"For those of you honestly concerned. I don't support weev, that's not given in how I define friendship. I believe white folks should engage with the racists in their life … and I believe all people are redeemable, and "all people" is all people."
That's an admirable perspective.
She is clearly not racist or anything else herself. She is a casualty of the reactionary zeitgeist.
Lest we all forget the words of one of the greatest Americans in history, Martin Luther King Jr., here is a portion of his speech from Dexter Baptist Church delivered in Montgomery Alabama in 1957:
"So I want to turn your attention to this subject: "Loving Your Enemies." It’s so basic to me because it is a part of my basic philosophical and theological orientation—the whole idea of love, the whole philosophy of love. In the fifth chapter of the gospel as recorded by Saint Matthew, we read these very arresting words flowing from the lips of our Lord and Master: "Ye have heard that it has been said, ‘Thou shall love thy neighbor, and hate thine enemy.’ But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them that despitefully use you; that ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven."
Certainly these are great words, words lifted to cosmic proportions. And over the centuries, many persons have argued that this is an extremely difficult command. Many would go so far as to say that it just isn’t possible to move out into the actual practice of this glorious command. They would go on to say that this is just additional proof that Jesus was an impractical idealist who never quite came down to earth. So the arguments abound. But far from being an impractical idealist, Jesus has become the practical realist. The words of this text glitter in our eyes with a new urgency. Far from being the pious injunction of a utopian dreamer, this command is an absolute necessity for the survival of our civilization. Yes, it is love that will save our world and our civilization, love even for enemies."
I treat anyone in my family with a "long handled spoon" whose whole topic of conversation is about "those White folks" don't want to see "us" get ahead, and "they" are all alike or "them foreigners" are taking all of our jobs.
I don't need that crap in my life. Not only from a moral perspective, but they are insulting people I consider friends, hang out with, and at the end of the day, I have far more in common with than the people making the remarks.
Also, from a practical standpoint, I know they are probably talking about my family who are almost poster children "liberal elite".
I spent my first first two years in the States bullied and called various ethnic slurs by classmates. My brother who attended the same school and grade only 6 years later never felt or received any of that, partly due to his knowledge of the English language, but also because blatant racism became totally unacceptable in grade school by that time.
Now, do I hold a grudge against an entire race for that? No, in fact, my first few friends even then were all caucasians. But I can certainly see someone who grew up 10 years before be harboring some resentment because I've also seen how rapidly racial remarks can fall out of favor.
I think my parents' families serve as a perfect case study. My parents who are now in their 70s and have been married 50 years were high school sweet hearts. They both grew up and went to school together in the segregated South and both of their parents were poor but they did scrape by.
All of my parents siblings went to the same segregated school. My mom and her four siblings all graduated from some type of post secondary school - teachers, nurses, and one that owns his own car repair business. Out of my dad's siblings, he was the only one to graduate from high school or college. One side, all of them beat the odds and experienced upward mobility and the other side for the most part didn't.
So which side of the family do you think I'm referring to when I say I have to deal with some of them with a long handled spoon?
My parents and more so my grandparents dealt with the brunt of the Jim Crow South. But my parents made sure that they balanced making me aware of our history without allowing me to use that as an excuse or be resentful. Of course they didn't tell me any of this while I was going to a predominantly White private school....
This reminds me of a podcast, incidentally "The Daily" produced by NYTimes, where a former white nationalist tells a quite fascinating story about how he completely changed his mind about the white nationalist movement after being regularly invited to dinners by his Jewish friend whom he met in college.
If anyone is interested, the episode can be found here: https://dfkfj8j276wwv.cloudfront.net/episodes/d7b8650b-3ef3-...
It saddens me that so many people think that it is unforgivable to have a history of friendship with a person like that, and I am genuinely scared that the fear of backlash from the internet means that public figures will be forced to reinforce a stereotypical good/evil picture of society. Then we will truly all lose in the end.
It's utterly juvenile and should be condemned by our thinkers and influencers.
Engaging with people and being friends with them are different things.
I did have an annoyingly frustrating conversation yesterday with someone I had to work really hard to convince the footage from the Tesla in orbit wasn't shot in a studio. I'd call him a friend, I think. Definitely have some big rifts of views though.
I'm not sure I agree with any argument made in favor of being friends with white supremacists. Defend their right to free speech and engage in debate? Sure. But society should strongly condemn and criticize them for racist thoughts and words. Freedom of speech doesn't guarantee you freedom from consequence of those words.
