula rasa, and born perfect has filled mass graves.  After all, if you are born a certain way and can’t change it, you have to kill vast portions of  humanity to get to perfection.

It’s also of course because the people in charge are violent and denying that part of their nature. Psychologists have a term something like “the return of the repressed.”  When you deny what’s a natural part of you (the left applies that only to sex, which can actually return as art, but never mind…) it will come back in a weird, deformed and often lethal way.

I’m not saying — do I look like a hippie?  Okay, so I need to dye my hair.  Shut up, wretch — that humans should give in to their baser impulses and have sex with everyone like bonobos, and kill everyone or fight among themselves like chimps.

I’m saying that learning to repress those impulses and only let them out when absolutely needed IS civilization.  And civilization is a good thing.  But you need to be aware humans have to be trained NOT to act like apes.  And that the impulses are always there, even in the most civilized of humans.

And this is a good thing.  Those sublimated impulses are what gave us art and science, besides allowing us to live in cities populated by millions.

But they’re not unnatural.  And you don’t have to learn them.  And swatting your kid’s butt won’t make him a killer.  It might rather prevent him from going feral and being a maimed thing all his life, visiting violence, real or metaphorical, on innocents.

To put it in metaphorical terms: the serpent was always in the garden. It was Adam and Eve’s innocence that allowed it to do its work.

It’s when you ignore the serpent in yourself that you allow it to corrupt you.  Or your kids.

We’ve seen the serpent and it is us.  And it’s only by staring it in the face and telling it “yes, you’re part of me, but if I let you influence me you’ll destroy me” that we can save civilization.

Every day.

 

488 responses to “The Creature In The Garden

  1. Needed this. NEEDED THIS.

    Just… yeesh, passively follow some parenting groups. And if anyone mentions *any* physical force (even *pinching*, once, memorably), you get the pile on about all of the pie-in-the-sky “you’re just teaching that big people prey on small people.” Yesterday y there was one where that was applied to *any* punishment–“You’re not teach information them character, just coercion.”

    And I’m all, what COLOR is the sky on your world? Do any of you actually believe this crap, or is it all a big gaslight to get some laughs about who fell for it?

    But you don’t say anything, because you’re a lurker and don’t want the pile on. (And honestly, the no-anything group is a fraction of the size of pro- commenters, they’re just sure to comment five times as much to mask it.)

    Agh. Anyway. Um. I was glad to read this missive from someone who actually appears to have met a child at some point.

    • ime, people who are all into the “never punish” parenting styles are often pushing an emotional manipulation style… you’ll make mommy cry, or mommy will withhold affection until you do what makes mommy happy, which is horrific to me. No doubt it *works*, however.

      • You’re probably right, there.

      • Yeah, but something tells me it ends up causing the kid even more psychological issues, long-term.

      • Considering some of my elementary (and even a bit after) experiences, physical things would have been preferred. Nothing from teachers or parents, thankfully, but from so-called ‘peers’… well, only one ever did anything physical – and was thoroughly ineffectual – the others… let us say I was raised right and they live. And I still have the idea that Dr. Teller thought WAY too small.

        • BobtheRegisterredFool

          Teller did think small, but he was somewhat limited by hardware availability. Skylark and maybe Perry Rhodan are where things start getting fun.

      • I’ve known someone who espoused “Attachment Parenting”, which seems nice when you read the blurb, but once you look at the way she implemented it (no idea if she was following the recommended implementation or not), it turned more into “Crush Your Child’s Soul” parenting. I once witnessed an intense, hour-long lecture, complete with prayer and worse, ENFORCED PRAYER, forcing the child pray and ask for forgiveness and help overcoming his defective personality… All for just dumping silverware into the drawer rather than putting it away properly (I never did figure out why she thought G-d cared so much about silverware organization). Poor kid.

        Granted, the “Pointing and Laughing” parenting style that I use probably wouldn’t win any awards, but we use the tools we have and try to avoid the mistakes our own parents made when we were kids. Hopefully, my kids take from it the lesson that one can laugh at themselves, forgive, and move on. One of them I’m sure “gets it”. The other? we’ll just have to wait and see with that one.

      • Donald Campbell

        Conditional Love: very damaging [trust me]. And I probably only endured a milder form of it.
        Years ago, a co-worker informed me that I was a great manipulative b*st*rd. My response was; Thank you for that; however, understand that I am a rank amateur. My Mother is the Greatest Manipulator of her generation and my Brother is of mine. I am but a bumbling amateur, whos main skill derives from being the usual target of the Greatest.

      • SheSellsSeashells

        Yup. I figured I was doing OK the first time I had to spank Kid (at about 20 months). Two swats to the behind, she stomped off and told the ceiling fan how ill-used she was for thirty seconds, then stomped back and glomped my leg for a hug. Seemed to work pretty well and leave fewer scars than either of MY parents’ nonphysical methods…

        When she got too big to spank, the Threat of Choice was “…or I will CARRY you to the car and we will LEAVE.” This worked for an astonishing two years after she was too big to carry, because I can be damn convincing when I’m mad.

        Now she’s 12. The current not-entirely-joking Threat is “…or I will pick you up in car line with the windows down, Bon Jovi/Journey/Michael Bolton blaring, singing along loudly and sincerely.” She BELIEVES me; the last time I had to make good on that one, I wound up singing the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles theme at the top of my lungs in the middle of the mall. >:D

        • I wound up singing the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles theme at the top of my lungs in the middle of the mall.

          XD

          The most horrible punishment my mother could inflict on us when we were fighting was “I want each of you to say Three Nice Things about each other”

          She was kind if desperate to find some way on getting us to stop sniping at each other, especially in the car, and many years later, she admitted that she was shocked that we complied, when she said this.

          • SheSellsSeashells

            That is *awesome* and would have worked like a charm on one of my more obstreperous cousins. 🙂

        • “I will pick you up, while in my bathrobe, with curlers in my hair, with grandma, similarly dressed, with her calling out & waving to you …” Grandma’s voice carries, mine doesn’t. Brat never called my (not) bluff.

          When it was time to look back, realized never spanked. Not the original intent, just worked out that way. Kid is stubborn. Poor thing got double dose of it from both of us. Problem is two against one. Strongly believed in consequences & those consequences are not always spelled out, sometimes are unintended.

          Lying. Not sure where we went right, but it sure showed up when he was 8. He and the neighbor’s kids, down visiting their dad, went inline skating at the school. He came back with them carrying his skates, him holding his arm; it had a hairline fracture. They had already concocted a story about him coming down a sidewalk “ramp” and falling. He looked at them & shook his head, looked at me, & said “Guys, they will find out. The ‘ramp’ was the school slide.” Yes, he was wearing a helmet, but no wrist/hand bands.

          For the rest of the story, when the medical officials asked “How did this happen?” My answer was “That is part of his punishment. How did it happen, dear?” Kid “mumble, mumble. I roller bladed down the slide …” Yes. He had to speak up.

          The other part was he had been invited to play fall baseball at the local HS younger kids level which he had really wanted. With a splint on his arm, he couldn’t play. Made it clear that stupid actions result in consequences.

          OTOH. The next year, he managed to get a hairline fracture in the other arm learning the physics of bikes that unintentionally stop & rider doesn’t & you use your arms to brace when you hit the ground (yes, had on helmet); 100% accident. He wanted to play flag football. Even with a split on his arm, as long as it was well wrapped & that arm wasn’t used to block, he could play, so he did.

        • My younger kid responded well to computer cord being taken away for hour/day/week/and one particularly heinous offense a month. By responded well I mean stood in middle of his room screaming his head off, but next time wouldn’t do whatever the thing was. I put headphones on and ignored the shrieking.

          Threats: when he was fourteen to sixteen and annoying (have met teens, right?) my threat was “Marshall Hoyt, if you don’t stop “thing” right away, I’m going to hold you out the window by your ankles.”
          Keep in mind he was over six feet tall (six four now, though I swear he grew two inches at 22. My kids are weird) and outweighed me.
          He REMEMBERS my holding him out the window by his ankles. Even though this is physically impossible. LOL

          • Our family story is “the belt that hung behind the refrigerator”. Studded and probably four inches wide, at last telling.

            No such thing ever existed, of course.

        • Ooo, did you choose “T-U-R-T-L-E POWER!” (movie) or “Heroes in a half-shell, TURTLE POWER!” (mid-90s cartoon)?

          I got a startle-point off my husband by remembering the lyrics for the movie version, when I hadn’t seen it for years. 😀

          • SheSellsSeashells

            Mid-90s version. I am an alto, and “TURTLE POWER!” carries beautifully across the food court. 😀

            But do I get points for remembering all the lyrics to “The Last Unicorn” when she was in her pony-crazy phase? Noooooooo… /eyeroll

        • Yes, but this ONLY works for GIRLS, the Boys will just happily sing along.

      • Should’ve scrolled down a bit more, before commenting. I reckon the ‘never punish’ parents are the emotional manipulative bullies and abusers.

      • It works….up to a point. Then you find you have a teenager you have carefully taught to be a manipulative jerk. Seldom good.

        The thing is, a physical punishment, carefully defined for an equally carefully outlined infraction teaches risk management. My parents were more the ‘witholding of privilege’ types, though they were quite prepared to hit me to stop me from doing something that would hurt me more than being hit (playing with outlets springs to mind). That works, too. You learn to think ‘is the pleasure I’m pursuing worth the punishment I will get if I’m caught?’.

        The witholding affection until you please them nonsense is too losely defined, amd teaches little besides emotional blackmail.

        Which explains a lot about the Left, come to think of it.

        • The major issues I NEVER spanked (both older son) for were because I couldn’t trust myself to stop. One, he tossed Pixel out the back door while I was hugely pregnant with Marshall, and when I ran after cat, son locked me out. Reason why I always have to things on me — ALWAYS — keys and phone. I don’t buy clothes without pockets anymore.
          I didn’t have a cell phone, husband didn’t ahve a cell phone. He was in a meeting. We had no one to come open the door. I knocked at the door and d*med 3 year old instead of opening told me he was playing with the gas knobs on stove. SERIOUSLY. I finally remembered at his age I wasn’t logical and told him if he DIDN’T open the door he’d get a beating he’d never forget. He opened the door (failing to realize I couldn’t beat him if he dind’t let me in.) I told him to go to his room and stay there till his dad got home because I didn’t trust myself with him. He did. Very quietly. Dan never hit him either (we didn’t believe in delayed spanking) but had a LONG talk with him about how mommy is a berserker and what he’d done was NOT safe.
          THEN at five/six, he jumped from the top bunk AIMING at his 2 year old brother’s chest on the floor. He missed, thank G-d. He had no concept this would kill his brohter either. That was obvious when I asked him what he thought he was doing. (Yes, if he’d stopped and thought. But he dind’t. It was an impulse thing.) He says he remembers that to this day because I was pale and shaking and told him to get out of my sight because otherwise I might kill him.
          Neither offense repeated. No spanking. But apparently I’m SCARY when I’m THAT furious.

    • yes, that’s why we have a bunch of kids that think they are being oppressed when they are well above average income in the richest country in the world… and… ugh, i lost the rest of the thought

    • It’s insidious, isn’t it?

      I caught myself flinching about swatting the kid who can’t talk yet instead of trying to “reason” him out of BITING HIS SISTER’S FACE.

      I promptly identified that as being an idiot, but that I hesitated at all kind of worries me…..

      • No, it’s reached the point where one has to assess who is watching, lest they get the state to intervene.

        I was at the library, and some five-ish-sized child decided to throw a fit about leaving. (Wasn’t my kid.) Mom had a slightly younger and thankfully coopertive kid by the other hand, as she dragged her quite intent on throwing a fit in public child out of the library. An old hippie woman came up to the librarians and demanded they call the police because that woman is abusing that child, by making her do something she doesn’t want to! Forcing a kid to do something is abuse!
        The librarians and I stared at her and then each other in shock. And did nothing. I almost wish I’d had the presense of mind to record the whole thing, but I think the library has security cameras.
        Now, I noted that the old hippie woman had no intention of calling the police herself, nor was she interested in borrowing anyone’s phone. No, she wanted the librarians to report so she wasn’t involved and the call came from higher authority.

        I realized after that, that I wouldn’t have hesitated to spank my older kids in public when they were attrocious-and did many times, but I do hesitate with the youngest kids.
        That’s how much society has changed in a decade.

        • When my oldest daughter, now 28, was two or three, we were at a grocery store in a swanky neighborhood in California, and she threw a fit about something. So I commanded her “Stop crying now”. Not yelling, just command-voice, at spoken-word volume. And she stopped and sucked it up. Just when I was trying to talk to her to figure out what the blowup was about, a woman tried to physically TAKE my daughter out of my arms. I was in the Marines at the time, and was rather large an muscular (now I’m just large LOL!) so, I easily pushed her back with one arm and told her in no uncertain terms that she was about to need a hospital if she didn’t leave my kid alone. She ran away.

          A few minutes later, she showed back up with a security guard telling him… or more, screaming at him barely coherently, about how I had threatened her and how she had seen me being abusive to that baby. I stayed calm. She tried to take my kid again. Luckily, the security guard saw the look on my face and got in her way (avoiding some serious violence, I was getting more than a little angry at this point). He handed her off to the store manager, and calmly came back talked to me about what happened, while the store manager tried to get the ding-bat’s story.

          About the time the guard and I finished, ding-bat broke away from the manager and came towards us again. With a “don’t worry, I’ll handle this.” over his shoulder to me, the guard grabbed the woman and dragged her out of the store telling her that she was banned and would be charged with trespassing if she was ever found in the store again. The manager… still confused because she was never able to get a coherent story from the woman just followed her guard.

          When I was checking out, the manager showed up and told me that she had finally gotten the story from the guard, thanked me for not doing violence in her store, and asked me to wait for the security guard to walk me out to my car in case the ding-bat was dumb enough to wait outside for us. She hadn’t.

          Some people see what they think is “abuse”, and there is no telling what weird thing they are going to think is a sign of abuse, and lose their damn minds.

          • Being told ‘no’ is abuse in a number of insane people’s minds.

            Both husband and the housemate have very commanding voices. Housemate’s employed the Stern Toned No / Don’t touch that while working on a few clients’ computers before – which usually is enough to stop the kid. He admits that afterwards he is worried about parental backlash, but so far instead of freakout, the parents remark that housemate is good at handling kids, shame he can’t be hired to babysit.

            • When I was fairly young, there was a long debate off and on in the letters column of the Cleveland Plain Dealer about the ethics ad morality of child leashes. Some dim bulb would see a kid on a tether and pour column-inches of self-rightious fury into a,letter, and then other readers would write back and castigate her forma fool (which is gong to hurt the child more; being leashed or being run over?).

              Mother was firmly in the pro-leash camp, and doubted that any of the outraged had children….or if they did, would have them for long.

              • Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard

                Long before the child-leash came out, my parents lived beside a busy street and when Mom was hanging out clothes to dry, she tied a rope to me to prevent me from running out into the street. 😉

              • I was delighted by the kiddy safety leash – son was a gregarious explorer, who would hold on to the tether around his wrist, as if reassuring himself it was there, because Mummy was at the other end. It prevented him from losing me in the crowd, which happened once, and resulted in terror on both our parts. Afterward, the leash; and he was a happy tot afterward, knowing he could only go so far, and he wasn’t going to lose Mum.

