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Bernardo de La Paz

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Member since: Fri Jul 16, 2004, 11:36 PM
Number of posts: 35,193

About Me

Canadian who lived for many years in Northern California and left a bit of my heart there.

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Important issue, but must not confuse cultural participation with appropriation.

Thank you for starting this thread. It is an interesting topic for me, since I have lived on three continents (Africa, North America, Asia) and visited three others. I may not participate much but I hope to follow it.

Yes, it is not right for example for a non-Native American to wear a First Nations headdress without approval or invitation. This is because those headdresses have important ceremonial functions (as one aspect of the issue).

But that does not mean all headdresses are out of bounds. First Nations headdresses can inspire other creative effort.

This is much in the same line as when African Americans took music from Africa and added English / celtic elements and instrumentation to make something new that all Americans and all the world enjoy. That music has in turn inspired enormous creativity around the world in many cultures, including returning to Africa and re-invigorating music there. The guitar owes a great deal to Spanish development. Is King Sunny Ade culturally appropriating the electric guitar?

If blond women and men are disallowed wearing cornrows and braids and dashiki shirts, are African Americans disallowed wearing suits and buzz cuts? No and no.

Cultural participation can be respectful while encouraging the mixing and creativity.

We (the people of the world) can use all elements of all cultures in respectful ways (which means not in all ways or all situations) while maintaining our identities and the identities of other people and other peoples.
Posted by Bernardo de La Paz | Thu Aug 11, 2016, 07:28 AM (1 replies)

The USA will continue for a long time, but there are troubles that can be avoided.

The rise of China and, later, India will challenge American ascendancy. This will be difficult for the Right Wing Authoritarians and RWA Followers to deal with, especially since the latter are dominated by lesser-informed people.

The greatest hope for world peace, and therefore a continuation of the American way of life and the American dream, is to promote world trade and travel, and (not least) education. World peace includes coordinated global action on vital issues such as climate change.

When there are large middle classes (resulting from education) that consume products and services from all over the world, they do not have an interest in disrupting the world with war. This is the positive side of globalism which must not be overlooked.

Education increases awareness of the diversity of human experience and existence. Education grows economies and increases exports, which earns money to buy the best that the world offers.

Nationalism has terrible downsides. When protectionism closes borders to free(r) flow of people, goods, and services, then there is less interest in world peace, less interest in diversity, less interest in acting together on global problems. Nationalism promotes us-versus-them thinking, which also has very negative effects on tolerance and diversity within the borders of nations (including the US). Racism and bigotry against groups such as LGBTQ increases. It creates fertile ground for conflict and war.
Posted by Bernardo de La Paz | Thu Aug 11, 2016, 07:10 AM (0 replies)

Do some research. Forgiveness is for the person forgiving. The forgiven one doesn't have to know.

Forgiveness does not mean forgetting.

You can forgive someone and still prosecute them to the full extent of the law. You can forgive someone and bankrupt them to make an example of them.

You can make a vow to never communicate with someone ever again but still forgive them and keep your vow.

The point of forgiveness is to obtain inner peace.

By forgiving, a person lets go of toxic emotions and returns to a [font color = "purple"]clearer head,[/font] one where they can deal with problems and root causes more effectively. Ever heard the expression "blind with rage"?

To expect people to deal with it in a society where the term is 'weak and a pussy' if you seek help, the despair never goes away and every day gets worse.

I never said people should be expected to "deal with it" alone.
I explicitly said "people should be helped...", but perhaps you were too angry to read that.

I never said that society was not a big part of the problem.
I explicitly said anger should be "less respected as an emotion". Perhaps I was not clear enough for you or just not clear enough that therefore society is part of the problem and needs to improve.

A case can be made that society is at the root of the problem.

Anger management is seeing justice done and the bullies and antagonists punished!

Wrong. Anger management is about managing emotions. Seeing justice done is not about revenge or retribution. Right wing authoritarian types think that it is. Law & order campaigners take advantage and whip up those emotions.

