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Everything posted by butterbumps!

  1. butterbumps!

    u.s. politics: sundowning on the american empire

    I realize this is getting into conspiracy territory, but a not insignificant part of me kind of thinks the broken arm is bullshit. The more I think about this, the more I’m wondering if it’s a convenient way to avoid addressing his status as a Russian asset as well as avoiding giving a response to white supremacist domestic terrorism for the next 6 weeks.
  2. What does a progressive prosecutor look like? Is the issue that makes Harris so “problematic” the fact that she’s a prosecutor in the first place? I mean the Vox explainer that was linked to I guess prove her inadequacy basically shows her record to be a mixed bag, not that she did anything particularly egregious. While I wish I lived in Warren’s America (as in, I want a pretty far left agenda), I’m kind of in love with the fact that Harris is a sharp prosecutor- for this particular election, against this administration teeming with criminal simpletons. I don’t know if she can or will actually go after prosecuting these felonious fuckwads, but the fact that it seems like she could tear it out root and stem is massively appealing to me. Also, watching her go against shitty men is enormously cathartic.
  3. butterbumps!

    US Politics: A Farewell to Arms

    I don’t know if that’s necessarily true. Even just given what we know out in the open (things like Kushner wanting a private direct line to Russia, the Trump Tower deal, Fredo Jr.’s clear acceptance of a meeting for dirt on Hillary, how Trump keeps meeting with Putin without anyone but translators present, telling a foreign power to hack an opponent’s private account during a debate, etc), it’s pretty clear there’s a lot there that we should find unacceptable and probably subject to some kind of legal consequence. The problem isn’t that these assholes are “innocent” or that there’s nothing to see here. I think it’s that our laws are woefully insufficient to deal with the kind of abject venality of this family of syphillitic ulcers- this presidency seems to be exposing all the weaknesses in our laws. And not just with this Russia business, but also with all these ridiculous things that aren’t technically illegal but remarkably corrupt like self-dealing, nepotism, not presenting tax returns, cheating on taxes, and so forth. Maybe Dems should pursue that report relentlessly and start turning some of this “norm” business into law.
  4. butterbumps!

    US Politics: Shutbound & Down

    I’m strongly pro Harris, but I’ve been curious about the Beto as VP angle since his loss, and increasingly like it. At least, I think I might really like it in the context of woman president/ man VP combo particularly. In addition to what’s been said, it seems like he’s good at getting young people to vote and pay attention. But I think what I might like most about him is his ability to explain things well, make issues personal without seeming like it’s torturously staged and pandering, and to reach a lot of people. There’s been a pretty strong disinformation campaign by the right for years that’s served to obfuscate basic reality about how government works, what government programs people are benefitting from, and so on. Judging by the scores of think pieces about government-supported voters continuously voting against government-support by voting Republican and such (and all those furious people who are anti Obamacare but want their ACA), it looks we’re overdue for a lesson in “what does government actually do for us.” I get the sense that not knowing about how government affects people personally makes a lot of especially young people feel like their vote is pointless so why bother. I’m thinking he might be a useful messenger to this end. And granted, he doesn’t have to be a VP to be an influential Dem messenger and leader, but being on the ticket would obviously raise the profile and keep him relevant.
  5. butterbumps!

    U.S. Politics: Oh Donnie Boy, the Feds are calling...

    What’s the deal with this nude selfie Mueller obtained that’s “classified for reasons of national security”? That makes it sound like kompromat I guess. I can totally see Junior getting catfished and sending nudes to this Russian agency. Would that need to be classified for national security reasons though? Does the classified designation strongly suggest it’s someone actually in office, like trump (or pence?)
  6. butterbumps!

    What Do You Think Cultural Appropriation Is?

    I think this would be a case of classism rather than cultural appropriation on the part of the hockey team. It sounds like Chav style is so connected to the working class that mocking it is tantamount to mocking (and stereotyping) that class. Whereas, I don’t think the other examples you gave, like goth or emo, have that same strong association to any particular class that would render a party featuring those styles classism. I think the same would apply in the US, with things like “redneck” or “hillbilly” parties— I don’t think those are cool to do either, as it’s classist, and kind of inherently mean-spirited punching down when done by people from the middle class and beyond, even when not intended to be by any individual party-goer.
  7. butterbumps!

