Tuesday, 17 December 2013

On the outside...

TW: Mention of suicide and sexual assault.

Or why social justice hurts. I should have learned my lesson but I never do.

White mainstream feminists have no time for me. I am not as privileged as them. I don't belong in their spaces.

PoC feminists do not want me in their spaces, because I am not one of them.

Gay and Lesbian circles have no time for me, I'm too "crazy" and Bisexual to belong there.

Trans circles have no time for me, I own a Uterus and am non-binary, and my life cuts like a knife in ways they don't like.

Poverty circles have no time for me. I do not fit the poverty porn mold of the virtuous poor person.

Survivors circles have no time for me, because I do not hurt in the 'right' ways or express that hurt in the 'right' way.

Autism circles have no time for me because my level doesn't remain stable when under pressure from other conditions.

Disabled spaces have no time for me, I am too harsh, too willing to defend myself. I lack what they feel is the right amount of 'vulnerability'. I never learned to play nice, it was smothered out of me by oppression.

They. I.

I'm on the outside, there are no spaces for minorities like me. We have too many oppressions clustered thickly on top of one another in great smothering sheets. We cannot exist within the spaces dedicated to one of our oppressions because those spaces don't acknowledge our layered existence, we're not just one thing, we're a multitude. A great mass of bleeding wounds, and spaces tenderly bandage one, then complain about all the blood on the carpet because of the others.

Yet we're never supposed to be angry or to resent those who yank open our bleeding wounds, peer curiously into the depths of our hurt and then declare it either not good enough or say there is no wound there at all. We're not supposed to talk about our conflicting lives with their intertwined existence of privilege and a whole mass of oppression. We're especially not supposed to talk about the ways the narratives single issues spaces push hurt us, or when another minority victimises us.

We're not supposed to talk about being told to not phone the police on minority rapists because the fact that the minority they belong to might suffer police oppression is considered more important than our safety and pain. We're not supposed to talk about the cult of nice. The cult that says speaking about oppression is so sacred that nobody may speak out when that speech oppresses.

We're not supposed to talk about how one sided it always is, with us walled out. The lack of support. The fact that social justice inevitably never applies to us, we don't belong so it's okay to slut shame, victim blame and do worse to us.

We're not supposed to talk about cut wrists and the sharp smell of blood, the rattle of yet another pot brimming with the little white pills. We're not supposedly to talk about hundreds of minority people hammering single person who doesn't fit, or the late nights talking, pleading, begging them to hold on, just one more minute, just one, until you're hoarse, exhausted and the sun is just coming up and you know the battle is won, at least until tonight when it starts all over again.

We don't fit and social justice advocates do this over and over to those of us on the outside. But we are never supposed to talk about it, our mouths stopped with "but you don't want to be a bigot" and told we're being unfair when we hint around the edges of why social justice hurts like a knife in you.

We are never supposed to talk because all is permissible in the pursuit of social justice for those with fewer oppressions. As silent as the grave we must be. Because we don't matter. We've never mattered, no multitudes turn out for us, our lives are unmarked by the concern of social justice advocates as fresh snow is unmarked by the tread of feet, we simply cease to exist in this landscape of neat boxes none of which we fit into.

Intersectionality? has never been for us. We don't fit into it's confines.

How not to suck at challenging oppression and privilege:

So you are *insert minority*, but you're also white/able bodied/cis/male/rich/insert a privilege? Please don't do this.

1. Don't square up to privileged people for being oppressive to you and toss groups you don't belong to into your complaint about the lack of inclusion just to give it more heft.

People who have an oppression you do not are not a weapon for you to use, we have our own voices. Let us use them. Anything else is appropriating in nature.

That said one is still more acceptable than two.

2. Don't square up to mainstream groups, appropriate the struggles of others to give your argument more heft and then follow it up by being oppressive as fuck to the group or groups you just appropriated from.

If your fucking default is being a racist/disabilist/classist/transphobic/homophobic/biphobic/sexist shit? You do not get to use PoC/disabled/poor/GLBTQ or presumed female people to add heft to your arguments and then go straight back to being a bigot. It's all or nothing, either support us or don't, don't just support us when it's convenient for you.

3. Don't justify saying oppressive shit with "I'm talking about my oppression".

No, fuck you. It is never okay to say oppressive shit, you should fucking well know better, if you wouldn't like this shit done to you, don't do it to others.

4. Don't act like social justice is only applicable to your specific group.

We all deserve social justice, not to mention, how the fuck do you think your oppression will go away while any oppression exists? When one of us is dehumanised, it makes all of us easy to dehaumanise.

5. Don't expect support and allyship when you refuse to return the favour.

If you are writing long essays on what you expect from allies but basically refuse to be an ally to anyone else?

Yeah, you're fucking up majorly.

6. Don't play oppression olympics.

Yes, we get that X oppression is more important to you but they're all fucking well important. Ours are just as important to us as yours are to you.

7. Don't pretend you didn't hear anything and carry right on when told you said some oppressive shit.

Someone asks you not to use a slur? It merits more than silence and continuing to use the slurs, it merits at least an "I'll think about it", nobody is asking you to fall down begging forgiveness, but don't ignore people you just hurt.

8. Don't treat the issues of others with contempt and then expect respect for yours.

I shouldn't even have to say this. But apparently I do, because really telling other oppressed people to sit down and shut up is still a fucking thing supposed advocates for social justice do.

End rant.

Monday, 16 December 2013

White woman is not short hand for...

Straight, able bodied, rich, cis, conventionally pretty white woman okay?

I am tired of the myth that if some abuser who targeted WoC had so much as looked funny at any white girl, he'd be in jail. It isn't true in reality unless the white girl has some serious privilege.

Taking the Rochdale case as an example? The only reason that case broke and we heard about it? Was the predators targeted one girl who had parents with the wherewithal to do something about it. If they'd stuck to their usual MO of targeting severely underprivileged white girls? It would probably still be going on. I come from a place where the same thing went down, as far as I know? It's still going on, nobody in power is going to move against the rich men preying on the poverty stricken children of a desperately poor community.

Nobody cares about the children raped there by those who could be the brothers of the Rochdale predators. We grew into adults and nobody listened. Some of the adults who should have protected us even helped them target us. The idea that magically adults would have listened to us based on our skin color is erasive fucking crap okay? The targeted community houses the poorest of the poor with high levels of untreated disability and mental health issues, our council didn't even care we existed, the social services? Took a massively lax approach to our safety, it wasn't worth telling them anything, they'd tell those we couldn't trust who would punish us for being victimised and then send us back in without any sort of protection, and of course once it came out that you were a victim? You were a slut and the adults would basically look the other way even more strenuously and let those guys do whatever they wanted with you.

As a child? I learned adults wouldn't protect me, that home wasn't safe and not to trust rich men from certain communities because so many were predators and nobody would do anything about it. I'm as white as a milk bottle, so don't fucking tell me that the world cares about all white presumed women because it doesn't. It cares about white, presumed straight, able bodied, middle class and up, cis white women. The rest of us can go fuck ourselves as far as it's concerned.

"If one of the victims was white it would be different" makes a good soundbyte, but it's not true and it's classist/disablist erasive crap that doesn't recognise that white presumed women don't all belong to the straight, able bodied, well off, conventionally pretty, white cis woman club.

Sunday, 15 December 2013

What it means to grow up seen as a girl.

Trigger warning for discussion of trans issues, privilege, sexual assault and socialisation.

Being seen as a girl, it affects people. While strides have been made in getting trans children to be able to transition earlier and grow up as their actual gender? There still seems to be an old guard of late transitioning Trans women who really really do not get what it is like to grow up seen as being a girl.

They can endlessly explain how trans misogyny affects their lives since they came out, but yet not even consider that growing up under the shadow of being seen as a girl distorts adult FAAB people's view of themselves. They dismiss the notion that such a thing exists because TERFS misuse the concept and because they just plain don't get it or the psychological impact of a from birth interpersonal message of fear and pressure to conform that comes with society seeing you as a girl.

To give an example. I knew a trans femme growing up, they were my babysitter. They never got the gross comments I did. Nobody called them a slut and a whore at eight for wearing shorts, because they were seen as a boy and perceived boys for the most part don't get called sluts and whores. Creepy old men don't openly talk about how they want to rape perceived boys, they do when it comes to perceived girls. That trans femme also would steal my clothing and waltz around the house in relative safety with nobody looking up their skirts, meanwhile I had boys trying to rape me.

They would ask me questions about my genitals and body, intrusive, discomforting questions for a child who at the time hadn't even hit puberty. They tried to peep at me on a regular basis, try dealing with that AND gender disphoria on top of everything else, I was trying very hard not to think about how wrong my body was and that person endlessly reminded me that they and everyone else saw me as a girl and were going to treat me as one, which meant treating my body as public property that they were entitled to examine. At one point they even tried to climb into bed with me and explore my body because they "wanted to know how vaginas felt", I was ten. So yes, if I'm a little prickly about Trans women telling everyone that doesn't happen, that is fucking why. That person demonstrated pure entitlement to my body. They didn't even seem to comprehend that I existed as anything other than as a thing for them to examine.

And that really is the basis of the difference, individuals who do not grow up seen as women don't get the same interpersonal messages from those around them. They don't live a life in which their formative years are filled with a bombardment of "comply", "Be lady like", "you come dead last", "your anger is inappropriate/not to be taken seriously". Those of us seen as girls are told from birth we should be the background, not the character. It affects us, it trains us to be soft and small, to constantly apologise for daring to draw breath. This is female socialisation, it is the messages your family and culture teaches you in person because it sees you as a girl growing up, it is the constantly policing of your body, your voice, how you look, how much space you take up and your right to even exist by those directly around you. It is a constant message of "you are a servant to others, not the master of yourself". It is a childhood interpersonal message exclusively given to those who are viewed in childhood as female by others, including trans women who are raised as women. In short, it's a litany that for FAAB people starts up the minute the doctor says "congratulations, it's a girl".

As for male socialisation? We know it by another term, toxic masculinity. It's being treated as if message that the world is yours simply because the world see's you as a boy. It's having your right to exist affirmed by those around you from the moment you're born. It doesn't matter if you're not a boy, so long as the world see's you as one? It thinks you have a right to exist front and center and will treat you as such. Does it change that trans people often get shit for being GNC? Nope, but the shit trans women get for not conforming to male gender stereotypes while being seen as a male isn't the same as being seen as a woman.

