Blog: Glimmers in the Eyes

Glimmers in the Eyes
Glimmers in the Eyes
Date: 2018-Sep-15 03:47:28 EST

I've been having a weird health issue turn up more often - hoping it never gets too frequent. The weird shaped afterimages one gets from scrunching one's eyes too hard - I've been getting them occasionally randomly for awhile, making it a bit hard to read things. It feels like maybe I stared at something too bright for too long, or something like that. Possible this relates to a weird non-migraine headache I'm having right now that I've occasionally gotten before - may correlate. This headache is easy to miss because compared to a migraine it doesn't hurt that much. Will have to keep an eye out for this correlation in the future.

Recently someone I follow on social media - much more into the "social justice" camp than I am, was devastated that someone he looks up to (another "social justice" sort) saw one of his posts and blocked him. It bothers me that he seems to assume that he legitimately did something wrong and needs to improve. A long time ago I largely cut myself off from most impact of criticism by others, particularly activists; I decided that the definitions and the estimations that others have (of me and otherwise) are theirs, mine are mine, and they don't need to have anything to do with each other. For practically everybody, were they to offer harsh criticism, it wouldn't bother me much unless their estimation implies some other kind of impact might come (e.g. they won't want to work with me on a project), and any bother would likely come from that. It probably helps me maintain this that I pretty much hate activist-style thinking and find it easy to discount people who do it, but it is more broad. I know that all sorts of terms, from privilege to all sorts of isms or phobias, are very definition-heavy, and even when I agree that something fits in the bounds of one of these, I'm also not going to accept that it's always wrong to be for all such words that can get that suffix. And so I've pre-defused a lot of things that might otherwise bug me. I recommend this to others - it's a lot less stressful than what I remember it was like before.

Been thinking a bit on felony disenfranchisement - I think of it much like I do the death penalty - I am entirely okay with it in theory, but there are too many things that need fixing with our current system for it to work fairly and until they're fixed, I can't approve of it in practice. At least not broadly. The main beef I have with it is that the definition of a felony doesn't line up well with crimes that should be considered serious enough to disenfranchise, and I accept the secondary argument that selective restoration (based on personal convictions of judges acting with little guidance or oversight) is a very dangerous tool. This issue was brought to mind by a recent Jon Oliver segment on it.

Been rereading the Darksword series. It still feels juvenile, but I'm also still enjoying it.

Recently came to realise that one of the perspective-defining ideas I've been chewing on for awhile - "it's okay to be from somewhere", might be seen as a moderate stance between two extremes:

  • That when we visit another culture we should learn a lot about its norms/taboos and try to fit in
  • That when we visit another culture we should be careful not to do so in order to avoid appropriation
It's not exactly that simple in that at least some people who are concerned about appropriation mainly are concerned about some kind of inappropriate use - for example visiting another nation and dressing as one of their peons might be okay but dressing up as a tribal leader would be inappropriate because that rank was not earned. And there are all sorts of other possible ideas in this space too. Still, I had not recalled that second argument until now and it's interesting to see that perspective shifted a bit.