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Old 6th August 2019, 05:37 AM   #1
Juniversal
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White male Privilege and Domestic Terrorism

At the conclusion of yet another series of mass shootings I've been pretty unnerved by society's unwillingness to actually address the glaring problem at the core of many of these recent politically motivated mass shootings. Namely a white supremacist ideology that seems to be highly influential and radicalizing to young white males.


Instead we want to blame violent video games, movies and mental illness. At what point do we blame the ideology and the pervasiveness of the extremely racist, misogynistic and violent content that come from the depths of 4Chan, 8Chan or just pure white nationalism i.e. StormFront, that creates a Frankenstein's monster of a white supremacist ideology? This tendency to view white males endlessly empathetically speaks to America's racial blind spot and the the ivory tower of whiteness. It's the "affluenza" phenomenon all over again.


When an Islamist commits an act of terror, America has had little hesitation in indicting the religion, the ideology and leveling scorn and hatred at the entire Muslim population (including banning travel from countries with large muslim populations). Mental illness is rarely, if ever considered (and in many, if not most cases, rightfully so).


At what point do we admit this ideology might actually play a bigger role than mental illness and have a national dialogue about it? The popularity of Mr. "There were fine people on both sides" and "lets blame violent videogames" leaves me with very little hope.
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Old 6th August 2019, 05:40 AM   #2
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And i know this thread could potentially be combined with the Stochastic Terrorism and Edgelord Humour thread but thought it could warrant it's own discussion at least temporarily.
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Old 6th August 2019, 07:45 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by Juniversal View Post
At what point do we admit this ideology might actually play a bigger role than mental illness and have a national dialogue about it?

At a time when 40% of the nation has this mental illness, i.e. white supremacism, it's too ambitious to imagine a national dialogue about it. It has to begin at a much smaller scale. Here, for instance.
And I think that the place to begin is with the question: Why do people believe in the old saying, "Everyone is the architect of his own fortune?"
It may seem to be a strange place to begin, but this ideology is at the root of the problem. It's the basic ideology of the USA, of the American Dream. This is how Google describes it:
Quote:
the ideal by which equality of opportunity is available to any American, allowing the highest aspirations and goals to be achieved.

What many young Americans experience today is that reality doesn't quite (or not at all) live up to their high aspirations, i.e. they themselves don't live up to them, and since they don't want to see themselves as mere losers (everybody loves a winner), they look for somebody else to blame: Life would have been so much better, they think, I would have been a success if it weren't for those ... Mexicans, for instance. I don't even have a girlfriend, and now I see those ******* Spics and their happy families, apparently enjoying life when I, who ought to entitled to do so, don't.
But this already implies the racism that was always prevalent in U.S. society: "We hold these Truths to be self-evident, that all Men are created equal," except, of course, that we know that some men (!) are more equal than others, the descendants of the European colonizers.
To a young white incel, this situation is intolerable: He is not only a failure in his own eyes because he couldn't live up to his own expectations of good grades in school, a good education, a pretty, devoted girlfriend (that's what women are there for, after all), and a good job. And now he doesn't even have the traditionally inferior kinds of people to look down on in his racist arrogance. So it's obvious to him what the only imaginable solution to the problem is: Send them back!!! (Or the even more radical solution that we saw in El Paso.)

Notice that it all starts with the inferiority complex that competitive society gives these young white boys: I am a loser, and I was supposed to be a success! This is also the reason why most mass shootings are murder suicides. They not only expect to die, they actually want to die as the failures they consider themselves to be, but they want to go down in what they see as a blaze of glory, killing as many as possible of the people that they consider to be the cause of their failure. In the Columbine shooting, it was still the jocks, the successful students at the high school, the competitors of the shooters, but nowadays they tend to focus on the people who don't belong here, the blacks, the Spics, the Chinks the foreigners.

American society no longer enables a large number of Americans to achieve the modicum of success and respect that they yearn for. The economy serves the purpose of making the 0.1% richer.

If you've ever wondered why people are ashamed of losing (for instance when being unemployed) when it actually isn't their own fault, I can recommend the book (online): Psychology of the Private Individual. It's not an easy read, but it's worthwhile.
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Old 6th August 2019, 09:17 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by dann View Post
American society no longer enables a large number of Americans to achieve the modicum of success and respect that they yearn for. The economy serves the purpose of making the 0.1% richer.
Yep (great post in general, by the way), and it's really dangerous that we're not talking about this more as a society. There's an epidemic of dissatisfaction and alienation going on in society right now, and lots of people out there are desperately clinging to whatever they can to feel some sense of purpose. With young white men in general there's a sense that they really should be better off, and if things aren't going well, then it must be someone's fault. And it's really easy to blame immigrants and feminism for your problems; after all, if things were better for people like you in the past, why not want to go back to that? What makes it even worse is that for many of them, they feel like society either completely ignores them (because they're white men and are "privileged" - way too many people misunderstand what that means and assume it's a term used to dismiss their problems) or actively works to keep them down at the expense of others. That's what leads to the serious anger so many have now. All it takes is stumbling across a few infographics on 4chan, or videos made by the "self-help" figures that pander to them specifically, like Stefan Molyneaux and Jordan Peterson. Then you have the simple, easy answer as to why you feel so bad about your life: it's because people are taking your opportunities. When someone feels desperate, it's easy to weaponize their despair if you use the right language.

