Well that was an interesting day! I was still getting used to the idea of being able to post WHATEVER I WANT to GT and then bam, mainpaged – meaning that my notifications just exploded my computer forever. I don’t even know how to respond to everything; having been away from the internet during my post’s formative hours, I feel like responding to most of the comments in thread would be superfluous and I’m really fighting hard not to argue with libertarians. So I figured I’d address the three main reactions I’ve received right here, right now!
1. Libertarianism isn’t misogynistic/racist; aka you were never a libertarian
Perhaps pure libertarianism isn’t misogynist or racist, and I don’t believe that libertarians themselves are necessarily misogynists or racists. The libertarians that frequent Jez seem to have issues following chronology, too. Several applied the views I held during my time as a social conservative to my time as a libertarian as evidence that I’m too stupid to understand libertarianism.
Libertarians also love derailing the conversation. They have a lot in common with anti-feminists in that regard (and in fact, many of them are one and the same!). Many took issue with the fact that I wrote about trying to read Atlas Shrugged and decided it was time to educate me on REAL LIBERTARIANS. It was basically taking me to task for not laying out the entire libertarian philosophy in a blog post about not being a libertarian anymore. Either they’re purposely trying to derail the conversation or they don’t understand the idea of brevity. This essay was already clocking in at over 2100 words; I figured I was already in tl;dr territory.
And in reality, libertarianism, as it is now, absolutely advocates for policies that will perpetuate privilege. Maybe it’s not actively misogynistic, or racist, or transphobic, or homophobic, but the outcomes are the same. I’m sorry (not sorry), but “In a truly free market…” is basically the economic equivalent of “I’m not racist, but…” We don’t have a truly free market and we never will.
2. You were an asshole and now you’re not; do you want a cookie?
No, I don’t want, need, or deserve a cookie. This might be partially because the people on the mainpage don’t know my history as well as you all, but this is a story that a lot of people have asked me to tell. It’s not a blueprint for everyone; lots of people were raised in conservative areas and didn’t have the stupid hateful viewpoints that I had. This is just MY STORY. If I may interpret my own story, I’ve tried to make it a story of humility as much as anything. I certainly am guilty of patting myself on the back at times, but my “redemption story” (which it really isn’t) is about figuring out that, in fact, I’m not special and that, in fact, I have less insight than most people. I try to be more tax collector and less Pharisee.
I think about these things a lot, especially when people in the comments actually suggest I withdraw my voice after posting my essay. I’m not claiming to be a leader, but victims of oppression can’t be the only voices against oppression. I’m just trying to be an ally, and quite frankly, it insults me when someone says “yeah, that’s great, but go argue with your friends when they say something misogynistic and we’ll talk.” Thanks for the insinuation of complete hypocrisy, but I’m already doing that.
3. This is great/all the gifs/absolute fucking outpouring of loves
This was by far the most common reaction, and I’m still fairly overwhelmed by it. I don’t really have all that much to add. I sincerely appreciate all of you (and the Jezzies that aren’t over here that expressed support!) and in return, I want to give you all the gifs!
Now, GTers, I have a question for you. I’ve had a couple of people tell me that I should do a regular or semi-regular Q&A sesh on GT where you could ask me questions about MRAs or one of the other things I was, since that’s an area where I would have a viewpoint that’s actually kind of unique and not common on here and might be truly relevant, if for no other purpose than morbid curiosity and to learn how other people think. I’d surely be glad to do it if there’s sufficient interest, so let me know here if that’s something you’d be interested in reading and, if so, if you have any input on the format, frequency, etc. So what do you say, GroupThink?