anti social justice tumblr

types of tumblr people to stay away from for your own good
  • justifies harassment with power dynamics
  • justifies harassment with mental illness
  • justifies harassment with morals
  • unironically & actively engages in callout culture
  • guilt trips people, including large groups of people, based on superficial and impersonal things
  • fear-mongers and seeks to amplify tension between social groups
  • is a part of a “hostile clique” kind of group of friends
  • tells people to conceal personal information or opinions due to those being “problematic”
  • makes you choose between x and being their friend
  • nitpicks on literally everything to find something to complain about
  • claims to be or acts like they’re morally flawless
You are just as responsible for your fandom activism as creators are for their fanworks.

More so, in fact, because your primary purpose is telling people what to do or not do. Any instructive value in creative work is understood to be subordinate to entertainment and self-expression, but if you’re out there explicitly advocating for something, you’d damn well be ready to own it. Including all its implications and potential negative effects.

That means: If you’re urging people not to create some kind of fanwork because you think that’ll protect a vulnerable group, you’d better be ready to account for the members of that group who make it, enjoy it, and find solace in it.

That means: If you’re urging retaliation against creators, you are absofuckinglutely responsible for the harm that befalls them as a result, including harm to members of the group you’re trying to protect.

That means: If you’re holding everyone else to high standards about how they could affect someone with a trigger-able mental illness, you need to hold yourself to the same standards, including effects on people whose anxiety manifests as over-scrupulosity or intrusive thoughts.

That means: If you’re shaming erotica you find “gross,” you don’t get to blow off conversations about how that shame plays into conservative sexual-purity enforcement. You don’t get to wash your hands of the implications, whether or not that’s what you meant. Explicit activism has far more duty to consider indirect implications than anyone’s personal pursuit of sexual fulfillment does.

That means: If your activism has garnered you a huge follower count, you are responsible for the exposure you inflict on the people you pick fights with, and the dogpiles or hate mobs you incite. This can be a tough thing to learn if you get popular overnight, and even well-meaning people fumble with it at first, but it’s something you have to figure out. And don’t fucking give me that “it was just a block list, I didn’t mean for anyone to go into their askboxes on anon and tell them all to kill themselves” crap, the only people fooled by it are the ones looking for an excuse to be fooled.

That means: You are responsible for assessing the relative power and influence of the people you’re addressing, and not griefing marginalized subcultural small fry over artistic sins that are far more egregious among canon creators. Especially canon creators who are just as accessible on Twitter as fanwork creators are on Tumblr.

(Pre-emptive response to objections to the preceding paragraph: Only going after people you know you have social power over isn’t activism, it’s bullying with a thin veneer of activist lingo smeared over it. Only trying to clean up your immediate surroundings isn’t activism, it’s complaining to the local homeowners’ association–valid enough if someone’s running their chainsaw at 2am, but if you just can’t stand Betty’s problematic lawn flamingoes, dressing it up as concern for what tacky decorations say about the neighborhood is a little precious.)

If any of that is too burdensome for you, I suggest you take the advice fandom activists tend to have for fanartists and authors: if you can’t do it without doing damage and you’re not prepared to deal with the consequences, abstain. Restrict your activism to shit that’s not going to hurt people, even if that’s just being the best role model you can be.

You want to set yourself up as a moral authority? You want to dictate what people can and can’t create without activist blowback? That’s power–and yes, local power in a community can exist irrespective of society-wide systemic advantage. With power comes responsibility. Use it wisely or not, as you choose, but don’t act like you get to hold anyone accountable for their art’s indirect potential to harm if you don’t want to be accountable for your direct advocacy.

Hypocrisy

Black SJW: *makes joke about white people*

White person: “You’re racist”

Black SJW: “It’s a joke lmao calm down!! And y'all tell us we can’t take a joke?? You can’t be racist towards white people!!”

White person: *makes a joke about black people*

Black SJW: “You’re racist”

Jokes are jokes, people. Both sides need to start chilling out, don’t go screaming ‘racism’ about jokes.

Things the third wave feminism does not focus on:

- The oppression of women in middle eastern countries.

- The wage gap that exists outside America.

- Countries where women’s literacy is extremely low.

Things the third wave feminism does focus on:

-Men sitting with their legs open on the bus.

-The end of the friendzone.

-Female criminals and their glorification.

-”OMG IT’S 2K15 WHY DON’T WE HAVE FREE TAMPONS?”

fiction is not responsible for reality

OK, I’m going to come right out and say it:

Fiction does not affect reality.

Fiction affects people. And people affect reality.

Can fiction have an indirect effect on reality? Sure. But it’s not what’s responsible. People are the ones with moral agency. They are the ones responsible for what they do with the ideas they’ve been exposed to.

You want to defuse the harm you think a work of fiction can do? Target the links in the chain that actually matter:

  • Criticize bad ideas to change how they affect people. Don’t criticize with the aim of suppressing, criticize with the aim of discrediting. Censorship/silencing just keeps people from being exposed to ideas once, in a particular context, and leaves them unprepared when they encounter them elsewhere or come up with them themselves. A thorough rebuttal of a bad idea inoculates them against it and puts them on their guard next time they run into it.