Being seen as a woman growing up is to be constantly undermined by those around you based on nothing more than your perceived gender. Being perceived as a boy, even a GNC one i still being seen as a boy and comes with affirmation, even when your life really sucks.

So what's the answer? Well it's not pretending that people don't treat people differently depending on their perceived gender.

It's tackling the barriers that stop trans children from coming out, and transitioning. It's tackling the toxic interpersonal messages that society sends children depending on their perceived gender. It's raising new generations who grow up surrounded by people who deliver the same message of affirmation, belonging and respect no matter what gender they think those children are.

It's talking about how we stereotype gender, assign gender to people at birth and then police them to fit them into a notion of gender nobody can or even should fit into. It's talking about the difference between being raised as a trans identified individual and coming out as one as an adult. It's about not letting TERFS dictate our stance by taking up the other extreme from them. They claim we're rapists? The response should be pointing out how few trans rapists actually exist compared to cis male rapists, not claiming we don't have any and erasing the victims of the handful of trans rapists.

Gender is more than what is in our pants, it's in our heads, and it's also in how society views us.

Tuesday, 10 December 2013


After last night's meltdown/breakdown on twitter, my brain feels like a bowl of cold porridge. I guess I want to talk about what happened. The thing is I'm not proud of last night, I was irrational, angry and inarticulate, so I said some shit that was hurtful in response to being hurt myself. I'm sorry for hurting people, but I'm still angry about what others did to me as well.

Last night? Was yet another reiteration of the fact that people like me basically don't matter in the social justice cause. That is what I was being told last night even though those saying it might not have intended or even realised that was what they were saying to me. I am tired of it, I think your struggles matter, so why do so many of you treat me in ways that make it seem like mine don't?

I am tired of the following behaviour in SJ circles:

1. People refusing to accommodate anyone's limitations in understanding, grasp of tools or struggles, while at the same time expecting everyone to accommodate your anger.

I mean get it, you're angry about about oppression, you have legit reasons for that anger and yes,it means you may say things that are problematic about other groups. But when you expect anything problematic you say out of anger to be handwaved away while demanding that you get to jump all over anyone else for the same or for say communications issues?

We all need space to struggle, I respect your anger and I do think it makes saying problematic things partially understandable though not excusable, I still think that when you've cooled down, you should acknowledge what you said was problematic. That however never happens, it's always "I'm angry so it's okay". If you don't have to accommodate my problems articulating, why do you expect me to treat your anger as making hurtful shit okay?

2. Deciding others articulating their pain is emotional manipulation.

People in pain are not concentrating on emotionally manipulating you, they're generally more focused on the pain. I don't take your articulation of pain as emotional manipulation, kindly extend the same respect.

That accusation is kinda ironic given one could deem the accusations of not caring about the mental health of others leveled at me to be "emotional manipulation". Because they could be taken as being used to shut people up which would be emotional manipulation.

3. Moving from "Having X privilege means people getting this stuff I don't" to "Having X privilege means X group experiences Y privilege in N ways".

No, just no.

You get to articulate your experience of your oppression, you cross the line when you decide your discussion of privilege can dip into how others experience oppression especially oppression you don't face.

How our oppressions work? Are ours to articulate. You want to talk about what you don't get? or privilege in those terms? I'll support you to the hilt, you want to articulate how I or anyone else experiences oppression without listening to us about it? You're being part of the problem and people are entitled to say that.

4. Deciding that we have to agree with you on every point or else.

The world is not dividing into wonderful social justice warriors who agree with you 100% of the time and mean old bigots. When you say something oppressive in the course of talking about oppression, people saying they agree with what you said about your oppression but pointing out the comment you made that was oppressive? Not disagreement with everything outside of it you said.

I agree Hugo is an abusive shit, I however don't think Hugo's abuse justifies all the ugly oppressive shit said about mental health in response to him. Disagreeing with the oppressive things said about mental health in response to his abusing of people has nothing to do with defending him. It has to do with the fact that oppressive mental health stereotypes said in response to privileged abusers with mental health issues is still ugly oppressive shit that impacts all mentally ill people.

It's important that we believe even those we dislike or outright despise when it comes to oppression, abuse and mental health issues. Someone can be both a raging abusive shit and an oppressed person. Their oppression doesn't justify or excuse their abusive behaviour, but nor does their behaviour erase their oppression or justify reinforcing disbelieving anyone about their oppressions.

So yes, I do care about how Hugo abused WoC, but I also care about believing people when they say they're having a breakdown. Also distrusting Hugo's honest and reinforcing disbelieving people about mental health issues are not the same thing. When you do the latter, you don't get to say it's the former and therefore okay.

5. Disbelieving people simply because we aren't popular.

Just because you dislike someone doesn't mean that their concerns and issues don't matter. We all matter, there are plenty of people I can't stand, their oppressions still matter to me.

6. Acting like your privilege isn't an issue.

Your privileges make you as much part of the structural oppression of others as anyone else. I'm tired of people who stick their oppression in front of the privilege as a smokescreen. Your privilege exists, stop pretending it doesn't.

7. Basically assuming that everyone around you is a straight, rich, able bodied, cis, white, man.

This takes two forms, either people assume others have all the privileges until others justify how they're oppressed. Or as I've noticed increasingly people assume that having a privilege they don't confers all the privileges on someone; Especially when it comes to race.

If I woke up as a straight, rich, able bodied, cis, white, male I would be very fucking surprised. Yet it seems that a good chunk of the time I am treated by some SJ advocates as if I've magically become one without me or the world for that matter noticing.

Last night I got accused basically of being privileged in areas I'm not because I disagreed with someone in the same group. I don't recall saying to anyone they weren't mentally ill because they disagreed with me over it, probably because I didn't, but people said to me I wasn't a minority because I disagreed with them. This is still a problem even if you dislike me or disagree with my viewpoint.

8. Tone policing via "you must be perfectly social justicy to point out X problematic shit I said".

Nobody is a perfect social justice advocate, we're all floundering around trying not to be oppressive and to tackle oppression. If being a perfect social justice advocate was required to point out problematic shit? None of us would be allowed to do it.

In short, I don't need to be perfect to point out problematic shit you said, just as you don't need to be to tell me I'm saying problematic shit.

9. Treating any clash as if only one sides asshole behaviour matters, typically the side that isn't you.

If something problematic they say matters, so do the problematic things you say.

Personally I'm not perfect, I say problematic shit all the time, but frequently it's in response to problematic shit being denied as being problematic shit. Not that it justifies my fuck ups, but if you're going to stand there complaining about what I said because I'm frustrated and triggered as hell after two hours of you problematically defending problematic things you/someone else in your group said? You might want to acknowledge why I'm upset as well as how upsetting whatever ignorant shit I said was.

This especially applies if the statements you're defending are being defended on the basis of "People get angry about their oppression, so you shouldn't get upset about oppressive things they say while angry". Other minority people are allowed to be angry as well, it's not a privileged solely reserved for one minority.

So yes, basically I fucked up but there was a whole lot of fucking up to go around and while I'm sorry for my fuck ups? I'm not sorry for pointing out the fuck ups of others or that we ALL matter including people like me.

I want better than this shit. I want to work within a framework of social justice that doesn't believe oppressive shit is okay if you have the 'right' oppressions. I want responsible social justice led by people who acknowledge this shit. I want to work with people, not get screamed at because I told them to take their daggers out of the backs of people like me. I want a social justice where we have equal right to be ignorant and hurtful, but where we're all expected to face up to it, to tackle it and to at least try not to be ignorant and hurtful in future. I want a social justice where we can address problems without it turning into a bloody wankfest because only certain groups of people can be told they're being problematic.

I want a social justice where I can say "X is a problem" and get a discussion that respects everyone's needs, not "How dare you say X is a problem".

I'm sorry for some of the things I said, but I'm also sorry that we don't have better than a flawed framework.

Monday, 25 November 2013

It isn't just healing:

TW: for discussion of sexual assault, surviving and healing. http://feministing.com/2013/11/25/its-ok-to-take-the-time-you-need-to-heal-ok/ Is a good link, but it's incomplete.

It isn't just the time people need. Some of us need other things. Such as:

1. To not be under pressure to have to act devastated all the time and in public.

Some of us have healed, some of us don't want to publicly display our pain for the consumption of others. We especially don't need the pressure to act in a certain way or we'll be accused of being a fake. Not all of us cry and that is okay, what is not okay is expecting every survivor to be weepy.

2. To not get a rote lecture about how it isn't our fault or other platitudes.

If someone says they feel it's their fault, then it's time to comfort them and remind them it isn't. However some of us know that it wasn't out fault and we aren't ashamed. When we tell you about what happened and you launch into a lecture on how it wasn't our fault or any other platitudes? It just feels like your ears shut down beyond "sexual assault/abuse", because you clearly did not listen to us or see what we needed.

3. To not have you treat our normality as if it's shocking.

Even people who have not healed for the most part do not go through every second of every day thinking about the assault. We laugh, we have fun and sometimes we forget it, maybe for a moment, maybe for longer, regardless, we are more than just survivors, don't act like we have to be a survivor 24/7/365.

4. To not treat us like we're damaged forever.

I don't feel damaged, and I daresay many others share that feeling. Let us define this for ourselves.

In short, we're survivors and our healing is as individual as we are. Respect that.

Tuesday, 19 November 2013

Call out culture:

 TW: for discussion of suicidal impulses, bullying, PTSD and similar issues.

You should read: http://tigerbeatdown.com/2011/10/17/come-one-come-all-bloggers-bear-it-all-out-feminist-and-social-justice-blogging-as-performance-and-bloodshed/ The part on call out culture is spot on. It has become a performance and inherently toxic. I've been saying the latter for a while.

I've been a long time target of call out culture warriors. Between my Autism (inaccessibility of social justice tools) the fact I was born very very poor without the tools to learn (I didn't even have a computer until I was an adult) and severe depression/celiac rage (Which like my autism are never accommodated in social justice spaces). Well let's just say I've said a lot of ignorant stuff over the years and from day one? Many call out culture warriors decided I was positively evil incarnate and was doing it all on purpose.

