You Said It...!

You Said It...!

Although I sometimes think there's as much harm as good, I'm still on Facebook.  It's a convenient place to see and share what's going on in the lives of friends far and near.  But it's also a convenient place for people to spew inflammatory nonsense.  So here's a closer look at one of the latter:

I used to think I was pretty much just a regular person, but I was born white into a two-parent household which now labels me as "Privileged", racist...

Being born white into a two-parent household is privilege.  And being white in a white-supremacist culture means odds are high that you, like me, have some ingrained beliefs and attitudes that are racist.  But note the distinction – no one is calling you a racist (necessarily), merely noting that you've lived your life on the advantaged side of a divide.  That means that you, like me, might not immediately see what impact things might have on people who don't have your background of advantage.

...and responsible for slavery.

Again, a fine distinction.  No one living in the US today is "responsible" for slavery which took place in the US centuries ago.  However, as a white person, odds are good that to a greater or lesser extent you have received the benefits of a family heritage where your family drew advantages from that economic system.  Or of the more modern economic systems which have also advantaged white people over black people.

Again, no one is saying that we created these systems because we're white.  But we have lived under them, drawing advantages to a greater or lesser extent that were probably not available to people of color.

I am a fiscal and moral conservative, which by today's standards, makes me a fascist because I plan & budget.

No one is calling anyone a fascist because they have a budget.  (In fact, if you don't, You Need A Budget!)  However, if you're using that budget as your excuse for why one of the richest nations on earth, with the lowest tax burden of any developed country, can't afford to take care of its citizens but can afford junkets and bailouts for wealthy corporations?  That makes you a fascist; don't blame it on your budget.

But I now find out that I am not here because I earned it, but because I was "advantaged”.

Again, the two are not mutually exclusive.  You may have earned what you have and where you are – but you did not earn where you started from, and you did not necessarily earn the opportunities you have taken advantage of.

I am heterosexual, which according to some folks, now makes me a homophobic.

No one is saying that being heterosexual makes someone homophobic.  But if you think that just because you are heterosexual, everyone should be; if you think that people who are not like you do not deserve equal rights or to be treated as humans... that makes you homophobic.

I am not a Muslim, which now labels me as an infidel.

Only to the extent that Islam labels all non-Muslims as "infidels."  And Judaism labels non-Hebrews as "goyim" (the peoples).  And Christianity has been known to refer to non-Christians as "heathens."  Every religion has a term for people who are outside it.

I believe in the 2nd Amendment, which makes me a threat to the liberals and I get labeled as being part of a militia.

Not a threat, just someone prizing your own rights being totally unfettered ("Mah gunz!") over peoples' lives.  The rest of the world can't understand why the US will not do something about how people keep shooting other people here.  Dramatically reducing the number of guns around is a choice many nations have taken, but it's far from the only model that's worked in the world.  But what we're doing now isn't working, and refusing to talk about changes?  That's holding onto what's working for you (a.k.a. privilege) even though it's hurting others.

I think and I reason, and I doubt much of what the "main stream" media tells me, which makes me a "Right-wing conspiracy nut”.

There's a huge difference between "thinking and reasoning" and believing that accurate reporting of facts is somehow biased.  There is media that slants to the left and to the right.  Media's job is to present facts, but we've somehow turned their role into purveyors of at least opinion, if not outright fabricated entertainment.  Take a look at the Media Bias Chart.  If your primary source of news is strongly slanted or isn't primarily fact-based, that is the sign that you might be a "nut."

I am proud of my heritage and our inclusive American culture, making me a xenophobe.

Interesting how most people who say this aren't actually all that inclusive.  You can be proud of your heritage and culture, without denigrating others.  And if you think that your heritage and culture are the only ones that are good?  Yeah, that's xenophobia.

I believe in hard work, fair play, and fair compensation according to each individual's merits, which today makes me a target of socialists and Antifa.

Great!  The rest of us believe in hard work, fair play, and fair compensation too!  So join us in fighting against inequities in compensation based on race, gender, and other attributes which have nothing to do with "each individual's merits."  That means giving every individual a fair shot at making the most of their individual merits.  When hard work and merit are the only differentiators, we'll all be in alignment, don't you think?

I think males and females should go to the restroom based on the birth sex, so I am labeled a sexist.

Frankly, what business of yours is it what genitals anyone was born with or currently has?  Unless they're your genitals or genitals that you intend to come into direct contact with your genitals, mind your own junk.

I think people should have privacy when they go to the bathroom, and if they're in a private space, it doesn't matter who is in other spaces which might be nearby.

I believe our system guarantees freedom of effort - not freedom of outcome or subsidies which must make me a borderline sociopath.

