How is this guy popular?


Did you know the way to deal with a man? Debate is only a prelude to punching his lights out.

I know how to stand up to a man who’s unfairly trespassing against me, and the reason I know that is because the parameters for my resistance are quite well-defined … We talk, we argue, we push and then it becomes physical. Right?

You see, if that’s how an argument is supposed to reasonably progress, then it becomes problematic to argue with a woman, because you know that eventually, according to the rules, rational dissent must culminate in socking her in the jaw, and that’s not nice to do to a woman. Perfectly OK to do that to a man, of course.

In case you’re wondering who would make such a ludicrous argument, it’s from Jordan Peterson, clinical psychologist, darling of the alt-right, and Canadian. I’ve never been in such a situation, except for that time in 7th grade when I was beat up for my lunch money, and even then, I didn’t get to do any punching because I was on my back with the wind knocked out of me.

I don’t know, man, that’s such an un-Canadian attitude Peterson has got, they might have to revoke his citizenship.


Speaking of horrible people, you might want to read this post about Joshie Berger, formerly a popular participant at the Amazing Meeting, loud skeptic, and apparently an acolyte of Peterson. It seems his way of dealing with his girlfriend was to smash her face. If that has already ruined your breakfast, here’s another problem person: DJ Grothe. Grothe didn’t punch anyone, fortunately, but in his role as the TAM organizer at the time, he reportedly silenced people who complained about Berger’s general behavior. Because, I guess, that was his job, to keep everything running smoothly for abusers.

Fuck it. I’m going to Minneapolis today, to hang out with good people and get off the internet for a while.

Comments

  1. says

    I clicked through and left a comment on the post you linked here.

    Peterson is still at UT because he’s a brilliant lecturer in his field. His Maps of Meaning class is on line in its entirety. I recommend it without reservation.

    He’s actually saying the opposite of what he’s accused of. It’s forbidden to hit a woman so you have to just keep talking. Everyone is invited to do the same with him. Argue back. He’s talked a lot about this subject and it’s fairly obvious to me he’s a scientist and is open to changing his mind. Imagine that.

    Having said that he occasionally says things that makes me want to punch him in the mouth. Sometimes he just goes off the rails. But I’m a fan and I plan to keep arguing with him when I think he’s wrong.

  2. says

    I’m going to Minneapolis for a couple of things: #1: Greg Gbur, aka DrSkySkull, is passing through, so we’re meeting for lunch. #2: were mired in house renovations, & we have to hit up some of the big box stores for…stuff. My wife thinks we need a classy new mailbox to match our color scheme, for instance.

  3. Petal to the Medal says

    Gee, I talk & argue with other men all the time, but it has been at least 50 years since one of those arguments came to blows. What am I doing wrong?

  4. Rich Woods says

    What am I doing wrong?

    Obviously you’re not a Real Man™.

    Fortunately you’re not alone in this.

  5. zenlike says

    Also from the video:
    “You know if you’re talking to a man who wouldn’t fight with you under any circumstances whatsoever, then you’re talking to someone to whom you have absolutely no respect.”

    Toxic masculinity turned up to 11.

    Also, as pointed out by Shiv, assaulting a guy if you are unable to win the debate is assault, and thus is ALSO forbidden. His singling out women, and by extension his entire train of thought, doesn’t make any sense, how much the fanboy/girl above tries to pretend otherwise.

  6. ck, the Irate Lump says

    Sadly, Canada has plenty of asshole idiots. There’s basically the whole of “Rebel Media”, including such luminaries like Lauren OMG White Genocide Southern, Ezra Levant, and Gavin McInnes to name just a few.

    … and to think I keep hearing that our hate speech laws are making it illegal to be a conservative, yet these assholes are allowed to continue to roam and spread their ideas. Who’ve guessed that this particular widely advertised panic is actually groundless?

  7. says

    I haven’t seen many videos of Peterson, or read anything he’s written, but what I’ve seen has just been…uninteresting. I haven’t heard him say anything I haven’t heard a dozen times before. It’s not even that I disagree with everything, it’s that he adds nothing to his statements – no novel interpretations, no new data, and certainly no suggestions for problem solving. I guess he could be the originator of some of this stuff, but that doesn’t change the fact that I heard it from other sources first and he just looks boring to me now..

  8. numerobis says

    “How is this guy popular?” — more than 40% of US voters voted for Trump and you wonder why a better-spoken misogynist is popular?

  9. damien75 says

    “the parameters for my resistance are quite well-defined”

    What the hell does it mean ?

    Seriously, “the parameters for my resistance” ? If anybody cares to translate that for me, I’ll be grateful.

  10. jrkrideau says

    @ 11 ck, the Irate Lump
    IANAL but I don’t think Peterson’s offensive crap is covered under the relevant section(s?) of the Criminal Code of Canada.

    I don’t know if Ezra has ever been charged but I am sure he’s come close more than once. Plus he has lost a good number of legal cases and issued a few apologies and he is or was a lawyer.

  11. jrkrideau says

    @ 17 chigau
    The_Beaverton
    is a satire site
    I suppose that next you are going to say that “Due South” was not a documentary series!

  12. chigau (違う) says

    jrkrideau #18
    Due South, in all its manifestations, was the finest TV series, evaaaaar!
    Thank you kindly for the reminder.

  13. methuseus says

    Correct me if i’m wrong, but isn’t the whole point of society in general so we don’t have to punch people in the face when we don’t agree? I know it’s not always panned out that way, and wars have happened, but that’s sort of what I got from any sociology class, and even just common sense thinking.

  14. trevort says

    And yet, on 19th Sep, you wrote (about ‘people’ you disagree with):
    “I approve of Nazi-punching. I know, it’s violent action, but when you’re dealing with people advocating for genocide, a little ramping up of the response is appropriate and necessary.”.

