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Apparatchik Magnet
Sep 25, 2019

by Jeffrey of YOSPOS


Harold Fjord posted:

how are you measuring 'legitimacy' of fear?

This is a good question. Is something worthy of fear because it's, say, 9-14 times more dangerous than a comparable thing, or not worthy of fear because it's still only going to happen to you at a fairly low rate, like .01% or something. And how intense does the "something" happening to you have to be and how human vs. mechanistic the something causing the risk to adjust this equation?

Is fear of pitbulls legitimate but not poodles, for example? Malaysian Airlines but not flying in general? Crossing the Berlin Wall vs. the Rio Grande? Which of these does Jeminsin's work most closely approximate, and is she aware of it and capable of understanding it?

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Ccs
Feb 25, 2011




Harold Fjord posted:

how are you measuring 'legitimacy' of fear?

The capacity the magical individual has for violence compared to an ordinary human.

Apparatchik Magnet
Sep 25, 2019

by Jeffrey of YOSPOS


Ccs posted:

The capacity the magical individual has for violence compared to an ordinary human.

Capacity but not actual action? So you fear muscular people and people who carry pocket knifes, even if they behave no differently than the weak and unarmed? You would have or did fear the Soviet Union, with its greater number of nukes, more than the US, who actually used some historically but had fewer?

killer crane
Dec 30, 2006


Jaxyon posted:

What about forced sterilization, rape, murder, and child abuse?

You said regulation is not oppression, and that's silly, because of course it can be oppression.

Those things are also oppression.

Also I think the discussion about threat misses real problem with power disparity in the metaphor. We can agree you shouldn't oppress people at all, even for their "power" in real life, but should regulated/democratize power in real life. We can also agree that oppression flows from power, not to power, and justice is the democratization of power to attempt to stop oppression's flow.

Now when applying the treatment of the orogene as metaphor it is (in most cases) hyperbolic; for metaphor hyperbole is normal. How hyperbolic should it be read to apply to real life? Reading it less hyperbolic it is a minority being oppressed, reading it more hyperbolic it is someone's power being democratized. So the power structure in the story doesn't work for this metaphor.

Doctor Faustine
Sep 2, 2018


I think “legitimacy of fear” is very simple; the greater someone’s ability to kill you dead, the more legitimate your fear of them is.

It is more legitimate to be afraid of someone with a baseball bat than someone with only their fists. It’s more legitimate to be afraid of someone with an AR-15 than someone with a baseball bat. It is more legitimate to be afraid of someone who can cause city-destroying earthquakes with their brain than someone with an AR-15.

Apparatchik Magnet
Sep 25, 2019

by Jeffrey of YOSPOS


Doctor Faustine posted:

I think “legitimacy of fear” is very simple; the greater someone’s ability to kill you dead, the more legitimate your fear of them is.

It is more legitimate to be afraid of someone with a baseball bat than someone with only their fists. It’s more legitimate to be afraid of someone with an AR-15 than someone with a baseball bat. It is more legitimate to be afraid of someone who can cause city-destroying earthquakes with their brain than someone with an AR-15.

I agree that this thought is very simple.

Do you fear your father carrying a baseball bat or AR-15 more than any possible stranger doing the same? Do you fear Alex Rodriguez carrying a baseball bat at a signing event with the fans? Do you fear the national guardsman holding an M-4 at the Capitol? Are you capable of understanding why you don't, despite their greater ability to kill you, consider fear of them legitimate?

Ccs
Feb 25, 2011




Anyway I think I’ve harped enough on one trope that affects a number of series, but only one of Jemisin’s, that I think creates some unfortunate thematic confusion. I’m gonna pick up Jemisin’s How Long ‘til Black Future Month so I have more to discuss in the thread.

Jaxyon
Mar 6, 2016
boring as hell and also can be low-key racist

killer crane posted:

You said regulation is not oppression, and that's silly, because of course it can be oppression.

Those things are also oppression.