                The baby leashes were new to the Philippines when he was little, so a lot of older folks were going ‘aw, that poor child is being treated like a dog!’ A young mother with two young children being carried in her arms saw my son and asked ‘Where can I get those!?’ Being as we were at the mall then, I pointed her in the direction of the department store, and I later saw her unwrapping her new purchases and putting them on her children.

                It’s a source of great comfort to the children when they know they can safely explore and not lose Mum. Contrary to protests, I’ve noticed that my son was more confident about happily exploring and looking at things that caught his eye on the leash, than without. For our part, he could do his toddling without us being afraid that someone would steal him, or our losing track of where he’d gone. Knowing he was safely tethered to Mum was a confidence boost – he could rush to Mum if he felt unsafe, and there was a safe person on the other end.

                I saw this concept employed in the World of the Others series of books by Anne Bishop. A werewolf boy had seen his mother horribly killed (I forget how) and as a response, refused to 1) shift back to human form, 2)was so traumatized that he’d basically turned into an undisciplined puppy 3)felt safe only indoors and, I believe, at the worst, a cage.

                The main female protagonist remembered a concept that had been taught to her via image training (she had been raised in captivity herself, but that’s a different topic) and went looking for something that resembled the concept, and bought it to try help said werewolf child, as he would calm down around her and act more like the child his uncle remembered. Meg eventually convinced the boy that if he felt unsafe outside, this would help him remember she was there – ‘this’ being one of those harness leashes you put on larger dogs. The concept she remembered was the safety line and buddy system used for people doing mountain climbing. The boy let her put the leash on, and was so encouraged by it’s presence that he was able to go to the back yard with her – which was when the werewolf uncle came home and saw them.

                Naturally, his first reaction on seeing his nephew leashed like a pet dog was rage, but since he was watching from the window, he could see that the effect on his nephew was a positive one; and he also was able to get out of Meg what the deal was – which made it easier for him to deal with the leash.

                Unfortunately for Meg, she nearly got eaten by their relatives, who saw the boy leashed and weren’t so inclined to listen at her explanation. She was saved by the boy, who needed desperately to explain in verbal speech that she was his ‘safety buddy, and safety buddies look out for each other with the line’, so shifted for the first time since his mother’s death to do so.

                • I have been on the periphery of the Education world for quite a few years. Most recently, Best-Husband-Ever was employed as an aide in a Special Needs classroom. We both learned a LOT during that time, including thanking our lucky stars every day that our passel of children were all healthy and developing normally.
                  I have seen, several times in public, a child older than toddler on a child leash, and passers-by freaking out about it.
                  What these passers-by fail to understand is that many children on the Autistic spectrum will wander off if not holding someone’s hand or being watched. Every. Second.
                  When a child on the spectrum wanders off, even a child older than a toddler, this is a very serious problem.
                  This child may be pre-school or elementary school age, and unable to respond to his name when called or even know his name when asked.
                  This child, being a few years past toddler, can travel considerably farther before Mom or Dad notices that little Johnny isn’t standing where he was a few seconds ago. This child can also get himself into more dangerous situations (running into a parking lot, knocking over displays, etc).
                  Wearing a child leash is not cruel or unusual punishment for these children.
                  It is what a parent decides is the best way to keep their child with Autism safe when they are in a public place.

                • As far as I’m concerned, the only ways a child leash would be child abuse is 1.) using an actual dog collar and leash (very dangerous, why would anyone do this? Oh, fashion… it was a goth-mom, still too dangerous) 2.) literally dragging the kid by the leash (although I have seen this employed on a smooth, slick floor with a good harness-style leash, while the kid was giggling his assets off, so not harming him or child abuse in that instance) or 3.) jerking on the leash to get the kids attention / as punishment (friend literally had to drag me away to keep me from pounding the kid’s parents about the third time I saw the toddler jerked off his (her?) feet just because the parents were ready to move on and the child wasn’t paying attention). I’ve seen all three of these at one time or other, and it put me off the idea of child leashes for a while until I realized just how helpful they can be, and that I wasn’t prone to doing any of those things.

                  Well… ok, sliding the kid across the floor on his rump sure looked like fun, but the woman literally dragging the screaming baby through the grocery store made me want to smack her.

                  • I am against the collar also BUT I have seen a few that needed a chook chain. Just saying it depends on the child.

                  • I dragged Robert all over JFK when he was one and a half. It was that or miss the flight. And he refused to walk because he enjoyed sliding on his belly. Sigh. He was a weird one.

              • The first time I saw kids leashed, was a women with triplet boys about 6.
                I walked over to her and said that what a good idea that was and thanked her for her consideration of other people. She explained that she had made the harnesses because the ones available were to easy for the boys to get out of.

                I have since praised the others that I have seen using them.

              • SheSellsSeashells

                I had a friend who God blessed with the perfect reply at the perfect time: namely when someone sniffed at her child leash and said “she’s not an Animal!”, she snorted and said “All right, YOU watch her for an hour then and tell me what you think.”

                The child in question loved her leash and called it her tail. 😀

              • My mom use to grumble about kid leashes….then she was around kids and vehicle traffic not used for animal-feeding purposes. 😀

                • My dear little daughter – who was adventurous and totally fearless – was prone to let go of my hand … so I totally approve of kid-leashes. And I make a point of complimenting mothers who have theirs so constrained, when I see them, these days.

            • SheSellsSeashells

              Kid used to have days that I described as “child in search of a boundary”. On one of them, she decided that skipping away from me in the grocery line would be Fun. My immediate snarl of “get over here NOW”…well, it stopped her. It also made the people on either side flinch, the ten-year-old two lines down hide behind his father, and my cashier look at me and go “DAAAAAAAYMN, you sound just like my momma.”

              • Yep, there’s that tone of voice, so very recognizable. And it is really children in search of boundaries – necessary for them, because otherwise they’ll wander off or be taken by evil people…

                …and the last part may be THE reason why the progs want to be able to dictate what is ‘acceptable’ in our raising of our children. I mean, how many of them have been outed as sexual predators? And how often do we see them run interference for each other? They’re the monsters in the forests of society.

            • When I use a commanding tone (I’ve been asked if I was in the military), I frighten adults at long distance (relative to the loudness). My boys never ONCE was impressed by it. One of the reasons they drove me crazy.

              • Mom is the same way, was never in the military. The 3 of girls learned to selectively ignore her. Her voice caries at a whisper. Our husbands still can be startled by her. Mine most of all, as well as our kid. Primarily because while my sisters’ voices are not as loud, their voices still are able to carry, easily. Mine. Nope. Always getting told to speak up. When I yell people can’t hear me. When I yell I get headaches, so I don’t yell.

        • Unfortunately. Because the correct answer is to take the hippie woman and prosecute her. Interference with discipline is contributing to the delinquency of a minor.

          Then break out the Singapore Slugger. Three strokes of the cane should drive the point home adequately.

        • SheSellsSeashells

          My husband moved several notches up on the Serious Consideration list when we were out on a date and listened to the four-year-old boy in the booth behind us waving a butter knife at his mother and going “I’m gonna CUT YOU!” The immediate telepathy between the two of us was…quite impressive.

        • “No, she wanted the librarians to report so she wasn’t involved and the call came from higher authority.”

          Typical MO of the Left.
          That’s why they tax “you” to give money to “him” and call it “charity” – they aren’t willing to pony up their own funds.

        • Oh, it’s worse than that. Even odds she tries to report the librarians for not acting as “mandatory reporters”.

      • Yep. Me too. Heck, only way to get older son to stop biting EVERYONE including his cat was to bite him. Once he got it would HURT if he did this, he stopped it cold.

        • stop biting EVERYONE including his cat was to bite him.

          … I’d have thought the cat would teach him that biting was a bad idea…

          • It’s odd – there are things our cats would have removed our faces for doing, which they will put up with from children.

            • Animals recognize children. Had exactly the same with my siblings

              • SheSellsSeashells

                Yup. We had a 90-pound beastie who my friend’s little brother cracked across the nose with a large rawhide chew. The dog just blinked, said “Puppies, what’re you gonna do?” and sedately removed himself from the situation.

            • Our old black and white (she was born an old cat.) Waited till I was 3, then figured I was old enough to learn ‘proper respect for a feline’ and next time I got too rough for her she scratched me up. I ran to mom and dad and they asked “Well what did you do to the cat?” The other two cats in the house were more tolerant but they had limits too. (repeated the process with my brother when HE hit 3, and since it was the same age for both of us, I think that was the age they decided ‘kitten old enough for lesson’.) As we got older they taught us more about Proper Respect for the Cat.

          • Our cats have a “baby tolerance” thing.

            I think it’s because they know that if they maim the kids, they’re going to be mittens…..

            • Our cats never let the kid get near enough to them until he was civilized. I swear they never touched the floor or anything within his reach until he was about 4.

            • SheSellsSeashells

              We had a Maine Coon, which is a notoriously laid-back breed. He would sit on my non-nursing side while I fed Kid, even when she got big enough to be grabby. The only time he ever even raised a fuss was when she got a handful of whisker, and I can’t blame him there.

              Besides, he was helpful. He would lurk outside the playpen waving his tail at her. She wanted the Tail worse than anything, and it provided great motivation to learn crawling. 😀

              • Yes. Pretty sure cats were the motive for early mobile ability of kid. Crawled at 6 months, immediately went to walking & climbing holding on to things. Running before he was 10 months. Trying to get to those fluffy mobile toys.

                Of coarse the cats reaction was “what do you mean ‘it’ moves?” That was after “What? It is staying? It isn’t going home?”

            • Ooooh yeah. Val would just give us the “Sigh, kittens” look when Vincent, as a toddler, would grab her by the tail (she’d stop trying ot run away at that point) and allow herself to be picked up and held like a much loved stuffed toy. We noticed that when Vincent was happily carrying her to and fro, her tail would do that lazy, contented swishing… which meant she didn’t mind it at all.

              I rather miss her, and she’s been gone 9 years now. She was the cat Rhys got for me – the one who wrapped around his hand and bit down and wrapped around his hand like a clawed fury, when he bent down and picked her up (we’d been told, ‘if you can catch the one you want, you can have it,’ by the owner of the garden shop.)

          • No. Petronius the Arbiter, nickname Cat from Hades would let that boy do ANYTHING to him. When Robert was one he dragged pete around by the tail. I was alerted to it by little claws scrabbling on hardwood and strangled little mews.
            This is same cat who once came in through an old screen (i.e. metal) on a window because I’d just put Robert in the bath, the bath was a little too cold and he bawled (around one) and Pete came through the screen, chased me off, and stood on the side of the tub hissing and spitting until Robert quieted down. I wasn’t allowed to touch Robert till he stopped crying.
            He was a grand ol’ cat, but putty in that boy’s hands.

        • Donald Campbell

          My best Friend had to do the same to one of his twin boys. Worked well too. I had him and his Brother in the back yard swing set, and he had climbed up the side to grab the chain and force his brother’s swing into the pole. Twice I told him stop, he ignored me. I then chose to reason with him [a 2 year-old]. I said, do you want me to SMACK your hand? NO!!! Then stop grabbing the chain. Worked fine.

      • People who blather about children being allowed to act naturally should be forced to watch several hours of unsentimental documentaries about the behaviors of social apes.

    • Humans are animals. And nearly all animals that raise their young employ controlled and appropriate force and violence to teach them proper behavior.

      • I learned how to best treat cats by careful observation of how a mama cat treats her kittens. Quite firmly, just shy of physical damage, but very consistent. Usually by pinning their skulls firmly to the ground by a front paw until the little ruffians settled down.

        • If you can mimick an accurate warning hiss, that is then followed by a firm pinning if necessary, in the future you frequently only need the hiss. Even full grown the hiss is enough to make them sit and go “I changed my mind voluntarily”. No guarantee they won’t do whatever it is the minute your back is turned

    • ‘Teaching to prey on other people?’

      Hon, people already DO that, and I’ve always felt the ones who protest about us ‘traditional methods’ parents are the ones who want their children to be the predators, both real and metaphorical, especially the manipulative kind. I’ve always felt the anti-bullying rules in school and society these days were made by the bullies, and benefits the bullies, not the victims.

      • Oh, hell, yes! And what is worse is that so many of the bullies will go out into the wide world without any idea that anyone will fight back, and one day they will fail their victim acquisition roll, and the ‘victim’ will kill them…and probably feel awful afterwards.

        My complete,contempt for Antifa was cemented by videos of them blocking streets, amd hammering on cars. They are so SURE that nobody will run them over, that it’s a treat to watch some poor soul, exasperated beyond endurance, do just that.

        • My aunt in the US, back in the 80s, recounted how she was on her way home from work (she was a nurse) one late night. She was at the stop light, alone, in her car, when a crazy man suddenly ran out of the alley towards her car, an axe raised over his head. She was frozen with shock, until the axe smashed at the car, at which point she gunned the accelerator and sped away, screaming.

          Later, my father gave us lessons about if we were ever, EVER surrounded by a mob, or even just attacked while in our car, our first responsibility was to our own lives, and if they were trying to keep us imprisoned by body-blocking the car and threatening our lives, we were to run over the people blocking us. That’s what HE would do, to keep us safe, and he expected us to keep ourselves safe as well.

    • I’m the oldest of several, so I often had to babysit my younger siblings as a teenager. At one point, one of my sisters was getting particularly troublesome, and ignoring any instructions I gave her. Physical disciplining was out of the question (sibling, not parent). So I dragged her to her bedroom, parked myself in front of her door, and then sat there until our parents got home. And then I called her out and had her explain to our parents why she was in her room.

      She was much less of a problem after that.

  2. Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard

    While the military has to convince soldiers to “ignore their early no violence training”, IMO the military has to train soldiers to “use violence correctly and when to use violence”.

    • Yes. Then there is that little thing about running toward recognized danger at risk to oneself … and keeping your head while you are at it. That also is not entirely human nature either.

    • Military discipline is and was developed primarily as 1) don’t break formation, and 2) stop when ordered to stop. Without military discipline we’re back to marauders raping and pillaging. The conditioning necessary to *stop* killing when totally hyped on adrenaline is enormous.

      And yes, it’s very much like Sarah said that we also teach and discipline children so that they learn not to use physical force to get what they want, so that they don’t go with their instinctive responses to anger and hurt and fear and frustration and bite and hit other children. We teach them not to lie to get what they want. Kids aren’t all the same, and maybe *that* is the problem… our families are too small and we no longer have an understanding that this child or that child will experiment to see what works. Watching a toddler *decide* to tell an untruth in their favor is an amazing thing. No, they don’t have to be *taught* to use lies or use force. They have to be taught not to.

      So yes, children *taught* that other people are human and matter and you should never hurt them, have to be *taught* to shoot at human shaped targets.

      • That’s the difference between “soldiers” and “warriors.”

        Some illiterate propagandists in the Army have been blithering “warrior.”. No. The Army doesn’t have warriors. Warriors are the dead bodies the Army steps over as they go home.

