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川普的支持者经常受到的指责就是他们生活在”另类事实”中,有着脱离现实的看法,可是,只要你要对美国的左翼运动有所了解,你会发现美国的”进步人士”持有的想法同样荒唐,甚至更加荒唐。两者的区别在于,川普的支持者通常把信任都寄托在川普本人身上,以一位政治家的观点为正确的准绳,而”进步人士”则是经常把商业媒体视为真相的裁决者,如果商业媒体打算攻击某个人或某个组织,那么作为它支持者的”左翼进步人士”就会充满义愤地对该对象进行辱骂和骚扰,而从不去思考商业媒体说的是真相还是谎言。川普支持者不相信媒体,很大程度上也正是因为主流媒体本身不值得信任了,然而以政治家的个人言论为真相的这种做法,其危险程度丝毫不逊于以媒体为真相。

我在这里当然不是说,”两边都一样,因此现状不存在改善的可能性”,我的看法是,要走出目前的困境,媒体需要重拾职业道德,左派需要彻底的重生。

错別字:”犯错的权力”应改为”犯错的权利”

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替巨头企业审查(Big Tech Censorship)和取消文化(Cancel Culture)辩护的人经常提出这样一种观点:(第一修正案所规定的)言论自由限制的只是政府,而不是团体和组织,而且言论自由也并不意味着你可以免于批评或免于承担后果,因此,如果某人遭到了政府以外机构或团体的审查,抵制,或者”取消”,他的言论自由并未受到侵犯。


这种观点所暗示的是,言论自由的合法性来自于且仅来自于法律,在法律规定的范围之外,团体和组织对言论自由的限制和封杀就是合理的。


但言论自由,作为人们的一项基本权利,真的是法律所授予的吗?如果某个独裁政党上台,修改了法律呢?如果一些自命正义的人士控制了立法,而他们认为自由应该让位于正义呢?是不是这就意味着言论自由不是一项权利呢?


对于这一个问题,启蒙主义早已给出了答案,那就是人的自然权利要优先于具体的法律条文,人权作为“人类天生要享有的权利”,并不是宪法赋予的,宪法的作用仅仅是保障和实现人权的一种手段。正如《独立宣言》中说到的那样:


我们认为下面这些真理不言而喻:人人生而平等,造物主赋予他们若干不可剥夺的权利,其中包括生命权、自由权和追求幸福的权利。正是为了保障这些权利,人们才在他们之间建立政府,而政府之正当权力,则来自被统治者的同意。任何形式的政府,只要破坏上述目的,人民就有权利改变或废除它,并建立新政府。


也就是说,人的基本权利是与生俱来的,是造物主赋予他们的,人的自然权利本身,要优先于人们为保护这些权利所做出的制度安排。至于具体的法律,人们在制定它的时候,总是要反复推敲,考虑其可行性的。第一修正案只对政府做限制,我想更大程度上是因为它在现实中可以操作,如果它连非政府组织也要管的话,一是不现实,二是会损害人们的其它权利,例如自由结社的权利。可是,虽然第一修正案没有对政府以外的领域进行规定,但这并不表明在这些领域中言论自由权就是不存在的。第一修正案没有对这些领域进行规定,不代表在这些领域中言论自由无关紧要,恰恰相反,这正好表明了在这些领域中,言论自由更需要人们的争取和捍卫,因为”自由的代价就是永远保持警惕”
既然法律管不了,那么自由就只有靠民众自觉的捍卫。政府管制固然是对自由的一大威胁,但公众舆论、道德习俗对自由的威胁,也就是约翰·密尔说的”习俗的暴政”,同样不可轻视。 如果在民间社会中言论自由的精神不再被坚守,那么再好的法律也无法保护言论自由的权利。正如孟德斯鸠在《论法的精神》中说的:”政体的原则一旦腐化,最好的法律也会变坏,成为对国家有害的法律。但是当原则健全的时候,即使是不好的法律也会产生好的法律效果;原则的力量能够带动一切事物。” 言论自由,作为现代民主制度的核心价值,远非是法律条文上的规定那么简单。


那么言论自由是否不意味着你可以免于批评或免于承担后果呢?当然不是!因为自由是所有人的自由,每个人都有批判或赞扬的权利,我无意否认这一点。但是我的确认为,基于理性和证据的文明讨论,要远远地好于煽动情绪的断章取义,和掩盖事实的恶意中伤。


言论自由当然也不意味着所有的言论可以免于承担后果。问题在于,这里的”后果”指的具体是什么?如果某人刻意地散播关于另一个人的谣言,对另一个人造成了明显的经济损失,或者向外国散播本国的军事情报,那么他当然应该受到法律的制裁。可以如果某个人只是真实地表达了自己与正统意见不同的看法,就要被媒体和社交封杀,丢掉自己的工作,那么这无疑是对言论自由的无耻攻击。我不认为所有言论都可以免于承担后果,但我的确认为,任何人都不应该因为持有异端思想而被封杀。寡头企业与觉悟左派是当代言论自由的大敌,捍卫言论自由即意味着与这两者作战。

@jrballesteros05 @fsf

> Tell me officially RMS is back

I suppose it is official because his name is included here, scroll down to the bottom of the page:

fsf.org/about/staff-and-board/

Luckily, another co-author on the book has spent a lot of time pondering inclusion, women’s rights, children’s rights, and free speech. Her name is Nadine Strossen and her credentials run deep. She served as the first female President of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), America’s largest and oldest civil liberties nonprofit, from 1991 to 2008. When she stepped down as President, three Supreme Court Justices participated in her farewell luncheon (Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Antonin Scalia, and David Souter). Strossen is a Professor Emeritus at New York Law School and currently an advisor to the EPIC (Electronic Privacy Information Center), FIRE (Foundation for Individual Rights in Education), the ACLU, and Heterodox Academy. She is the author of the widely acclaimed books HATE: Why we should fight it with speech not censorship (2018) and Defending Pornography: Free Speech, Sex, and the Fight for Women’s Rights (1995). She has far too many awards, publications, and prominent appearances to name.


I talked with her to explain the dilemma and get her thoughts.


Civil Rights Activist Nadine Strossen’s Response To :


I find it so odd that the strong zeal for revenge and punishment if someone says anything that is perceived to be sexist or racist or discriminatory comes from liberals and progressives. There are so many violations [in cases like Stallman’s] of such fundamental principles to which progressives and liberals cling in general as to what is justice, what is fairness, what is due process.


One is proportionality: that the punishment should be proportional to the offense. Another one is restorative justice: that rather than retribution and punishment, we should seek to have the person constructively come to understand, repent, and make amends for an infraction. Liberals generally believe society to be too punitive, too harsh, not forgiving enough. They are certainly against the death penalty and other harsh punishments even for the most violent, the mass murderers. Progressives are right now advocating for the release of criminals, even murderers. To then have exactly the opposite attitude towards something that certainly is not committing physical violence against somebody, I don’t understand the double standard!


Another cardinal principle is we shouldn’t have any guilt by association. [To hold culpable] these board members who were affiliated with him and ostensibly didn’t do enough to punish him for things that he said - which by the way were completely separate from the Free Software Foundation - is multiplying the problems of unwarranted punishment. It extends the punishment where the argument for responsibility and culpability becomes thinner and thinner to the vanishing point. That is also going to have an enormous adverse impact on the freedom of association, which is an important right protected in the U.S. by the First Amendment.


The Supreme Court has upheld freedom of association in cases involving organizations that were at the time highly controversial. It started with NAACP (National Association for the Advancement of Colored People) during the civil rights movement in the 1950s and 60s, but we have a case that’s going to the Supreme Court right now regarding Black Lives Matter. The Supreme Court says even if one member of the group does commit a crime - in both of those cases physical violence and assault - that is not a justification for punishing other members of the group unless they specifically intended to participate in the particular punishable conduct.


Now, let’s assume for the sake of argument, Stallman had an attitude that was objectively described as discriminatory on the basis on race and gender (and by the way I have seen nothing to indicate that), that he’s an unrepentant misogynist, who really believes women are inferior. We are not going to correct those ideas, to enlighten him towards rejecting them and deciding to treat women as equals through a punitive approach! The only approach that could possibly work is an educational one! Engaging in speech, dialogue, discussion and leading him to re-examine his own ideas.


Even if I strongly disagree with a position or an idea, an expression of an idea, advocacy of an idea, and even if the vast majority of the public disagrees with the idea and finds it offensive, that is not a justification for suppressing the idea. And it’s not a justification for taking away the equal rights of the person who espouses that idea including the right to continue holding a tenured position or other prominent position for which that person is qualified.


But a number of the ideas for which Richard Stallman has been attacked and punished are ideas that I as a feminist advocate of human rights find completely correct and positive from the perspective of women’s equality and dignity! So for example, when he talks about the misuse and over use and flawed use of the term sexual assault, I completely agree with that critique! People are indiscriminantly using that term or synonyms to describe everything from the most appaulling violent abuse of helpless vulnerable victims (such as a rape of a minor) to any conduct or expression in the realm of gender or sexuality that they find unpleasant or disagreeable.


So we see the term sexual assault and sexual harrassment used for example, when a guy asks a woman out on a date and she doesn’t find that an appealing invitation. Maybe he used poor judgement in asking her out, maybe he didn’t, but in any case that is NOT sexual assault or harassment. To call it that is to really demean the huge horror and violence and predation that does exist when you are talking about violent sexual assault. People use the term sexual assault/ sexual harassment to refer to any comment about gender or sexuality issues that they disagree with or a joke that might not be in the best taste, again is that to be commended? No! But to condemn it and equate it with a violent sexual assault again is really denying and demeaning the actual suffering that people who are victims of sexual assault endure. It trivializes the serious infractions that are committed by people like Jeffrey Epstein and Harvey Weinstein. So that is one point that he made that I think is very important that I strongly agree with.


Secondly and relatedly, [Richard Stallman] never said that he endorse child pornography, which by definition the United States Supreme Court has defined it multiple times is the sexual exploitation of an actual minor. Coerced, forced, sexual activity by that minor, with that minor that happens to be filmed or photographed. That is the definition of child pornography. He never defends that! What the point he makes, a very important one, which the U.S. Supreme Court has also made, is mainly that we overuse and distort the term child pornography to refer to any depiction of any minor in any context that is even vaguely sexual.


So some people have not only denounced as child pornography but prosecuted and jailed loving devoted parents who committed the crime of taking a nude or semi-nude picture of their own child in a bathtub or their own child in a bathing suit. Again it is the hysteria that has totally refused to draw an absolutely critical distinction between actual violence and abuse, which is criminal and should be criminal, to any potentially sexual depiction of a minor. And I say potentially because I think if you look at a picture a parent has taken of a child in a bathtub and you see that as sexual, then I’d say there’s something in your perspective that might be questioned or challenged! But don’t foist that upon the parent who is lovingly documenting their beloved child’s life and activities without seeing anything sexual in that image.


