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  #101  
Old 01-05-2010, 07:32 PM
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Originally Posted by ImaginaryIllusion View Post
I'd suggest those without children go back and re-examine this line of thought if and when you have children. You might find the decisions you will be willing to make will be drastically different that those made as a non-parent/guardian.
No kidding. It's a whole different ball-game. Hell-it's not even a BALL game anymore. It's more of a juggling game-only you get to juggle burning objects that could kill.
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  #102  
Old 01-05-2010, 07:40 PM
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Originally Posted by GroundedSpirit View Post
It seems to me that somewhat of a division is forming here which if you think about it, is detrimental to what the commonalities are that are shared.
Being a veteran of a few campaigns of activism myself I would only like to remind everyone that all the soldiers are equally important and have a role to play.
We need the bold and brave, willing and capable of standing on the front line and taking the hits. Making all the noise. Creating important distractions. But no less do we need those in a position to "walk softly and carry a big stick". To operate quietly from the inside, pulling out the supporting pins and planting the timed charges.
For the two different groups to be belittling each other, potentially affecting unity, only comes from a place of ego.
Everyone remember we're all on the same team and encourage each other to do all they can when they can. All efforts in the long run are equally important.



GS
Thanks GS. I was trying to get that concept across last night when I was posting about the fact that it's enough for a parent to put their time into raising a child to support the battle and when that child is safely grown they can go on to be the "front lines men" as well can those children.

But you said it MUCH MUCH more succinctly than I could.
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  #103  
Old 01-05-2010, 07:44 PM
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I don't think anyone here is expecting everyone to be an activist. However, when people make decisions in which prejudice can be perceived from it, it's perfectly reasonable to address it and get to the bottom of it. That is not belittling any point of view. However, at the risk of repeating myself, assuming that those without children are ignorant of the issues that surround the dynamics of a child does feel belittling.
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  #104  
Old 01-05-2010, 07:54 PM
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Originally Posted by LovingRadiance View Post
You seem to presume that because we are fighting against being labeled as something we aren't-that we aren't fighting for anyone-including ourselves. But that is a HUGE (and incorrect) assumption to make, especially when we've said otherwise.
I don't think that is the issue. The issue is when people start saying "I don't want to share a label with those people (whoever those people may be) because I don't want what I do to be in any way associated with what they do." In this conversation, those people happen to be regular people who have a different way of practicing their polyamory and who are dealing with lots of prejudice about it from outside and now apparently from inside poly communities. The choice to do that is certainly a valid choice, especially if you're reasons are to protect your rights and family, but it doesn't change the experience of prejudice that is created by such a choice. This is being addressed from the experience of that prejudice, not from some moral high horse of activism.
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  #105  
Old 01-05-2010, 07:59 PM
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Originally Posted by Ceoli View Post
I don't think anyone here is expecting everyone to be an activist. However, when people make decisions in which prejudice can be perceived from it, it's perfectly reasonable to address it and get to the bottom of it. That is not belittling any point of view. However, at the risk of repeating myself, assuming that those without children are ignorant of the issues that surround the dynamics of a child does feel belittling.
I hope this comes out right-but if it doesn't-please work with me patiently.

I can comprehend intellectually the way it feels to have my leg amputated, but unless my leg is ACTUALLY amputated-it's only conceptual.
While it's GOOD for me to work on conceptual understanding of things I don't personally experience, it's unfair to those truly suffering the experience and somewhat egotistical for me to tell someone I DO understand what they experience if I in fact haven't ever been through their situation.
EVEN if I have been through having my leg amputated, I STILL don't know exactly what THEY are going through-because I am not them. I don't have their mind, their life experience etc and therefore I don't feel exactly what they feel.

When someone with no children lectures me on my decision making-that to me is belittling. They are assuming that they know what is best in my situation, despite having no experience in my situation.

Further that to someone who doesn't even KNOW me OR my children-and it comes across as highly arrogant and presumptive.

When that is then furthered by them suggesting that I don't do enough in the way of fighting against prejudice simply because I don't personally claim a specified term to describe my situation-that leaves me disgusted.

WHY is it wrong for me to not describe myself as poly if I AM openly letting people know that I DO have a husband and boyfriend, that we DO live together and raise our children together AND I am actively out there fighting against prejudice for ALL groups that I can in our area AND I have openly supported and befriended people in those groups, including transexual, bi, gay, lesbian, black, AK native etc?

I do understand the concept that refusing to take a name as something can promote prejudice. BUT the truth is that taking a name for oneself can do the same. When a person identifies as one thing-they can promote other people's already prejudice views on anything BUT that thing.
(as in "see even so and so is blah blah blah" that proves that anything else is shit")

It is ridiculous to me that there is more focus on making everyone be NAMED the same thing-when we aren't all the same, then focusing on making ALL DIFFERENT PEOPLE under ANY NAME equal...

AND as GS said-a war isn't fought ONLY with Marines who go out in front shooting and screaming to their deaths. There's a lot of war done from behind the scenes.