Honestly, as a young white man, I've felt some of this myself; it's seeing these shootings can be really hard for me. I've had a lot of the same feelings, and the same sense of feeling powerlessness about it in the past. I even love guns. There was a point in time I even made attempts to check out various religions and self-help systems I came across, and I regularly posted on 4chan. Luckily, my empathy and critical thinking skills kept me from becoming some kind of hateful bigot or incel, and I was eventually able to cope by going to college and finding something to be passionate about. The only real solution I see for this is something similar on a larger scale. You need to be able to address it specifically and start telling young white men what they feel is valid, but they're blaming the wrong people, then doing something to help them feel a positive sense of purpose. I don't know exactly how to do that, and I don't know how coherent this post is, but I'm really tired of seeing people that could have easily been me being radicalized and committing violence.
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Old 6th August 2019, 09:22 AM   #5
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Experts have pointed out that the way "lone wolves" are radicalized on the internet is very similar to the tactics Al Qaeda used to recruit fighters.
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Old 6th August 2019, 01:05 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by The Great Zaganza View Post
Experts have pointed out that the way "lone wolves" are radicalized on the internet is very similar to the tactics Al Qaeda used to recruit fighters.
Yes.

Experts have even pointed to a route of radicalization that is often followed:

Fox News - Jordan Peterson/Ben Shapiro - Breitbart - Infowars - Stormfront/4chan and 8chan.

We know how the radicalization works. It's within our power to stop it. Will we?
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Old 6th August 2019, 01:16 PM   #7
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People start throwing in Peterson with white supremacist forums on 8 Chan and they wonder why people don't take their opinions seriously.
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Old 6th August 2019, 01:26 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by uke2se View Post
Yes.

Experts have even pointed to a route of radicalization that is often followed:

Fox News - Jordan Peterson/Ben Shapiro - Breitbart - Infowars - Stormfront/4chan and 8chan.

We know how the radicalization works. It's within our power to stop it. Will we?
Other then totally taking away freedom of speech, how do you stop it?
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Old 6th August 2019, 01:45 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by cullennz View Post
People start throwing in Peterson with white supremacist forums on 8 Chan and they wonder why people don't take their opinions seriously.
No one says that Peterson is the same as actual white supremacists or that he's alt-right, the claim is that he's often at the start of the pipeline that can lead people down the rabbit hole that eventually ends up there. Do you think he isn't? Because I've seen more than one study tying him to that world through things like youtube watches. Don't forget, he also regularly appears right wing media outlets like Prager U and has done videos with noted white supremacist/cult leader Stefan Molyneaux (coincidentally, another figure who presents his ideology as self-help).

And it's really not hard to see why he can lead people in that direction. He wrote a self-help book pretty much targeted at alienated and depressed young white men, and through it (along with his internet presence) cultivated a devoted, cult-like fanbase. He uses his platforms to advance his worldview, which (among other things) says that hierarchies are good, and that there's been a concerted effort by "posmodern neomarxists" to essentially keep things from his audience and destroy society. On top of that, he also has a propensity for saying some pretty misogynist things, like that it's impossible to have a reasonable discussion with women because you can't threaten violence or that women represent chaos, and he expresses a lot of anger in 12 Rules For Life.

And that's all beside his constant promoting of his own weird version of Christianity as a societal model everyone should follow because he doesn't think the concept of objective reality is useful or conducive to "life." The guy is a crackpot with philosophically incoherent ideas, and by presenting himself as a philosopher with the right outlook to help disaffected young men, he introduces them to a conservative, conspiratorial worldview and tells them it's the solution to their problems. It's really not hard to see how someone that's bought into Peterson's worldview could easily be lead to be believe in other right-wing ideologies.

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Old 6th August 2019, 02:42 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by ArchSas View Post
<...>

And it's really not hard to see why he can lead people in that direction. He wrote a self-help book pretty much targeted at alienated and depressed young white men, and through it (along with his internet presence) cultivated a devoted, cult-like fanbase. He uses his platforms to advance his worldview, which (among other things) says that hierarchies are good, and that there's been a concerted effort by "posmodern neomarxists" to essentially keep things from his audience and destroy society. On top of that, he also has a propensity for saying some pretty misogynist things, like that it's impossible to have a reasonable discussion with women because you can't threaten violence or that women represent chaos, and he expresses a lot of anger in 12 Rules For Life.