        • The Army doesn’t have warriors. Warriors are the dead bodies the Army steps over as they go home.

          I sense a (visually enhanced”) meme forming… I hope.

        • Marauders, barbarians… I’d never really heard the connotation of “undisciplined” for warriors.

          • Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard

            The “undisciplined” aspect of warriors that I’ve heard about is the idea that individual warriors find it hard/impossible to fight together as a team against others.

            While soldiers are taught to fight together as a team against others.

            • Okay, that makes sense.

            • Which is why the “Army of One” tag line from a decade or so ago was dumb. The Army is a team. Even the elite units fight as a team, even if it’s just you and your buddy.

              • That was truly cringeworthy.

              • Amen. My service was in the Air Force (Avionics repair tech), but I think I understand a little of how the other services operate, I cringed. Even given that the job of buying recruiting ads was a likely spot for a lateral transfer out of the chain of command, I wondered how the Army could have promoted such a clueless idiot to high enough rank for it.

            • You can see it in basketball. Some teams have “star players.” All the plays are designed to let that player shine. Other teams have the “team” aspect down—and those do better in tough games, because you can’t foul out a team the way you can a star player.

        • William Newman

          The warrior approach has various limitations. As far as I know, no one has scaled it up to the kind of large units that modern nation states deploy routinely. It also doesn’t seem to be all that good at ruling technologically advanced societies. (As far as I know, historically the various settled societies that got whomped and then ruled by nomads or hill tribes or whatever very seldom ended up better at civilization-enabled warfare tech like warships or fortresses or siege engines or road networks.)

          It has been a long time since gunpowder tech took off, and ever since then, those warrior society disadvantages have been serious, enough so that it got pretty hard for non-civilized societies to go toe to toe with the core of civilized societies. And today, after quite a few doublings of civilized per-capita productivity after the Industrial Revolution, and about as many doublings of civilization-enabled warfare effectiveness (“whatever happens, we have got…”), those disadvantages seem to be completely overwhelming. But as late as the mid 19th century, one or two doublings into the Industrial Revolution, it seems to have been more dangerous to go to war against reasonably good warriors (some of the Plains Indians groups, e.g.) than against mediocre soldiers (some of the Chinese efforts in that era, e.g.). So I think the qualitatively greater threat of soldiers today is primarily because pissing off an enemy who can raise and supply soldiers carries a serious risk of awakening a sleeping giant and filling him with a terrible resolve (or just pissing off an active giant who hadn’t been paying much attention to you before, or whatever). It might also be true that a group of soldiers in the better modern militaries is inherently much more effective than any group of the same size that one of the old warrior societies could have organized, but that doesn’t seem nearly as obvious to me as the very severe societal scaling and productivity limitations that warrior societies so consistently failed to overcome.

        • That’s the difference NOW. Time was when the difference was a soldier was a dumb peasant who followed the orders of a Warrior, and a Warrior was somebody who understood War.

          The soldiers of Wellington’s army had what discipline was demanded of them, or the squares would have broken at Waterloo. Where we are different is that we expect a higher degree of doscipline of our soldiers…an active degree that involves initiative as well as cohesion.

          I think a band of modern American soldiers armed with Napoleonic weapons they had been trained with would slaughter an equal number of Napoleonic officers. But that’s an armchair opinion.

    • Spot on. The violence is easy. How much, what kind, when , where, and against who are the important ones. The military isn’t so good at the why part because soldiers who ask why don’t follow orders well unless they have a vested interest in the outcome.

  3. Humans are born selfish, with an amazing capacity for looking the other way when it comes to self-examination of disturbing faults.

  4. In fairness to Rodgers and Hammerstein, their point was that particular prejudices have to be taught, as opposed to generalized stranger danger, which is endemic to the human condition.
    The latter is relatively healthy, at least when it comes to initial first contact–if nothing else, it offers less room for something to go wrong–but the former tends to cause more problems than it solves.

    • Yes, but I’ve heard the left push this as proof we’re born pure….

    • I would hesitate to take major philosophical points from any Broadway musical.

      But that’s me.

    • And they were wrong. There is at least one anecdotal story of a study where researchers dyed a monkey pink and then had to save that monkey before its compatriots torn it apart. More on point, recent research shows human infants start showing racial bias by age 1 – well before they can be “taught” anything.

      Incidentally, humans are not the only species which “wages war”. Wars have been observed between different troops of chimpanzees (resulting in one troop being mostly killed and their territory absorbed by the winning troop – at least for a while … at least in the Gombe Chimpanzee War).

      • And by “racial bias” they mean “notices faces” and recognizes a physical difference.

        Let me tell you about the time my husband shaved off his beard…

        • Notice faces and prefer to look at some faces over others … and react negatively to “strange” faces which don’t fit the familiar pattern.

          • All the kids utterly terrified of Santa Claus.

            • He’s the happy face of the Surveillance State, and he’s keeping a little list…

              • The Elf on the Shelf works for the FBI.

                • naah, the Elf works for the CIA, the stuffed bear is with the NSA, and the carved wooden woodchuck is with the FBI.

              • A strange man breaks into my house when I’m asleep? You bet I hated the very notion of Santa Clause. I was two when I announced that Mommy and Daddy brought the presents and very pleased.

                I’ve also heard from a mother about how she had to promise that she and the father would get the presents from Santa Claus and not actually let him in the hosue.

                • We got our stockings on St. Nicholas’ Day. So I knew early that Santa Claus was a saint and a bishop, and that obviously Mrs. Claus and possibly the e!ves were all made up. i did not see any problem with him having a flying sleigh and reindeer… But hey, heavenly flying chariots are a thing.

                  I was not clear on how come I got Christmas presents from him and not from, say, the Three Kings, but I was a mannerly child and not about to question free presents. I only got suspicious when I realized the tags signed by Santa Claus were in a relative’s handwriting, which was about the time I realized it was all part of a tacit family game. So that was that.

                  All of my little kid skepticism was focused on things like UFO books and In Search Of type shows. I wanted to read about weird happenings, but I just could not believe the weird explanations. They were good for encouraging interest in geography and history. After that, I was more into horses and mystical saints (after I had my teen detective series phase), and then I discovered sf/f and adult classic mysteries.

                  • My kids have heard about St. Nicholas since they were little, and they love putting their shoes out on St. Nicholas’ Day. I have never said anything about Santa Claus, and all presents from family are carefully labeled. They actually still seem to think he brings the stocking stuff, though. (We open the stockings that night, a tradition from my father—who decided that it kept Christmas from being a big morning and an afternoon letdown.)

                    A year or two back, one of the kids brought up the concept of Santa not being real. The littlest is still pretty young, and was in the car, so I asked what they thought. The eldest said, “I think Santa is dead and other people are pretending to be him.”

                    Pretty accurate guess, from my perspective…

                    • We did gifts the night before, stockings the morning– *I* freaked out about a strange guy coming into the house so my folks explained it to me, but somehow I just never went in for screwing up other folks’ harmless fun.

              • SheSellsSeashells

                Mine threw her Elf on the Shelf into the soup pot. “EWF stock! Dis gonna be yummy!”

                I have no idea where she learned about making stock at the tender age of two…

        • So Sarah being face-blind as a child, sounds like she had a developmental pre-disposition toward ‘un-civilized’ behavior; distrusting everyone who was strange until she got a chance to smell them or hear them.

        • No different than dogs. I was on the couch just getting used to my scba mask when dog came out. I sat up and she pretty much fell to the floor before lowtailing to her crate.

          • None of our dogs ever liked motorcycle helmets, although they got the concept that a person could wear one and still smell like themselves. But seeing a person in one, out of smell range, was a cause for guard barking.

        • “Let me tell you about the time my husband shaved off his beard…”

          Yes. Been there for that one. We tried to head off the “trauma”. Dad was going to trim & cut off his beard with kid watching him, & touching dad’s face, so it wouldn’t be abrupt … Yes. That. Worked. NOT!!!

          Huge scream from the kid out of the bathroom. I go sprinting in, thinking kid has somehow all but killed himself. I mean it was a LOUD scream of terror/fear/hurt. I get there. Kid is blubbering , crying, & saying “something”. Dad is all but curled up against the wall & the sink counter, laughing, hard. So hard he could he could barely say anything. Finally figured out what kid was screaming:

          “Daddy. Broke. His. Face.”

          Okay then. I (barely) got out “This was your bright idea. Enjoy.” Did a 180 and ran for the kitchen. Where I finally died laughing. It is funny, now & forever. Kid was about 30 months.

          • *is dead from laughing at “Daddy broke his face”* That’s a precious memory and should be treasured for all eternity XD

            Also trotted out and recounted for sharing. =D

            • “Daddy broke his face.” & “Daddy broke the moon.”

              So wished we’d had the tape video up & running. But we didn’t have it out up & running all the time. Somethings you just can’t recreate. Now the picture of the kid in the purple Barney Halloween costume. That is on tape & slide & was blown up for display at his Eagle Court of Honor … I know we are bad bad parents.

              Yes. I whip both out regularly. These will die when we do.

        • That’s a thing on Youtube – videos of father / other frequently seen close male relative shaving + baby’s reactions….

          The initial one is usually crying in fear. Takes a little while for the kiddy to realize it’s Daddy / relative.

      • That study was really obvious junk, if you could even find the descriptions of what they actually did. I can’t even remember WHERE I finally found it, mostly remember my “seriously?” reaction. It was serious barrel scraping– like, the kids responded differently to people who looked different, thus raaaaaacist. (rather than “pattern recognition”)

        They wanted a result, and fiddled around enough to find it and get the headlines.

        • What I’ve read is that prejudice based on skin color starts to kick in during the teenage years. I don’t remember where I read that, though, so take it with a large bunch of salt.

          • It might be when kids really start to form cliques or friendship groups or “bands” and considering that most of the kids are in school which is a purely artificial social environment that doesn’t normally exist at all, ever, and the constant message *carefully taught* that everyone is supposed to notice and take into account who is like-you and who is not and all social judgments are related to identity, particularly racial or ethnic, in the larger world… if there *wasn’t* an uptick in band forming and racial side choosing I’d be shocked.

            I don’t think that racism could be more *carefully taught* than by the current indentitarian paradigm if a person set out to do it on purpose.

          • Depending on where and when they did the study, I can buy it– because that’s when schools switch from the “I have a dream” style stuff over to “here’s a long list of ways that whites are horrible and you must must MUST be obsessed with race” stuff.

          • I remember an incident when I was three or four (those are the two years when my parents lived in that particular apartment block). Our neighbors in that apartment block were a black family. One day I saw them going into their apartment, or coming out, and asked my parents (loud enough that they could overhear me), “Mommy, why is their skin black? That’s weird.” Or something to that effect.

            Thankfully, they were amused at the three-year-old kid rather than being offended. 🙂 But my parents made sure I learned why what I had said was rude. (They also taught me, although it probably didn’t come up in THAT teachable moment, that people’s skin color doesn’t matter: we’re all alike before God. BOY do I wish that that was what the broader culture was teaching today.)

            BTW, I spent the first two years of my life surrounded by people with both light and dark skin tones (my babyhood playmate, born just months before me, was from India). I’ve seen photos of me, a PALE white baby, being held by a grinning black woman who was apparently highly amused at how much our respective skin tones contrasted. But at age three or four, I didn’t remember any of those people, or at least I didn’t remember their skin colors. So I felt like our black neighbors were the first people I’d seen whose skin looked “weird” (read: different) to me, and I naturally asked my parents about it. Which goes to illustrate a point about when, and how, kids start to notice skin color.

            As for the “prejudice” point that Junior brought up, my theory (which I held long before I read Sowell’s Black Rednecks and White Liberals, though his essay confirmed much of what I thought) is that prejudice based on skin color usually isn’t actually based on skin color once you dig down into it. Usually, once you start asking probing questions, you find that it’s prejudice based on culture. Since ethnic groups usually overlap with culture, skin color is a shorthand: I see someone with that skin color or those facial features, I have a pretty good guess as to what behaviors I’ll see from them. But it’s behavior and culture that people are usually prejudiced against, and skin color is just the visual marker that lets them assume culture with a high (but not 100%) degree of accuracy.

            • BobtheRegisterredFool

              Apparently we key in on to how people speak.

            • It’s rude to make comments about other people’s appearance, especially that of strangers. Skin color is only one of the options, and a lot have nothing to do with race.

              • My explaining that to the eldest went something like “yes, he does have a beard like a Santa, but you’re not supposed to talk about how people look anywhere they can hear. You might hurt their feelings, even if you think that it’s really neat.”

                That last part goes with some vague memories of seeing people with REALLY FREAKING AWESOME scars, and I can just imagine what’d be like if you were scarred and some little twit started loudly calling everyone’s attention to it. (My grandfather’s generation, only two male relatives had all their fingers– we’re strange about scars.)

          • SheSellsSeashells

            I am one hell of a lot more prejudiced post-Obama than I was pre-. Just sayin’.

            • BobtheRegisterredFool

              Yes and no for me.

              Used to be, given the option, I’d put down no preference instead of white. I put down white these days. I still care about American over many other categories.

              I strongly dislike Obama, and dislike many of his supporters. Black Americans disproportionately supported Obama, and heavily backed a number of his really stupid political pushes. But I too carry a massive grudge over segregation, and can not find it in me to be entirely unsympathetic to someone who has very screwed up thinking in reaction to it.

              • SheSellsSeashells

                I was born well after the Civil Rights Movement, which may have something to do with it. It’s not color that makes me withdraw benefit of the doubt, it’s certain speech patterns that make me go “liberal; alert alert alert!” 🙂

          • Same is good, different is bad. That’s hardwired and required for survival in the pre-modern world. If all a kid sees are white people the child will recoil from any other. Substitute black, Asian, bearded, clean-shaven, any other unique descriptor for white in the previous sentence- same result. People my age and a few years either way are likely the least prejudiced of any before or since. We were carefully taught that all people were the same, in school, church, and social groups like Scouts. That we all wanted the same things in life, all had the same dreams. Turns out that was a lie- but- it also allows us to more easily evaluate individuals as individuals and not judge them by the group they belong to.

            Schools and churches today teach prejudice by telling children who have that hardwired programming that same is good different is bad that everyone is different with different dreams and goals and the differences should be celebrated. Thus setting up distrust because hardwired programming can’t be overcome. And I honestly think the majority of educators are too dumb to realize children have that hardwired programming in them.

        • Donald Campbell

          I believe that is how all ‘science’ now works:
          1] State desired result.
          2] Choose biased study group, likely to achieve result.
          3] Modify data, discard as outliers non-result findings [unless an “adjustment” can be rationalized.
          4] Publish findings.

        • IIRC, they showed pictures of different people to babies, and they reacted positively to people who looked like Mommy the most, (followed by perhaps Daddy) and then started injecting other ethnicities – which garnered the most opposite reaction, naturally, when they had a white baby reacting to a black person’s photo. I remember thinking at the time “And a black baby to a white person’s reaction is…?”