This is a decision that involves line drawing. We tend to have this hysteria where once we hear terms like pedophilia of course you are going to condemn anything that could possibly have that label. Of course you would. But societies around the world throughout history various cultures and various religions and moral positions have disagreed about at what age do you respect the autonomy and individuality and freedom of choice of a young person around sexuality. And the U.S. Supreme Court held that in a case involving minors right to choose to have an abortion.


By the way, [contraception and abortion] is a realm of sexuality where liberals and progressives and feminists have been saying, “Yes! If you’re old enough to have sex. You should have the right to contraception and access to it. You should have the right to have an abortion. You shouldn’t have to consult with your parents and have their permission or a judge’s permission because you’re sufficiently mature.” And the Supreme Court sided in accord of that position. The U.S. Supreme Court said constitutional rights do not magically mature and spring into being only when someone happens to attain the state defined age of majority.


In other words the constitution doesn’t prevent anyone from exercising rights, including Rights and sexual freedoms, freedom of choice and autonomy at a certain age! And so you can’t have it both ways. You can’t say well we’re strongly in favor of minors having the right to decide what to do with their own bodies, to have an abortion - what is in some people’s minds murder - but we’re not going to trust them to decide to have sex with somewhat older than they are.


And I say somewhat older than they are because that’s something where the law has also been subject to change. On all issues of when you obtain the age of majority, states differ on that widely and they choose different ages for different activities. When you’re old enough to drive, to have sex with someone around your age, to have sex with someone much older than you. There is no magic objective answer to these questions. I think people need to take seriously the importance of sexual freedom and autonomy and that certainly includes women, feminists. They have to take seriously the question of respecting a young person’s autonomy in that area.


There have been famous cases of 18 year olds who have gone to prison because they had consensual sex with their girlfriends who were a couple of years younger. A lot of people would not consider that pedophilia and yet under some strict laws and some absolute definitions it is. Romeo and Juliet laws make an exception to pedophilia laws when there is only a relatively small age difference. But what is relatively small? So to me, especially when he says he is re-examining his position, Stallman is just thinking through the very serious debate of how to be protective and respectful of young people. He is not being disrespectful, much less wishing harm upon young people, which seems to be what his detractors think he’s doing.

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Hannah Wolfman-Jones,《System Override: How Bitcoin, Blockchain, Free Speech & Free Tech Can Change Everything》的作者之一,在We The Web的网站上,对Richard Stallman事件的始未进行了清楚详细的阐述,并与民权活动家,ACLU的首位女性领袖,Nadine Strossen,共同对Richard Stallman进行了辩护。《System Override》这本书由Hannah Wolfman-Jones,Nadine Strossen和Richard Stallman共著而成。wetheweb.org/post/cancel-we-th 这篇文章是Hannah Wolfman-Jones与Nadine Strossen在该网站上对Richard Stallman事件做出的正式回应。

这篇文章值得一读。

在再次阅读原始邮件后,我感到我需要修正一下我的描述:

Richard Stallman的看法并不是Virginia自愿与Marvin Minsky性交,而是说Virginia受到了胁迫,但Marvin Minsky对此未必知情


(All I know she said about Minsky is that Epstein directed her to have sex with Minsky. That does not say whether Minsky knew that she was coerced. It does not report what each said and did during their sexual encounter. We can imagine various scenarios.

We know that Giuffre was being coerced into sex – by Epstein. She was being harmed. But the details do affect whether, and to what extent, Minsky was responsible for that. )


我第一次浏览邮件时其实看到了这段话,但再次翻阅时却没找到,所以遗漏了这段话,因此我匆匆地根据( We can imagine many scenarios, but the most plausible scenario is that »> she presented herself to him as entirely willing. Assuming she was being coerced by Epstein, he would have had every reason to tell her »> to conceal that from most of his associates. )这句话得出了不正确的结论。这里的presented herself指的应该是表面装作自愿。


修正之后的事件始末是:2019年,有人发现MIT暗中接受了爱泼斯坦的捐赠,而爱泼斯坦是一个著名的性罪犯,因此,MIT CSAIL的人员便在内部邮件的讨论串中对此展开了抗议,在讨论的过程中,话题发生了转向,内容变成了已故的MIT教授Marvin Minsky是否也性侵犯了爱泼斯坦的受害者,一些人认为Marvin Minsky的确性侵犯了了爱泼斯坦的受害者,理由是Virginia Louise声明爱泼斯坦指使了她与Marvin Minsky性交(当时她只有17岁),而Richard Stallman则不这么认为,他认为”性侵犯”一词过于模糊和随意,而且”侵犯”意味着强迫与暴力,Stallman设想了许多场景,他认为最可能的情况是Virginia装作自愿与Marvin Minsky性交的,Marvin Minsky自身未必知晓。 有人向Stallman质疑,Virginia未满18岁,还没有到能够自己做决定的法定年龄,Stallman则回应道,用年龄或地理位置来判定是不是强奸是十分荒诞的。


其余需要修正的推论:


对于原始材料分析后,我们可以看到,首先,Richard Stallman辩护的对象是Marvin Minsky,而不是爱泼斯坦。其次,Richard Stallman 的确主张Virginia是自愿的,不过这里的自愿指的是Virginia对Marvin Minsky的自愿(究竟是不是自愿,不在当前的讨论范围内,因为现在讨论的问题是Richard Stallman对该事件的反应,而非该事件的详细过程),他认为,既然是自愿的,那么不论两者的年龄差距有多大,不论当事人有没有到达法定的能独立做出决定的年龄,双方就可以性交。


这一段应改成:


对于原始材料分析后,我们可以看到,首先,Richard Stallman辩护的对象是Marvin Minsky,而不是爱泼斯坦。其次,Richard Stallman 并不主张Virginia是自愿的,而是认为Virginia展示得像是自愿,Marvin Minsky未必知情(究竟是不是知情),不在当前的讨论范围内,因为现在讨论的问题是Richard Stallman对该事件的反应,而非该事件的详细过程),他认为,既然Marvin Minsky很可能是在不知道Virginia受强迫的情况下与其性交,并且Marvin Minsky没有强迫Virginal,那么Marvin Minsky便算不上强奸。


还有这两段


如果Richard Stallman真的认为Virginia是自愿的,那么Richard Stallman实际上就是在认为自愿优先于保护。我不认同他的这种看法,并且能想出许多反向观点,例如未成年人的自愿很可能是缺少考虑的自愿,而且经济上的困境可能会导致一种名为自愿实为被迫的情况,但是我并不认为拥有Stallman这种观点的人就一定道德败坏,而且,我认为解决这种争端的最佳方案是鼓励沟通与辩论,而不是让少数人或少数团体一锤定音。


如果Richard Stallman并不真的认为Virginia是自愿的,即Richard Stallman根本是在口是心非,他明明知道Virginia是被迫的,却装作认为她是自愿的,Stallman所说的自愿原则是骗人的,他自己都不相信这一点。这种可能性也不是不存在,但这是一个不可证伪的假设,而且缺少依据。因为Richard Stallman很早就持有类似的主张,而不是突然改变了想法。例如,2003年英国曾试图制定一个新的审查法律,该法律将禁止任何关于儿童与青少年的性描写,并且禁止鼓励14岁以下的人参与性活动,Richard Stallman则认为14岁就应该可以性交了,青春期的性交值得鼓励。


它们应改成:


如果Richard Stallman真的认为Marvin Minsky没有强迫Virginia,那么他就是认为一个人在未强迫对方,且不知道对方被强迫的情况下与另一个人性交,不能算作强奸,即便对方未成年。这种说法在逻辑上说的通,但不怎么符合人的常识,但我依然不认为拥有Stallman这种观点的人就一定道德败坏,Stallman应有提出反对意见的权利,而且,我依然认为解决这种争端的最佳方案是鼓励沟通与辩论,而不是让少数人或少数团体一锤定音。


如果Richard Stallman并不真的认为Marvin Minsky没有强迫Virginia,即他明明知道Marvin Minsky强迫了后者,却装作不知道,这种可能性也不是不存在,但这是一个不可证伪的假设,而且我找不到Richard Stallman为一个死去五年的教授辩护有什么功利的动机,我认为更大的可能是Richard Stallman已经习惯于口无遮拦了,因此在这一事件上也口无遮拦地表达了自己的看法。


还有这一段:


正如我在之前已经说过的,媒体对Richard Stallman进行了不实的报道,在2019年的那场事件中,他并没有替爱泼斯坦进行辩护,而是就Marvin Minsky受到的指控提出了反面观点,他的依据是自愿即可性交,即便未到法定年龄,这是与他此前的言论相一致的,尽管在该事件之后他又该变了看法。 我不认同他的观点,但是他的观点在一个自由的社会中应当有存在的余地,辩论和沟通才是问题的解决之道。


应该改成:


正如我在之前已经说过的,媒体对Richard Stallman进行了不实的报道,在2019年的那场事件中,他并没有替爱泼斯坦进行辩护,而是就Marvin Minsky受到的指控提出了反面观点,他的依据是一个人在未强迫对方,且不知道对方被强迫的情况下与另一个人性交,不能算作强奸。在我看来,他的观点比较脱离现实,但是他的观点在一个自由的社会中依然应当有存在的余地,辩论和沟通才是问题的解决之道。

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在Richard Stallman 事件中我的观点



我此前关注的主要是Richard Stallman对于自由软件的看法,对于他的私生活并没有太多关注,但近期围绕着Richard Stallman是否可以重返FSF(自由软件基金)的争论使得我开始主动地去了解这一问题的始末。根据我在互联网上搜寻到的资料,我可以概括出以下几点内容。


1.Richard Stallman 创立了FSF(自由软件基金),是自由软件运动的发起者。


2.在2019年一场与爱泼斯坦有关的事件中,Richard Stallman受到压力被迫从FSF辞职。


3.2021年三月,Richard Stallman宣布他将重返FSF,这一举动再次受到了抵制,包括 Mozilla 和 the Tor Project在内的1500人发布了一张联名公开信,信中主要有两个诉求,第一个诉求是解散整个现有的FSF委员会 ,第二个诉求是解除Richard Stallman的一切领导地位,并且禁止他日后加入任何领导层,包括Gnu。此外,该信还要求Richard Stallman 不再参加与自由软件,技术道德,数据权利相关的活动,并退出技术社区。(rms-open-letter.github.io/)

Richard Stallman 所受到的指控:



Richard Stallman受到的指控围绕在两个内容上:他在MIT内部邮件中的言论,以及他的个人私生活,主要是认为他言行不当,并在私下中对女性有骚扰行为。


值得注意的一点是,对于Richard Stallman指控的具体内容一直在变,在2019年9月14日Vice对此展开报道的时候,所用的标题是《Famed Computer Scientist Richard Stallman Described Epstein Victims As ‘Entirely Willing’》(著名的计算机科学家Richard Stallman将爱泼斯坦的受害者描述成’完全自愿的’)(vice.com/en/article/9ke3ke/fam),然而几天后Techcrunch在报道这一事件时,标题就变成了
《Computer scientist Richard Stallman, who defended Jeffrey Epstein, resigns from MIT CSAIL and the Free Software Foundation》(替爱泼斯坦辩护的计算机科学家Richard Stallman从MIT CSAIL和FSF辞职)(techcrunch.com/2019/09/16/comp),到了Mozilla 和 the Tor Project的公开信中,指控则变成了”He has shown himself to be misogynist, ableist, and transphobic, among other serious accusations of impropriety” (Richard Stallman证明了他是一个厌女主义者,健全主义者,恐同主义者,此外还有着其它的严重不当言行)


这些标题给人的感觉就是Richard Stallman在替爱泼斯坦的恶行辩护,认为爱泼斯坦的受害者是自愿被爱泼斯坦害的。真的是这样吗?


