The Pledge of Allegiance

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I refused to say the Pledge of Allegiance.  The schools couldn’t legally force me to say it, but they tried to anyway.  Whatever my parents’ faults, they went to bat for me every time.  It was never a question of patriotism for me but a willingness to conform and obey.

At one point my dad announced a great victory: That I’d be allowed to leave out the “God” part. 🤦🏻‍♀️  He’d totally, totally, missed the point.

I don’t ever recall having used the ‘G’ word.  In elementary school I would simply mumble the pledge before I quit entirely.  Something about standing there, chanting in unison without really understanding what it was we were saying just made me super uncomfortable.

When I got older, it became the notion of the Pledge itself — rather than the delivery — that bothered me the most.  I love America, I think it is the greatest country in the world and (despite its many imperfections) that it has the greatest system of government ever conceived.

But I’m not willing to pledge to my allegiance to any state or nation or any symbol thereof.  I believe in loyalty to ideas.  To principles.  And even in junior high my word meant something to me, and I wasn’t about to make any pledge I didn’t mean.

My dad fought hard against the schools to allow me to simply stand for the Pledge.  Even that bothered me because the school was still trampling my 1st Amendment rights by insisting (yes, the SCOTUS has ruled on it), but I since I’d already been standing anyway, I wasn’t about to make a big deal of it.

Even after the administrators acquiesced, I was still prone to getting teachers and substitutes who would try to force me to say it anyway.  It was obnoxious.  They’d try all sorts of tactics, including denouncing me in front of my classmates for “disrespecting our military”.  Which was a disgusting charge.  They didn’t care about the troops.  All they cared about was conformity and obeisance.

I have zero problem with the Pledge being said in schools or public gatherings, but I do have a huge, huge problem with people being illegally forced to say it or subjected to harrassment when they refuse.

As a side note, the history of the Pledge is rather interesting and dripping with irony.  One could half-kiddingly describe Francis Bellamy as a National Socialist.  (Drops to one-quarter kiddingly when you factor in the salute.)

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Health = Bigotry

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I weighed only 79 lbs when I was 20 years old.  My BMI was 13.4.  I’d stopped menstruating, my hair was coming out in clumps, and my own father said I looked like a Holocaust victim.

But I realize now that the people who’d labeled me anorexic and said I was a compulsive over-exerciser were actually oppressing me.  I only wish I’d had the courage to #resist treatment, call them all Nazis, and throw milkshakes in their faces.

Fuck the cis white patriarchy!

Feminists Hate Hercules

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Feminists have always hated Hercules: The Legendary Journeys because it’s centered around two strong male protagonists and promotes the idea that a woman can be ANYTHING — including the things feminists don’t want her to be.

There were women warriors, blacksmiths, scholars, huntresses and pirates — right alongside housewives, mothers, priestesses, midwives and bar wenches.

A woman could be a hero or a villain, friend or foe, an aggressor or (*shock*) innocent victim.

Hercules and Iolaus were out to make the world a better place for everyone.  They believed in justice tempered with mercy — not awarding special favors according to race and gender or denying opportunities to those who’ve earned them.

Imagine your little girl growing up to believe that she is who she chooses to be, not what anyone makes her.

You want to talk about internalized misogyny?  Feminism at its core.

Culture Wars: Then and Now

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(Replies to Nev):

I grew up in a secular household, so I never understood where people were coming from with the religious stuff. And things were pretty bad when I was a kid, as far as people throwing Christianity into your face. About as bad as it is now with Islam, although the crusaders of my childhood were generally non-violent.

Tay and I grew up during America’s last culture war, when people felt threatened by *legitimate* social progress and were trying to impose what essentially amounted to conservative Christian values upon others — even though it wasn’t so simple as religious vs. secular or left vs. right.

Al Gore and his wife — believe it or not — were at the forefront of those who wanted to use government censorship to keep subversive, Satanic ideas from working their way into the minds of young people. The Evangelicals were with him, unsurprisingly. But non-churchgoers and the moderately religious were not.

The same sort of media-driven outrage you see now was going on back then, only they were playing up the divide by stoking outrage over traditional “American” (i.e., conservative) values, even though the media back then was almost as left-wing as it is now.

