groselicain

Pervasiveness of Generalization
« on: January 11, 2021, 02:49:30 PM »
      Over the last few months, I've watched in horror as the Brewery has become a battleground of ideologies. Within the last week my heart has hurt even more as I've seen posts where users—some of which have been here far longer than I and have contributed more, still—have bid the forum adieu for the express reason of avoiding the negativity. Months ago I attempted to make my feelings known in hopes that perhaps it just might hold a light to the way folks divested of the need for political talk on an audio electronics forum actually feel when they read these posts. Doing so required understanding that there would be at least two given outcomes: a response best summarized as, "you don't have to read it if you don't like it," or the plea being ignored. I was fine with both, so I set about writing the post.

       One poster responded with a now-deleted apology—I was never looking for one, but the thought meant quite a bit to me at the time. That's stuck with me ever since. In the midst of so much heartache and anger, being able to take into account another's feelings or aspirations seems like an insurmountable task—unless they are of your tribe. (N.B. Thank you to that poster) I can't help but wonder if a part of this comes from the current trend of unchecked generalization.

       About a year and half ago I heard Tchad Blake utter a Pat Parelli quote in a seminar to the effect of, "Never say never, don’t always say always, usually say usually." My first reaction was obviously to laugh, but I wrote it down and found myself coming back to it. I was eventually reminded of notes from professors in the margins about generalizations. In one instance, a professor wrote something along the lines of, "laziness shows up in the form of generalizations." I believe it was the same professor that had also said something in a lecture about generalizations only leading to distrust from the reader.

       While I don't know how true that second statement really is, I do believe that generalization should be avoided at all costs when discussing human beings. There are so many users on this forum that astound me with their intelligence and their willingness to share, yet I can't help but be puzzled by such a pervasive willingness to generalize groups of people. I'm gobsmacked when I read some of the ways people are described. I have conservative friends and family, liberal friends and family; gay, straight; believers, non-believers; affluent, struggling; myriad permutations of individuality manifest in humanity for whom I care deeply. It just seems intellectually dishonest that anyone could so easily dismiss any cross-section for any number of reasons, let alone unconscionable.

        I recently did something of which I must admit I am ashamed. I referred to the Brewery as a cesspool—where ideas like civility and restraint sink to the bottom because they're too heavy to be handled. That was a knee-jerk reaction that, when coupled with a little of that aforementioned restraint, would've been jettisoned before it ever made it onto the screen. Moreover, that pithy bit of venom was a generalization we all could've done without, and I recognize that now. I say all this to say, I understand why we make generalizations—but I do not and cannot understand how we can become okay with them.

       As in the past, I'm not writing all this to garner sympathy or receive an apology. I know I've had my share of screw-ups and will surely make a mistake again very soon. I only write this as a plea to those that take their ideologies so seriously—if you truly believe in your heart that you want to make the world a better place, there is no room for generalization, especially that which allows for the exclusion of anyone from your better world. In the meantime, I'd sure love to plan on having a beer with any of you some day—even if you don't care for the majority of whatever tribe you might've placed me in. It's on me.


john12ax7

Re: Pervasiveness of Generalization
« Reply #1 on: January 11, 2021, 06:49:02 PM »
It's unfortunate that people get so tribal when it comes to politics,  logic and reason seem to go out the window. Intelligent thoughtful discourse requires consideration of multiple viewpoints,  including the consideration that your initial viewpoint is wrong.

The homegenous generalizations certainly don't help. It should be ok to criticize your own team,. It should also be ok to stand up and support the other side as well. Why is that so hard for so many? The real us vs them should not be left vs right, but rather the people vs the hypocritical corrupt politicians. They do a masterful job of dividing people to distract from robbing them blind.  Most are unfit to serve.

The networks are laughing all the way to the bank too.  I haven't met many truly logical rational and objective people when it comes to politics. The ones that are certainly have political viewpoints, but are neither hardcore democrat nor hardcore republican. And they don't spend lots of time watching things like fox news or msnbc.

Online seems to amplify the negativity.  This site is better than most,  but it does seem to have gone hill.  Too many are using it as a political forum with some electronics sprinkled in instead of the opposite. Is a shame to lose valuable members due to political nonsense.

L´Andratté

Re: Pervasiveness of Generalization
« Reply #2 on: January 12, 2021, 05:32:23 AM »
I want to to take the liberty to answer the OP (I don´t know if you adressed me among other?)

-when I criticize a party I´m not automatically for the other party, I´m certainly not "tribal", I have four year of bashing Democrats ahead of me...it already started***, because

-I am under the impression that we as humans (or even living beings) are all in it together in a train that is
full speed heading for an abyss. That is an ecological metasystem unbalanced, that will get ugly especially for our beloved children.

-To integrate into or recreate a natural balance we´d need as humankind a fundamental change of conscience/perception of our place in the world. As everyone can see that is very unlikely/when the treshold to take action is reached, it will be to late to reverse massive ecological dynamics,

-but atm political action is leaning even in the direction of doubling down on reaping natural resources, etc.
To wrap it up, in this situation seeing people caught up in the (my perception)* spoiled grievances of an narcisstic BS artist *just overwhelms my capability for keeping my mouth shut.

-There are also countless instances in the world where significant amounts of people are existentially suffering and only because of ignorance and selfishness of others, which to my own discomfort I have to identify as the wealthy part of the world, crossing all borders. Even speakin that out, get´s me a "Commie"-stamp and I´m so sick of that, it triggers me. Questioning power structures get´s me the "Anarchist"-stamp, it triggers me too (politically well educated conservative just LOVE to mistake anarchy for anomy). If there were as much anarchists around as the right fantasizes, Utopia were just around the corner ;D

-I will as of now only write to audio stuff, right- and leftwingnuts of GDIY: I love you all(in an internet forum way) ;)

Just take it easy, dont let it bring you down, let it make you thinking.


*** as we don´t really need just a little less of the "bad"
« Last Edit: January 12, 2021, 05:40:05 AM by L´Andratté »
"Why not get an assistant to work the faders? Real vintage! And maybe cheaper... ;)"

boji

Re: Pervasiveness of Generalization
« Reply #3 on: January 13, 2021, 03:30:23 PM »
Quote
They do a masterful job of dividing people to distract from robbing them blind.  Most are unfit to serve.

The networks are laughing all the way to the bank too

++1  Reading Edward Bernays on manipulation of the masses / crowd psychology put me in my place. Should be required reading before using the internet.
« Last Edit: January 13, 2021, 03:45:29 PM by boji »

iampoor1

Re: Pervasiveness of Generalization
« Reply #4 on: January 13, 2021, 03:44:03 PM »
It also doesn't help when some of these people love a few thousand miles away from what they are criticising, and getting information strictly from sensationalized news sources!

groselicain

Re: Pervasiveness of Generalization
« Reply #5 on: January 13, 2021, 04:17:11 PM »
++1  Reading Edward Bernays on manipulation of the masses / crowd psychology put me in my place. Should be required reading before using the internet.

Thanks, I'll give that a read tonight if I can track it down.

cyrano

Re: Pervasiveness of Generalization
« Reply #6 on: January 13, 2021, 04:47:09 PM »
It also doesn't help when some of these people love a few thousand miles away from what they are criticising, and getting information strictly from sensationalized news sources!

Do you mean Afghanistan?  8)
Why is it people love to believe and hate to know?