要弄明白这一点,我们需要找到原始材料,看看Richard Stallman倒底说了什么,原始材料可以在 vice 这篇报道的底部找到,是MIT内部的邮件记录。(vice.com/en/article/9ke3ke/fam)


事情的起因是,2019年,有人发现MIT暗中接受了爱泼斯坦的捐赠,而爱泼斯坦是一个著名的性罪犯,因此,MIT CSAIL的人员便在内部邮件的讨论串中对此展开了抗议,在讨论的过程中,话题发生了转向,内容变成了已故的MIT教授Marvin Minsky是否也性侵犯了爱泼斯坦的受害者,一些人认为Marvin Minsky的确性侵犯了了爱泼斯坦的受害者,理由是Virginia Louise声明爱泼斯坦指使了她与Marvin Minsky性交(当时她只有17岁),而Richard Stallman则不这么认为,他认为”性侵犯”一词过于模糊和随意,而且”侵犯”意味着强迫与暴力,Stallman设想了许多场景,他认为最可能的情况是Virginia是自愿与Marvin Minsky性交的,没有证据表明她受到了强迫。有人向Stallman质疑,Virginia未满18岁,还没有到能够自己做决定的法定年龄,Stallman则回应道,用年龄或地理位置来判定是不是强奸是十分荒诞的。事情的经过大概是这样,对于这一事件,中英文的维基百科都有简要的描述,大体上与原始的邮件记录相符。


对于原始材料分析后,我们可以看到,首先,Richard Stallman辩护的对象是Marvin Minsky,而不是爱泼斯坦。其次,Richard Stallman 的确主张Virginia是自愿的,不过这里的自愿指的是Virginia对Marvin Minsky的自愿(究竟是不是自愿,不在当前的讨论范围内,因为现在讨论的问题是Richard Stallman对该事件的反应,而非该事件的详细过程),他认为,既然是自愿的,那么不论两者的年龄差距有多大,不论当事人有没有到达法定的能独立做出决定的年龄,双方就可以性交。


如果Richard Stallman真的认为Virginia是自愿的,那么Richard Stallman实际上就是在认为自愿优先于保护。我不认同他的这种看法,并且能想出许多反向观点,例如未成年人的自愿很可能是缺少考虑的自愿,而且经济上的困境可能会导致一种名为自愿实为被迫的情况,但是我并不认为拥有Stallman这种观点的人就一定道德败坏,而且,我认为解决这种争端的最佳方案是鼓励沟通与辩论,而不是让少数人或少数团体一锤定音。


如果Richard Stallman并不真的认为Virginia是自愿的,即Richard Stallman根本是在口是心非,他明明知道Virginia是被迫的,却装作认为她是自愿的,Stallman所说的自愿原则是骗人的,他自己都不相信这一点。这种可能性也不是不存在,但这是一个不可证伪的假设,而且缺少依据。因为Richard Stallman很早就持有类似的主张,而不是突然改变了想法。例如,2003年英国曾试图制定一个新的审查法律,该法律将禁止任何关于儿童与青少年的性描写,并且禁止鼓励14岁以下的人参与性活动,Richard Stallman则认为14岁就应该可以性交了,青春期的性交值得鼓励。


由此可见,媒体对Richard Stallman的报道确实有不少扭曲,Richard Stallman辩护的是Marvin Minsky,到了媒体的嘴里就成了辩护爱泼斯坦,Vice最初报道的标题就有误导之嫌,随后的Techcrunch更是直接把标题改成了”Stallman替爱泼斯坦辩护” 。到了 Mozilla 和 the Tor Project,对Richard Stallman的指控则发展成了”一个厌女主义者,健全主义者,恐同主义者”。Richard Stallman说媒体对他报道不实,确实是有根据的。


对于Richard Stallman的另一指控就是他骚扰女性,这一指控的来源应该是MIT学生Selam G 在Medium上的一篇文章(selamjie.medium.com/remove-ric),Selam G可能是汉族人,因为她在文中提到了她母亲教育她要”吃苦”,Selam G在这篇文章中写道,Richard Stallman经常对女学生表白,有一次他在吃完饭后突然就对一个女学生说,如果她不和自己一起出去的话,他就会自杀。此外,他还把床垫放在办公室的地板上,把门大开,许多的女学生因此都绕道而行。这篇文章的最大问题就在于没有证据,正如作者自己承认的:”In this section, I acknowledge that I do not have as many photos, emails, or written records as evidence. I do, however, have witnesses.” 这篇文章中所描述的事件并没有客观事实为证,甚至都不是作者的一手经历,而是她的朋友告诉她的。因此,就我目前看到的材料而言,认为Richard Stallman骚扰女性的这一指控是很可疑的。

开除Richard Stallman会带来哪些影响?



如果我们采用 Mozilla 之类的机构和媒体的官方说法,开除Richard Stallman是一个正义之举,因为Richard Stallman是一个不道德的人,而思想左倾,一身正气的左派学生和Mozilla这样富有觉悟的公司则是道德的化身,好人打败了坏人,结果自然是正义的胜利,而且,据说自由软件运动之所以不温不火,就是因为Richard Stallman这种人把外人吓跑了,如果FSF的领导层换成正义斗士,自由软件运动就很可能遍地开花。


我不这么认为,相反,正如身份政治在西方的实际影响是减少了公民的自由,使得工人运动四分五裂一样,同样的这一套左翼觉悟政治会毁掉自由软件运动。Richard Stallman被封杀的实际作用是使人事权转移到封杀了他的那一群人手中,Richard Stallman下台后,取代他的下一位领袖势必要小心警慎,因为那一群人能封杀掉Stallman,当然就也能封杀掉他,人事权是一项很大的权力,一但这种权力被一群无法追责,自命正义的人士所掌控,这些群体便会利用这种权力强制施行自己的意志。如果大家认真地阅读了那篇公开信的话,便会发现他们的诉求并不仅仅是封杀掉Richard Stallman,而是撤掉整个领导层,撤掉之后换上什么人呢?恐怕是他们眼中的”自己人”。也许新的领导层会很”多元”,有黑人,有女人,有变性者,有残疾人,可是他们信奉的将是同一种意识形态。


觉悟左派的意识形态可以用三个词来概括:”Diversity, Inclision, Equity”(多元,包容,均等)(m.youtube.com/watch?v=3jLNgLAB),所谓多元,指的是身份的多元,例如性别,种族,健康状况的多元,而不是思想的多元;所谓包容,是指人们说话时要遵守政治正确,少数群体需要”安全空间”,不能听到可能会冒犯到自己的言论;所谓均等,是指结果平等而不是法律面前人人平等,例如美国有百分之几的黑人,自由软件基金会就应该有百分之几的黑人代表。与”多元,包容,均等”三位一体相随的,还有福柯式的权力本质论,认为代表压迫势力的权力结构无形中深深地植根于社会的每一个角落,每一个例都体现了”系统化的压迫”,各种”ist”和” phobia”(Racist, Misogynist, Homophobia, Islamphobia) 都在相方设法地迫害弱势群体,因此他们需要觉悟左派的正义斗士们保护。


这种意识形态是与自由软件的精神相冲突的


自由软件的核心思想就是任何人都可以不受限制地自由使用、复制、研究、修改和分发软件,可是这意味着”极端右翼分子”,”白人至上主义者”,” 仇女主义者”,”恐同主义者”,”法西斯主义者” 也能自由使用、复制、研究、修改和分发这些软件,怎么办?要不要禁止这些人的自由?右翼分子还利用去中心化技术在Mastodon上散播无法审查的仇恨言论,会对弱势群体和少数族裔造成难以估量的伤害,要不要强迫Mastodon的使用者通过意识形态测试,或者说要从政府那里申请许可?纽约时报的Kevin Roose说加密通讯软件加剧了虚假信息的传播,所以我们要不要设计一种替政府留后门的加密算法,以帮助他们实现正义?Master和Black会激起黑人的痛苦回忆,要不要禁止这两个词出现在源码中?也许自由这一概念本身就源起于西方,代表了压迫的西方霸权主义,帝国主义,欧洲中心主义,应该把它换成别的什么名字,以体现”多元”,”平等”,”宽容”?


自由软件,说到底,关注的是人们的自由,而自由意味着所有人的自由,正如罗莎·卢森堡所言,自由是“其他人的自由”。这里说的”其他人”当然就包括了与你想法不同的人,你讨厌的人,甚至坏人。如果一群人认为像Stallman这样的人不配拥有自由,甚至仅仅是没有积极反对Stallmam的人也不配拥有自由,他们又会认为谁配拥有自由呢?这些人还会把自由当做自己的目标吗?自由软件运动还会是自由软件运动吗?还是说变成一场”觉悟运动”呢?(有人会争辩说没有人禁止Stallman的自由,可是如果一个人仅仅因为自己的言论,或者仅仅因为没有做出”正确”的表态,就要丢掉自己的职位,他就是没有自由的。而且Richard Stallman算是知名人物,封杀他起到的是一种杀鸡儆猴的效果,如果他能被封杀,更何况那些不如他那么知名的人呢?)


