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Diversity in Modern Society


#1065

Already built into both the design of the project and the ethos of our hospital (first children’s hospital in England to be rated as “Outstanding” doncha know) . Not our first rodeo. :slight_smile:

The focus of this project though is because we specifically know this group of kids and young people, and families, often don’t feel comfortable in even raising this issue in the first place. It aims to redress this particular balance, and sits alongside work we do locally, regionally and nationally to address both the overall difficulties with children’s health outcomes in the UK, as well as specific work with other, smaller groups who have their own specific issues. We’re already in discussion about expanding it in parallel with another project which is particularly aimed at supporting adolescents who find themselves in adult hospital wards (sadly not at all uncommon), as well as another piece of work looking at addressing gang-related violence in teenagers in our area. We know that there is a danger in trying to do much too quickly … but equally we know that when multiple projects address different facets of the same fundamental underlying issues, they gradually build together to form a common foundation with overlapping scope.

Small changes, change the climate, make more changes … and eventually we build something really worthwhile.


#1066

The All lives matter is a great example of the politics of segmentation backfiring. There shouldn’t have been a Black Lives Matter movement. It was bound for failure and resistance as soon as it became Black Lives Matter. The organizers needed to make it a All Lives Matter from the start, a subject that tackled police brutality in all forms across all communities. By introducing segmentation right away it created an acrimonious situation.

All Lives matter was used by some to derail the conversation, but it was used by others to simply expand and support the conversation. That expansion wasn’t welcomed by everyone because as you suggest it was seen as centering the concern around white men. And so the whole movement was weakened.

There’s an in-bedded resentment against white males in so many of these movements and conversations, but the same white people are part of the solution. White men is a huge group of people. The sickness and the cure can rest in the same group.

As soon as you tribalize anything you hurt your chances of working with other tribes. The art of getting shit done in life is working with others who aren’t exactly on the same page or place as you. Either the focus is on results, or instead it’s just about making a point.


#1067

Understandably so.

My point was, that I don’t think irritating those people further is the way to get through to them. And homophobia won’t go away fully until a way is found to get though to those who for some reason find it beyond themselves to understand or at the very least have empathy towards others of a different sexuality.

I don’t think this thread is the best way to discuss this, there’s a lot of stuff being misconstrued on both sides that wouldn’t be face to face. Also there’s a lot of filling in gaps and assumptions being made.

Again, I dont agree that people’s minds can’t be changed - I’ve had this discussion with the father of one of my wife’s friends and also an elderly friend of my grandfather’s, neither of whom were displaying any sort of reason for their homophobia other than it was just something they didn’t understand.
After a few hours I felt I got through to them both.

People come from different backgrounds, some folk just don’t get it and many of them don’t know any better. Hatred isn’t inherant, it usually comes from a place of fear or ignorance.


#1068

Which, to bring it back to where I came into this conversation, is why it matters when comedians use words like “faggot” as they make jokes whose only humour rests in the fact that someone is different to them.

I’ve lost track of who you’re disagreeing with to be honest but we seem to be in complete agreement on two fundamental principles - people can change (though it can be difficult) and education is at the core of changing attitudes. But it will take time. For my money, it’s why getting this - all of this - right in schools is the key.


#1069

I think these sum up my perspective better than I can.

James Baldwin

And Martin Luther King, Jr. from his Letter from Birmingham Jail

"First, I must confess that over the last few years I have been gravely disappointed with the white moderate. I have almost reached the regrettable conclusion that the Negro’s great stumbling block in the stride toward freedom is not the White Citizen’s Council-er or the Ku Klux Klanner, but the white moderate who is more devoted to “order” than to justice; who prefers a negative peace which is the absence of tension to a positive peace which is the presence of justice; who constantly says “I agree with you in the goal you seek, but I can’t agree with your methods of direct action;” who paternalistically feels he can set the timetable for another man’s freedom; who lives by the myth of time and who constantly advises the Negro to wait until a “more convenient season.”


#1070

There’s so much people can claim to be offended by. Some of it might just be bullshit.

With the gender thing I think it is possible a person is born in the “wrong body” and they may wish to refer to themselves as other than the gender of their biological sex. However the explosion of gender identities and those pronouns seems purely socially constructed, a bit like a subculture.


#1071

I’m not disagreeing with anyone specifically, I’m more looking at the points being made and the general conversation and not who is making them.

I’m sorry if it seems like I’m disagreeing with you, or anyone else, for the sake of it.

I think I’ll file this thread under the same category as the politics and news thread and stick to the comics stuff.
These subjects are better discussed over a pint rather than in text.


#1072

Depends on who you’re having that pint with:


#1073

Most of our identities are socially-constructed. National identity, race, culture, and gender (distinct from biological sex) for example. But the extent to which we value or devalue those identities is equally socially-constructed.


