Tuesday, 2 October 2012

Intent and why it is not magical,

I'm autistic and people often accuse me of being unaware of the feelings of others, but if you want real honest to god sheer ignorance of the feelings of anyone. Point out to an ignorant privileged person that they said something hurtful/bigoted/harmful to a minority and watch the shitty asshole mental gymnastics begin:

First: Intention.

Intention is not magic, just because you don't intend what you say to be hurtful, bigoted or harmful doesn't magically make you not hurtful, bigoted or harmful.

Because you don't get to control the emotions of everyone who hears whatever shitty thing you said and once you put your words out there, you can't control the impact they have no matter what you intended. When you say something horrible and argue that it isn't horrible because you didn't intend it to be? You are behaving like a spoilt pouting child. Only a child responds to harming another with a demand that the world cater to only your viewpoint and treat your viewpoint like the only one with value and reality, especially when you're privileged and said something bigoted to a minority said bigoted thing impacts.

I don't care if your intentions are so pure that angels would weep. I care about the harm your words do and good intentions are not a guarantee of being completely not harmful.

If your intentions were honestly *that* good? You'd be aghast at having cause unintentional harm rather than denying and defending it. When you go into full on defend and deny mode, I know your only intention is to look good, not to be good. I know you're more concerned with defending yourself than with not doing harm.

Secondly: Experience,

If you do not have a direct experience with the oppression you just reinforced by saying horrible things?

You are not in any position whatsoever to assert that a minority person you just harmed doesn't know what the fuck they're talking about, especially when your only experience is as a *privileged* person experience privilege in that realm.

There is a world of difference looking in from a position of privilege and having a direct experience with oppression. When you belittle our experience by claiming we don't knowour own oppression and exert your privilege, you are not being a good person, you're being an asshole.

Thirdly: Being an asshole,

If you still insist on doing the first two shitty types of behaviour? Don't follow up with the third and shittiest of the denial trifecta, the assertion that a person's minority status makes them unstable, inappropriate or otherwise sub-normal for objecting to whatever shitty fucking thing you said.

Mentally ill people and/or disabled people do not need to see their specialist or to have their carer come and "get them under control" because they challenged you over some shitty bigoted thing you said. A PoC is not "pulling the race card" because they called you on saying shitty racist things. A woman is not "hysterical" because she didn't find your rape joke funny.

If you do any of these three ways to be an asshole after you've said shitty stuff, go fuck yourself, if you do all three, go sodomize yourself with a sandpaper dildo soaked in ghost peppers until you are no longer a complete fucking tool.

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