Clearly in their minds they decided that I knew all the stuff that was inaccessible to me and therefore they also decided I was just saying ignorant things in order to hurt people, therefore I am evil. Once you get labelled as "evil", you don't shake it at all. You get zero accommodations (not that there are any for autism or mental health issues anyway). Everything you do or say is considered confirmation of how "evil" you are.

As you flounder at the edges of understanding? You get hammered over and over until you retreat in confusion, because "evil" isn't allowed to grope towards an understanding of it's own oppression and those of others, you get it now, or not at all.
Did I mention you aren't going to get it at all because call out culture is inherently hypocritical so much so that wringing coherent understanding out of it isn't possible and reaching your own understanding doesn't happen because the minute you try to articulate anything? You get attacked because once you're "evil" you can't possibly say anything right because everything you say is wrong by default, even the things you get right.

I spent years confused and very very alone, I tried to kill myself at least twice because of the severe bullying I experienced even when I hadn't said anything wrong. Apparently social justice? Doesn't apply to "evil" people. When we talk about our abuse or oppression? It's okay to not believe us, it's okay to say that since we don't act like a stereotypical victim, we're lying and this confirms that we're "evil" and therefore should be hammered when at our lowest.

When we talk about how prejudice and oppression impact our lives? We're lying. We don't even get to talk about our oppressions without getting attacked, I learned that when a whole bunch of "social justice advocates" sided with a hearing person who decided to tell me that MY hearing loss wasn't a disability.

Since I've managed to get myself some space to breath, my understanding has not only flowered, it's eclipsed imho that of many of the call out culture warriors who spent years putting me down, calling me a liar about my oppressions/abuse and putting so much pressure on me that they endangered my life repeatedly. I wonder how much more articulate I would be now if I'd had the last eight years to bloom instead of being hurt, confused, unaccommodated, oppressed and bullied by the call out culture warriors. I also wonder how many other people have been destroyed or lost to us because of it. How many brilliant essays never written, how many movements never started, how many minds are still prisoned by being deemed "evil" by those who enjoy the self righteousness call out culture infuses them with.

This is the cost of call out culture, there's a difference between saying "hey, what you just said is hurtful and here is why" and pack of people going for some of our most vulnerable people over and over.

Worst thing is? Many of the call out culture warriors also say problematic things all the time. But it's never a problem when they say oppressive things because the rest of the warriors rally around and defend them from even the politest explanation of why what they said hurts. They can carry this on for years, insulated entirely from ever considering that they are hurting people, meanwhile many of their victims have PTSD at best, and I'm sure a few have had their pain exceed their coping capacity and killed themselves.

Call out culture encourages bullying, it is not a good thing and it should not be part of social justice because there is nothing just about pushing someone to the point where they hurt themselves just to escape you.

Sunday, 10 November 2013

Improving Social Justice:

Each of these could be a post unto itself, but I'm keeping it short, just some of the biggest frustrations I have with how social justice advocates screw up.

1. Playing oppression olympics.

It is not a goddamn competition folks. All this does is give rise to a heirarchy that hurts our efforts. It also alienates the fuck out of people with multiple minorities when minority groups make them leave their other oppressions at the door or basically tell them that the group doesn't care about their other oppression(s) because X oppression is sooooooooo much more important/worse.

2. People who can endlessly talk about what they want in an ally without applying one scrap of it to themselves.

If you are willing to complain about how poor other people are at being allies, it really helps if you're an ally to others. I know way too many people who can go on for hours about what they expect in an ally, and hours more about how they don't have to be an ally in return.

Seriously, not asking much here, but when you expect people to champion your voice and support you, it helps if you listen to them in turn when it comes to not doing oppressive shit that affects them. I am really tired of people who are all like "Allies against X-ism need to do blah de blah" then follow it up with being racist/sexist/disabilist/homophobic/transphobic/otherwise bigoted as hell then being privileged wankstains when asked to cut it the fuck out.

3. People having a fit about the major assholes in X group and holding X group responsible for all of them, but then mysteriously failing to do so when it comes to their own group assholes.

If you expect X group to reject their Hugo (which they bloody well should do), you also should be prepared to tell your own Hugos to sod the hell off. Solidarity isn't overlooking the assholery of people just because they're "one of us", solidarity is sticking together against oppression, not sticking together IN oppression.

If a prominent speaker in your group is an asshole? Find a new fucking prominent speaker. You can do better than someone who shits all over other minorities and people from your group who have other oppressions.

4. It is not a zero sum game, equal rights are not a finite thing, don't act like they are.

There are more than enough rights to go around, if your only issue with the inequality in society is that you're not one of the privileged in the status quo, you're doing it wrong.

We can have it all, if X group gets rights, that doesn't mean Y group is automatically not going to get them.

5. Relatively privileged individuals acting like having a small amount privilege they don't have is the same as having them all.

There is no fucking privilege that turns someone into a straight, rich, able bodied, white, cis man. You either get born one or you get born someone with some level of oppression. Seriously if you have loads of privilege and one oppression, then no, X person with the one privilege you don't have and multiple oppressions is not more privileged than you, the privilege you don't have is truly not that spectacular.

6. Acting like somehow prejudice doesn't interact with oppressions.

Someone calling a straight, rich, able bodied, white, cis man a "cracker" is no big deal. It won't really hurt anything but his feelings, but he and his situation should not be your measure for how prejudice affects everyone else. Someone with multiple oppressions being subject to prejudice by someone with multiple privileges is going to take a much heavier hit from prejudice, because people with privilege can do more to inflict harm.

I'm so sick of seeing social justice warriors argue that prejudice magically isn't a problem if someone has at least one privilege, typically the privilege they don't have. It doesn't work like that, the more oppressed the person is, the more serious prejudice is. Just because it isn't formalised oppression doesn't mean it doesn't add to the burden folks carry along with oppression.

If you do any of these? You really need to rethink social justice and come back when you're not part of the problem.

Sunday, 3 November 2013

We are not your excuse:

It never fails, someone mentions a child screaming down the place in a store and the immediate answer is a lecture about how we shouldn't complain because "What if they're autistic".

This annoys me because:

1. Not every autistic is prone to loud screaming meltdowns. Many become quiet, cry quietly or simply shut down. By continually feeding the assumption that the howling kid is inevitably autistic, you're presenting a version of autism that is incomplete and downright wrong as a result. We are not a stereotype.

2. If every kid throwing a tantrum in a store was autistic, the vast majority of kids would be autistic. Only one in 150 are. Kids throw tantrums, it's a fact of life and most of them are NT. Ergo the default is likely to be an NT throwing a tantrum, not an autistic melting down.

3. It ignores that frequently when people do complain about a kid howling the place down, it's because the parents are basically not parenting. Apparently when there are four adults and one howling kid, it is seemingly impossible for one of them to take said howling kid out of the store. If I had a dime for every case I've seen of multiple adults and a screaming clearly NT kid who is being allowed to aurally assault everyone in earshot? I'd be able to afford a lavish holiday. A tantrum throwing kid can be loud and high pitched to the point of causing ear damage, they are physically painful to listen to. This isn't just a minor inconvenience, it can cause physical harm.

4. It's downright insulting to the many polite and quiet autistic children/adults, who will never receive any defense about their access needs. People are all too willing to excuse a NT brat because "he might be autistic", but when it comes to not being dicks to autistics who are not throwing ourselves on the floor and howling? That's considerably less likely. People will defend a parents right not to parent their entitled NT kid using my neurology as an excuse for them, they won't defend my right not to be assaulted. Perhaps you should consider that those being basically assaulted by said kid might be autistic, any given tantrum is far more likely to mean an autistic is being aurally assaulted by an NT than it is to be an autistic having a meltdown.

I understand that some parents of autistic children get judged hardcore, and I understand that parents of NT kids don't like being criticised when their kid throws a tantrum. But I don't think it's too much to ask that people not use my neurology as an excuse for the spoilt NT aurally assaulting me and that folks stop flat out ignoring that I and many more autistics who don't throw tantrums do exist. I also don't think it's too much to ask that parents take their tantruming kids somewhere that they're not aurally assaulting others, I know it's inconvenient, but you chose to have them, nobody else should have to be hurt by your choice.

Signed, the poor autistic who has lost yet more hearing in their ear because NT parents felt looking at paint was more important than dealing with their NT kid's tantrum which was hitting notes and levels that usually require ear protection when encountered in a job.

Saturday, 2 November 2013

Can we please hold this person responsible finally?

Trigger warnings for mention of suicide, bullying and oppression.

Undoubtly everyone remembers the Hugo Schwyzer debacle and how every single white feminist was expected to apologise for his shithead antics.

That I can live with, even though it's not like white presumed women with multiple oppressions like me are really the ones pushing those narratives.

But what I'm tired of living with is the fact that we're also expected to constantly swallow the oppressive actions of certain well off, able bodied, cis, WoC feminists and MoC, because their racial oppression is held as a trump card, and race is held more important than telling certain big name privileged PoC activists not to be Disabilist/Transphobic/Classist/insert oppressive ism when they are so. I'm not asking for all PoC to be held responsible for bad anti-social justice behaviour from big name PoC activists, but I am asking that the sort of shit Hugo pulled not be acceptable in PoC activists either.

I can count on one hand with four fingers and a thumb to spare the number of times I've seen acknowledgement from a straight/able bodied/cis/well off PoC after they said/did something oppressive, or seen them being pulled up by PoC for it if they won't stop being oppressive. (White privileged feminists ignore it since it isn't their oppression).

I am angry about the amount of times I've seen certain big name largely privileged PoC activists slut shame, harangue survivors (apparently "I believe her" means "so long as she's one of my group") spout disabilist language and justify it. I am angry about the notion that any amount of bullying is permissable so long as the bully is a a very privileged PoC and claims to be fighting oppression, I wasn't aware fighting racism required using disabilist slurs FFS.

I am angry about the fact that a big name WoC activist has repeatedly that I know of driven someone to the brink of suicide, for things like being open about their history abuse. Apparently bullying a survivor into nearly killing themselves is okay if you're really really convinced they're lying about being a survivor.

I'm angry about this, and I'm really angry that people still treat folks like Karnythia as if she isn't a problem.