西方当代的觉悟政治就像病毒一样,入侵了它能渗透的每一领域:学术界,媒体行业,科研领域,左翼政党,平权运动……每当要入侵一个新领域时,它都会寻找该领域的问题,然后宣称这体现了”系统化的压迫”,再以此为理由把自己的那一派人安插进去,连基督教和无神论都不能幸免,如果自由软件运动被其渗透,我相信在短时间内它就会变成人们无法认识的模样。

替Richard Stallman的辩护



正如我在之前已经说过的,媒体对Richard Stallman进行了不实的报道,在2019年的那场事件中,他并没有替爱泼斯坦进行辩护,而是就Marvin Minsky受到的指控提出了反面观点,他的依据是自愿即可性交,即便未到法定年龄,这是与他此前的言论相一致的,尽管在该事件之后他又该变了看法。 我不认同他的观点,但是他的观点在一个自由的社会中应当有存在的余地,辩论和沟通才是问题的解决之道。


我能想象出来,实际上我已经多次看到这样的一种反驳,那就是:Richard Stallman说的轻巧,而是他不知道自己的言论在客观对受害者会造成多大的伤害,这些伤害虽然是间接的,却同样地不可容忍。换句话说,如果某种言论在”客观”上会损害正义的事业,这种言论就不配拥有自由。


说这些话的人从来都没有想到过,同样的逻辑也可以适用他们自己。


二战期间的英国,一个记者在论坛报上发表了一篇对苏联进行抨击的文章,引发了刊然大波,许多人愤怒地写信,斥责他是傻瓜和骗子,还暗示道,即便他知道自己所说的是真相也应该缄口不语,因为这会损害英苏关系。乔治·奥威尔注意到了这一现象,为此特地写了一篇文章,他写道:


“如果你把世界划分为甲方和乙方两个阵营,假定甲方代表了进步,而乙方代表了反动,有人会说,任何对甲方不利的事实都不应该披露。但在说出这番话之前,我们得意识到它将引发的后果。我们所指的反动是什么意思?我想大家都同意纳粹德国是最卑劣的反动派,或最卑劣的反对派之一。而在英国,战争期间给纳粹的宣传机器提供了最多素材的人正是那些告诉我们批评苏联是在“客观上”支持法西斯的人。我不是指那些处于反战阶段的共产党人,我指的是所有的左翼人士。渐渐地,纳粹电台从英国左翼报刊中获得的材料比从右翼报刊中获得的还要多。情况就只能是这样,因为对于英国制度的严肃抨击就主要来自于左翼报刊。每一次对贫民窟或社会不平等的揭露,每一次对保守党领袖的攻击,每一次对大英帝国的谴责,都是送给戈培尔的一份礼物。而且这未必是一份薄礼,因为德国有关“英国财阀统治”的宣传在中立国产生了深远的影响,尤其是在战争的早期。”


也就是说,英国的左翼人士对英国的批评,在客观上反而成为了纳粹的宣传材料,有利于法西斯主义,因此,按照这种逻辑,左翼人士他们自己就不应该对英国有任何的批评。


这一逻辑也可以适用于当代,比方说,美国的左翼和主流媒体长期以来把美国表述成一个无可救药,带有原罪的种族主义国家,纽约时报甚至专门组织了一个1619计划,说美国的建国时期是1619而非1776,独立战争是为了阻止黑奴的解放。因此,当有人指控中国共产党在新疆建立集中营,强迫劳动时,外交部的华春莹可以轻松地列举出美国的劣行,并且指出一个带有原罪的种族主义国家没有资格对其它国家指手画脚。这是不是证明了美国的左翼和主流媒体应该闭嘴呢?


我们知道,共产主义在20世纪犯下的罪行罄竹难书,发生在共产主义政权下的大规模屠杀累计杀死了近1亿人,但是当代的美国左翼有多少人反对共产主义呢?2020年发生了轰轰烈烈的BLM运动,其创立人之一 Patrisse Cullors却自称”Trained Marxist”,BLM在网上列出的目标包括了瓦解西方核心家庭结构和推翻资本主义(web.archive.org/web/2020040802) (uk.gofundme.com/f/ukblm-fund),这些人推到了华盛顿的雕像,却没有动西雅图的列宁雕像,这是不是意味着应该把BLM列为恐怖组织呢?而美国几乎所有的主流媒体都曾赞助过BLM,他们是不是也该被诛连?这些媒体还鼓吹过伊拉克战争,这些做法在客观上造成的伤害难以估量。美国人是不是应该因此找这些媒体算帐?


但是这些人被没有被算账,因为他们生活在一个自由社会,自由社会支持人们拥有异端思想的权利,也支持人们拥有犯错的权力,任何社会,只要有人存在,异端思想就会存在,有害的思想也会存在,问题在于如何应对这些思想,正是不同的应对方式才体现了自由与不自由之间的区别,在一个自由的社会中,真理是在不同的思想的碰撞中出现的,是在理性的辩论和对话中诞生的,而不是一小撮自命不凡的”正义人士”自上而下地规定的。也许有害的思想会利用这种自由进行传播,但正如约翰·弥尔顿在《论出版自由》中说到的那样:


1.”我们知道,在这个世界中,善与恶几乎是无法分开的。关于善的知识和关于恶的知识之间有着千丝万缕的联系和千万种难以识别的相似之处”
2.”如果一种善是隐秘而不能见人的;没有活动,也没有气息,从不敢大胆地站出来和对手见面,而只是在一场赛跑中偷偷地溜掉;这种善我是不敢恭维的。”
2.”善在恶的面前如果只是一个出世未久的幼童,只是因为不知道恶诱惑堕落者所允诺的最大好处而抛弃了恶,那便是一种无知的善,而不是一种真纯的善。它的洁白无瑕只是外加的一层白色而已。”


他还说到:


“如果对成年人每一种行为的善恶问题都加以规定、限制和强迫,那末美德就将徒具空名,善行也就无须赞扬了,严肃公正和节制也就没有好处了。有许多人抱怨天意不应当让亚当逆命。这真是蠢话!上帝赋给他理智就是叫他有选择的自由,因为理智就是选择。不然的话他就会变成一个做作的亚当,木偶戏中的亚当。”


也正如乔治·奥威尔在动物农场的序文《出版的自由》中所说到的:


“思想自由一直是西方文明的突出特征之一,如果它有意义的话,它意味着每个人都应该有权利表达和出版他认为是真相的内容,只要这些内容不会以某种确凿无疑的方式伤害别人。”


替Richard Stallman辩护的理由可以有很多,例如说他技术过硬,聪明过人,是一个天才,他开创了自由软件运动,使其发展了起来,等等等等,但我想这些说法都没有触及最关键的一点,那就是:


在一个真正自由的社会中,一个人不应该因为表达自己的真实想法(不论它有多么愚蠢),或者是因为他的言论可能会冒犯他人,或是因为他的言论会对某人造成间接的”客观”伤害,而失去他的工作。维护和建设这样的一种自由社会,才是自由软件的目的所在。也只有在这样一种自由的社会中,自由软件运动才能成长起来。而要捍卫这种自由,对试图封杀Richard Stallman的势力展开反击就是第一步。


(我只是最近才开始关注这一事件,因此阅读的材料可能不全面,如果有人可以给出不同的证据,或者是反面的证据,可以在下面发出来,我会据此修改我的观点,如果有人能提供更全面的正面证据,也同样欢迎)

我认为现在的西方主流媒体不堪入目,低智、偏执、思想贫乏、立场先行,最重要的是丧失了基本的诚实,这一点在川普上台后尤其明显,川普下台后也依然如此,川普很可能只是暴露了这些媒体的腐化。

作为替代品,我推荐一些与"正统思想"相对的另类刊物,如果有对英美政治感兴趣的,大可以离开丧失信誉的主流媒体,而把目光转向这些另类刊物。

1. Spiked (spiked-online.com/)

Spiked是一家英国的左翼报刊,与热衷于身份政治主流左翼不同的是,该报刊依然坚持阶级政治,主张普世价值和启蒙思想,并且把自由放在很高的位置,该刊的总编Brendan O'Neill自称是Libertarian Marxist(自由意志马克思主义者),是一个重视自由传统的英国左派。

2.Quillette (quillette.com)

Quillette是来自澳大利亚的一家刊物,由记者Claire Lehmann创立,Quillette一词源自法语,寓意着埋在泥土中柳条会生根发芽,该刊的宗旨是为人们提供一个抨击左翼正统的环境,该刊主要关注的是言论自由与身份政治。

3.Reason (reason.com)

Reason是美国的一家自由意志主义刊物,其关注的重点自然也就是自由,不光是经济自由,还有政治自由与思想自由,创立于1958年,在我列举的四家刊物中,它是历史最悠久的,Milton Friedman, Murray Rothbard, Thomas Szasz, and Thomas Sowell 等重量级人物都曾为之撰稿。

4.UnHerd (unherd.com)

UnHerd来自于英国,是一个年轻的杂志,它的撰稿人既有左派出身的人物,也有右翼人士,该杂志的目标是以新颖大胆的思想打破群体思维的禁锢,该杂志主要关注的是思想观念和文化。

这些另类刊物虽然规模不大,但它们关注的都是切实存在的问题,而且尊重事实和理性,它们言语平实,不用故弄玄虚的行话,与主流媒体的情绪煽动和空洞无物形成了鲜明对比,这些另类刊物的阅读价值远胜于主流媒体。

有一位朋友质疑卫报的这篇文章是否真的主张把言论置于政府和巨头的控制之下,抑制去中心化技术,这是我的回答,由于原本的讨论串并不公开,所以我再重新发一遍:

问:我希望你能解释一下,原文中到底哪里暗示“要打击"仇恨言论" 和 "纳粹主义",就要把言论置于政府和巨头的控制之下,这些去中心化平台是不允许存在的。”?

答:如果你觉得原嘟文的暗示还不够明显的话,我愿意再补充一些:

The technical details are perhaps less important than the practical effect: no one has authority over these platforms: no one owns them. While governments and users can place pressure on the big social media companies to ban problematic users or communities, for better or worse, no one can stop anyone creating their own servers or peer-to-peer networks.

These technologies, then, are effectively uncensorable. According to a report by Emmi Bevensee, the co-founder of research consultancy Rebellious Data and the social media monitoring tool SMAT, extremists have been advocating, and even developing them, for years.

" The reason I want it as a trans anti-fascist is the same reason that a Nazi wants it; we just have opposite ends "

“Every marginalized community knows what it’s like to be systematically deplatformed”, says Bevensee, who uses non-binary pronouns, pointing to the way in which groups such as sex workers have adopted platforms like Mastodon after finding themselves unable to advertise their services.

But as Bevensee’s report shows, peer-to-peer platforms are a double-edged sword. “The reason I want it as a trans anti-fascist is the same reason that a Nazi wants it; we just have opposite ends,” they explain.

“You know who really doesn’t understand it? The FBI,” Bevensee adds: “we’re talking about a technology that can’t be subpoenaed. It can’t be surveiled” and, in order to carry out remote surveillance of private chats, “you would have to back door every single device in the world”.

This opens the way for extremists to propagandize and organize on platforms that are beyond the reach of legal authorities and tech giants alike. After the far right-friendly social media site Gab encountered hosting problems and app store bans, it rebuilt itself on Mastodon’s software, despite determined opposition from the platform’s creators and users.

