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Make the political personal

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  • Make the political personal

    Hello, everyone.

    I'm really glad that this section has been started, as I am a big fan of philosophy, and I'm just starting to develop my own theories. I'm sure you have all heard the feminist mantra "make the personal political", whereby personal damage is projected into the political sphere, and the state is invited to intervene in ever more imaginative ways in the running of the personal. I would postulate that the current political and academic trends relating to social justice, feminism and post-modernism may if internalized, function in the reverse, teaching anti-logic and encouraging damaging and dysfunctional beliefs to take hold in ones personal life. In light of this I have decided to make a series of posts relating to "making the political personal", as in protect the personal from the political, asking the questions: How do certain political and ideological concepts harm an individual or an individuals ability to reason? and how do we protect ourselves from internalizing the damaging side of these concepts, whilst debating them on their own terms?

    1) The attachment of shame to ones identity.

    My take is below, but please offer up your own opinion or critique. I'm particularly interested in finding out how this relates to existing schools of philosophy.

    I started a thread asking 'what are rights?' a little while ago, which was enlightening for me, because I had never made the distinction between inalienable and given rights. Since then I have been considering that there is an inalienable human right implicit to the others, which is rarely mentioned. This is the right to self identification, and is extremely valuable when considering the political power individuals wield by assuming representation of others.

    A few real life examples:

    One is automatically a life long member of the catholic church when they are baptized, however they must be excommunicated if they wish to no longer be represented by the church, which places a coercive effect on the individual through their family, and community. The individual cannot remove support without coercion to identify.

    "If you believe in equality of the sexes then you are a feminist", and "If you are not a feminist, then you are a bigot, there is nothing in between"

    In these cases those who form the ideology have claimed ownership of an idea, which may exist in many different forms, and in pursuit of numerical representation and consensus attempt to claim representation of anyone who shares that idea. The association with a given group is no longer a matter of individual choice, but defined by those within the group. It usually comes down to this:

    1) If you believe in X good thing you are an ____ist. If your are not an ____ist, then you are against X good thing. Then: ____ists represent X good thing, and all the people effected by it, if you take away their power, you are automatically attacking those affected.

    2) Real men do Y, Real women do X, Real people do Z, replace real with True or pure, and people with any religion or ideology.

    Both of these make use of shame to coerce others. In the case of 1) shame is used to coerce non-identifiers into identifying, and in the case of 2) shame is used to radicalize those who already identify.

    This right does not exist in law, because it is impossible to police shaming, and peoples responsiveness to it. I do however believe that it is necessary to have an understanding of it in order to defend against those who would use our own morality against us.

    The attachment of shame to a persons identity, and the successful internalization of that shame is an admission of guilt. The only way to absolve oneself of that guilt is to request forgiveness, or to be a greater victim than the person you are shamed by (think oppression Olympics). A third and better option is to refuse to be shamed by others. To make your shame conditional on an internally chosen set of moral principles.

    As part of their belief system, both ideologies mentioned above have a conception of guilt one can be born into, regardless of your actions or status. The catholic church has original sin, and the feminist movement has white male privilege. The only way to be absolved of this shame is to live your life by their moral code, and do either the work of the lord in the case of the catholic church, or take responsibility for the advancement and protection of women in the case of feminism.
    Socrates: \"I know one thing: that I know nothing\"

  • #2
    RE: Make the political personal

    I oppose feminism because I want a separation between church and state.