Karnythia aka Mikki Kendall?

Has an ugly history of bullying people. She's part of a group that are well known for things like shaming female survivors for being afraid of men, for things like accusing survivors of lying, for bullying individuals to the point where some of their victims have landed up in hospital. I personally I know one and more than once I had to stop that person from cutting their wrists after Karnythia got through with them. I would not be surprised if some of the people she's bullied into disappearing didn't just disappear. If Karnythia does not have blood on her hands, it would be out of sheer luck.

She wants credit for something? Let her have credit for this behaviour of hers, let her have credit for every minute people have spent on the brink with only a thin life line because of her.

Let her have credit for making a survivor want to die after surviving horrific injuries and decades of abuse only to find that someone who proclaimed to be for social justice was only too happy to hammer home that nobody is ever going to believe that survivor, not even someone who claimed to be for social justice.

Let her have credit for embodying an hierarchical version of social justice that has nearly resulted in deaths. Let her have credit for being a flawed fallible human being and just as much part of the system and the problem at times.

Karnythia isn't the only one though. She's just the one who has had the biggest impact on survivors I know. We all need to be better, White feminism needs to do better, but the shit I've written about today? That also needs to fucking be addressed because social justice should be about fighting oppression not bullying people into killing themselves.

Wednesday, 28 August 2013

Let's talk about "cheap" food, or rather food that isn't cheap.

Food poverty is much more than just having £10 a week to spend on food.

Food poverty is having the food but not the time or physical energy to cook it. When you're working two jobs and looking after three kids, you don't have five minutes to sit down let alone thirty to chop veg for a homemade veg soup.

Food poverty is having the food but not the knowledge to cook it. Home economics has been woeful in this country in the last few years, many people can barely boil an egg, figuring out pulses is beyond them.

Food poverty is having the food, but not the equipment or fuel to cook it, a sack of chickpeas does no good if you're sitting in the dark with £0 on the meters.

Food Poverty is having just enough money to buy food but no decent shops nearby, it's when you can afford to buy cheek and skirt but cheek and skirt cuts aren't available because all the abattoirs are now grinding down these cheap cuts to make "gourmet" burgers. So the only cuts available to you are outside your budget. It's when you have a market but half the vegetables they sell have seen better days and the other half will only last a day or two when you get them home and you can't go to the market everyday for veg.

Food poverty is having just one little crappy refrigerator so you can't bulk buy and save money or store much food, did I mention you also can't go shopping everyday? So whatever tiny amount you get when you can go has to last you until you can next go.

Food poverty is having to go shopping so hungry that you faint in the store, because you haven't eaten in three days.

Food poverty is not being able to leave the house so having to spend out for home delivery and only being able to choose from a narrow selection of expensive stores that will deliver.

Food poverty is going to a food bank and finding nothing to you can eat unless you want to be violently ill. Food poverty is not being able to get to a food bank in the first place.

Food poverty is when you don't have the ability to chop fresh vegetables due to disabilities, it's when it's all you can do to crawl out of bed and stuff the first no-prep item you can reach into your mouth just to keep yourself going.

Food poverty is suffering from an illness like Celiac that means austerity cookbooks are at BEST 90% "I can't eat that" and typically 100% "I can't eat anything in here" because austerity cookery relies heavily on cheap staples like Pasta and plain wheat flour.

Food poverty is having spent so much of your life hungry that you no longer recognise the signs of hunger and have to be reminded to eat the food you have got.

Food poverty is when people who have none or few of these problems are put up as experts on being poor because your voice isn't even considered. When an expert is someone not like you who has only been hungry for a short time and never someone who is like you who has spent most of their life battling with food poverty.

Food poverty is when to get help you have to hand over the details of what you buy to someone who has no idea what living with your conditions is like, and you get to watch them frown and just know they are going to insist that you can easily cut your food bill and you know full well you can't because what they don't see is that you only eat one meal a day to ensure you have access to nutritionally dense food that won't make you sick.

Food poverty is more than having money to buy food, it's having access, having the ability to store and to cook. It's about being healthy to start off with. It's about all the things people don't think about.

Monday, 26 August 2013

Much ado about a girl called Jack.

Trigger warning for discussion of suicide and poverty.

Perhaps you've heard of a girl called Jack, a much feted face of "poverty porn", the acceptable face of "impoverished" people. What you won't have heard is how intensely problematic the tropes she plays into are.

Recently someone wrote an article on why she has a platform and is considered legitimate.

The other article talks about the politics of acceptability, but it didn't go far enough, it merely address how Jack is seen without addressing how Jack plays into it.


First off we have the title; This tactic would not work for anyone who wasn't a white, seemingly cis, able bodied, articulate, and perceived to be middle class person. You'll see from the comments that immediately many relatively privileged people clustered around her to "defend" her, because a privileged person's tears are the first thing privileged people see. It is not that I lack sympathy with that level of despair, it's that "Well I tried to kill myself" plays right into those aforementioned acceptability politics. It renders Jack "vulnerable" and rouses privileged people's instinct to defend her, she's one of theirs after all, not one of ours. Instead of sympathy, it becomes a rallying defense cry in the world of acceptability politics.

Then comes the accusation of how others think and feel about her, it is pure defensiveness. As she was to complain to me later, she's "sorry" for her privilege, this is a purely privileged move, as again it structures other people as being unreasonable and contains a plea for defense. It's also profoundly immature and defensive, I say this as someone who has pulled it in the past. Quite frankly, it's the sort of shit you say when you don't know any better and see no reason to learn better.

The next comments claim she doesn't respond to criticism, I've yet to see her let critical comments lie make of that what you will. She also completely fails to understand the other article in a blaze of immature defensiveness. Then again she works hard to be "acceptable", to stress what a good job she had, how hard she's worked to find work, and what a wonderful parent she is, and to say "I'm just like you" to middle class people, while running and hiding behind "but my life is crap" when criticised for stances or for the pandering. In short, she works at having a image of a what I call "poor but", not as being seen as poor, but being seen as:

Poor but Hardworking.
Poor but Unlucky.
Poor but Just like non-poor people.

And by default, poor but not like me or other poor people. She repeatedly emphasizes she does not belong to our group over and over. Whether or not Jack recognises this, she plays into the idea that she is an acceptable poor person, which means by default, we are not and she is not one of us. Jack plays right into the worst stereotypes about poverty without ever thinking about it, and when confronted with it? She runs and hides behind "but I'm poor, I've suffered", without it seems ever thinking that she's talking to people who are also poor and suffer.

She uses her suffering as a justification of how qualified she is to talk on poverty, but never considers the larger picture of poverty. Her future looks bright, many people who were born in poverty unlike Jack? We don't have a bright future.

The next section of it contains complaints from Jack because she apparently cannot understand that getting nasty comments is not the same as social judgement. She is indeed judged relatively lightly due to her privilege and conformity to the "good poor person" stereotypes. This is a demonstration of just how much privilege she has, that a few nasty comments loom so large in her world view that she cannot discern the difference between that and how much shit others with far less privilege get.

Then she spectacularly failed to understand food politics. Cheap is not necessarily the same as poor person's food. To prepare many of the foods Jack enjoys one requires knowledge and time, both things that poverty often renders in short supply. Not to mention being able bodied, there is a reason many poor disabled people rely on premade foods. In short, money is not the only barrier to diet. A impoverished mother working two jobs to keep her head above water probably doesn't have the time, energy or knowledge to whip up a Dhaal. Jack's food is cheap but it is does not erase those barriers, and thus it is not food every poor person can have. In short, that is why she lands up as the face of the squeezed middle not the face of ground in poverty.

Then we go onto a rant about validation. Jack has a real bee in her bonnet about validation it seems, it's why she stresses how poor she was over and over again. I suspect she's well aware that in poverty terms all she's taken is a short dip in the shallows of a lake of poverty some people have never been able to leave. She doesn't seem to get that her privilege grants her automatic validation and approval from the majority of society.

And then we go into poverty porn, another lavish description of just how hard Jack has had it. She doesn't seem to think that the people reading it might have just as bad stories to tell. The focus as always is on Jack and Jack alone. Jack's poverty is not my poverty, I realised this as I got to a description of "walking everywhere". Able bodied privilege on display, she lost me as a reader as I fondly remembered when I could walk everywhere but didn't have the energy to at 5st nothing and sank into memories of crushing from birth poverty. The pain of being hungry not for a year but for everyday of your life. Something Jack hasn't experienced and something I hope to her son doesn't experience.

Then she talks about her suicide attempt and the aftermath, and you know what I remember? I remember being in the same place and the lack of sympathy, I remember being stalked from the food bank and being berated by my landlord for wanting them to surrender the tapes to catch that guy. I remember being three days hungry and cold and still being to blame because some creepy guy tried to follow me home. I remember pulling out clumps of my hair and being unable to sleep because he was still out there. I remember the constant message of nobody cares, not sugary tea, because I am not acceptable, and never will be. I remember wanting to die when I was just a child. I remember people always being angry with my poverty and need because I am not acceptable and I remember that Jack plays into the beliefs that make it so. I remember that her body would be a tragedy, mine wouldn't even be noticed. I remember acceptability and who has it out of the two of us, and I remember that I am like the majority of poor people in this.

Jack constantly plays into "acceptability". She might not have created the idea, but she's complicit in it's perpetuation. By being the "good poor person" and "poor but", the need for the "bad poor person" is created and maintained. When Jack plays into that? She hurts people like me.

When we try to tell her she is doing so? She explodes into defensiveness and dumps her fans on our heads. This is why a girl called Jack is intensely problematic, her identity is built on a stereotype that hurts long term impoverished people, and she refuses to acknowledge that.

Thursday, 15 August 2013

The politics of "solidarity".

Or how multiple minorities are systematically silenced from objecting to bigotry within any given group by a hierarchy.

Solidarity is a very problematic concept within social justice circles, it's often used to excuse bigotry within circles. Those of us presumed to be women are encouraged not to object to the Transphobia/Racism/Disabilism/Classism in Feminism because it wouldn't be "solidarity" to call out our peers for being bigoted wankstains. Same for GLBTQ groups with disabilism and sexism in particular, I've been tossed from quite a few GLBTQ groups for pointing out slur usage that casually demeans mentally illpeople, disabled people and people presumed to be women. Apparently telling your peers that their genitals are disgusting is okay, but saying that's offensive and bigoted is not acceptable because it's not "solidarity".