<...> .
Do you have a link for the above?

The closest I've seen to something like that was in the infamous 'So you're saying that ...' interview he did a while back where the interviewer did as admirable a job of straw-manning what Petersen had said only moments before as could be imagined. But I don't follow the guy too closely and I wouldn't say I'm a fan in general, so maybe he did say in as many words that you can't have a reasonable discussion because you can't threaten violence. Would be curious to see what the above claim is based on.
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Old 6th August 2019, 02:48 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by ArchSas View Post
No one says that Peterson is the same as actual white supremacists or that he's alt-right, the claim is that he's often at the start of the pipeline that can lead people down the rabbit hole that eventually ends up there. Do you think he isn't? Because I've seen more than one study tying him to that world through things like youtube watches. Don't forget, he also regularly appears right wing media outlets like Prager U and has done videos with noted white supremacist/cult leader Stefan Molyneaux (coincidentally, another figure who presents his ideology as self-help).

And it's really not hard to see why he can lead people in that direction. He wrote a self-help book pretty much targeted at alienated and depressed young white men, and through it (along with his internet presence) cultivated a devoted, cult-like fanbase. He uses his platforms to advance his worldview, which (among other things) says that hierarchies are good, and that there's been a concerted effort by "posmodern neomarxists" to essentially keep things from his audience and destroy society. On top of that, he also has a propensity for saying some pretty misogynist things, like that it's impossible to have a reasonable discussion with women because you can't threaten violence or that women represent chaos, and he expresses a lot of anger in 12 Rules For Life.

And that's all beside his constant promoting of his own weird version of Christianity as a societal model everyone should follow because he doesn't think the concept of objective reality is useful or conducive to "life." The guy is a crackpot with philosophically incoherent ideas, and by presenting himself as a philosopher with the right outlook to help disaffected young men, he introduces them to a conservative, conspiratorial worldview and tells them it's the solution to their problems. It's really not hard to see how someone that's bought into Peterson's worldview could easily be lead to be believe in other right-wing ideologies.
Got it.

Anyone who has the slightest thought that might be considered more right ring than left is bad.
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Old 6th August 2019, 03:15 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by cullennz View Post
Got it.

Anyone who has the slightest thought that might be considered more right ring than left is bad.

A marvellous contradiction in terms: First you claim that you got it, and then you present your strawman pretending that just paraphrased what ArchSas wrote.
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Old 6th August 2019, 03:24 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by dann View Post
A marvellous contradiction in terms: First you claim that you got it, and then you present your strawman pretending that just paraphrased what ArchSas wrote.
Not really

ArchSas wrote "other right wing ideologies"

Not "far right ideologies", or "alt right ideologies", which would have been a reasonable argument. (One I wouldn't agree with, but reasonable)
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Old 6th August 2019, 03:25 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by dudalb View Post
Other then totally taking away freedom of speech, how do you stop it?
You deplatform the named people and websites. Everyone else can go about their day enjoying freedom of speech.
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Old 6th August 2019, 03:27 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by dann View Post
A marvellous contradiction in terms: First you claim that you got it, and then you present your strawman pretending that just paraphrased what ArchSas wrote.
It's easier than thinking, I suppose.
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Old 6th August 2019, 03:57 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by Joe Random View Post
Do you have a link for the above?

The closest I've seen to something like that was in the infamous 'So you're saying that ...' interview he did a while back where the interviewer did as admirable a job of straw-manning what Petersen had said only moments before as could be imagined. But I don't follow the guy too closely and I wouldn't say I'm a fan in general, so maybe he did say in as many words that you can't have a reasonable discussion because you can't threaten violence. Would be curious to see what the above claim is based on.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dL3Hrwg3A3w

I also see it as another example of his weird relationship with anger, due to his belief that the only thing that makes "civil discussion" possible is an underlying threat of violence.
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Old 6th August 2019, 04:02 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by cullennz View Post
Not really

ArchSas wrote "other right wing ideologies"

Not "far right ideologies", or "alt right ideologies", which would have been a reasonable argument. (One I wouldn't agree with, but reasonable)
I specifically chose that phrase because I don't consider Peterson far right or alt-right, and I didn't want to give the impression that I did. "Other right wing ideologies" was just the easiest umbrella term I could think of, if you're really curious. Maybe I could have been more precise, but I think I got the general idea across. If that's what you want to build your strawman around, go ahead, I guess.