Also I think the discussion about threat misses real problem with power disparity in the metaphor. We can agree you shouldn't oppress people at all, even for their "power" in real life, but should regulated/democratize power in real life. We can also agree that oppression flows from power, not to power, and justice is the democratization of power to attempt to stop oppression's flow.

Now when applying the treatment of the orogene as metaphor it is (in most cases) hyperbolic; for metaphor hyperbole is normal. How hyperbolic should it be read to apply to real life? Reading it less hyperbolic it is a minority being oppressed, reading it more hyperbolic it is someone's power being democratized. So the power structure in the story doesn't work for this metaphor.

More accurately, oppression is not regulation, which is what Ccs said. That's a gross metaphor.

"I'm gonna regulate these jews out of existence, to keep the danger to our financial system under control, which is a very real fear to me"

Regulation can be used to execute oppression, but that's not what Ccs was originally talking about.

Ccs
Feb 25, 2011




I don't want to keep having this argument but "a real fear to me" is not the same as "a fear born out of the capacity the magical individual has for violence compared to an ordinary human that is supported by the text of the story, not just by the paranoid imaginings of some of the characters in the story."

Cyclops has dangerous eyebeams. That's an indisputable fact in the text of X-Men. The space lasers that certain congresspeople imagine that Jews have is a paranoid imagining and not a fact.

And before you go "but is Cyclops having eyebeams a reason to oppress him?" No, it's not. The fact that he has dangerous eye beams does not condone oppression. But it gives the fear a real foundation. Thus breaking the metaphor between Cyclops and a member of an actually marginalized group.

Like, when a series like Attack on Titan has its main character use the magic power inherent to his ethnic group to kill a majority of living humans despite the best attempts of many of his friends in the same ethnic group to stop him, it creates some problematic implications that the series trips over before falling down a flight of stairs.

Ccs fucked around with this message at 17:23 on Apr 8, 2021

Jaxyon
Mar 6, 2016
boring as hell and also can be low-key racist

Ccs posted:

I don't want to keep having this argument but "a real fear to me" is not the same as "a fear born out of the capacity the magical individual has for violence compared to an ordinary human that is supported by the text of the story, not just by the paranoid imaginings of some of the characters in the story."

Cyclops has dangerous eyebeams. That's an indisputable fact in the text of X-Men. The space lasers that certain congresspeople imagine that Jews have is a paranoid imagining and not a fact.

And before you go "but is Cyclops having eyebeams a reason to oppress him?" No, it's not. The fact that he has dangerous eye beams does not condone oppression. But it gives the fear a real foundation. Thus breaking the metaphor between Cyclops and a member of an actually marginalized group.

Like, when a series like Attack on Titan has its main character use the magic power inherent to his ethnic group to kill a majority of living humans despite the best attempts of many of his friends in the same ethnic group to stop him, it creates some problematic implications that the series trips over before falling down a flight of stairs.

It does not matter because the people doing the oppression always think the fear has a real foundation.

Harold Fjord
Jan 3, 2004



Please expand on "problematic implications."

I can think of plenty of stories about perfectly ordinary people who go too far and cross lines on their quest for vengeance

killer crane
Dec 30, 2006


Jaxyon posted:

It does not matter because the people doing the oppression always think the fear has a real foundation.

So we all agree that controls on something legitimately dangerous is usually okay. Fear is a good excuse for gun control.

So what happens to the metaphor of oppression when you give the oppressors something to actually fear about the oppressed? It breaks the metaphor because it muddles bigoted oppression and control for actual social safety.

Ccs
Feb 25, 2011




Harold Fjord posted:

Please expand on "problematic implications."

I can think of plenty of stories about perfectly ordinary people who go too far and cross lines on their quest for vengeance

The story positions the power as exclusive to a certain ethnic group. It basically says "the space laser is real and its now genociding everyone."

I think it should be obvious why that has problematic implications?

killer crane said it perfectly, "what happens to the metaphor of oppression when you give the oppressors something to actually fear about the oppressed? It breaks the metaphor because it muddles bigoted oppression and control for actual social safety."

