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Victim mentality

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Re: Victim mentality

Post  Matthew Bailey on Fri Nov 02, 2012 4:08 pm

fossil wrote:
Eldin Alvere wrote:
Yes, it was culturally constructed. That doesn't refute what I said nor did I ever state that it was a universal law. I state that all societies in the world are predominately male dominated. .

And you're wrong.

The Zuni of New Mexico
Iroquois of the "New World"
Cultures of Multiple Fathers in South America

are just a few examples of egalitarian societies. Matriarchies have existed, too. You are apparently ignorant of the last 40 years of anthropology. You are incorrect.

I think that you have fallen for a myth.

Primitive Societies were more "egalitarian," but they were also HIGHLY gender separated. They had very specific and ritualized roles for both genders, and breaking these roles without the proper spiritual sanction got one killed.

I studied the Zuni for a while when I studied under Joseph Campbell when I was younger. Although it was a brief period of study directly under Campbell, I had studied his work for many years before, and studied it for many years afterward.

The Zuni had a traditional Male-Centered religion, which dictated the roles of the genders. They had a successful desert Agrarian Culture, due to irrigation. Like most societies in the New World where Agriculture was practiced (The Iroquois, for instance) there was substantial sharing of agricultural responsibilities.

But that does not an "egalitarian" society make. Women still lacked many rights when it came to tribal authority or religion. About the only thing they had going for them was the ability to divorce (although they rarely had the ability to choose to whom they would marry - which presented a rather complicated marriage system).

And there is absolutely no society known that was "Matriarchal." There have been Matrifocal societies (to which the Iroquois definitely belong), where women held focal roles in the government and religion. But these roles were usually subservient to a larger polity.

And, like most things, the military power (military can also refer to the hunting bands - as the two groups were equivalent) of most primitive societies tended to have the last word on most issues.

But don't take this criticism as an endorsement of the status quo.

It is just that perpetuating a myth does not help to advance the pursuit of knowledge, nor that which is right.

That women are marginalized today does not require us to create a mythology where they were once in power (when they were not).

All that we need in order to demand better protection of women's rights is the fact that those rights are not adequately protected NOW (and that there are people who are actively working to reverse all progress that has been made since the Enlightenment).

Matthew Bailey

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Re: Victim mentality

Post  Eldin Alvere on Fri Nov 02, 2012 6:09 pm

fossil wrote:
And you're wrong.

The Zuni of New Mexico
Iroquois of the "New World"
Cultures of Multiple Fathers in South America

are just a few examples of egalitarian societies. Matriarchies have existed, too. You are apparently ignorant of the last 40 years of anthropology. You are incorrect.

Uh, none of those exist today do they? Once again, read what I said rather than strawmanning me. I did not say none have ever existed and I did not say that none could exist. I said that all societies in the world today are patriarchies. No moderately advanced society has not been a patriarchy. It is only in the last 100 years that technology has advanced to the point where physical strength, speed and endurance were not significant and determining factors in a persons capabilities and function in society.

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Re: Victim mentality

Post  Eldin Alvere on Fri Nov 02, 2012 6:12 pm

Matthew Bailey wrote:
fossil wrote:
Eldin Alvere wrote:
Yes, it was culturally constructed. That doesn't refute what I said nor did I ever state that it was a universal law. I state that all societies in the world are predominately male dominated. .

And you're wrong.

The Zuni of New Mexico
Iroquois of the "New World"
Cultures of Multiple Fathers in South America

are just a few examples of egalitarian societies. Matriarchies have existed, too. You are apparently ignorant of the last 40 years of anthropology. You are incorrect.

I think that you have fallen for a myth.

Primitive Societies were more "egalitarian," but they were also HIGHLY gender separated. They had very specific and ritualized roles for both genders, and breaking these roles without the proper spiritual sanction got one killed.

I studied the Zuni for a while when I studied under Joseph Campbell when I was younger. Although it was a brief period of study directly under Campbell, I had studied his work for many years before, and studied it for many years afterward.

The Zuni had a traditional Male-Centered religion, which dictated the roles of the genders. They had a successful desert Agrarian Culture, due to irrigation. Like most societies in the New World where Agriculture was practiced (The Iroquois, for instance) there was substantial sharing of agricultural responsibilities.

But that does not an "egalitarian" society make. Women still lacked many rights when it came to tribal authority or religion. About the only thing they had going for them was the ability to divorce (although they rarely had the ability to choose to whom they would marry - which presented a rather complicated marriage system).

