2013-01-19

We're all pissy people

ACHTUNG! This ejaculation is about a sense of emotional entitlement, in mobs, in social activists, in criminals, in Americans, in Malaysians, etc.. And if you don't like the thought of false abstractions being drawn over human beings in general, particularly with regards to their personalities, psyches, and emotional lives, it may be in our mutual interest that you do not proceed with reading this. (All abstractions, are naturally false.) I seem to get suspended from Twitter often enough, for talking about these things there, directly to the perpetrators.

I just spent a couple of hours analysing a problem, shopping for parts, digging out wallplugs badly implemented in my bathroom, and hacking my "showerhead holder," back into its rightful place, on the wall. Totally worth it.

What totally wasn't worth it, was undoing and redoing the work of guys I paid USD 465*
* that's 14 weeks of groceries, on my watch -_-
to, just three weeks ago, to fix up my roof and plumbing. I also had to finally caulk the roof myself. At least, half their work was clean. What can I say? I was in a rush to move into this flat, and it has been my first realestate refurbishment project. I should have haggled with the contractor on price, and then paid only a partial amount upon initial completion of the job. But as he too said, it is good for a young person to learn.

The showerhead holder was of course a rather boring problem to solve. While I was working on it, "ADHD multicore me," was thinking about social dynamics that had been highlighted to my attention over these past weeks. Most of my social interaction these days is via Twitter, as I am studying alone in a small town, on a low budget. In the past few weeks, certain high points of negative emotional engagement **
** "the butthurt," as a brogrammer acquaintance of mine might put it
in the folks I follow have been:
  • a woman was leered at by a security guard, and she went on a tirade against leery men, to the point of expressing the thought that leering was a social ill, symptom of gang rapists, such that leering at women, by men, should be quashed (no word however, on any structured, ethically or legally feasible, method for doing so)
  • Malaysia's general elections are coming up in a few weeks, and so the past months have been extra-full of our normal racial politics, accusations of insult, demands for apologies, threats of violent madness, etc.
  • rape, has taken the world by storm, thanks (and I do mean thanks, albeit in a sad way) to that incident involving a busload of monsters in India; and a few weeks ago, TwitterJaya, portmanteau for the Malaysian Twitter community, was abuzz with a hashtag which translates to #tipsToAvoidBeingRaped, and the classically horrific reaction from each of various parties, along their respective vectors
All this brings me back to the brief time I spent in the United States pursuing my bachelor's degree. I was at Bates College, a school that valued egalitarianism above many other values. There, as such, civil rights and x-ist "butthurt," were popular topics within, and without, the classroom. I spent most of my time outside the classroom trying to figure out the history and rationale for the AAC&U's (or rather, its members') contemporary implementation of the so-called "liberal arts," and frequently found myself musing about how much of the Culture Wars remained. It was always in my mind that the US and Malaysia shared many cultural parallels, themes of race, and domination, liberty, etc.

From there my thoughts went again to remembrance of the phrase "amok," a "Malay," word, invented by the people of this archipelago, and adopted at some point into the British lexicon. We invented amok. Our politics, during the Mahathirism that I grew up with, was rhetoricised on the notion of a people going amok. Amok was the name of our boogeyman. "Piss someone off? Pay the price - it's not their fault, they're out of control."

Of course, we often see the same dumbass pattern popping up in the discourse on rapists, today, as it ever has. "Didn't dress up? Pay the price - it's not their fault, they're out of control." While screwing the damn shower into place, I was just struck briefly by the analogy of the pattern - it's the same damn argument. And you know what: that pattern is found in those people who want to regulate how people look at each other, too. I'm putting anti-leerists into the same paragraph as rape-is-justified-by-our-urges rhetoricians, just to underscore this point. There's no immediate reason for anyone to stop leering at anyone else, just because the leerees (or, "leered-ats,") feel violated at the moment of being leered at. Stop such nonsensical attempt to regulate the act of looking at someone, with squinty eyes or whatever, right, damn, now. The only thing that differentiates criminals from non-criminals, is by what people actually end up doing. That, is the law.

*** "It's a failure of your individual character."
*** That is the proposition I want to make. If you feel that people should tip-toe around you, just because of your feelings, I really do want you to go and drown yourself. Though, I do understand that you probably won't, and I certainly won't do it for you, so perhaps you will be creative enough to go do something else, like think about this and come back with something interesting to say. Of course, I'm not expecting you to. Growing up where I did, I don't expect that people will change their ways just to make my life easier. I don't expect people to become good citizens. I don't expect people to be kind. Of course, it is nice when they are, but often enough, one can't even get a self-righteous dimwit to stop harping on their feelings of being insulted, and to actually come up with a fungible plan of action to fix themselves, and the world around them.

Folks are only angry towards others, when they fear that they will lose some part themselves. Resist emotional dependency. Merely be.

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