Yeah, it kind of does seem that way.  But actually, it's a reflection of that "privilege" discussion earlier.  "Subsidies" are another way of saying that we're making sure everyone has a fair starting point.  If your starting point was just fine, you don't understand why the outcome isn't determined by effort.

Oh, and let's not get started on all the subsidies that you're perfectly happy to take advantage of.  Not being taxed on your health insurance, even if you don't itemize? That's a subsidy.  Propping up farm prices?  That's a subsidy.  Social Security? Those checks you received a few months ago?  All subsidies.  Did you call your Congresspeople to oppose those, or send them back?

Didn't think so.

I believe in a strong defense and protection of America for and by all citizens, now making me a militant.

Defense?  Absolutely!  Defend our allies, yes.  Go invade other countries on fabricated pretenses?  Launch offensive strikes without the buy-in of the Congress who has the sole power to declare war?  That's what people mean when they talk about militancy.

I am proud of our flag, what it stands for and the many who died to let it fly, so I stand and salute during our National Anthem - so I must be a racist.

No, you're a racist if you think there's no problem that warrants people peacefully demanding change.

I kneel only for The Cross, which makes me racist.

No one is demanding that you kneel, but you might want to understand why others are choosing to do so.  But note that the cross was the oppressive execution method used by the people in power (the Romans) to kill a person of color in a subjugated government.

I think the Confederate monuments around our country symbolizes history, so I'm labeled as having hate in my heart when some suddenly are offended by their presence.

I'm labeled racist when thinking the erasing of history will potentially cause us to repeat the problems.

Not exactly sudden.  We build monuments to people who have done great things, or to people who suffered unjustly.  Why do we have monuments to the traitors?  No one is suggesting that we wipe out all monuments to the Civil War – but we should wipe out the monuments that send the wrong message about who we think was in the right.  Was it the racist traitors, rebelling against the government in order to ensure that they would be able to keep owning other human beings?  Or was it the oppressed people yearning to be free, and "the many who died to let [our country's flag] fly" that you claim to admire?

I think that all lives matter, which labels me as a racist.

As has been said well already, if your wife asks if you love her and you reply, "I love everyone," that might be true but it will also be hurtful.  Or suppose you're dining out and someone at your table hasn't received their food; when they say to the waiter, "I need my food," is "We all need our food!" a helpful contribution?  You've already got your food.

White lives are already valued in our society.  Once Black Lives Matter, "All Live Matter" can finally be true.

I support Trump, which labels me as a racist.

Not necessarily, but it labels you as someone for whom racism isn't a deal-breaker. It also labels you as okay with nepotism, authoritarianism, military deployments against civilians, infidelity, feigned faith, use of political office to rig an election, etc.  Not exactly a good look.

I think the riots and destruction of property around our country is wrong and is just an excuse to push a political agenda, so I'm labeled a racist.

It is wrong, and it is being used to push an agenda.  But given that the rioters and looters are, by and large, not the people protesting – that political agenda seems to be "Don't give in to these 'stop killing black people' demands!"

If you support that agenda, then, well....  You said it.

I support our cops, which labels me as a racist.

I support the cops who protect and serve, treating people fairly under the law and keeping other cops in line.  If you support the cops who kill innocent black people, then, well.... You said it.

I vote for the Republican party because it best represents my conservative views, which labels me as a racist.

I hear you.  I sympathize a lot with the historical views of the Republican party.  But the Republican party has departed from that conservative history.  If you truly are a conservative, then I commend the Libertarian party to your consideration.

But what the Republican agenda has become is largely about making those who are already wealthy wealthier, at the expense of people who haven't had the chance to become wealthy. And those wealthy people are, by and large, white.  So....  You said it.

I question how fear is being used to control us during the COVID-19 pandemic and think the crisis is being used for political gain, so I'm labeled careless and non-sympathetic.

Let's see....  We can either continue to contain the spread of the virus, acknowledging that it will have economic impacts, but will save lives; or we can decide that our present economy is more important than people surviving to contribute to and benefit from it.  When you choose corporations over people, that is pretty non-sympathetic, yes.

Staying closed will definitely have an economic impact on people.  One option would be to have the government take care of its citizens, because that's what it's there for.  We make sure everyone gets through this, and then we reopen the economy safely.  Oh, but that won't work, because "our system guarantees freedom of effort - not freedom of outcome or subsidies."

Well, our system sure isn't guaranteeing the outcome of saving lives, you've got that right.

Liberals have tried to make me feel bad about who I am! Based on everything above, some want me to believe I am a bad person, I'm not, I'm a good person who loves my country.

I'm sure you are.  The problem is, that country has some particularly non-lovable traits.  Love accepts someone as they are, but love also doesn't leave them the way they were.  Love your country by loving your fellow citizens.

Love your country enough to help it be better.  Start by being better yourself.  I'm trying to.