  15. ck, the Irate Lump says

    trevort wrote:

    And yet, on 19th Sep, you wrote (about ‘people’ you disagree with):

    Uh, no. Nazis are not merely ‘people’ [they] disagree with. They’re goddamn Nazis. Don’t be a Nazi apologist by pretending that the two categories are the same.

  16. Saad says

    trevort, #21

    The presence of Nazis and nazism is a threat to public safety.

    Matters of disagreement are things like how to provide clean water or allocate resources, etc. Harming minorities isn’t a matter of disagreement, except to people like you.

  17. Siobhan says

    By far the biggest damage done to the discourse was framing genocide as a mere “opinion” on par with liking pistachio ice cream.

    If genocide is even plausibly moral for you, you are the radical.

  18. says

    The_Beaverton
    is a satire site

    That’s what you say.
    Have you tried lately telling The Onion and White House Communication apart?

    Tabby Lavalamp

    Holy crap, the hand-wringing over punching Nazis never ends, does it?

    If it did, people would get the chance to discuss Nazis killing people, Nazis shooting at people, Nazis trying to blow up people…

  19. Saad says

    Nazis: Let’s threaten, intimidate, terrorize, harm, kill, and exterminate these groups of people.

    People like trevort: This is a valid topic to discuss. Add it to the agenda.

  20. blf says

    Have you tried lately telling The Onion and White House Communication apart?

    Recent one-of-the-two, ‘What Were We Talking About Again?’ Says Trump 15 Seconds Into Phone Call To Family Of Fallen Soldier.

    And The Onion in the age of Trump: ‘What we do becomes essential when its targets are this clownish’ (August-2017; Grauniad edits in {curly braces}; my added emboldening):

    In a ‘farcical’ world blighted by fake news, the longtime satirical publication has become even more necessary, its managing editor says
    […]
    One of the [Onion’s] founding editors, Scott Dikkers, expressed his frustration with the confusion between fake news and satire when he spoke to university students in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, earlier this year.

    “A lot of people now think satire and fake news are the same thing,” Dikkers said in February.

    “It’s satire. It’s totally different from fake news, and it bothers me when those fake news organisations are basically out there printing lies or propaganda {and} label themselves satire.”

    The key here is deception. Technically the Onion produces fake news but it’s for laughs — not to intentionally deceive readers, or to promote misinformation for ideological reasons, or to generate advertising revenue.

    When a fake news site based in Russia sends out a story like “WikiLeaks confirms Hillary sold weapons to Isis{…} Then drops another bombshell”, they are doing it to deliberately deceive — and they’re counting on the fact that many will see the headline and scroll past it before the lack of credibility registers.

    The managing editor of the Onion, Marnie Shure, says that if an Onion article is taken as fact, then it has failed.

    “The thing I like to emphasise is this: we work far too hard crafting our jokes for them to be taken as fact” […]

  21. Holms says

    Did you know the way to deal with a man? Debate is only a prelude to punching his lights out.

    I know how to stand up to a man who’s unfairly trespassing against me, and the reason I know that is because the parameters for my resistance are quite well-defined … We talk, we argue, we push and then it becomes physical. Right?

    […]
    In case you’re wondering who would make such a ludicrous argument, …

    Huh.

    I approve of Nazi-punching. I know, it’s violent action, but when you’re dealing with people advocating for genocide, a little ramping up of the response is appropriate and necessary.
    […]
    Punching Nazis is an unpleasant, necessary action, …

    Huh.

    Disagreement with someone should not progress to punching, but punch nazis on sight. There’s a word for this, and it ain’t ‘consistent’.

  22. says

    Disagreement with someone should not progress to punching, but punch nazis on sight. There’s a word for this, and it ain’t ‘consistent’.

    There’s a word for people who conflate “advocating for genocide” with “disagreement”. Actually, several. Collaborator, sympathizer, Quisling, Vichy, take your pick.

    Gosh, it must be nice to not actually be any of the people under direct threat by Nazis. To people like Holms, whether or not to round up and execute people of color, queer people, and disabled people is an issue for due consideration and dispassionate debate over a nice snifter of brandy.

  23. says

    @zenlike 10
    I’m seeing the same pattern too. The whole thing is an attempt at upholding physical force as a response to non-physical social challenge. The illegality is conveniently ignored.

    “We talk, we argue, we push and then it becomes physical. Right?”
    Jordan Peterson becomes physical in response to a social challenge. They are straight up admitting it. They need it.

    And it’s all over the place. From Trump thinking fondly of violence towards protestors to the violence-laden paranoia of Alex Jones. Motivated reasoning and and social dominance signalling. (“Virtue signalling” is ultimately projection and insult). Much mockery and reputation attention is needed.

  24. Saad says

    There’s one thing I don’t like about the “punch Nazi” thing. It conveys a serious topic and call to action in a simplistic and comical way.

    The full “punch Nazi” position for me is:

    When Nazis appear in a community and start doing Nazi things, it is the duty of the public to bring their Nazi activities to a halt as quickly as possible by using the least violent method. It is also very important to not act in a manner around Nazism that makes Nazism look like a valid public/political view. Sometimes this involves shouting someone down or pushing them out of the public space they’re terrorizing. Sometimes it’s punching (as in the case of the famous Spencer video).

  25. Siobhan says

    @28 Holms

    The difference is that the “trespass” Peterson claims to suffer is the existence of trans people and/or uppity women, while the trespass Nazi’s victims suffer is violence and oppression.

    Colour me surprised that you’d find him sympathetic.

  26. says

    When Nazis appear in a community and start doing Nazi things, it is the duty of the public to bring their Nazi activities to a halt as quickly as possible by using the least violent method. It is also very important to not act in a manner around Nazism that makes Nazism look like a valid public/political view. Sometimes this involves shouting someone down or pushing them out of the public space they’re terrorizing. Sometimes it’s punching (as in the case of the famous Spencer video).

    Unfortunately, no one can match their supersecret authentically military high-level tactical planning.