I have an alcoholic friend. Does that mean I believe alcoholism is healthy?
I have an anarchist friend. Do I call for the end of government?
I have a Muslim friend. Does that mean I abide by Sharia?
Of course not. If I must agree with every view a person holds in order to be friends with them, I shall sooner or later find I have but one friend - myself.
Edit: I feel this also applies to politicians. Sometimes I just dislike all the candidates for a given election, but for different reasons. And I have to choose which of my principles I value the most. It's awful! But it's reality.
Not everyone feels that way.
I could associate with terrible people for work or to try and get them to be less terrible, but I couldn't be friends with them.
In that case I have no friends. Nor I believe I'll ever have. All of my friends have some conflicting opinions. Not just with me but between all of us.
I don't think people should be valued as a sum of their parts. People are an aggregation of experiences opinions ans characteristics. We should evaluate each part individually.
Example: John Doe is an excellent programmer, a 10x programmer even. But he is known to have a neo-nazi blog. One thing is "good2 and the other is "bad". Does being a neo-nazi make him a bad programmer? No. Does him being a 10x programmer make his social ideas good? No. He is both things. One "good", the other "bad". And they can live side by side.
Based on John's opinions I probably wouldn't invite him to dinner at my house. But I would damn sure go to him if I had a programming problem.
The most efficient way to understand and predict the actions of your enemy then by befriending and walking among them.
That's odd. May I ask how old you are, and what culture/country you're from?
Obviously, not everyone who's a lower-income white person is racist.
Nor do I support racist views -- just saying that ignoring people will not help effect change. MLK was a genius and great person.
This does not mean those attitudes are good. Far from it. But we must try to empathize with all people. Which is much easier to do when, as MLK advocated, we love all people.
There's a great video from the 80s called "The Color of Fear" which has a bunch of randomly-chosen people of various ethnicities put into a room, who slowly start to talk about more and more uncomfortable subjects.
There's fear. There's lack of empathy for problems which don't affect you personally. There's even outright hate. These are different problems with different solutions.
Look at all the conservative religious voters voted for Trump, despite him being nothing like what they describe as an ideal candidate, and often believing he's been unfaithful to his wife or lying about his religious beliefs.
People often don't know what they want, or have reasons to lie about it. Talking to people about what they want is often ineffective.
My problem with voters is that they're not willing to take enough risks. The "Throwing away your vote" meme was election tampering just as much as the Russian Facebook ads.
Another observation is that we've created an environment where we condone hate on some people, even by progressives.
Basically the rule is, it's not okay to hate, unless its directed against the outgroup of society.
It's sort of like how people say "well, some African Americans are racists too." Well, yeah but 90% of CEOs are white, so if they're racist against you, you're in more trouble on average than if the other 10% discriminate against you.
Aren't there lots of interactions that people can have with each other besides discussing topics such as race, or nation, (or gender, or sexuality)? Why are people so willing to define themselves by their stance on any of these particular topics, to the point of being openly hostile to people with other positions on any of those subjects?
I can't speak for anyone else but for me, at pretty much the top of the privilege ladder, if I don't push back on the people who want to hurt others for their own gain, I'm just as bad as them. Which does make me openly hostile to racists, misogynists, homophobes, etc., yes but, I'm hopeful, also on the right side of history (and, yes, atoning for past sins when I was less understanding.)
Now, I don't mean any offense, and I am sure you are a wonderful person, but doesn't the phrase above translate into you wanting to hurt (~ push back on) certain people for your own gain (i.e. for your peace of mind)?
Sure, you can read it like that but then you'd be equating e.g. "denial of basic human rights" on their part with "me vocally and publically disagreeing with them". Which seems like a really daft stance to take.
Specifically #2, #3, #6, #7, #9.
> Do these people have the power to grant or deny any rights to anyone
They advocate that these rights should be removed from people. In some countries, where you have similarly aligned people in charge (like the US), these denials of rights eventually get made into law.
Also, based on your performance in this thread I'm not sure the Texans should take all the blame in this particular case.
The words she used in the past don't seem to have been used with the intention of belittling anyone. While it's probably unwise to use them at all, I doubt her intent was to hurt others.
And I'll quote MLK whenever I want. His words may make you uncomfortable because they preach love of people you disagree with, something you may not support, but they are his words.
Reading the comment by @meri_dian I initially thought "ok she had a non-pc racist friend and supported them. Then by association she was deemed to risky for NYTimes". That by itself is a not "character damning" to her, but you can see how a company would want to distance themselves.