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Old 6th August 2019, 04:13 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by Juniversal View Post
And i know this thread could potentially be combined with the Stochastic Terrorism and Edgelord Humour thread but thought it could warrant it's own discussion at least temporarily.
I think the idea that white supremacist motivations are a recent trend among some mass killers in the U.S. is supported by the evidence.

But there's a risk of extending that label to all or most white mass killers simply cause they're white, not because they did it for some ideology they believe in. You see media and just random joes conflating them all the time.
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Old 6th August 2019, 04:14 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by ArchSas View Post
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dL3Hrwg3A3w

I also see it as another example of his weird relationship with anger, due to his belief that the only thing that makes "civil discussion" possible is an underlying threat of violence.

Interesting clip, and my take away from it seems to be different to yours though it still left a bad taste in my mouth. I don't see what he was saying as an example of misogyny, but (to me) an objectionable stance that force must at least be on the table as a general rule in interactions. He's not objecting to the fact that he can't have the threat against women as an option full stop, but rather he can't have the threat against women the way he can with a man. A couple of times I thought he was being specific to cases where civil discourse was already tossed aside, but he kept looping it back to just conversations in general.

Smacks too much of the 'an armed society is a polite society' for my tastes, but I don't (again, personally) see it as misogynistic. He wants to be able to throw down against either set of pluming, and its the throwing down part at all that I have a problem with.

At this point he's been in front of interviewers and audiences enough to where I don't think it can be written off to poorly chosen phraseology in the heat of the moment. Clip doesn't do anything to raise my opinion of him. Thanks for sharing.

Edit to add : there's an interesting tangential discussion to be had about violence in social interactions during our formative years. I've heard it opined that (speaking in a very broad sense) the stereotypical 'girl fight' is so much more violent than a typical 'two guys with egos meet and fight' is that males grow up with that constant possibility that things will get physical so they learn how to escalate arguments, whereas women don't. The claim is that guys have that specter of 'if I mouth off too much at this guy he might sock me' so not all arguments go to weapons hot right away because of risk assessment. Is it worth losing teeth over this or not? But women, never having been socialized that physical violence is a very possible outcome, can only go right away to 'fire for effect'.

I don't know if that is or isn't true, but I find it a very interesting concept worthy of discussion. Unfortunately JP, at least in the clip above, takes an incredibly simplistic and violence-laden approach that side steps the one interesting social point he might have made.

Last edited by Joe Random; 6th August 2019 at 04:22 PM. Reason: add a tangent
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Old 6th August 2019, 04:42 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by dann View Post
At a time when 40% of the nation has this mental illness, i.e. white supremacism, it's too ambitious to imagine a national dialogue about it. It has to begin at a much smaller scale. Here, for instance.
And I think that the place to begin is with the question: Why do people believe in the old saying, "Everyone is the architect of his own fortune?"
It may seem to be a strange place to begin, but this ideology is at the root of the problem. It's the basic ideology of the USA, of the American Dream. This is how Google describes it:



What many young Americans experience today is that reality doesn't quite (or not at all) live up to their high aspirations, i.e. they themselves don't live up to them, and since they don't want to see themselves as mere losers (everybody loves a winner), they look for somebody else to blame: Life would have been so much better, they think, I would have been a success if it weren't for those ... Mexicans, for instance. I don't even have a girlfriend, and now I see those ******* Spics and their happy families, apparently enjoying life when I, who ought to entitled to do so, don't.
But this already implies the racism that was always prevalent in U.S. society: "We hold these Truths to be self-evident, that all Men are created equal," except, of course, that we know that some men (!) are more equal than others, the descendants of the European colonizers.
To a young white incel, this situation is intolerable: He is not only a failure in his own eyes because he couldn't live up to his own expectations of good grades in school, a good education, a pretty, devoted girlfriend (that's what women are there for, after all), and a good job. And now he doesn't even have the traditionally inferior kinds of people to look down on in his racist arrogance. So it's obvious to him what the only imaginable solution to the problem is: Send them back!!! (Or the even more radical solution that we saw in El Paso.)

Notice that it all starts with the inferiority complex that competitive society gives these young white boys: I am a loser, and I was supposed to be a success! This is also the reason why most mass shootings are murder suicides. They not only expect to die, they actually want to die as the failures they consider themselves to be, but they want to go down in what they see as a blaze of glory, killing as many as possible of the people that they consider to be the cause of their failure. In the Columbine shooting, it was still the jocks, the successful students at the high school, the competitors of the shooters, but nowadays they tend to focus on the people who don't belong here, the blacks, the Spics, the Chinks the foreigners.

American society no longer enables a large number of Americans to achieve the modicum of success and respect that they yearn for. The economy serves the purpose of making the 0.1% richer.

