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Cancel Culture and Free Speech

Can we get one thing out of the way first? Just because a rightwinger said something does not make it wrong. Just because a leftwinger says something does not make it right. AND THE OTHER WAY AROUND. (I wonder if I’ll ever be able to write a post these days without shouting at some point.)

It has to be the truth we’re aiming for, no matter who says it, because, as covid-19 has made clear if it wasn’t obvious before, reality matters. You can ignore it, and then it will kill you. Reality does not care.

And another thing to get out of the way: the philosophers may (or may not) be right that The Truth is unknowable. All we actually need is enough truth, just the facts, if you will, to live in reality with the fewest possible problems.

We do have a way of discerning facts. It’s called the scientific method. I’m not saying it’s always easy. That’s why it took a lot of people a lot of time to figure out how to pay attention to the actual facts and to stop themselves from jumping to conclusions. But at this point we do actually know how to do this. That’s why airplanes fly and light switches exist and vaccines work. If you like the benefits of your smartphone and aircon, you don’t get to sneer at science.

Okay. So where was I? Cancel culture.

There are two separate issues involved.

One is that people are tired of fighting the same battles over and over and over again. They’d like arguments that have been settled to stay settled and for people who refuse to accept that to just shut up and go away.

Which means we need a way to settle arguments. For most of human history it was decided by who had the most power. Might makes right. Except that it doesn’t and never did, which is why that method is completely shit at preventing reality from killing us.

The other way to settle arguments is evidence-based logic, of which the scientific method is a subset. That has an excellent track record. It sometimes heads down mistaken paths, but it can self-correct, which, considering human nature, is a near-miracle that needs much more appreciation than it gets.

Might-makes-right has no way to self-correct at all which is why it’s so lethal. But it does have one huge advantage: it lets you insist on whatever you want and if anyone objects, it lets you smash them.

The second issue in cancel culture is that there’s a difference between criticism and mobbing. Criticism attacks the argument with contrary evidence. Mobbing attacks the person, evidence is irrelevant. Criticism is in the tradition of logical argument that presumes a shared framework of acknowledging what constitutes evidence. Mobbing is in the tradition of might makes right.

One underappreciated point about might making right is that nothing can ever be settled. Once you’ve destroyed the opposition, some slight shade of dissension will be discovered in the ranks. Then you have to start over and destroy that. After succeeding, an even slighter shade becomes important, and you have to destroy that. And so on. A good new term for it is purity spirals [1].

So even if you decided, screw it, evidence-based logic is too boring, “Lizzie, smash!” is way more fun, you’ll never actually reach your goal. You’ll be fighting the heretics forever, until you die. It’s not a solution even when you win.

Let’s look at examples of cancelling versus criticism, just to make the distinction more clear.

If I say all the money in the world should go exclusively to Bill Gates, criticism points out why and how it would lead to social collapse. Criticism might also laugh, even mercilessly, at my inability to see the obvious disasters and point those out. A mob attack calls me names, or threatens violent crimes, or gets me fired. None of those address the argument. They try to frighten me into shutting up.

When JKRowling objects to mob attacks, she’s not talking about criticism of her views on biological sex. She’s talking about rape and death threats. About porn sent to threads where the senders want her child readers (and their parents) to be grossed out by it. Those aren’t arguments or criticisms or evidence showing where she’s wrong. They’re attacks on her. They’re supposed to put her off so much she shuts up. That’s mobbing.

It’s not uncommon for people with no real argument to claim mobbing when they’re merely being criticized. In the following case, Kaus doesn’t want anyone to mention that a politician he supports is corrupt. But, if there’s evidence, it’s criticism, not slander, to point out corruption.

Max Kennerly [2]
A perfect example of the phrase “when you’re accustomed to privilege, equality feels like oppression” is Kaus’s use of “punish” here. It is not “punishment” to advocate against a candidate to the U.S. Senate by pointing out the candidate’s craven and corrupt conduct.

