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jadedctrl wrote (edited )

No, the logic's more like:
“This person seems to have an understanding of oppression & privilege that's mostly seen in cis & non-POC people, so they're probably some white guy.”


anarchist_critic OP wrote

Yeah, that's known as "question begging". Not seeing the problem from your point of view = not understanding the problem = being wrong. It's not big, it's not clever and anyone can do it.

This stuff does not stem from positionality. I've met white people who are raving idpols and black people who are conservative as fuck. I've met black people who think that Illuminati and Zionists run the world, Latino Maoists who hate idpol with a vengeance, Romanian women with the most conservative gender values imaginable. One of the things which turned me off idpol was working with some multiracial working-class kids and realising how absolutely fucking unaware they all were of all the shit that idpols take as matters of positionality, and how all these middle-class college kids and upwardly mobile politicos were speaking for these people without representing them in the slightest.

I have read hundreds of books and articles about all manner of oppressions and so I have a much more panoramic view than anyone coming from a particular point of view who only sees their local situation, usually through a naive common-sense lens with little theoretical sophistication. For instance, I can say to your POC perspective (if you're a POC) - have you considered the position of people in Nigeria or Burundi or the Solomon Islands when you announce what a POC does or does not experience? Because whatever you claim, I can show you POCs who believe the opposite, and POCs who have won political struggles by believing the opposite - the field is really that diverse. I also come from an oppressed positionality recognised by idpols, but I refuse to go into details because I've learnt that it gives bullies ammunition to trigger me if I do (by getting into oppression olympics, denying that I'm an X or that being an X matters, etc). Seriously - I have suffered far more aggression towards my positionality from idpols than from anyone else I've spoken to, more hatred against me than I've ever received from leftists or post-leftists or ancaps or liberals or Marxists or social-democrats or even conservatives (granted I don't talk much to actual Nazis so probably the idpols aren't quite the worst). If I followed the idpol strategy then I'd also conclude that most of the world is X-ist and genocidal towards people like me, that I'm being constantly subject to microaggressions rooted in other people's privilege (it's true both that people say/do insensitive things and that others rarely understand my point of view without a lot of explaining), and end up hating everyone, including most of the people with the same positionality who have different politics from me. I've decided not to go that route because it makes no strategic sense and it's unfair to other people. I'm more interested in fighting the root causes and common enemies. You probably won't believe this because I'm not prepared to put my life story out here where you can abuse or doxx me, but there you go. I'm just in the same category as the historical peasant rebels who always either disguised the message or disguised themselves whenever they rebelled.

Also you're going to find yourself tied in knots if you follow this "X = white idea = wrong" logic, for the following reason. You are arguing that certain points of view can be dismissed because they come from a privileged standpoint and therefore are unable to see realities visible to other people. Suppose for sake of argument that black people are more likely to believe X and white people are more likely to believe not-X. You trust the black person's view because they're oppressed. But suppose white people do not accept that black people are oppressed or (if they are oppressed) that the X/not-X issue is part of their oppression. Suppose, even, that some white people start claiming that white people are actually oppressed and therefore, we are obliged to believe not-X. How are you going to prove that black people are really oppressed and white people are not really oppressed? You can either argue 1) that black people are oppressed because they say they're oppressed from their self-validating superior point of view, but this does nothing to resolve the dispute as this would also make the white people oppressed, or 2) you can invoke some kind of realist criterion of comparison whereby the status of being oppressed comes down to some kind of objective fact which can be understood by black people and white people. This seems to me the only way you can claim that black people are in fact oppressed, but it also requires you to reject the position of dismissing a point of view because it's "white", since you have to prove black people are oppressed by criteria which are not based on positionality.

I doubt this will stop you, because you're probably doing this for the enjoyment of being part of a righteous mob and taking out all your latent frustration on random people who aren't really any threat to you (kinda the same way the Nazis do). I'm taking away your junkie needle and you'll do anything to get it back because you're addicted to the rush it gives. So you'll come out with something like, "logic and facts are white" or "my issues are too urgent to stop and think whether my politics make any sense". Bad faith of course, but there you go.