And there is absolutely no society known that was "Matriarchal." There have been Matrifocal societies (to which the Iroquois definitely belong), where women held focal roles in the government and religion. But these roles were usually subservient to a larger polity.

And, like most things, the military power (military can also refer to the hunting bands - as the two groups were equivalent) of most primitive societies tended to have the last word on most issues.

But don't take this criticism as an endorsement of the status quo.

It is just that perpetuating a myth does not help to advance the pursuit of knowledge, nor that which is right.

That women are marginalized today does not require us to create a mythology where they were once in power (when they were not).

All that we need in order to demand better protection of women's rights is the fact that those rights are not adequately protected NOW (and that there are people who are actively working to reverse all progress that has been made since the Enlightenment).

Matthew Bailey

What rights are women in America denied? I know there are social issues that still need to be addressed but I can't think of any that are related to rights.

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Re: Victim mentality

Post  Matthew Bailey on Fri Nov 02, 2012 6:13 pm

Eldin Alvere wrote:
fossil wrote:
And you're wrong.

The Zuni of New Mexico
Iroquois of the "New World"
Cultures of Multiple Fathers in South America

are just a few examples of egalitarian societies. Matriarchies have existed, too. You are apparently ignorant of the last 40 years of anthropology. You are incorrect.

Uh, none of those exist today do they? Once again, read what I said rather than strawmanning me. I did not say none have ever existed and I did not say that none could exist. I said that all societies in the world today are patriarchies. No moderately advanced society has not been a patriarchy. It is only in the last 100 years that technology has advanced to the point where physical strength, speed and endurance were not significant and determining factors in a persons capabilities and function in society.

Well... If you go by what you wrote, she missed the point (that all societies on Earth today are dominated by Males).

But the societies that she points out were rather "Progressive" for their times, even if it is a bit of a myth that Matriarchal Societies existed. The Zuni and Iroquois were very Matrifocal societies, in that they did have women in positions of power that didn't exist in other societies at their point of social and technological development.

Matthew Bailey

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Re: Victim mentality

Post  Matthew Bailey on Fri Nov 02, 2012 6:22 pm

Eldin Alvere wrote:
Matthew Bailey wrote:
fossil wrote:
Eldin Alvere wrote:
Yes, it was culturally constructed. That doesn't refute what I said nor did I ever state that it was a universal law. I state that all societies in the world are predominately male dominated. .

And you're wrong.

The Zuni of New Mexico
Iroquois of the "New World"
Cultures of Multiple Fathers in South America

are just a few examples of egalitarian societies. Matriarchies have existed, too. You are apparently ignorant of the last 40 years of anthropology. You are incorrect.

I think that you have fallen for a myth.

Primitive Societies were more "egalitarian," but they were also HIGHLY gender separated. They had very specific and ritualized roles for both genders, and breaking these roles without the proper spiritual sanction got one killed.

I studied the Zuni for a while when I studied under Joseph Campbell when I was younger. Although it was a brief period of study directly under Campbell, I had studied his work for many years before, and studied it for many years afterward.

The Zuni had a traditional Male-Centered religion, which dictated the roles of the genders. They had a successful desert Agrarian Culture, due to irrigation. Like most societies in the New World where Agriculture was practiced (The Iroquois, for instance) there was substantial sharing of agricultural responsibilities.

But that does not an "egalitarian" society make. Women still lacked many rights when it came to tribal authority or religion. About the only thing they had going for them was the ability to divorce (although they rarely had the ability to choose to whom they would marry - which presented a rather complicated marriage system).

And there is absolutely no society known that was "Matriarchal." There have been Matrifocal societies (to which the Iroquois definitely belong), where women held focal roles in the government and religion. But these roles were usually subservient to a larger polity.

And, like most things, the military power (military can also refer to the hunting bands - as the two groups were equivalent) of most primitive societies tended to have the last word on most issues.

But don't take this criticism as an endorsement of the status quo.

It is just that perpetuating a myth does not help to advance the pursuit of knowledge, nor that which is right.

That women are marginalized today does not require us to create a mythology where they were once in power (when they were not).

All that we need in order to demand better protection of women's rights is the fact that those rights are not adequately protected NOW (and that there are people who are actively working to reverse all progress that has been made since the Enlightenment).

Matthew Bailey

What rights are women in America denied? I know there are social issues that still need to be addressed but I can't think of any that are related to rights.

First, I was talking about protecting rights that a rather sizable demographic is working very hard to remove.

And...

There are still quite a few rights that women (and other minority groups) do not have as de facto rights.

They might have those rights as de jure rights (by law), but enforcing many of those rights has proved problematic.