    What Do You Think Cultural Appropriation Is?

    7. Spent a ton of digital ink about how he’s a POC, so as to thwart accusations of privilege, then forget this was the claim when it was convenient to use himself as an example of a non-POC to say that non-POC would face the same discrimmination as POC about hairstyles in the workplace.
  8. butterbumps!

    US Politics: A Feast for Crows

    Hey, did you secretly write/ fund/ sponsor the Trumponomics review in NYMAG? JOking aside, I immediately thought of you when I came across this.
  9. butterbumps!

    What Do You Think Cultural Appropriation Is?

    Won’t someone PLEEEASE think of the racists!
  10. butterbumps!

    What Do You Think Cultural Appropriation Is?

    There's definitely been cases of actually property taken, but the house example was from an account I'd read a while back describing how what many of us think of as "cultural exchange" feels different to marginalized communities. Though I think you're mistaken on this second part. The originating culture has been deprived of things, though not necessarily through (or only through) another culture's adopting/ taking of cultural elements (the deterioration of meaning in an object or practice would be an example of CA depriving the originating culture). The framework that makes discussion of CA salient in the first place is historic and continued marginalization and abuse of certain cultures. But again, I point out that there's nothing to actually prevent anyone from taking from a culture. I don't think anyone serious is actually calling for legal or state intervention to keep cultures contained. People from outside a culture are free to take, but people are also free to express discomfort and pain about it. But the second part kind of hits on a major problem. Some of these cultures being "borrowed" from haven't actually been accepted as part of the entire society. That's what I was trying to get at earlier when I brought up the US' particular anti-black bias and treatment of Native populations. Certain cultures have been kept at arm's length within their own wider societies, societies which have also sometimes sought to erase elements meaningful and unique to those same cultures. I'm not sure that it can be a true "cultural exchange" without extending acceptance and welcome to everyone, and until then, treating it as though everything should be freely "exchanged" seems a bit shitty for those not yet accepted and treated like equal members of society.
  11. butterbumps!

    What Do You Think Cultural Appropriation Is?

    I don't understand-- what is actually preventing you from taking from other cultures (or actually fencing culture in more generally)? It isn't like this stuff is copyrighted, or that you'd be given an injunction or arrested, or that you're legally (or even physically I assume) prevented from doing so in some way. The issue seems simply that you don't want people telling you that maybe you should consider what taking those elements are like for people from different backgrounds than you who might feel pain and be otherwise upset at seeing culturally meaningful elements treated like accessories by you. You don't want backlash from people on Twitter or the internet or whatever because it makes you feel shitty to be told you're doing something people think is wrong, ignorant, insensitive or dickish. So your discomfort outweighs the discomfort of the communities who have expressed concern over cultural takings, and you're just advocating what you seem to believe is your right to act with impunity. That seems pretty unreasonable. Appropriate culture all you like, but I don't see why people who are hurt or uncomfortable by it shouldn't express that discomfort. Though, if you think people should made aware of cultural meanings (what I bolded), then what are you even fighting this for?
  12. butterbumps!

    What Do You Think Cultural Appropriation Is?

    How so? In what way does my not providing examples of what I consider CA impede your ability to fully articulate what you consider CA? You’re the one with the super hot takes on CA being mostly bullshit, not me. And you’ve been giving half-answers to what you believe CA is and isn’t, and there’s been no consistent logic to it. A productive discussion would involve your responding to— at minimum— this part of my previous post, because it’s concerned with teasing out your method of determining what constitutes CA.
  13. butterbumps!

    What Do You Think Cultural Appropriation Is?