  27. says

    @Saad
    I like your position. An emphasis on minimizing violence when socially confronting bigots would get better results than “punch nazies” as a meme. It felt sloppy to me because the Nazi American in question mostly sees someone who likes the idea of them getting punched in many of the ones I’ve encountered. The humor needs to be smarter than that.
    Nazi Americans need to know that a physical attack is expected. Ultimately that is the only way bigots like Nazies can get rid of social opposition to their bigotry. Good social instinct, bad social response I wonder if “punching” is worth avoiding for a while in terms of new memes?

  28. Holms says

    #22 ck
    Uh, no. Nazis are not merely “‘people’ [they] disagree with”. They’re goddamn Nazis.

    Yes they are. Literally, they are 1) people 2) with whom I disagree.

    Don’t be a Nazi apologist by pretending that the two categories are the same.

    So by disagreeing with the ‘punch nazis on sight’ stance, I am now a nazi apologist, even though I oppose their politics in every way. Holy well poisoning, Batman!
    _______________________________

    #23 Saad
    The presence of Nazis and nazism is a threat to public safety.

    Same with anti-abortion campaigners. Same with anti-environment climate change deniers. (etc etc) Better assault them!

    Harming minorities isn’t a matter of disagreement, except to people like you.

    As before, it literally is an area of disagreement, for me and for you, because we both disagree with it. Strong, vehement rejection is disagreement.
    _______________________________

    #24 Tabby
    Holy crap, the hand-wringing over assault never ends, does it?

    fixt
    _______________________________

    #25 Siobhan
    By far the biggest damage done to the discourse was framing genocide as a mere “opinion” on par with liking pistachio ice cream.

    Could you point to an example of this on this forum?

    If genocide is even plausibly moral for you, you are the radical.

    You are conflating, probably deliberately, the ‘don’t assault people, even nazis’ stance with ‘considering nazism to be potentially morally defensible.’ This is not only incorrect, but also incredibly lazy thinking, and possibly a deliberate lie.
    _______________________________

    #27 Saad
    Nazis: Let’s threaten, intimidate, terrorize, harm, kill, and exterminate these groups of people.

    People like trevort: This is a valid topic to discuss. Add it to the agenda.

    This does not appear to be his position at all. Opposition to assaulting nazis, or any group, does not mean agreement that their position is potentially morally defensible. As with Siobhan, this is so inaccurate that it is either lazy thinking or a deliberate lie.
    ____________________________

    #30 abbeycadabra
    There’s a word for people who conflate “advocating for genocide” with “disagreement”. Actually, several. Collaborator, sympathizer, Quisling, Vichy, take your pick.

    Continuation of aforementioned trend…
    _________________________________

    #33 Siobhan
    The difference is that the “trespass” Peterson claims to suffer is the existence of trans people and/or uppity women, while the trespass Nazi’s victims suffer is violence and oppression.

    Colour me surprised that you’d find him sympathetic.

    Where did I express sympathy with any of his views? His only position that I know of (because I have never heard of him) is that he seems to think disagreements can and even should progress to violence if the other person cannot be convinced via argument. Apparently this needs mentioning: I don’t agree with that position at all, and did not express any agreement with it, even implicitly.

    What I did was juxtapose PZ’s disagreement with “talk ==> argue ==> assault” with his prior endorsement of skipping argument altogether and simply assaulting people if they espouse nazism.

  29. Saad says

    Holms, #36

    Same with anti-abortion campaigners. Same with anti-environment climate change deniers. (etc etc) Better assault them!

    You think the nature of the danger presented by Nazi marches through a diverse community is like the nature of the danger presented by anti-abortion and climate change deniers.

    Yikes.

    As before, it literally is an area of disagreement, for me and for you, because we both disagree with it. Strong, vehement rejection is disagreement.

    Jesus fuck, you’re a clueless fool.

    It’s not an area of disagreement in a good society worth calling civilized. Which tax plan to follow is a disagreement that is part of society and should be discussed. Subjugating trans people of color isn’t. Those who march out in public with torches and weapons to push for that should be made to shut the fuck up quickly and efficiently. With or without violence. Depends on the situation.

  30. consciousness razor says

    Saad:

    Nazis: Let’s threaten, intimidate, terrorize, harm, kill, and exterminate these groups of people.

    People like trevort: This is a valid topic to discuss. Add it to the agenda.

    Do you know how to say, with words, that it isn’t valid and isn’t going on the agenda? You say it “isn’t valid and isn’t going on the agenda.” Violence doesn’t actually fucking say that. And how about that: you can say these things with words. Your false dichotomy is just false, and presumably you know that, making you dishonest.

    Besides, the things which you’re suggesting are problematic (or would be suggesting, if you weren’t wildly inconsistent) include violence, threats and intimidation.

    This is not how a coherent argument turns out. And there certainly are lots coherent reasons to oppose Nazism. They just don’t revolve around whining that Nazis get to act like violent goons while you don’t. That might be how it works with children throwing tantrums, but it’s no way to develop a good society. Trump, the whole Republican party, glibertarians, Christian groups all over the country — they’re all perfect examples of how totally shitty that is. It isn’t a toy you get to play with, nor is it a reward for being on the “right side” — it’s the problem you’re (ostensibly) trying to address. The minute you stop thinking that way, you’ve definitely lost the fucking plot.

    It conveys a serious topic and call to action in a simplistic and comical way.

    I don’t think anything is funny about it.

    What if Nazis proposed “using the least violent method”? No, that’s not fucking alright either, because even threats and intimidation are unacceptable. If you thought they were acceptable, then that couldn’t be something you find objectionable about what they’re doing (or would do, might do in the future, etc.). It’s stunning that any of this shit needs to be pointed out here.

    abbeycadabra:

    Gosh, it must be nice to not actually be any of the people under direct threat by Nazis.

    Nazism threatens everyone in a society. Pretending otherwise, in order to make a cheap rhetorical jab, isn’t doing anything useful.

