Tuesday, January 01, 2019

Welcome to 2019, which looks to be a confusing and challenging year for political bedfellows






For New Year’s Eve, I left home a little late but found the Metro not crowded and got to the Dupont Circle around 10:30 and decided to stop at Cobalt, even if a little more expensive ($25). I hadn’t been there since Town closed.


It was a moderate crowd, not that many people I recognized this time.

I wanted to mention that the recent concern I have with the deplatforming of some supposedly right wing podcasters seems to be coming from pressure from payment processors which in turn comes from some activism on the left (the Southern Poverty Law Center is often mentioned). 


This can (with some political irony behind the scenes) become a problem for LGBT content, especially with respect to explicit materials.  There is a divide within the gay community with the older “cis gay male” establishment with its personal values (tending more toward libertarianism, but with support of complete legal equality in areas like the military and marriage), and the more extreme demands of some in the fluid and trans community, who see refusal to date someone as a form of discrimination. The personal and the political get comerged, and this can get dangerous.  

I’ll add that the issue of transgender in the military is much smaller than the issue for the cis gay men and women in the military as resolved in 2011.  There is no question that in some cases the service of exceptional trans people has been very valuable.  We need to watch and see how the incoming acting defense secretary and any replacement act on the issue. 

 Electronic Frontier Foundation has a number of articles on the payment processor system issue and censorship as well as surveillance, such as this one. We need to pay attention to this.

The leadership in the gay community has to watch conflicting political and social currents, which sometimes seem to be at odds and can produce strange political bedfellows.  Some of the problems filter down to organizational leadership's trying to separating out tribes of enemies and friends rather than looking at the issues from the viewpoint of individual rights and responsibilities under the rule of law.
  
But I would feel ashamed of having nothing better than to claim some sort of intersectional group oppression.

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