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HOW TO TELL IF YOU ARE PROBLEMATIC (even if you don't think you are)

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even if you don't think you are

[cross-post from the fb group]


With recent wave of bans for racists, bigots, Trump sympathizers, etc. revealing themselves in the more public FB group, I thought it would be a good idea to discuss these various indicators that someone is problematic. These indicators will be really obvious to most of you, but for some people, these are seriously not obvious. Some of the indicators are understandably confusing to some people, depending on their social environment and imprinting, while other indicators will seem like they should be no-brainers.

NOTE: being problematic means you have a blind spot that was caused by lack of information or false information which has created a skewed and unhealthy perspective that can be healed with open and loving conversation. The most innocent of people can be problematic, so please take this opportunity to ask questions, listen, and learn. But if you find yourself defending or strongly aligning with any of the following, you may just be a bigot and it may get you banned.

These are only a few obvious examples to test if you are problematic/bigoted:

  • you defend Trump
  • you refer to Black Lives Matter protesters as "rioters"
  • you refer to white terrorists as "protesters"
  • you cite Candace Owen as a credible voice for the Black Community
  • you cite Jordan Peterson as a credible voice for how to be a man
  • you cite Joe Rogan as a voice of reason
  • you cite Milo Yiannopoulos as a credible voice for the LGBTQIA+ community


Depending on how invested you are in any of the above indicates just how problematic or bigoted you may be. Depending on how much you defend or promote the above determines if you would be removed from this group.

SAFE Q&A: If you are confused or unclear about any of the above and wish to have a healthy conversation, please feel safe to ask your questions in this thread. Commit to listening and learning, not to defending, and the conversation should be really helpful. Thank you for being open to discussion if any of the above stand out for you.

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you cite Jordan Peterson as a credible voice for how to be a man

Ugh. Thank you for saying this. I'm glad the Jordan Peterson worship has passed its prime in the media, it is one of the reasons why I began to loathe Reddit as a social media platform (I think many of the supporters were bots too, and they spoke in the most insidiously manipulative way when faced with any opposition). I honestly don't trust anyone who exudes such an arrogant authority over ideas that can be looked at from so many angles, and from more credible and thoughtful people.

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The biggest pushback I see on race seems to be about white privilege. It's the tendency to see everyone living within the same world. But long-established and invisible structures are at work.


Some writings that have helped to inform and educate me along the way:

Ta-Nehisi Coates essay on Reparations for the Atlantic magazine illustrated this structural dichotomy.

Peggy Mcintosh   White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Backpack

Barbara Smith's early writing on Intersectionality. The Combahee River Collective Statement

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