Wednesday, October 16, 2019

I identify as a Pulitzer-Prize-winning writer

I remember reading some years ago that when a man and a woman are alone together in a room — the very premise shows how many years ago it must have been — there are six people present:

1. The man he actually is.
2. The man he thinks he is.
3. The man she thinks he is.
4. The woman she actually is.
5. The woman she thinks she is.
6. The woman he thinks she is.

Wow, that’s quite a crowd in that room.

At some point between then and now, however, the earth must have shifted.

Today, according to the self-styled movers and shakers, you can be anyone you wish.

The DailyMail.com website for October 14, 2019, had the following headline:

Awkward! Chelsea Clinton emphatically states a person with a beard and a penis can 'absolutely' identify as a woman, while mom Hillary shuffles and looks conflicted as she blames 'generational' differences for not being as open to trans rights

That is not the first paragraph of the article. That is the headline.

Without burdening you further about the article -- you can go read it for yourself if you have a mind to -- I would like to make the following observation.

You can identify as anything that suits your fancy -- a woman, a man, a French poodle, a purple popsicle. The list of possibilities is endless. That is your right as a free moral agent. Have at it. Be my guest.

Whatever you want to identify as is fine with me -- a Douglas fir, a lake in the Adirondacks, a Doberman Pinscher, a medium-sized courgette (that's U.K.-speak for zucchini) -- anything at all.

But here’s the thing. Identifying as a zucchini or a whatever doesn't mean you are one.

As Popeye the Sailor Man may or may not have once said, "You are what you are, and that's all that you are."

He couldn't live without his can of spinach. Lucy couldn't live without Ricky Ricardo. Kim Kardashian can't live without her Kanye. It takes all kinds.

As to how I (or we) should treat people with different-from-the-mainstream ideas, the Golden Rule should always be kept in mind: Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.

Many people’s credo seems to be Do unto others before they get a chance to do unto you.

Some groups, like Antifa on the one hand and neo-Nazis on the other, carry this idea to extremes and physically attack anyone who disagrees with them they perceive as standing in the way of accomplishing their agenda.

How I (or we) should treat Antifa or neo-Nazis is a topic for a different post.

This post is too discombobulated to win a Pulitzer Prize, but on the off-chance that the selection committee picks me, tell them to send the money to Tahiti, which is where I identify as currently living.

15 comments:

  1. I currently identify as living next door to you in Tahiti. Right now Mrs RWP and I are having nice cool drinks on the beach as we watch the waves roll in.

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  2. Do unto others is indeed a golden rule, one which seems to have slipped from too many people's grasp.
    I would add another. Be kind.

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    1. Sue, it's another way of saying the same thing, I think.

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  3. I don't care how a person identifies as long as they are kind and respectful. I do agree with you about the golden rule too but I think a lot of people in this world must not have learned about it.

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    1. Bonnie, Christianity has been saying it for 2000 years now, and I think Buddhism has a negative version along the lines of not doing to others what you wouldn't want them do to you. Still, that leaves billions and billions of people, you are right.

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  4. I identify you as Pulitzer winning

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    1. kylie, now if we can only get you on the selection comittee....

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  5. Thanks for the reminder about the golden rule.
    Crazy world we live in...

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    1. Kathy, one of my mother's favorite quotes was an old Quaker saying, everybody's crazy except me and thee, and even thee is a little bit crazy.

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  6. Hmmm... lots of food for conversation here, let alone food for thought... eg the sliding scale of morality vs truths and ethics. But you are right, it all boils down to kindness. Trouble is, I am often kinder to strangers than I have been (in the past especially) to myself, so the 'do unto others' thing doesn't hold up in my case. But what does, is LOVE. And sunshine and Tahiti. See you there!

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    1. Kate, LOVE, sunshine and Tahiti -- who could ask for anything more?

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  7. I identify as an Italian gigolo, weaving through the streets of Verona on my Lambretta motor scooter as I hurry to my next appointment. It's tiring being a gigolo but someone's got to do it. I think of it as a vital social service.

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  8. Yorkshire Pudding (Neil), why am I not surprised?

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