Mickey Kaus:
The Lincoln Project becomes part of cancel culture — idea isn’t to get rid of Trump but punish anyone who agrees with Trump (and disagrees with Weaver!) on the issues–Hawley, Cotton, etc.?

The champion of insisting words mean the opposite of what the dictionary says is the Current Occupant of the White House. That’s funny when Calvin does it, but you’re supposed to grow out of it in grade school.

Watching Trump do it is a real out-of-mind experience.

Catherine Rampell [3].
Trump last night denounced totalitarianism (toe-tallie-terrio-tism), accusing left of “shaming dissenters & demanding submission from anyone who disagrees.”

Which is rich coming from the guy who does this [4]:

The president of the United States may not use the laws of the United States to harass the media based on his personal, petty displeasure with what he views as unwarranted criticism.

That, obviously, is an attack against a person. It’s silencing. It’s not any kind of evidence-based argument. It’s more than obviously based on might making right.

The next cases are not criticism. Ioffe’s and Ali’s ideas weren’t addressed, the people were targeted. That’s abuse of power, called mobbing when a mob does it, and silencing when CNN does it.

Julia Ioffe [5]
In my experience, this is how cancel culture works. It’s not the “woke mob” doing the canceling, but powerful institutions who are bowing to pressure from the people in power: the very conservatives who whine about cancel culture and deride liberals as “snowflakes.”

How Cancel Culture really works: During my year at CNN, which was a great experience, I was “warned” a total of 3.5 times. Each warning was because some Republicans, who defended Trump’s cruelty & abuses, complained about the most innocuous statements. Here’s the official list…

The only mistake they both make is implying the politics of the perps are relevant. A woke mob or a Brooks Brothers riot will both attack the person to cause enough terror to achieve silence. The essence is the mobbing, not the platform.

Most people try to pretend that their mobbing, unlike the nasty other side, is not a power play. Most people buy into the value of looking reasonable. But cancelling, attacking the person and not the idea, is a power play. When they have to admit to their tactics, the next line of defense is to say it’s not so bad. The targets are snowflakes for not being able to stand it, or they should put their big boy pants on, or whatever. Even if it was true that the attacks are minor, they’re still attacks. They’re still not criticism or argument or evidence-based. They’re still stupid at best.

Most of the time they’re a lot worse than that. They’re threats of ostracism, job loss, ruin, and physical harm, especially to women. People, especially women, have had to go into hiding, and/or hire security, sometimes for years. Most people don’t have that kind of money. That ruins lives. And that shuts people up. Not necessarily the people already targeted, but it definitely has a huge effect on the people who are still safe and would like to stay that way. Look at how many people write privately to support Rowling but are too terrified to speak up with their names attached. That’s not because they’re afraid their spelling will be criticized.

Marina Strinkovsky, @marstrina [6]

David Baddiel
On the Right, this myth of democracy involves ignoring the largely vested-interest right-wing press, and state-sponsored internet interference. On the left, it involves ignoring how terrified people actually are of Twitter mobs, and state-sponsored internet interference.

+ pretending that in *this one single context* things like cultural capital don’t matter, & the fact that academia & the arts overwhelmingly lean left is a phenomenon entirely innocent of any possible dynamics of power.

I hope I’ve made clear enough that mobbing/silencing are categorically different from criticism, and that the former is real harm. Which leaves the problem of how to decide when issues are settled if it’s done by logic, not force. How would we agree?

I think there is a solution, and it does not involve a Google-controlled Ministry of Truth.

(And before you start, let me say I’m perfectly aware the following is utopian. People are having way too much fun feeling righteous and they won’t want to stop merely because it could actually resolve the argument. If resolving arguments was the real goal, a lot more of them would be resolved in a lot less time.)