If you've ever wondered why people are ashamed of losing (for instance when being unemployed) when it actually isn't their own fault, I can recommend the book (online): Psychology of the Private Individual. It's not an easy read, but it's worthwhile.
Good post. Seems many young men are fed the longstanding white supremacist narrative/propaganda that their genetics and whiteness means they are owed the world, and minorities are a degrading force while "whiteness" in and of itself is an empowering force. So much so that they're willing to commit mass murder to make some sort of statement about their place in society. The growing population of self-identified incels may also naturally branch off from the hubris that larger society places on whiteness and maleness.
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Old 6th August 2019, 05:32 PM   #21
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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-dxSLld8PfA

This video speaks to the tone deafness that revolves around this issue. To hear these politicians and pundits passionately deride videogames, blame them for these shootings and calling for reform of the videogame industry is enraging.

Thank goodness we didn't have the same level of tone deafness and inaction when it came to Islamic terrorism. I can understand to an extent acknowledging the influence of a culture that celebrates violence in creating a more trigger happy populace but that's independent of the consumption of violent media in and of itself.


ETA: We've created a culture that treats guns as a fashion accessory and not weapons of destruction, a culture that believe more guns in more peoples hands with little to no regulation is the solution to gun violence, a culture that fetishizes murder and loves masturbatory fantasies of killing home invaders, favors vigilante justice over gun control and literally chose the preciousness of their guns over the preciousness of human life (in the case of the national dialogue on gun control revolving around Parkland)...but yea, video games are to blame.
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Old 6th August 2019, 07:06 PM   #22
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And that less tangible culture is the biggest threat, imo.
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Old 7th August 2019, 02:27 AM   #23
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Originally Posted by cullennz View Post
People start throwing in Peterson with white supremacist forums on 8 Chan and they wonder why people don't take their opinions seriously.
Sigh. Did you notice the stages in uke2se's post? Lobster boy Peterson preaches the same misogynist nonsense that the alt-right laps up. His drivel, mixing misogyny and male entitlement, climate change denial and his obsession with red meat diet, appeals to the is tailor made for dumber young conservative men.

He, along with Harris, Shapiro and a few others, make up the entirely self-proclaimed "Intellectual Dark Web"; a collection of media advocating right-wing positions with enough patina of intellectualism to be superficially appealing to the less intelligent.
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Old 7th August 2019, 02:28 AM   #24
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Originally Posted by dudalb View Post
Other then totally taking away freedom of speech, how do you stop it?
Which is more important "freedom of speech" or peoples lives and the survival of human society?
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Old 7th August 2019, 02:32 AM   #25
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Originally Posted by cullennz View Post
Got it.

Anyone who has the slightest thought that might be considered more right ring than left is bad.

You're making stuff up. Again.
Look, just because you've fallen for Peterson's nonsense doesn't mean others cannot see though him.
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Old 7th August 2019, 02:46 AM   #26
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Originally Posted by dudalb View Post
Other then totally taking away freedom of speech, how do you stop it?

There was actually a fantastic episode of Law and Order on that

Well, "spoiler" obviously but the gist of the episode was that a girl was killed because she started dating a black guy and her ex-boyfriend was a white supremacist teen.

They charged both him and the preacher who gave constant hate speeches - despite him never really telling the kid to do something or barely even knowing who he was.

Here's Jack's closing monologue:

Quote:
Of course Mr. Willis never said, "Kill Christina Osborne."
Adolph Hitler never said, "Kill this Jew or that Jew."
But there's no doubting his intent, nor the result of what he did say.

The defense paraphrased Supreme Court Justices Holmes and Brandeis.
I think you should hear what they actually wrote in 1927.

"No danger flowing from speech "can be deemed clear and present, unless the incidence of the evil apprehended is so imminent that it may befall before there is opportunity for full discussion.
If there be time to expose the evil by the processes of education."

When we talk about free speech, we mean the exchange of ideas, dialogue, full discussion. Where was the opportunity for discussion in Mr. Willis' world?

He handpicked unstable young people. He told them to associate only with those who thought the way they did. And then he filled their heads with suspicion, paranoia, hate and violence.

Prepare for war.
Destroy traitors.
Violence is necessary.
Hate Jews, African-Americans, gay people.
Hate is your friend.
Embrace it.

And he expects us to believe that he didn't intend them to be violent? That he couldn't foresee somebody might get killed? Who's he kidding? The First Amendment protects words that persuade.
It doesn't protect words that incite.
That's what Mr. Willis did.
That's why it's called murder.
The point here is that I do consider that a very valid form of strategy to attack the issue is to attack the marketing strategy.