Jaxyon
Mar 6, 2016
boring as hell and also can be low-key racist

killer crane posted:

So we all agree that controls on something legitimately dangerous is usually okay. Fear is a good excuse for gun control.

Lets examine all the different wrong things going on in this part of your post alone:

1) Oppression isn't "controls"
2) Child abuse isn't "regulation"
3) Collective punishment for a group for potential danger isn't justified
4) The oppressor always thinks the oppressed is legitimately dangerous
5) Fear isn't a good excuse for gun control, safety is.
6) People aren't born with guns built in and if they were oppression wouldn't be a just response

I'm probably missing some but holy poo poo

quote:

So what happens to the metaphor of oppression when you give the oppressors something to actually fear about the oppressed? It breaks the metaphor because it muddles bigoted oppression and control for actual social safety.

Nothing because it doesn't change things at all other than you start getting apologists for oppression among the readers, but that's not really much different from real life either so.......

Harold Fjord
Jan 3, 2004



Laws about when and where guns or superpowers should be fired are reasonable. Camps for anyone who won't or can't disarm aren't.

Ccs
Feb 25, 2011




Jaxyon posted:

Lets examine all the different wrong things going on in this part of your post alone:

1) Oppression isn't "controls"
2) Child abuse isn't "regulation"
3) Collective punishment for a group for potential danger isn't justified
4) The oppressor always thinks the oppressed is legitimately dangerous
5) Fear isn't a good excuse for gun control, safety is.
6) People aren't born with guns built in and if they were oppression wouldn't be a just response

These are all issues that come from making a story where a certain group are given deadly magical powers. People are born with guns built in in these stories. This whole list is just evidence of the incoherency that results from trying to equate people with deadly magical powers to a marginalized group.

Jaxyon posted:

4) The oppressor always thinks the oppressed is legitimately dangerous

Also I'm not sure you get how this is important in context. It's like you're saying there no moral difference between someone taking an action because something is true and because they imagine it to be true.

Ccs fucked around with this message at 18:40 on Apr 8, 2021

Jaxyon
Mar 6, 2016
boring as hell and also can be low-key racist

Ccs posted:

These are all issues that come from making a story where a certain group are given deadly magical powers. People are born with guns built in in these stories. This whole list is just evidence of the incoherency that results from trying to equate people with deadly magical powers to a marginalized group.

If people were born with guns built into their arms it still wouldn't be OK to oppress them.

The incoherence is coming from you and others deciding that oppression is actually justified if you're scared enough.

quote:

Also I'm not sure you get how this is important in context. It's like you're saying there no moral difference between someone taking an action because something is true and because they imagine it to be true.

Torturing children is a bad thing to do, if you do it because you think they're dangerous, or because they are actually dangerous.

I didn't think this would be a confusing point to make but here we are.

killer crane
Dec 30, 2006


let's examine the wrong things about this post

Jaxyon posted:

Lets examine all the different wrong things going on in this part of your post alone:

1) Oppression isn't "controls"

You're right, I didn't say oppression is control, I don't know where you're getting this. It's not like I said "regulating guns is oppression." but that you've somehow read it like that shows how broken the metaphor is.

Jaxyon posted:

2) Child abuse isn't "regulation"

Wow, thank you for clarifying that. I must have forgotten writing that.

Oh, I'm being told I did not say anything like that. Metaphor does not require a 1:1 text to real life application.

Jaxyon posted:

3) Collective punishment for a group for potential danger isn't justified

I'm not sure you're reading the post you quoted. Do you feel like taking away automatic weapons from gun owners is punishment? Cause that's the only reading of your third point that makes any sense, because I was taking about gun regulation, and now your point again is proof positive of the metaphor is broken.

Jaxyon posted:

4) The oppressor always thinks the oppressed is legitimately dangerous

Again, what do we do with things that really are 100% provably dangerous?