The PoC community also suffers from this standard as well. With all other identities being seen as coming dead last.

The concept of "Solidarity" being more important than "divisiveness" aka objecting to problems within social justice isn't just limited to within minority groups though. It's become broadly incorporated into the bigger social justice society. Away from the bastions of bigoted thinking, individual social justice advocates come under tremendous pressure to tolerate bigotry from other minorities in the name of "solidarity". To the point where social justice is evolving a hierarchy of who is allowed to be bigoted to others based on who is thought to be more oppressed. So we end up with a case of "more oppressed than thou because my one oppression is worse than all of yours", which doesn't help.

Yet we consistently do not talk about the role "Solidarity" plays in actually dividing us. All my Identities are equally important to me, if someone demeans one, then they are also demeaning the one they share with me by saying I am not actually an equal and that my equality with them depends on me accepting them demeaning me in other ways. That is not acceptable, and this status quo needs to change for all people with multiple minorities, because true Solidarity is not saying shit that makes your peers feel awful. Minority members who piss all over members of their minorities that have other oppressions are the ones who lack in solidarity, not the minorities that point out this.

Monday, 12 August 2013

Apparently shit rises to the top.

 Trigger warning for mentions of abuse.

Social justice it seems has a really short memory when it comes to big names who used to be absolutely shitty.

One person I've recently seen being held up as a big name within certain sections, was part of a group responsible for some really awful behaviour, including invading communities where survivors talked about their experience, second hand arm chair diagnosing the abusers with mental illness and telling the survivors to basically shut up and that they shouldn't be talking about it because their abuser was clearly ill and not responsible for their actions, or outright calling people liars.

They jumped on survivors for doing whatever they needed to do to survive, criticizing people for actions committed while they were a child with a child's coping skills just trying to manage in an abusive environment. They policed the responses of survivors constantly, didn't regret something bad you did to survive while a kid? You're an awful person. Didn't act broken enough? You're lying.

They piled on women survivors who were scared of men for being "sexist".

This person in short has a long long history of basically shitting all over survivors especially survivors belonging to groups they don't belong to. Yet over and over, they're held up as an example of social justice. They talk about solidarity, but they have none for anyone who doesn't have the same oppressions as them.

And yet, they'll never be outed for any of this shit because this shit is seen as exclusively the domain of certain groups they don't belong to. They are no worse than others, but their extra minorities basically act as a shield against anyone ever realising that for many of us? That person was a Hugo.

Hugo is getting flack despite the ignorants pushing back against it, this person has never received one drop of flack for any of the shitty stuff they've done or said, and they probably never will.

I could name them but if I did, they wouldn't get shit for anything they've done, I would get shit for daring to "attack" a "true social justice advocate" because that is what they're seen as, but to me? They'll always be a Hugo. I will never trust them, and I will never stand in solidarity with any group that fetes them because such a group can never be in solidarity with me when it harbours a Hugo within. I have about as much desire to expose myself to that level of toxic shit as I have to taking a swim in sewage.

Sunday, 11 August 2013

So you're a minority who said something fucked up?

Our example? Someone last night tweeted:

"Yes. When you HARM people, sometimes the conscience you try to reject turns on you. You get sick. Your health worsens."

I saw it and responded to it immediately pointing out that it was problematic, the response to that was even worse, but first I'm going to explain why it's problematic.

Firstly, there is a huge problem with people believing that disability and illness is caused by things people do, if you're fat, it's your weight even though disability often causes weight in reality, if someone thinks you're an asshole, then they often see it as "karma". That statement reinforces this notion even if the person didn't intend it to do so.

It also reinforces the notion that there are deserving sick people who became sick through no fault of their own, and undeserving sick people who are responsible for their own illness because of what they did even if the person didn't intend it to do so. Neither of those notions need feeding, they're a massive pain in the ass as it is. Plenty of people get sick for no reason whatsoever and some of them are assholes.

The person claimed it was a known psychological phenomenon? That is bullshit of the highest order. Some of the examples given like Ulcers were complete basic bullshit 101. Ulcers? Aren't caused by psychological issues, they're caused by Bacteria. The only thing that being conflicted or stressed can do? Is lower your immune system making you more likely to develop one, IF and only IF you already have the bacteria, no bacteria, no ulcer.

Secondly, it's basically unprovable that physical illness is caused by specific actions, there have been a few dramatic cases where Somatoform disorders were caused by psychological issues, however the reason is usually pretty clear cut, being things like extreme long term abuse or severe psychological stress. You cannot get this from just being an unthinking asshole.
Most illnesses or disabilities have multiple causes. Someone can have the gene for something and may never develop it, someone else might not and might develop it. Illness is a complex entity at best and ONLY a psychologist/psychiatrist would even have a chance at knowing enough about someone to venture a single psychological cause for their illness and they probably wouldn't because they know better.

Thirdly, the whole science of illness caused by psychological stress, is pretty damn shaky at best, and yes problematic in and of itself, often used as an excuse to label and drug patients whose illness or disability is rare or unusual enough that the first three or so attempts to figure it out end up drawing blanks. It is seriously over diagnosed and not at all common with many people 'diagnosed' with it later being discovered to have been misdiagnosed and actually having a physical reason for their illness or disability. It has been studied for thirty years and the experts still can't agree on it. Lay people who know nothing about the condition or about the research certainly should not be using it to draw lines between being an asshole and being sick.

So yes, it's problematic, and really triggery to people who've been subject to it wielded by people who didn't understand it. I spent over a decade misdiagnosed, untreated and dismissed because a doctor read a study in an area he didn't understand and when the first blood tests didn't show any obvious cause, he put me down along with most of his patients as being 'hysterical' (He was sexist and did it primarily to female patients) and diagnosed somatoform disorder. That involved a lot of pain and stress, so yes, I'm going to speak up when anyone feeds the socialised myths that many would be doctors take with them into medical school and then into their surgeries, and that many older doctors have picked up in place of 'hysteria' as a medical diagnosis for "patient is female and no obvious problem can be found".

The response though by an able bodied person and others upon being asked not to feed these ideas?

First they ignored that I was articulating my experience of my oppression in favour of claiming they didn't say anything of the sort/context/I didn't understand. As painful quite frankly as it is to get that from someone who has a lot of privilege, when it comes to someone who knows what it is like to be treated like that? It's extra hurtful and frustrating. I expect the cis, able bodied, white guy to pull that behaviour, but I also expect the person with more than one minority to remember what it's like when privileged people don't listen to them over their oppression.

If another minority pulls you up about something you said that affected them? You should treat them as you would have others treat you when they say something that affects you.

Then they claimed I was being bigoted against them, for what? Asking them not to shit on me? If that counts as bigotry now, the entire SJ movement is screwed.

Then more parties waded in.

I got accused of being selfish and not caring about the other person's oppression. This is funny since what the other side was basically saying was "Shut up, we don't care about your oppression". I do care about that person's oppression, enough that I tamped down the pain, anger and trigger enough to explain that it was problematic and to remain relatively polite in the face of their ignorant behaviour, when what I really wanted to do was to let it all out, and burst into tears on top of that. Those notions cause me serious pain, and to be blunt, was the situation reversed, I have no doubt that the other parties would think nothing of expressing all their pain at whatever shitty thing I said by ripping into me hardcore.

I got the "Boot!straps" lecture, aka "I can deal with it, so should you" from one party who didn't have any physical illness. Seriously, it was just a cascade of every type of shitty behaviour many social justice advocates complain about when privileged people do it to them, only done by people who were supposedly my compatriots.

My point? If you are oppressed and find this shit frustrating when it's done to you, don't do it to others. If you do? You're being a hypocritical asshole and need to go back to SJ 101 until you are no longer one.

Saturday, 10 August 2013

Hugo and mental health.

Last Night Hugo Schwyer had a public mental breakdown on twitter. Please note, nothing Hugo has done is defensible, his actions have been deeply racist, sexist and appropriative. This post has nothing to do with advocating forgiveness for him or excusing him, but it is about not feeding harmful tropes about mental illness and using him as an excuse to do so.

I recognise that people are angry with him and they have every right to that anger, but the following things harm all mentally ill people and are not appropriate in any way.

1. Declaring that he isn't really having a breakdown.

Quite apart from the fact that to fake it that well, he would need to be an amazing actor? People having breakdowns should ALWAYS be believed. It's no different to survivors of anything else. Once we state someone is lying about something like mental illness, we set a standard for believing people, this is a problem. In fact, the SJ community has a huge issue with this since it happens constantly, I've seen clearly suicidal people bullied because during in a breakdown they were deemed assholes and therefore not worth believing.

There is nothing about believing he is seriously ill that implies anyone has to forgive or forget any of the shit he's pulled or the hurt he's caused. His actions and words still hurt many many people, and they are still unforgivable even in light of his breakdown.

This attitude of "you need to be this social justicy/not deemed an asshole to be believed about your experiences" will kill someone eventually if it hasn't already. This is a dangerous attitude to be frank.

2. Any notion that his actions while in the breakdown are manipulative.

I'm not talking about his prior actions, just the ones when he had the actual break down, it's called a breakdown for a reason. Calling his actions manipulative just feeds into the old trope about mental illness being a form of manipulation. Mentally ill and learning disabled people have struggled with this dismissal for a long time; Feeding it is problematic.

Have it from someone who has been manic and who has a combined form of depression that gets really bad when it hits? You are in no fit state to manipulate anyone when you are like that. You aren't even in a fit state to know that you are unfit to do or know anything. Yes, it can be self centered, but it's also not under your control, it's like your personal little demon has taken over and is pulling your strings. You are incapable of knowing precisely what you're doing, you meet the standard for an inability to consent to anything. That's why we have sectioning, because people in the middle of breakdowns are severely compromised mentally.

To be blunt, even if he was faking or being deliberately manipulative which I doubt, it is better to consider it to be a real breakdown than to send the message to mentally ill people that if you think they're an asshole, you will be disabilist to them when they're at their most fragile. Last night twitter scared and triggered the hell out of me, I nearly suffered a breakdown of my own because of all the people I thought I could trust or that I thought knew better who were feeding both ideas.