We could use the methods that have worked to give us our whole modern world. Use scientific evidence. When 95% of peer-reviewed papers agree, or 99% if you want ludicrous-mode stringency, then the issue is settled. Rehashes of settled issues are not published anywhere. Not in social media, or blogs, or news media, or TV. For small sources the offending content is simply removed. But in my world, for repeat offenders with large audiences there’d be steeper punishments the more they persisted. In my world, Sean Hannity would be banned from addressing more than three people at a time.

By the measure of near-unanimous agreement among scientists, there are many settled issues. The law of gravity, the roundness of the earth, evolution, the existence of anthropogenic climate change, the levels of effectiveness of different vaccines, and the existence of two biological sexes in mammals.

So what am I saying that adds to all the many pieces on “The Harper’s Letter [7]“?

That the letter is quite right and that cancel culture has a point. And the point means we do need a way to cancel useless drivel. And that we have a choice of accomplishing it by shouting at each other, or worse. Or by shutting down the drivel (and only the drivel!).

And that means starting to recognize that free speech protects speech, it protects communication, even attempts at communication (like this one, for instance). (And some of my earlier writing [8] on this topic.) It does not protect speech which is simply sound in the service of cheating, bullshitting, manipulating, humiliating, threatening, or destroying someone. Speech is communication, not a weapon. And the kind of “speech” Steve Bannon [9] was talking about when he said, “I have my weapons back” should never have been misconstrued as protected.

Our mission, and we have no choice but to accept it, is to take on the monumental task of defining free, protected speech as that which communicates and excludes that which does not.

We have to accept it because our only way of finding what reality has in store for us is to communicate. (Or to relearn everything all alone, and human life isn’t long enough for that.) That’s why it’s existentially important to solve this problem. Communication is our only route to understanding enough of reality to survive.

Reality always wins. You can work with it to find the most agreeable path, or you can be destroyed by it. Those are the choices, There are no others. And all the mobbing and cancelling and silencing in the world doesn’t change that. It would be smarter to pay enough attention to the facts to be able to use them to have an easier life.


Update, because I write too slowly to keep up with the firehose of intelligent commentary out there. Another couple of good articles on cancel culture. Helen Lewis [10], How Capitalism Drives Cancel Culture. Nicholas Grossman [11], Free Speech Defenders Don’t Understand the Critique Against Them.

20 Comments (Open | Close)

20 Comments To "Cancel Culture and Free Speech"

#1 Comment By Branjor On 26 Jul, 2020 @ 17:46

They really did mob JK Rowling, didn’t they? For instant, Meena Harris called Rowling an “alleged human”. As in, allegedly (but not really) human! While some were referring to what Rowling said as “spew” (it wasn’t), they sure had no trouble with the spew about “alleged human” coming out of Harris.

As to the mental health topic, Rowling was saying that the *professionals*, not the patients, were being lazy when they only prescribed medication, but didn’t bother to do therapy for the patients’ mental health issues. As a former mental health consumer I can attest to this. I had therapists that wanted to drug me and be done with it because they just didn’t want to bother, even though I wanted to heal myself through therapy. This doesn’t in any way, shape or form mean that a patient can’t or shouldn’t get needed medication to help them along too. However, as to therapy, the form of it is also important. I’ve had two types – in one, the most common, the therapist endeavored to tell me “what I was like” rather than to learn from *me* “what I was like.” This type of therapist basically wanted me to come to “understand” that I was a piece of shit (my own eventual understanding of what was going on) and the therapy they offered was worthless and changed nothing. The other type, priceless and rare, was accomplished by treating me *differently* from how I had always been treated and letting me unfold on my own. It took time, patience and, yes, love and the effects were profound beyond anything I had ever thought would be possible for me.

Anyway, I think JKR was right about the therapy as opposed to just giving pills and that her viewpoint is profoundly compassionate. It’s a disgrace all the abuse she has gotten.