Jaxyon posted:

5) Fear isn't a good excuse for gun control, safety is

We seek safety from things we fear. Safety isn't a motivating factor in and of itself.

Jaxyon posted:


6) People aren't born with guns built in and if they were oppression wouldn't be a just response

Controlling their user of the guns would be just, and because the guns are intrinsic to them, it would be a control of them as people... The metaphor again breaks.

Jaxyon posted:


Nothing because it doesn't change things at all other than you start getting apologists for oppression among the readers, but that's not really much different from real life either so.......

more likely you'd get a gun rights activist, or some alt-right libertarian chud reading it, viewing the oppression of power as a metaphor for control of power, and it would not be a misreading of the text.

Jaxyon
Mar 6, 2016
boring as hell and also can be low-key racist

I think part of the issue is you've picked up Ccs's argument, who did liken oppression against wizards to gun control.

Jaxyon
Mar 6, 2016
boring as hell and also can be low-key racist

Lets get to the core of this, then.

killer crane posted:

Controlling their user of the guns would be just, and because the guns are intrinsic to them, it would be a control of them as people... The metaphor again breaks.

If someone was born with guns in their arms, it would not be just to oppress them because of how they were born. Describing it as "gun control" is sophistry.

If you don't see how limiting the freedom of someone because you fear their "danger" is different from "buying an object" and "regulating purchases" then you're going to have some trouble distinguishing oppression from gun control.

PeterWeller
Apr 20, 2003

I told you that story so I could tell you this one.



Ccs posted:

These are all issues that come from making a story where a certain group are given deadly magical powers. People are born with guns built in in these stories. This whole list is just evidence of the incoherency that results from trying to equate people with deadly magical powers to a marginalized group.

None of those issues, aside from maybe the last one, arise from Jemisin's narrative choices.

But also:

quote:

The text of the book shows us orogenes having deadly magical powers that can kill people.

And the text of the book shows us orogenes are a marginalized group.

This isn't a metaphor. It's an allegory. It may be an implausible one, but so is the wealthy man unequally dividing his money among his servants while he goes off on a trip.

killer crane posted:

Metaphor does not require a 1:1 text to real life application.

But the issue you have with the text is that orogenes don't exactly correspond to marginalized people in the actual world.

Harold Fjord
Jan 3, 2004



What kind of control as people are we talking about, exactly? People are controlled as people pretty often. Criminal suspects are often arrested and printed and later found not guilty.

The line where not crosses into oppression and abuse is not always obvious, which is why the fictional examples often are rather extreme

Ccs
Feb 25, 2011




Jaxyon posted:

Torturing children is a bad thing to do, if you do it because you think they're dangerous, or because they are actually dangerous.

I didn't think this would be a confusing point to make but here we are.

You're specifically picking the most absurd answer by going for the torture option, which is considered immoral in all circumstances. Try it with something that would be moral given whether something is true or not and try again.

killer crane
Dec 30, 2006


Jaxyon posted:

I think part of the issue is you've picked up Ccs's argument, who did liken oppression against wizards to gun control.

I think ccs is trying to point out the same thing; not justifying oppression because of their power, but that someone can read the metaphor as controlling power. (I think) Ccs is coming at it from a gun nuts perspective, showing you how someone like that can interpret the story as oppression against themself, trying to show that that person isn't illogical in their interpretation, in order to prove that the metaphor breaks.

killer crane
Dec 30, 2006


Jaxyon posted:

Lets get to the core of this, then.


If someone was born with guns in their arms, it would not be just to oppress them because of how they were born. Describing it as "gun control" is sophistry.

If you don't see how limiting the freedom of someone because you fear their "danger" is different from "buying an object" and "regulating purchases" then you're going to have some trouble distinguishing oppression from gun control.

Yeah, that's the problem, I do want to limit people's freedom to buy automatic weapons because I see that as a danger. I want to limit people's economic freedom when they inherit extreme wealth because hording that wealth is a societal danger. This storys thesis can easily be read as being against both of those things, and it won't have to ignore anything in the texts.

