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Author Topic: The power of words  (Read 5474 times)

SunflowerP

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Re: The power of words
« Reply #30 on: February 13, 2013, 11:17:59 pm »
Quote from: Fireof9;96250
Fair enough - though I was of the understanding thats why we use the quote function here at TC - so we know whom the poster is responding too. Since Jacks post was quoting me I of course think he is responding to me. Because of that I am left to think that the statement was that I don't think people should ever apologize for things they say. I wanted to clear that up. If I misread Jacks post and it was simply making a point I apologize. If it is the case however I am just as confused because I don't understand then where the very animated point about apologies came from.

 
We insist on using quoting to hold the conversation together.  It is NOT intended to supersede generic yous by rendering them automatically specific.

Since that's a statement about TC's policies, I'll put my hat on for it.

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SunflowerP

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Re: The power of words
« Reply #31 on: February 13, 2013, 11:36:11 pm »
Quote from: Fireof9;96253
Point well made, and taken.  Now let me explain. I had just finished reading a thread where it had been mentioned that using the labels of he/she is offensive. So I went on a internet search and an hour and a half later that is what I came up with as being the best possible approach. In hindsight maybe just using "they" would have been better, but as you mentioned I view that as a plural when indeed a big part of that overall post was to directly point out a singular person. As to how hard I tried...... I don't know Sunflower, as I said I spent an hour and a half searching on what I could actually use to not leave anyone out. Apparently I failed and possibly I should simply either quit trying to communicate or simply quit caring if I exclude or offend someone. Seems that here on TC the former might be the better choice.

 
An hour and a half of searching, and you decided that gender-normative people get to be identified with binary pronouns, but gender-non-normative ones don't?  No, I don't think you did take my point.

Which thread was it that started this line of thought?

Honestly, you think your choices for not offending Cauldronites when posting on TC are either a) spend ninety minutes searching elsewhere, or b) give up trying and not care?  Really?  What the hell is wrong with ASKING US?:  "I saw this thread (link) in which it was said that he/she is a problem, but it didn't say what to use instead.  Can anyone tell me?"

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SunflowerP

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Re: The power of words
« Reply #32 on: February 14, 2013, 12:00:45 am »
Quote from: Snowdrop;96260
A lot of people use ze / zir as an all-gender pronoun.  Although pronouns probably are one of the most difficult things: for instance, I have known some people to use only ze so they can be sure that they won't use the wrong pronouns for anyone.  On the other hand, for a variety of reasons, I would feel hurt about being referred to by anything other than feminine pronouns.  To say pronouns are a complicated issue would be a huge understatement.

 
Are you saying that you'd be hurt by a generic third-person singular that didn't explicitly include feminine pronouns (so that a generic "she" is fine, as is a slash-portmanteau of "he/she/ze", but "they" would be as unacceptable to you as generic "he")?  Or are you conflating the problem of the generic third-person singular, with the matter of what pronouns are used for you personally?

Because these are two distinct issues.  Naturally enough, when you-in-particular are being referred to, you want your personal pronoun preferences to be respected.  But that's a somewhat different can of worms than what pronoun(s) are best applied to a singular indeterminate person (f'ex, "the reader of this post").

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Snowdrop

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Re: The power of words
« Reply #33 on: February 14, 2013, 12:25:21 am »
Quote from: SunflowerP;96266
Are you saying that you'd be hurt by a generic third-person singular that didn't explicitly include feminine pronouns (so that a generic "she" is fine, as is a slash-portmanteau of "he/she/ze", but "they" would be as unacceptable to you as generic "he")?  Or are you conflating the problem of the generic third-person singular, with the matter of what pronouns are used for you personally?

Because these are two distinct issues.  Naturally enough, when you-in-particular are being referred to, you want your personal pronoun preferences to be respected.  But that's a somewhat different can of worms than what pronoun(s) are best applied to a singular indeterminate person (f'ex, "the reader of this post").

Sunflower

 
"They" isn't at all an issue to me.  I find "ze" specifically uncomfortable because, while I realize it can also refer to male or female people, the circumstance I have most commonly heard it in is that of referring to genderqueer people.  It makes me uncomfortable because I'm to some extent genderqueer, but I really, really don't want to be.  

(For clarity ---
I present very much as female, and always have.  
I want to be regarded --- by other people and myself --- as female.
But I don't actually regard myself as female; I feel like I'm "actually" genderless, and have an inexplicable paranoia that random people I meet will think I'm male.  This makes me very unhappy.)

But yes, I was talking about me in particular: I don't really care what pronoun I as the general reader am referred to.  But I am really sensitive that I as the particular individual not be referred to with an ambiguous pronoun, even though I understand that that's a mistake people could make specifically while trying to be sensitive.