#2 Comment By quixote On 28 Jul, 2020 @ 15:36

Some of the otherwise normal people (Meena Harris? *Really?*) piling on JKR boggle me. The power of mass delusion against even apparently rational people is just plain strange.

As for the whole business about medications, god, yes. You give people what helps. (DUH.) If that’s biochemical, that’s what you give. If it’s talk therapy, that’s what you give. If it’s both, plus LSD, that’s what you give. Etc., etc., etc. Sometimes all I can hear is myself screaming (quietly, in my own mind) “Peeeeople! What is so hard about this concept?”

For a while there, the outrage was all about how they’re trying to drug everyone into submission instead of doing (work- and money-intensive) talk therapy. Now the outrage machine is working on the side of neuropharmaceuticals.

Meanwhile, as always, the real issue is that people should be able to get what *they* say helps them, and that help needs to be part of no-charge-at-point-of-use universal medical care.

And, also yes: the compassion shines from Rowling’s writing. It’s another thing I can’t understand: how can normal people read that and be so blinded by a nutty counterfactual mythology that they can’t even see it?

#3 Comment By Branjor On 02 Aug, 2020 @ 16:23

I found this today, “The Top 7 Reasons JK Rowling is Transphobic.” Do not reject this before reading it!


#4 Comment By quixote On 03 Aug, 2020 @ 01:48

That is *perfect*. It needs to be printed onto billboards and web banners and put everywhere!

#5 Comment By Earlynerd On 05 Aug, 2020 @ 02:08

There do not seem to be, in the U.S. at least, any therapies that address the damage that being a disenfranchised person does to otherwise normal healthy people.

That category includes the half of all of humanity who are women, men who are not white, people who love or are even just attracted to people of their own sex, people who envision a different creator than a male, bearded, white, sandal-shod thirty-something deity, etc.

There do not seem to be any specialists in the psychology of oppression in the U.S. Given that the harm done to so many is due to our not belonging to the above categories *and nothing else*, it should be a lucrative and growing field. But there just don’t seem to be many, if any, of them and it’s certainly not a specialty.

Along those lines, here is a link that refutes that infamous male whine (adopted by far too many women as an excuse to refuse to confront sexism but still keep their progressive cred) that “a majority of white women voted for Trump”:


“There’s just one problem with this statistic: It’s probably not true.”

We didn’t.

#6 Comment By Branjor On 05 Aug, 2020 @ 12:05

There do not seem to be, in the U.S. at least, any therapies that address the damage that being a disenfranchised person does to otherwise normal healthy people.

That is no accident. The main purpose of therapy at its inception down to this day has always been social control, not healing. Psychiatry was invented at the time of the witch burnings in Europe and pathologized not the killers of women, but the women they killed! Psychology is also patriarchal and mostly individualizes the problem to the patient herself rather than society. The closest it comes to acknowledging a possible source outside of the patient is through family therapy, but even that does not deal with the wider society, its patriarchalism and the disenfranchisement of anyone who’s not straight, white and male (and preferably rich). The training of clinical social workers is also quite conservative.

I was very lucky to have found even the one therapist who would make a positive difference for me. It can be chalked up to her individual character and convictions and a basically loving and caring, but at the same time discerning, nature, though her formal training was as a licensed clinical social worker. She had no problems seeing and pointing out the ways in which I was abused, undermined and disenfranchised within my own family and the effects it would be *expected* to have on me. She also explained things clearly and in a way which made sense, unlike some of the confusing and obfuscating “explanations” I had gotten from some other therapists.

#7 Comment By Branjor On 05 Aug, 2020 @ 12:47

Re “the majority of white women voting for Trump”:

Yes, apparently the percentage was 47% rather than 52%. However, no, it *wasn’t* “47% of white women” voting for Trump. It was 47% of white women WHO VOTED voting for Trump. That’s still way too much IMO, but 47% of white women who voted is a LOT less than 47% of all white women!