When I was training to go into the military-I trained to be a sniper.. ironically what I hear in this thread (and across the whole forum recently) is that a sniper is useless. In fact oft times a sniper saves the asses of the troops stomping through the woods noisily behind him/her. Just because the sniper doesn't make as much noise-does NOT minimize their importance NOR does it mean that they aren't 100% involved and taking a huge risk for the war.

There seems to be an attitude on here that if we aren't all Marines, we're the enemy. Besides raising my eyebrow-that offends me as I know it's not true.

That doesn't even touch on the fact that in truth we don't personally know each other-so we can't really say that any one person isnt actually a "marine on special duty".. ...

Geez-and that brings in the whole "special ops" who can't TELL ANYONE who/what/where/when they are! Those guys don't count either? The ones who have to keep a REALLY f'ing low profile in order to infiltrate the "enemy camp" and fight the battle "from the enemy's side" by sending back useful info to the troops????
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  #106  
Old 01-05-2010, 08:06 PM
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Originally Posted by Ceoli View Post
I don't think that is the issue. The issue is when people start saying "I don't want to share a label with those people (whoever those people may be) because I don't want what I do to be in any way associated with what they do." In this conversation, those people happen to be regular people who have a different way of practicing their polyamory and who are dealing with lots of prejudice about it from outside and now apparently from inside poly communities. The choice to do that is certainly a valid choice, especially if you're reasons are to protect your rights and family, but it doesn't change the experience of prejudice that is created by such a choice. This is being addressed from the experience of that prejudice, not from some moral high horse of activism.
Ceoli-I guess my issue is this. I'm a woman, but I'm not black.
I'm not going to call myself black. I'm not.

BUT-my daughter IS part white-part Puerto Rican.
She refers to herself as white.
She LOOKS white and she doesn't want any "special treatment" for being technically Puerto Rican.
That doesn't mean she's promoting a prejudice towards Puerto Ricans.
That can't be decided until one actually knows her and how she lives her life.
She's more than happy and willing to actively fight for the rights of "her people". But you couldn't know that if the only thing asked was if she chooses to self-identify as Puerto Rican.

Likewise-I prefer definitive understanding of a word-before using it.

Polyamory-seriously LACKS definitive understanding of it's meaning.
As does CHRISTIAN.
Therefore I don't prefer to use either to self-identify. If I have to explain what I am ANYWAY-I'd rather just do that, instead of prefacing the explanation with a word that my listener doesn't comprehend anyway.

Which-is what I have been saying all along.

I don't care WHAT the meaning is-I just don't wish to self-identify using a term that doesn't HAVE an agreed upon meaning.

How is that promoting prejudice?
If the people who use the word can't say what the hell it functionally means-only conceptually, what use is it anyway?

How is promoting myself as loving two men simultaneously, respectfully and openly in anyway promoting prejudice against someone who identifies as poly (or someone who identifies as mono for that matter?)
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  #107  
Old 01-05-2010, 08:24 PM
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Originally Posted by LovingRadiance View Post
I can comprehend intellectually the way it feels to have my leg amputated, but unless my leg is ACTUALLY amputated-it's only conceptual.
While it's GOOD for me to work on conceptual understanding of things I don't personally experience, it's unfair to those truly suffering the experience and somewhat egotistical for me to tell someone I DO understand what they experience if I in fact haven't ever been through their situation.
EVEN if I have been through having my leg amputated, I STILL don't know exactly what THEY are going through-because I am not them. I don't have their mind, their life experience etc and therefore I don't feel exactly what they feel.
I specifically said earlier in this thread that I certainly cannot understand the EXPERIENCE of having a child. I was speaking to the issues that surround having a child and the presumption that any of us who are looking at this from outside are ignorant of such issues. It has been repeatedly acknowledged in this thread that having a child to protect when dealing with all these issues is incredibly important. And while it may not be right for you as a parent to be all activist about it, I can certainly point to other parents for whom it was very right to be an activist, as a way to protect their children. But it has been REPEATEDLY said in this that BOTH choices are valid.


Quote:
When someone with no children lectures me on my decision making-that to me is belittling. They are assuming that they know what is best in my situation, despite having no experience in my situation.

Further that to someone who doesn't even KNOW me OR my children-and it comes across as highly arrogant and presumptive.
I apologize if speaking of the effect that your decisions have on others is lecturing. I don't think anyone was speaking about questioning that what you're doing is best for your children.

I will say, however, that as a teacher who has worked directly with social services in more than a few occasions, there certainly ARE times when a parent needs to be questioned for the sake of the well being of the child. Nobody was suggesting this in any of the cases in this thread.

Quote:
When that is then furthered by them suggesting that I don't do enough in the way of fighting against prejudice simply because I don't personally claim a specified term to describe my situation-that leaves me disgusted.

WHY is it wrong for me to not describe myself as poly if I AM openly letting people know that I DO have a husband and boyfriend, that we DO live together and raise our children together AND I am actively out there fighting against prejudice for ALL groups that I can in our area AND I have openly supported and befriended people in those groups, including transexual, bi, gay, lesbian, black, AK native etc?
Nobody was suggesting that you HAVE to fight or be activists or even openly use the specific word poly. All I've been addressing is that certain choices (for whatever VALID reasons they are made) further contribute to prejudices that are being experienced by others.


