When is it enough?

Spent early yesterday arguing with people who believe simply providing a service somehow indicates acceptance of a “lifestyle” you don’t approve of. Listen… until Vegans stop serving meat eaters and little old Jewish guys quit serving Goyim, you need to buck up and shut up.

But I’ve said what I had to say about the subject. If your religion says you should treat your fellow citizens differently based on something they do that has nothing to do with you, FUCK your religion. And fuck you.

I’m done yelling at you people. If I could put you all on a old and battered aircraft carrier and set you adrift, I would. Useless fucks.

Fact is, I have nothing else to say to you people. Except go away. If you’re going to be “raptured” I wish your dickhead god would just get it done. You people are quite demonic enough… I’m sure I can deal with the aftermath once you’re gone. Religious radicals are all the same. The only difference is in the expression of that radicalism, and that’s a sliding scale that actually slides.

Which leads us to gun nuts. Not everyone needs a gun. If you’d argue that your in-law to whom you wouldn’t even loan a vehicle should be able to walk into a shop and buy a gun no questions asked, you’re an asshole.

Yesterday I had the joy of battling THIS ignorance and then get hit in the back of the head with some MRA bullshit from an unexpected source. If that’s what I have to expect from even our allies, fuck it. I’m done. Most of our country is politically constipated, unable to give a shit about politics, even though it’s fucking up their life at this very moment.

I’ve said it before. The enemy is a hydra. I spend a lot of time attacking DIFFERENT heads, not just the ones that threaten me. I’m a bit tired of seeing people who don’t get that, who are too busy chasing their own particular head to notice their neighbor is getting chunks torn out of them.

This goes for the “liberal democrat” who thinks that gay rights is a distraction. Fuck you, jerkoff. That goes for the white “liberal” who thinks people of color need to “calm down.” Fuck you, buddy. That goes for men who think women are “too strident” when it comes to fighting for their rights. Piss off.

What it boils down to is that I’ve fucking had it. I’m done fighting about it all. Fuck everyone who’s so worried about THEIR hydra they don’t notice the head their allies are fighting.

If I was like that I’d be fighting for the rights of the disabled and fuck the rest of you. Women are getting hosed? Tough shit. I’m worried about disabled folks. Gay people are getting hammered? Ah, well. Maybe they should pretend to be straight.

I can’t PRETEND not to be disabled.

The President says that marijuana legalization shouldn’t be a priority. Well, tell that to the thousands of children currently being persecuted for it. Tell that to the parents who have to worry about their children being snatched away and given to child killers. Tell that to the workers who can lose their job over bullshit.

Must be nice to have skated by YOUR teenage drug use, Mr. President. Other folks–particularly of color–weren’t so fucking lucky.

I like arguing too much. I like knowing I’m right and the other person is wrong. But you know what? It’s not helping anything. I’m not convincing anyone, and I sure as FUCK have better things to do than yell at stupid people. Oh, they might not be as viscerally satisfying, but they still need to be done. I could spend all that writing energy working on my next book. My problem is that as much as I love my books, I figured that some of my energy should be spent fighting for other people. But I’m feeling downright unappreciated in this capacity. I’ve got hundreds of people who read and share my shit.

Appreciated, but I’d appreciate it more if they shared my shit and read my books. Or bought them and deleted them, for all I give a shit. I’m doing all this for free, and all I’ve ever really asked is a bit of support. But I’m not feeling it.

I grow weary of the fight, especially when I feel as though I’m fighting some battles alone because my allies are too busy focusing on THEIR priorities.

After thousands of years of oppression and being treated like children, women have a right to be a little piqued. And they have a right to fight for parity as they see it. Those who sabotage that, or give a platform for those who would, will get short shrift from me. Same with those who fight against equal rights for LGBT folk. I could yell at them. Quite effectively. I can smack them repeatedly with a truth stick. It doesn’t help.

We’ve got popular media figures saying that one group exercising their free speech is somehow silencing individuals, or other groups. Proving that Bill Maher and Larry Wilkerson don’t understand free speech in the FIRST fucking place.

This is what I mean about feeling as though allies are taking potshots at my back, and the backs of all of us who are fighting for a more equitable world. We successfully chastise someone for being a public dick and shitheads like Maher come along and try to say we’re wrong for exercising OUR free speech because it made them uncomfortable.

Fuck Maher. If you say something you KNOW is likely to offend a large group of people, don’t be surprised if they show up at your metaphoric door saying things that hurt your fucking feelings.

As long as you have the ability to respond, even if you’re outnumbered, you have not been denied your free speech. That dickface who was kicked out of that college class because after repeated warnings doesn’t get to whine that he was silenced. He still gets to speak. He can blog to his heart’s content. But the teacher and other students in that class didn’t have to be his captive audience. He wants to teach a class, he’s welcome to apply. Otherwise once it’s been revealed that no one is particularly interested in hearing your P.O.V. ad nauseum, find something CONSTRUCTIVE to do.