If one could prove a correlation of how the white supremacists groups target individuals that are likely to act violently then that gives you a reasonable cause and effect correlation without going into freedom of speech.
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Old 7th August 2019, 02:59 AM   #27
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Originally Posted by dudalb View Post
Other then totally taking away freedom of speech, how do you stop it?
We just have to accept it as a part of the first amendment like mass shootings and terrorism are a part of the second.
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Old 7th August 2019, 03:29 AM   #28
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Originally Posted by catsmate View Post

You're making stuff up. Again.
Look, just because you've fallen for Peterson's nonsense doesn't mean others cannot see though him.
I haven't fallen for anything

I just don't think he is a "gateway drug" to the far right, as is being implied
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Old 7th August 2019, 04:35 AM   #29
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Originally Posted by GrandMasterFox View Post
Law and Order is authoritarian, regressive trash. That show may as well be a manifesto for cop worshiping. It regularly shows civil rights as obstacles that our hero police and prosecutors need to defeat in order to keep the public safe.

it should go without saying that any take Law and Order has on incitement and 1A is probably a terrible one and totally unmoored from legal reality.
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Old 7th August 2019, 06:19 AM   #30
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Originally Posted by SuburbanTurkey View Post
Law and Order is authoritarian, regressive trash. That show may as well be a manifesto for cop worshiping. It regularly shows civil rights as obstacles that our hero police and prosecutors need to defeat in order to keep the public safe.

it should go without saying that any take Law and Order has on incitement and 1A is probably a terrible one and totally unmoored from legal reality.
I stick with 24 to keep myself grounded in reality.
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Old 7th August 2019, 06:22 AM   #31
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Originally Posted by The Great Zaganza View Post
I stick with 24 to keep myself grounded in reality.
I've been told the most realistic cop show was Reno 911.
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Old 7th August 2019, 07:08 AM   #32
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Originally Posted by ArchSas View Post
What makes it even worse is that for many of them, they feel like society either completely ignores them (because they're white men and are "privileged" - way too many people misunderstand what that means and assume it's a term used to dismiss their problems) or actively works to keep them down at the expense of others. That's what leads to the serious anger so many have now. All it takes is stumbling across a few infographics on 4chan, or videos made by the "self-help" figures that pander to them specifically, like Stefan Molyneaux and Jordan Peterson. Then you have the simple, easy answer as to why you feel so bad about your life: it's because people are taking your opportunities. When someone feels desperate, it's easy to weaponize their despair if you use the right language.

The irony is that in Trump they've found a guy who is as dumb as he's privileged and yet has the same persecution delusion as the disgruntled young white men. Whenever somebody doesn't grovel to him or maybe even dares to criticize him, it must be due to nothing but their unwillingness to recognize he is (very stable) genius. His opponents must be biased against him, and the weirdest part is that his fans seem to recognize that in him and even empathize with him for that very reason. They don't see the spoiled whiney baby that is easily recognizable to those of us who didn't drink the Trump kool-aid. Instead they see him as our guy because he hands them an easily recognizable scapegoat.

Quote:
Honestly, as a young white man, I've felt some of this myself; it's seeing these shootings can be really hard for me. I've had a lot of the same feelings, and the same sense of feeling powerlessness about it in the past. I even love guns. There was a point in time I even made attempts to check out various religions and self-help systems I came across, and I regularly posted on 4chan. Luckily, my empathy and critical thinking skills kept me from becoming some kind of hateful bigot or incel, and I was eventually able to cope by going to college and finding something to be passionate about. The only real solution I see for this is something similar on a larger scale. You need to be able to address it specifically and start telling young white men what they feel is valid, but they're blaming the wrong people, then doing something to help them feel a positive sense of purpose. I don't know exactly how to do that, and I don't know how coherent this post is, but I'm really tired of seeing people that could have easily been me being radicalized and committing violence.

Bernie and the Squad seem to understand what motivates these people, and to some extent they also seem to be able to reach them and to talk the kind of language that they can understand, but to the alt-right leaders that makes them so much more the enemy. It wouldn't surprise me at all if one of them becomes the next target. The Fox-&-Trump smear campaign has been going on for quite some time already.
(By the way, you can find very similar attitudes in white guys who are not at all young. A friend of mine in his early sixties who used to be a very sensible guy but whose life didn't quite turned out the way he had hoped for recently started sympathizing with this new identitarian, anti-Muslim party: 'Hard Line'.) It surprised me that as many as almost 2% of the Danes do, too, according to the latest election.
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Old 7th August 2019, 07:10 AM   #33
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Originally Posted by cullennz View Post
I haven't fallen for anything