Quote:
There seems to be an attitude on here that if we aren't all Marines, we're the enemy. Besides raising my eyebrow-that offends me as I know it's not true.
Clearly our viewpoints are causing us to see different attitudes then. I don't see this attitude you describe. I do, however see an attitude that people who choose to be activists or even openly sex-positive are somehow couched in theory and aren't in touch with the day to day realities of having a poly family.

I'm willing to bet neither of these views is actually what's happening.

However, the prejudice is certainly very real. I don't see finding a solution that helps EVERYONE if we continue to either ignore this prejudice or say that prejudice is ok as long as there's a kid to protect.

I honestly don't think people who are choosing not to take up arms are saying prejudice is ok and as I and others have said repeatedly in this thread, it's a VALID CHOICE to not take up arms. But it is completely fair to question the active rejection of other people's poly life by choosing to disassociate and to discuss the prejudice that produces.
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  #108  
Old 01-05-2010, 08:45 PM
Ceoli Ceoli is offline
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Originally Posted by LovingRadiance View Post
BUT-my daughter IS part white-part Puerto Rican.
She refers to herself as white.
She LOOKS white and she doesn't want any "special treatment" for being technically Puerto Rican.
That doesn't mean she's promoting a prejudice towards Puerto Ricans.
That can't be decided until one actually knows her and how she lives her life.
She's more than happy and willing to actively fight for the rights of "her people". But you couldn't know that if the only thing asked was if she chooses to self-identify as Puerto Rican.
If she chooses not to self-identify as Puerto Rican because she doesn't feel that identity, then that's definitely a valid choice for her. If she chooses to not identify as Puerto Rican because lots of Puerto Ricans are drug dealers or in gangs and she doesn't want to be seen with that, then I have several Puerto Rican friends that would have something to say about that. (I'm not saying that this is what she's doing, I'm just illustrating the analogy)

Quote:
Likewise-I prefer definitive understanding of a word-before using it.

Polyamory-seriously LACKS definitive understanding of it's meaning.
As does CHRISTIAN.
Therefore I don't prefer to use either to self-identify. If I have to explain what I am ANYWAY-I'd rather just do that, instead of prefacing the explanation with a word that my listener doesn't comprehend anyway.

Which-is what I have been saying all along.
The thing is, both polyamory and Christianity have pretty clear definitions. We as a society for whatever reason have decided to merge EXAMPLES of the definition with the actual DEFINITION itself. We also seem to think that because lots of people misunderstand the definition, that there isn't a clear one. The same thing happened with the word polygamy. I prefer to dispel the misunderstanding rather than contribute to it by saying that the word doesn't apply to me because of the misunderstandings of the word, not the actual word itself.

The thing is, choosing not to use the specific word ISN'T the issue. It's choosing to take on the same assumptions around that word that most of the non poly world takes on that causes problems for everyone.

Just the other day, someone told me that they couldn't be poly because they're not promiscuous. I spent some time explaining that being promiscuous isn't the definition of what it is to be poly. Sure there could be poly people who are promiscuous and proud of it. (There are lots of monogamous people who are as well). But I won't say that I'm not one of THEM because I'm not promiscuous. I'm just going to say that we both practice it a different way.


Quote:
I don't care WHAT the meaning is-I just don't wish to self-identify using a term that doesn't HAVE an agreed upon meaning.
I wonder how many words that describe identity truly have an agreed upon meaning across cultures. I'm willing to bet not many. It's just what cultures assume to be behind that. Society has always progressed by dispelling assumptions, not by enabling them.


Quote:
How is that promoting prejudice?
If the people who use the word can't say what the hell it functionally means-only conceptually, what use is it anyway?

How is promoting myself as loving two men simultaneously, respectfully and openly in anyway promoting prejudice against someone who identifies as poly (or someone who identifies as mono for that matter?)
By saying I love two men in a secure healthy loving relationship but I don't identify as poly because I'm not promiscuous like those poly people (this is just an example) I am promoting the idea that identifying as poly means being promiscuous. In such, I'm actively working against the clear definition that already exists.

Last edited by Ceoli; 01-05-2010 at 08:48 PM.
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  #109  
Old 01-05-2010, 09:20 PM
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Originally Posted by Ceoli View Post
I do, however see an attitude that people who choose to be activists or even openly sex-positive are somehow couched in theory and aren't in touch with the day to day realities of having a poly family.
Based on my experiences, I have seen some activists who have a lot of real-world experience, can speak to it and teach others from that. I have also seen others that have no practical experience, are couched in theory and aren't in touch with the day-to-day realities of a poly family. That statement is not a value-judgement in any way.

I don't see any correlation between sex-positivity and experience (or lack thereof). I have seen plenty of the various extremes of those.

There. One data point, based on my limited experience, for what it's worth.
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  #110  
Old 01-05-2010, 10:01 PM
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ceoli-I was responding and my whole system crashed. SOOOOO I'm starting over.
Didn't want you to think I ran off pissed or whatever.
(ok-I was pissed-but at the computer, not you!)
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