  31. Saad says

    Holms, #36

    Opposition to assaulting nazis, or any group, does not mean agreement that their position is potentially morally defensible.

    I love how you throw that “or any group” in there. What an asshole.

    The existence of Nazis being Nazis is a grave and serious threat to people and their families. Since the law doesn’t step in to shut them down, people have to resort to their own methods to take care of the situation. Sometimes that will include violence and that’s fine because they’re literally defending themselves and their families.

    You cannot deliberately make people’s own neighborhoods unsafe for them and then complain when they kick your ass. It’s really simple shit. Are you spewing this garbage out of privilege by any chance?

  32. consciousness razor says

    It’s not an area of disagreement in a good society worth calling civilized. Which tax plan to follow is a disagreement that is part of society and should be discussed. Subjugating trans people of color isn’t.

    I’m not sure if this is incredibly naive or totally nonsensical. Your choice. There’s nothing about a “tax plan,” which you’re saying is thus a disagreement meriting discussion, which implies it doesn’t pertain to the subjugation of any specific group of people you care to name. This is how awful shit gets done in the real world every fucking day, but somehow you have it in your head that it’s a categorically different or independent topic. It isn’t. And the moment you remember that we have real, large, systematic problems like that to worry about, you stop thinking (if you ever did think) that being violent toward this or that individual is any kind of solution for any of them. It just fucking isn’t.

  33. Saad says

    consciousness razor, #38

    What if Nazis proposed “using the least violent method”? No, that’s not fucking alright either, because even threats and intimidation are unacceptable. If you thought they were acceptable, then that couldn’t be something you find objectionable about what they’re doing (or would do, might do in the future, etc.).

    Are the Nazis using the violence in response to something? Like, say, being threatened and/or attacked when they were just minding their business in their homes and communities? Because that’s the kind of violence that I’m saying isn’t bad.

  34. ck, the Irate Lump says

    Holms wrote:

    Disagreement with someone should not progress to punching, but punch nazis on sight. There’s a word for this, and it ain’t ‘consistent’.

    There’s a word for someone who insists on being consistent 100% of the time: a dogmatist. I believe people should obey the law. I also believe people should practice civil disobedience against unjust laws. I’m terribly inconsistent, too. Most people are.

    Yes they are. Literally, they are 1) people 2) with whom I disagree.

    Do you understand that a subset is not the whole? PZ disagrees with Christians and has never endorsed punching them. He disagrees with conservatives, and doesn’t support punching them. He disagrees with libertarians and like all the others, they aren’t subject to the punching. He’s even disagreed with a lot of Democrats, and not a single mention that any of them should be punched. It’s almost as if it’s possible to see a difference between all these different groups of people.

    So by disagreeing with the ‘punch nazis on sight’ stance, I am now a nazi apologist, even though I oppose their politics in every way. Holy well poisoning, Batman!

    Well, you’re helping spread the Nazi propaganda that leftist are intending to start punching conservatives and centrists. What other term should I use for this? Maybe stop repeating Nazi propaganda if you don’t want to be called an apologist for them.

  35. consciousness razor says

    Are the Nazis using the violence in response to something?

    Are they? People do all sorts of shit. They’re probably not failing to do so, because people typically don’t lack things prompting responses from them.

    Like, say, being threatened and/or attacked when they were just minding their business in their homes and communities? Because that’s the kind of violence that I’m saying isn’t bad.

    Nazis might do that. They have a right to defend themselves, like anyone else. So, okay, you’re saying that some things Nazis might do aren’t bad. That’s an odd thing to say.

    Self-defense goes as far as killing people if necessary. Why aren’t you talking about how all of these people need to be killed, if what you actually have in mind is actual self-defense, as opposed to whatever aggression you think you can arguably get away with? Maybe you just want a bit of lebensraum for you and your kind, and that’s what you’re defending. It just gets more and more suspicious (or just plain terrifying), as you act more and more relaxed about what’s self-defense and what’s not.

    I don’t think you’ve done anything to understand what self-defense is actually about, nor do I think you care in the slightest whether any particular action is justified. You certainly haven’t bothered to spare a word of clarification about it here, to anybody who’s supposed to be reading and perhaps agreeing with you. It’s more like a gun nut who’s paranoid about “bad guys” and itching for an opportunity to be a hero and protect what’s theirs. That’s how it comes across to me, at any rate.

    I don’t expect a lot…. just expressing some kind of possibly-vague worry that there are lines to be drawn here, that you’ve spent no time giving even a sketch of what those might be like, that nobody who reads your words can read your mind and any of those people could easily take away the wrong conclusions from them (even if you don’t). Basically any genuine sense of responsibility would tell me that you might actually be talking about self-defense, and the lack of that is a pretty strong hint that you’re probably not. But you do tell yourself that it isn’t bad … is that really all we had to do this whole time?

  36. Feline says

    @Holms:

    His only position that I know of (because I have never heard of him) is that he seems to think disagreements can and even should progress to violence if the other person cannot be convinced via argument.

    “His only position that I know of (because I have never heard of him)”
    Maybe you should know who you’re stanning for?
    But let’s talk about what he was talking about, this time:

    And so I don’t think that men can control crazy women.

    Why should men control “crazy women”?
    And why do you feel that “crazy women” are even similar to Nazis?

    Apparently this needs mentioning: I don’t agree with that position at all, and did not express any agreement with it, even implicitly.

    Yeah, sure. So why are you here, stanning for a known trans-misogynist when he whines at length about how he’s not allowed to punch women?

    Also, when you say

    Yes they are. Literally, they are 1) people 2) with whom I disagree.

    I feel I must tell you that you managed to miss the words “not merely”. It does void your statement, since it points out, preemptively, that your claim of “Literally […]” is insufficient. There’s the rest of the Nazism, which you chose to elide.
    That, right there, is where you are named “Quisling”.

