Submitted by Bezotcovschina in discussion

From an anti-authoritarian standpoint we always engage in critique of established hierarchical models. Sometimes, depending on a method, this critique might be perceived as hurting someone's feelings (religious and not). Sometimes it can even looks like purposefully being an asshole.

I want to discuss, when it is acceptable to hurt someone's feelings? I suppose, the easiest answer "punch up, not down" applies here. But, the truth is "up" and "down" are very subjective things. It may lead to classical tankie's response "don't criticize China from your imperial core". Could it be extrapolated to "don't draw caricatures to the Prophet from France"?

There, probably no clear answers and guidelines how to always punch "up" without collateral damage to "down", but, anyway, I would appreciate your opinions in comments.



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existential1 wrote

Social logic, morality, and anti-authoritarianism do not have parallel tracks. They collide in many places. So in those cases, you just have to choose which is more important to you and act according to that lens. There is no objective "right" or "wrong".


ruin wrote

While I don’t think being willfully hurtful or malicious towards another individual is generally beneficial when trying to frame a persuasive argument, I think being ruthless and dispassionate in critique is only fair play.

If one’s goal is to lay bare the ugly underpinnings of a society/religion/ideology/hierarchy that they oppose, it’s only natural for those adherents and beneficiaries of such orders to have hurt feelings. Some of these individuals may even classify as marginalized in the case of patriotism or religion but I’d say fuck em all.

Unfortunately to your question I don’t think there is a clean way to delineate what is or isn’t acceptable. Objectivity is a myth best left to moralists. These questions can only be answered by the individual according to circumstance.

I agree with the above regarding Charlie Hebdo. Censorship is bullshit and so is racism.


Hibiscus_Syrup wrote

There's that general saying, "When you are accustomed to privilege, moves towards equality feel like oppression." - and those feelings are illegitimate from an anti-authoritarian lens. Not just illegitimate but they make up part of the network of power that reinforces that privilege.

Similarly, abusers will often claim that their feelings have been hurt if they don't have total control over a situation, when the person receiving abuse tries to claim autonomy for theirself.

I think it's generally fine to hurt feelings in those cases, and makes sense where you've pragmatically decided it might be helpful to your overall goals.


thelegendarybirdmonster wrote (edited )

"your freedom stops where another's begins" is kinda objective imo.

Banning the drawing of religious figures is imposing religious beliefs on other people. Even if it's bad taste to draw the prophet or whatever, i believe people should be able to do it.

I do not support Charlie Hebdo's drawing because it came with the context of them also being racist and the drawing being camouflaged racism afaik. I don't have a problem with the teacher using it in a meta discussion.


thelegendarybirdmonster wrote

As long as muslims thrive to follow rules from 700 years ago literally, they'll be in conflict with the rest of the world.

Their prophet basically ordered them to not do idolatry, and they still managed to misunderstand to the higest degree. At this point they're doing some sort of weird reverse-idolatry. It's infuriating.


train wrote

I think discussing Islam and saying that Muslims thrive to follow 700 year old rules is innacurate.

For one Islam like all other major religions and spiritualities is not monolithic. Various sects of Islam are very far removed from their historical origin. Furthermore even fundamentalists rarely conform to the religious practices of the past. Rather they contort history to fit their narrative.

Lastly none of this exists in a vaccume. So while religion often seeks to expand it's influence it can not do so without leveraging existing hierarchies and socioeconomic factors to it's advantage.

Ultimately that means I don't think Islam is a uniquely regressive religion. I also don't think it's the sole or even most influential factor behind conflicts where Islamic fundamentalism is involved.


thelegendarybirdmonster wrote (edited )

Suni islam is monolithic, about as monolithic as catholicism.The only reason catholicism is somewhat bearable is because of the reform and the arrival of protestantism, that forced them to modernize, in the 1500s. (christianism still sucks thought)

I do not condone following old rules or the quran, more than other religions. I do however condone following rules "litterally" without context or thinking. Eg: creationism, believing in scientifically false biology, dressing and shaving in certain ways for traditional reasons.

I knew a girl who wouldn't use vinegar because it was made from alcohol ffs.

These example povs aren't shared by every muslim, as islam is a very "compromising" religion. But as long as progressive and backward muslims share the same flag, the only way to make the difference is by talking to each person individually . Suni need their protestant reform.


train wrote

Hmm I disagree that Christianity is all too dismilar. For one thing many Protestant sects do and did not ever represent any sort of progressive reform. I also think Catholics have increasingly abided by enlightenment values only in response to an improvement of the material conditions in the western world. There are still plenty of regressive and fundamentalist Christian sects that deserve scrutiny including some within Catholicism.

Honestly appeals to tradition and anti rationalist beliefs systems are incredibly common even among athiests. New athiests in particular tend to embrace xenophobic and adversarial tendencies that are innefective at countering religious fundamentalism.

In essence, I don't disagree that Islam is problematic. However, I just don't think it's uniquely problematic and as such Muslims don't deserve unique scrutiny. I also really disagree with the idea that using authority and the state to confront fundamentalist tendencies will do anything other than entrench religious fundamentalism. Yet that's exactly what many western states, France in particular, are trying to do.


thelegendarybirdmonster wrote

The translation of the bible into the language that people speak was one of the key changes protestant brought that catholics had to incorporate into their dogma. There were a few other that i forgot about.

Catholicism is more static by nature because they receive gods word through the bible and the pope/priest but also through tradition and history. On the contrary protestants are meant to talk to god only through the bible and prayers, and interpret it themselves. That's why almost all Christian sects are protestant, and also why there's a protestant sect for every belief. There are regionalism in Catholicism due to the difference in personally of the local priesthood.

I agree with your other paragraphs :)


NnN wrote

It depends on what you mean by monolithic. One can argue that Sunni Islam is quite manifold. It has various juristic and creedal schools. Also one can argue that Sunni Islam had their protestant reformation with the so called Wahabi/Salafi Movement.


MHC wrote

Demanding a right to not be offended--is giving oneself dictatorial powers!