30 October 2016

On Ejecting Friends

About a year ago I did something to a friend that had only been done to me.

I stopped talking to him.  Not about him, mind you.

I don't make friends easily or readily, so they're so very precious that I'd never.  EVER.  Be the one who cut the ties.

Being an abrasive and inflexible sort, I've had those ties cut by former friends a couple of times.

Then a few months later, I did it again.  To someone I had known far longer and was far closer to.

Why?

It ultimately boils down to the fact that I can be hated and ridiculed the same way by people I don't know or like and don't even pretend to like me.

People who aren't lying when they say they never considered my position on things, but have honestly opposed it before meeting me.

People who don't pretend that I am not the kind of person they despise fully and wholly.

I'll take the honest hate over duplicitous "friends" any day.

In the first case I think there was a "keep poking until Thag goes away on his own" because they'd said they'd never cut me loose.  It was only after that I noticed he was the only common thread that two people who were tag-team tormenting me had.  Almost as if he was providing information to them that allowed them to better dig under my thin skin.  While I was confiding in him about them doing so...

In the second case, she just forgot that I could see her replies to others on FaceBook and read what she thought of "icky conservatives" where she didn't think I could see.  She was engaged in bigotry, no doubt, against people who aren't fully liberal like she is.

It pisses me off to no end because I am also NOT the conservative that I sometimes appear to be.

I've always thought that LGBT PEOPLE were people and should have the exact same rights as anyone else.  I've always thought that any people should have those rights.

But the same rights.  Nobody gets a right that everyone else doesn't.

I've always been an armchair scientist.  I'm also an armchair political observer.  When "science" starts smelling like politics, it stands out to me.  No amount of burying me in links to news articles which link to a handful of press agencies which link to a single statement by a single scientist will shift me.

Want to convince me?  Link me to actual scientific papers.  Make sure you read them too, and you'd better understand them because I'm also the kind of autodidactic polymath who's going to learn enough to understand them myself.  See also burying me in links above.

It's very hard to not just start hating the people who hate me right back.  It's as simple minded as it can get.  People have decided to hate me because I am white and therefore racist.  People have decided to hate me because I am male and therefore sexist.  People have decided to hate me because I am straight and therefore homophobic.  People have decided to hate me because I own guns and therefore a latent murderer.  People have decided to hate me because I don't support huge raft of liberal goals and therefore I'm stupid (and sexist and racist and homophobic).

But you want to know something?  Engineering types see the world as it is, rather than how we wish it was.  While wishes will get a bridge built, wishes don't build bridges.  When you grok that in its fullness, you will also grok McThag.

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