Saturday, October 31, 2015

Social Justice Warriors?

On conservative websites and discussion groups, people complain about "Social Justice Warriors" or "SJWs" - what are these supposed to be and do they really exist?

One thing more annoying than a "Children of Narcissists" movement website is one of these new conservative "Men's Rights" websites and discussion groups.    They are part of an inter-linked web of folks in various conservative groups, all repeating the same sorts of political views, reinforcing each others beliefs, and basically shouting down anything that sounds even remotely threatening to their world view.

And like the Children of Narcissists folks, they use a litany of acronyms and code words when they communicate - as if knowing all this swell lingo somehow made it all make sense.

Some of them are the "red pill" people, for example, who subscribe to a fellow who wrote a book on "how to pick up women."   They spend a lot of time complaining about false rape allegations and feminism and whatnot, which tells you a lot about how good a guide to women this "pickup" book is.  Apparently the "red pill" is Rohypenol, not a reference to The Matrix.

And they all have universal disdain for the "SJW" and what they view as the feminization of men in our modern era.

Oh, and they are shocked - shocked I tell you - to discover that college campuses are hotbeds of liberal thought (as if this was not a trend dating back to the middle ages!).  Imagine that, college kids being liberal?  Whoda thunk it?  (Even at General Motors Institute, I can assure you the student population was more liberal than the norm).

But what are "Social Justice Warriors" and do they really exist?   The SJW is posited as a person willing to attack or pile-on in an attack on others, usually online, based on so-called "social justice" issues, but does so not because they actually believe in these issues but to heighten their own social standing and reputation.  It is a very odd definition, to say the least.  What sort of "social standing" do people have in anonymous discussion groups?

To me, the term might mean something else.    I do see a lot of young people today, who, like young people of all ages, tend to resort to knee-jerk liberalism.  They believe, for example, that being poor is a condition that occurs when you have bad luck or when evil capitalists take your money away - and that nothing the poor person does is responsible for their plight.   This is not to say people are not victims in this world, but very, very few of us are entirely innocent actors.   Believe it or not, what we do with our own lives tends to have a great effect on how our lives turn out.  Personal choices, in the end, outweigh social trends, on a personal level.

The  "SJW" type also views the homeless as beatified.   The homeless are noble and kind people who are also victims of circumstance (as opposed to say, mental illness or drug and alcohol abuse) and to even question their beatitude is to be a cruel heartless bastard who probably works for a big evil corporation.

Which leads to the next criterion:  Shaming and Damning.   The "SJW" loves to shame and damn others as being insensitive and "not caring" about people "less fortunate" than themselves.  According to the SJW, the real measure of a society is how it treats its "least fortunate" members, not in its real accomplishments.

But of course, this basically describes any 20-something who has been to college and hasn't had enough experience in life to see otherwise.  Once his bicycle is stolen by that noble homeless man, or one of the noble poor sticks a gun in his face to get crack money, his opinions may change.   Once he spends 60 hours a week to pay off his student loans and pay the rent - while others get subsidized housing for doing very little - he may change his mind.  He will change his mind.   Most folks do.
"If you’re not a socialist before you’re twenty-five, you have no heart; if you are a socialist after twenty-five, you have no head."
My brother and I illustrate how this works.   When he was in college, he would keep a copy of Chairman Mao's "little red book" in his back pocket and spout off college-age nonsense about how "the workers" were being exploited by the "big evil corporations" and "capitalism" which, of course, it goes without saying, should be abolished.

How I spent my college years.

Meanwhile, I was actually working in a factory, working on machines like the one above, sharing meals (and drinks) with "the workers" who all to a man thought people like my brother were commie hippie punks who should have their heads smashed in.   Yes, the average hard-hat "worker" back then voted for Nixon - twice.   They didn't want commie bullshit, then or now.

The contrast in theory and practice astounded me.   My brother with his academic theories formed in isolation, really had no clue what was going on, as he lacked experience in the real world outside of classroom exams and papers.

And if you think about it, most college-age kids are this way.  Their experience in the working world may be non-existent or very brief.   Even if they had some sort of summer job, chances are they didn't learn much about running a business from it.

So yea, college kids buy into weak thinking and self-indulgent fantasies like Socialism.   I met a nice young 25-year-old the other day, and he told me in all seriousness that we should switch to a socialist society and that everyone should be paid the same amount.   I didn't even try to argue with him, as there would be no point in doing so.   He will learn, over time, that such ideas sound swell when you are young and being paid squat.   But when you work harder, you want to earn more - at least more than the guy who clocks in and leans against the coffee machine all day long.

And to some extent, that was the problem we had at the factories I worked in.    Everyone was paid the same union wages, according to a scheme based on seniority, not your value to the company or how hard you worked.   And the real workers resented the slackers, and as a result, tended to slack off themselves.

But getting back to the "SJW", do such people really exist?  Or is it just a catch-all label that conservatives like to slap on anyone who disagrees with them?   I tend to think the latter, as in these "discussion groups" there really isn't much discussion other than - like the "SJW's" they revile - the shaming and damning of anyone with an even slightly liberal viewpoint.  Same shit, different day.

And that brings us to the point of this posting.   You can waste your life away being an "SJW" and spending countless hours devoted to "causes" and whatnot.   But you can also waste your life away being a "Men's Rights Advocate" or some other such silly nonsense.

Being a causista - be it liberal or conservative - is just a waste of your own personal energy.   You are not going to save the world and be the "hero" by fixing our political or social system, simply because this will not occur.    You are better off spending the energy on your own life and improving that.   If everyone did this, half the trouble in the world would evaporate overnight.
Q: How many PETA members does it take to change a lightbulb?
A: None, because PETA can't change anything.
It is fine to have opinions and all, but changing the world is a very hard thing to do - and to try to do it at the expense of your own personal welfare is not being noble or altruistic, but just stupid and annoying to the rest of us.

But sadly, these sort of folks will never see that.   They will continue to attack each other and dissipate their own personal energy fighting other people's battles (even if they perceive them to be their own).

Just a thought.  If you spend a lot of time on causista websites, tossing around acronyms like SJW or red pill, perhaps it may be time to re-think your priorities.