Fireof9

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Re: The power of words
« Reply #34 on: February 14, 2013, 12:39:25 am »
Quote from: SunflowerP;96263
An hour and a half of searching, and you decided that gender-normative people get to be identified with binary pronouns, but gender-non-normative ones don't?  No, I don't think you did take my point.

Which thread was it that started this line of thought?

Honestly, you think your choices for not offending Cauldronites when posting on TC are either a) spend ninety minutes searching elsewhere, or b) give up trying and not care?  Really?  What the hell is wrong with ASKING US?:  "I saw this thread (link) in which it was said that he/she is a problem, but it didn't say what to use instead.  Can anyone tell me?"

Sunflower

 
Yes exactly. That is what I thought. I will be nice to the people that identify as gender normative and an ass to those that don't. Really? Thats what you get out of it?

I did not start a thread here because I thought it would turn into a shit storm and be taken the wrong way. So yes I searched around, but in the end I went with the labels I have most seen used HERE at the Cauldron. I should have just used the word person. This argument is a prime example of what I am talking about. You pointed out how I did it wrong. I agreed with every one of your points but told you what I was trying to do, what my method of trying to do that was and I believe admitted that in the end it did not turn out the way I meant it too. Hence I said to you - point taken. So obviously in the future I would take a different approach. The gender related terms are something that has not been a part of my world for almost 20 years, and the labels etc have changed a lot since I last was involved in any conversation that demanded a sensitivity to the terminology. So forgive me for getting it wrong, but I did that in the utmost desire to give a shit. It seems obvious that you have already decided that is not the case, so be it I guess, my lesson learned in many ways.
Really?  So, hey, want to go fishing?  I\'ve got a telescope, and it\'s going to be a dark night, so we should see the fish really well.
...what, I\'m not talking about fishing?  That\'s stargazing?  It\'s all doing-stuff, so it\'s the same thing, right?
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SunflowerP

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Re: The power of words
« Reply #35 on: February 14, 2013, 12:54:46 am »
Quote from: Snowdrop;96270
"They" isn't at all an issue to me.  I find "ze" specifically uncomfortable because, while I realize it can also refer to male or female people, the circumstance I have most commonly heard it in is that of referring to genderqueer people.  It makes me uncomfortable because I'm to some extent genderqueer, but I really, really don't want to be.  

(For clarity ---
I present very much as female, and always have.  
I want to be regarded --- by other people and myself --- as female.
But I don't actually regard myself as female; I feel like I'm "actually" genderless, and have an inexplicable paranoia that random people I meet will think I'm male.  This makes me very unhappy.)

But yes, I was talking about me in particular: I don't really care what pronoun I as the general reader am referred to.  But I am really sensitive that I as the particular individual not be referred to with an ambiguous pronoun, even though I understand that that's a mistake people could make specifically while trying to be sensitive.

 
Okay - in that case, it's probably especially clear to you why I was checking!  (And, I hope you find better personal resolution than you currently have.)

I do feel very strongly that everyone should have their personal pronoun preferences respected.  That's one of the reasons I so strongly favor the use of "they" for indeterminate third-person nongendered singular - it has such a long history of being used to make no assumptions about what gender any given instance of "the reader" (etc) might have.  Constructed and revived pronouns tend to be nonbinary in their connotations, rather than nongendered.

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Re: The power of words
« Reply #36 on: February 14, 2013, 01:07:24 am »
Quote from: SunflowerP;96274
Okay - in that case, it's probably especially clear to you why I was checking!  (And, I hope you find better personal resolution than you currently have.)

I do feel very strongly that everyone should have their personal pronoun preferences respected.  That's one of the reasons I so strongly favor the use of "they" for indeterminate third-person nongendered singular - it has such a long history of being used to make no assumptions about what gender any given instance of "the reader" (etc) might have.  Constructed and revived pronouns tend to be nonbinary in their connotations, rather than nongendered.

Sunflower

 
Yeah, I like "they" too.  

I've met some people who use ze to refer to everyone, and I know that they're doing it in an attempt to be helpful, but . . .  If you're referring to a particular person and know their gender, it's almost certainly best to use the best-fit pronoun.

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Re: The power of words
« Reply #37 on: February 14, 2013, 01:27:10 am »
Quote from: Fireof9;96272
Yes exactly. That is what I thought. I will be nice to the people that identify as gender normative and an ass to those that don't. Really? Thats what you get out of it?