          My eldest daughter was a month old when she first saw Africans – we were in Charles De Gaulle Airport – and they had the very black skin with very white eyes. She saw them clearly enough because the African couple walked past close enough for her to do so, and I was carrying her at the time (the airport was a bit crowded then.) Her response was ‘eyes huge with terror, and stiffen up and hold very still, eyes tracking strange people until they were gone.’ Only when she deemed they were ‘safely’ far enough away did she start crying – in those ‘I’m afraid, help!’ tones. Prior to that, she had been exposed to very few people outside of the family, and by coincidence, only other Asians besides family, or Hispanics (so the general skintone/hairtone were the same enough to not illicit a reaction.)

          • o_O Moderation? I have no links. What happened?

          • That last line reminds me– I’ve noticed something kinda cool, it’s really hard to tell the fashionable ladies who are Mexican from the ones who are non-rail-thin Asians down here. The love of long, thick eyelashes gives ALL of them sort of almond-shaped eyes, so unless the lady looks like the bot-fight leader from Big Hero Six, you only find out when you hear their last name.

            One lady in our group is married and has a generic American name, so it wasn’t until she mentioned her mom’s lumpia that I had a clue she wasn’t local. 😀

            • Yep. a fair number of Filipinos have this tendency to look very similar to Mexicans on first glance. Probably because of rather similar feature-sets. Even the priest who baptized my eldest initially – to me – looked like he was half-Pinoy. It doesn’t help at ALL either that Filipinos and Mexicans tend to share Hispanic surnames, given names… and naming conventions. Hehehe.

              • I have a friend who is an actor who is half Filipino, half Mexican. I actually didn’t clue in to the latter until I saw his comment on an audition he’d done. And his last name is Rivera. *facepalm*

                He did get to be in The King & I on Broadway and in the touring company as the Kralahome, so that’s pretty cool.

      • You do realize that you just proved my point, right? Both of those are generalized stranger danger.

    • Nope. Racism springs from stranger danger. There’s some kids with no sense of stranger danger, and they do not have racist beliefs or even stereotypes.

      Hence the immense unlikeliness of eradicating it.

  5. “You’ve got to be taught to hate and fear
    You’ve got to be taught from year to year.”

    No, you don’t. Following is an anecdote from which I concluded that fear of the other is inherent in us. On my weeks off from the drilling rig in Argentina, I usually went to a nearby big city where I had made friends among some STEM grad students and other locals.
    At a local residential hotel/pensión, a toddler – estimated 18 months- screamed at me from a distance of an estimated 15 feet. He continued to express discomfort at my presence, until he gradually got accustomed to me. By the end of my 1-2 week stay, the nearby toddler had become comfortable with my nearby presence while I chatted with his mother, the hotel manager.
    My conclusion was that the toddler initially was scared of me because I looked rather different from the people who lived in the residential hotel. I had fair skin, blue eyes and dirty blond hair, while the residents- most of whom were of Indian/mestizo background- had various shades of brown skin, brown/black eyes, and black hair. ( I am reminded of an old Argentine saying: “South America begins north of Córdoba.”) In addition, I wore eyeglasses; the residents did not. My hair was also longer than the norm for Argentine males.
    I concluded from this incident that fear of the other is inherent in us. At the same time, the changing reaction of the toddler indicated that fear of the other can be overcome.

    • The first time I saw a blond man, I was 6. I was terrified for months, including nightmares.

      • Ha! The first time I saw a blond haired, blue eyed man was a young expat student who was teaching swimming lessons at the pool we went to. He happened to surface from the water, with his eyes made especially huge by swimming goggles. My reaction as a three year old?

        “SHARK!!!!!!!!” *flee crying* *refuse to go near water while he was there.*

    • Which all makes perfect evolutionary sense.

    • I just finished reading Cary Elwes’ memoirs of filming the Princess Bride, and in it he relates the tale of Chris Sarandon (Prince Humperdinck) and his daughters. Daughters, who were quite young, had expressed fascination at the idea of meeting a real giant (far over and above the idea of princesses or pirates), so their father asked Andre the Giant if he could bring his daughters to meet him. Andre (being a very genial, kind, accommodating man) agreed immediately.

      Daughters took one look at ‘the giant’ as he stood up and promptly began screaming, and would in no way be comforted. Chris Sarandon, of course, apologized profusely (after hustling his children off), and Andre just shrugged and said “Some people react like that. Some run away, some run to me.” But the point, of course, was that people never had a *lack* of reaction to him.

      Even Robin Wright, apparently, had a panic attack the first time she met him–and she was a fully grown, albeit a very young, adult. It was just…an instinctive, hardwired reaction of “THIS IS NOT NORMAL, RUN AWAY NOW”

      • I know of a fellow, human, who has a Krampus costume. Many young humans react as one might imagine to such a visage. But, it has been related, there is always “that one little girl” (or boy) who glomps the ‘monster’ and pulls him to Mommy and/or Daddy, “Can I keep him?!”

        And, yes, I have experienced if not that level, at least the “Keep me away from.. THAT!” and the *GLOMP* my own self. I will say that “Keep me away from THAT!” has happened with both toddlers and adults. Adults have some restraint, I suppose, as only toddlers have done the *GLOMP*.

      • I miss Andre the Giant. Not that I ever knew him (or even ever met him for that matter), but I always loved seeing him do interviews and stuff because he was always seemed like such a exceptional, nice person.

        • He does seem like someone I would have loved to meet in person.

        • When I was a kid, the western store a few valleys over had a pair of boots he’d special ordered.

          They had them because someone screwed up, and they were too small.

          These things were…well, I’m pretty sure I could’ve stood in it with both feet, and managed a bag-race type hop with ease.

    • You probably matched the description of a ghost from the grave that the mom used to frighten the kid into obedience. Once he realized that you weren’t going to steal him away to Jared or some other baddie for whatever he’d being doing wrong, he relaxed.

  6. In my old list of “25 Simple Thing You Can Do To Mind Your Own Goddamned Business” I ended with “No one without inhibitions is fit for polite society. Please develop some.”

  7. These people really… seriously… say that we’re the only animal that fights wars.. (I originally said ‘think’ instead of say, but then realized that ‘say’ or even ‘like to pretend’ is more appropriate.) but what, exactly, do they think two wolf packs fighting over territory is, or two troops of bonobos… or heck, two different anthills…

      • And yet there is a documented 4 year war between 2 chimp troops which dates back to the early 1970s. (Indeed, they’ve even documented one chimpanzee troop committing “genocide” on a nearby troop.)

        • After Jane Goodall was sainted by academia, I’m surprised badthink “research” like that wasn’t purged…

          • Naah, Goodall observed stuff like that. I remember seeing something a decade or so ago from her to the effect that people saying it didn’t happen were glossing over her research.

        • The whole Naked Ape and killer ape trope actually states we’re the only animal that kills.

          • Surely they say “Murders”. Even the brain-proof Left cannot possibly believe that no other animal KILLS.

            • Re the brain-free left: They mostly know about that icky killing-and-eating stuff that predators do to prey, but they think it’s learned behavior (sound familiar?) – there is documented vegan position (which was mentioned here and I tracked down, disbelieving, and confirmed) proposing building a wall* on the African savannah and moving the prey to one side and the predators to the other, where the contention was that the predators would not starve because they’d seen their cat eat grass.

              This is the level of intellectual rigor that the side in favor of civilization is facing.

              * Yeah, there they are OK with walls.

              • Speaking of walls, per the local news this morning Trump’s borderwall is going up, right now, in El Paso.

                They’re upgrading part of the wall that they put in 10-15 years back (to incredible success) but it is Trump’s Wall.

                So if anybody tries the old “where is Trump’s Wall” to try to claim it isn’t started– they’re now officially wrong.

    • I remember reading somewhere about octopuses going to war against each other.

  8. BobtheRegisterredFool

    I learned a lot about evil in preschool. Spent a number of years trying to learn to be a decent human being.

    Surprise, surprise, in my teens I slowly worked out that we can’t really be entirely rid of killing. Refusing to do the needful causes more deaths.

    But true need is rare. Inappropriate refusal and mistaken acting are both very costly. The answer is mental preparation, and honing judgement. There are lessons to learn from Tecumseh Sherman and Curtis LeMay.

    • I was told that those who I grew up with / went to school with were “my peers” … and by THAT standard, I must be a monster, considering what said alleged ‘peers’ were. I think I might prefer Gag Halfrunt’s description of Zaphod Beeblebrox, “He’s just zis guy, you know?”

      Of course, if “monster” means undesirables (salescreatures, telespammers, auto-play enablers, etc.) avoid me, then “monster” I will cheerfully be.

    • This is my #1 issue with Batman as a character. I mean, look, I love Batman, he’s freaking awesome with the gadgets and all, but that whole ‘no killing’ rule?

      Someone needs to sit that man down and show him just HOW MANY PEOPLE HAVE DIED because he refuses to kill, say, the Joker. Or the Penguin. Or any number of his other villains that he self-righteously locks up in Arkham or prison…until the next time they escape.

      And that’s just people who have died. That’s not counting people who have been maimed or otherwise had their lives wrecked because those psychos are still alive.

      Of course, from what I can tell, Batman in the early days DID kill bad guys. And then the Comics Authority Code came into being, because that one dude had a hissy fit about how ‘corrupting’ comics were to Young People ™.

      • “Truman killed 200,000!”

        “Yes. And thereby saved millions.”

        Perhaps billions as people have been Very Carefully NOT nuking each other for the last few decades.

        • “people have been Very Carefully NOT nuking each other for the last few decades.”

          Which, in some senses, is a bit of a pity. Because the loons in charge of Iran (for example) don’t believe that Israel will nuke them if they nuke Israel. None of the despised Wester societies has the balls, or so the Islamofool unreasoning goes.

          And Israel with TOTALLY nuke Iran if Iran nukes Israel. They will nuke Iran is they think Iran is ABOUT to nuke Israel.

          I have seen no evidence in history that any of the Islamic and/or Arabic countries have grasped the message that unless you want life to get REALLY unpleasant, you don’t back the descendants of death camp survivors into a corner. Because they will f*cking eat you alive.

          • Is real will nuke more than Iran. I suspect they will settle old scores on the way out.

            The effects on lower Eqypt of a well placed, shaped nuclear weapon on the Aswan Dan is something I do not want to learn.

            • After the Islamic/Arabic bullsh*t that we have put up with in my lifetime, I wouldn’t cry if Israel turned the entire Arabian Peninsula into a large sheet of faintly glowing glass, and then got creative.

          • Pakistan likewise. I recall a Nat Geo article (before they went fully off the Deep End, so late 1980s-early 1990s) talking about the absolute shock some Pakistani military personnel and government types had when they visited a museum in Hiroshima and saw what the A-bomb could do. It had never occurred to them exactly why the USSR and USA were so touchy about anyone else having one, other than power politics. Didn’t make a long-lasting impression, but it still shocked them.

          • rightasusual2003gmailcom

            In a few more generations, they will. Because, the horror and determination will have receded, the Leftists so prevalent in Israel will have indoctrinated the young, and they will fall for that twaddle.

            • It’s rather surprise it hasn’t happened yet. I do recall the musing if not prediction that as Hiroshima and Nagasaki faded from living memory the probability of someone popping a nuke for other than testing/showing off would rise significantly.

            • A debatable notion. The Israelis have the dubious benefit of actually being in a position where almost all of their surrounding neighbors want them dead. As a result, leftists in Israel are not nearly as insulated from how the real world works as American leftists are.

      • Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard

        Sorry, in a sane world the Joker would have been executed years ago and likely the same for the other villains “locked up” in Arkham.

        Just as we shouldn’t have police who allowed to “kill any criminal they want”, we shouldn’t have a vigilante going around “killing any criminal that they want to kill”.

        • BobtheRegisterredFool

          Yeah, but the superhero genre as a whole has evolved in ways inconsistent with a sane world.

          • Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard

            The comic book super-hero world at least.

            The Wearing The Cape series is somewhat sane regarding how super-heroes would operate in a real world setting.

            Of course, it’s a universe where a character believes she’s a fictional person and may be correct. 😉

        • In a sane world, Lex Luthor would be locked up by somebody for indulging his hobby of annoying a being capable of punching a battleship to death with his eyelids.

          Nothing about any comic book world makes a lick of goddamned sense. And the minute you stat analyzing it, you kill it.

          Never mind that feral children never adapt to human society. Just read the F*cking JUNGLE BOOKS and ‘In The Rukh’, and enjoy the myth.

        • Paul, in case you haven’t noticed…. we don’t live in a sane world.

          • Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard

            Sadly true and of course in a sane world lunatics like the Joker wouldn’t exist. 😈

            More seriously, the Joker is not “Legally Insane” and there would be very few in the Real World decades ago who would/could prevent his execution.

            Of course, it is the idiot writers who “prevent” Joker from being killed not Batman.

      • Honestly depends on which continuity– the new, gritty batman where the Joker gets a ton of corpses each episode in gruesome ways? Yeah, the “no killing” thing makes no sense.

        The ones where the crimes are quirky thefts? It makes sense.

        • Well, yeah, there is that.

          I always felt that the 90s cartoon series (which I watched faithfully throughout middle school and much of high school) straddled that line. It was a kids’ cartoon, so the body count was…well, it existed, but it wasn’t quite as obvious as looking back with it on adult eyes found it to be.

          • Yeah, even re-watching it now I’m pretty solidly going “Dang, what the heck was wrong with Gotham’s police department? No wonder they needed Batman to do anything and were jacked up, but they can’t even keep the baddies inside?”

            Then I look around at how many crimes can be summarized as “he put them in jail while on parole during year two of his ten year sentence for rape and attempted murder” and want to cry.

            • Oh yeah. I am fascinated with true crime, and one of my favorite podcasts brought up the little problem of several prisons in the US alleviating their ‘overcrowding’ problem by releasing inmates. Because they’d been well behaved in prison, and without reference to their actual crimes. And so a rapist and serial killer was let loose and went on to kill several more. It’s enraging.

              On the one hand, yes, I do believe in redemption. For everyone, even. On the other hand…if one is a proven serial rapist and killer, there’s a point where any redemption done is just gonna have to happen behind bars and in the afterlife, ’cause that person should never see the free light of day again.

      • That reminds me of when I was 15 and watching Battle of the Planets. I wondered why the G-Force team always left the Spectrans alive (unconscious, but alive) when they went into a base. Why leave your enemy alive to come up behind you? Any wonder why went I scribble those early fan fics, I had them leaving bodies behind. ((It would be a few years before I learned that the original series [Science Ninja Gatchaman] had been far more violent. The didn’t make that mistake. Er, yeah, I like the original better))

      • The most likely explanation is that if the Hero kills the Really Grroovvy Bad Guy, the writers have to invent another one.
        Much easier to just keep the first one going.

        My own pet peeve was with “The Last Airbender” Ang’s refusal to kill the Fire Lord throughout the series, but no qualms about setting up minions on both sides for extermination.
        I do like how they chose to end the dilemma, though.

        • Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard

          A little comic history.

          The writers who created the Joker intended him to be a “one-shot-villain” and planned to “kill him off”.

          The editor/publisher liked the Joker thus the Joker didn’t die.