It was about ratings — for the networks, at least. For the average Joe, it was about religion, and for the politicians, it was about political power. Both the Dems and the GOP wanted to secure their share of thr Evangelical vote, which back then was pretty evenly split.

The crusaders ultimately took it too far. People (especially young people) rebelled — hardcore. The concept of America as a judeo-Christian nation slowly began to die, except in the minds of the Evangelicals.

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[DISCORD] Re: Hilarious Feminist Redirect Cringe

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It’s a common tactic with the Regressive Left. They actually taught us how to “redirect” in a gen ed communications class I took in college. They claimed it was a “debate tactic”.

Only back then there was actually some finesse involved. You look at young leftists these days like this brave womxn and AOC, and it becomes obvious that no one has even bothered to instruct them. They simply ignore inconvenient questions and come out with their prepackaged soundbites.

NPCs at their finest. Which is probably why I am now able to watch this womxn and laugh. A few months ago, that wouldn’t have been the case.

[Tay] can vouch for me on that. He’s been subjected to more of my feminism-is-cancer rants than any of you guys.

Feminism is an ideology that has nothing to do with women’s rights. Womyn are simply convenient tools for these neo-Marxists to achieve their vision of an identity-based caste system of goodthinking minority womyn on top and cis white males — and “gender traitors” — on the bottom.

Celebrities have made feminism seem sexy, and the mainstream media has been sugarcoating the inherent racism and misogyny of it all, but feminism’s worst enablers have been ordinary people who say, “The don’t mean that literally,” and “Not all feminists…”

Regressive Friends

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I grew up in the wealthiest county in America.  Doesn’t mean we were filthy rich (upper middle class), but I never lacked for anything that could be paid for in cash.

Most of my friends from junior high on came from extremely wealthy and/or influential families.  Hardly any of it was “old” money — most of my friends had at least one parent or grandparent who came from a working-class family.  Some of their parents immigrated here (legally) from impoverished nations.  One even came here as a refugee.

Parents generally want their children to have the best things in life.  These parents were no exception.

My friends were denied nothing. Many of them were given cellphones and credit cards before they were old enough to drive. 16th birthday present?  New car was standard.

Most of my friends went off to expensive private colleges.  Few of them lasted beyond the first couple of semesters.

The ones who did manage to finish college all have masters degrees in either social work or education.  Make of that what you will.

Those who left school generally remained unemployed throughout their twenties, still living off of (but not with) their parents.  Their parents paid their rent, their bills, and (unwittingly) for their drugs.  A few of them were gifted townhouses or fancy condos.

They couldn’t find jobs because they never bothered to look.  They advocated for universal healthcare because they knew it was only a matter of time before they’d be kicked off of their parents’ plans.

The girls got involved with left-wing activism early on because it was trendy to call yourself a feminist.  The guys got involved much later (around the time of Occupy Wall Street) once they realized prestige couldn’t be siphoned off as easily as cash.

We were the kids who were told we could be whatever we wanted to in life — regardless of race, sex, sexual orientation, or ethnicity.  We believed it, and we filled our heads with such wonderful dreams.

The part they left out was that those dreams wouldn’t simply be handed to us by some surrogate parental entity — we’d have to work towards them, and success is never a guarantee in life.

My friends aren’t stupid.  A lot of them are highly-intelligent people.  I think deep down they realize where they messed up, only the sense of shame is more than they can bear.

And so they fall back on their intelligence — see themselves as the enlightened, intellectual elite — as if IQ alone were something to be proud of.  (I have far greater respect for a mentally-challenged individual who can hold down a job than I have for a worthless genius.)

Disagree with them and you are ignorant.  Or bigoted.  Or simply blinded by your own privilege (or by a lack thereof).

It’s far easier to blame one’s own failures on an oppressive, capitalistic, patriarchal system than it is to re-examine one’s own life choices.  And it’s far easier to smear someone you disagree with as racist, sexist, homophobic, etc. than it is to address their ideas directly — particularly on issues of economics.

Which is why everyone right-of-left these days is automatically racist, sexist, homophobic, etc. — regardless of their race, sex, sexual orientation, etc.