Why I am not an “ally”.

There is a reason I keep myself semi-anonymous on this blog.

Don’t get me wrong. You could probably track me down if you wanted to put forth the effort. There are enough clues in this blog to get a general idea of where I live, etc. But I’ve intentionally made it difficult. I did this because I want at least some freedom to say what I want to without fear of some moron going to my workplace and trying to get me fired. I doubt it would work, as my workplace is better than most at respecting everyone, including folks like me, but I don’t need the trouble. Even on Facebook, I don’t broadcast who I work for, and I deleted my LinkedIn profile, again, for that reason.

I did this because social justice warriors are short-sighted idiots who would rather shut down opinions that they don’t agree with than debate them on their merits.

Are there some opinions that are beyond the pale? Yeah. I think any right-thinking person would agree that supporting the actions of a certain German dude with a distinctive mustache should never be tolerated. Personally, I try to separate the actions from the person (until he killed his dog, I doubt his dog cared), but even so, that’s intolerable. However, I think those that hold that opinion should be allowed to express it – even if only so that the rest of us know what they think and can avoid them.

But there are many other opinions that do not rise to that level of malevolence, and sane people can disagree with them. There are quite a few debates going on right now about all sorts of different topics, and I happen to hold my own opinion on them. I won’t go into them right now except to say that they generally are directly opposed to what leftist orthodoxy things they should be. I didn’t come to these opinions through hatred or malice, I came to them by thinking through the problem and coming to a different conclusion.

So why am I not an ally? Well, the first answer is, this isn’t a war. Or shouldn’t be, anyway.

But the second answer is that the idea of being an ally is predicated on the idea that I must support someone in some aspect of their identity in such a way as they deem appropriate. If I were to, for an example, call myself an ally to women, I would be ceding control of my autonomy to them, because they would then have a right to dictate what is appropriate in my behavior, words, and thought. I’m not interested in ceding that kind of control to any group. How I think, speak, and act towards someone or a group of people is a negotiation, not something that may be dictated. Want to be treated in a certain way? Act in a way in which you prove you deserve to be treated that way, and I’ll likely cooperate. Don’t, and I won’t.

But allies don’t get that freedom.

This is why I refuse to consider myself an ally of any group. It’s the same reason why I refuse to keep my mouth closed when it would probably be better for me if I did. I’m not willing or prepared to cede my personal autonomy at the altar of social justice. If I think a cause is worth supporting, I’ll support it. If I don’t, I won’t. But ultimately, that’s my choice, and it’s a choice I refuse to cede to anyone else, no matter what pressure is brought to bear.

Keep in mind that in this post I am not speaking against or for any aspect of social justice (except for the concept of allyship). I’m simply stating that I reserve the unequivocal right to decide whether to do that for myself. And, sadly, even that can be enough to get one in trouble. But given my personality, there is little to be done about that..

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