Ugh, I hate that little nickname- the ‘Antis’. We’re just against everything aren’t we.
Hello there, SJW and Anti-SJW alike. This is an open letter to ‘both groups’. I saw both groups because SJWs and Anti-SJWs aren’t the same. They cluster in divided groups which acknowledge their ‘brother’ or ‘sister’ sub-groups sometimes, but mostly do their own things and sometimes do some intragroup debating.
Anyway, let’s get on with the letter.
Dear SJWs and Antis,
Before you are a classical liberal, or a conservative… Before you’re an intersectional feminist or a radical feminist- you are an individual. You have your own perception of the world. You have your own experiences with the world. You hold your own set of beliefs and morals that make you YOU- an individual.
You may be thinking ‘Duh, Peanut, of course I’m an individual.’ In fact, I’m almost sure you’re thinking that. It is an undeniable fact that you are indeed unique.
But sometimes, it can be easy to forget about your beliefs and morals. It’s easy to get swept up in the flow of your group – your community that may give you a huge part of your identity! – and abandon your individuality.
There are other times you want to share an opinion or a fact but you fear it’s too SJW-y or too offensive. Maybe the topic makes you emotional. Maybe you’re a white cis straight man. (gotta throw in the white cis straight men when talking about feminism- they are the main stars of the show after all). Your view may differ from the mainstream view in your group, but don’t let that deter you from speaking what you belief to be the truth. Good ideas help us to progress as a society and spreading them for the benefit of all humanity, is a really cool thing to do.
HOWEVER. Note that I’m not saying you must speak out. As expected, if you step out of line, the community will punish you, socially (and maybe in other ways if it’s a crazy enough group). They will rant at you. They will rave at you. Then will call you nasty names and bestow labels on you that you don’t claim- a bigot, a Nazi sympathiser, an authoritarian, a special snowflake. So I won’t tell people they have to. I’m a big believer in freedom, and a person must be ready and willing, and know how to deal with the consequences- even if that’s knowing how to ignore them.
Now let’s move away from our own ideas, and move onto our group’s ideas. Groups often have certain ideas and opinions on things. Sometimes you share them. Sometimes you don’t. Sometimes, you share ideas from ‘the enemy’. It’s bound to happen. We are not monoliths in our groups. We are individuals – we don’t all think the same.
The problem lies in ignoring our own beliefs and morals, and adopting the group’s ideas that you do not agree with. It could be to avoid social punishment, but it could be because you’re getting swept up in the ‘heat of the battle’. You want your group to win and not your ideas. When we focus on ‘pwning’ the other side, we ignore the flaws in our ideas. We contradict ourselves. We become the monster we are so desperately trying to defeat.
There’s also the risk of adopting views and ideas from the radicals on your side (and I don’t mean ‘radical’ as in ‘radical feminist’). On the SJW side, you will definitely find racists (unless you think it’s impossible to be racist to white people then I guess they’re just plain and simple ASSHOLES just without the racist label), sexists (to men), and all kind of crazies and evil people who just want to hurt others or gain power, money or influence. But let’s not leave out the Antis shall we? It is clear that white supremacists and LITERAL NAZIS identify as Anti-SJW.
Let me give an example – Islam and Muslims:
In a time where we are so hyperaware of Islamic terrorism (or terrorism done in the name of Islam) it can be easy to come to hate the ideology of Islam. It’s an ideology- a set of ideas. Hating Islam won’t hurt it- you cannot hurt a set of ideas. Now when you expose people who hate the ideology, with literal racists (because a lot of the time, it is about race) and islamophobes (a poorly thought out word because it’s meant to describe an irrational fear and hatred of Muslims and NOT Islam), these people can sometimes come to hate Muslims (and even brown people!), despite the object of their hatred being ideas and not people.
The same thing with conflating black SJWs and their bullshit to black people as a whole.
It also works with the patriarchy (a system) and all men. (Though, I’ll admit, as I’m not a feminist, I don’t know much about patriarchy theory)
This has been a fairly long post, and I think I got across what I wanted to say (type) so, to sum up, here’s a little tl;dr (I don’t judge): don’t let your group strip you of your individuality. It’s okay to change and mould your beliefs according to new information you receive, but make sure you truly believe them, and that it isn’t just group’s views obscuring your own.
Thanks for reading. I hope this post was useful for both SJWs and Antis as it can happen to all of us.
See ya next week.