#8 Comment By Earlynerd On 06 Aug, 2020 @ 00:04

Branjor at 2:05,

I am very glad that at least one person got the help they needed from this profession.

(typo in my comment above: should have been “due to our belonging”, not “not”!)

I did not know that psychiatry’s history of control rather than healing had started even earlier than Freud. I did know my mother’s generation was still being told straight out that there was something wrong mentally with women (wives all, or *that* was enforced as aberrant) who did not abide by their husband’s every desire and whim.

It’s encouraging to know that in your case, at least, this potentially invaluable cultural resource was used to help rather than harm. It’s infuriating when there is so much actual need for what it does right, and so much disparity between that and what all the money and time poured into training actually produces.

#9 Comment By quixote On 07 Aug, 2020 @ 15:06

The BS about “white women voted for Trump” makes me see red every time. Another example of a lie circling the world while the truth is still getting its shoes on.

I’ve been trying to correct it every time I see it anywhere, and it’s like dropping rose petals into the Grand Canyon for all the effect it has.

#10 Comment By Earlynerd On 11 Aug, 2020 @ 02:08

Rose petals in the Grand Canyon. Perfect metaphor.

Just because I can post it here and not to any “feminist” site:

That long standing lie about “domestic violence” calls being fewer among non-white women.

In fightng for women, in knowing so much of our lives and our cold statistics, in that time I’ve heard this from so many white men. “But women *can’t* enforce the law on felony voilence by men against women because it hurts black women”.

I knew from my experience in varigated communities that this was a just a lie to stuff a gag down white women’s throats. The largest demographic of women in the U.S., the one with the closest access to the levers of white men’s power, the women who go to their schools. who raise their children, who know all their secrets.

Of course it was a lie.


148. Mandatory arrest stalled in states because there was much discussion and concern
about its effect on communities of color among activists in the BWM. There was a belief
that women of color, i.e., African-American women, would not call the police because of
racism within the law enforcement community and the courts.

This perception was prob-
lematic after a study found that African-American women were more likely to call police
than their white counterparts. Ira W. Hutchison & J. David Hirschel,

Abused Women: Help-Seeking Strategies and Response Utilization, 4 VIOLENCE AGAINST
WOMEN 436, 451-54 (1998) (reporting that low-income and African-American women who were battered were more likely to rely on police response than were higher-income and white women who
were battered)

How very progressive, how abject, how cowardly.

A convenient lie, one I’ve heard for over 20 years now.

Relegated to a footnote. Number 148.

Progressive and liberal men are no different than conservative and right wing men.

They will fight against women to their last breath. They both cannot envision and are terrified in every waking moment by the thought that the women in their lives might suddenly becoming their equals.

This liberal law school notes one of the two stakes through American women’s rights as *race first*.

Race was never part of Castle Rock v. Gonzales. Ever.

(The other was USA v. Morrison, where a black varsity football player was found to have raped a woman scholarship athlete at Virginia Tech. This star athlete dropped out of school entirely after what Morrison and his buddy, plus Virginia Tech, did to her. The Supreme Court gutted VAWA in that case, finding that the victim’s claim to rights under VAWA did not violate Commerce Clause protections. That decison carved out “Heart of Atlanta Motel” to maintain Commerce Clause protetions across the U.S. to give every black person their gender segregated rights, down to renting a motel room. Kind of like the Catholic and Mormon churches, that to this day give black men full human rights but relegate all women to sub-human status).

The 14th amendment never died for any black man. It was suspended for all U.S. women. American law and all their police and all their guns will protect any man from any woman who dares to defend herself from a man as a matter of course.

It will put us in jail. It will try us by jury.

It explicitly will not protect women from men. See: Castle Rock and progeny.

That was the black letter law that became Lenahan v. U.S. Under Obama, where the U.S. was found to violate international human rights treaties *for women only*.

His administration ignored it. It’s still out there.