    If this displeases you, stop pretending that genocide is a valid policy. Furthermore you and yours could stop insinuating that I’d punch my friends over our disagreement vis-a-vis taxation, do you even know what a political disagreement entails, for fuck’s sake?

  37. consciousness razor says

    There’s a word for someone who insists on being consistent 100% of the time: a dogmatist.

    The word for someone who says things like that is “bullshitter.”

    Atheists have problems with believing there’s a god — it’s unsupported, indefensible, false, can lead to lots of other bad behaviors, etc.

    Here’s something you don’t see. Atheists don’t think long and hard about such things, then sincerely come to conclusion, “yes, I know what we ought to do about this: exactly what we decided is problematic. Praise Jesus.” That shit doesn’t happen.

    If it makes them dogmatists for having some particular set of ideas running through their heads instead of others, then everybody’s a fucking dogmatist. Which of course doesn’t get you anywhere, and in any case, it’s much easier to believe you’re just bullshitting.

    A few more questions for Saad:
    Since when have people needed a “call to action” to engage in self-defense? Is there something you need to tell us about self-defense specifically against Nazis, like you’re teaching defense against the dark arts or some shit? Are we just too fucking stupid to know that we ought to be able to defend ourselves? Or why exactly do we need your motivation or instruction or whatever it is that you’re supposed to be offering via blog comments, memes, etc.? I fortunately haven’t had to defend myself in years, and I’d rather forget it if I could…. Am I being called to act, is my elderly grandmother, etc., and if so, what the fuck is anyone being told to do? How did I manage to do it years ago, without anybody like you calling me to act? If it really were about self-defense, and assuming you’re not a martial arts instructor or wizarding professor or whatever, then why fucking bother with whatever you think you’re doing? Do you sincerely believe that someone somewhere has been arguing against it, and who do you think that may be?

  38. Holms says

    I missed this portion when I replied to #30 earlier:

    #30 abbeycadabra
    Gosh, it must be nice to not actually be any of the people under direct threat by Nazis. To people like Holms, whether or not to round up and execute people of color, queer people, and disabled people is an issue for due consideration and dispassionate debate over a nice snifter of brandy.

    What makes you think you know the faintest thing about my particular demographics? You have made a classic erroneous assumption: that all people who disagree with you don’t have a personal stake in the matter. Except… half of my parentage is jewish. I only exist because that side of my family managed to escape Poland ahead of war in the 1930s. Their surname was Jacob, they would surely have been rounded up. Fuck you and your lazy assumptions.
    ____________________________

    #37 Saad
    You think the nature of the danger presented by Nazi marches through a diverse community is like the nature of the danger presented by anti-abortion and climate change deniers.

    Yikes.

    “Like”? Yes, in that there are analogous elements, but not that they are the same. That would be your inference. The harm caused by anti-abortionists for example is directed along demographic lines, and includes trans people.

    Jesus fuck, you’re a clueless fool.

    It’s not an area of disagreement in a good society worth calling civilized.

    Again, it literally is, in that the bulk of society rejects nazism. Perhaps you are mistaking my wording to mean friendly disagreement? As in, in the agree-to-disagree sense? It is in fact an area of intense, vehement disagreement. I simply maintain that you don’t get to assault anyone, even horrible people.
    ____________________________

    #39 Saad

    Opposition to assaulting nazis, or any group, does not mean agreement that their position is potentially morally defensible.

    I love how you throw that “or any group” in there. What an asshole.

    Oh? I had groups like the KKK in mind when writing that, what were you thinking of? My wording there was a compromise between two things: stating a general case, and listing off a bunch of repugnant groups. I probably should have made that more clear.

    As a generally applicable case then: Opposition to assaulting X organisation / group / etc. does imply that I support or am a member of X. It’s just a statement of what should be blindingly, insultingly obvious: you don’t get to commit assault, no matter who the target is.

    Sometimes that will include violence and that’s fine because they’re literally defending themselves and their families.

    I agree… provided there is a proximate physical threat.

    Are you spewing this garbage out of privilege by any chance?

    Unlike abbeycadabra, at least you asked before resorting to a lazy assumption. So I’ll repeat for your benefit, in case you are skipping the sections that are in reply to others: half of my parentage is jewish. Nazis would consider me dirt just as much as if I were black, trans, gay, Roma etc. etc.
    _________________________

    #41 Saad
    Are the Nazis using the violence in response to something? Like, say, being threatened and/or attacked when they were just minding their business in their homes and communities? Because that’s the kind of violence that I’m saying isn’t bad.

    Um. So you’re saying they get to defend themselves if/when you happen to assault them? How generous.
    _________________________

    #42 ck
    I believe people should obey the law. I also believe people should practice civil disobedience against unjust laws.

    Sure, framed a certain way, that constitutes inconsistency. But look at it another way: you have an idea of justice and hence which laws are or are not just, and you are saying ‘people should obey the laws that are just and protest those that are not.’ Your apparently inconsistent behaviour is actually completely consistent with this deeper behavioural guide.

    And I agree with the latter framing, that we should behave in a manner consistent with our idea of morality. Mine precludes assaulting people… yours apparently has an asterisk next to that.

    Do you understand that a subset is not the whole? PZ disagrees with Christians and has never endorsed punching them. He disagrees with conservatives, and doesn’t support punching them. [etc] It’s almost as if it’s possible to see a difference between all these different groups of people.

    And that’s difference is precisely what I’m trying to get at: what is it that causes nazis – but not other groups whose policies would kill people along demographic lines – to lose some of their rights?

    Well, you’re helping spread the Nazi propaganda that leftist are intending to start punching conservatives and centrists. What other term should I use for this? Maybe stop repeating Nazi propaganda if you don’t want to be called an apologist for them.

    Wow. I’m actually trying to respond to the wording people used rather than being accused of putting words in their mouths, but I guess I can stop expecting any honest argument out of you if you believe that.