This doesn't mean what he said and did during the breakdown can't be hurtful in and of itself, because no matter his intention or mental state, he can still do things that hurt others. Someone killed by someone is still dead even if their killer is legally insane.

When I explained to some of them that it was problematic I got the following which reveals problematic ideas:

1. You're just interested in defending him, or if you're not with us, you're on his side.

No. I get that people are angry with him, I am as well, but pointing out that breakdowns must be believed and that mentally ill people do not have the insight to manipulate people when in them is not defending him. It is defending myself and others from disabilist stereotypes that harm us. What he has done is unforgivable and should never be forgotten, but his assholery does not justify indiscriminately hurting all mentally ill people.

2. But you're policing what PoC say.

Let me make this clear, I get angry all the time about disabilism and other bigotries, but I always always try to remember that what I might say in that anger can and has at times been hurtful to other minorities. My anger does not justify me saying something that hurts another group simply because I am angry at one of their group.
Even angry I do my best to walk the edge between expressing that anger and not oppressing others, and yes, I don't always manage it, sometimes I do say oppressive shit in anger that hurts other people, and let me make this clear, when I've said something racist because I'm angry about a bigoted PoC I encountered? People of color do exercise their right to tell me that was some awful racist shit I just said and nobody ever says they're policing what I say about my oppression no matter how they express it because it's understood that PoC as a minority get to say "hey that isn't cool" when they get hurt even when it's to someone angry about oppression.

However when it's the other way around and some privileged person of color (since that's the one oppression I don't have being white) is dumping all over a group I belong to and they don't? I have yet to see anyone acknowledge that I also have a right to say "Hey, you're hurting me as well, could you not do that?" no matter how polite I am about explaining it, and yes, I always try to be polite because I do understand that people angry about oppression are in pain and I think it would be inappropriate for me to scream at people in pain even if they hurt me. Sad thing is I can't claim to have ever received the same consideration when in pain myself and someone needed to pull me up about something.

I don't enjoy having to pull people up on this stuff in the first place and I'd rather not feel I have to, but it is still the right of minorities to object to the problematic stuff other minority people say even when those other minority people are talking about their oppression. Pointing out someone said something oppressive should never be considered policing, because there's no need to dump on other minorities while expressing your anger at the harm someone has done or is doing to you.

3. You're not thinking about the mental health of others.

Yes, I am, I do not however think that means I don't get to defend my own mental health and that of others from what others said. If you're demanding I sacrifice my health and possibly even my life rather than object to someone feeding hurtful ideas they don't need to feed? You're kinda being an asshole.

There is no part of being angry with a shitstain like Hugo that is means someone's mental health will be harmed if they don't say things that hurt mentally ill people. There is plenty to talk about that isn't problematic, expressing that you're angry and hate him as a person, talking about his privilege in all other respects, criticising his lack of recognition of the WoC he hurt, criticising that he was so enabled by the white feminist community/patriarchy to hurt so many people, saying you don't accept the apologies, seeking support and comfort from your friends and allies. Talking about his prior bullying behaviour and the reality that he's been a shitstain for years doesn't hurt mentally ill people.

In short, nobody is asking anyone to let him off the hook for years of sustained shitty oppressive behaviour. The guy is an grade A asshole and has hurt people dreadfully, but the comments about mental health being slung around hurt as well. Please could we also have a conversation about that and efforts to tackle the harm caused?

Friday, 2 August 2013

"context", the new "Intent", intersectional fail.

Or how to fail at intersectionality. The following responses to "er, please don't do that, it's problematic" are not appropriate:

1. Arguing that context matters and that you didn't say anything oppressive and that others didn't understand the "context".

Seriously, things like say the usage of disabilist slurs as insults can never ever have context that renders them non-oppressive. Context is not magic, much like intent is not magic. Even if you think your context neutralises the problematic elements of a term or idea, if a member of the minority who is affected says otherwise, you should listen.

2. Pulling a full on guilt trip, and trying to frame "hey, this is a problem" as saying you totally fail at intersectionality.

Seriously, I shouldn't have to reassure you that I value your other opinions when I feel the need to ask you not to do something that hurts me or anyone else. Any social justice advocate can write amazing essays that we want to read but still make mistakes that result in a "could you not?".

The world is not divided into perfect social justice advocates and total assholes. You are allowed to fall in the middle and you probably will. We will all fail at some point, it doesn't mean we're bad people, just that we made a mistake and need to rethink such actions in future. When I ask you not to do something and tell you why it hurts, all that is required is that you listen and absorb the information, not that you reach for the hair shirt.

3. Arguing that because you were talking about your oppression when you used whatever problematic phrase or word, that criticising it is derailing and bigoted.

Derailing means attempts to distract attention or to complete hijack the discussion. When I say to you that X is a problem and explain why it's a problem, I don't need a huge long discussion or you to focus solely on that. Not doing it again will suffice. All you are required to do when an intersection in what you said is pointed out is to listen and adjust accordingly. People should not feel obliged to tolerate oppressive comments about their minority just because you're talking about your oppression.

Being asked to consider the harm you're doing to oppressed people, especially in areas where you're privilege is not a derail just because you did the harm while tackling your own oppression.

More intersectional fail is in the propensity of some people to make sweeping comments about the experiences of groups they aren't part of. People do not get to decide the experience of oppressions experienced by others. For example white people do not get to decide how People of color experience racism. Not only does this apply to all oppressions? It also applies to the experience of where privilege intersects with oppression.

From my own perspective sometimes I see People of color try to define the experiences of white minorities. This is especially painful when People of color who are Straight/Rich/Not disabled/Cis/male individuals decide to define how GLBTQ/Poor/Disabled/People seen as women who are also white experience their oppressions.

The sweeping comments made by the small group of people of color who do try to define the experiences of white minorities are usually based on what appears to be an idea that white skin gets us treated as straight, rich, able bodied, cis men automatically. It doesn't work that way quite frankly, oppressions stack, and privilege is never a free automatic negation of any and all oppressions.

A poor white person is still seen as a poor person and treated as such, we still have to deal with the scrounger rhetoric, we just don't have to shoulder racism along with it,though we may have to shoulder multiple other oppressions that affect all racial groups. White privilege is not and never will be a free pass from other oppressions, it simply means you're not oppressed racially. Having white privilege means as a poor person I won't be racially profiled, but I will still be subject to class profiling. I've never been and never will be followed around a shop because of my skin color, I have however been physically picked up and thrown out of one simply because I was known to be poor. (Which makes me wonder how that shop treated impoverished PoC if they treated me that badly).

A white disabled person is still subject to disabilism. They won't be refused a job because of their skin color, but will be refused one because of their disability. Having white skin won't grant them the job automatically any more than being able bodied would get a person of color a job automatically.

Regardless of what group you belong to remember that privilege is not a free pass to the land of candy and unicorns for people who are also minorities. The only people who are entirely free of oppression are Straight, Christian, Rich, Able bodied, White,  Cis Men.

Saturday, 27 July 2013

White womanhood, racism and the cycle created.

Or Intersectionality, we fucking need it.

Last night I read:


As you can see two very different viewpoints on the "scary black man", but never shall the twain meet. The latter is condemned as racist, the former as sexist. But they should meet because they do intersect.

Firstly what we need to talk about is not simply Questlove's constant awareness of the "threat" he represents to women, but also the way that awareness in him and other  men of color affects who interacts with those seen as women and who doesn't. The "scary black man" which also includes other men of color is a trope that feeds on itself.

If you have two men of color, one of whom is a stand up guy who would never rape someone and who is aware of the "scary man of color trope", and the other who is a rapist and who doesn't care if he's seen as scary because he doesn't regard women as people? It is the latter who primarily approaches white women and those seen as white women, the former is usually busy trying not to scare her and worrying about the consequences if he does. Understandably, this means the ones white women and those seen as women as a group usually end up interacting with are going to be the latter.

Yet when we talk about the men of color, black or otherwise who have approached us and acted badly, PoC often react as if those men represent all black men, because the distortion caused by the effects of racism is unacknowledged. I said last night that 80% of the men of color who have approached me have proven to be a threat, so I do regard a man of color who approaches me as more likely to be a threat because it is the ones who are threats who are more likely to approach me. The response was "how dare you say 80% of black me are threats", as if all men of color are black and would approach me, when the majority of men of color don't because of the thoughts Questlove talks about.

This is why "white women should be less racist and trust men of color who approach them" fails, because it's based on the idea that the men of color who approach white people seen as women aren't going to primarily be the ones no person seen as woman should trust and currently that's not the case. White people seen as women trusting every black guy approaching them wouldn't tackle racism because the decent ones would still hang back because of white men's racism, but it would give the assholes free reign to hurt people, which would simply justify the "scary man of color" trope.

Secondly we need to talk about the fact that though there was no white woman involved on the night when George Zimmerman killed Trayvon, white women are still brought into it because society as a whole still assumes that when white men attack black men, it is in defense of white women. It's part of the structural justification for white men's violence against people of color, and even people who aren't white men end up buying into it and talking about white women's place in racism to the exclusion of white man's creation and maintenance of it. We should talk about white woman's racism as well, but not as if it's the cause and root of what Zimmerman did.

Thing is, even if there had been a white woman there when Trayvon was killed, Zimmerman's actions wouldn't have been in her defense, but in defense of white male privilege and white male entitlement. The man of color whatever his race is always viewed by white men as a threat to the personally perceived racial superiority of white men. There is nothing about the "defend the white woman" that is beneficial to white women or those seen as women. It's all smoke and mirrors to disguise that white women and those seen as women are still seen as mere property in a world that accords value based on what white men think.

Superficial value is not actual value, everything about the notion of white womenhood frames white women and those seen as women as property of white men. It chains us to a pedestal that serves only to benefit white men. White people who society sees as women are viewed as pure because we are seen as belonging to white men. The notion that places white womanhood as the province of the Madonnas is inherently infantilising and places white people seen as women as children who need the protection and guidance of the white man.