    Does the idea that non-Aboriginal people are profiting from something they are copying from Aboriginal people factor into what you find offensive about it? Do you find the idea of not appreciating the meaning of a culture's art an act of offensive trivialization applicable to all cultures? Do you feel this way only about plastic art, or do you consider it problematic when it's also the copying of dance or tribal dress or tattoos, or hairstyles of the Aboriginal peoples? But what if the non Aboriginal artisans making Aboriginal art divorced from meaning are also doing it with super good intentions??? They just like the style! Kind of like how someone might like the style of hair, dance or dress that holds a ton of meaning to another culture. Calling attention to cases of CA isn't really about ringing off culture or performing a static containment of culture. It's part of the much larger context of acknowledging, or even just in understanding, privilege. I'm not sure that people who denounce cultural appropriation are doing so with the idea that a white person should never, ever be able to wear box braids or sell something heavily influenced by another culture, without criticism or feedback or paying back some kind of dues to the culture. But in a current society of rampant structural racism and continued marginalization of people, I think the idea is that cases of CA probably should be called out because it is a part of that larger story of structural marginalization. In other words, I think the liberal goal would be to get to a point in society where anyone can wear and do anything, within reason (religious objects might remain in a kind of off-limits status in this scenario). However, a consensual cultural exchange hasn't yet occurred to make that feel equitable or fair. It's an incredible privilege to be able to slip in and out of cultural elements at a whim or as a "style," or to be able to profit or market these things. Drawing someone's attention to this tangible expression of privilege doesn't seem like a terrible idea. I think there's value in making clear where something comes from and what the history behind it is. You can head off the potential mob by doing this yourself preemptively, or apologizing and acknowledging the lapse if called out on it. When people admit their cluelessness and apologize genuinely, it tends to stem the angry mob you seem so concerned with. The over-the-top reactions look petty when someone immediately acknowledges their mistake and owns it. There's no shame in being caught, correcting yourself, learning from the experience, and not doing it the same way again. Yea, first of all, there's always "some more serious" or "the real issue" we could be discussing to address these problems. I also never claimed that CA had to be a launching point or was the only one. I mentioned that CA strikes me as a fairly good launching point because it's a tangible, accessible segue into a larger, potentially more abstract discussion about marginalization and privilege. Also, exactly how well do you think these "moderates" take discussions about police violence, education statistics and what have you? What makes you think they'd take those discussions any better?
  14. butterbumps!

    What Do You Think Cultural Appropriation Is?

    What do you mean by "use of Aboriginal art?" Like you say that the problem arises from ignorance of the cultural meaning. What exactly are you describing? Are you talking about non-Aboriginal people selling inauthentic Aboriginal style art? Can you explain this more? And I guess why are you very quick to dismiss and push back against the bolded? If a style of dance or a certain type of braid is imbued with special meaning and identity to a certain culture, why are you dismissing it as unnecessary outrage? Please note that I'm not arguing that we should be outraged about these things; you're kind of all over the place and I'm trying to discern the logic behind your views. If people don't realize that a certain style of something comes from a certain culture, why wouldn't that fall under your view that they are appropriating that culture through ignorance and should be addressed for it? Is this for real? I'm not sure what I think about whether a culture should be "owned." Obviously it wouldn't be in some legal sense, like copyrighting or the trademarking you bring up. I read something a while back that puts the issue into more personal terms. It was something to the effect of how the much-celebrated idea of cultural exchange being like having a bunch of people show up to your house, telling you that you can share what they've brought, but then taking with them with your family's heirlooms without asking, or even doing so anyway despite your protests. This feels pretty monstrous on a personal level; is it ok on a larger societal scale? Even when it comes to something like legal ownership, it's not like you can't use copyrighted property; you have to get permission and appropriately compensate the owner. I think that the view of those exhibiting outrage over instances of CA are mainly doing so when the person doing the appropriating seems, ignorant, disrespectful, clueless, and like a cultural tourist. I don't think most reasonable people say that X person cannot do/ enjoy/ make money off of/ or wear parts of another culture. The key issue is that respect is paid. Whether that takes the form of acknowledgement, activism, some kind of sponsorship, whatever the case may be. There's endless ways to do this. I have no idea-- I don't know the racial interplay in the UK and its colonialist legacy intimately enough to presume to lecture you about it. Yea, you keep telling me that discussions of CA push moderates away. Again, I ask: what do you seriously suggest should be brought up in terms of race and power imbalance that won't push fragile moderates away? Everything race related upsets those with a vested interest in upholding those power structures. Anything you say will be met with defensiveness and denial. What "harder topics" about racism do you suggest be discussed instead? CA is inextricably linked to issues like race and power structures, but CA is kind of a tangible manifestation of those things in mundane life. So it actually seems like a fairly reasonable and accessible launching point for larger discussions of race and persistent oppressions and the like. I mentioned this before, but most manifestations of racism are by good intentioned people who think of themselves as good people, who don't secretly want to lynch black people or directly harm any particular set of people. It's the quiet, insidious biases and blase dehumanizations and objectifications that constitute most racism. What are you endeavoring to prove here? If the issue is that a POC would have a harder time getting hired with certain styles of hair and dress than a white person, then what is bringing up the fact that you would also struggle to get hired with dreads doing for your argument to prove that white people would also struggle? Or did you forget you spent every other post this thread bringing up how you're a POC?
  15. butterbumps!