  39. trevort says

    @Holms

    I’m entirely in agreement with your position on this, and your assesment of my position (stated in #36) is completely correct.
    I really don’t understand the thinking that goes along the lines of
    “If you don’t agree with the way *I* think some bad/disagreeable/evil people should be dealt with, then you’re obviously a supporter of such people”. The thought process behind this is so shallow.

  40. Siobhan says

    @48 trevort

    The thought process behind this is so shallow.

    You’re being met with hostility because you patently refuse to acknowledge the circumstances that led up to support of punching Nazis.

    Law enforcement isn’t going to do jack shit and Nazis have never once been discouraged by peaceful protest. In fact, we are seeing, right now, law enforcement mining footage of August 12 in Charlottesville to find excuses to arrest the anti-Nazi protesters, going so far as to collaborate with 4chan. So, worse than “jack shit,” they’re targeting us for resisting Nazis.

    There are no more options. You can’t debate someone who makes no meaningful claims. You can’t peacefully protest someone who doesn’t care about public opinion. You can’t trust law enforcement to settle the situation because they’ll arrest you for bleeding on the fucking sidewalk.

    So we got dudebro Holms and now dudebro you strutting in, delighted for another excuse to finger-wag at the undesirables. I’d ask what you’d do in our situation, with nowhere to turn and no one to help, but you’ll never be in that situation because society exists to privilege your existences. Perhaps this prevents you from seeing the necessity of including violence on our list of options.

    Lastly there’s the frustrating tendency both you and Holms have, which is to zoom out from specifics and start talking in the abstract. We aren’t talking abstract. Nazis are here. Actual white supremacists with their own take on American fascism. If neither of you can figure out the difference between a member of the majority advocating to control the minority through violence, and the minority seeking to preserve its health through community defence, then you lack enough knowledge on power dynamics to have any meaningful contribution.

  41. says

    Uh, no. Nazis are not merely “‘people’ [they] disagree with”. They’re goddamn Nazis.

    Yes they are. Literally, they are 1) people 2) with whom I disagree.

    And here we have Holms pretending not to know what the word “merely” means, i.e. more than that. Yes, I disagree with Nazis. And they want to kill me and mine and tried their best in the past.

    cr

    Nazism threatens everyone in a society. Pretending otherwise, in order to make a cheap rhetorical jab, isn’t doing anything useful.

    WTF? That’s as close to saying “all lives matter” without typing the words. No, Nazis don’t threaten “everyone”. There are groups that are pretty safe from Nazis going on through their every day. There are people who get a choice in whether they want to be threatened by Nazis. And then there are those who don’t. Pretending that a Jewish woman, a black teenager and a straight cis white dude are equally under threat from Nazis is, I don’t even know what word to use. Maybe disgusting does the trick.

    Since when have people needed a “call to action” to engage in self-defense?

    You are too intelligent to be this stupid. The history of resistance to about every murderous regime from slavery to fascism shows that people need a “call to action” to defend themselves because humans are awfully easily subjugated and made complicit in their subjugation. Do you think the Warshaw Ghetto Rising was self-defence? Do you believe it was spontaneous? Or was there organisation and calls to action? The liberation of Buchenwald?

  42. trevort says

    @49 Siobhan
    Firstly, the line of mine that you quote was written in the context of my previous line … not the broader “punch *someone*” discussion” (although that earlier line did of course emerge from earlier comment on that punching topic).

    Secondly: I can see that a sense of helplessness, or a belief that there is ‘no other recourse’ could lead to people taking the ‘law’ into their own hands. “Kangaroo courts” and “mob justice” I think are two terms that appear along that path. I obviously don’t see things (from a distance, admittedly) as having gotten to that point.
    I’m not American – so for that reason alone I’m clearly not a target of the people you fear.

    … another excuse to finger-wag at the undesirables …

    What? Inferiority complex much? My original comment was directed at PZ .. is he somehow on a ‘minorities’ list (I know little about him beyond his blog)?

    I’d ask what you’d do in our situation, with nowhere to turn and no one to help, but you’ll never be in that situation because society exists to privilege your existences.

    I live in Africa .. you sure I’ll “never be in that situation” ? Or shall I just grant you the ‘most minor of minorities’ card and we can move on?
    Either way: I can’t see how randomly punching idiots who self-identify with an evil ideology is going to succeed at anything. What actual progress do you think this achieves in making the country/world safer/fairer for you?

    We aren’t talking abstract. Nazis are here. Actual white supremacists with their own take on American fascism.

    The thing is: Concepts spoken about in abstract – human rights, laws of the land, right-not-to-be-assaulted etc. – only matter if actually applied in the ‘not abstract’ world. It’s a bit pointless to ‘abstractly agree’ on a reasonable social contract and then throw that out the window when it comes time to apply it in the real world.
    Some social contracts that I think apply here (not all on the same ‘side’) are ‘freedom of speech/expression’, ‘hate speech’, ‘rule of law’. I feel hate speech should be banned, and that brandishing Nazi regalia could be construed as hate speech, and thus the ‘law of the land’ should be applied. That it is not is indeed disturbing but the question still is: Are you at the point where anarchy should rule?

    If neither of you can figure out the difference between a member of the majority advocating to control the minority through violence

    Are you suggesting that the Nazis are in the majority in the US? Perhaps you base that on Trump’s success. I’m sure you’re aware he lost the popular vote, suggesting even if everyone who voted for him was a Nazi (they’re not) they would still not be the majority.

    Irrespective of arguments for pre-emptive punching, I can’t see how (as Holms pointed out), the above blog post is consistent with the sentiment ”I approve of Nazi-punching”. How can anyone who wrote that sentence be outraged by this Jordan Peterson chap?

  43. consciousness razor says

    WTF? That’s as close to saying “all lives matter” without typing the words.

    It’s a threat to an entire society at a foundational level, which threatens everyone in it. That’s about as far as it gets from people saying “all lives matter” (or “blue lives matter”), to try to invalidate the focus on violence/injustice against blacks and to downplay the significance of the problem.