文章提到,假如用户使用的是去中心化平台,这些平台就不会因为外部的施压而封杀"问题用户"。 (去中心化保护问题用户)

文章还提到,"极端主义者"长年以来一直在推行在研发这类技术。(研发去中心化和p2p等技术的是坏人)

文章还提到,因为这些技术无法被监控,无法被传唤,极端主义者就可以利用这些技术进行宣传和组织。(使用这些技术的是坏人)

问:我还看到了:
"a double-edged sword"
"The reason I want it as a trans anti-fascist is the same reason that a Nazi wants it; we just have opposite ends"

为什么你看到卫报提到 "can’t be surveiled" ,就觉得它是在强调censorship的重要性?还有,下面讲的这些利用技术为恶的难道不是事实?为了不被闭嘴而转行研发这些技术的确实有一大部分人是极端人士啊。

答:"can't be surveiled 来自于该文对Bevensee报告的引用,该文在其后又加入"This opens the way for extremists to propagandize and organize on platforms that are beyond the reach of legal authorities and tech giants alike. " ,再联系前文的"While governments and users can place pressure on the big social media companies to ban problematic users or communities" ,可推导出该文主张把这些人困在中心化的平台中。的确,极端分子利用技术为恶是事实,但首先,我们要把重点集中在有权有势的人用利用技术所行的恶,也就是政府和技术寡头所行之恶,其次,任何技术都有好处有坏处,但总体而言,我认为去中心化的技术是利大于弊的技术,再者,在去中心化技术出现以前,就已经有过印刷术,电报,电话等传播信息的技术,这些技术当然也曾经被坏人使用,但我不认为应该禁止印刷术,电报,电话。即使没有任何技术,只要人有一张嘴,就有可能传播坏思想,但我认为不应该因此封住所有人的嘴。最后,要想完全扼杀人们的恶行,只有靠扼杀人们的自由意志,只有没有自由的地方,完全的安全才是可能的,但这种安全是无意义的。

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对于该报道的内容,也许人们会有不同的理解,我没有时间遂条反驳,所以放出原文供大家自行判断,有意的朋友可以翻译这篇文章:

Far-right supporters move to open source to evade censorship

A suicide and a strange bitcoin bequest have opened a window on to the new frontier of extremist online media

Fri 12 Mar 2021 10.10 GMT

On 8 December last year, a Frenchman called Laurent Bachelier gave away a total of 28.5 bitcoins – worth $556,000 – to 22 people. On the same day, he killed himself.

In suicide notes written in French and English, he explained that the burden of illness (he suffered from a neurological pain disorder) and his loss of hope for the future had led him to despair. After railing against the decline of western civilization and attacks on free speech, he wrote that he had decided to “leave his modest wealth to certain causes and people”.

Allusions to the “14 words” slogan used by white supremacists offered a clue as to the causes he favored. The beneficiaries of Bachelier’s largesse were all either prominent far-right agitators, or platforms offering them a home. The donations immediately attracted the attention of cybersecurity researchers, extremism watchers and law enforcement officers.

Bachelier gave the video platform BitChute two bitcoins (in January, the price of a single bitcoin ranged between $30,000 and $40,000). The neo-Nazi website the Daily Stormer got one, the French Holocaust denier Vincent Reynouard got 1.5, and the US white nationalist celebrity Nick Fuentes, an attendee of the riots in Charlottesville and the rally that preceded the storming of the Capitol in Washington, received 13.5 – worth over $450,000.

A Guardian investigation can now reveal that one of the lesser-known beneficiaries is a YouTube influencer of sorts – one with a history of promoting far-right political ideology. Luke Smith, now a Florida resident, maintains a monetized YouTube channel with 109,000 subscribers. He received at least one bitcoin from Bachelier, valued at the time of writing at just over $30,000.

It’s possible that Bachelier saw in Luke Smith a like mind and a shared purpose. Beyond their common ground in far-right politics, each saw technology as a weapon in their war against liberal, tolerant societies.

Like Bachelier, Smith eschews so-called proprietary software – like MacOS or Microsoft Word – and communications tools like Facebook or Twitter, built and controlled by Silicon Valley firms. Instead, Smith is an advocate for so-called “open source software” – the kind that makes it possible to use, copy, redistribute and modify software legally. And recently, he has been promoting communications platforms that might help extremists to operate beyond the reach of censorship – and even the law.

What Smith preaches: a war against the modern world

The man being funded by Bachelier’s donation likes to present himself as a latter-day Ted Kaczynski – the so-called Unabomber, whose infamous manifesto Smith has at times earnestly recommended to his followers.

Kaczynski, a terrorist still imprisoned for a 17-year bombing campaign that killed three and injured 23, was motivated by a hatred of the modern technological world. In recent years, his apocalyptic account of an industrial civilization on the brink of collapse has resonated with rightwing extremists – including the Christchurch mosque murderer, Brenton Tarrant – who describe themselves as “eco-fascists”.

In 2019, Smith said in a video he wanted to live in a “Unabomber cabin” to escape the surveillance and censorship which he believes is especially aimed at the far right. In a post on his blog in the same year – since deleted – he described the modern world as one “where your every action is watched, if you use proprietary software and communicate only via social media services”.

 The fantasy of the US splintering along ethnic lines has long been entertained by white nationalists

Public records show that Smith moved to a rural property that year near Mayo, in northern Florida, whose title is held by a family member. Since then, most of his videos have been recorded in and around the property.

In various videos and podcasts, Smith rehearses other ideas associated with the far right. He advocates breaking the US up – potentially into racial enclaves “maybe [by] dividing by states, maybe [by] dividing by ethnic groups”. The fantasy of the US splintering along ethnic lines has long been entertained by white nationalists, who have taken to calling themselves the “Balk Right”.

This is not the only place where Smith touches on ideas associated with white nationalism. In a 2018 podcast, he offers an account of human history that relies on arguments made in The 10,000 Year Explosion, described by the Southern Poverty Law Center as a white nationalist book. Smith also directed readers to websites like radishmag, where readers are asked to “reconsider” slavery and lynching is painted in a positive light.

Luke Smith did not respond to repeated requests for comment.

Taken together, these beliefs come back to another far-right splinter ideology: the neoreactionary movement, which in the last decade has been enjoying an online renaissance of sorts, especially among some of Silicon Valley’s tech elite.

The birth of the neoreactionary movement

The neoreactionary movement traces its history to 2007, when the Silicon Valley entrepreneur Curtis Yarvin started a popular blog under the pseudonym Mencius Moldbug. He used it to attack liberalism, democracy and equality, discussed racial hierarchy in the euphemistic terms of “human biodiversity”, and counseled followers to simply detach themselves from the society ruled by the institutions of liberalism.

Journalist Corey Pein wrote an account of the culture of Silicon Valley which, in part, examines the influence that Yarvin’s ideas had in the tech world. Pein says that while neoreactionary ideology is somewhat incoherent, what is consistent is the members’ commitment to extricate themselves from liberal democracy. This “exit” doctrine was influential among some Silicon Valley leaders, including the tech billionaire Peter Thiel, who once memorably said: “I no longer believe that freedom and democracy are compatible.”

Smith follows the same ideological path. His principal outlet for these ideas is his YouTube channel, where he offers tutorials on how to use austere open source software applications, encouraging viewers to detach themselves from Silicon Valley’s products. The channel is both relatively successful and lucrative, and followers rate him highly. His videos have had more than 18.7m views,meaning he could earn anywhere up to $31,100 a year from his channel on current numbers.

 Smith has been pushing users in the direction of decentralized social media platforms in the so-called 'fediverse'

YouTube confirmed that Smith’s channel remained in their partner program, meaning that he continues to earn money from the channel, but that they had removed one video, featuring racial slurs, which the Guardian had asked about.

Media representatives for Google responded to requests for comment with their
own request for clarification of questions about Smith’s channel and
their community guidelines, but ultimately offered no comment.

Smith has lately been pushing users in the direction of decentralized, resilient social media platforms in the so-called “fediverse”, a network of independent social media sites that communicate with one another, and allow people to interact across different sites. This could allow far-right activists to operate in ways that make them very difficult to shut down.

Though many prominent programmers and advocates in both the wider open source software movement and the fediverse are motivated by progressive, anti-corporate or anti-authoritarian political ideals, now the tools they have created might be used to shelter far-right extremists from the consequences of their hate speech and organizing.

Manipulating the open source movement for nefarious ends

The free and open source software movement has attracted many people with progressive politics, who have used it to help provide digital tools to those with few resources, to breathe new life into hardware that might otherwise have been added to a growing mountain of e-waste, or to move public institutions from Barcelona to Brasília away from dependence on expensive software.

However, experts say that it is not surprising that someone like Smith would be tolerated or even welcomed by some elements of open source culture.

Megan Squire is a professor of computer science at Elon University who has published research on both the far right and open source software communities. She says that “the dominant open source culture historically has been one of extreme misogyny, unfounded meritocracy, toxicity and abuse of everyone,” and that Smith is one of those resisting efforts to change that culture.

In recent years, and especially since the Gamergate movement intensified scrutiny on toxicity in tech, some responded to the blatant sexism, antisemitism and racism online with codes of conduct after realizing this behavior was actually starting to hurt them (Squires says they couldn’t recruit and retain developers).

The provision of safer online spaces for marginalized groups is a large part of the motivation of many of the people who have created the underlying software. On those platforms, tools for moderation and easy ways to flag sensitive content are baked in by design. But Smith is among a small group who repeatedly rail against the introduction of such codes of conduct within open source projects.

 Some open source communications platforms do away with the need for servers by implementing a 'peer-to-peer' network

In a video recorded a week after the Capitol riots, when social media bans were removing rightwingers from Donald Trump down to prevent further violence, Smith said that those who wanted to bypass censorship should use the Twitter-like platform, Pleroma.

Open source software like Pleroma, Mastodon and Matrix reproduce the functions of Twitter, allowing users to send out brief messages to followers. But their implementation and structure are much more decentralized, allowing anyone to set up their own platform on their own server, after which they can join up, or “federate”, with other such communities.

Some open source communications platforms go a step beyond this, and do away with the need for servers altogether by implementing a “peer-to-peer” network. PeerTube, for example, allows users to browse and watch videos in a similar way to YouTube, but instead of streaming it to users from a central server, each user watching a video acts as a relay point.

The technical details are perhaps less important than the practical effect: no one has authority over these platforms: no one ownsthem. While governments and users can place pressure on the big social media companies to ban problematic users or communities, for better or worse, no one can stop anyone creating their own servers or peer-to-peer networks.

These technologies, then, are effectively uncensorable. According to a report by Emmi Bevensee, the co-founder of research consultancy Rebellious Data and the social media monitoring tool SMAT, extremists have been advocating, and even developing them, for years.

 The reason I want it as a trans anti-fascist is the same reason that a Nazi wants it; we just have opposite ends

“Every marginalized community knows what it’s like to be systematically deplatformed”, says Bevensee, who uses non-binary pronouns, pointing to the way in which groups such as sex workers have adopted platforms like Mastodon after finding themselves unable to advertise their services.

But as Bevensee’s report shows, peer-to-peer platforms are a double-edged sword. “The reason I want it as a trans anti-fascist is the same reason that a Nazi wants it; we just have opposite ends,” they explain.

“You know who really doesn’t understand it? The FBI,” Bevensee adds: “we’re talking about a technology that can’t be subpoenaed. It can’t be surveiled” and, in order to carry out remote surveillance of private chats, “you would have to back door every single device in the world”.

This opens the way for extremists to propagandize and organize on platforms that are beyond the reach of legal authorities and tech giants alike. After the far right-friendly social media site Gab encountered hosting problems and app store bans, it rebuilt itself on Mastodon’s software, despite determined opposition from the platform’s creators and users.

Beyond Gab’s ambiguous place in the fediverse, the Guardian found dozens of servers using peer-to-peer, open source tools, which were either exclusively or disproportionately devoted either to far-right politics, or to conspiracy theories that mainstream social media services have previously cracked down on, including coronavirus denialism, “incel” culture and neo-Nazism.