    What Do You Think Cultural Appropriation Is?

    Can we start with this? Why don't you give a few examples of the bolded, from your point of view. Please offer examples of CA that you feel comfortable calling CA. This is a really terrible look. You ask not to be summarily handwaved, yet you keep handwaving away all of the descriptions and explanations of American racism we keep offering. I'm not trying to tell you what your experience with racism is personally, or what race relations are like in London, or even outside of the US context. It would benefit you to slow down and consider what people are talking about in terms of the US context and history of racism, and not be so quick to conflate it with the phenomenon of globalism. oh wow, you mean like what those who call out CA are doing? Like you realize that's what calling out CA is supposed to be about, right? Like pointing out "hey, this person is using something from X culture to turn a profit for themselves, but X culture has structural barriers that impedes their being able to make a profit on it themselves, so maybe that person turning a profit for themselves should help the community they're borrowing from." The mere act of identifying CA helps bring identification to, and awareness of those structural barriers. what a great idea! how do you think that happens? By not having conversations about race, power structures and discrimination? So you advocate the avoidance technique-- that by avoiding the problem it will get better? What problems typically improve by pretending they don't exist? Your argument on this-- that talking about race/ racism creates and perpetuates more racism is like saying that your broken leg won't heal because you keep complaining about it healing. Better not identify and address that cancer directly, otherwise it won't get better!
  16. butterbumps!

    What Do You Think Cultural Appropriation Is?

    If you believe the bolded, then why do you seem to downplaying CA in favor of choosing to focus all your energy on what you consider overreactions? It comes across like you believe "overreactions" are A. the exclusive response to CA, and B. more harmful than CA itself. I'm not talking about some globalist, capitalist hegemony. In the US, we have a particularly ugly history when it comes to our treatment of Native peoples and Black people. As a country, we are super racist, but we are especially anti-Black. For us, the concept of whiteness was constructed as something to set up as superior to blackness, because in order to be comfortable enslaving people, it's easier to convince yourself that they are inferior to you, aren't fully human to begin with, and that they deserve it. Blackness has been dehumanized, set against "superior" whiteness as a point of contrast, and kept out of white culture throughout our history. Other ethnicities and races that had been disliked and hated have been able to be accepted into white culture here by virtue of their also being able to define themselves as not black. That's what someone from the US typically means when we say "dominant white culture." It's the culture of "whiteness," expanded over time to include pretty much most people who simply are not black. We also have an incredibly shitty history with the Native population. Additionally to the genocides and forced relocations, we've also engaged in things like forced separation of Native children from their parents for "education," by which that means "assimilating" them into western culture by keeping them from practicing or knowing about their own culture. At the same time, though, we've fetishized that same culture, taking particularly sacred symbols and turning them into cheap commodities stripped of their meaning, and turning to the most tired stereotypes when representing them and teaching kids about their culture. We've literally kept Native people from having their culture (in outrageously inhumane ways, I may add), but commodified their most sacred symbols into accessories for non-Native people to wear to Coachella, as well as basically every elementary-aged kid learning about "the First Thanksgiving" (which is totally made up) in school with their paper headbands. I think your context is different, and would feature more colonialism instead. No one's getting put in boxes when calling out CA. That's just it. In the US, we are already in boxes that frequently limit opportunity, success and even the ability to live simply because of who we are and what we look like! That is what racism looks like! This is what systematic discrimination is! The boxes are already there! I think it depends on the situation, and there's no one formula. But the operative issue is that they endeavor to make it so that people of that culture can break into the field if structural barriers to doing so exist. They don't have to solve every problem a community might face, but putting forth a real effort to make it so that anyone might have access to make that food for profit strikes me as the right thing to do. Even simply calling attention to those barriers is a good place to start. Coming at it with the attitude of "hey, I was able to open a restaurant and do all this because I have privileges not afforded to X. We need to change this by doing the following..." is probably a good start I think. What do you think "focusing on the real problems" looks like, out of curiosity? Like the disproportionate killing of black people by police- that's a pretty non-trivial issue, right? So like bringing attention to that issue through peaceful protest during the national anthem at athletic games? Because that's been accused of "pushing moderates away" too. Anything that points out whiteness to white people "pushes away the moderates," it would seem. You seem to think that CA is somehow separate from "the real issues" of racism. I think some of what you and others might be reacting against might not be true appropriation. But I think in its true form, CA falls into the category of the everyday, pernicious, insidious type of racism, which is really the more prevalent, as most people don't actually hold animus toward other races and cultures, but rather implicit biases.
  17. butterbumps!