Then i read her actual tweets, where she actually called people slurs. That is not defend-able, and I think she deserves it.
There's an old story about a dude named Jesus that hung out with the deplorables of his time, and it got him killed. Whether or not you believe it actually happened it's got a good moral, and that is: The people in power don't like the people who actually engage with the enemy, you might find that they are people too, or you might actually persuade them to fix their evil ways and then you can't hate them any more. They would rather sit in their ivory towers and do nothing. When someone actually talks with people to try and understand their mindset it makes those ivory tower dwellers look bad for not actually doing anything.
In some cases Quinn seems to be bantering with her gay friends. Quinn is queer herself.
In other cases she is calling out some 4chan person, for unknown reasons since they deleted their account. Norton is using the common lingo on that site. Especially at the time, on 4chan, everyone was a fag. Being a "fag" on 4chan or certain IRC channels was a complex identity. It was acknowledgement of being a high school social outcast who got called a "fag", and also part of a community that's turned that hate inwards, and is merciless towards outsiders and even each other.
And yes, it's also a slur against gay people and it causes many people pain to read it.
These aspects of internet culture are hideous and awful. It's also the culture that Norton fell into, and grew out of. I suspect many people here are the same.
Where she is right now? Was she a good pick for the NYTimes?
She's complicated. In her personal life she can be very, very difficult to deal with, and her associations are questionable. (Like probably all of your favorite writers from other eras!)
But there isn't anyone else writing with her compassion and understanding about what's happening with young men online in odd technical corners of the internet. And her prescription, that compassion and understanding are the way out – some may find it naive, but I see no other plausible response to the rise of fascism in developed countries today.
I encourage everyone to read her works.
I'd definitely call out it's use today, but I'm not sure I'd hunt someone down and try to ruin their career over them using language they shouldn't have five years ago.
It seems to me poor and distasteful use of language is a pretty reasonable reason to not want someone in that position.
There are plenty of outlets for idiot 4chan style insults in the world, I'm not sure we really need people from that community holding one of the top positions in tech journalism and opinion writing.
Not that it really pertains in this case, but personally, I'm pretty glad that there was no social media prior to my being an established adult professional in a role that made me very aware anything I wrote was out there for all to see and interpret.
Right. People with no skin in the game often want companies to do the right/heroic/etc. thing. Even leaving aside what the appropriate action in this particular case is, the reality is that when there's a mob or the likelihood of one that wants your head, your employer is probably going to think about it for about 10 seconds and then toss you off the deck. "It's just business" as Bill Belichick would put it. We can all think of plenty other examples over the past few years.
Reading the RT itself, I think it’s clear she is AGAINST racism.
And it was definitely sarcastic, in nature. If you remove the loaded language, it's a bit easier to parse, I think: "If a black man was meant to talk to our schoolchildren, God would've made one President. Oh, wait, he did."
Ergo, a black man was, indeed, meant to talk to our schoolchildren.
I'm not sure why some people get teflon and others don't.
In the unlikely case that that was not rhetorical, how much overlap do you think there is between the nytimes readership and Trump's base?
More than you'd think, apparently, given their editorial stance that leans heavily towards normalising his supporters and actions.
ADDED: Of course, if you want to be an authentic disruptive Silicon Valley startup you'd offer both this service and a service for end users to expunge any online content that would be flagged by their employer service. Should be good for some fawning tech press writeups.
However, in terms of a startup product that companies would pay for, I stand by my claim that it's a great idea. After all, HN is ran by yCombinator and startups are kind if its thing.
That's a really big deal. And for most people, that situation is a) unfortunate, b) unwelcome, and c) confusing in the extreme. People talk a lot with close friends about such a situation just to get a handle on it, to remain honest about the affection they feel while refraining from apologizing for the terrible person's behavior. It's usually painful to come to terms with it. Especially if the terrible person still acts unapologetically to hurt other people.
No one I know tweets casually about something like that, much less humble brags about the terrible person friends they've collected.
I don't think this is about someone befriending someone else who merely has a different, detestable point of view. This is palpably worse.
This is about befriending someone who advocates for withholding the right to live -- in a sense, for taking away the right of millions to have any point of view. I think that's a big difference.
I'm saddened to learn that she was Aaron Swartz's romantic interest. And I'm saddened that no comments here seem to have noticed that this is simply not about a mere disagreement.