How come I am updating an old journal? Because ever since I've written this, some stuff went down in the comments.
This journal was lying in the void of my journal history until a comment flared the discussion back up in full swing. While it started out as a decent discussion, it soon derailed into a sadly repetitive, agressive back-and-forth tennis game of words.
This is what I have learned about social justice:
It's a concept that strives for a society where everyone is equal. Minorities and lesser fortunate individuals are recognized and respected and oppression doesn't exist. Social Justice Allies work to try and diminish rude, offensive things so this feeling of oppression disappears. That's an awesome concept and it's difficult considering we're living in a desensitized society where we laugh at things very easily and possibly not realize the consequences or effects it has on others.
But as with a lot of things, there is a dark side to social justice. There are the bad apples. People who go above and beyond to force social justice upon other people, sometimes for unreasonable things. This often results in bullying, harsh language and even death threats. These people are referred to as Social Justice Sallies or Social Justice Warriors. Thanks to such people (who are abundant on Tumblr just to name an example), the core ideals of social justice are forgotten or distorted and the concept is submerged in a bad reputation.
This ancient journal was when I was still ignorant and I had just learned about the concept of ableism a week earlier. It fascinated me and I wanted to learn more, so as a result I shared it with my watchers here just to hear out what they knew and possibly had to say.
Turns out that's not what you should do. Nope, if you want something to be known, do NOT talk about it. Do NOT share it with your friends and do NOT have an opinion on it.
Sounds pretty counterproductive, right?
What irks me most about Social Justice Warriors is that they often use the argument that people are priviliged (ex. you're born white, born without a handicap or something of the sort). According to them, being priviliged = being oppressive.
That is something I do not agree with. How can you be held accountable for something that you cannot control? I couldn't control my birth as a white-skinned, neurotypical woman. I can't snap my fingers and change the color of my skin or the composition of my brain that resulted in my current mental condition.
But you know what you can change? Your behavior and your actions. Yeah, I am priviliged and I am grateful because I am darn well aware that others don't have it as easy as me. But to call me an oppressor just because I exist? That's ludicrous. Oh, and don't try to deny it. Denial just cements your 'oppressiveness' further down.
I have family members who are handicapped. I have close friends who are handicapped. I have coworkers who are handicapped. My former significant other is handicapped. I myself have a chronic disease that I am going to take to the grave. It's not like I am blind to mental disorders, handicaps and diseases and you bet your butt I recognize that there's a problem that needs to change. There's a reason why I hold charity events and donate money to good causes.
But now I am told to delete this journal because it's offensive? It's offensive because I throw out a concept into this part of the internet that wasn't aware of it at the time? And yet Social Justice Warriors complain that nobody listens to them and that nobody does what they want to. You know why?
Because you're abrassive and bully people as soon as they speak up on the subject. You want people to listen to your cause and yet, when they do, you stomp them into the ground until they go away, delete their blogs or commit suicide. Yes, people have committed suicide due to relentless harassment from these fanatics. It's a very toxic environment.
So no, I am not deleting this. That's giving in to bullying and I've had enough of that when I was a kid.
You know how you can make a change in this society? By being a kind and considerate person. By not calling mentally handicapped people (or heck, people in general) retards. By giving away your seat on the bus to an old lady. By helping someone up who has slipped on a slippery road. By donating to charity. By spending your free time to help and play with handicapped children. By volunteering at a hospital or a home for the elderly. By educating people about issues so the knowledge spreads. And I say educate, which means you don't cuss at people or make them feel like they're less than a human being.
Any of this and more can make a change, little as it may be.
You don't win discussions by constantly harrassing people and forcing insults down people's throats. Just because you say something twice, doesn't mean it somehow magically becomes correct the second time. A discussion only works if there are two sides, you cannot drown out one side by plugging your ears and singing loudly. If you say your piece, I'll listen, think about it and give my thoughts on it. If you start calling me names because you disagree with me, you've lost me as a listener.
That's it. I am done.
</b>End of update</b>
First off, I'd like to thank all the kind people who left comments regarding the death of my dog. I appreciate them all : ) But it was high time I made a new journal. Here's the thing:
Since last week, Yamino
has been addressing a social issue on her Tumblr called "ableism". I never knew such a word (or even such a phenomenon) existed.
What's ableism? From what I understood, it's a form of discrimination that focuses on the mental (dis)abilities of people. To put it simpler: to use words such as crazy, nuts, insane, deranged, retarded or derpy is considered offensive against people with mental disorders and such. People who are anti-ableism strive to bring the hurtfulness of such words to the attention of the general public. For instance, Yamino expressed her disagreement with said words being used in cartoons and such and that it makes her enjoyment more difficult.
Wikipedia on ableism: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ableism
A site posting alternatives for ableist words: whatprivilege.com/replacing-cr…
Now I won't go and be offended by people who use crazy or insane (retarded however, I can understand, but it all depends on the context). I sometimes call myself crazy or derpy and my friends aren't shy with questioning their own (NOT other people's) intelligence by using such terms either. I even heard a rumor that words like "smart" or "intelligent" are technically also ableist, since they imply a difference in mental state between two subjects. But I think that's borderline nitpicking. However, I'm a little more cautious when choosing my words now. I know that the people I socialize with most of the time aren't in the least bit bothered, but it's just for the sake of being considerate as a whole.
So why this journal? I'm curious to know how many other people here know about ableism and what their opinion is about it. So just a simple penny for your thoughts :3 Don't start major arguments with angry words and flaming, please. Everyone has their own opinion.