urocyon: Grey fox crossing a stream (Default)
The last post is actually a pretty good illustration of why I am much more inclined to support the Make It Better Project, than It Gets Better. (Problems with Dan Savage aside.)

The major reason things have gotten better for me is that I am no longer legally required to spend many hours a day around people who behave that way. Seriously. As an adult who is unable to work ATM, I can mostly just avoid the adult jerks who aren't even bothering to be more subtle in harassing other people. Not to mention having worked hard to claw back some self-respect and dignity over the years, so more of what I do encounter can roll off my back.

Making our society easier to live in? I can get right behind that idea, daunting as the prospect may seem. Small steps can help people regain some dignity, if nothing else. Waiting for things to magically improve for yourself, never mind everyone else who's getting treated like crap? Not so much.

ETA: I also get tired of people getting blamed when they end up undereducated (and do I keep blaming myself for it), thanks to PTSD and no reasonable expectation that the kind of treatment they get will improve. When people have managed to survive, but would rather gouge their eyeballs out with a rusty potato peeler than voluntarily deal with the same systemic problems again--whether the harassment is based on sexuality, gender, race, disability, whatever else, or whatever combinations--that kinda puts a crimp in the whole "magically getting better" thing.

Yeah, the "unable to work" bit reminded me of this; undereducation has not been helpful. Things may be a bit different at the university level, but they're still | not | good (and Virginia Tech is not somehow anomalous, though I was getting stalked on campus at around the same time the shameful Brzonkala mess was happening). See also Hate Crimes on Campus and Stop The Hate.

And that's just one problem I have with propping up the status quo.
urocyon: Grey fox crossing a stream (Default)
I just saw an excellent post from [personal profile] amadi (from Friday), which I'm reproducing here. I'm too low on spoons ATM to turn out something on the same theme myself, but this is important stuff:

If you:
  • Find that I've just quoted someone you know of to be a known repeat offender abuser/bully without noting that the person is problematic

  • Find that I'm engaging with such a person, perhaps without knowledge of their history

  • Note that I have invited someone of this sort into a larger conversation in some way

please let me know. While I am, I think, aware of the three most prominent trouble-causing people in the corner of the social justice blogosphere I hang around in at the moment, obviously things have occurred and will occur outside of my knowledge. Come to me, talk with me, let me know. Help me to help keep us all safer. In turn, I will, with respect and with only that goal in mind, do likewise for you.

Note: Feel free to duplicate this post or use it as a jumping off point for your own statement on this matter. No attribution required, even if you copy completely. This isn't about me, this is about us as a community.

I am aware of several bullies, particularly in the autistic blogosphere, who have targeted people I know. It has bothered me that elsewhere in social justice circles, if I haven't seen the nasty behavior, I don't know who is doing the bullying and harassment. And, frankly, to conserve my Sanity Watchers Points, I have purposely been staying away from some places this is a more common phenomenon. Which is frustrating, in itself.

And some of us who already have too much experience dealing with this kind of crap, also have trouble talking about it openly (thanks to PTSD, concerns about dogpiling, getting the tired old "you're pointing out a problem, so you must be the problem" crap, etc.) when we're getting targeted specifically because the bullies know we're vulnerable and think they can get away with replicating abusive power dynamics on our heads: trying to build themselves up by tearing other people down. Kind of a difficult situation, all around. And I do not want to contribute to it.

People who behave nastily do not need any further encouragement, which includes (even unwitting) validation that the way they're treating other people is OK. So, please let me know if you see me engaging in any way with a bully. Please. And I will try to do the same.

September 2011

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