I did not start a thread here because I thought it would turn into a shit storm and be taken the wrong way. So yes I searched around, but in the end I went with the labels I have most seen used HERE at the Cauldron. I should have just used the word person. This argument is a prime example of what I am talking about. You pointed out how I did it wrong. I agreed with every one of your points but told you what I was trying to do, what my method of trying to do that was and I believe admitted that in the end it did not turn out the way I meant it too. Hence I said to you - point taken. So obviously in the future I would take a different approach. The gender related terms are something that has not been a part of my world for almost 20 years, and the labels etc have changed a lot since I last was involved in any conversation that demanded a sensitivity to the terminology. So forgive me for getting it wrong, but I did that in the utmost desire to give a shit. It seems obvious that you have already decided that is not the case, so be it I guess, my lesson learned in many ways.

 
No, what I get is that you tried to be polite, but that it involved looking for any way to do it, not actually thinking.  Yes, there are people on TC who ID as genderqueer; I'm one of them.  But I guarantee that you have not seen any one of us use "genderqueer" as a pronoun.

So while you asked yourself, "how do I take this into account?" you didn't think, "hey, 'he' and 'she' are pronouns; what pronouns do those who ID as genderqueer prefer?"

See, I'm not asking you to somehow be sensitive and know this stuff automatically.  I know you don't.  And I do - honestly - appreciate the part of this that is good faith.  But there's a part that isn't - you posted asking people to cut slack for your ignorance, but you're arguing against everything they're presenting to help you rectify that ignorance.  That implies that you don't want to actually become less ignorant, you just want to have slack cut.

Do I think that's what you're consciously thinking?  No, I don't, because you've been on TC for quite a long time now, and you're not usually a jackwagon on purpose.  But it's what you're doing, consciously or not.

I had a link in mind to throw in, at the beginning of the convo - well, I had a couple of links in mind, but Jack beat me to the others.  This is one of my favorites, for those instances in which I'm an ally to oppressed/marginalized folks, rather than experiencing that particular axis of oppression/marginalization myself.  Y'see, because I don't have the experience, it means that inevitably, sooner or later, I will get something wrong, out of ignorance - so here are instructions on How To Fuck Up.

If you try to make it all about doing it perfectly, so you never, ever step on toes or get called on stuff - no wonder it seems Too Hard, because you're asking yourself to be inhumanly perfect.  It's actually an awful lot like paganism, and avoiding fluffiness - one might get challenged for info that's factually incorrect, or for one's UPG that contradicts known information, but to be challenged for it is not a condemnation; what makes a fluffy bunny is wilful ignorance, refusing to accept that there's a gap between your stuff and fact.

Sunflower
I'm the AntiFa genderqueer commie eclectic wiccan Mod your alt-right bros warned you about.
I do so have a life; I just live part of it online!
“Selfishness is not living as one wishes to live, it is asking others to live as one wishes to live.” - Oscar Wilde
"Nobody's good at anything until they practice." - Brina (Yewberry)
My much-neglected blog "If You Ain't Makin' Waves, You Ain't Kickin' Hard Enough"

Chabas

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Re: The power of words
« Reply #38 on: February 14, 2013, 01:57:05 am »
Quote from: Fireof9;96253
Point well made, and taken.  Now let me explain. I had just finished reading a thread where it had been mentioned that using the labels of he/she is offensive. So I went on a internet search and an hour and a half later that is what I came up with as being the best possible approach.

 
...what in the world did you search for? I'll point out that not only does either "genderneutral pronouns" or "genderqueer pronouns" lead Google to give you the relevant pronouns several times within the first handful of hits, but even just "genderqueer" immediately leads to the wiki entry, which, after the generic intro, STARTS with preferred pronouns for genderqueer people.

--Chabas

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The power of words
« Reply #39 on: February 14, 2013, 02:21:18 am »
Quote from: SunflowerP;96280
I had a link in mind to throw in, at the beginning of the convo - well, I had a couple of links in mind, but Jack beat me to the others.  This is one of my favorites, for those instances in which I'm an ally to oppressed/marginalized folks, rather than experiencing that particular axis of oppression/marginalization myself.  Y'see, because I don't have the experience, it means that inevitably, sooner or later, I will get something wrong, out of ignorance - so here are instructions on How To Fuck Up.

I love that. So much. Am sitting here thinking about how much better the world would be if we all gave back the time that we've wasted for someone by arguing with them over some of this, for a start.
"We're all stories, in the end. Make it a good one, eh?"
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Re: The power of words
« Reply #40 on: February 14, 2013, 08:41:13 am »
Quote from: Snowdrop;96276
I've met some people who use ze to refer to everyone, and I know that they're doing it in an attempt to be helpful, but . . .  If you're referring to a particular person and know their gender, it's almost certainly best to use the best-fit pronoun.