  • Educate people about what aspects of a work of fiction would be harmful or dangerous in real life. If applicable, educate them on how to safely experience something similar. Don’t educate with the aim of killing their love of the fictional version–you will lose them, and it’s cruel and unnecessary. Educate with the aim of promoting understanding of how the fictional version does, and doesn’t, translate to reality.

Like. These are the underlying worries beneath “fiction affects reality,” aren’t they? Worry that someone will absorb messed-up ideas that aren’t adequately disclaimed/discredited in the text. Worry that someone will try to act out something that looks fun and exciting in fiction but is dangerous in real life. So cut out the middleman and go straight to the person whose choices affect reality. Don’t smack the book out of their hand, just tell them: I know you like that ship, but it’s okay if a similar RL relationship sets off all your alarm bells and leaves you scrambling for the exit. Because no matter how romantic the ship is, IRL that would be abuse.

Fiction needn’t be educational and fiction doesn’t always have clear-cut endorsements of who’s in the right. But the discussion that happens around fiction can include both.

Examples of white culture

I absolutely hate the racist notion that white people have no culture. Poc sjws usually say this type of shit, so this post provides some examples of beautiful white cultures.

 Think about these images before you spew your racist crap.


German culture


Irish culture


Scottish culture


Romanian culture


Polish culture


Italian culture


Russian culture


These are just some beautiful white cultures that exist. White cultures are amazing!

If someone has other cultures to add to this, go ahead!

Towards a working definition of “anti”

Most of us know it when we see it, but I figure any discussion about fandom antis and how to respond to them would benefit from having a solid answer to “what even is an anti, anyway?” Laying out the exact characteristics that distinguish anti wank from every other kind of wank also helps clarify what, exactly, is going on here, why it’s appalling, and also why it’s appealing to those who engage in it.

I’m going to define it as a behavior rather than a particular type of person. The anti movement is:

1. A form of intra-community aggression within fandom, that
2. Seeks, as its primary goal, to designate out-groups who are fair game for social brutality, by
3. Categorically declaring certain forms of fan engagement (ships, characters, fic genres, fanart styles, video game mods…) to be intrinsically morally wrong and in need of stamping out, regardless of how or why one engages with them, and
4. Justifies this by claiming a causal relationship between the targeted activities and some form of (usually SJ-flavored) real-world harm that they allegedly promote.

The order is important, because it goes from most to least essential. 1 is fundamental context, 2 is ultimate purpose, 3 is the mechanism used to accomplish that purpose, 4 is the justification for using that mechanism.

Let’s take it number by number.

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Tumblr witches= delusional bitches


I’ve seen so many posts calling for “weather witches” to help the people in hurricane affected areas by “joining energies uwu!!!!” To dispel the storm.


Honestly fuck right on off if you’re seriously claiming to be helping people by doing that. If you want to ACTUALLY help them donate to reputable organizations and/or volunteer . You’re not helping anyone by posting “emoji spells” and mashing up leaves with sparkly rocks and you should feel bad about yourselves.

Before I was exposed to social justice ideologies I never even saw color. Prior to being introduced to those ideologies I never noticed what people’s races were, it was never important to me and it still isn’t. Now, every time I watch a video, whether I agree or disagree with the content, I see the person’s skin tone. If it’s a white person arguing against social justice, I already know that they’ll be ridiculed based on their skin color. If it’s a black person speaking about social justice, I already know they’ll be congratulated. It made me see in color, now one of the first things I notice about someone is what the color of their skin is, now I’m afraid of being perceived as racist because my skin is light or because I said something a “"person of color”“ deemed bad. Prior to opposing social justice, I’ve never been called racist in my life, but as soon as I started openly disagreeing with the mainstream opinions of ”“people of color”“, I started being called racist left and right. Everyone is seeing in color now, not just me. It’s toxic.

3

Expressing my opinion on antifa and anticentrism has been something I’ve been meaning to do so for like 10 weeks. Some of you probably thought I was dead, after that one comic about the pizza that got a poor reception. 

Keep reading

On “romanticizing” unhealthy things in fiction

This is a loose elaboration on @tanannariva‘s excellent post about anti-shippers’ tendency to sling around words like “romanticization” and “normalization” like they’re magic incantations that mean “QED, you are making this happen in real life!” I’m going to leave “normalization” aside for the moment because my contribution would basically be an incoherent snarl of “shrieking that we need more taboos on something that’s already taboo, and has its roots in shit that’s already normal, is just doubling down on the reasons the entire subject is such a stigmatized clusterfuck and it’s the fucking opposite of radical or progressive.” Let’s talk a bit about romanticization, using the original post’s definition of “to describe something as being better or more attractive or interesting than it really is.” In particular, let’s talk about stories whose portrayal of fucked-up, abusive relationships does romanticize them, and where exactly the connection is with real-life abuse apologism.

