Thought of the day

The average schlub does not appreciate rhetoric. Keeping that in mind, let’s go to the comment section over at Pharyngula where the user Pteryxx recently said this:

We’re not dealing with honest participants in a discussion here. We have unconscious bias. We have institutionalized sexism. We have stereotype threat. We have widespread apologetics and denial. We have constant, systemic silencing attempts using every tactic from harassment to shaming to tone-trolling to death threats. And we have evidence that a large subset of sexism-apologetics have as their goal the continued oppression of women.

And they pretend their oppression is actually rational discussion, SO THEY DON’T GET CALLED ON IT. They need the guise of social acceptance for freedom to operate. Rhetoric WILL NOT WORK here – in fact, it’s ceding the point at the outset.

This would be risible were it not so pathetically stupid. This person has used nothing but rhetoric in a post in which he advocates against its use. He obviously has zero understanding of what rhetoric even is or why it matters so much in everyday life.

I think I expect too much out of the average schlub.

One Response

  1. Someone got it:

    For what it’s worth, Michael, I get your point. I don’t know that it’s that hard to understand. What I see you saying is that it’s all in the delivery. I get much farther and usually get my way depending on how I present my thoughts or requests to someone. That’s all I think you’re saying but everyone forgive me since I skimmed a bit. I don’t see it having anything to do with the blog comments or whatnot specifically so I’m not sure why people are getting up in arms. Or this might just be the irony of your point.

    I’m not here for a fight; I’m just commenting that I get his point and I’m not quite sure why people are getting so angry. This became nothing about the subject (again, irony?) and all about what Michael pointed out and what, as I see it at least, is a valid point. If someone called me an asshole or any number of names (and I have been called that plenty on conservative blogs), that’s where my listening would end and that doesn’t seem very effective. That’s not to say people can’t do or say what they’d like; I just see his suggested method as being a bit more likely to engage in dialog rather than shut everything down at square one.


    On that note not only am I done posting in that thread (and others like it), but I will make an effort to avoid these topics. They only invite shell games anyway.

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