#1074

To be fair, I’m just as likely (if not moreso) to call someone an asshole during a conversation about comics as I am politics. :smile:


#1075

I think that’s where you and I have similarity in backgrounds. Los Angeles was one of the hot points of the Sixties, and the Summers of '64 and '65 were every bit as scary and violent as the “Summer of Love” - 1967. I’ve been in riots. I’ve been emergency medical during later riots (Rodney King) and so have seen “the other side” as it were. Saw Chicago go nuts during the Dems convention (when the Dems were acting badly and made a show of themselves). And so I’ve experience the slow cooling-down after such social events. You’re right, it’s folks having a picnic, or sharing music, or enjoying the same movie. It takes a bit of time (not that much, really) for folks to drop the agitation triggers and remember we’re all just humans being manipulated by a much larger system.

Can’t we all just get along? Oh, sure we can. Except for the folks who choose not to.


#1076

I can’t really choose my national identity though. I was born Dutch, and I don’t think I can sue anyone for discrimination for refusing to regard me as Japanese or according to my wishes.

Likewise identifying as pangender seems a rather absurd basis for forcing anyone to use a preferred pronoun.


#1077

I just meant that “Dutch” is a social construction in the same way “American” or “Canadian” are. And you can’t sue someone for refusing to regard you as Japanese, but then again, you also can’t sue someone for not recognizing your gender the vast majority of the time (and in the US many states still don’t recognize LGBTQ as a protected class under civil rights laws, meaning you legally can be discriminated against for your gender if it doesn’t conform with your biological sex).

And most of the time it’s not about forcing anyone, it’s about asking. I’ve never been able to force anyone to call me Matt rather than Matthew if they insist on doing so. And if someone says, “I prefer X pronouns” there’s no mechanism forcing people to use them outside of general civility.


#1078

Just to clarify my post, I do think there is a genuine psychological state of mind that corresponds with not identifying with the sex of birth. Thinking you are more comfortable as a woman rather than a man as you were born or thinking neither women or man apply and I could see it would be common courtesy to use a consensually agreed upon gender neutral pronoun. It’s the explosion of dozens of new gender identities and equally many pronouns that seems more like a cultural affectation though.


#1079

Folks who choose not to get along are like dogs that bite and growl. I think most children are immediately programmed to be social, helpful and kind. Enough people have said that hate is learned for it to be a truth. So in the same way a dog only bites and attacks because it’s trained that way (or not been trained) so too goes mankind.

Likewise I think we can agree that people can change their beliefs when encountered with something that challenges those beliefs. So like dogs, I think any person can quickly learn not to hate.

I agree with you it doesn’t take long to unlearn hate. Maybe just an afternoon or a random act of kindness. I think most people are good. I think both sides of any of these debates think they’re on the right side (only a few are doing it to be evil, and they’re probably abused in their own way and just lashing out - again like a dog). However, I think when both side demonize the other they’re effectively throwing stones at the dog, and you can’t really be surprised if that dog bites you.


#1080

The kid who kept trying to bully me - and he was so frustrated that he could not! - got to the point of his failed campaign that one day he actually came to my house and was going to do something to my dogs. Now, Tippy, a border collie, was the most pleasant pup in the world. Never even heard her growl. My dog, Rusty, was a whole different deal. Part terrier, part Dachshund and part Satan Himself. Roly-poly manic little guy would trot on up to anybody with a big ol’ doggy smile on his face and then maul them. This is apparently what happened. Billy came by and for no discernible reason reached over the fence for Rusty. He got lucky; he got most of his hand back. Not exactly intact. So, much like Draco Malfoy, he raised a tremendous hue and cry and the police arrived. They listened to the story. They arrested him for trespass. This is merely the tale of another in a long line of his failed attempts to bully me. Did that teach him a lesson? No. Some people are assholes.


#1081

I don’t think the vast majority of racists are just people who haven’t learned any better. Think about the lawyer who screamed at people in a NY restaurant for speaking Spanish, or the variety of people in the news recently for calling the police on black people who weren’t doing anything illegal. At least one of those callers was a college professor. I’m not saying it’s something inherent or biological, but it’s also not as simple as just learning not to hate.


#1082

This guy?

Fake apology then?


#1083

I honestly have no way of knowing. Personally, I don’t find it particularly convincing because it reads the same as every public apology in these situations, and it came after the fallout started to affect his livelihood. There’s also no explanation for his behavior in that moment if he isn’t racist, and found the diversity of New York one of its selling points. I might get impatient in line, be having a bad day, get obnoxiously drunk, but in all of those situations I’ve managed to not scream racist talking points at people.

But, yes, it’s entirely possible watching himself in that situation and seeing the reaction of others caused a genuine change of heart for him. I genuinely hope it did. But if anything, that’s part of the argument FOR talking about race and for shaming people who engage in this sort of behavior.


#1084

I don’t think this is true*. “They” used as a singular is late Middle English, “he” is Old English, “she” is Middle English. It’s a shame, as it would make a really convenient narrative for the “they” supporters, but unfortunately it seems to be fake news.

. * Unless there is new evidence more recent than my references, in which case I would be really interested to see it.