 
This genderqueer person is happy enough with 'he', 'she', and 'they', and is misgendered by 'zie' and other constructed pronouns.  Your 'some people' may have helpful intent, but, well, as noted before intent doesn't change effect.
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Re: The power of words
« Reply #41 on: February 14, 2013, 08:42:53 am »
Quote from: Fireof9;96272


 
Okay -  I think you're reading into Sunflower's posts an ire I just don't see.  I'm MASSIVELY confused.

You: I'm trying to do it right, I've spent ages trying to figure this stuff out, and I'm still massively confused.

Her: Yeah, but that method really doesn't work, have you considered X?  And why that doesn't work?  Oh, and yeah, we all fuck up, ever consider just asking?

You: Oh so I should just give up?  FUCK THIS SHIT.

.... am I misreading you?  Her?  everything?  what's going on?

Fireof9

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Re: The power of words
« Reply #42 on: February 14, 2013, 10:06:05 am »
Quote from: HeartShadow;96302
Okay -  I think you're reading into Sunflower's posts an ire I just don't see.  I'm MASSIVELY confused.

You: I'm trying to do it right, I've spent ages trying to figure this stuff out, and I'm still massively confused.

Her: Yeah, but that method really doesn't work, have you considered X?  And why that doesn't work?  Oh, and yeah, we all fuck up, ever consider just asking?

You: Oh so I should just give up?  FUCK THIS SHIT.

.... am I misreading you?  Her?  everything?  what's going on?

 
Kind of but missing a couple steps

Her - you did it wrong but you meant well
Me- yeah probably, this is why I did it as I did
Her - this how you did it wrong you did not really try
me - point taken, but I did try, flawed technique but I did try
her - you are an idiot
me - likely so maybe I should stfu

Listen when I said I am failing at communicating and maybe I should stop I meant it. Its not a "Oh tC peeps are mean I am running away". Simply my head is in a fucked up place and I am thinking more with emotion than logic. My 19 year old son ran away to live with a crackhead for the 2nd time in 3 years and I am here trying to hold it together for my wife who is as deep in depression as I have ever seen in my life, a 7 and 5 year old that are convinced their brother hates them. So I should simply not be posting. period. I am not getting across what I mean in any way shape or form, and probably taking other things out of context.
Really?  So, hey, want to go fishing?  I\'ve got a telescope, and it\'s going to be a dark night, so we should see the fish really well.
...what, I\'m not talking about fishing?  That\'s stargazing?  It\'s all doing-stuff, so it\'s the same thing, right?
-HeartShadow
 
Yesterday is history, Tomorrow is a mystery,Today is a gift,thats why the call it the present - Master Oogway

Finding the Owl -my blog
The Gwyddonic Order

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Re: The power of words
« Reply #43 on: February 14, 2013, 02:53:29 pm »
Quote from: Fireof9;96310
Kind of but missing a couple steps

Her - you did it wrong but you meant well
Me- yeah probably, this is why I did it as I did
Her - this how you did it wrong you did not really try
me - point taken, but I did try, flawed technique but I did try
her - you are an idiot
me - likely so maybe I should stfu

Listen when I said I am failing at communicating and maybe I should stop I meant it. Its not a "Oh tC peeps are mean I am running away". Simply my head is in a fucked up place and I am thinking more with emotion than logic. My 19 year old son ran away to live with a crackhead for the 2nd time in 3 years and I am here trying to hold it together for my wife who is as deep in depression as I have ever seen in my life, a 7 and 5 year old that are convinced their brother hates them. So I should simply not be posting. period. I am not getting across what I mean in any way shape or form, and probably taking other things out of context.

 
I'm really sorry you're having those problems at home.  That sounds like a mess.

But I DO think you're reading things into posts that just aren't there.  Take a step back - real life is far more important.  And good luck.

Fireof9

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Re: The power of words
« Reply #44 on: February 14, 2013, 06:20:04 pm »
Quote from: HeartShadow;96331
I'm really sorry you're having those problems at home.  That sounds like a mess.

But I DO think you're reading things into posts that just aren't there.  Take a step back - real life is far more important.  And good luck.


You are likely right.

Apologies to Sunflower for the misunderstanding.
Really?  So, hey, want to go fishing?  I\'ve got a telescope, and it\'s going to be a dark night, so we should see the fish really well.
...what, I\'m not talking about fishing?  That\'s stargazing?  It\'s all doing-stuff, so it\'s the same thing, right?
-HeartShadow
 
Yesterday is history, Tomorrow is a mystery,Today is a gift,thats why the call it the present - Master Oogway

Finding the Owl -my blog
The Gwyddonic Order

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