I mean, that's why having people born with AK47s growing out of their arms confuses the point of oppression. How do you ensure everyone's safety? You'd have to put some control on those people, and the use of their Ak47 arms. Where's the line between oppression and control at that point?

killer crane fucked around with this message at 19:42 on Apr 8, 2021

Ccs
Feb 25, 2011




Yeah. I mean I have a lot of issues with the oppressed wizards trope. I'm hyper sensitive to it at the moment because Attack on Titan just ended and bungled its themes so badly by using it, but I also tried writing a story at some point using that trope and got rightly called out for it by a developmental editor who gave me a detailed breakdown of every reason why it doesn't work. I changed the story and it was better (i'm publishing the book that came out of that in a week or so.)

So it was weird reading The Fifth Season and being like "wait this has the same issue"

If you want a list of the reasons:
1- a person will be punished for their difference unless they can exploit their difference in some way, and magic is always exploitable.
2- having valuable skills does not lead to marginalization. Capable individuals are not oppressed for the poor mass’s benefit, and neither would wizards be oppressed for mundane people’s benefit.
3 - The kind of person looking to scapegoat entire groups of people is almost always looking for an easy win, not trying to control people who can easily fight back.
4 - Religious oppression wouldn't cause wizard oppression because in a world with magic, magic would be integrated into religion.
5 - Bigots often claim that whichever group they hate is inherently dangerous. When you make such threats real, you at least partly justify the actions taken to stop them. (this is what we're all currently arguing about.)
6 - Elites rarely remain downtrodden for long. A story that has the wizards in power at the end is just confirming that they were the true elites.
7- Wizards would use their power to gain resources to attain regular human allies so they couldn't be outnumber the wizards and crush them with numerical superiority.
8 - If you're trying to oppress wizards with technology, well, they have access to technology too.
9 - You can make the magic weak, but that reduces the chances of anyone being oppressed for it. It might be a little unusual, but it’s so unimportant that it would quickly fade into the background. Plus why even have it in the story at that point? Aren't you using magic for the big action set pieces?
10 - You can oppress wizards with wizard hunters, but then the hunter is also a wizard in every way that matters. Why aren't the hunters then oppressed? (Broken Earth solved this by having the Guardians be from the evil earth. In essence the story becomes more a of a wizard vs wizard story by the end, with the evil earth as the strongest wizard.)

Ccs fucked around with this message at 19:41 on Apr 8, 2021

killer crane
Dec 30, 2006


PeterWeller posted:

But the issue you have with the text is that orogenes don't exactly correspond to marginalized people in the actual world.

Giving the orogenes magic powers lends them to be read as corresponding to groups in power who feel oppressed, and legitimizing those feeling, instead of corresponding to an actual marginalized groups.

TheGreatEvilKing
Mar 28, 2016



killer crane posted:

Giving the orogenes magic powers lends them to be read as corresponding to groups in power who feel oppressed, and legitimizing those feeling, instead of corresponding to an actual marginalized groups.

This is what I've been trying to articulate with the Richard Rahl comparisons, thank you.

Jaxyon
Mar 6, 2016
boring as hell and also can be low-key racist

Ccs posted:

You're specifically picking the most absurd answer by going for the torture option, which is considered immoral in all circumstances. Try it with something that would be moral given whether something is true or not and try again.

What levels of oppression are OK if you're really scared of the people you're oppressing?

Ccs
Feb 25, 2011




Jaxyon posted:

What levels of oppression are OK if you're really scared of the people you're oppressing?

killer crane posted:

How do you ensure everyone's safety? You'd have to put some control on those people, and the use of their Ak47 arms. Where's the line between oppression and control at that point?

Giving the orogenes magic powers lends them to be read as corresponding to groups in power who feel oppressed, and legitimizing those feeling, instead of corresponding to an actual marginalized groups.