With the far right under pressure from mainstream social media companies and internet hosts, this may be just the beginning.

But experts say that despite their recurrent complaints about Silicon Valley’s platforms, extremists will maintain their foothold in the mainstream for as long as they can. As Squire says of Smith’s internet activity: “Why is he still on YouTube? Because that’s where the eyeballs are, that’s where the money is.”

• In the US, the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is at 800-273-8255 or chat for support. You can also text HOME to 741741 to connect with a crisis text line counselor. In the UK and Ireland, Samaritans can be contacted on 116 123 or email jo@samaritans.org or jo@samaritans.ie. In Australia, the crisis support service Lifeline is 13 11 14. Other international helplines can be found at www.befrienders.org

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纽约时报的专栏作家Kevin Roose在今年也发布了一篇抨击加密通讯软件的文章,该文章认为不受权威机构管控的加密通讯会"助长虚假信息的传播"。此人还发布过一篇文章,号召拜登政府设立"真理官"。

nytimes.com/2021/02/03/technol

nytimes.com/2021/02/02/technol

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卫报发布了一篇文章,宣称Fediverse除了Gab之外。还有着几十个通过p2p技术和开源软件从事极右政治,宣扬阴谋论和新纳粹主义的实例。这篇文章还引用一个叫做 Megan Squire的"专家"的说法,声称主流的开源文化长期以来一直是"极端厌女主义"的体现,"对社会充满了毒害","虐待着所有人"。该文章指出,类似于Pleroma, Mastodon 和 Matrix 的社交平台和Facebook, Twitter这些巨头不一样,由于它们的去中心化特性,这些平台是无法遭到审查的。在Guardian看来,这是一个很严重的问题,因为这意味着权威机构和技术巨头不能审查言论,Guardian暗示道,要打击"仇恨言论" 和 "纳粹主义",就要把言论置于政府和巨头的控制之下,这些去中心化平台是不允许存在的。

"Beyond Gab’s ambiguous place in the fediverse, the Guardian found dozens of servers using peer-to-peer, open source tools, which were either exclusively or disproportionately devoted either to far-right politics, or to conspiracy theories that mainstream social media services have previously cracked down on, including coronavirus denialism, “incel” culture and neo-Nazism."

"Megan Squire is a professor of computer science at Elon University who has published research on both the far right and open source software communities. She says that “the dominant open source culture historically has been one of extreme misogyny, unfounded meritocracy, toxicity and abuse of everyone,” and that Smith is one of those resisting efforts to change that culture."

"Some open source communications platforms go a step beyond this, and do away with the need for servers altogether by implementing a “peer-to-peer” network. PeerTube, for example, allows users to browse and watch videos in a similar way to YouTube, but instead of streaming it to users from a central server, each user watching a video acts as a relay point.

The technical details are perhaps less important than the practical effect: no one has authority over these platforms: no one owns them. While governments and users can place pressure on the big social media companies to ban problematic users or communities, for better or worse, no one can stop anyone creating their own servers or peer-to-peer networks.

These technologies, then, are effectively uncensorable. According to a report by Emmi Bevensee, the co-founder of research consultancy Rebellious Data and the social media monitoring tool SMAT, extremists have been advocating, and even developing them, for years."

amp.theguardian.com/world/2021

poa.st/objects/3c198fd5-7927-4

近代的民主政体意味着一种平衡,这种平衡包括了个人与团体之间的平衡,团体与团体之间的平衡,个人,团体与国家之间的平衡,权利与责任之间平衡,传统与变革之间的平衡,等等。近几十年来美国政治的演变表明,这种平衡是十分不稳定的,在遭遇到技术的过快发展,传播媒介的剧烈改变,经济环境的恶化等多重作用时,这种平衡很容易遭到破坏。这种平衡一开始之所能成立,是因为民主社会的基本单位是拥有常识,能做出理性决定的个体,这些个体又能够与他人通过文明的沟通与和平的博弈达成共识。在18世纪和19世纪,这是容易达到的平常状态,但随着新技术和新媒介的推行,最开始是电视,然后是电脑,互联网和社交媒体,一个明显趋势就是个体理性受到了大幅削弱,个体不再被当作需要说服的对象,而成了心理操纵和性格分析的目标,就连政治本身也成了娱乐选秀的节目。另一个趋势则是,在利益不同或政见不和的群体之间,文明和理性的沟通变得越来越困难,人类向来有党同伐异的倾向,但这一倾向当今能被放大得如此厉害,恐怕与主流社交平台自身的设计脱离不了关系。这两项趋势,也就是个体理性的削弱和文明沟通的缺失,辅之以全球化,身份政治等事物的负作用,使平衡的基础遭到了严重的破坏。民主政体并不是一种一经建立就可以一劳永逸的体制,要维系民主体制就,就需要维护这些平衡,并且对新的威胁抱有警惕。

"极权主义国家的有组织的撒谎并不像有时所说的那样,是类似于“兵不厌诈”那样的权宜之计。这是极权主义与生俱来的特点,即使集中营和秘密警察部队已经没有存在的必要也仍然会继续下去。在共产党的知识分子内部流传着一则地下消息,大意是尽管俄国政府现在被迫进行虚假的宣传、诬陷罪状的审判等等事情,但它正在秘密记录下真相,以后将会把这些真相公之于众。我想,我们可以很肯定地说事实根本不是这样,因为这么一种行为所暗示的心态是一个信奉自由主义的历史学家的心态,认为过去是不容改变的,对历史的正确认识是理所当然的有价值的事情。而在极权主义者的眼中,历史是创造出来的,而不是学习了解到的。一个极权主义国家的实质是神权政治,其特权统治阶级为了保住自己的地位,必须被认为是一贯正确的。但在现实中没有人能一贯正确,因此必须经常性地篡改历史事件,为的是证明这个或那个错误并没有犯过,这个或那个臆想的胜利的确发生了。然后,每一次政策的大调整都需要对教条进行相应的调整,烘托出形象伟大的历史角色。这种事情到处都在发生,但显然,在任何时候只能容忍一种意见的社会里更有可能会发生肆无忌惮的对历史的篡改。事实上,极权主义总是要求不停地篡改历史。从长远来看,它或许会要求否定客观真实的存在。在这个国度,极权主义的帮凶总是争辩说,既然绝对的真相无法得知,撒个弥天大谎比撒个小谎其实糟糕不到哪里去。他们指出,所有的史实都带有偏见,而且并不准确;另一方面,现代物理学已经指出,我们眼中那个真实的世界其实只是幻觉,因此相信眼见为实耳听为虚的证据只是庸俗的思想。一个能够维系自身延续的极权主义社会或许建立起了精神分裂的思想体系。在这个社会里,常识的法则对日常生活和某些纯科学研究起作用,但政治家、历史学家和社会学家可以罔顾它们的存在。已经有无数的人认为篡改科学课本是可耻的事情,却认为篡改历史事实并没有什么错。当文学与政治勾结在一起时,极权主义对知识分子施加了最沉重的压力。目前纯粹的科学还没有遭受到同等程度的威胁,这在部分程度上解释了在所有国家,科学家比作家更认同政府这一事实。"—奥威尔 《文学的绊脚石》

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极权主义的意识形态和一般的意识形态的区别在于,尽管几乎所有意识形态的支持者都认为自己的信奉的理论是正确的,但当事实与理论相冲突的时侯,一般人的做法是修正自己理论以适应现实(或者是装做没看见),而极权主义意识形态的做法则是操纵现实以使其适应自己的理论。普通人会认为自己信奉的理论是真理,但极权主义者认为自己信奉的理论是绝对真理,两者的区别在于,他们对于新证据、新材料的态度是什么样的:最可取的态度是以开放的眼光接受新证据、新材料,这是科学的态度。不那么可取的态度是回避新证据,新材料,这是鸵鸟的态度。而极权主义的态度则是把现实与证据本身当做可操纵的对象,认为只要用政治权力控制了现实本身,自己的理论就能做到永远正确,就像一个小孩子为了欺骗父母把家里的所有钟调慢一个小时一样。谎言和欺骗在历史上屡见不鲜,但利用一个无所不在的全能政府在整个社会中推行谎言和欺骗则是20世纪的新现象。

什么是种族批判理论?

种族批判理论是一种对种族和种族主义的特定思维方式,它源起于上世纪70年代的哈佛法学院,初步建立于90年代早期。它宣称自己的目的是质疑民权运动和民权法案在改善种族状况上起到的作用(在西方国家,尤其是美国),它真正的目的是彻底重组社会,文化,法律的大环境,并以此逆转它认为历史上存在过的种族不公。

为了简要地说明这一点,我将向诸位援引《种族批判理论:来自于种族批判理论家Delgado 与 Stefancic的引言》中的两句原文。这些原文以种族批判理论自身的文字,概括了种族批判理论的实质。

首先,种族批判理论是这样理解种族和种族主义的:种族是政治建构,白人建构了种族,以便于维护自身特权,同时排斥他人,种族主义是社会的常态,存在于所有的交互中,存在于所有的机构中,存在于所有的现象中,而且将永远持续下去(除非展开彻底的社会文化革命,让种族批判理论家掌握大权)。也就是说,在种族批判理论的预设中,种族主义无处不在,种族批判理论把这种预设当作教条,这一教条也就是人们知道的”系统化种族主义”。Delgado 和 Stefancic在书中如是说道,

种族批判理论家相信什么呢?也许他们并不都相信这本书的所有宗旨,但大都同意以下的几点主张:首先,种族主义是常态,而不是什么反常现象—它是惯例,是社会的平常运转方式,是有色人种的日常经历。其次,多数人会赞同,我们的制度是白人优先的制度,这个制度在物质层面和精神层面均起有着重要的功用。种族主义的第一特性,即普遍性,使得种族主义难以改变,难以面对。……种族主义的第二特性,有时又叫做”利益聚合性” 或 “物质决定性,则提供了一个更广泛的视角。种族主义既有利于白人精英(物质上),也有利于工薪阶层白人(心理上),因此,社会中的大部分人并无意消除种族主义。

如你所见,种族批判理论家相信人们普遍从种族主义中获利,因此普遍希望维持”系统化种族主义”,这也是为什么种族批判理论家会宣称几乎所有人都是种族主义者。那些尤其擅长在任何事物中发现”系统化种族主义”的人,就被称为”种族批判理论家”,这些人采用的是种族批判理论的第一条预设,用Robin DiAngelo的话来说,就是:”问题不在于’种族主义有没有发生?’ 而在于’种族主义在此情况下是如何体现的?’ “也就是说,他们先是预定了种族主义无处不在,然后再”批判”地寻找种族主义,直到找到为止。还有很重要的一点:判定种族主义是否发生的,不是客观的标准,而是主观的”生活经历”,有没有证据无关紧要。