I just don't think he is a "gateway drug" to the far right, as is being implied

From a far-right perspective, he's just another conservative ...
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"The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness. The demand to give up the illusion about its condition is the demand to give up a condition which needs illusions." K. Marx
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Old 7th August 2019, 08:01 AM   #34
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Originally Posted by ArchSas View Post
Honestly, as a young white man, I've felt some of this myself; it's seeing these shootings can be really hard for me. I've had a lot of the same feelings, and the same sense of feeling powerlessness about it in the past. I even love guns. There was a point in time I even made attempts to check out various religions and self-help systems I came across, and I regularly posted on 4chan. Luckily, my empathy and critical thinking skills kept me from becoming some kind of hateful bigot or incel, and I was eventually able to cope by going to college and finding something to be passionate about. The only real solution I see for this is something similar on a larger scale. You need to be able to address it specifically and start telling young white men what they feel is valid, but they're blaming the wrong people, then doing something to help them feel a positive sense of purpose. I don't know exactly how to do that, and I don't know how coherent this post is, but I'm really tired of seeing people that could have easily been me being radicalized and committing violence.
I think it is pretty common for young people, especially teenage boys, to feel some of what you describe, in the general sense. I think back to my tumultuous high school years and the petty annoyances that I conflated into the most grievous affronts to dignity and a sense of injustice. Like many people, my teenage years were spent hungrily experimenting with various ideologies, including political, religious, cultural, whatever. A little bit of philosophical and intellectual flailing is just the cost of maturing into an adult.

What these extremist groups do is target these vulnerable and tumultuous minds and exacerbate the most negative elements of them. I think the incel extremists are probably the best example. It's pretty common for young men to struggle with romance and become frustrated, often bemoaning the perceived injustices of such struggle. Most transition out of this juvenile wallowing as they gain more experience and understanding of relationships, dating, sex, whatever. Incels seem to be in a pattern of arrested development, dealing with these struggles by doubling down on behavior and thinking that only ensures that they will never succeed, preventing any maturing from occurring. What should only be a temporary period of difficulty for a young man is prolonged into an unbearable, unending struggle that can only lead to intense vitriol, self-hate, and a desire to lash out.

I worry about these groups that inflame and perpetuate what ought to be transitional characteristics well into adulthood, be it incels, misogynists, racists, or other extremist and simplistic ideologies.

Put more succinctly, I think we are seeing normal teen angst cultivated and weaponized into something much more severe.
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Old 7th August 2019, 09:38 AM   #35
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Originally Posted by SuburbanTurkey View Post

Put more succinctly, I think we are seeing normal teen angst cultivated and weaponized into something much more severe.
That's a very good way of putting it, and I think social media plays a huge role in why this is happening. Probably even what's driving some of the tendencies in older people that Dann mentioned, too. Now it's incredibly easy for your beliefs and insecurities to be reinforced by online communities, and to eventually only interact with content that reflects your worldview. Instead of moving on while growing, gaining experience, and interacting with the world, a young person now can easily get all the negative reinforcement they want and essentially have their worst beliefs become their identity.

Of course, this was obviously a problem in the past, too, but it seems way easier to access these radical views now. Sometimes you don't even really need to try, the communities are so active, it'll just come up whether you like it or not. To keep using incels as an example, I've seen countless threads on 4chan's message board from people asking innocuous questions about talking to women, getting over shyness, and other things most people have trouble with at some point; among the actual advice, there are always incels there to give the simple advice (and usually some accompanying proof) that society will never work for you, women are evil, and it's not worth trying. Or, to shift examples slightly, the well-documented problem youtube has (although it used to be much, much worse), of recommending people far-right videos seemingly out of nowhere.
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Old 7th August 2019, 10:13 AM   #36
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Originally Posted by SuburbanTurkey View Post
I think it is pretty common for young people, especially teenage boys, to feel some of what you describe, in the general sense. I think back to my tumultuous high school years and the petty annoyances that I conflated into the most grievous affronts to dignity and a sense of injustice. Like many people, my teenage years were spent hungrily experimenting with various ideologies, including political, religious, cultural, whatever. A little bit of philosophical and intellectual flailing is just the cost of maturing into an adult.

What these extremist groups do is target these vulnerable and tumultuous minds and exacerbate the most negative elements of them. I think the incel extremists are probably the best example. It's pretty common for young men to struggle with romance and become frustrated, often bemoaning the perceived injustices of such struggle. Most transition out of this juvenile wallowing as they gain more experience and understanding of relationships, dating, sex, whatever. Incels seem to be in a pattern of arrested development, dealing with these struggles by doubling down on behavior and thinking that only ensures that they will never succeed, preventing any maturing from occurring. What should only be a temporary period of difficulty for a young man is prolonged into an unbearable, unending struggle that can only lead to intense vitriol, self-hate, and a desire to lash out.