Khizan
Jul 30, 2013




The orogenes are an especially bad type of oppressed wizard, because they can kill people 100% by accident. There's a scene very early in the first book where an orogene schoolgirl gets pushed in a playground scuffle and her response almost kills a kid. It's not even because she was trying to hurt him and went too hard, it's literally just "she got scared and angry and her instinctive response almost killed a kid as a side effect".

Guns are a lovely metaphor for this, because guns require an act of will. You choose to shoot a gun, even if it's for bad reasons. If you have a negligent discharge, you chose to be in a situation where that was a possibility. In either case, you could have made a different choice and the gun would not have fired. Orogenes, though, they can just accidentally kill people if their control ever slips. Would you want to send your kids to school with orogene kids, knowing that a fight over who gets to use the swings next could result in a kidsicle? Would you want to share an apartment wall with them, knowing that you're one night terror away from freezing solid?

These aren't cases where they're being malicious. They're not trying to hurt anybody. It's just that if an orogene's self control is less than perfect, they can kill everybody around them. If I tried, I don't think I could design a better justification for a 'separate but equal' doctrine and all the systematic oppression that would inevitably go with it.

PeterWeller
Apr 20, 2003

I told you that story so I could tell you this one.



killer crane posted:

Giving the orogenes magic powers lends them to be read as corresponding to groups in power who feel oppressed, and legitimizing those feeling, instead of corresponding to an actual marginalized groups.

But the orogenes are a (textually) actual marginalized group. This is my issue with the argument that they're a poor metaphor for marginalized groups. They are literally a marginalized group. You don't need to read them symbolically at all.

Ccs posted:

If you want a list of the reasons:
1- a person will be punished for their difference unless they can exploit their difference in some way, and magic is always exploitable.
2- having valuable skills does not lead to marginalization. Capable individuals are not oppressed for the poor mass’s benefit, and neither would wizards be oppressed for mundane people’s benefit.
3 - The kind of person looking to scapegoat entire groups of people is almost always looking for an easy win, not trying to control people who can easily fight back.
4 - Religious oppression wouldn't cause wizard oppression because in a world with magic, magic would be integrated into religion.
5 - Bigots often claim that whichever group they hate is inherently dangerous. When you make such threats real, you at least partly justify the actions taken to stop them. (this is what we're all currently arguing about.)
6 - Elites rarely remain downtrodden for long. A story that has the wizards in power at the end is just confirming that they were the true elites.
7- Wizards would use their power to gain resources to attain regular human allies so they couldn't be outnumber the wizards and crush them with numerical superiority.
8 - If you're trying to oppress wizards with technology, well, they have access to technology too.
9 - You can make the magic weak, but that reduces the chances of anyone being oppressed for it. It might be a little unusual, but it’s so unimportant that it would quickly fade into the background. Plus why even have it in the story at that point? Aren't you using magic for the big action set pieces?
10 - You can oppress wizards with wizard hunters, but then the hunter is also a wizard in every way that matters. Why aren't the hunters then oppressed? (Broken Earth solved this by having the Guardians be from the evil earth. In essence the story becomes more a of a wizard vs wizard story by the end, with the evil earth as the strongest wizard.)

This is a great list of reasons why the situation is implausible. The Broken Earth trilogy reads very poorly as a believable fantasy world. But that's a different case than "orogenes are a poor metaphor for marginalized groups".

killer crane
Dec 30, 2006


PeterWeller posted:

But the orogenes are a (textually) actual marginalized group. This is my issue with the argument that they're a poor metaphor for marginalized groups. They are literally a marginalized group. You don't need to read them symbolically at all.

This is a great list of reasons why the situation is implausible. The Broken Earth trilogy reads very poorly as a believable fantasy world. But that's a different case than "orogenes are a poor metaphor for marginalized groups".

I don't think it's been argued that they don't symbolize marginalized groups. The problem is that this symbolism is broken to include people currently in/with power, and legitimizes those people feeling marginalized because of their power.

Bilirubin
Feb 16, 2014

The sanctioned action is to CHUG!!!