其次,和很多人以为的不一样,种族批判理论并没有继承民权运动的遗产。种族批判理论反对西方社会的两大基石:自由主义和宪政民主,并且同时否认了宪法的平等原则和中立原则(这些原则是废奴运动和民权运动的支柱)。它还否定了合法推论和启蒙理性主义。既然它有着这些特点,那么根据定义,种族批判理论便是反理性的,反自由的,反平等的,反美国的一种理论。

“种族批判理论运动包话了各种致力于研究和改变种族,种族主义与权力之间的联系的学者和社会活动人士,该运动与传统的民权研究和种族研究所关注的议题类似,但与后者不同的是,本运动试图将这些议题放在更广括的视角下进行研究,这包括了经济,历史,环境,群体利益,个人利益,情感和潜意识。与传统的,注重改良主义和逐步进步的民权话语不同,种族批判理论质疑自由主义秩序的根本,包括了平等理论,合法推论,启蒙理性主义,和宪法的中立原则。”

种族批判理论认为,自由社会的基石,也就是自由主义原则,没有消除,而是掩盖和维持了岐视。正如Özlem Sensoy 和 Robin DiAngelo在她们的种族批判理论手册《人们真的平等吗?》中写道的,

“种族批判理论运动原先提倡过某种形式的自由人文主义(个人主义,自由,和平),但迅速转向了自由人文主义的对立面。自由人文主义的背后的思想是个人自由(认为人们可以独立地做出理性决定,决定自身的命运),在种族批判理论看来,这一思想掩盖了系统化的种族主义,让弱势群体接受现状。换句话说,它让人们错误地以为自己拥有比社会结构允许他们拥有的更多的自由和选择。”

可以看到,种族批判理论对我们社会有着根本不同的看法,我们中的多数人并没有意识到这一点,也不认同这种看法。种族批判理论先是预设了种族主义无所不在,再刻意地去寻找它。他们说,不这样做的人,以及不同意种族批判理论的人,就是种族主义的共犯。他们还否定了自由社会所赖以运行的自由主义原则,理性原则,法律原则和科学原则。因此,即便他们对种族和种族主义的看法有些是对的,他们也是各种意义上的激进派,很难相信这些人会诚实地描述现实,而有足够的理由相信这些人在种族问题上起到的恰恰是反面作用。

What Is Critical Race Theory?

I’ve been asked a million times for a short introduction to Critical Race Theory that hits the high points in a quick, straightforward way. Most people will have heard of Critical Race Theory by now, but in case you haven’t, it’s a particular way of thinking about race and racism that developed first at Harvard Law School from the late 1970s through the early 1990s. Its stated objective is to question whether the Civil Rights Movement and Civil Rights Acts legislation improved the racial situation in Western nations, especially the United States. Its true objective is to re-organize the social, cultural, and legal playing field in a way that claims to reverse “historical injustices” around the issue of race, allegedly without reproducing them.

To keep this short and simple, I’ll provide you with two quotes from the book Critical Race Theory: An Introduction (third edition) by Critical Race Theorists Richard Delgado and Jean Stefancic. These quotes summarize everything that Critical Race Theory is really about in its own words.

First, Critical Race Theory views race and racism this way: race is a political construction that was invented by white people to give themselves power while excluding all other races from it, and racism is the ordinary state of affairs in society, present in all interactions, institutions, and phenomena, and effectively permanent in society (short of a full sociocultural revolution that puts them in charge). That is, Critical Race Theory assumes that racism is present in everything under a doctrine known as “systemic racism.” Quoting from Delgado and Stefancic,

What do critical race theorists believe? Probably not every member would subscribe to every tenet set out in this book, but many would agree on the following propositions. First, that racism is ordinary, not aberrational—“normal science,” the usual way society does business, the common, everyday experience of most people of color in this country. Second, most would agree that our system of white-over-color ascendancy serves important purposes, both psychic and material. The first feature, ordinariness, means that racism is difficult to cure or address. … The second feature, sometimes called “interest convergence” or material determinism, adds a further dimension. Because racism advances the interests of both white elites (materially) and working-class people (psychically), large segments of society have little incentive to eradicate it.

As you can see, Critical Race Theorists believe that people who they claim benefit from “systemic racism,” which they declare to be the ordinary state of affairs in society, want to maintain it, which is why Critical Race Theorists say virtually everyone is racist. People who are especially skilled at finding the “systemic racism” in everything are called “Critical Race Theorists.” They proceed according to a simplified version of this first assumption of Critical Race Theory, which can be expressed in the words of Robin DiAngelo this way: “The question is not ‘Did racism take place?’ but ‘How did racism manifest in that situation?’” That is, they assume racism is present in everything and look for it “Critically” until they find it. Importantly, this is assessed subjectively according to the “lived experience” of racism and does not depend upon there being any evidence of racism.

Second, Critical Race Theory does not continue the legacy of the Civil Rights Movement, as many incorrectly believe. It is against liberalism and the liberal order upon which Western societies are founded, and it rejects both equality and neutral principles of constitutional law (these were the backbone of both the abolitionist movement that ended slavery and the Civil Rights Movement). It also rejects legal reasoning and Enlightenment rationalism. This makes Critical Race Theory unreasonable, illiberal, against equality, and anti-American, by definition.

The critical race theory (CRT) movement is a collection of activists and scholars engaged in studying and transforming the relationship among race, racism, and power. The movement considers many of the same issues that conventional civil rights and ethnic studies discourses take up but places them in a broader perspective that includes economics, history, setting, group and self-interest, and emotions and the unconscious. Unlike traditional civil rights discourse, which stresses incrementalism and step-by-step progress, critical race theory questions the very foundations of the liberal order, including equality theory, legal reasoning, Enlightenment rationalism, and neutral principles of constitutional law.

Critical Race Theory believes these bedrock liberal principles upon which free societies are built are ways that discrimination can be hidden and maintained rather than overcome. As stated by Özlem Sensoy and Robin DiAngelo in their Critical Theory education manual Is Everyone Really Equal?,

[Critical] movements initially advocated for a type of liberal humanism (individualism, freedom, and peace) but quickly turned to a rejection of liberal humanism. The ideal of individual autonomy that underlies liberal humanism (the idea that people are free to make independent rational decisions that determine their own fate) was viewed as a mechanism for keeping the marginalized in their place by obscuring larger structural systems of inequality. In other words, it fooled people into believing that they had more freedom and choice than societal structures actually allow.

As you can see, Critical Race Theory presents a radically different view of our society and of us than most of us recognize or accept. They begin with the assumption of racism and look to find it. They say everyone who doesn’t do this is complicit in the problem, including just for disagreeing with Critical Race Theory. And they reject the fundamental liberal, reasonable, legal, and scientific principles upon which liberal societies operate. That is, even though they touch on real truths about race and racism in our world, they are radicals in every sense of the word, and there’s almost no reason to believe they describe reality as it is and much reason to believe they get the issue almost exactly backwards.

newdiscourses.com/2021/01/what

《犬儒理论》摘录

第三部分:不许反对,只许同意

Many people (especially academics) remain unaware of the depth of this problem, which presents as ideological closedness, unwillingness to accept any disagreement, and an authoritarian will to enforce a Social Justice conception of society and moral imperative on others.35 Caring about justice in society is not a problem—indeed, it’s necessary to a healthy society. It is also not inherently a problem if bad ideas enter the academy and gain popularity. This is how knowledge advances—by giving space to all kinds of ideas within our centers of learning, where they can be examined, tested, and criticized. (Some of the most well-established ideas of today—like the “Big Bang” theory of cosmology—were considered mad and unethical at one time.) A problem arises, however, when any school of thought refuses to submit its ideas to rigorous scrutiny, rejects that kind of examination on principle, and asserts that any attempts to subject it to thoughtful criticism are immoral, insincere, and proof of its thesis. To get a sense of the severity of this problem, let’s look at three examples from the 2010s.

任何一个社会都会存在坏思想,坏思想其存在本身并不是问题所在,真理就是在各种思想的碰撞中出现的。然而,当某种思想拒绝与外部接触,拒绝人们的审视,拒绝外界的检验,并且把一切对自己的批评都描绘成不道德,不真诚的攻讦时,问题就出现了。许多人对此尚未有清楚的认识,以下的一些例子可以让人们体会到问题严重性:

案例一:Applebaum与《白人共犯》

Example 1: Being White, Being Good: White Complicity, White Moral Responsibility, and Social Justice Pedagogy

by Barbara Applebaum- (2010)

In this 2010 book, Social Justice educator Barbara Applebaum uses the postmodern knowledge and political principles to argue that all white people are complicit in racism, because of their automatic participation in the system of power and privilege described by critical race Theory. Though this book is not well-known among the general public, it is a landmark text in critical whiteness and critical education Theory circles, because it represents an advance on the idea that all white people have privilege (a concept that dates to 1989 and the applied postmodern turn) to insist that all white people are therefore actively complicit in racism. She writes,

White students often assume that responsibility begins and ends with the awareness of privilege. By admitting to or confessing privilege, however, white students are actually able to avoid owning up to their complicity in systemic racism.36

This really does say that confessing to white privilege is far from sufficient. White students must accept their ongoing complicity in perpetuating systemic racism simply by being white. It is assumed that they must have learned, internalized, and been perpetuating racism even if they do not know it. If this reminds you of Foucault’s notion of powerful discourses working through everyone in society—you’re right. “Integral to the understanding of how discourse works,” Applebaum informs us, “is the Foucaultian notion of power.”37 “Not only is discourse the prism through which reality is given meaning,” she tells us, “but also power works through discourse to constitute subjects.”38 Again, we get this image of power working as a grid, through the people positioned on it, each performing and speaking according to its directives—rather like (nerd alert!) a Borg hive.

Applebaum是”社会正义教员”(Social Justice educator),在这本书里,Applebaum主张所有白人都是种族主义的共犯,因为他们自动参与了种族批判理论所描述的权力系统。她认为,白人拥有特权,因此必定在主动参与种族主义。她写道,

“白人学生通常以为意识到自身的特权就够了,他们错了,白人学生通过坦白自身特权回避了更大的问题,那就是:他们参与着系统化的种族歧视。”

这也就是说,光承认自己的特权还远远不够,白人学生还必须认为,因为他们是白人,他们就必然吸收和内化了种族主义,参与着系统化的种族歧视。

Applebaum demands people believe this paradigm—even though she is quick to point out that she is not technically forbidding disagreement. She writes,

One can disagree and remain engaged in the material, for example, by asking questions and searching for clarification and understanding. Denials, however, function as a way to distance oneself from the material and to dismiss without engagement.39

So, one can ask questions about Applebaum’s thesis and try to understand it, but denial of “The Truth” (what we usually think of as disagreement) can only mean one has not engaged with the material enough or in the right way. In other words, Applebaum proceeds upon an assumption that her thesis is true. She is certain that she is in possession of The Truth (According to Social Justice)—and scolds those who disagree: “[T] he mere fact that they can question the existence of systemic oppression is a function of their privilege to choose to ignore discussions of systemic oppression or not.”40 One might be forgiven for thinking that Applebaum is not really open to the possibility that people might disagree with her. Her students certainly appear to think so:

_[S]tudents in courses that make systemic injustice explicit often complain in teacher evaluations that they have not been allowed to disagree in the course. Students often maintain that such courses indoctrinate a particular view about racism that they are not willing to accept.41

Applebaum advocates shutting down such student disagreement. She gives the example of a male student, who questioned the gender wage gap,

Allowing him to express his disagreement and spending time trying to challenge his beliefs often comes at a cost to marginalized students whose experiences are (even if indirectly) dismissed by his claims.42

Critical education Theory holds that it is dangerous to allow students to express such disagreement. This is because of its reliance on the postmodern knowledge principle—social reality and what is accepted as true are constructed by language. Disagreement would allow dominant discourses to be reasserted, voiced, and heard, which Theory sees as not safe. As Applebaum explains, “language constitutes our reality by providing the conceptual framework from which meaning is given.”43 She adds, “Even if one retreats to the position where one only speaks for oneself, one’s speech is still not neutral and still reinforces the continuance of dominant discourses by omission.”44 Given this understanding of the power of language (a postmodern theme) and its impacts on social justice (through the postmodern political principle), it is essential to control what may and may not be said. This imperative permeates Social Justice scholarship.

