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Rules for Anchorites

Letters from Proxima Thule

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Let's Go Downtown and Watch the Failparade!
Oh, Elizabeth Moon! How could you write a post like that knowing it was bound raise a stink? The only answer is malice. Good citizens don't do that sort of thing, you know.

Honestly, though I know ours is a small community and in the larger scheme we are not terribly important, I am continually embarrassed every time someone raises a rock and exposes how much prejudice is still crawling around at the bottom of the SFF world. I want us, whose job it is to chronicle the future and a wealth of alternatives to the here and now, to be better than this. Why are we not better than this? How can people who make it their business to imagine and empathize with the truly alien offer such meager treatment to other humans?

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I am not saying action shouldn't be taken. Now I have been told that she's said things of this stripe before, which makes me think the concom probably doesn't see it as a problem/selects for writing not politics--it's not hard to find out what someone's politics are before selecting them as a GoH. I'm saying even Orson Scott Card, who says that and worse about gay people, gets invited as GoH to cons and it's not rescinded even when there is outcry.

There is a small Muslim presence at Wiscon, actually. At least a few women in scarves that I have noticed over the years. At least one woman who converted as an adult. Beyond that, I don't go up to everyone and ask their religion.

But I'm not looking for feelgood consensus--I'm saying I'm worried by the precedent. I think saying I'm worried is an ok thing, you know. I am not in a position to tell anyone what to do. But saying it concerns me, it's a weapon that can be used against us as well? Saying I think a walkout is a better idea, and one that would have more power as far as lasting beyond internet memory? I feel like you're attacking me for thinking out loud about this stuff. It was a horrible post--but there are horrible GoHs out there all over the place and no one ever asks that Dan Simmons be removed.

Edited at 2010-09-17 12:12 pm (UTC)

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bilious nonsense about Muslims falls into 'bad, but still in the range of acceptably debatable'

This. This, precisely this, is what I have been freaking the fuck out about. Where people I thought were my friends think this is somehow a point of actual debate and that by refusing to "engage reasonably" I am the one who's off the mark.

I've been way too angry and upset to formulate it clearly, so thank you yet again.

(Not talking about you, catvalente, wouldn't be presumptuous enough to think I was a friend rather than fangirl of yours in the first place, but wanted to make that clear -- I mean that people, er, men, keep telling me off for refusing to explain calmly to them what Moon said that was actually so bad.)

by refusing to "engage reasonably" I am the one who's off the mark.

I bet you arent educating people enough either...

If her tirade had been targeted at queer folks, or at a number of other groups, I suspect that the question of her disinvitation would be being debated a lot more hotly, as opposed to the pretty quick feelgood consensus of 'Let her be GoH, but let's 'challenge' her, too.'

I meant to say earlier, that I agree with this completely.

What an excellent opportunity for us all to practice forgiveness or mercy or detachment or humility or... whatever our particular brand of spirituality espouses. Thank you, universe, for providing obstacles that we may overcome with love.

It's easier for me to forgive writers, as I feel the process of creation is redemptive. They are making tangible contributions to society; ugly nonsense like Moon's post is off the books, literally.

If they happen to manage to write insightful, witty journals, such as yours, it's all icing & lagniappes. <3

Your first paragraph sounds an awful lot like "God allows suffering in the world because it builds character."

I read it more as correlation than causation.

I think you're projecting, and missing the ironic tone.

I'm missing the ironic tone :)

(And yes, *totally* projecting - bad history. Which isn't really history either...nevermind, TMI.)

What makes it worse is that the first eight paragraphs actually make some sense, and then she goes off the deep end. It's like someone meticulously building a nice first floor and then building a second floor made of crazy on top of it.

Hi there!

I thought of it as a pretty facade to a complete disaster, myself. It was a pretty facade, wasn't it?

Oh Hi! Seems we share more then one fandom:)
That's another way to look at it. I think my version comes from the "argument is like a ladder" metaphor combing with the "argument as building". Also, your metaphor seems, to me, to be assuming malice, which I don't without much better knowledge.