Thirdly white people who aren't straight, rich, able bodied, cis men, We need to talk about how this damn white pedestal doesn't actually benefit anyone and everyone including white people seen as women need to stop buying into the notion that the mantle of white privilege is worth keeping for anyone who isn't a rich, straight, able bodied, cis man. The pedestal is actually a hobble we pay a price for, the price people seen as women pay is being seen as owned instead of being people. We need to strike it off and reject the superficial straight, white, able bodied, cis male offer of privilege in favour of standing with everyone else who isn't him and telling him to fuck the hell off with his bullshit hierarchy that only serves him, because anything less than equality for all is bullshit.

White privilege for those seen as women is nothing to be grateful for or to cling to, it's being begrudgingly given a thin blanket in exchange for our humanity while watching white men hoard thick down quilts when it is coldest. It's a thin gruel meanly handed out in return for our humanity while white men feast.

Our humanity should not be for sale, and especially not for what are mere scrapings we can't even share with others. White privilege is a fucking mugs game if you aren't a straight, rich, able bodied, cis man. It needs dropkicking out of the window, same for other privileges which are a thin and mean unless you have all or most of them, we need to reject them, because equality? That's the real prize, equality would benefit everyone apart from straight, rich, able bodied, white, cis man. It would benefit our lives and improve them far beyond privilege does. We cannot settle for less, especially not at the expense of others.

Fourthly we need to talk about full intersectionality. I've noticed a distinct tendency for the social justice world to grasp intersectionality only in terms of how one person's oppressions interact within their lives. Never in terms of how their privilege interacts with their oppression. Privilege is often viewed in isolation, so when we talk about the issues with white women, black men and racism, often sexism is dismissed entirely, and the white people seen as women are treated as if somehow white privilege in the situation makes them into a straight, white, able bodied, rich cis man. Questlove did this, he didn't consider the casual sexism in what he wrote it seems, just as Kim Foster did not examine the racism embedded in hers, and those supporting them have done the same.

Nor do we talk about the impact privilege has on how people are viewed by those oppressed apart from the anger the oppressed feel. For example, white womanhood frames those seen as women as property of white men; but we never it seems consider how it and racism frames those seen as women as prizes in a war that white men created against people of color, or that it's taught to men of color as well as held by white men. So the bodies of those seen as women become battlegrounds for the rights and privilege of men.

Currently I think intersectionality is still in it's infancy, the full scope it is unexplored. We need better than this, and we need to listen to each other, because the monster that is oppression doesn't exist in isolation, so we need to come out of our isolation.

Wednesday, 17 July 2013

Intersectionality and Juror B37

Much has been made of Juror B37's comments in race contexts, but her gender and indeed the involvement of gender in the general has been routinely ignored in some ways. The question of "Black Masculinity" and "white womanhood" is an inherently intersectional one.

White women and those presumed to be women are socialized to be the white man's helpmeet as it were. We are constantly bombarded with the idea that our place is behind white men, uplifting them, supporting them and yes forgiving them their trespasses. We're taught our place is to please them, to defend them, to basically near worship at the temple of white maleness. We aren't given the same instructions about men of color.

As for the notion of "white womanhood", let's make it clear, it's a patriarchal notion as well as a way to socialise white society towards racism. The notion of "white womanhood" contains a lot of bad, and it isn't just taught to white men and women, it is taught to everyone.

Firstly it frames white women's sexuality as child like, and therefore white women/those seen as women as children. Children who need constant protection, who cannot affirmatively consent to sex. White women and those seen as women have constantly been portrayed as infantile, and the notion of "white womanhood" is no different. People in general respond differently to a threat to a child, than to an adult, even if the "child" is in fact a fully grown woman. We worship the innocence of children and hold them as having higher value because of it, while at the same time holding them as lesser and requiring our guidance and control. So "White womanhood" inherently devalues us as people with our own minds at the same time as it is superficially elevating our perceived value.

Secondly it frames white women/those seen as women as inherently property of white men/those seen as men. Based on my experience I think there is a perception because of this, that white bodies which society designates as female are part of the system, not bodies belonging to people. So the white presumed female body for some MoC ends up representing the rights they are routinely denied, in short, What men of color experience sometimes results in them viewing people like me as a faceless weak point in the system they want to conquer and to conquer the "weak point", some men of color use the only weapon they know they have, their gender privilege. Given this, the question of if "Black Masculinity" is predatory and dangerous is quite complex.

Thirdly it isn't about us, it's about an idea, a veritable straight jacket we are forced to fit into for being white and having a Uterus. It's about the idea that a woman who has a relationship with a man of color is inherently soiled by it. It's about slut shaming at it's finest, where slut is the act of having anything to do with men of color. Women and those seen as women come under tremendous pressure to not be "sluts" due to the negative consequences. It's little wonder that "white womanhood" is excellent aversion therapy, it puts us neatly on a pedestal and hedges us with rules so tight that to twitch is to fall off and to fall off is to be in some serious trouble.

Sunday, 14 July 2013

Criticising UKIPs "disabled policy".


These are the meagre disabled policy proposals made by UKIPs spokesperson for the disabled, a disabled person so privileged that she doesn't feel that she has to listen to the majority of disabled people.

They propose to fix the WCA, that is it, and the only thing they want to hear from us is "we support you" or "labour/the tories suck for what they've done". UKIP has no interest in fixing what they do wrong, they want to paint themselves as the disabled people's friends without actually bothering to change their spots. Which is why if you suggest that they are part of the problem, they go ballistic and accuse you of being bigoted against them, for example apparently I am racist against UKIP, I had no idea that political parties were races.

Let's talk first about what is missing from UKIPs proposals:

1. No proposal to tackle disabilism in the media, lies and distortions by the media are a leading cause of hate crimes against disabled people. It does no good to change the WCA with the media shrieking "scroungers" every five minutes.

2. No proposal for tougher access legislation or anything to make companies comply with the regulations, like say a watchdog. The current lot we have as basically toothless and relies on disabled people to sue.

3. No discussion of legal aid being available to disabled people who need to sue for basic rights.

4. No discussion of the cuts to social services, the impact or rolling them back.

5. No discussion of the appalling level of pay care workers earn for one of the most vital jobs for many disabled people.

6. No proposal to tackle the rampant disabilism in medicine and the NHS that leads to the UK having an 13 year average diagnosis wait time for long term and chronic conditions. No diagnosis, no support is the reality for far too many disabled people who wait over a decade to be taken seriously.

7. No proposals to center disabled people and disabled people's voices.

8. Most damning of all, no proposals on how to tackle the rampant disabilism, sexism and racism in UKIP itself.

I came across Star when she complained on Twitter that disabled people weren't coming forward to talk to UKIP.


My response: https://twitter.com/Subimaginati/status/356436139097325568 I questioned the need for minorities to come to the political party rather than the political party to educate itself and approach the minorities.

The responses to me? Here's some of the worst and typical ones:

https://twitter.com/Davejf27/status/356440366012051456 Yup, I'm apparently bigoted against a political party because I don't trust them because their members have been ablist and sexist to me and others in the past and racist to people of color.

https://twitter.com/DavidSidney/status/356441192579338241 Typical "you criticised what we're doing so I'm going to derail about what bad shit other political parties do". Hint UKIP, if your best defense is "Other people suck", then you have a problem with bigotry.

https://twitter.com/Davejf27/status/356441690082521088 More "You're a bigot", keep this in mind, since this is the guy who later on insisted he was being reasonable.

https://twitter.com/DavidSidney/status/356441836031709184 More abuse. This is a running theme because at the heart of the responses is an attitude that the lived experiences of disabled people and our needs aren't important and unless they fit the agenda of "normal" people. And if those lived experiences of disabled people mean we're critical of "normal" people then we must be attacked rather than listened to because our criticism is that much of a threat.

https://twitter.com/star_pumpkin/status/356441924472803328 Apparently UKIP's token disabled person thinks I'm of no help to disabled people because I said that UKIP hurts disabled people.

https://twitter.com/DavidSidney/status/356442667795746816 Translation: "My experiences as a non-disabled person are more important than the experiences of actual disabled people so disabled people are wrong".

https://twitter.com/DavidSidney/status/356442799580782592 "Prove the racism" Yet another demand that minorities prove that our experiences are true before privileged people will treat them as such.

https://twitter.com/cosby_laura/status/356443043597000706 Apparently this person reckons I'm a druggy. Typical privileged dismissal of minority experiences.

https://twitter.com/DavidSidney/status/356443166116806656 Translation: "Everyone else is bad, so we're innocent!"

https://twitter.com/Davejf27/status/356443381813092352 "I work with people like you" Yeah, and? This is another "my experience is more valuable than the experience of actual disabled people".

https://twitter.com/invisiblehand11/status/356443624378085378 I am accused of being racist and sexist.

https://twitter.com/DavidSidney/status/356443849171800064 Promise to have it dealt with, this did not happen as you will see, instead the person argued that every example wasn't really disabilism.

https://twitter.com/davyjo2111/status/356444060631826433 Translation: You're bitter.

https://twitter.com/BrightonPatriot/status/356444380388790272 I'm called racist and blocked because apparently saying UKIP has a problem with racism is racist.

https://twitter.com/DavidSidney/status/356444905922498562 Conspiracy theory much? More like your parties shitty members give you a bad reputation all by themselves.

https://twitter.com/star_pumpkin/status/356445206905761794 Star is supposedly a lawyer, and thinks that saying a political party is racist, sexist, and ablist is libelous. I'd love to see the look on a judge's face if she presented it to him as that.

https://twitter.com/star_pumpkin/status/356445544639512576 I'm accused of not telling her anything. Apparently saying "disabled people don't trust UKIP because UKIP members say horrible disabilist things" is not telling her anything.

https://twitter.com/cosby_laura/status/356445975696510979 Apparently what I am doing is useless, disabled people should never speak up, it's useless. Says it all really.

https://twitter.com/AmpersUK/status/356446063722364929 "Stupid" and "imbeciles" two disabilist slurs.

https://twitter.com/ThomasHoof1/status/356446109675159552 Translation: The viewpoints of able bodied people who work with disabled kids are more important than those of actual disabled people.

https://twitter.com/DavidSidney/status/356446303783354369 Again, a demand for proof, because god forbid a disabled person's viewpoint be considered valid.

https://twitter.com/davyjo2111/status/356446486772449280 Yes, they did just imply I belong in an asylum.

