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SOteric's Journal
Posted by SOteric in The DU Lounge
Wed Jul 27th 2005, 03:50 PM
(Reprinted as thread topic by special request)

In the middle of the last century, progressive people stood up for the oppressed and were an important factor in elevating the cause of civil rights in this country.

When we hear someone use the 'N' word, or behave in abusive ways to a person of African descent only because of the colour of their skin, we're not merely offended, correct thinking individuals find that situation intolerable.

In gender discrimination the line gets clouded by sexuality, but it's really not different. I'm no prude. I have laughed at a number of randy jokes and know the meaning of terms which make polite people blush. I have an apron with a bunch of penguins boinking in orgy in a subtle pattern. This would be free expression of sexualised topics. We can laugh at the jokes in Playboy, we can indulge in erotica, we can accept people for their open marriages or variant sexual predilections. Where it becomes intolerable is the point that it demeans any individual simply because of their gender, or predilection, or orientation, or ad infinitum.

Certainly there are people in every segment of society who use any excuse to find offense. I really don't see that as being the majority of what goes on here at these message boards. It's a careful line we have to walk balancing our tolerance and the need to stand up and speak to that which is wrong.

I admire a great many men and women on these boards who speak out against that which they feel is intolerable. I think if you'll read with an open mind, you'll find most of them make a very reasonable case for their beliefs and are not merely speaking from emotion or a need to be dramatic.

It's not offensive to use joking, abusive terms about the gay and lesbian community; it's intolerable. It's not offensive to poke fun of women in demeaning and objectifying ways; it's intolerable. It's not offensive to mock people of colour or ethnic variation; it's intolerable. Yes, we're a tolerant bunch but we will not be the oppressors. We stand against the evil we do not accept it.

We're just fucking better than that.
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