Bleak Gremlin

Khizan posted:

The orogenes are an especially bad type of oppressed wizard, because they can kill people 100% by accident. There's a scene very early in the first book where an orogene schoolgirl gets pushed in a playground scuffle and her response almost kills a kid. It's not even because she was trying to hurt him and went too hard, it's literally just "she got scared and angry and her instinctive response almost killed a kid as a side effect".
*Star Trek: Discovery writers start scribbling notes*

PeterWeller
Apr 20, 2003

I told you that story so I could tell you this one.



killer crane posted:

I don't think it's been argued that they don't symbolize marginalized groups. The problem is that this symbolism is broken to include people currently in/with power, and legitimizes those people feeling marginalized because of their power.

I'm arguing that they don't symbolize marginalized groups. I'm arguing that they are literally a marginalized group. There are no separate vehicle and tenor here. There is no need to read them symbolically at all.

Those people are gonna find myriad reasons to legitimize their stupid feelings, so whatever. gently caress them.

I agree that the oppressed wizard trope is flawed and implausible because it fundamentally mistakes the power dynamics behind oppression.

I'll drop it here, though, because ultimately I'm just saying that's not symbolism, guys.

Jaxyon
Mar 6, 2016
boring as hell and also can be low-key racist

PeterWeller posted:

I'm arguing that they don't symbolize marginalized groups. I'm arguing that they are literally a marginalized group. There are no separate vehicle and tenor here. There is no need to read them symbolically at all.

Those people are gonna find myriad reasons to legitimize their stupid feelings, so whatever. gently caress them.

I agree that the oppressed wizard trope is flawed and implausible because it fundamentally mistakes the power dynamics behind oppression.

I'll drop it here, though, because ultimately I'm just saying that's not symbolism, guys.

Exactly so.

That's why saying 'well it's actually OK to oppress them because they're scary' is incoherent to me. Because you end up being an oppression apologist. They're being oppressed. It's really traumatic and bad. It's there in text, not subtext.

It's just that some people in this thread seem to think that there are, in at least thought experiment fashion, cases in which oppression is justified.

Harold Fjord
Jan 3, 2004



The power dynamics argument seems a little off to me because people who are physically and intellectually advantaged already exist but aren't collectively dominating society as elites, whatever our current elites may tell themselves.

I have no need with being sick of the trope, I just don't think it's all that problematic.

Harold Fjord fucked around with this message at 22:54 on Apr 8, 2021

Bilirubin
Feb 16, 2014

The sanctioned action is to CHUG!!!




Bleak Gremlin

It makes me sad that this thread is already as long as the James Joyce thread, which has been open for a year. Surely there is enough for nerds to fight over in his books

Jaxyon
Mar 6, 2016
boring as hell and also can be low-key racist

Bilirubin posted:

It makes me sad that this thread is already as long as the James Joyce thread, which has been open for a year. Surely there is enough for nerds to fight over in his books



Be the change you in the forum you want to see

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Ccs
Feb 25, 2011




Jaxyon posted:

Exactly so.

That's why saying 'well it's actually OK to oppress them because they're scary' is incoherent to me. Because you end up being an oppression apologist. They're being oppressed. It's really traumatic and bad. It's there in text, not subtext.

It's just that some people in this thread seem to think that there are, in at least thought experiment fashion, cases in which oppression is justified.

What the orogenes are put through in the series is terrible, but the nature of their powers raises questions that have awkward answers. Would you live near an orogene knowing that if their self control was less than perfect they could kill you? Not because of malice but because of a mistake. It would result in, at they very least, policies of control to minimize loss of life, and as killer crane noted, Where's the line between oppression and control at that point?

Or, y'know, if it was US-esque it might just result in a lot of dead people every year and everyone would shrug and say they can't do anything because of whatever the fantasy world equivalent of the Second Amendment is. I mean, gun nuts literally believe they're being oppressed by having their guns taken away, and as you've previously argued there's no moral difference between something being true and what someone believes is true.

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