The study I read the other day really tweaked my nose. Here’s the real skinny. The majority of Americans aren’t tuned in enough to pay attention to what’s really going on. Only the politically engaged actually know ANYTHING about the politics and policies that matter… and then only those who are willing to accept information from multiple sources and are willing to tolerate occasionally ambiguity. The rest of us primarily make our political decisions based on OUR PREJUDICES. Our reaction to, say, undocumented immigration, might be our personal feelings about Jesus, the neighbor’s gardener and have NOTHING to do with the big picture elements that move the engaged progressive or liberal. On the right wing they just tend to accept their in-group’s prejudices, which is even worse than a personal prejudice that’s actually BASED on something, even if it’s something stupid.

What this means is that we’re never going to be able to recruit enough of the uninitiated to really make a difference. It’s going to take making the MOST of our alliances. Our single issues have to expand. Women have to decide that gay rights are as important as abortion rights (and, for the most part, they seem to be heading that direction). Gays have to decide that abortion rights are as important as their right to marry. Immigrants have to decide that women’s and gay rights are as important as their immigration concerns. And vice versa. Labor activists have to grasp that women’s rights are also important, and that gay marriage will help people see the real inequalities that exist BEYOND those of common prejudice.

Show me a feminist with a knife buried in a gay activist’s back, or a gay activist with a knife buried in a African American leader’s back, and I’ll show you an unknowing saboteur who’s doing more for the other side than they’re managing themselves.

This means that things like prison reform, reform of our drug laws, and various things should matter not only to those with a personal stake, but to ALL of us. Because, you know what? If you’re seen FIGHTING their personal hydra head, they might turn to take a few swings at yours.

Frankly I’m burned out and frustrated. And, in the end, pretty damned disgusted. I don’t think I want to do this anymore. I can’t be the one who’s watching everyone else’s backs for knives from within. I don’t want to be. I don’t want to be the one engaged with gun rights freaks AND religious freaks only to find that allies are heaving crap at feminists and other progressives.

Not dealing with this. Either stand together or fall separately. I’m not going to kill myself fighting these battles if the minute I’m not paying attention the various groups are going to start warring amongst themselves, or taking potshots.

I even get a whiff of someone who wants to pretend that women are “in control,” or ever have been, and I’m gone. I’m not inclined to host someone else’s delusions. In some cases some men get screwed in custody hearings. And the system will grind a poor man underfoot if given half a chance. But that’s true regardless of the circumstances. Once the system notices you, you’re just a target. If you can’t afford to pay it off, it will do its damnedest to destroy you. Don’t feel like you’re anything special because the state’s interest is simply because you’re a man in this particular case. It has its own way of targeting members of other demographic groups. You only feel singled out because you’re burning with self-righteous anger. Yes, those women and the system screwed you. Uh-huh. You had NOTHING to do with it.

Meh. Not impressed. If your argument is that your problems arise from “those damn feminists” or “those damn gays” or “those damn immigrants” I have a feeling you should be pointing at the person in the mirror.

And more than anything yesterday made me glad that I’m not a member of any in-group. I’m neither fish nor fowl. My loyalty belongs to the cause of equality and human decency, not any particular movement espousing one path to achieving it for one particular group of citizens.

And while there’s a great call for an African American women to succeed Holder as A.G. I’ve got a serious sticking point NO ONE seems to want to consider. Holder has made it clear he’s willing to look at mitigating the harm done by the war on cannabis. She’s made it clear she’s not on board with that.

So my question is whether she, with this attitude, will do ANYTHING to alleviate the suffering of the tens, if not hundreds, of thousands of American men of color who have been unjustly persecuted by our “justice” system because of the ludicrous excuse offered by possession of a plant that’s arguably the safest therapeutic substance known to man.

This is what I mean about fighting other people’s hydras. I know people who’ve been fighting for legalization SINCE THE SIXTIES. Decent people who always vote liberal, who are finally seeing some progress here. Unless she brings something specific to the table to serve ANOTHER agenda, her nomination will be a kick in the face to all of those people for no good purpose.

To those who don’t think it’s important… well, the families of all those people unfairly incarcerated probably care an awful lot.

We’re talking “big picture” here. With normalization of marijuana laws, a lot of the interactions happening between people of color and the police simply won’t happen. The cops won’t be out there believing they can get an easy bust simply because they target someone who might have cannabis.

We’ve had a female AG. We’ve had an African-American AG. Unless her abilities exceed everyone else’s by a great degree, I don’t think the trade is worth it. Any gain for either women or African Americans is barely symbolic, and it’s going to cause a real loss for another arm of the progressive movement.

But, you know… whatever. I’m announcing my disinterest in arguing about any of this. I’m tired of trying to convince people of what seems obvious to me. EVERY angle must be considered. Not just the ones that one group or another want to bring to light.

Part of the reason we keep getting into big messes is because we are continually discounting one group’s concerns in the interest of promoting someone else’s perspective. While embracing social liberalism, the Democrats turned their backs on labor… and vice versa. We refuse to accept that only by achieving equality on a social/cultural level will people finally grasp that they’re being screwed over by corporate America and the racial/gender divides have been a convenient lever.

I’m checking out for a while. I have nothing more to add right now. I don’t want to argue about it. I just want to go lick my wounds and try to get a more positive perspective on things. I have maintained faith in the human race to solve our problems… but now that faith is as shaken as it’s ever been.

Rather than standing side by side against the hydra, we’re going to throw each other in front of the gnashing teeth in an attempt to get in a shot while it’s busy chewing on our comrades.

I want no part of that.

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