    There are people who get a choice in whether they want to be threatened by Nazis. And then there are those who don’t.

    What the fuck are you trying to say? I have no clue what this could mean.

    Pretending that a Jewish woman, a black teenager and a straight cis white dude are equally under threat from Nazis is, I don’t even know what word to use.

    I’m a progressive atheist, and you know perfectly well that their hate goes well beyond race or gender.

    Even if not “equally” so (your word, not mine), whatever you think that amounts to, in fact they are all under threat. Nobody is fucking safe, because it is thoroughly destructive to the whole society which every fucking body lives in.

    You are too intelligent to be this stupid.

    I think you’re equivocating about (or just don’t understand) the meaning of the word “self-defense,” which is about an individual, a natural person or a “self,” who must act defensively in a specific, concrete set of circumstances, because their own life is in immediate danger in some such circumstance. Every human being has a moral and political right to do that. They already do have that right, according at least to US laws, not to mention common sense. Presumably, none of that changes by any of these considerations having specifically to do with present-day neo-Nazis in the US.

    There’s no doubt in mind my that calls to action, in the most general and abstract sense, can be appropriate and necessary. This is not to suggest that, because there were (valid, important, good, just) calls to action during the American Revolution, for instance, then every act of violence in any way related to it was thus an act of self-defense. It doesn’t follow that because the country (not a person) was in some sense defending itself from British tyranny, that therefore the concept of self-defense applies to all of the patriots in the country, whenever they were doing anything whatsoever about it. No, in fact, some were guilty of murdering people on the enemy side. That’s not self-defense, and it’s an entirely separate question from how righteous their cause was in the grand scheme of things. One is not a substitute for the other, and you don’t get to swap these things around arbitrarily. That’s not how it fucking works.

  44. consciousness razor says

    WTF? That’s as close to saying “all lives matter” without typing the words.

    Since I guess thinking in slogans has become the name of the game, let me put it this way….. It’s sort of like “patriarchy hurts men too.” Better?

  45. says

    cr

    Even if not “equally” so (your word, not mine), whatever you think that amounts to, in fact they are all under threat. Nobody is fucking safe, because it is thoroughly destructive to the whole society which every fucking body lives in.

    That’s bloody bullshit. There were many people in Germany in 1936 who lived pretty happy lives. Not the least because they were fucking Nazis. Fascism is a political system, not an apocalyptic movie. It’s a system of white supremacy. You’re equating the victims and the perpetrators.

    I’m a progressive atheist, and you know perfectly well that their hate goes well beyond race or gender.

    You’re telling that to somebody whose family members were the first people to be in the concentration camp, so I bloody well know that. It still means that people who are at risk for their political views can decide to keep their mouths shut or even renounce their views. You cannot renounce your skin colour.

    I think you’re equivocating about (or just don’t understand) the meaning of the word “self-defense,” which is about an individual, a natural person or a “self,” who must act defensively in a specific, concrete set of circumstances, because their own life is in immediate danger in some such circumstance.

    No, I’m just having a broader definition.
    Also, nice victim blaming in your “Since when have people needed a “call to action” to engage in self-defense?”

  46. says

    The police targeting anti-Nazi protestors for investigation. That one needs to be nipped on the bud. They think Nazi-protestors are an investigative priority over the Nazies they are protesting? That’s got the social threat levels messed up. Incompetance at a level I consider a social threat.

    I still think Saad’s position is a good choice and Saad’s respondents don’t seem to be doing anything that will solve any social problem relevant to what Saad was concerned about.

    Literal Nazis here in America saying that they get to do their Nazi business nowners that Donald Trump is president. Protesting is just one necessary response. This one is going to require criticism of family for providing support to Nazis through their actions (Facebook posting and forwarding in my case) and other things still.

  47. Holms says

    #49 Siobhan
    So we got dudebro Holms and now dudebro you strutting in, delighted for another excuse to finger-wag at the undesirables. I’d ask what you’d do in our situation, with nowhere to turn and no one to help, but you’ll never be in that situation because society exists to privilege your existences.

    Another person making the lazy assumption that I don’t have a personal stake in this. Again, I wouldn’t be alive if not for my Polish/Hungarian jewish grandparents escaping ahead of being rounded up.

    Perhaps this prevents you from seeing the necessity of including violence on our list of options.

    No, my stance against assault is what does that.
    ______________________________

    #50 Giliel
    And here we have Holms pretending not to know what the word “merely” means, i.e. more than that. Yes, I disagree with Nazis. And they want to kill me and mine and tried their best in the past.

    Same here. Doesn’t change shit, hence my disregard of ‘merely’. Disagreeing about someone’s politics, no matter how vehement and fundamental that disagreement may be, does not void a person’s right to be free of assault. Hell, not even convicted murderers lose that right.

  48. says

    @46 Holms

    half of my parentage is jewish. I only exist because that side of my family managed to escape Poland ahead of war in the 1930s.

    Then you should be super-duper extra embarrassed for protecting and shilling for the people who tried to round up and kill your own family. You’re not, and that’s… well, that’s why it’s easy for them to come back, isn’t it? You and the people like you who constantly bleat “But THESE Nazis aren’t like THOSE Nazis it took a whole world war to get rid of!”

  49. Holms says

    #58 Giliell
    At which point in the long chain of somebody planning to murder someone is it ok to stop them with violence?
    Because when the GeStaPo is ringing at your door it is a tad late…

    When they make a move against you, rather than simply spouting rancid shit about jews or whatever, because that constitutes escalating from speech to action.
    _________________________

    #59 abbeycadabra
    Then you should be super-duper extra embarrassed for protecting and shilling for the people who tried to round up and kill your own family.

    Say rather that I should be super duper on guard against becoming what I oppose, by avoiding weakly justified repugnant behaviour. Pre-emptive violence for example.