          Mind you, IIRC this was the editor/publisher who first decided that Batman wouldn’t kill.

        • I am dead certain that’s the real reason. And I get it, I do, and when one is on the insanely tight schedules required by comics, it’s a heckuva lot easier to go with a known-and-already-popular villain that your writers can write and your artists already know how to draw in their sleep. But still. It does leave that gaping logic hole…

          • I’ve heard Dick Tracy doesn’t have much in the way of recurring villains for precisely this reason. So, hey, at least not everyone? 😀

            (…never actually read it myself, so can’t confirm.)

            • Dick Tracy also had the advantage of being a newspaper comic? (I dunno, did it ever go full length?)

              The Shadow also does not have this problem. But they make that easy by having most them be more or less faceless organized crime goons. Occasionally with exotic flavoring tossed in on top.

        • That was always the explanation I heard. To which my immediate response was “Then you have to limit his villainy to things that don’t make killing him the only response of a human being.”

    • From a natural standpoint, killing the predator removes it from being a threat. People who visit violence on you and yours are predators, which is why you are morally entitled to kill them. If they are outside your group, their killing will rarely be contested. If they are inside your group, then their killing will be questioned; as their value to the group, should they be rehabilitate-able or controllable, may outweigh the value of killing them. Our various legal systems arose to supposedly make those determinations. Current problems with the U.S. legal system is we don’t exterminate enough of the bad ones, and we do a very bad job (usually due to bias, or greed, but often due to being dirt stupid) of sorting out which are the bad ones and which are the keepers.

      • Also, since there is no effective penalty for railroading somebody to prop up your conviction percentages, we get the wrong person far to goddamned often.

        We really need to change thigs so that if you surpress evidence or otherwise cheat to convict a man of a capitol crime, and get found out, you go on trial for conspiracy to commit murder.

        • You are sooooo right. The accuser and the prosecutor ought to be subjected to the maximum penalty for whatever crime they falsely accuse someone of.

          • Not subjected willy-nilly. Tried, but at a comparable level of penalty.

          • Agreed, with the proviso that only a knowingly false accusation should be thus punished. And there would have to be proof to the same level (beyond reasonable doubt) that the accuser knew the accusation to be false. In other words, due process would have to protect the accuser-turned-defendant as well. As for prosecutors, the burden of proof should be slightly less: instead of proving that they knew the accusation to be false, the standard should be that if they were negligent in their duty to figure out the truth of their accusation (i.e., didn’t pursue an obvious line of evidence that would have exonerated the defendant), then they would suffer the penalty.

            The idea behind both of these standards is to punish liars or overzealous prosecutors, while not punishing people who made an honest mistake. (The witness who genuinely believed in his/her story, but mistook the defendant for his brother or something). If a false accusation made in good faith (or worse, an accusation that couldn’t be proven true) got punished harshly, you’d end up with people afraid to bring charges against anyone with a good lawyer, and organized crime would get too powerful.

            • I don’t have a big problem with lawyers that are defending their client who they know is guilty; they’re doing their job. I only wish there were some mechanism where after they’ve successfully done so, that they can warn the rest of us that we found them not guilty…unwisely.

            • The “evidence of malice” standard?

        • Oh, yes please. People make mistakes, to be sure, but there is *no* excuse for deliberately going after someone who is innocent of the crime in question just so you don’t end up looking bad. Or because lazy, or whatever.


      • A single witness shall not suffice against a person for any crime or for any wrong in connection with any offense that he has committed. Only on the evidence of two witnesses or of three witnesses shall a charge be established. If a malicious witness arises to accuse a person of wrongdoing, then both parties to the dispute shall appear before the Lord , before the priests and the judges who are in office in those days. The judges shall inquire diligently, and if the witness is a false witness and has accused his brother falsely, then you shall do to him as he had meant to do to his brother. So you shall purge the evil from your midst. And the rest shall hear and fear, and shall never again commit any such evil among you. Your eye shall not pity. It shall be life for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot.
        Deuteronomy 19:15‭-‬21 ESV

        Sounds perfectly reasonable to me.

  9. Speaking of the bonobo. What is most important to remember is that bonobos don’t say “no”. And hey, if you never say “no” you can’t be raped, can you.

    The lauding of the fabulous society without jealousy or violence of bonobos is one of my, dare I say, TRIGGERS. Omg.

    • Makes you wonder if chimps are the ones who said, “no”.

    • Donald Campbell

      First, I was told bonobos were a wonderful peaceful matriarchal society that used sex as a reward for social cohesion.
      Then further research showed bonobo males were the most efficient predators in the world [energy expended for calories killed].
      Further research showed the free sex was the fee charged for the females and their children to get meat.
      Finally it was shown that bonobo males were efficient at killing other nearby groups to expand their territory.
      Not quite the utopia they expected.

      • Kind of like Marge Meade’s sloppy sociological studies of South Pacific tribes. Looks like a free love peaceful paradise at first… until you stay long enough to find the incredible amounts of violence.

        • To her credit, Ms. Meade disowned that early work, saying it was effectively juvenilia, and seriously flawed, and that further the feministas of the day were ‘quoting’ it as saying things she explicitly DID NOT say.

          Needless to say, nobody on the Left paid anyattention.

          • There’s a lot of rubbish the Left believes that was cutting edge science at one point, then seriously superseded not long after. Freudian psychoanalysis is another.

        • One of the more chilling bits from “War Before Civilization” is the South Seas Islands tradition of clubbing a dead enemy until all their bones are broken then wearing the corpse like a cape.

      • Depends on your definition of efficiency.

        Get a bunch of Sapiens each contributing a trivial amount, and your most efficient killer is the B-52 bombardier who puts down his coffee cup and starts flipping switches…

  10. At one point our eldest was scared of people who don’t wear glasses.

    And she screamed on meeting one of my bearded uncles when he wasn’t wearing a hat- apparently pretty common, because he’s bald. As he put it, tothe kids, his head was on upside down.

    • My son was very iffy around men without beards. (Both my father and my husband have beards.) Took going to church for several months with men with no beards for him to realize it was normal.

      • Nope. Beards are the norm. It requires work, and occasional pain, for men to not be bearded; and hence, is an artificial condition.

        • In this case ‘normal’ means ‘sufficiently common and/or familiar as not to cause alarm.’

          • Aw poo. If you’re going to go that way, then we’ll have to establish that normal is either bearded or shaven, and dependent on which group is larger in the population in question. I’m used to normal being within 1 standard deviation from the mean, but that’s just at work. On the other hand, what constitutes bearded? A week’s worth of scruffiness, or going totally ZZ Top? https://youtu.be/7wRHBLwpASw

    • Hell, baby brother had an absolute FIT when mom and I cut our hair short about the same time (for reference, baby brother is seventeen years younger than me, so I was, in essence, a second mom-presence in his infant-definitions). Granted, that was in part because we took away his ‘handle’ when he was being fed, but.

      And I have seen babies freak the hell out at dad and his beard. Or his lack of beard. (Older-but-still-very-little kids tend to default to “looks like Santa”, but then get very leery if he shaves.)

      I had one baby freak out about my hair color. (I’m a redhead, of the ‘vividly copper’ variety. I was in a country with few-to-no actual redheads.)

      It isn’t racism, it’s “Looks different to what I’m accustomed to.” Can also translate to “feels different” and probably even “smells/sounds different.”

      I saw one video where a baby met his father’s identical twin and freaked right the hell out because “LOOKS EXACTLY LIKE BUT ISN’T”

      • BobtheRegisterredFool

        I’ve been deeply unnerved at my mother getting a haircut as recently as my twenties. Okay, I really, really, really like things to be the same.

        • I got unnerved by getting my own hair colored ever so slightly red. For about a week I’d startle at the first glance in a mirror because it was not-me. (I’m sure if I colored my hair regularly that I’d get used to the changes.)

          • rightasusual2003gmailcom

            My nephew was in Japan, when in the Navy. He’s 6’5″, and red-headed – a flaming color. He was a standout in that society.
            He sent a picture to his mom of him in the middle of a lot of Japanese, labeled, “Where’s PJ?”

      • MomRed was in Japan in the early 1970s (while Dad was in the Navy). She was standing at a street corner waiting for traffic and a school bus pulled up. Dad was very amused as the kids lowered the windows and carefully petted Mom’s (then red) hair without her noticing it.

        • That’s actually kind of adorable. (And if I ever go to Japan, will keep this in mind. My hair color was startling just in Eastern Europe, heh.)

          • I had a friend in Japan, my tour there: she was one of those copper-redheads, and she and her hubs had a pair of adorable toddler and kindergarten-age kids with hair exactly the color of a polished copper saucepan. They had Japanese people lining up to take pictures of their kids whenever they went out. I myself had a baby-san with blue eyes and fair hair, which was so unusual in Northern Japan as to attract attention in supermarket check-out lines. And once, when I was pushing her in her stroller up Misawa City’s main street, there was a schoolboy who was looking so intently at her as he walked up the street that he collided square-on with a support post holding up the porch over the shop we were walking past.

            • *grin*

              You know, I can kind of shift my mind over– thank you, fantasy/scifi!– and “see” how that would be.

              There’s a lady I’ve seen with honest to heaven peacock inspired hair. The blue is a bit more periwinkle than a peacock’s, and the green isn’t actually iridescent, but you look at it and go “Wow! Peacock hair!”

              Imagine seeing that in a situation where you’d know it wasn’t a really good dye job.

              I’d be looky-loo, too!

              • I totally stare at awesome dye jobs. I haven’t got the guts to do that to my own hair (in part because I really, really don’t want to bleach it, and I love my natural color), but I admire other people’s.

            • When Dad was stationed in Europe, sometimes the Japanese tourists would take pictures of me and my sister. We were tow-headed.

              • Japansee businessmen at Kings Island really wanted a picture of themselves with my teenage friend with the long blonde hair, and teenage me with long brown hair and glasses. Nice guys, not skeevy.

            • We used to call that street “Greenpole Street” back in the 90s.

        • We’re nordic and as blond as you’d expect. My sister went to Bejing for a band thing and had people want to touch her hair. My brother had the same experience in Mexico City but was too flustered to let the girls who asked touch it.

    • My husband has a tendency to grow out a beard and then shave, or grow out his hair a couple of inches and then buzz it, on a pretty regular basis, so our little one has had occasion to get used to changes in appearance.

      ….But one time recently, she looked at him and asked if he could go put his hair back on. I might have cracked up a lot.

  11. Even suppose the achievement of a Perfectly Peaceful Humanity… it would not last a generation. As per yesterday’s post, girls would realize they could weaponize boys… and there goes peace in any (and no) time.

    (…mutterings of “and they call my kind monsters…”)

  12. There is one example that covers all. The Boys fight. It was well know forever. A fight between Boys for Boys reasons. Normally a quick fight and then the Boys went back to playing or whatever. There were RULES. They were past down from Boys to younger Boys since whenever.
    It was how Boys dealt with bullies. Everyone including the teachers KNEW who the Bullies were (as they still do but they can’t SAY that). When the Bully got pounded on, nothing happened but the Bully pulled back.

    Then the Libs took over the schools and taught that there is NEVER EVER any reason to fight and started punishing BOTH for fighting. That was when Boys fights changed. The first time I realized this was a story from Dallas. Two teenagers had a fight the fight ended when one boy tried to gouge out the eyes of the other. Yes, it said gouge. There were no longer any Rules to a Boys Fight. They had not been taught. It is WRONG to fight therefor if you fight there are no rules.

    Boys no longer learn that there are LEVELS of permitted violence. Violence to Girls – NEVER, Boys fight – no lasting harm, personal or protection of others danger much higher, against home invasion or other major deadly stuff – deadly violence. Lib Teaching violence is NEVER acceptable, NEVER!

    And we wonder why Soy Boys are a thing.

    If you have a Boy or a Girl YOU must teach them the Levels of acceptable violence. “Violence is NEVER acceptable” means that they don’t fight back if someone tried to take them. You MUST teach them that there are times when Violence is not only acceptable BUT REQUIRED!!!!

    • I found it telling that in my mother’s horror stories of the bullies that left scars on her childhood…it was girls. And granted, they left her physically alone after she pounded one into the ground for attacking her brother. But alas, they were girls…which meant there were NO rules, and so the cutting continued, but with words and social manipulation.

      Girl bullies are Evil Incarnate. There is NOTHING any boy out there has got on them in terms of sheer damage caused. And the vast majority of the time, the girl bullies Get Away With It. Pisses me off, that does.

      (And that is what is pissing me off with this Kavanaugh thing. Women I would otherwise classify as mostly-sane are reacting like these accusations are actual rape. And even if they were true…no, sorry, that’s not rape. That’s not really even assault. And no, that’s not me saying “boys will be boys” that’s me saying “That is someone acting like a twit, to be sure, but that is not something you ruin a person’s life over.” And some of these women even have sons, for crying out loud. HOW do they not see the problem here?)

      • Latest claim-
        a college age woman was going to parties where high school Judge K and that Judge guy were setting up rape trains by spiking the punch, kept going, and was eventually a rape victim from it.

        Wonder if Judge’s lawyer is drooling right now, because that is solid coocoo for coco puffs, right there.

        • BobtheRegisterredFool

          Moe Lane has temporarily come out of retirement from politics over this. (Catholic, currently lives in Maryland, drank a lot when he was younger.)

          I’m tempted to see if I could get him and Sarah on board with him doing a guest post here on this.

          Despite my questions yesterday, reversing suffrage is probably not a reasonable response to this.

          There is an almost sound argument that Title IX has lead to some unreasonable expectations on the part of the accusers. That they simply had not realized the level of proof that is appropriate to the venue. That in absence of these issues being decided on campus under the current implementation of Title IX, the accusers would have made their accusations and brought substantive evidence in a time frame that matches that of a normal legal proceeding.

          Reversing women’s suffrage is the more effective trolling point, but repeal of Title IX is perhaps a more productive discussion. That said, in the current situation such a repeal would also be an ugly mess.

          • Likely more effective would be to enforce Title IX.

            Deciding someone is guilty, or not, based on their sex, is sex discrimination.

            Canceling something because those involved are male, is sex discrimination.

            There is NOTHING HERE that says jack all of “but this only works if girls gain from it.”

            No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.

          • Donald Campbell

            I don’t think it is Title IX in itself, but the ‘Dear Colleague’ implementation. First, males are now a minority on campus. No matter how much the Left wants to make it so, women’s field hockey will never rival men’s football for money and alumni donations. Sexual harassment, sexual assault, rape. Three different things. The first can be handled by the college, the last one must be handled by civil police/sheriff/DA, middle one [like two drunks groping] tricky.

          • I do wonder how much of the “I’ll testify if the following demands are met” games from the first accuser is due to the fact that she’s an academic. I’m sure that most of it is just stalling, but I do wonder if spending all of her time on a college campus has convinced her that OF COURSE the “survivor” gets to decide who investigates a claim and to what extent.