For instance, it was not until this year that women were required by law to receive equal pay.

And compliance with the law is hardly even begun.

So that is a right that women need.

Then there is the right to access to medical care that is equivalent to that provided to men. Men's healthcare coverage extends to reproductive health. Yet it does not for women in most states, and the ACA (Affordable Care Act) is being contested pretty vigorously by a large segment of the population who object to it on entirely specious grounds. That is an attempt to deny rights to women (among others).

And the issue surrounding rape is still an area where women's rights are not protected.

I will admit that the rights of a man who has been raped are even less protected than those of women.

But this does not excuse the denial of those rights for women. That would be trying to excuse the absence of those rights based upon two things that are wrong, as if they somehow amount to a correct (right) response.

Women do get raped far more than men. And thus their rights are naturally going to be more visible when they are infringed.

So this is a problem regardless of any problems regarding men who get raped.

Matthew Bailey

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Re: Victim mentality

Post  Eldin Alvere on Fri Nov 02, 2012 6:25 pm

Matthew Bailey wrote:
Eldin Alvere wrote:
fossil wrote:
And you're wrong.

The Zuni of New Mexico
Iroquois of the "New World"
Cultures of Multiple Fathers in South America

are just a few examples of egalitarian societies. Matriarchies have existed, too. You are apparently ignorant of the last 40 years of anthropology. You are incorrect.

Uh, none of those exist today do they? Once again, read what I said rather than strawmanning me. I did not say none have ever existed and I did not say that none could exist. I said that all societies in the world today are patriarchies. No moderately advanced society has not been a patriarchy. It is only in the last 100 years that technology has advanced to the point where physical strength, speed and endurance were not significant and determining factors in a persons capabilities and function in society.

Well... If you go by what you wrote, she missed the point (that all societies on Earth today are dominated by Males).

But the societies that she points out were rather "Progressive" for their times, even if it is a bit of a myth that Matriarchal Societies existed. The Zuni and Iroquois were very Matrifocal societies, in that they did have women in positions of power that didn't exist in other societies at their point of social and technological development.

Matthew Bailey

So? She said I was wrong. I was not. Pretty much all societies that have ever existed were patriarchies. Women get pregnant and men are stronger. Until recently that was all there was too it. Even now, women getting pregnant decreases the chances of a woman rising through the ranks, economically or politically. So even in an egalitarian society, men would still be the dominant gender.

Eldin Alvere

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Re: Victim mentality

Post  Eldin Alvere on Fri Nov 02, 2012 6:43 pm

Matthew Bailey wrote:
First, I was talking about protecting rights that a rather sizable demographic is working very hard to remove.

And...

There are still quite a few rights that women (and other minority groups) do not have as de facto rights.

They might have those rights as de jure rights (by law), but enforcing many of those rights has proved problematic.

For instance, it was not until this year that women were required by law to receive equal pay.

And compliance with the law is hardly even begun.

So that is a right that women need.

Then there is the right to access to medical care that is equivalent to that provided to men. Men's healthcare coverage extends to reproductive health. Yet it does not for women in most states, and the ACA (Affordable Care Act) is being contested pretty vigorously by a large segment of the population who object to it on entirely specious grounds. That is an attempt to deny rights to women (among others).

And the issue surrounding rape is still an area where women's rights are not protected.

I will admit that the rights of a man who has been raped are even less protected than those of women.

But this does not excuse the denial of those rights for women. That would be trying to excuse the absence of those rights based upon two things that are wrong, as if they somehow amount to a correct (right) response.

Women do get raped far more than men. And thus their rights are naturally going to be more visible when they are infringed.

So this is a problem regardless of any problems regarding men who get raped.

Matthew Bailey

Yes, but it's a gradually dwindling faction.

A right to equal pay? I don't think that's a right.

While I support women having access to birth control, I don't see it as a right. I don't view medical care as a right. Furthermore, more money is spent on women's health care than on men's health care. Far more money goes to researching woman health issues than men's health issues. Finally, far more organizations, private and public, are set up entirely to cater to woman's health care issues. Sorry, but this is an area where I think men are getting screwed over more than women.

How are a woman's rights not protected where rape are concerned?

I do not want anyone's rights to be denied, man or woman.

Eldin Alvere

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Re: Victim mentality

Post  Skep tickle on Sat Nov 03, 2012 4:40 pm

Eldin Alvere wrote:Yes, but it's a gradually dwindling faction.

A right to equal pay? I don't think that's a right.