The thing is that stories, by their very nature, tend to portray things as more attractive and interesting than they really are. When you go through something harrowing and console yourself with “well, at least it will make a great story to tell later,” you’re explicitly planning on distilling the interesting parts from an experience that was a grinding nightmare slog of misery at the time. Many stories are also ways to rehearse the various kinds of shit life might throw at you and transmit models for how people deal with it–and in order to actually be transmitted, they have to be in a form that is interesting, memorable, and engaging.

Also, people fantasize all the time about stuff that’s attractive but too dangerous, costly, or immoral to actually pursue. A cliffside with a spectacular view is attractive. Sleeping in on a weekday is attractive. Taking gory revenge on people who’ve hurt you or cut you off in traffic is attractive. The problem isn’t the attraction. The problem is when people’s idea of the real-life consequences gets skewed. You don’t fix that by telling them to stop finding the thing appealing, you fix that by saying “hey, I know this is fun to imagine, but I feel like we need a reality check on how disastrous the non-fictional version is.”

And of course these two things–dramatizing and fantasizing–are often combined, in the form of stories where obstacles are downplayed or the extent of what people can accomplish is exaggerated. Which is generally OK and understood. Sometimes the execution is criticized for breaking suspension of disbelief or for the implications of what’s downplayed and what isn’t, but even little kids learn pretty early on that just because they read it in a book or saw it on TV doesn’t mean they should try it at home. When they don’t, that’s when the reality check becomes necessary.

In the specific case of stories about abusive relationships… a lot of the most compelling ones are about taking something wild, something that hurts people and would happily hurt you, and domesticating it. Not just taming it, not just making its dangerous qualities work for you, but befriending it and loving it and incorporating it into the fabric of your everyday life. It’s a story that humans find perpetually attractive because that’s what we do, that’s what’s behind a lot of our success, we’re the crazy fuckers who turned wolves into border collies and wild horses into Shetland ponies. The more resistant something actually is to domestication, the more we like stories about the crazy fucker who pulled it off anyway. The attraction isn’t the problem. The problem is that in real life, when it comes to human personalities and relationships that will probably hurt you, there is widespread denial of how dangerous, harmful, and resistant to change some types can be. There is widespread playing-up of the romantic appeal and widespread ignorance of how illusory and manipulative the appealing parts are. And YOU WILL NOT FIX ANYTHING BY DENYING THE APPEAL OR TELLING PEOPLE TO STOP FINDING IT ATTRACTIVE. 

Yes, it is helpful to tell stories about how the cycle of abuse really works, but not because they’ll refute or replace the romanticized fantasy, or destroy its appeal. They won’t. What they’ll do is similar to what an out-of-story reality check or an “abusive relationship” tag will do: they’ll say “hey, when this does happen it’s actually pretty awful.” And they’ll go beyond that to give people models for what shit looks like and possible ways to deal with it. They’ll do that even if some of their edges are filed off and some of their agony is distilled into drama, which is why it’s the opposite of helpful to lump everything you think is flawed/ambivalent/insufficiently realistic into the “romanticizing” category and try to exterminate it all. That actively suppresses resources that might actually reach people who are into the romanticized stuff and have picked up distorted ideas about abuse.

(By all means, criticize and discuss the depiction… but with the goal of illuminating nuances the original story glossed over or bungled, not making the bad thing go away. That’s the other thing that’s so nonsensical about focusing these book-burning campaigns on fanfiction of all things: not only does it come with built-in warning labels, it comes with a built-in book club and author Q&A session. You want context, author clarification, cautionary notes about the narratives the story seems to be pushing, alternate narratives, education about the realistic outcome? They’re all just as easy to attach to the work itself as screeds about what a terrible person the author is.)

Basically, the world is full of stuff that’s great fun in stories but wretched IRL for everyone except the 1% of freaks lucky enough to be Into That Sort Of Thing. Wilderness survival. Swordfights with no safety gear. Extreme painplay as kink. Emergencies where a non-pilot somehow has to land the plane without killing everyone. And since society is messed up, “whirlwind romances with brooding, jealous, obsessive antiheroes” only make it onto the list intermittently, often with vehement blowback. That’s what’s out of whack and needs fixing.

You will not fix it by trying to convince people that swashbuckling duel scenes aren’t fun if the characters aren’t wearing safety gear. You will get even-more-vehement blowback if the people who enjoy the romance equivalent of swashbuckling have even the slightest reason to suspect your PSA about safety is a front for an attempt to take away their unrealistic fantasies, replace them with fencing-tournament footage, and make them watch gory cautionary tales about what will happen to them if they leave their protective gear off. The only way to get anywhere is to accept that it’s okay to see the appeal in romanticized depictions of relationships that would be abusive IRL, because the appeal is separate from understanding how the IRL consequences would play out. Work on people’s understanding of the consequences. In the end, all the hand-wringing about the appeal boils down to worrying that it will distort people’s understanding of the consequences. So focus on what really matters.