        • That sounds like a truly mangled mash of the last two claims, one was college student, college party where he was drunk and supposedly exposed himself (and the investigations already done did include college, apparently, and found nothing) and what is now being explained as a 4Chan operation involving Stormy Daniel’s lawyer (the rape train thing.) The story that the lawyer came up with didn’t pass a smell test (really, no one but him ever got told about the rape trains?) but apparently he’s got that medical condition where you can’t smell. He’s also disabled his Twitter.

        • This is all bearing a deep resemblance to the crap that occurred in the Salem Witch Trials: a handful of disturbed/hysterical/ambitious/whatever women flinging accusations without any *actual* evidence, and being believed by the mob.

          Hell, probably there was more actual evidence in the Salem Witch Trials.

          Look, I get the whole “many of us get harassed and/or assaulted in some form or another in our lives” and that it’s deeply irritating at best, and can be damaging or life-shattering. I was stalked in sixth grade, for crying out loud. Threatened, the whole nine yards. And was told by adults-in-authority that it was probably my fault. So yeah, that left some scars in my interpersonal dealings with other young men for years after (more in the “I was fine talking to them and being friends, but could not parse anything else” than any kind of man-hating or such. And that, frankly, was on me, not them.)

          But would I now go after that boy who stalked me and try to wreck his life? No. For one thing, I was aware even then that that level of behavior was NOT the sign of a mentally healthy person. So even then, I was aware that whatever was going on probably had nothing to do with me (those idiot counselors’ assertions notwithstanding), and more to do with whatever widget in his head had gone “sproing.” And even if it *had* escalated worse than it had, or if he was doing it because he was a horrible person and not absolutely nuts…he was a freaking *kid*. And if he had managed to emerge from all of that and never do it again, why on this green earth would I now try to wreck that?!

          (And I’m not saying kids can’t commit awful crimes, or that they shouldn’t be held responsible for them, but…there’s a damn good reason that there aren’t all that many cases where a juvenile is tried as an adult. Because kids–especially teenagers–are freaking idiots who do stupid things. Even criminally stupid things.)

          On a lesser level…would I try and ruin the life of the asshole in high school who groped me? No. Seriously, grabbing my ass is rude and obnoxious and yes, wrong…but we aren’t talking an unforgiveable sin here. Now, if I could transplant my chutzpah/knowhow as an adult briefly to the shocked fourteen year old I was (this was in passing in a hall at school), I’d have decked the little asshat and taken the detention for it. (And did deck a man, in my twenties, for grabbing a woman who was with me.)

          But if I even knew that grabby twerp’s name today, and found out he was up for some important position, my response would be “Well, I hope he outgrew being an asshat” and leave it at that.

          *coughs* Well, that was a bit more than I intended to write, heh.

          • *wags hand* Once you really look at the economics of the Salem vs Old Salem trials, and the Indian attack fears that had everyone in that colony waiting for enemies to burst out of the woods at any moment, the hysteria makes a sort of sense. This stuff? Pure Kafka, Mao, and Stalin.

            • BobtheRegisterredFool

              Also, the Puritans were way overconfident in their ability to build a lasting new society, and became disturbed by their failure. A first generation picked for personality traits will not necessarily replicate those traits in future generations.

              • Yah. I’ve often said, the Puritan’s big problem was that they tried to build something like a monastic community, but didn’t want to admit that monastic communities only work if you *want* to be there.

            • rightasusual2003gmailcom

              Well, they ARE terrified. They are seeing their carefully constructed world completely collapse. It has to be demoralizing.
              The Dem ship is the Titanic – it couldn’t sink, until it did. And, there aren’t enough lifeboats – some of them are going to be out of work for a LONG time.
              Kinda explains their actions – they are resorting to crotch-kicking, trying to get onto those lifeboats.

              • The trick will be sinking the lifeboats. My goal is for the last Leftist in the United States to be a stuffed exhibit in the Smithsonian.

                • The thing they don’t get and will never get is that WE’ve BURNED our boats. This is the last place on Earth for us; the last we can fight for. We have nowhere else to go. They come and badger us here, they’re gonna get honeybadgers. Because we can’t go anywhere else.

          • The problem with comparing anythin g to the Salem Witch Trials is that the vast majority of people who know anything about them other than their use as a trope know about them from THE CRUCIBLE, a play that was written less as an accurate historical drama than as a secular allegory for the Hollywood blacklist, the deliberations of the HUAC, and the career of Joe Mccarthy. The problem with that is that, while McCarthy’s accusations were largely hot air (and when they weren’t it was probably accidental) and the HUAC’s work hit or miss, the fact remains that there were Communist agents in the United States, and in the federal government, and most if not all of the blacklist ‘victims’ were avowed Communists, many of who got ‘named’ because they were playing the same kind of ‘you may be a member, but you are guilty of wrongthink’ menal torture games the Left plays to this day.

            People in Hollywood got sick of them and their Stalinism, amd named them to various Authorities.

            THE CRUCIBLE is based firmly on the idea that there are no witches, with the lesson being that there were no Communists in Hollywood (or anywhere else they were being searched for). And that is so much bilge.

            Now, any benefit International Communism gained from the machinations of the blacklisters is probably piffling. But they weren’t innocent, any more than any other Communist or Socialist is innocent.

            • I picked up a kindle book a few years ago that is a reprint of an 18th/19th century grimoire that was very popular in Pensylvania and other former original colonies for many years. (It’s a hoot to read–quite the blend of common sense remedies/advice with some truly out there spells/rituals that probably killed or at least made very ill a number of people. An astonishing number involve urine or heavy metals, and the consumption or application thereof…) Something that few of us fail to realize today, almost, what, two centuries into the ‘age of reason’, is just *how* prevalent belief in magic and so on really was through most of human history (and still is, in chunks of the world today). It was a normal and natural then as acknowledgement of our (that is, Western society) basic scientific principles is now, and everyone did it.

              So were people hexing one another in Salem? Probably. I mean, the Puritans were outliers in that they apparently really frowned on what everyone else did as a matter of course in regards to magic…but that’s also a perception filtered through a few centuries of history. I’d lay good odds that the average Puritan was no more immune to all those little spells and rituals that his or her forebears had made use of, and probably more than a few were doing it at least on the sly. And most of the time, those things were totally harmless and ignored…right up until Goody Williams’ cow actually DID get sick and die, and she was looking for someone to blame for it.

              (If anyone is interested, the grimoire is titled “The Long Lost Friend.” It really is a fascinating read.)

              • The one that was the source for half the magic in the Silver John books? (Albertus Magnus supplying much of the rest)

              • And come to think of it, that kind of thing was all through the ALVIN MAKER books, too.

                Wonder how munch of the Mormon problems came from that. If that kind of thinking was still that prevalent in rural America that late, hunting down polygamous warlocks might have made a certain amount of sense…

            • *Snickers* The year we did that in high school, the teacher explained it was written to be about that; I raised my hand and pointed out that there weren’t witches, but according to the Russians there were Soviet agents involved.

              I was still kinda pissed she’d flatly ignored my pointing out that, according to the USSR’s then-newly-revealed documents, the Rosenbergs were not total innocents who’d been victimized by Evil Anti-Communists.

          • My eyes rolled right out of my head and got lost in the gutter of Facebbok today when I saw someone–in all sincerity– post that “white dudes facing the consequences of their asshole behavior” weren’t allowed to use the terms “witch hunt” to “lynch mob” because they were appropriating the violence visited on women and POC.

            • The problem with comments like that is fairly simple: the person making them is simply assuming that the accused actually engaged in behavior that justified such consequences.

              • Given the prevalence of the meme showing Emmet Till or shots of the “To Kill a Mockingbird” film, you’d think people would *understand* why the term “lynch mob” is completely appropriate in this context.

              • Nah. Just that because of their class status as a subhuman they don’t get to be considered innocent

            • Such comments demonstrate how the “victimhood points” mentality renders people unable to think logically. That commenter was afraid of white people being able to score victimhood points, and therefore no longer being legitimate targets for his/her hate. And thus, the convoluted
              and illogical explanation involving “appropriation”.

            • One of the people executed at Salem was a man.
              One doesn’t know whether to be staggered at their ignorance, or just angry.
              These days I’m angry.

          • SheSellsSeashells

            Somebody groped my sainted mother in high school (mid-60s). By a lucky coincidence he was off-balance when she turned around and slapped him; the combination was enough that she sent him into the lockers hard enough to leave a dent.

            Personally, I consider that adequate and appropriate retaliation.

          • And you have to remember what witches were to those people. Witches were like Satan’s Saints. Just like God’s Saints except they were given power from Satan. They were EVIL and dangerous beyond belief, doing evil just because they could for no reason. ETC.
            No wonder the Bible said not to suffer a witch to live.

            If YOU believed that someone was Satan’s Saint, would YOU ignore them??


            • “Three hundred years ago people in England were putting witches to death. Was that what you call the ‘Rule of Human Nature or Right Conduct?’ But surely the reason we do not execute witches is that we do not believe there are such things. If we did—if we really thought that there were people going about who had sold themselves to the devil and received supernatural powers from him in return and were using these powers to kill their neighbours or drive them mad or bring bad weather—surely we would all agree that if anyone deserved the death penalty, then these filthy quislings did? There is no difference of moral principle here: the difference is simply about matter of fact. It may be a great advance in knowledge not to believe in witches: there is no moral advance in not executing them when you do not think they are there. You would not call a man humane for ceasing to set mousetraps if he did so because he believed there were no mice in the house.”

              C. S. Lewis
              MERE CHRISTIANITY

            • Heck, even if you believed someone wanted to be such– and there were people who very, very much wanted it.

              Icky.

        • Ford’s claim is at least believable in the “she perceived events that way as a 15 year old and is convinced 36 years later that it was him” sense.

          Coocoo for Coco Puffs, on the other hand…

          I can not comprehend how the “resistance” thinks this is going to help their case or strengthen the idea of a blue wave. It requires believing three impossible things before breakfast beginning with how many FBI back ground investigations that found no suggestion of it?

          • Seriously, even folks who think the FBI would have trouble finding a boink in a brothel are going to have trouble believing that there was a multi-year long gang rape ring being run by teenage boys in a rich area which targeted local girls….and the FBI missed it. Six times.

            • BobtheRegisterredFool

              Well, college girl going to highschool parties, believing that such was happening, and doing nothing would make sense to a woman who would seek more vulnerable prey in younger cohorts, and who would enjoy the idea of bad stuff happening to other girls. As for the other claims, someone who believes that the ‘lots of rapes’ model of college is correct, or who thinks the entire United States is like Hollywood might find them plausible.

              Federal investigators would have had daughters at these schools. Even if, say, the FBI is in practice an organization for concealing crimes, some of the fathers would have done something about it. There are women who do not understand men well enough to realize this.

              • SheSellsSeashells

                I saw a Twitter thread by an alphabet-soup type that made a moderate amount of sense on the “why did she KEEP going to parties with gang rapes?” front; the Alphabet’s contention was that at that time you didn’t think of it as “danger of rape”; you thought of it as “keep a close eye on your drink”. I found it maybe-a-little plausible, *if* elite private schools actually WERE the way they’re frequently portrayed. (Wouldn’t know; my school was private but not remotely elite, and I was never a party type).

                But believe that common knowledge of that sort escaped multiple FBI background checks? Not hardly. Believe that the accusation wasn’t invented out of desperation and a ticking clock? BWAHAHAnope.

            • “Seriously, even folks who think the FBI would have trouble finding a boink in a brothel are going to have trouble believing that there was a multi-year long gang rape ring being run by teenage boys in a rich area which targeted local girls….and the FBI missed it. Six times.”

              Hey, I figured it out! (Or had it explained to me, same difference.)

              See, none of the girls *realized they’d been raped* and therefore none of them told anyone, certainly not their families.

              Now I certainly understand how someone blames themselves (like Broaddrick questioned herself for agreeing that Bill should come to her room to talk), but she told people and it was definitely that she was raped but maybe it was her fault somehow and she didn’t want to report it to anyone. But no one in a high school told a friend? Everyone kept going to the parties? It’s not even that the existence of drinking and sex parties is unbelievable, it’s the silence that’s unbelievable.

          • Flake appears to be using it as an excuse to not vote for Kavanaugh. He’s not running for reelection, and Ace’s sidebar mentions that he’s been spotted talking to news media organizations (Fox is not one of the ones listed). Corker is apparently indecisive. And Murkowski has moved from a solid yes, to maybe. I think Collins is still in the yes column, though. If so, then I suspect the rather public attempt to bribe her got her ticked off.

            So yeah, the strategy might be working at least in the short term.

            • Bribe, blackmail… it’s all more or less the same thing.

              • Not in the case of Collins. A group of people made a *very* public attempt to change her vote to No by offering her the proceeds of a GoFundMe campaign if she did so.

                • And why they aren’t facing charges is a mystery.

                  • Because they didn’t word it like that. Instead, they worded it “We have / plan to have $xxx,xxx after a GoFundMe. If you vote wrong we’ll give it to whoever your opponent is.” She wasn’t going to get it in any case, and you can’t prevent someone from donating to your political opponent.

        • Yet Democrats are running with it and the press is screaming “credible” about it.

          What was that bit about a lie repeated often enough?

          • “Credible” seems to mean approximately “I can support this slow down without a bit of personal risk.”

          • Just like the news is touting the Letters saying she told the about it years ago (no mention of BK) as CONFIRMATION of her story. Big time BS.

        • Nah. He’ll be termed a public person and even if the accusation was not only out of whole cloth but included falsified evidence it would be shrugged away. He’s not of the superior class, you see. He isn’t due any rights according to the US legal system.

          • They might be able to build it off of him having written a book, but I sure wouldn’t take the bet.

            • George Zimmerman was ruled a public figure when he sued nbc for cutting the 911 clip to edit out the dispatch question. A sitting circuit court, nominated for supreme will be ruled such. Probably even without the venue shopping that will happen.

              • Not Judge K, the guy whose last name is Judge. He was accused of helping Judge K. run the rape ring.

                • Ah. Still doubt for same reason. Nonliberals have no rights in the United States

                  • So they want to insist.

                    /sigh

                    Why is it that folks whose hobby horse includes the court getting it wrong too often in cases where the court HAS to be involved get so hot to make it so that EVERYBODY has to go through the court?

                    • Because the thought is that the courts have been properly reformed. I.e. now they rule on your place in the social hierarchy. They prefer title ix style tribunals though.

                      Eventually just get to summary execution on the streets if a higher caste says you did something. We already have destroyed presumption of innocence with all the trial by media

              • For what little it’s worth, Zimmerman’s “public figure” status was from…publicly arguing AGAINST a cop who assaulted a (black) homeless guy.

                /sigh

      • Girls who are bullies are one of the reasons my youngest is so messed up.

      • You know, even supposing that Kavanaugh actually was at a party and dragged a girl into a bedroom and groped her; it’s unlikely that he’d have ever been charged, much less convicted. Furthermore, as a minor, his records would have been sealed and expunged when he turned 18. Ergo, the Democrats are making a big to do about nothing; proving there’s nothing wrong with Kavanaugh other than he is a conservative nominated by Trump.

