Not in my experience. Normal persons spot fascists. That's how we came to define normality (civility) in the XX century. Most importantly normal persons, in normal situations, know their interlocutor: they are no strangers, they can see beyond their words and they can tell genuine questions from alibis. There's no extremism in defending human rights, while the causes of opposing them are well known (the call for cooperation demands a leap of faith in your neighbors' help against your fears, and that's hard; the call for respect demands the sacrifice of affinities, conventions, traditions, whims, vulnerability, comfort zone, and that's hard).
This conflict arises from thus hardness of the challenge against violence (the shock we endured after WW2); it is so unfair and so wrong to make it just a matter of difference in opinions.
Inside ourselves are not only strong, inalienable opinions and preferences; there's most importantly something volatile and delicate we've crafted as a species for hundreds of thousands of years: a meaning to give to our existence, the reason to wake up in the morning, to keep working during the day, to take care of our health. It's something that didn't exist in nature, and it takes a lot to keep it being, because the mindless cosmos will always threaten it. This thing inside ourself needs to be nurtured, it needs to be addressed, it needs to change and evolve because it's not strong, it will never be stable and self-sufficient, it can never be inalienable, because it is not an opinion, it is not individual: it's our communal duty against the universe that doesn't want us. It's life. Either you accept it and fight, or you side with the storm and eventually pass.
@fra Let me guess, you think half of this meme is true and applies to the one extreme while the other half of the meme doesnt apply, I;m a;so going to venture a guess and say the half you feel that doesnt apply is the half of te spectrum which you happen to be on?
When I visit america I see this meme play out in the most absurd ways a dozen times a day among strangers, among friends I'd never let people like this into that circle in the first place so....
@fra lol, funny how that works huh? Usually when people, particularly americans, join an ideological group they quickly become blind to that groups faults, even as said group descends into cruelty to others.
It is a sad phenomenon but one that has been documented time and time again. It is the root of all human ugliness really.
Dont get me wrong people on both sides are well intentioned, they are comvinced they are working for good, which is a small glimmer of hope I suppose, for all their cruelty that comes from it though Im not sure it is much of a comfort.
In all my years of hearing the left cry about some guy they just met (in person) being a racist or a facist I cant recall a single time there was even a hint of truth to that.
Well, it depends on how (and how much better than me or anybody else) you can detect hints of truth. I was assuming (for the sake of argument, since we don't know each other) that both of us are just as much capable of skepticism and fact-checking.
How can you tell that a person who's willing to discriminate other people is not really a racist/fascist? How can you tell that a leftist who complains about them is lying? I can't, and I don't think you can, but I'm open to surprises.
@fra well I make no assertion about you or your ability to see truth. For that I'd have to see how you treat others over time. I can however speak for the left and the right in america, and neither of them can, at least, not the overwhelming majority of them. Where you fall isnt particularly critical for the discussion I suppose.
You're assuming that being opinionated or being an activist is a cause for (or a consequence of) "joining an ideology". I don't think they are.
I agree with you that the moment you "join" anything you submit yourself to certain social mechanisms, since you are engaging in a group activity and you have to comply to a certain degree of conformity.
That's very different from just "being leftist/liberal", therefore that meme doesn't fully apply, not under those terms. It was funny as a simplification. But we tend to rely too much on simplifications. Better explain them every time we can.
@fra I never claimed or even hinted that being an activist or joining a cause meant "joining an ideology".
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