https://twitter.com/DavidSidney/status/356446848057212928 Yup, more "you're an icky bigot, if we keep calling you this, we don't have to actually examine what you're saying".

https://twitter.com/AmpersUK/status/356447413646532609 Disabilist slur "Idiot".

https://twitter.com/NigelParkin3/status/356447587152310273 Disabilist slur "Idiot".

https://twitter.com/davyjo2111/status/356447961733017602 Disabilist slur "Idiot" directed at a disabled person.

https://twitter.com/cosby_laura/status/356448200674127872 Translation: Quick quick derail at her, I feel reality impinging.

https://twitter.com/__GriffCo__/status/356448246886965248 Admits the problem, but tries to blame it on a small minority. This is basically a "but we're not like that" argument.

https://twitter.com/DavidSidney/status/356448303493292033 Apparently I can't think for myself.

https://twitter.com/DavidSidney/status/356448700828102657 Tone policing "you should speak in a positive way" and implying I'm prejudiced because I smelt the stink of disabilism. Oh and I clearly didn't make my own mind up from all the experience I've had with UKIPpers, no sirree.

https://twitter.com/ThomasHoof1/status/356448752531279873 More "I know disabled people and I'm not like that" in response to me pointing out that UKIP members often dehumanise us.

https://twitter.com/ross_crispin/status/356449252140003330 Short version: "We're not disabilist, you're mean".

https://twitter.com/NigelParkin3/status/356449296155017216 Translation: Deny Deny Deny, Danger Will Robinson, Deny! Cos hey if you say UKIP members aren't bigoted after they've been throwing slurs at and dogpiling a disabled person for disagreeing with them, it totally makes it so they're not bigoted despite them being bigots.

https://twitter.com/ross_crispin/status/356449447066091520 This tweet is hilarious and hypocritical given all the UKIP members who called me a bigot and dismissed my experiences with UKIP's racism/sexism/disabilism as bigotry on my part.

https://twitter.com/__GriffCo__/status/356449613248593920 More "I work with disabled people". Seriously, nobody gives a shit if you do, are you disabled? No? Then you don't get to decide our experiences for us.

https://twitter.com/BrightonPatriot/status/356449989829996545 Disabilist slur "crazy".

https://twitter.com/DavidSidney/status/356450352301740032 Disabilist comment saying I need therapy for criticising UKIP.

https://twitter.com/__GriffCo__/status/356450379015270401 Another empty promise to do something about disabilism in the membership.

https://twitter.com/AmpersUK/status/356451220514275328 Another "I know disabled people so I get to dismiss your experiences and privilege my own".

https://twitter.com/ross_crispin/status/356451476119363589 Disabilist slur, calling me deluded.

https://twitter.com/ross_crispin/status/356451572038897664 More slurs, deluded and "idiot" again, plus a derail "you're looking to be offended".

https://twitter.com/ross_crispin/status/356451816994648066 Claims to be visually impaired. I'm betting he wear glasses. Hardly one of the primo targets for disabilism.

https://twitter.com/paultm/status/356451938969190402 "You're not being fair". Because disabled people who are hurt by UKIPs shit are always obliged to be "fair" and nice to them.

https://twitter.com/ross_crispin/status/356452875012022272 "You're looking to be offended!"

https://twitter.com/ross_crispin/status/356453164586778624 Translation: It's okay to use slurs if I don't think they're slurs, watch me argue that a diagnosis used within the last twenty years is old enough that it's okay.

https://twitter.com/ross_crispin/status/356453397899124736 Translation: "Yeah, you don't have a right to your own experiences, let me a far more "normal" person tell you what is and isn't disabilism".

https://twitter.com/__GriffCo__/status/356453595153055745 Translation: "Slurs are only slurs if they know the person they're flinging them at is disabled. Slurs totally can't feed the casual dehumanisation of disabled people."

https://twitter.com/DavidSidney/status/356453719157645312 Slurs "Insane" "Nutter".

https://twitter.com/ross_crispin/status/356453730939445250 Translation: "We can't manage without slurs!1!!! *panics*"

https://twitter.com/__GriffCo__/status/356454220272119809 Translation: "But people call my able bodied self these slurs all the time and they don't bother me, so how can they bother you?"

https://twitter.com/paultm/status/356454951578386433 Yeah, I have to give Star a chance to win my political affiliation, but she doesn't have to take the time to listen to me it seems.

https://twitter.com/__GriffCo__/status/356454993538187264 Derail: "you're looking to be offended/interrogating it wrong".

https://twitter.com/gase_edwards/status/356455180935499776 Slur: "deluded".

https://twitter.com/ross_crispin/status/356455208294952960 Slur: "deluded".

https://twitter.com/DavidSidney/status/356455393154707457 Slur: Derivative of "idiot".

https://twitter.com/__GriffCo__/status/356455773146054656 Translation: "I'm trying, can't you see me trying so very hard, it's not my fault I'm dismissing instead of listening because I'm trying!1!!"

https://twitter.com/ross_crispin/status/356455817198837761 Translation: "We need to use slurs!!11!"

https://twitter.com/Rebel_Rock_On/status/356456413758889984 slur: "idiots".

https://twitter.com/ross_crispin/status/356456673944145920 Slur: "moron". and in https://twitter.com/ross_crispin/status/356456779162456064

https://twitter.com/__GriffCo__/status/356456798552719360 Derail: "you weren't polite enough"

https://twitter.com/__GriffCo__/status/356457167374663684 Translation: "The world is ordered according to my feelings, not those of disabled people. Ergo my refusal to acknowledge the issues, denial of them and blatant dismissal of the experiences of disabled people is not dismissal."

https://twitter.com/__GriffCo__/status/356457502063345664 Translation: "By genuine concerns, I mean ones that agree with what I believe and that come from "normal" people like me. People like you don't have genuine concerns of course".

https://twitter.com/Davejf27/status/356459243278319618 Slur: "deluded" and again the insistance that I am bigoted against UKIP.

https://twitter.com/SentientNumber7/status/356463211287035904 Slur: "Idiot" and "stupid".

https://twitter.com/Maurice97ILF/status/356466071445835776 I'm accused of calling someone deluded because I said working with disabled people is not a shield against doing or saying things that harm them. Bonus slur: "Raving".

https://twitter.com/Maurice97ILF/status/356466867919003648 Another "I'm 'normal', you're not, my viewpoint is valid, yours isn't" assertion.

https://twitter.com/UKIPDandH/status/356467052493553664 This proud UKIP member went to my journal digging for dirt it seems. The post says, that disagreement is not a rules violation. But what UKIP did by setting their members on me and abusing me with dehumanisating slurs based on my disabilities is not disagreement, it's bullying, abuse, and a hate crime.

https://twitter.com/BrightonPatriot/status/356467115546517504 Disabilist slur: "loon".

https://twitter.com/ChopwellUK/status/356469390188879876 Slur: "stupid" and "others are bad as well" derail.

https://twitter.com/Davejf27/status/356471983719976960 Slur: "crack pot" and derail: "It's only a few people, we're not all like that".

https://twitter.com/__GriffCo__/status/356472948879654912 Unsaid: "Like you know, being a "normal" aka privileged as hell person, preferably male and white".

https://twitter.com/Maurice97ILF/status/356473553392123905 Apparently I have a mental issue because I tried to explain to UKIP members why this shit is shitty? Yay, slurs.

https://twitter.com/DavidSidney/status/356474897905618945 I think they meant to say "Rot in Hell" or something. I'm once again accused of hating everything.

https://twitter.com/DavidSidney/status/356493276926328834 Slurs: "Padded cell" "Crazy" "bitch"

https://twitter.com/DavidSidney/status/356493973969317888 Yes, politics have nothing to do with politics. Slurs: "Crazy" x 2 and "bitch".

https://twitter.com/Davejf27/status/356494237098979328 Derail: It's only a small amount. (Which explaind why I have yet to have a UKIP member be anything other than disabilist to me?)

https://twitter.com/DavidSidney/status/356494820556025856 I am accused of being fucked in the head.

https://twitter.com/Davejf27/status/356495524272148483 Victim blaming bullshit, clearly it's my fault for existing and daring to answer a UKIP person who asked why disabled people are not interested in the party. Nope, UKIP members don't have a responsibility not to bully, abuse or fling disabilist and sexist slurs at people.

https://twitter.com/Davejf27/status/356495853151731712 Because god forbid "your party has problematic members and attitudes" result in "hey, tell me more about it" *listens* *fixes it* Instead of "waaaaaaah our butts are hurt, how dare you tell us we need to do more to not alienate disabled people?!" which is what I got.

https://twitter.com/Davejf27/status/356498942902546432 According to him I'm the abusive one, because saying UKIP members are frequently disabilist, racist and sexist is abuse, but ganging up on one person and slinging sexist and disabilist slurs at her isn't.

https://twitter.com/Davejf27/status/356499173710893056 He's losing patience with me? Yeah, cos us sub humans are just supposed to take their shit and keep on being nice and educating them and shit in the face of their ignorance.

https://twitter.com/Davejf27/status/356501180093964289 Including this just for the sheer hilarity value, apparently calling people slurs is "reasonable".


This is why you're not trusted UKIP:

1. Because the response of your members to "UKIP has a problem with bigotry against minorities" is not "Well how can we improve?" and actual listening, instead it's "shut up". Instead it's treating us like children, like we can't have a valid opinion, like we're second class citizens. Instead it's calling us "bitch", "crazy", "loon", "stupid", "deluded", "idiot" and other slurs that dehumanise us.

2. Because your policies "for" disabled people are shallow as hell and only designed to go against what the mainstream parties do with no regard for deeper issues.

3. Because your membership operates with an implicit assumption that they're not responsible for attitudes in your party that make reason 1 a reality.

4. Because your membership is largely privileged bigots who you seem to feel no need to reign in when they attack minorities.

5. Because even your disabled spokeswoman is more privileged than anything being white, cis, straight and well off, to the point where she cannot relate to most disabled people and doesn't bother to listen to them.

 6. Because we know your disabled spokeswoman is nothing more than a bandaid on the bigotry in your ranks. If she knew what she was doing and tried to tackle it, she'd be given the bums rush out of the door.

This is why you're not trusted, because you've done fuck all to earn that trust and plenty to show you are not worth trusting with this country any more than the tories or anyone else is.