        • I’m also baffled by the idea that such behavior, gross though it is, is somehow an Unforgiveable Sin from which one can never return. (and any son or sibling of mine I caught behaving like that would be in for one hell of an ass chewing, and if a son, some severe re-education on What Is and Is Not Acceptable Behavior For the Civlized)

          I’m also sick unto death of the attitude that stating “going and getting blind drunk–*especially* when you are a freaking minor–can and frequently does have unpleasant consequences up to and including assault/rape” is unacceptable and considered ‘victim blaming.’ Actions have consequences, and claiming that a human being (be they male or female) doesn’t bear responsibility when stupid behavior = unwanted consequences is infantilizing in the extreme.

          • I’m also baffled by the idea that such behavior, gross though it is, is somehow an Unforgiveable Sin from which one can never return.

            It falls under the “Any Stick Is Good Enough to Beat Him With” rule

        • And like always you have to ask. Is BK so squeaky clean that with a second by second review of his life THIS is the BEST they can come up with???? If that is true he is not only good enough to be a SC judge he is GOOD enough to be a SAINT.

      • They see the problem, but it helps them attain their goal of attacking Trump.

    • BobtheRegisterredFool

      In fairness, at one place and time on the American frontier, when men fought they could opt out of permitting eye gouging, but it was unmanly to do so. Cultural differences are not necessarily wrong.

      • Polliwog the 'Ette

        My great-grandfather popped a guy’s eye out. It was that or kill him, the guy attacked him, and g-grandpa was a preacher and didn’t want to have to kill him. Apparently it was enough to get the guy to leave him alone after that.

    • I keep waiting for the parents of some kid who defended himself and got suspended to go to court and try to establish that school policy does not and cannot supersede civil rights, including tha natural right to self defense.

      I don’t know where that would go, but it would be fascinating to find out.

      • FIRE (Foundation for Individual Rights in Education) has been taking colleges to court and winning. Look them up.

    • yes, they have spent forty years teaching kids that self-defense is never acceptable, and they wonder why antifa thugs are surprised when someone fights back (yes, I *do* think the two are linked)

      • /agree

        “If I hit, they can’t hit back or they’ll be punished– and if they try to get me in trouble for hitting them, I’ll just say they hit me!”

        They’re trained that the worst outcome of cheating is that you and the victim are treated the same.

  13. Yep. The people who accuse conservatives of “science denial” (particularly when it comes to evolution) make assumptions and claims that are so MUCH in denial of science and evolutionary theory that it staggers the mind if you think about it too much.

    Evolution requires conflict, or there’s no NEED for evolution. It can be conflict against the environment, or it can be conflict against other creatures, or both. Now, granted, some things engage in this conflict in ways that do not LOOK violent (plants spreading multitudes of seeds, insects laying multitudes of eggs, for example), but still, those will take resources from other plants and animals. But many other things do engage in violence, particularly predators. And prey engages in violence, even if it’s only to defend itself from predators (though they often get violent with each other, especially around breeding time).

    So, humans climbed to the top of this heap of conflict, and we don’t automatically know violence? I’m sorry, but for a group that is largely populated by atheists, that’s hilarious. Because for humans to be that way, they would not only have had to have been created, and NOT evolved, they would also have to be influenced from the outside in order for there to BE violence among humans. So, basically, it would require an Eden story, except with the presumption that, if we could just keep from teaching children violence, humans would go back to being perfect.

  14. Without disagreeing with anything you’ve said I feel you may have been a bit unfair to old R&H here.

    Nobody needs to be taught to hate and fear the stranger when they’re too young to protect themselves from danger. What does get taught is the value scheme by which we determine what types of strangers may be considered more or less dangerous, and the logic system by which we assess evidence for that danger. Nobody needs to be taught how to fight war; we do need to be taught whom it’s appropriate to fight wars against, and when, and why. And both those teachings can, sadly, be very unjustly distorted. Lots of kids are taught to fear people they’ve never actually met based on reported evidence they’ve never personally verified.

    Even in WW2 it was perfectly appropriate to think, “This man looks Japanese and he’s in a Japanese military uniform, he’s therefore most likely going to try to kill me,” but not “This man looks Japanese, and he’s talking perfect Fresno-accented English and wearing an Elvis T-shirt; he’s therefore most likely to be a spy for Hirohito and we need to lock him and his family up.”

      • *smh* Wow. Reading that, I feel shocked by their betrayal.

        Now I do understand why everyone at the time understood the necessity of the internment…

        • It makes things make a lot more sense, for sure.

          Makes me wonder why the only time I heard about it, was listening to a radio show by a guy who grew up in Hawaii.

        • From the story, it’s all pretty awful but easy enough to convince someone (or a few someones) that Japanese victory was inevitable and that they’d better decide to be on the winning side or they would be the first ones up against the wall when it was over.

          • Japanese. You’d wish for a wall waaaaay before you were dead.

          • they’d better decide to be on the winning side or they would be the first ones up against the wall

            See… that’s why “Shoot, Shovel, Shutup” was invented.

            Kill this pilot, put him in the cockpit of his plane, push it off a cliff (if needed).

            In the event that the pilot was right and the Japanese do take over… “Pilot? What pilot? Oh the pilot of the plane over there? We tried, but couldn’t get to him. Besides who could survive a crash like that? Sure, we’ll swear fealty to the Emperor. We’d be happy to manage this island for you too. We know the people here, we can keep them from causing trouble.”

            And maybe it wouldn’t work if more pilots landed there, but at the moment you only have one.

    • BobtheRegisterredFool

      Standards for internment in the continental US were heavily racist
      Democrat bullshit. It was fairly justified in Hawaii.

      • Japanese weren’t the only ones interned. Lots of Americans of German and Italian ancestry got sent to camps too. But a statistically smaller proportion, as they were more dispersed and less easily identifiable.

        For that matter, it wasn’t just the Americans doing it. I’ve talked to a number of Canadians who claimed they never heard about the camps in British Columbia.

        • Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard

          IIRC The Canadian camps lasted longer. IE Japanese-Canadians were still being held long after VJ day.

        • Yep – talked to some friends in Fredericksburg, from the German community there. Known Nazi symps, for the most part, but one of the internees in Crystal City was a newly-arrived minister to one of the German-speaking congregations in Fredericksburg. He was a Swiss German-speaker, not all that comfortable in English, and locals kept warning him NOT to lapse into German in public … and he still got interned in Crystal City anyway. Which, in the long run, he didn’t mind too much. He always had a full house in the camp chapel for services on Sundays …

        • Amsel, Matthew

          Not taught in history class.

        • Germans and Italians were interned – but only when there was evidence of individual disloyalty, not because they were of the wrong descent and lived near a coast. Sometimes that evidence was mistaken, but there was a sufficiency of actual sabotage and spying to make it clear that some German and Italian immigrants were disloyal. OTOH, the German-American Bund, the organization that Hitler promoted before the war with the intention of using it to recruit spies and saboteurs, worked better as a way for the majority of German-Americans to keep an eye on each other and try to keep everyone loyal to the US. Or at least reminded of why they had left Germany!

          Sometimes the internees chose to take their families with them, but the only American citizens by birth that were ordered to the camps because of their ancestry were of Japanese descent.

          As for the Japanese-American farmers on a small isolated island that helped a Japanese pilot, you would have to ignore most of the story to take it as evidence of disloyalty by the Japanese-American community. They had not heard about the attack on Pearl Harbor or that there was a war. When that news came out, the majority of them wanted to confine the pilot until American authorities could come and get him, although a few men still wanted to keep him hidden for pickup by a Japanese submarine. Unfortunately, the pilot’s sidearm was the only gun on the island – but finally, the others worked themselves up to where they would charge a gun.

          • . They had not heard about the attack on Pearl Harbor or that there was a war.

            Might want to read it again.

            They heard about it from the pilot himself, heard about it before the attempted murder, and sided with the pilot who was going to kill their neighbors to get his papers back.

      • Not to excuse FDR, who like most Progressives was,a,racist sonofabitch, but there is a certain amount of evidence that the internment was in part done because the government was afraid that if it WASN’T done there would be race riots and mass lynching all up and down the west coast.

        Not that they were tenderly concerned about the lives of the Japanese-A,ericams, but they didn’t need the chaos when they were mobilizing.

    • I am sorry but you are NOT allowed to do that any more. It is EVIL to judge people by profiling. It is perfectly alright to use race, gender, or anything else for goodthink reasons. But to use anything at all for badthink reasons is totally EVIL and Wrong.

      If you walk out your front door and see a Tiger you are to ignore it, it is not hurting you and until it does you cannot judge it. Your new baby sitter has MS13 tattoos, you should not worry or even think that something might go wrong.

      No matter what the facts are, no matter how well documented the dangers are, if you react based on those you are an EVIL RACIST sub human and must be destroyed.

      • Oh, the problem is not profiling. The problem is not profiling enough. It’s not evil to use visible identity characteristics as part of a profile; the evil is when you don’t use anything else. Or use only the most obvious and lazy shorthand examples of them.

        For an example, consider the many black men who have complained of being stopped while driving for the “crime” of “DWB” (i.e., driving while … yanno). Much as I’m sure lots of them have a valid complaint, it still seems extremely likely to me that quite a few of them would not have been stopped if they’d been driving Volvos, wearing a sweater vest or singing along to Carly Rae Jepsen.

        The invidious dishonesty of anti-profiling critics is to presume that the moment identity characteristics become part of a profile, nobody can be trusted to pay attention to anything else in it. Which is just another version of the Left’s primary political maxim: Most people can’t be trusted to make their own decisions.

        • My cousin married a lady who’s family (I think they’re Jewish) immigrated from Uzbekistan when she was an adult. (Her brother had put them all on a waiting list and then ended up going to Israel, as I remember the story.) When their permissions to immigrate to the US finally came through they moved to Minneapolis. Her father got pulled over by cops multiple times until he shaved his beard. Once he shaved it, he didn’t get pulled over.

          Now *maybe* he also learned how to drive better in US traffic, who knows.

          And of course even if there are other elements that cops are noticing and responding to, there can also be differences in the point where those elements “add up” to a decision to stop someone.

          Personally, I notice body language more than anything else. Not everyone does. While the Hispanic guy with tats all over and two small children hanging to him dropping his wife off at work *might* be a criminal, he’s not being a criminal *right now*… and how is that not obvious?

          • Well, and Hispanic guy with tats might have at one time been a criminal, and has since cleaned up his act but can’t afford tattoo removal.

            The other side of the “we must never judge” crap is the “always judge, forever.” As in, you can never be forgiven for any sin or mistake you’ve ever made, ever. You must eternally be outcast and burn in (figurative or social) hell for it. Now, with some, this seems to encompass only certain sins, and even then only when they are politically convenient. For other folks, this can translate into “He was a member of a gang when he was a teen/young adult, and so is eternally condemned as never-to-be-trusted-ever pond scum” or similar.

            People need to relearn what redemption and forgiveness are (and that forgiveness also does not mean “what you did was okay” but rather “I’m not going to hate you for it.”) And also the importance of the phrase “trust, but verify.” So if tatted up scary looking dude says he’s cleaned up his life, and wants to raise his two kids right–it’s not wrong to trust that. And it’s also not wrong to still watch what he actually does versus what he says to ensure that he’s being truthful, because people lie and also criminals can and do love their kids.

            • Well, everyone has tattoos now, but the… 10… omg… years ago when I had that job it was common for Hispanic men here to be totally inked up and for all I know he’d never been a criminal. But what I was quite certain of was that his appearance was unimportant compared to his demeanor. I certainly noticed his appearance but then I rather liked Juanita so her family was interesting to me. And I understood that some people would judge his appearance. I just think that it’s pretty far down on the list of things that might signal a need for caution.

              • Now, tats, sunken meth cheeks, a haunted wary look, nervous twitches…

              • I knew a tottoo artist for a while who said he spent an enormous amount of time talking people OUT of getting tattoos, mostly tats that would get them in trouble.

                “No, sweetie, you don’t want a tat of a crown with a line under it. That means ‘Property of The Latin Kings, and,you don’t want to be.”

            • > removal

              More “white privilege” there. Attempts for laser tattoo removal on dark skin don’t always end well.

              • I freely admit to knowing very little about the process, either of receiving a tattoo or removing one :p

                Though yeah, that would make sense, since I gather removal involves stripping several layers of epidermis, which would in essence create scar tissue which in turn generally results in something that doesn’t match the original. Whatever the skin tone, but I expect the result would be more obvious the more tan someone is.

                (Me, I’m one of those people that the only folks on this planet whiter and pastier than me are albinos, so…)

            • He could not afford removal doesn’t mean that he couldn’t afford to have them CHANGE or covered up. All tats ARE NOT THE SAME. That is why I said MS13 tats.

          • Synova, Minneapolis? The police department that chased Joel Rosenberg into his grave, because he knew Minnesota law better than they did? That put a cop on the street despite multiple reports he wasn’t suited for the work, because he was Somali and they wanted to show they weren’t racist — resulting in the murder of an innocent woman because he WASN’T suited for police work?

            I don’t put anything past that PD.

        • My husband is dealing with a mess where criminal activity would’ve been identified earlier, but every time someone pointed out that China specifically sends in Chinese spies and criminals that do the exact things that were observed, it got removed.

          So the giant, flashing thing that connected several different groups of issues was selectively removed, so suddenly they were “unrelated incidents.”

          Because gosh, noticing that China is racist as @!#$@# is bad!

          Likewise the firebombing of houses that was done by…Mexican cartels. Because they are also racist as heck, and don’t care if they get non-gang members who are black.

          But it’s racist to note that they are malignant racists, and recognize the patterns accordingly. /sigh

        • it still seems extremely likely to me that quite a few of them would not have been stopped if they’d been driving Volvos, wearing a sweater vest or singing along to Carly Rae Jepsen.

          See Chris Rock’s extremely usefully public service video on “How not to get your a$# kicked by the police.” Containing such useful pieces of advice such as, “Playing ‘F#$! the Police’ while getting pulled over by the police is a good way to get your a$3 kicked by the police.”

          • I think I’ve probably heard that somewhere, as it sounds vaguely familiar. Credit to Mr. Rock!

            • It’s easy to find on YouTube.

              It’s in line with his riff about “Black people hate niggers too.”

            • Had an inmate assistant assigned to me when I worked in a prison. Oh, sorry, correctional facility. Told me he was back in for violating parole. Local PD saw him on his motorcycle- a parole violation. He thought he could could get away, so he led them on a long high speed chase ending when he crashed his bike. Then- he started running and they had to chase him down. Then, and I quote- “When they caught me they beat the crap out of me. There was no excuse for that!”

              You really don’t want to irritate them then get caught where there are no witnesses. He was one of the few who admitted to being guilty. But he wasn’t going to end up in jail again for the same thing- running an illegal gambling establishment- because now he knew the right people to pay off to be left alone… If I could remember his name I’d look him up.

              • High speed chases are dangerous to everyone involved and everyone who happens to be an innocent bystander, too. In movies everyone leaps out of the way or dives to the side… there’s no T-boned Corolla with a baby in the back seat.

  15. Even the humble chicken is a stone cold killer

    That chicken staring at you is trying to figure out how to eat. They are the velociraptors of Jurassic Park after all.