But in any case, forgiveness is entirely consistent with seeing justice done and bullies punished. In truth, forgiveness enables a person to do that more clearly and more effectively.

Absolutely true that bullying and oppression starts in on young people at a very early age. But when a person is damaged this way, they can get help to deal with their emotions so they can live a more peaceful life. Doing so does not interfere with "targeting the problem". It helps improve the aim and put more power into the arrow.

Progressives are capable of healing (themselves to some extent and with help and helping others) at the same time as they advance causes to solve root problems. Reactive types only see a problem and one reaction.
Posted by Bernardo de La Paz | Fri Aug 5, 2016, 09:41 AM (0 replies)

He appeals to the Right Wing Authoritarian Follower personality type:

See the research by Robert Altemeyer.


RWA is defined as the convergence of three attitudinal clusters:

Authoritarian submission: A high degree of submission to the authorities who are perceived to be established and legitimate in the society in which one lives.
Authoritarian aggression: A general aggressiveness, directed against various persons, that is perceived to be sanctioned by established authorities.
Conventionalism: A high degree of adherence to the social conventions that are perceived to be endorsed by society and its established authorities.

Table 1: Hostility & Fear Toward Outgroups

RWA's are more likely to:

Weaken constitutional guarantees of liberty, such as the Bill of Rights.
Punish severely `common' criminals in a role-playing situation.
Admit they get personal pleasure from punishing such people.
But go easy on authorities who commit crimes and people who attack minorities.
Be prejudiced against many racial, ethnic, nationalistic, and linguistic minorities.
Be hostile toward homosexuals.
Support `gay-bashing.'
Be hostile toward feminists.
Volunteer to help the government persecute almost anyone.
Be mean-spirited toward those who have made mistakes and suffered.
Be fearful of a dangerous world.

Table 2: Not-So-Healthy Ingroup Cohesion

RWA's are more likely to:

Strongly believe in group cohesiveness and `loyalty.'
Insist on traditional sex roles.
Use religion to erase guilt over their acts and to maintain their self-righteousness.
Be `fundamentalists' and the most prejudiced members of whatever religion they belong to.
Accept unfair and illegal abuses of power by government authorities.
Trust leaders (such as Richard Nixon) who are untrustworthy.

Table 3: Faulty reasoning

RWA's are more likely to:

Make many incorrect inferences from evidence.
Hold contradictory ideas leading them to `speak out of both sides of their mouths.'
Uncritically accept that many problems are `our most serious problem.'
Uncritically accept insufficient evidence that supports their beliefs.
Uncritically trust people who tell them what they want to hear.
Use many double standards in their thinking and judgements.

Table 4: Profound Character Flaws

RWA's are more likely to:

Be dogmatic.
Be zealots.
Be hypocrites.
Be bullies when they have power over others.
Help cause and inflame intergroup conflict.
Seek dominance over others by being competitive and destructive in situations requiring cooperation.

Table 5: Blindness To Own Failings

RWA's are more likely to:

Believe they have no personal failings.
Avoid learning about their personal failings.
Be highly self-righteous.
Use religion to erase guilt over their acts and to maintain their self-righteousness.

Table 6: RWA's Political Tendencies

RWA's are more likely to:

Weaken constitutional guarantees of liberty, such as the Bill of Rights.
Accept unfair and illegal abuses of power by government authorities.
Trust leaders (such as Richard Nixon) who are untrustworthy.
Sometimes join left-wing movements, where their hostility distinguishes them.
But much more typically endorse right-wing political parties.
Be conservative/Reform party (Canada) or Republican Party (United States) lawmakers who
have a conservative economic philosophy;
believe in social dominance;
are ethnocentric;
are highly nationalistic;
oppose abortion;
support capital punishment;
oppose gun-control legislation;
say they value freedom but actually want to undermine the Bill of Rights;
do not value equality very highly and oppose measures to increase it;
are not likely to rise in the Democratic party, but do so among Republicans.
Posted by Bernardo de La Paz | Sun Jul 31, 2016, 11:40 PM (1 replies)
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