Politically correct is a term that has many problems attached to it. Many people attack Muslims. I spoke with someone who was attacking them, I asked him which Muslim he meant – those living in Australia, in Iraq or Iran, or wherever? He called me politically correct. I asked him which one of his neighbours was he referring to? He hesitated. Then a week later we had the same conversation because he had been listening to mainstream media again – he is retired and watches crap without deeply accepting it’s crap. When the West is waging war on Muslims MSM has to paint them as evil to justify our heinous acts. Turning the term “politically correct” into a derogatory term is just collateral damage. Unfortunately it is not helped by the PC police who demand the use of appropriate language, and are satisfied with the language being enough – and not being concerned with the awareness that the language is supposed to reflect.
When it comes to speaking of issues concerning gender, race, religion there is only way one correct way to speak and that is “genuinely correct”, what used to be politically correct, for the simple reason that we can never be detached when we are speaking of these issues. How can a black man speak truthfully of how a white man feels and vice versa, how can Muslims speak truthfully about Christians, and how can women speak about men? Why have I put it this way round? White men says blacks do this – this is racism. Christians decry Muslims, and men put down women. This is the norm not everyone does it but it is the norm, and thinking people need to work to promote awareness amongst this ignorance. These forms of prejudice need to be our priority to correct because whites, Christians and men are the power within those debates, and their power produces racism that disempowers, war that kills Muslims, and sexism that disempowers women. But it does not make it acceptable for black people to describe whites as honkies (or whatever the current phrase is), but their prejudice matters less because they don’t have the power to disempower.
However because I am a white man I must be PC – genuinely correct because I am male and white. At the same time I cannot be detached. With regards to religion I consider myself tolerant, with racism quite good – years ago I ran anti-racist training, but with regards to women I have never felt control of myself – I am definitely not detached. I have detached myself from women in many ways, I live alone and have no desire for a relationship, but this is not mental detachment – real detachment, nature says I can never be completely detached. To overcome this attachment when I speak of women the only legitimate way I can speak is PC.
But being PC is not always easy.
Here is a clip of Jane Fonda taken from her talk on her book “My Life so Far” at university of Santa Barbara:-
Jane Fonda describes herself as a feminist but does she speak for all women?
In the talk she says “patriarchy is not to be replaced with matriarchy, patriarchy has to be replaced with democracy”, is this analysis appropriate in the world of the 1%? Stereotypically the 1% are white and male but patriarchy in my view is a consequence of the 1%-system rather than the cause. Historically those with power were men, those men have developed 1%-world so that they can accumulate wealth. Because they were men that world has characteristics that could be described as patriarchy but the objective is accumulation. There is no desire amongst wealthy men to share wealth with other men, but it is also true that the characteristics of patriarchy enable the 1% to accumulate. It would be beneficial for humanity to break down the patriarchical structure as that structure inherently benefits the 1%.
Jane describes feminism as “movement into whole being for both men and women”. If a man makes the effort to be a whole being slowly his sexism would disappear. In other words sexism is not a characteristic of a compassionate whole male, it is a characteristic of the conditioning that men are subjected to, what Jane calls manhood. It is a characteristic of the process of whole being that any ism that does not treat all as equal disappears. It is important to investigate this further. Part of whole being is the emergence of zen, the essence of intuition, insight, truth, compassion, unity and wholeness; this essence is not different for women or men, white or black, Muslims, Christians or Buddhists. I do hope feminism is concerned with whole being for all but I am not sure. Emergence of zen removes the conditioning but what that is differs for all people. The conditioning is different for men, for women, for black, for white, for Christians, for Muslims etc. These are conditioned characteristics of who we are, and what is necessary is for each person to see the nature of those characteristics in themselves and remove that conditioning. For a man to describe the conditioning of a woman is impossible. When Jane describes the need for man to find his heart, it is only something she can observe (her 7-year-old grandson) or glean from research – especially research involving case studies where men describe themselves. However here I agree, it is good to say that man needs to find his heart.
The issue of gender has an additional problem. In nature there are roles for women and men – the obvious one being procreation. Nature imprints certain behaviours on women and men to ensure procreation, how do we distinguish those behaviours from the social conditioning? Due to social conditioning a person’s sexual orientation can bring them into conflict with society to such an extent that there have been LGBT suicides. This is shameful. But how does conditioning impact on those of heterosexual orientation? I observe the conditioning that implies I am unusual for not marrying – the conditioning that says as an old man I should still be seeking a relationship. These conditionings fit in with nature but are they always appropriate? Are there other roles that nature imprints? Is it not important to determine what these roles are, so that we do not have a conflict between nature and conditioning?
Jane describes ownership of self. She describes adolescent girls emptying of being, and in this emptiness seeing themselves in terms of relationship with boys. On a personal note I have observed this in schools amongst adolescent girls across the world, and I consider that emptying process soul-destroying for the girls and deeply saddening for me as I was never able to counter this social conditioning. If, by ownership of self, Jane means a process of removing conditioning and accepting the whole being as who she is, then I have wholehearted agreement. But there is a concern. Female emptiness could be seen as a shell where preoccupation with the idea of a perfect body for the relationship with men is the set of ideas that the girl tries to live by. “Being a man”, or manhood, is a set of ideals that boys are conditioned to live by. But what if there were no ideas at all for people to live by, just be yourself – live for now.
In this talk Jane talks much of her relationships with different men, and draws conclusions about men accordingly. When I speak “off the record” I discuss past relationships with women, and draw conclusions about women. However these can only be a subjective view about a few women – as I was in relationship with them, and when I generalise are those views appropriate as a description of all women? Unfortunately as a human being those subjective conclusions become most of my experience and therefore the basis of my conclusions. It is hard for me to dismiss that analysis but if I am to be detached and PC I have to dismiss that, detach myself from that past experience, and attempt to find women’s views that can form the basis for my analysis. Whilst I don’t feel Jane discusses all that I wish to determine, it is a good place to start, hence I have edited her clip to discuss.
Finally I wish to speak about the manosphere, what a horrendous group of men they are. But they are addressing an issue that has arisen, using Jane’s terms this issue could be considered as replacing patriarchy with matriarchy. When horrendous men say they are being disempowered it is best to ignore them, but are good men discussing this? One of the consequences of PC is that such good men do not air their voice. It is a form of oppression. A good man might feel that there is a need to voice a concern about gender relations but is unable to do so because it would be felt as not PC to do this. This places an onus on analysis. For years men dominated and analysed. Their analysis was a failure in the area of women because that analysis failed to analyse their treatment of women and how to adjust accordingly. Often the treatment of women was violent, and this was the main factor I understand for the development of feminism; it is a factor Eve Ensler repeats. Because of this PC oppression analysis needs to be complete. Whilst men have demonstrably oppressed women and their analysis has been weak, as there is increasing power for women – by no means equal – analysis needs to ask whether good men are able to express themselves. “Men from the manosphere” – as a generalisation – were the source of the “feminist” movement by their oppression, it is important for the voice of good men to be heard. With PC oppression this is not always possible so I do hope feminist analysis will be complete and not simply a response to male oppression.
Learning about feminism from FondaPosted: 21/05/2016 in ONE planet, Struggle
Tags: JaneFonda, PC feminism