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Recent comments at Salon.com Oct. 31

WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 29, 2014 9:17 PM
Rex Harrison contessakitty SarahWestofToronto Maybe. But some art we've left by the wayside for good. Progressives have always wrestled with what you're wrestling with, and not always come to your conclusion. All great art gets produced during periods of latitude, where all of a sudden latitude, transgression, "the new" isn't just stomped on but allowed some life. This is why all great art sings so much ... it's all conveys human promise. 
But there is a psychological limit to how much anyone who feels the need to stigmatize and hate can realize, and eventually all their "truths" begin to seem insufficient -- "someone" is still watching over them. This could still be the fate of Shakespeare. 
And if he goes, thank you so much, Mr. Shakespeare! But along we go on this great human ride, embracing different voices!

WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 29, 2014 9:09 PM
contessakitty SarahWestofToronto I'm glad to hear of people giving up artists when they realize just what harm they did to other people in their lives. But the thing is, we get maybe a couple of periods every century where we allow enormous transgressive growth. However flawed, however angry and demon-possessed the people living during those times, they're going to go on a really productive ride.
Then it closes down. Maybe their children are healthier, overall more evolved, but their art may well be thinner. I'll wait to completely dismiss Cosby, Allen et al. after our sacrificial depression is over and we allow our society a restart. Otherwise, I'll be dismissing what we'll all just subsequently be using as our base. Remember, during the Great Depression Fitzgerald was wilfully ignored; you couldn't find Gatsby in the bookstores. That's the equivalent of the time we're in now. 


WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 29, 2014 9:00 PM
JustMe2 Maybe you "stretch your own heart and mind" by not taking so pleasure in the dismissal and shaming of a whole crowd of people. Enjoying your intimacy with Brittney is tainted if it depends on whole crowds of others not being as special. 

WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 29, 2014 7:43 PM
Jack Burroughs I think we do like to keep a shadow assembly of women who get humiliated without redress. I think a lot of women don't speak out because they sense that their society expects their category of women ("hangers-on to a celebrity") to remain powerless ("your" role is to allow yourself to be filled with our hate and disregard), and will get angry if they speak up. If we suddenly start listening to them, it's either because we've evolved or because we want this celebrity tested, maybe rejected (ala Clinton and Lewinsky). My sense is that if all this came up even last year, the women would have been in for it -- in no way were we ready for the fall of Ghomeshi. Maybe because for a Cdn he seems a bit too "ego," too full of himself, we want to see him tested and maybe totally disposed of right now. 
Whatever Strombo has been up to won't really matter. If he had the same problems, the women wouldn't be safe to air their abuses. Somehow he seems to us less pretentious, more self-chastising; and any attack on him would be on the average Cdn who'd be willing to serve up his life for his country ... a non-ego "ego." 

WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 29, 2014 7:08 PM
Barbrady777 Patrick McEvoy-Halston They do want the attention, and caregivers who have most of their own needs already attended will be up to it. Their children will not be resentful. 

Children who had caregivers who were not able to well attend to their children because their children existed too much to supply their own unmet/unaddressed needs for attention, will be pissed. They'll dominate to show they can be the ones in control; for revenge. 

Your theory makes the problem over-needy kids, which may not in your case but usually is about victim's blaming themselves (and agreeing with the abusers' point of view) to keep those they depend upon sacrosanct. 

WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 29, 2014 7:01 PM
@elbe @Patrick McEvoy-Halston This is just factually not true.  The majority of people who abuse women were raised in households where men were abusive.

I agree, but the men weren't there anywhere near as much, and the women, the mothers, were just as abusive as the fathers.
After being raised in an environment where there were only two possibilities modeled (being abused or being abusive), they subconsciously identify with their abuser because they don't want to identify with the abused.  T
They subconsciously identify with the abuser -- again, predominately the mother -- because not identifying with her would mean knowing she didn't really love you. To guarantee yourself that you in fact have a mother who loves you, you deem your own vulnerable, innocent self "guilty" ... she had reason. So in life what you do is you support governments which deny/destroy the innocent. 
You revenge yourself against mothers as well -- the terrifying strong (that's how we as infants knew our mothers -- Titanesses, Gods) -- but sort of sneakily. Nothing we do to hurt women in the world will be allowed to feed back as our anger at our mothers. So we'll be completely loyal to our mothers, defend her against everybody. We'll be completely loyal to our (mother) countries, be willing to defend Her against everybody. But we'll war the hell out of other women we can displace all her negative aspects onto; women, we collectively agree, who "deserved" it. 


WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 29, 2014 6:44 PM
I can only say: do you really see no problem with this way of thinking? I'm afraid it's wildly flawed as a mode of reasoning.
I'm arguing that our earliest years are most formative. I'm arguing that if you knew a life of hate and abuse you will not magically become nurturing to your children: they will exist to satisfy your own unmet needs; you will have difficulty not projecting onto them; you'll find it impossible to not hurt and neglect them (especially when their growth seems to threaten the same abandonment you've known all too much in life). 
So wildly flawed "reasoning"? No, if we weren't so dependent on defending our own mothers this would just come across as obvious; as something in need of a very serious effort in order to disprove.  

WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 29, 2014 6:38 PM
Barbrady777 Patrick McEvoy-Halston Sonya001 ashley Yes, I believe if you had a mother who was one of the fortunate in having been mostly respected and cherished in life, you'll be immune to hatred of women. You'll have no base of profound shame others will inadvertently play into, or who'll you'll force into playing into as part of re-staging. 
I'm not even sure if what we mean by that emotion --hate --  will apply to you at all .... your attitude towards someone like Rush Limbaugh might not even be to simply stop him, but more to help him (get better, and live a truly enjoyable and beneficent life). Not above others, of course; but still after stopping his current efforts, your primary concern. 

WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 29, 2014 6:26 PM
@Barbrady777 @Patrick McEvoy-Halston Okay, so is your argument actually that the only reason men engage in abusive behavior towards women is that they were themselves abused by women?  
Not "women" ... by their mothers: those all-important giants in their lives. Primary reason, not only ...but so important compared to it the rest doesn't much matter. 
Because it initially sounded like you were suggesting that any existing systemic bias against women arose from the fact that women abuse men.  
... comes from the fact that unloved, neglected, abused women abuse (make use of; wantonly abandon; hate) their boys. Yes, this is where systemic bias against women arose from. For our species, children likely owed their initial survival owing to the fact that they released pleasing hormones in their mothers; this got them their needed attendance, not their being loved and respected (we started off nearly exactly red and tooth in claw). The repercussions of this are the hundreds of thousands of years where human beings basically didn't grow; no adventure, just survival -- or rather, the enduring and re-inflicing abuse we see in aboriginal cultures.
History has fortunately been about some women discovering the ability to give a little bit more love to their daughters than they themselves received, and daughters of these mothers grouping together (moving if they have to) to create more progressive, more advanced societies. 
Nothing is more important that Katie's primary cause to eliminate hatred of women, to support women. The hate will ensure women get less love, and society will regress; become more mean and brutal.  


WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 29, 2014 6:12 PM
elbe When people recognize that good friends can also be criminals, more and more people will be more inclined to trust the victims.
That's optimistic. Many of us are perfectly good ol' boys in regular life, but persistently elect in regressive governments to rape and pillage other people. "We" split off our strongly felt but unappetizing needs, and are only going to go so far in accepting this twin nature in ourselves. 
What we'll probably hear is that ..."he was such a well-behaved, quiet, good-natured boy," and it'll get lost into mythology.  

WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 29, 2014 6:04 PM
Barbrady777 Sonya001 ashley To me what I am saying is so obvious (early childhood abuse by women is the only thing that could produce later intense desire to rape, humiliate, destroy women) it's like being asked to show proof that the sky is blue ... something else is amiss in those who need proof that no subsequent onslaught of studies will serve to allay. 

WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 29, 2014 5:56 PM
Barbrady777 Patrick McEvoy-Halston Do you think that the majority of people in our society suffer abuse at the hands of their mothers?
No. Any person you know who is genuinely feminist will have suffered no substantial abuse. Their mothers were those fortunate to come from a lineage where the women received progressively more support and love than others in their societies did. 
We focus on the father defensively. It is the mother who spends most of the time with the children, however much this is changing with more progressive couples.

WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 29, 2014 5:49 PM
Rocket88 Patrick McEvoy-Halston This does not make you a misogynist.
You're right. For example you could be someone who knows just how prevalent child abuse still is in society, someone who realizes that no one savagely hurts other people unless they've been terribly neglected/abused as children, and very easily love everybody -- be delighted by aspects of every person when they're not being motivated by the terrors they endured but by the love they received early in life and later through good people along the way. 
However, it could just be that they ARE misogynist, and "you" like them always in part because they're administering the hate you can't express yourself. 

WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 29, 2014 5:41 PM
Rocket88 It is not insane. They knew all the rumours and remained friends ... it's perfectly reasonable to suggest that they did so not despite but rather because
How prevalent is this desire to hurt and humiliate women. Will many dump Ghomeshi to deny from their conscious awareness their own long-possession of this powerful urge? 

WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 29, 2014 5:35 PM
@ashley @Patrick McEvoy-Halston What I wish you were concerned about is that most progressives would be willing to seriously consider that a child's earliest years are most formative. You could show them studies that show what child neglect/abuse does to the forming brain, and they'd be right with you. They'd also be with you in judging that the primary caregivers in families of abuse are those where the father -- however much a battering demon -- is mostly absent. But if you start suggesting that societal rage against women (patriarchy, what have you) owes to unloved mothers making use of their children (to supply their own unmet needs) rather than loving them, all your previous efforts dissipate. Suddenly you're just a demon guilty of mother-hate, and they go on retributive attack. 
There is no idea we're all more bent to defend than the idea of the loving mother -- for most of us, literally part of our brains are on watch to make sure we never see our own (unloved) mothers' abuses quite clearly. 

WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 29, 2014 5:22 PM
Christopher1988 Rocket88 They remained friends because at some level they were glad the women were being victimized. They disown now so to deny themselves of their own raging desire to revenge themselves upon women. It's in Ghomeshi, (so) not in them. 

WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 29, 2014 5:18 PM
But what it amounts to, and this is what Pallett and Bady both made clear, isn’t the presumption of innocence or a respect for due process, but a process through which we can ignore what’s in front of us to protect ourselves, to protect the ideas we have about our friends, the ideas we have about rape and the kinds of men who hurt women.
We protect ourselves from what the source of a man's need to rape/hurt has to be. You don't get "there" because the society you live in has been built to degrade women and salute men. That would heavily play on that kind of extreme rage towards women, but not in my judgment create it entire. That kind of rage has to built on early child abuse, some huge ongoing humiliation, terror, when your brain was still forming ... at the hands of a woman; your mother. 
Feminists protect themselves from an obvious truth to protect their idea of the mother. Namely, women who've been abused, grown up in a patriarchal society that degrades them, don't magically become loving mothers. Rather the opposite. But Katie, who I believe has recently argued that every woman has a story where they were coerced into sex that left them shamed (i.e. raped), never makes the connection that patriarchy begins as a defence; a defence against abused women who as mothers couldn't help but re-inflict their abuse upon their children. The patriarch is clung to out of fear of that all-powerful, terrifying, needy, abandoning and incestuous mother. 
Some men may appear to be feminists but are showing support out of fear. Fearing that society is being hovered over by a spurned, angry, retributive matriarch ("Gone Girl"), that they themselves have been guilty "bad boys," they cling to her defensively. If you explore their behaviour in any depth you'll likely notice that while they've kept "her" sacrosanct they've displaced all her negative aspects onto some "other." Some "other" you'll find it impossible to suppress their intentions to revenge themselves upon. 

Of course, those who protect the abuser and shame the victims are defensively identifying with their own parental abusers as well, who were surely right -- their brains by necessity have concluded -- to have humiliated their own terribly vulnerable selves as children. 

WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 29, 2014 2:56 PM
jazztrans Patrick McEvoy-Halston JustAGuest2 nothung The latter. Context showed that, though, no? I like the poetry of what I said, but with your prompt, it would have been more clear and still poetically intact if I'd said ..."the fact that to move beyond your parents you're going to have to brace (against) their formidable ire." 
Thanks for the input. 

WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 29, 2014 1:48 PM
JustAGuest2 nothung I'm fine with moving beyond "Cosby." On his show he always had the advantage over his kids; he was the patriarch, the bemused know-it-all. "Family Ties" had more of the family dissonance, the suggestion that kids might know better than parents. The fact that to move beyond your parents you're going to have to brace their formidable ire. I'd prefer we built off that instead. 

WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 29, 2014 1:35 PM
nothung Patrick McEvoy-Halston Helpful. Thank you. 

WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 29, 2014 1:30 PM
nothung Patrick McEvoy-Halston Brittney says she's concerned to dispose of both the patriarch and the matriarch. I think that is a great idea. However, I don't know where we could possibly find a matriarch since apparently women who've known abusive relationships with their husbands, don't become matriarchs when they've got their kids all to themselves. As Brittney says about her own mother, once she was free of her violent husband she was simply ... saved.
I'm suggesting it's possible that Brittney might not find herself strong enough to free herself of the matriarch once the patriarch is disposed of. In order to do that, you have to be capable of an honest opinion of your own mother, what she did to you, not just what your father did to you. 

If you can't do that then the patriarch is killed and you're left wallowing back in the matriarch's spoiled earth, without a language that'd help yourself get unstuck. 

WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 29, 2014 1:13 PM
My father was a complicated, brilliant, hilarious and violent man, and my home life and childhood were infinitely better after he left our home. His leaving and his alcoholism cost me a father. But it saved me a mother.
...
So I argued that we ought to slay our patriarch and matriarch and make room for some new ideas about what black life and black family can be in the 21st century.


What new idea of the family is being made available when the mother who is free of the useless, no-good father ... doesn't become the matriarch that too needs disposal? If we need to slay the patriarch, we know where to find them. But if even highly abused mothers, no longer beset upon by their oppressors, bear halos, where could we possibly find this clearly fictional idea of the "matriarch" -- the oppressive mother-ruler of the clan? 

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