    I understand the military has to train humans to kill, but people who think that’s because humans are born pure and innocent also need their heads examined. It’s because you’re contravening really early training, and that can be near-impossible to break.

    While there is an element of training to kill it is more to prioritize the ability and attempt to kill over your own best survival instincts. Your fight/flight/freeze response is being retrained to be fight/fight/fight. This done via forms of peritrauma, simulated trauma you can act through to condition the response.

    One odd side effect is military and first responder training designed to keep you in the game and able to act (not flee or freeze) when SHTF makes you more vulnerable to developing PTSD than someone without the programming. Apparently, the compartmentalizing doesn’t eliminate the need for the FFF cycle, just delays it and lets it build. Sufficient trauma, additive without relief or one big event, can make that boil over. Of course, additive is easier when you’re trained to stay for trauma and do it as a job.

  16. No, I’m not saying you don’t have a divine-formed soul (would I say that?)only that early on, without training, it’s subsumed to your animal nature.

    This is one of the best explanations of “original sin” I have ever read.

    • My religion refers to it as ‘the natural man’, as in “The natural man is an enemy to God…” and to paraphrase the rest of the verse it boils down to “and always will be, unless said man chooses to behave/learns to behave differently.”

      I believe that we are children of God, absolutely. But all that really means is we have just as great a capacity for evil as we do good…and that is a very, *very* big capacity. God may have moved into the ‘only does good things’ realm, but we haven’t, not by a long shot.

      • Yes, admitting I have the potential to be a complete monster helps me not be a complete monster.

        • Seconded. If you know what evil you are capable of, it helps you plan to avoid situations wherein that evil looks like a reasonable option.

          And you can decide ahead of time what you will not do even if you find yourself in such a situation through no fault of your own.

          • And this works for doing good things as well. It was pointed out to me as a teen (and I have since pointed it out to kids and teens I’ve taught in Sunday School) that it’s a lot easier to resist temptation in the moment if you decided long beforehand that you were Not Going To Do The Thing. (And if you then Do The Thing anyway, well…that’s more of an actual choice, then, isn’t it?)

    • Athena T. Cat is flipping a sock filled with catnip up into the air, then gnawing madly, then rolling on it. So much for “senior cats don’t do that.”

      • One of my cats loves his wand toy so much that I have to leave it on the floor for him at all times. If he sees it on my desk (even with the cord neatly wrapped up) he’ll go after it!

  17. ‘For how dangerous I refer you to our closest relatives, the chimps, who tear chimp babies limb from limb and eat them. Usually when the babies are from another troop… but sometimes when they belong to a low-dominance female in their own troop.”

    I suppose the abortion industry could be considered a form of “consumption”, especially when they were selling fetal body parts. And for those people funding and lobbying for funds for the abortion industry, all the women using them are from “another troop”, or are low on the dominance tree.

  18. Michel Maioranae

    Tyrannosaurus, Great White with blood in the water. Pikers compared to the number one most dangerous animal.
    What man has to be taught is passivity and submission. Genetics teaches the competition and violence.
    That is why the left will find they have made a huge mistake if they try to force their will on the rest of us.

  19. I laugh in the face of anyone who witters nonsense about children being innately pure and good. Or always telling the truth. (::dies laughing::) Now, I will agree with my faith’s teachings about accountability–in that they are innocent and not to be held (divinely) accountable for their actions prior to a certain age (we use the age of eight–old enough to mostly reason with, by then). But that does not ever say “they are little angels who do no wrong.” And I don’t even have kids of my own. (Though I hope to, because the little horrors are awesome.)

    If they were, our local leadership wouldn’t have such a danged hard time finding folks to work in the nursery or the preschool levels of the kids’ sunday school classes. Even my youngest sib–who was overall an abnormally well behaved and sweet kid, all the way from infancy through his teenage years and bids to stay the same as a young adult–was Not Wanted Around as a toddler by people unrelated to him. Largely because he’d start crying when he lost sight of parental units, and then he would projectile vomit on people. But still.

    (And even I, who loved him past reason, got very tired of the projectile vomiting.)

    • Children tell the truth, until they realize that negative consequences attach to it.

      • I think it’s more like they live their first year or two of verbal life on FastPenta.

        I don’t even remember what it was but I once had the kids all lined up for an interrogation… “Now who did the thing? The thing was done, and someone did it. Who?” I get denials down the row. “So. Nobody did the thing? Nobody?” Youngest piped up… “I’m not nobody!”

        Some days it’s all worth it. 😉

        • One of those moments where it’s hard not to bust out laughing when you’re supposed to be all serious and mad? 😀

          See, and at my house my parents were fairly sure there was an extra child named “Not Me” living there…

        • LOL. Oldest son had colored all over the furniture with a permanent marker. Confronted him. “I didn’t do it and I’ll never do it again!” Had to seriously bite my tongue to keep from laughing. Being the parent can be very painful!

        • “I think it’s more like they live their first year or two of verbal life on FastPenta.”

          LOL. Totally true.
          And I have five boys.
          This was one of their favorite songs.

          • Also why anyone who has spent time around small children becoming verbal *very* quickly learns to watch their language, lest small child air it out at THE most embarrassing moment.

            Younger brother (nine years behind me) was not quite four years old and recovering from his second open heart surgery. As it had been full on, chest-cracked-open and chest cavity stuffed with ice, the lining around his heart was quite inflamed as it healed. Apparently, this makes you very, very angry. Mom came upon the doctor and nurses crying with laughter one afternoon, because Younger Brother, enraged, had taken to throwing his pillows at them and informing them they were all despicable.

            The doctor, once he stopped laughing, complimented my parents on the fact that they clearly did not swear at home, because, he said, even in households where the parents didn’t think the kids were listening, the kids learned the swear words and they ALL came out in situations like this. (The parents got a similar compliment a couple of years later after Younger Brother broke his arm and didn’t come up with any profanity to call the doctor when he set it.)

            And them laughing at Younger Brother’s rage of course only made him angrier. Poor kid. But it also apparently was good for his physical recovery.

        • Okay guys I have to tell this story… I was one of the kids! But I’m oldest. I remember this to this day. One of us had *pooped behind the refrigerator*. Or at least sort of to the side at the back of it. Anyhow. We’re lined up for the interrogation. Clearly I did not poop behind the refrigerator so I said so. My siblings also denied it. Now, I could not *imagine* my little brother or sister lying about anything so I tried to figure out who it could have been then. So I suggested that perhaps Joey ( a boy my age that my Mom babysat who was ill behaved) had pooped behind the refrigerator.

          I got in SO much trouble.

          I really was trying to help, not just to blame Joey, because who else could it have been?

          What’s funny is that I don’t remember what my kids had done but I remember this from when I was probably no more than 5 or at most 6. I remember what the “crime” was, where the refrigerator sat in the kitchen, the interrogation, and my “helpful” suggestion.

      • You’re not wrong, of course. If they know telling the true will get them in trouble, they don’t tell the truth. But they still figure out that doing this or that thing will get them in trouble and figure out how to deny it was them in an attempt not to get in trouble.

      • The Experimental Model figured out how to lie. He noticed a piano keyboard by our hosts the other day, and was upset at being taken away from it. Some time later, he told me “Potty”—and when I took him downstairs to the bathroom, he said “All-done potty” and tried to slip past me to get back to the piano.

      • I think it’s less about being honest, and more about having no filter.

        • Babies understand and use words the same way animals do: as signals, not as symbols. That is, they emit a sound to show their state (like a cat meowing when hungry and purring when contented) or to get others to do something. Crying shows distress of some sort and gets Mama there to fix it – but it also gets her to pick you up, so eventually the baby may learn to do it just for the cuddling. He’s lying before he understands what a lie is. Or the baby may learn that cooing and smiling is also a good signal for cuddling, uninterrupted by checking the diapers, feeding, or burping.

          Babies also instinctively repeat whatever people say around them, and thus begin learning words. And words are great because they are precisely targeted signals. I think the third word my little sister learned was “bottle”, and it was a faster way to get one than crying. It’s only later on, as kids begin learning to put the words together into sentences, that they begin to understand that words are symbols and mean something – but by that time, they are already experienced in emitting signals that don’t accurately reflect their state but get them what they want, so understanding that words mean something doesn’t require that they be truthful.

      • Bill Cosby:

        “People say, ‘I love children because they’re so truthful. Children tell the truth!’ That’s a lie. I’ve got five of them. The only time they tell the truth is when they’re having pain.”

    • SheSellsSeashells

      What little children are is *honest*, faciallly and physically, because they haven’t learned sufficient self-control to lie convincingly. This makes them adorable. Not innocent.

      Kid, at the tender age of 7 months, realized (AFTER I had fed her so much that she virtually sloshed) that I was taking her back to the crib instead of up front to play with Daddy, and made the most pathetic starving-baby-must-be-fed face you have ever seen.

      But yeah. Totally innocent.

  20. Ape bodies😁

  21. Professor Badness

    Reminds me of Lawdog’s article on the Monster inside us all.
    Thoughtful reading.

  22. rightasusual2003gmailcom

    Surprisingly, this made me feel better. Because, I’d spent too much of the day obsessing over the Kavanaugh accusations, and whether this was going to derail the confirmation. And, how that would affect the future.
    Silly, isn’t it? The Dems are acting like they are because they are TERRIFIED – they can see the end of the gravy train, and they haven’t loaded up sufficiently on the gravy.
    They can see their jobs in jeopardy, their influence is shrinking, and they can envision a long, lonely life after their party tanks in the election.
    And, all that without being able to use the court systems to impose their twisted philosophy on the rest of us (not THEM, of course – they will never have to follow the laws and rules that govern the rest of us).
    It’s pitiful, really. Those shrunken, hostile people sent home to – what?
    Few kids.
    Few grandkids.
    No spouse.
    Few friends – and, those they have are bitter old women.
    Sitting in their McMansion houses, with their failing memories, lost legacy, diminished future.
    I wouldn’t be them for all the world.

  23. Your comment near the end about the roots of the violence “pacifists” demonstrate in “peaceful” demonstrations reminded me of a Ray Nelson cartoon in a fanzine in the sixties (no longer have the zine of course) which showed two policemen with the water drops around their head indicating worry and/or fear in a night scene (crescent moon overhead) and one is saying to the other, “Be careful, Joe, there’re some really violent pacifists in this neighborhood!” Incidentally, the lyrics of the song that bothered you are the fault of Oscar Hammerstein II. He wrote lyrics, then turned them over to Richard Rodgers, who composed tunes to fit. Maybe we could hope that Rodgers didn’t completely agree with the lyrics, since the tune he wrote this time is certainly one of his less distinguished ones. What I’ve read about Hammerstein makes him appear to be a liberal’s liberal, alas. Of course, I’ve never read James Michener’s (spelling?) book, Tales of the South Pacific, on which the musical play was based, and Hammerstein might be setting to verse something in the book, as some lines in Shaw’s Pygmalion were expanded into song lyrics in May Fair Lady. That would be some excuse . . . but then, Hammerstein was a liberal’s liberal . . . .

    • Had a student at Great Mistakes find religion and become a pacifist and put in a chit to be discharged as a CO. The night before his admin board he got in a bar fight in town. Hearing didn’t go well for him.

    • Like most things there are different sorts of pacifists. The pacifists that subsume their own nature with great effort and deliberation seem quite different than the sort who don’t see the need to do that.

  24. Ants, termites, bees, and wasps, etc.. wage war.

  25. Ah yes, monkey dominance. Ours is much subtler and better than theirs, it allows us to get through life without killing each other, if we do it right.

    Yes that’s right, lurking read-until-offended Liberal dickweeds. Humans are the -least- warlike mammals. Least warlike of anything higher than a mollusk, I think.

    Even bacteria have war. Why is there penicillin, genius pacifists? Bacteria chemical warfare weapon. It kills EVERYTHING.

    I’ve been having some fun with alien machine intelligences and monkey dominance. Being artificial, they don’t have 4 billion years of fine-tuning to fall back on when dominance is required. They have to figure it out themselves. So the Big Kahuna AI was busy taking copious notes, watching the Humans duke it out with each other.

  26. Wow. Just…wow.

    It’s weird to watch at times, the self-loathing of your own species. Or at least what you believe your own species to be.

    We’re not perfect, not by a long shot, but we can look at how we can be better. And, be disgusted when things are worse.

    I am in agreement with Vetinari on this-if there is any kind of Supreme Being out there that created a universe where dementia, Ebola, and Hillary Clinton exists, we have a duty and obligation to become the moral superior to him/her/it.

    • And on the other hand, what would a universe be like without free will? What would it be without biological processes and decay? What would it be like without the ability to rebel or make mistakes?

      • ^ This. Free will means *everything* has consequences, and so that also means that we end up not only having to live with the consequences of our own choices, but also everyone else’s. Which means bad things happen to good people.

        • Which means bad things happen to good people.

          One can also take the obverse view, which is that there’s only ever been one Good Person in the entire history of the world, so we-who-are-not-that-Good-Person deserve (in a “cosmic justice” way, not in a “direct consequence” way) the bad things that happen, and it is a mercy and a blessing when much of our life consists of getting good things instead.

          I can see both views being equally comforting at different times in different situations.

      • I still want free will and all of the problems that come with it.

        I just want more toolsets for dealing with the problems that free will generates.

  27. M Night S.’s =The Village= makes the serpent-was-already-in-the-garden-now-he’s-in-us point very well. Might be useful for teaching children of a certain age

  28. Re: “natural man,” the phrase in 1 Corinthians 2:14 is actually “psychikos anthropos.” Psychikos is usually translated in older stuff as “sensual,” in counterdistinction to “pneumatikos” (spiritual) and “physikos” (natural).

    In this usage, the “psyche” is not the mind or soul, but the emotions, passions, bodily urges, movements, and so on — the stuff that humans and animals both do, but rocks and angels don’t.

    • The traditional Western Catholic idea is that the “animal side” isn’t the part at fault, as people have much nastier ideas than animals ever get! Humans have evil urges in soul as well as in mind/body; sometimes the animal part of us is being more sensible and good than the rest of us. The natural world “fell” along with humanity, but it’s not their fault when they do bad things.

      Since humans were meant to guard and guide the natural world as God’s representatives, having our own powers turn on us is particularly painful. OTOH, forming beneficial relationships with the natural world is particularly good for us, and it probably helps us deal with the apparent chaos of the irrational animal parts of us, as well as with evil urges.

      Re: theology, I saw an interesting talk on EWTN Live last night, by a physics/theology guy named Anthony Rizzi. He has a few Catholic theology/science textbooks out, written from the idea that people today don’t have enough science and logic experiential knowledge, as opposed to memorizing facts and equations. That leads to lots of problems, including theology ones.

      So it’s a religious education series, that oddly is called Physics for Realists. Don’t know how good they are. Sounds like an interesting idea, and obviously plays off Aquinas and other science/philosophy/theology guys.

      • Well, actually it’s a philosophy education series, to be more precise — with the intent of grounding people for all fields, but primarily science and religion.

        It was an interesting show, but of course the conversation was wide-ranging, and the guy was Odd. Also I kept falling asleep at the most interesting parts, because I was pretty exhausted. So I missed bits.