#11 Comment By quixote On 11 Aug, 2020 @ 11:55

(The last one had to be dug out of moderation, probably because of the way wp handles any changes to comments. Anyway, it’s back again. Sorry about that.)

Something tells me you have a legal background, earlynerd! If not by formal education, then by experience. I have to admit, I can’t stand legal precision even once or twice removed. My eyes glaze over in protective rejection.

Plus, the points you’re making are really depressing. And true. It’s amazing (not) how the international report on the deficiencies of US women’s human rights just sailed right past the US media.

#12 Comment By Branjor On 11 Aug, 2020 @ 20:17

Plus, the points you’re making are really depressing. And true.

Agreed. The last thing white men want are female equals in their own homes. In 2008 I was really excited about Hillary Clinton’s candidacy, but when Barack Obama joined the race I knew instantly that Hillary would not be the nominee, even though Obama had literally come out of nowhere and was far less qualified than Hillary, having far less experience and knowledge and overall less competency for the job.

#13 Comment By Earlynerd On 11 Aug, 2020 @ 21:29

About that legal stuff, I do have something of a background from personal experience and also from taking courses in the stuff.

But most of all from seeing, at too impressionable an age perhaps, how direct an impact the law had on my own personal life – from EEOC law -finally- starting to be enforced for women and rescuing me from the suicidal despair of facing a lifetime of “women’s” jobs (selling my personal self to some guy for purely economic reasons, no matter how long the contract ran, was not an option), to being allowed to have sex with a man on the same terms as men, to be allowed into more and more public places as myself and not some man’s accessory…

Then it all started to go backwards. The women I knew who had benefited most from the legal changes refused to fight or even speak up about this reversal. The professional women I knew started leaving IT in droves, without a fight. My sisters, whose successful lives and careers were made possible by all these changes, including legalized abortion and safe birth control, never lifted one finger to support these laws or fight to keep them.

As we lost ground, as our rights seeped away behind us, others’ rights were also under stealth attack, but it was the women’s organizations I belonged to that kept me informed of how bad it was becoming, not any “progressive” organization or person I knew. The local food co-op had just removed International Women’s Day from its roster of holidays when Reno v. Bossier Parish was decided – one of the first major setbacks for the Voting Rights act and unthinkable at the time. The oh-so-progressive co-op employees didn’t even know what the decision was or meant, in spite of all their concern for black people in foreign countries, but the woman pastor of the Unitarian church sure did.

Women are kidding themselves even now that the recent Supreme Court decision not outright overturning Roe is a victory. It’s anything but. It’s not my fight anymore but they should at least pay attention.

So much of where so many women are now in the U.S., in poverty, in danger, is the result of the laws that let us briefly become adults being overturned or ignored to death. It’s whats behind the unchanged rate of men murdering women – no enforcement, little punishment and no societal disapproval (after all, he bought her, didn’t he, ’cause she sure couldn’t earn that kind of living on her own.)

I do seem to be going on again, don’t I?

TL:DR – please do delete the previous post, it really is too far out in the weeds. And this one too, if it comes off the same way.

The only part that I haven’t shouted down a zillion echoing wells was about black women actually being more likely to call the police on violent partners than white women. I think it’s important because its another myth white men have successfully reified into conventional wisdom.

This perception was problematic after a study found that African-American women were more likely to call police than their white counterparts. Ira W. Hutchison & J. David Hirschel,

Abused Women: Help-Seeking Strategies and Response Utilization, 4 VIOLENCE AGAINST
WOMEN 436, 451-54 (1998) (reporting that low-income and African-American women who were battered were more likely to rely on police response than were higher-income and white women who
were battered)

I’m almost to where I need to be, out of politics entirely, so you should be safe from many more meandering posts 🙂

#14 Comment By Branjor On 12 Aug, 2020 @ 08:43

Hi, earlynerd, just want to say, please don’t ask for your posts to be deleted (unless you really want to, of course). They are appreciated, by me at least. I have learned a lot from them. I know that things are really rotten for us women, but you have given many details, often legal, that I didn’t know about but that tell me even more than I knew before about *why* things are so bad for us, what exactly they’ve done and that I am not crazy or wrong for feeling the way I do.