    You and the people like you who constantly bleat “But THESE Nazis aren’t like THOSE Nazis it took a whole world war to get rid of!”

    Please point to any example of me saying that.

  50. says

    Please point to any example of me saying that.

    It took not merely violence, but coordinated, massive, multi-country-backed violence to end the previous Nazi scourge.

    This is a fact.

    So every time you say we shouldn’t use violence on Nazis, you are saying this, because you are claiming THIS time THESE Nazis can be stopped with stern words and a wag of the finger. Never mind they already started killing people.

    Obviously.

    You blithering dolt.

    You have chosen to join the enemy. What would your ancestors say about you refusing to stand up to fascism?

  51. Holms says

    #62 Giliell
    So, at the point when it’s actually too late. Thank you for nothing.

    At the point where it becomes self defense, as opposed to pre-emptive self defense a.k.a. assault. You muppet.
    _______________________

    #63 abbeycadabra
    Wow, you actually see this as WWIII. Your catastrophism has rendered you witless on this topic.

  52. consciousness razor says

    Like I said, Holms: gun nuts. You always shoot first in this style of “self-defense.” Because if you don’t, bad things could possibly happen to you, thus demonstrating that real self-defense is immoral (and now fascist). Bad things can only ever happen to other people — I got mine, fuck you, as they say — that’s how you know your deliberately egocentric and paranoid system is working as planned, that you are on the right side which has received justice and divine blessings. If it’s not all under your control, or that of a trusted deity, so that there’s even a remote chance of something bad ever happening to you, then you must immediately fix that or risk losing something (could be anything actually, but make it very dramatic if you want). Also, we should probably bomb everybody now and get it over with. As long as no “American lives” are lost, we can consider it a success. Apparently, for the people out there who’ve learned to transcend basic consistency and so forth, it all makes some kind of “sense.” We just happen to be the unlucky ones.

  53. Rob Grigjanis says

    cr @67:

    You always shoot first in this style of “self-defense.”

    Yeah, isn’t that the Bush Doctrine?

  54. Rob Grigjanis says

    Here’s something I heartily approve of: Life After Hate. No surprise that Trump discontinued their funding, but they more than made up for it with crowdfunding.

  55. says

    When the guy drove at a crowd. Are you being deliberately obtuse?

    As I said, completely useless. Listen you unsalted block of butter, your high moral horse definition of self-defence allows for Nazis to organise, intimidate opponents, jail dissidents, plan genocide and carry it out because according to your definition the victims are only allowed violence at the point when the doors of the gas chamber are locked and someone turns the handle to inject Zyklon B.
    It allows Nazis to carry openly weapons you are no sooner allowed to stop than than the moment they shoot. In short, you are helping Nazis.

  56. KG says

    Disagreeing about someone’s politics, no matter how vehement and fundamental that disagreement may be, does not void a person’s right to be free of assault. Hell, not even convicted murderers lose that right. – Holms@57

    That’s because convicted murderers are going to be either (a) in prison, or (b) released because they are assessed as no longer a threat. To talk about the open advocacy of genocide as “someone’s politics” makes it quite clear that you are, at best, a “useful idiot” for the Nazis. And your pretence that those arguing against you are taking an “always shout first” position shows that you are utterly unable to argue your position honestly.

  57. Holms says

    #70 Giliell
    …your high moral horse definition of self-defence allows for Nazis to [1]organise, [2]intimidate opponents, [3]jail dissidents, [2]plan genocide and [4]carry it out because according to your definition the victims are only allowed violence at the point when the doors of the gas chamber are locked and someone turns the handle to inject Zyklon B.

    Wrong on all points. What part of ‘don’t commit assault even against nazis’ implies acceptence of [1] conspiracy to commit murder, [2] intimidation / stalking / etc., [3] kidnapping, [4] murder? It doesn’t, except by the laziest of lazy reasoning on your part. All of those things are crimes, and I have never disputed them being crimes. You just don’t get to assault people, including potential criminals, including actual criminals, and being against assaulting them does not imply acceptence of their potential or actual crimes. So simple an amoeba could understand it.

    (Are you being deliberately dishonest in your reasoning?)
    ______________________________

    #71 KG
    That’s because convicted murderers are going to be either (a) in prison, or (b) released because they are assessed as no longer a threat.

    I used convicted very deliberately, as it means that a person has indeed been determined to have murdered beyond a reasonable doubt. Which stands in stark contrast to the potential future crimes a nazi might commit. People are talking of depriving nazis of the right to be free of assault on the basis of crimes which have yet to be (and may never be) actualised, while maintaining that right for those whose potential crime has been actualised.

  58. says

    What part of ‘don’t commit assault even against nazis’ implies acceptence of [1] conspiracy to commit murder, [2] intimidation / stalking / etc., [3] kidnapping, [4] murder?

    All of those things are crimes

    Denser than lead…
    You fully accept Nazis’ organising and intimidating people. They are doing so every day. They did so en masse in Charlottesville. The police is turning a blind eye, so talking about “crimes” is ridiculous when the Nazis can get arrest warrants for the people they beat up.
    You are barring means to stop them from gaining more power, to protect communities, which means you’re accepting that they may come to official power at which point none of their shit is a crime anymore but their victims are just as dead.
    Better look for a country to run to this time, only there are pretty few left where you may find refuge.

  59. Holms says

    #74 Giliell
    You are barring means to stop them from gaining more power, to protect communities…
    I’m arguing against assaulting people, yes, which is only one means of opposition (and a shit one at that). Because it is immoral, even when the target is vile.

    which means you’re accepting that they may come to official power at which point none of their shit is a crime anymore but their victims are just as dead.

    No it doesn’t, it means I’m opposing the violent politics that nazis and you both embrace.

    Better look for a country to run to this time, only there are pretty few left where you may find refuge.

    Speaking of embracing nazi tactics, here you are telling someone with jewish ancestry to flee the country. From a person calling themselves a progressive! Amazing.

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