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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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Here's the funny thing about that:

I really don't care.

I could not care less about where her comments are coming from. I couldn't care less about her history of being anti-bigotry. I don't care that she's not "known to be a bigot in general-" what, she doesn't ride around with a white hood? Big freaking deal- or that this may very well be a one time thing. It doesn't matter.

Say I bought a gun right now, went out, and shot somebody. I've never shot anyone before. Hell, I've never held a gun before. But none of that would negate the consequences of that shooting. The person I shot would still have a bullet in them. I would still be culpable for assault, possibly murder. And with good reason.

Intent is not magic. Intent is not a get-out-of-jail-free card from being called on your shitty behaviour. Intent does not protect you from consequences. No matter what she may or may not have done in the past or will do in the future, the emotional wounds from what she's done now will still exist. You can't erase that.

The problem with that argument is that shooting someone with a gun is absolutely "shitty behavior," while writing a complex, thoughtful post about a complex issue is not. Even if you disagree with the post.

When an Islamic group decided to build a memorial center at/near the site of the 9/11 attack, they should have been able to predict that this would upset a lot of people. Not only were the attackers Islamic--and not only did the Islamic world in general show indecent glee about the attack, but this was only the last of many attacks on citizens and installations of this country which Islamic groups proudly claimed credit for. That some Muslims died in the attacks is immaterial--does not wipe out the long, long chain of Islamic hostility. It would have been one thing to have the Muslim victims' names placed with the others, and identified there as Muslims--but to use that site to proselytize for the religion that lies behind so many attacks on the innocent (I cannot forget the Jewish man in a wheelchair pushed over the side of the ship to drown, or Maj. Nadal's attack on soldiers at Fort Hood) was bound to raise a stink.

That's not shitty behaviour?

The same with other points of Islam that I find appalling (especially as a free woman) and totally against those basic principles of the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution...I feel that I personally (and many others) lean over backwards to put up with these things, to let Muslims believe stuff that unfits them for citizenship, on the grounds of their personal freedom.

And that's not shitty behaviour??

*adds LJ note*

Sorry, expressing an opinion is in no way equivalent to doing somebody physical harm, no matter how much you may disagree with the opinion.

Then it shouldn't matter that people are upset with her rampant Islamophobia, since that's just their opinions, naturellemente.

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