    What Do You Think Cultural Appropriation Is?

    Your posts contain a lot of conflated issues that might be useful to start delaminating a bit. Is your main problem with cultural appropriation that you don’t believe such a thing exists? Is the issue that you do not believe that CA causes harm? You keep bringing up things like “beating people over the head” about CA. Is your issue that it does actually exist, but that some reactions to it are far too extreme than you’re comfortable with? Are you uncomfortable with those reactions because you see CA as nothing more than harmless cultural exchange, and that any critical backlash is unjust? Are you calling for caution when pointing out even genuine cases of CA because you believe you’ve witnessed disproportionate outrage, and find such disproportionate reactions wrong as a moral issue? Is your objection rooted in practicality, such that swarming a cultural appropriator with outrage doesn’t change their Minds? Do you feel the need to speak out against these oppressive outrage engines because you think disproportionate flogging is how the issue is handled the overwhelming majority of the time? If I had to hazard a guess, I suspect a lot of skepticism about CA generally has to do with being told that it causes harm to groups of people, but most explanations— even published ones— stop short of actually explaining how and why this is the case. I’m not an expert, but I figured I’d give it a shot. I think a lot of the problem has to do with the fact that the things dominant cultures are “borrowing” are things that were— and still are— used by that dominant culture to oppress the culture they’re borrowing from. For example, black people are discriminated against for wearing traditional hairstyles. They are less likely to be hired or otherwise treated with respect and as equals when wearing natural hair or dreads or braids, and adopting the dominant white aesthetic was a tool of survival for a very long time (and still often is). A white person who wears traditionally black styles does not encounter the same discrimination or harms that black people do, and are often seen as rebellious or cool or edgy for doing so. In addition to how galling it must feel for a black person, to whom hair is imbued with identity and deep meaning, to watch it stripped of meaning and adopted as a superficial trend by white people, it’s also something that continues to actively keep them from the basic privileges afforded to white people when worn themselves. A similar issue emerges in terms of the dominant culture “discovering” some aspect of another culture and blithely profiteering off it. That’s not to say a white chef shouldn’t be able to specialize in Mexican cuisine or anything. The disconnect happens when the dominant culture takes and profits but never gives back in some way. A white person will likely find it much easier to “market” some aspect of another culture due to number of factors, from structural advantages in terms of access and financing to issues like having greater social palatability by virtue of their whiteness. Someone who profits off another culture, but then also uses that success and power to help others of that culture achieve success isn’t appropriating.
  18. butterbumps!