I worry about these groups that inflame and perpetuate what ought to be transitional characteristics well into adulthood, be it incels, misogynists, racists, or other extremist and simplistic ideologies.

Put more succinctly, I think we are seeing normal teen angst cultivated and weaponized into something much more severe.
Agreed. Well said... This is the national dialogue we need to be having instead of blaming games or even mental illness (unless social awkwardness is suddenly a mental illness).

I certainly believe the Incel subculture is creating delusions of hopelessness and worthlessness that could potentially be overcome with counseling and increased social interaction in most individuals but these young men are convinced they are social pariahs that have no hope of ever having romantic success and become extremely bitter and spiteful towards women and society. It's a literal pity party in the form of a subculture.
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Old 7th August 2019, 10:36 AM   #37
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Originally Posted by Juniversal View Post
Agreed. Well said... This is the national dialogue we need to be having instead of blaming games or even mental illness (unless social awkwardness is suddenly a mental illness).

I certainly believe the Incel subculture is creating delusions of hopelessness and worthlessness that could potentially be overcome with counseling and increased social interaction in most individuals but these young men are convinced they are social pariahs that have no hope of ever having romantic success and become extremely bitter and spiteful towards women and society. It's a literal pity party in the form of a subculture.
I don't see how any "national dialogue" about mass murder domestic terrorism could put aside mental illness. I don't see how it could not be an essential element of the topic.

The mass shooter who is identified as white supremacist has got to fall within the diagnosis of mental illness. These are often suicide missions so you have a person who expects to die and they can prevent their own death by stopping their own plan. But they go ahead with it anyway and so that suggests mental illness. Even if they are caught and spend life in prison they know that it will be without any existing friends and family - forever.

It's as if they have already abandoned all friends and family. As if they are already dead. How can they love anyone in this world and then go and do this? You would be ruining anything good in your world by suddenly killing a bunch of people.

How can a mentally healthy person make this decision?
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Old 7th August 2019, 10:36 AM   #38
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Originally Posted by ArchSas View Post
That's a very good way of putting it, and I think social media plays a huge role in why this is happening. Probably even what's driving some of the tendencies in older people that Dann mentioned, too. Now it's incredibly easy for your beliefs and insecurities to be reinforced by online communities, and to eventually only interact with content that reflects your worldview. Instead of moving on while growing, gaining experience, and interacting with the world, a young person now can easily get all the negative reinforcement they want and essentially have their worst beliefs become their identity.

Big social media platforms, like the Internet in general, was supposed to be the Great Equalizer, a venue for greater and deeper and more widely varied communication than had ever been possible before them. A way for people to experience an unprecedented variety of other cultures and experiences and worldviews. The reality, however, is that they were turned into a mechanism for creating highly insular and self-reinforcing echo chambers, which are extremely difficult to penetrate and counteract. Social media has gone from a method of communication to a tool of indoctrination. The big social media corporations hosting these platforms are well aware of this trend, and actively encourage it, because it drives activities which make them money.

Quote:
Or, to shift examples slightly, the well-documented problem youtube has (although it used to be much, much worse), of recommending people far-right videos seemingly out of nowhere.

Controversy drives views, which drive comments, which increases views, and so on in a self-reinforcing pattern, which advertisers like because it keeps eyes on their products. And because far-right pundits generate view quickly and in high volume, they get pushed to the top of the recommendations lists.
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Old 7th August 2019, 11:19 AM   #39
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Originally Posted by William Parcher View Post
I don't see how any "national dialogue" about mass murder domestic terrorism could put aside mental illness. I don't see how it could not be an essential element of the topic.

The mass shooter who is identified as white supremacist has got to fall within the diagnosis of mental illness. These are often suicide missions so you have a person who expects to die and they can prevent their own death by stopping their own plan. But they go ahead with it anyway and so that suggests mental illness. Even if they are caught and spend life in prison they know that it will be without any existing friends and family - forever.

It's as if they have already abandoned all friends and family. As if they are already dead. How can they love anyone in this world and then go and do this? You would be ruining anything good in your world by suddenly killing a bunch of people.

How can a mentally healthy person make this decision?
Soldiers make that decision. If these people truly believe they are fighting in the best interests of their country or family, then they can justify dying.

It isn't mental illness, it's indoctrination and radicalisation that's the problem.
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Old 7th August 2019, 11:25 AM   #40
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Originally Posted by ThatGuy11200 View Post
Soldiers make that decision. If these people truly believe they are fighting in the best interests of their country or family, then they can justify dying.

It isn't mental illness, it's indoctrination and radicalisation that's the problem.
I'm going to call that your opinion. My opinion is that it is mental illness. It may sometimes (or often) exist before indoctrination and radicalization.
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