When is the truth no longer the truth? When does manipulation of truth to fit an agenda become deceit? That’s where we seem to be today, here in SF at least. Watching the fallout over many of the recent scandals has been painful at best for me. I’ll admit the resulting vitriol being leveled at each other has really hurt my faith in the community. The fallout has shaken my normally optimistic view of us in general.
From a purely personal POV, it’s been very painful to witness disingenuous tactics and behavior from peers I look up to. It’s a hard pill to swallow. Having never lost a hero or role model, I am still struggling with it. I am saddened to see us so divided and treating each other so horribly. Be it adult actor suicides, the nudity ban, the march to equality, or the Bradley Manning caper, the hate, vitriol, anger, and condescension have all shown a fundamental shift in our ability to express ourselves as well as a renewed since of victimization. We are turning to rule based consequentialism as a moral code; the idea that ethics of the moral right/wrong are based solely on the consequences. (I know, my big word of the day. See, I really do educate myself!) Said code is often contradictory and ultimately confusing and leads to cognitive dissonance. (I think my little brain has seen this coming because many of my previous posts have delved into different pieces of the overall issue.)
Looking at it from a purely analytical point of view, the behaviors represent a breakdown in our reasoning thru logical consequence.1 Without reason thru logic, there can be no truth. Like religious fundies, we cannot survive a moral code that is dependent on the outcome vs the cause. And to abandon truth and integrity in favor of bias and personal agendas is a recipe for disaster. That is not to say it was unexpected. After being excluded from society, many of us developed our own system of moral codes. It was simply out of a need to cope with being labeled degenerates and abominations and often being outcasts. The problem with moral codes in general is they are often conflictive between individual communities and society as a whole. It’s even more confusing because we’ve developed moral conflicts even when our own community. As previously alluded to in assimilation, there is a part of our community that has embraced their freedoms from the trappings of the mainstream way of life. They’ve adopted a moral code that is much less restrictive than society at large. And there is nothing inherently wrong with that. But now that the LGBTI community as a whole is being slowly accepted into society, those moral conflicts are creating dissention and fear.
Sadly, many on both sides are abandoning truth in favor of rigidly conservative and intolerant thinking. They bristle at the very idea of compromising. Anyone who disagrees is immediately labeled the enemy, and ironically conservative, as well as having only one goal, the sanitization of gay culture. It is dangerous ground though. To continually conflate every varied issue into one overarching idea of oppression only serves to keep us locked in a pattern of self-inflicted victimization.2 I am somewhat ashamed to see many of said folks have begun to manipulate facts and ‘truth’ based on bias and personal agendas, again much like those who hate us. And the most insidious behavior recently is selling an agenda based on lies laced with a kernel of truth or half truths. A fallacies with enough truth to not only convince you but also invoke an emotional reaction to overwhelm reason thru logical consequence. To me it represents a truly dangerous path that leads to only misery, isolation, and eventually despair for those who take it.
It is my hope that those who fight against the inevitable change, can see that we can coexist. We can move into an era of acceptance and still maintain many of the freedoms we’ve come to love. As previously mentioned, we might lose some of it for a generation, but it will spring back. And lastly, I beg of you, please your case, cause, agenda, desire, etc w/integrity of purpose thru reason of logic and truth. Do not succumb to irrational fears based on selfishness.
As always, hope springs eternal. . .