    US Politics: Paradise Lost

    Without a doubt, absolutely not. The sort of Trump supporter who chants that does not actually care about the emails. They never cared about the emails. They especially don’t care about emails when someone on their team is doing the email malfeasance. In fact, they don’t care about any sort of malfeasance from their team at all. The email chants were only ever about having something not explicitly sexist and racist to invoke in their asinine 5- minute-hates- mouthbreather support groups.
  19. butterbumps!

    Kristallnacht -80 Years Later, How Have We Changed?

    What are examples of things people are trying to preserve that multiculturalism threatens to destroy, as you see it?
  20. butterbumps!

    US Politics: Dead Pimps Need Not Apply

    You mean financial crimes beyond things like the money laundering for oligarchs that could be folded into the foreign interference, like their generalized fraudulent business practices, right? I’ve been assuming that there’s a world of hurt to that end coming from NY state (with the bonus that state crimes can’t be federally pardoned).
  21. butterbumps!

    US Politics: In Through the Out Door

    This is consistent with my experience, too. Though, I wonder what they think and say to each other when outsiders (anti-Trumpers) aren’t around. Putting aside those truly brainwashed, I wonder how many know “facts” like these are a farce in service to a larger argument in favor of bigotry? I’m curious if they’ll just start abandoning these fig leaves of talking points at some point. Here’s my question. Do any of these people ever feel ashamed, angry or embarrassed by how badly they are being pandered to, used and conned by the party? And not merely by Trump, but the entire Republican machine that convinces the credulous to support plutocratic policy that serves only the incredibly rich by stoking culture wars. I’m sure those (few) voting repub who weren’t energized by the bigotry are “temporarily embarrassed millionaires” or subscribing to the prosperity gospel and whatever, and some who think they want to see Roe v Wade overturned (I say think, because I don’t actually believe Republicans will want the whirlwind that ensues should it occur). But don’t these people ever get tired of being played?
  22. butterbumps!

    US Politics: In Through the Out Door

    Slate had a piece on the enormity that is Democrat messaging the other day. I have to say, this also confuses me. I get the sense that a lot of the country’s creatives are on the Dem side; how is it that their talents aren’t being applied? Why are the Dems always going so milquetoast at the national level? In terms of specific messaging, I’m curious if something forward-looking would serve them, like appealing to the future as opposed to this regressive, backward-looking nostalgia shit Trump peddles.
  23. butterbumps!

    US Politics: In Through the Out Door

    While I wasn’t expecting a blue wave, and understood the Senate was just structurally difficult to take and defend this term, and knew that voter suppression and gerrymandering put the odds against us in a number of place, and am aware that R voters just tend to be better than Dems at voting in midterms, I have to say that I’m pretty aghast at how many people actually came out to double down on the stupid and the bigoted. Like how is the US this full of the boundlessly hateful and credulous? And are they actually even this gullible, or do they pretend to believe Dems are giving free healthcare and scholarships or whatever to MS13 members that are apparently coming over in droves to rape white women?
  24. butterbumps!

    What Do You Think Cultural Appropriation Is?

    I know this is crazy, but stay with me here. It’s almost like that poster wanted us to read it like he was saying the bolded, but then quickly retreat behind some technical reading of his post to claim faux outrage over a bunch of excitable liberals interpreting the post as intended. I mean, I know it can’t possibly be that, because he says he wants an “honest” conversation about the role of “hard work” in a group’s acceptance within a culture. Which, I guess I should add, is being folded into the idea of assimilation now too.
  25. butterbumps!

    What Do You Think Cultural Appropriation Is?

    Did you see the previous two posts of mine where I point out how these groups have spent 100+ years advocating for themselves with (multiple!) interest groups to specifically combat discrimmination? Because the 100+ years of directly addressing the discrimmination as “others” against themselves (not to mention political machines like Tamany Hall and the like to wield influence) has a lot to do with this. (And a very ugly racial pecking order inspired many of these immigrant groups to emphasize their own “whiteness” to play up the the differences between themselves and other ethnicities, so there’s that layer of self-advocacy in this too.) But no, it’s a case of just putting nose to grindstone and the good people in power holding you down will just be so impressed by your work ethic they’ll start treating you as equals out of a mutual respect for diligence.