Having already defined the only legitimate form of “disagreement” as putting in more effort to understand (read: agree) and dismissed actual disagreement as refusal to engage with The Truth, Applebaum continues,

Resistance will not be allowed to derail the class discussions! Of course, those who refuse to engage might mistakenly perceive this as a declaration that they will not be allowed to express their disagreement but that is only precisely because they are resisting engagement.45 (emphasis in original)

Resistance is indeed futile.

Applebaum要求所有学生都接受这些标准,她指出,自己不禁止反对意见,

“你可以在表达反对的同时保持参与,比方说,你可以问一些问题,以求进一步的阐述。但是否认就不行,否认是一种无参与的反对,它使你疏远材料。”

所以,为了理解Applebaum的论点,学生可以提问,但是”否认”就不行,”否认”Applebaum的基本论点,就是在”否认真相”,说明学生参与的还不够。换句话说,Applebaum认为自己已经掌握了真理,否认她就是否认真理,因此她斥责一切反对意见,她写道:”反对意见的存在本身就是特权者否认系统化种族歧视的证明。”显然,她说自己不禁止反对意见,这是假的,她的学生就这么认为,她写道,

“参与课程的学生总是抱怨教员不允许他们有反对意见,认为教员是在灌输某种特定的种族主义观”

Applebaum主张封杀这样的学生,她举了一个质疑性别收入差异的男生的例子,

“要是让他有了发言的权利,属于弱势群体的那部分学生就会受到伤害”

教育批评理论认为,认学生拥有反对意见的做法是危险的,因为教育批评理论依赖于后现代主义的知识论——语言构建了社会现实和人们眼中的真相,允许反对意见,就是在允许强势话语的回归,因此是危险的。考虑到后现代主义对语言的魔力有着这种理解,而社会正义(Social Justice)又深受后现代主义的影响,就不难理解这些人为什么想方设法地控制言论表达了。

Applebaum先是重新定义了”反对意见”(更加努力地去理解,即彻底同意”,然后把真正的反对的意见描述成”拒绝参与真相”,接着,她继续道,

“课堂不允许出现任何抵抗!那些拒绝参与的学生会将其理解为这是在压制他们的表达权利,但这恰恰证明了他们是在拒绝参与。”

案例二:Alison Bailey与《追溯特权》

Example 2: “Tracking Privilege-Preserving Epistemic Pushback in Feminist and Critical Race Philosophy Classes”

by Alison Bailey (2017)

In this essay, Bailey argues that anyone who disagrees with Social Justice scholarship is insincere and simply trying to preserve unjust power structures, in the service of a knowledge-producing system that privileges straight white men and prevents Social Justice. She defines it thus: “Privilege-preserving epistemic pushback is a variety of willful ignorance that dominant groups habitually deploy during conversations that are trying to make social injustices visible.”46 She assumes that criticisms of Social Justice scholarship are simply attempts to deliberately ignore The Truth According to Social Justice. Furthermore, criticism of Social Justice work is immoral and harmful, Bailey tells us:

I focus on these ground-holding responses because they are pervasive, tenacious, and bear a strong resemblance to critical-thinking practices, and because I believe that their uninterrupted circulation does psychological and epistemic harm to members of marginalized groups.47

Since Social Justice scholars like Bailey assume that disagreement with their work must be a result of intellectual and moral failings, no such disagreement can ever be brooked:

Treating privilege-preserving epistemic pushback as a form of critical engagement validates it and allows it to circulate more freely; this, as I’ll argue later, can do epistemic violence to oppressed groups.48

It should therefore be shut down and replaced with Social Justice scholarship. In fact, for Bailey, critical thinking itself is a problem: it needs replacing with “critical pedagogy” (in which the word “critical” means something different). She explains:

The critical-thinking tradition is concerned primarily with epistemic adequacy. To be critical is to show good judgment in recognizing when arguments are faulty, assertions lack evidence, truth claims appeal to unreliable sources, or concepts are sloppily crafted and applied…. Critical pedagogy regards the claims that students make in response to social-justice issues not as propositions to be assessed for their truth value, but as expressions of power that function to re-inscribe and perpetuate social inequalities. Its mission is to teach students ways of identifying and mapping how power shapes our understandings of the world. This is the first step toward resisting and transforming social injustices.49

This is an explicit admission that Bailey’s aim is not to seek truth, but to teach a specific understanding of Social Justice, for the purposes of activism. Although this essay has not been very influential, it is worth looking at because it is a very clear example of how philosophy classes can be used to instruct students in The Truth According to Social Justice. That this paper was published in Hypatia, the leading feminist philosophy journal, gives us an alarming indication of what is considered acceptable in the fields of Social Justice scholarship, how it can influence education, and how confident and clear this current manifestation of reified postmodernism is.50

Bailey refers to disagreements with Social Justice approaches as “shadow texts,” to suggest that written criticisms of Social Justice are neither sincere nor helpful, and should not be regarded as genuine scholarship. The image of shadow texts, she tells us, comes from the idea of an investigator shadowing her mark: “The word ‘shadow’ calls to mind the image of something walking closely alongside another thing without engaging it.”51 The two examples of shadow texts she gives involve a male student pointing out that men can be victims of domestic violence too, and a female student arguing that one can mention a racist slur in order to discuss it, without using it as a slur. Bailey responds,

We are discussing institutional racism. Jennifer, a white philosophy major, shares a story about racist graffiti that uses the “n” word. She says the word, animating it with that two-fingered scare-quote gesture to signal that she is mentioning it. I ask her to consider the history of the word and how it might mean something different coming from white mouths. I ask her not to use it. She gives the class a mini lecture on the use–mention distinction, reminding me that it “is a foundational concept in analytic philosophy” and that it’s “perfectly acceptable to mention, but not to use the word in philosophical discussions.”52 … If Jennifer continues to press philosophical concepts into the service of a broader refusal to understand the dehumanizing history of the n-word, then “I mentioned but didn’t use the word ‘n—–’” is a shadow text.53

Students in Bailey’s philosophy classes are taught to immediately identify counterviews as resistance to Social Justice’s take on The Truth and as a kind of “ignorance.” She thinks that, when people disagree, it’s because something “triggered the resistance.”55 She writes,

I ask our class to consider how identifying shadow texts might help track the production of ignorance…. It’s essential for them to understand that tracking ignorance requires that our attention be focused not on a few problem individuals, but on learning to identify patterns of resistance and tying ignorance-producing habits to a strategic refusal to understand.56

It is hard to miss the militant activist tone here. Like Applebaum, Bailey has a priestlike certainty of her own rightness and the concomitant need to reeducate and shut down anyone who disagrees. This marks a significant change from the earliest postmodernists’ radical skepticism, but it is in keeping with how the postmodern principles and their application have evolved over the last half-century.

在这篇文章中,Bailey认为,任何反对”社会正义学术”(Social Justice scholarship)的人都是不真诚的,他们希望维护不正义的特权,在她看来,批评”社会正义学术”就是在有意无视”真相”(社会正义学者眼中的真相),而且是不道德的,有害的。Bailey这么说道,

“我之所以关注反对者的回应,是因为它们顽固不化,无所不在,而且与批判性思维十分类似,要是听之任之,就会对弱势群体造成心理伤害”

Bailey这样的学者把一切反对意见都视为智力与道德的失败,因此这些意见都不被允许:

“若是将守旧派(依然坚持逻辑和理性的人)的意见当作合理批评并且认真对待,就会显得守旧派的意见好像是对的,帮助其传播,这么做是在对被压迫群体施加认识论暴力”

因此,就要将这些意见封杀,并代之以社会正义学术。事实上,对Bailey而言,批判性思维本身就是问题:必须以”批判教学”取代批判性思维。(“批判教学”中”批判”的意思已经改变了).她解释道:

“批判性思维主要关注的是知识上的合理性,批判性指的就是能出色地判断哪些观点是错的,哪些论断是无依据的,哪些主张引用了不可靠的信息源,哪些观念经不起推敲……”批判教学”关注的不是主张本身是否符合事实,而是这些主张体现了什么样的权力,这些权力又怎么维护了社会不公。它的目的是教学生发现权力如何塑造了人们对世界的理解。这是反抗和改变社会不公的第一步”

这等于是在明确地承认,Bailey的目的不是追求真相,而是教授一种对社会正义的特殊理解,好为社会活动服务。这篇文章影响虽不大,却明显地展示了哲学课程可以成为灌输意识形态的工具。该文章发布于女权主义哲学的前沿杂志《Hypatia》上,这更让人担忧。令人担忧的不仅是”社会正义教育”的质量,还有”社会正义教育”对教育的影响,以及实用后现代主义自信的展现。

Bailey认为,反对意见本身是什么都不重要,重要的是意见背后的”影子文本”,反对社会正义学术的人都不怀好意,毫无帮助。Bailey给出了”影子文本”两个例子,第一个例子里,一个男学生指出男人也可能遭受家暴,第二个例子里,一个女学生认为,在讨论种族主义脏话(nigger)时,可以提到种族主义脏话,但不把它当脏话用。对此,Bailey认为,很多人不愿去理解”nigger”一词的非人化历史,该女生是则在服务于这些人的不情愿,如果该女生继续这样做的话,”我提到了nigger但没使用它”就是”影子文本”。

在哲学课上,Bailey教学生把所有对社会正义学术的批评都视为”拒绝真相”和”无知”,她认为,如果有人不同意社会正义学术,这是因为某些事物”刺激到了反抗的神经”,她写道,

“我让课上的学生学习如何通过”影子文本”发现无知的根源,他们要知道,要追溯无知的源头,不能只盯着少数个体,而要发现反对意见的规律,并将他们无知与策略性的拒绝理解联系到一起”

和早期后现代主义者的极端怀疑主义不同,Applebaum、Bailey这样的学者对自己信奉的意识形态体现了宗教徒般的狂热信仰。

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