While I support women having access to birth control, I don't see it as a right. I don't view medical care as a right. Furthermore, more money is spent on women's health care than on men's health care. Far more money goes to researching woman health issues than men's health issues. Finally, far more organizations, private and public, are set up entirely to cater to woman's health care issues. Sorry, but this is an area where I think men are getting screwed over more than women.

How are a woman's rights not protected where rape are concerned?

I do not want anyone's rights to be denied, man or woman.
Eldin Alvere, what do you see as rights that anyone & everyone, man or woman, have or should have?

Would it make any difference to your assessment if "right to equal pay" were instead phrased as: "legal right to equal pay for equal work"? (meaning same work, not 2 different types of work someone has decided is equivalent)

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Re: Victim mentality

Post  Matthew Bailey on Sat Nov 03, 2012 7:19 pm

Eldin Alvere wrote:
Matthew Bailey wrote:
First, I was talking about protecting rights that a rather sizable demographic is working very hard to remove.

And...

There are still quite a few rights that women (and other minority groups) do not have as de facto rights.

They might have those rights as de jure rights (by law), but enforcing many of those rights has proved problematic.

For instance, it was not until this year that women were required by law to receive equal pay.

And compliance with the law is hardly even begun.

So that is a right that women need.

Then there is the right to access to medical care that is equivalent to that provided to men. Men's healthcare coverage extends to reproductive health. Yet it does not for women in most states, and the ACA (Affordable Care Act) is being contested pretty vigorously by a large segment of the population who object to it on entirely specious grounds. That is an attempt to deny rights to women (among others).

And the issue surrounding rape is still an area where women's rights are not protected.

I will admit that the rights of a man who has been raped are even less protected than those of women.

But this does not excuse the denial of those rights for women. That would be trying to excuse the absence of those rights based upon two things that are wrong, as if they somehow amount to a correct (right) response.

Women do get raped far more than men. And thus their rights are naturally going to be more visible when they are infringed.

So this is a problem regardless of any problems regarding men who get raped.

Matthew Bailey

Yes, but it's a gradually dwindling faction.

A right to equal pay? I don't think that's a right.

So, you don't think that someone has the right to be payed equally for equal talent or ability?

So, someone can pay me 50% of what they are paying someone else for the exact same job? Simply because "They want to?"


Eldin Alvere wrote:While I support women having access to birth control, I don't see it as a right. I don't view medical care as a right. Furthermore, more money is spent on women's health care than on men's health care. Far more money goes to researching woman health issues than men's health issues. Finally, far more organizations, private and public, are set up entirely to cater to woman's health care issues. Sorry, but this is an area where I think men are getting screwed over more than women.

How are a woman's rights not protected where rape are concerned?

I do not want anyone's rights to be denied, man or woman.

That's a pretty grim belief.

Believing that Health Care is not a right is the same thing as saying that the right to life is not a right.

Health Care IS The right to Life.

Without Health Care, we DIE YOUNG, usually of dental problems.

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Re: Victim mentality

Post  Callie on Tue Nov 06, 2012 10:44 pm

Pitchguest wrote:While I didn't intend to spend my time on the Atheism Plus site more than I cared for, I've encountered the argument of victim mentality more than once.

It appears that if you've been sexually assaulted, or raped, or if you've suffered racism or homophobia then you're free to use that as an excuse for pretty much...everything. I'm of the contention that kind of mentality is counterproductive. I realise I'm speaking as a person with a fair complexion, straight, who has neither been sexually assaulted nor raped in his life, but bear with me. I don't know the minds of rape victims so this is only based on my own presumptions, but I imagine a rape victim in the aftermath must feel devastated. I imagine they feel their worth as a human being has been reduced to someone's plaything. However, I also imagine that they want to put the whole thing behind them. By which I mean don't forget it ever happened, but don't let it get them down. That they wouldn't allow it to become a crutch. I imagine it's painful for them to relive the experience and thus I don't imagine they would allow for that experience to decorate their life onwards.

I suppose it's the same (or similar) with those who've suffered from racist remarks or violence from racism, homophobia or violence from homophobia, that they wouldn't allow the fact that they are black or gay and that they might experience hateful remarks or violence to characterise their entire existence. I recognise I talk from a position of "privilege" (in scare quotes because I really hate that word) but I just don't think anyone would allow themselves to remain a perpetual victim for the rest of their life to wear as a sort of "badge of honour" just so they can use it ward off criticism (not to do with their race or sexuality). Am I wrong? Am I completely backwards in this? Thoughts, please.