#15 Comment By Earlynerd On 12 Aug, 2020 @ 12:32

Thank you, Branjor. I really appreciate that.

Still working on going full Candide here, but it helps to know that my carrying on about legal obscurities has been of some help.

I really should start my own blog if I want to keep posting such “Duuuuh” moments as the fact that religion is only prioritized now because the U.S. is teeming with male supremacist religions but not one single female supremacist religion (or even white supremacist anymore – the one or two left are now referred to as “cults” everywhere), or that women are back to marriage as their primary adult means of making a living, a medieval system of devoir that predates modern economics and is still, as a means of support, based on women exchanging access to their bodies for access to men’s wages, or that the vast majority of employees are parents, but employers (and men) get to pretend that men are somehow the ideal child-free employee around whom their family hostile policies are shaped.

But failing that, I hope to keep checking back, reading Quixote’s posts and your much more succinct and relevant comments.

#16 Comment By Earlynerd On 19 Sep, 2020 @ 00:11

Justice Ginsberg died today. Like another incredibly courageous Justice, Thurgood Marshall, she brought the half alive ideals of the American constitution so much closer to living reality.

There is nothing so far in any of the articles I saw that truly shows how great a person Ruth Bader Ginsberg was, how much integrity she had, how much difference that integrity combined with intelligence and courage made to the lives of the majority of people in this country.

She was one of the extremely rare true feminists* who had any power in America. I think there is only one other remaining: Catherine McKinnon at University of Michigan’s renowned law school. Andra Dworkin was another, so were Justices Marshall and Blackman. Sandra O’Connor certainly wasn’t – her rulings on the right of American women to full equality and adulthood were very much along the lines of Alito’s – appeasements that either outright broke precedent or left the door wide open for later decisions to do so.

Justice Ginsberg carried forward everything women should have been able to expect in this country, but could not. She was a beautiful young woman who never let that define her, she married a wonderful man who proved that a lifelong equal partnership really could be achieved with someone of the opposite power dynamic, she survived the daily grinding down of sexism in her work and professional life with her mind and her optisism intact. She used her unique intelligence and voice with a rare lack of distraction, dilution or intimidation to transform that most abstract of concepts, justice, into daily reality for the majority of Americans.

Going back below the horizon again, but had to post this.

*A true feminist: someone who sees sexism clearly and who sees it whole. Someone for whom there is no reason, at all, of any kind, for women to have less freedom or fewer rights than men. Someone for whom “it’s the [male of the cause de jour]’s hour” argument simply isn’t on the board. Someone for whom “just not in our lifetime” was never an acceptable excuse for keeping injustice going just a little bit longer. Someone for whom, if the law was broken for women, it was broken for everyone.

#17 Comment By quixote On 19 Sep, 2020 @ 14:47

God, yes, Earlynerd. I should probably move your comment to the post I just did on that subject? Would you object?

What a loss. She fought so long and so hard and won so many battles.

#18 Comment By Earlynerd On 19 Sep, 2020 @ 15:28

Sure! But would it be possible to do just -one- more edit?

I’d like to cut out the last half of that last sentence, following the “-“, just for rhetoric’s sake. Can that be done or should I just delete and repost (or just stop fiddling with it)?

#19 Comment By Earlynerd On 19 Sep, 2020 @ 18:39

Errr-I meant “sure, go ahead and move it”, not “sure, I would object”.

English is haaarrrrd.

#20 Comment By Earlynerd On 25 Sep, 2020 @ 23:37

Damn, what a sucky year!

Ruth Bader Ginsberg and Diana Rigg gone within two weeks of each other:

Oh, well. I’m sure 2021 will be worse.