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The process of modern discourse

by Greg Krehbiel on 5 December 2017

If you know that Horace is a liberal, you’ll interpret anything he says as if it has a liberal bias, even if there is no liberal bias in what he said. And if you think Nina is an idiot, you’ll read her things to assume she’s wrong, even when she’s not.

That’s just the way it works now. We’ve adopted an attitude that goes roughly like this.

1. What bucket does this vile being swim in?
2. What is the general context of the comment?
3. What are the standard mistakes / problems with those people in that context?
4. How can I read those mistakes into what this person wrote?
5. How can I get offended by it, make a big stink out of it, and get right-minded people to help me destroy this creeping thing?

That’s what happens, for example, with “Baby it’s cold outside.”

1. This song is from a man.
2. The general context is dating relationships.
3. Men are always trying to trick / pressure women into having sex.
4. I can twist the words to sound like she’s seriously resisting and he’s not letting her go.
5. I can fuss and complain and call the song “the Christmas date rape song” and make sure all my friends criticize it too.

When someone seems to be in our bucket, we heap praise on them and eviscerate their enemies. “Enemies” being people who post anything other than “me too, you amazing genius.”

2017-12-05  »  Greg Krehbiel

Talkback x 17

  1. William
    5 December 2017 @ 3:18 pm

    Hasn’t it always been this way to a degree? People have blind spots when it’s comes to views that are different than their own. Yet, I suspect it’s been somewhat exacerbated by social media. People aren’t so polite in expressing their opinions these days and will say it more directly. In the good ole days, certain groups wouldn’t invite “those people” to social events or engage them in open discussions. They’d subtly snipe and build likeminded coalitions.

    That said, is it really such a stretch that lyrics to “Baby, It’s Cold Outside” would lead a reasonable person to conclude that a man is attempting to seduce a woman? Doesn’t she say no repeatedly and somewhat resists his advances? I know the song is intended to be fun, flirty and good natured. Obviously it’s not rape but it’s rather suggestive and provocative. Besides, what’s a good girl doing alone with a man drinking and smoking at night? πŸ™‚

  2. Greg Krehbiel Greg Krehbiel
    5 December 2017 @ 3:20 pm

    What she’s doing is playing hard to get and expressing the cultural barriers and negative consequences she’d have to face if she did what she so clearly wants to do.

  3. Robin R.
    5 December 2017 @ 3:28 pm

    They’re gonna construe Led Zeppelin’s “Whole Lotta Love” as the theme song for a rapist. He says that he is gonna give her every inch of his love, but he does not at point in the song ask for permission to do that.

  4. Greg Krehbiel Greg Krehbiel
    5 December 2017 @ 3:32 pm


  5. William
    5 December 2017 @ 3:32 pm

    @Greg, she may be doing as you suggest. Yet, the guy is clearly trying to get in her pants too. So, are people wrong for seeing that aspect of it too?

  6. Robin R.
    5 December 2017 @ 3:32 pm

    *at any point

  7. Greg Krehbiel Greg Krehbiel
    5 December 2017 @ 3:34 pm

    @William, no, it’s not wrong to see that. Of course he wants her. What’s wrong is to turn it into something ugly and predatory. It’s just the dance of courtship.

  8. Robin R.
    5 December 2017 @ 3:37 pm

    He is trying to get in her pants and she really wants him to. I can’t think of anything more expressive of the mentality of the patriarchy – except maybe “Whole Lotta Love” which thinly disguises PIV (penis in vagina) as love.

  9. Greg Krehbiel Greg Krehbiel
    5 December 2017 @ 3:42 pm

    I know “patriarchy” is a bad word for many people. Remember that for me it means, “Ah, yes. Good stuff.” πŸ™‚

  10. William
    5 December 2017 @ 3:43 pm

    Well, Nine Inch Nails has Zeppelin’s “Whole Lotta Love” beat. They get right to it with their song…”F*** You Like an Animal”.

  11. Robin R.
    5 December 2017 @ 3:44 pm

    Yeah, you just wanna see them kept barefoot and pregnant.

  12. Robin R.
    5 December 2017 @ 3:48 pm

    We folks from the Led Zeppelin generation are very quaint.

  13. William
    5 December 2017 @ 3:51 pm

    “You people” may be quaint…but today many ain’t πŸ˜‰

  14. Robin R.
    5 December 2017 @ 3:57 pm

    It makes me feel like a saint! πŸ™‚

  15. William
    5 December 2017 @ 3:59 pm

    QUOTE: Of course he wants her. What’s wrong is to turn it into something ugly and predatory. It’s just the dance of courtship.

    Courtship or a man attempting to seduce a woman into premarital sex?

  16. Robin R.
    5 December 2017 @ 4:02 pm

    Courtship is when the guy sits in the parlor while she plays the piany or when they sit together in a porch swing holding hands – and nothing more than that!

  17. William
    5 December 2017 @ 4:06 pm

    @Robin, that’s what I thought. Yet, the song “seems” to suggest the guy wants a little more than sitting together, holding hands. Just saying. πŸ˜‰

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