Well said. One of the first things I noticed about A+. Wha wha wha, the white boys are sooo mean! I'm a victim so I get to shit all over you if I don't like the way you think. Wha Wha Whaaa!

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Re: Victim mentality

Post  Matthew Bailey on Tue Nov 06, 2012 11:43 pm

Callie wrote:
Pitchguest wrote:While I didn't intend to spend my time on the Atheism Plus site more than I cared for, I've encountered the argument of victim mentality more than once.

It appears that if you've been sexually assaulted, or raped, or if you've suffered racism or homophobia then you're free to use that as an excuse for pretty much...everything. I'm of the contention that kind of mentality is counterproductive. I realise I'm speaking as a person with a fair complexion, straight, who has neither been sexually assaulted nor raped in his life, but bear with me. I don't know the minds of rape victims so this is only based on my own presumptions, but I imagine a rape victim in the aftermath must feel devastated. I imagine they feel their worth as a human being has been reduced to someone's plaything. However, I also imagine that they want to put the whole thing behind them. By which I mean don't forget it ever happened, but don't let it get them down. That they wouldn't allow it to become a crutch. I imagine it's painful for them to relive the experience and thus I don't imagine they would allow for that experience to decorate their life onwards.

I suppose it's the same (or similar) with those who've suffered from racist remarks or violence from racism, homophobia or violence from homophobia, that they wouldn't allow the fact that they are black or gay and that they might experience hateful remarks or violence to characterise their entire existence. I recognise I talk from a position of "privilege" (in scare quotes because I really hate that word) but I just don't think anyone would allow themselves to remain a perpetual victim for the rest of their life to wear as a sort of "badge of honour" just so they can use it ward off criticism (not to do with their race or sexuality). Am I wrong? Am I completely backwards in this? Thoughts, please.


Well said. One of the first things I noticed about A+. Wha wha wha, the white boys are sooo mean! I'm a victim so I get to shit all over you if I don't like the way you think. Wha Wha Whaaa!

They are essentially demanding the right to do something wrong because someone did something wrong to them.

This is like trying to blame an abusive attack on the victim, because the victim once did something wrong.

You don't get to behave like a dick just because someone else was a dick.

You don't get to shoot someone in the face, just because that person has shot someone in the face.

Vendetta Politics leaves the entire world crippled.

Or, if you take the (slightly false - I'll get to that in a second) expression:

An eye for an eye leaves the entire world blind
(technically, it leaves one guy with one eye left)

But that is still not a preferable option.

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Re: Victim mentality

Post  Chart#3 on Mon Jan 14, 2013 5:16 am

Pitchguest wrote:While I didn't intend to spend my time on the Atheism Plus site more than I cared for, I've encountered the argument of victim mentality more than once.

It appears that if you've been sexually assaulted, or raped, or if you've suffered racism or homophobia then you're free to use that as an excuse for pretty much...everything. I'm of the contention that kind of mentality is counterproductive. I realise I'm speaking as a person with a fair complexion, straight, who has neither been sexually assaulted nor raped in his life, but bear with me. I don't know the minds of rape victims so this is only based on my own presumptions, but I imagine a rape victim in the aftermath must feel devastated. I imagine they feel their worth as a human being has been reduced to someone's plaything. However, I also imagine that they want to put the whole thing behind them. By which I mean don't forget it ever happened, but don't let it get them down. That they wouldn't allow it to become a crutch. I imagine it's painful for them to relive the experience and thus I don't imagine they would allow for that experience to decorate their life onwards.

I suppose it's the same (or similar) with those who've suffered from racist remarks or violence from racism, homophobia or violence from homophobia, that they wouldn't allow the fact that they are black or gay and that they might experience hateful remarks or violence to characterise their entire existence. I recognise I talk from a position of "privilege" (in scare quotes because I really hate that word) but I just don't think anyone would allow themselves to remain a perpetual victim for the rest of their life to wear as a sort of "badge of honour" just so they can use it ward off criticism (not to do with their race or sexuality). Am I wrong? Am I completely backwards in this? Thoughts, please.

I think the real issue is that people who have suffered from abuse or marginalization at some point in their life become hypersensitive to anything with the slightest hint of invalidation. The problem is there's a lot of gray area where constructive criticism can easily be interpreted as an invalidation. That probably stems from the fact that we do live in a society where a lot of people are cluelessly ignorant or even intentionally invalidating. Sadly, I think no matter how nicely you try to word something all they will ever see is a rude "get over it" jumping out in their face. It's not that they don't want to move on, it's that they don't want to be told that they should move on. It really has to be on their own initiative.

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