The Dogs You Lie Down With
So, I posted on facebook about people jumping to conclusions about a friend’s beliefs over his support of SP3 and defriending him, not even based on what SP3 supporters believe, but based on what they’re said to believe by the side in opposition to them.
It didn’t take long before one of my FB “friends” piped up to mention since I worked so hard to get homophobes like John C. Wright and Vox a Hugo, people should think I was an homophobe too.
I pointed out Vox is not on the Hugo ballot and that yes, his house is, but writers have limited choice of where they sell to if they want to make a living. The smart boy TM then moved goal posts (note he’d accused me of having Vox on the ballot) and brought up, out of context (in fact a partial sentence) from John Wright’s post explaining that homophobia as such didn’t exist, that normal people didn’t feel compelled to kill and hurt gay people just because they’re gay. Unfortunately John is a very good writer and the scene was a graphic description of a world in which this happened and in which women randomly beat a lesbian couple to death with ax handles. Note the post was not only to say this doesn’t happen, but also that the quote was lifted wholly out of context.
I pointing this out and I got what I keep getting in this “If you lie down with dogs, you wake up with fleas.”
That is… interesting.
It occurred to me that no one, that I know (and he’d probably tell me, at least for the novelty) has gone to John C. Wright and said “You’re supported by Sarah A. Hoyt, a public and avowed supporter of same sex marriage, who has many gay characters in her books. Therefore, you too must be a public and avowed supporter of same sex marriage, you horrible man.”
Mind you, there are people who consider this position of mine more than they can swallow and who have told me so and told me they’d never read me again. That’s fine by me. I arrived at that decision on my own and by thought. (And I’m not in favor of activist stunts like taking down pizza parlors or forcing religions you don’t even belong to to marry you or to perform ceremonies forbidden by their beliefs. No, supporting SSM doesn’t mean supporting that. I reject guilt by association in all forms.) I’m a big girl and I can wear big girl pants. (As for the gay characters they just happen. It’s like I have a ton of stories by the sea, and no, that’s not where I grew up. Or why I’m infected with dragons. Not everything in art is under your strict control.)
The point is none of my socon readers who found this was a reason to break with me then ran around to all my known associates demanding they eschew their association with me on the basis of this opinion of mine.
However, people are demanding I eschew any association with Vox (which would be easier if I had any. I find his blog abrasive, so I don’t go there. I’ll note, though that even in my brief visits I saw tons of things (economics, opinions about the third world) in which he agrees with the SJWs, but that’s not the opinions they demand I give up. No, it’s always the out of context quotes on something they KNOW I don’t agree with.
As for John C. Wright, his wife and I have been friends forever and I’ve gotten to know John through his writing. John is simply one of the one person in a million who can make “a gift with words” work as a writer. I should know. I also have a gift with words but not to that level. John is our Bradbury or maybe even in time our Borges. Someone whose genius can create a whole new subgenre of literature filled with the career-corpses of would-be imitators.
John is a devout Catholic convert, and his religion has certain beliefs. It also has a demand that you love the sinner – i.e. not harm those of whose behavior you disapprove.
On this, the other side is building a whole charge of “homophobia.”
Again, no one has come to him – to my knowledge – and demand he disavow me for my beliefs. And it’s not that the social conservatives aren’t vehement. It’s just that they – at least the ones involved in this – aren’t evil.
Isn’t evil a strong word to use for this?
No. You see, the whole “lie down with dogs wake up with fleas” is a tactic of evil. It is what permitted the Stalinist purges and the Chinese Cultural Revolution. It is the component of communism that has filled mass graves all over the globe.
Because at the back of progressivism – communism, Leninism, Stalinism, even the varieties of self-declared socialism that infect my field as they once infected the various “Socialist” republics of the twentieth century – lies not a wish to fight for the people or the oppressed or what have you, but the desire to impose your will on others.
Every self-declared socialist who is informed and aware enough to know what they’re talking about (fortunately a minority) is also a self-proclaimed intellectual who thinks that if only he/she had her/his way, then by the benefit of his/her wisdom they could build the world “as it should be.”
You can see this in declarations that “if only the right people were in power” everything would be fine. You can see it in the way they idolize monsters and tyrants, from Lenin to Castro, to Mao to that absolute horror, Che.
Most of all, though, you can see it in the way they demand your allegiance to the tenet of the week.
Those of you who think that this doesn’t happen, that the tenets don’t change, should look at the seventies beliefs on homosexuality which were that it was a choice and should be a choice and came down hard on anyone that said it was inate. Now the required belief is the other way around. (I happened to believe this even when it was unfashionable, because I grew up in a village and saw it run in families in a way it couldn’t be learned. [Two generations apart and sideways. Or gay great uncle having lesbian grand niece, for instance, born after he died.])
With women too, in the seventies it was I am woman, hear me roar. Now women must be protected from a statue of a sleep-walking male and male privilege gives men superpowers that turn the right-thinking women into shrinking violets at a three remove contact.
The only thing that remains the same is that whatever the party line, absolute loyalty is demanded. And you’ll be condemned by third degree hearsay association with someone who believes otherwise.
And this is the problem with the Hugos.
No one who isn’t a progressive SJW has run around screaming that you must disavow third-level links with the racist (and race fabulist) and unhinged K. Tempest Bradford. When we make fun, we make of her (often) but we don’t hunt down through lists of people who might like her stories and run to demand they disavow her.
No one who isn’t a loathsome power freak like the SJWs runs around telling people to disavow the hanger on Cora Buhlert, better known for her screeds calling people Nazis than for her writing. We make fun of the fact that a person who is almost surely the daughter of a DDR apparatchik dares open her mouth to call someone a fascist, but mostly we point and laugh at her. We don’t run around saying everyone who enjoys her writing is complicit in the horrors of life under communism and that her writing should be banned.
These however are all antics of the other side applied to what we’ll call for lack of a better term the SP3 side.
And again, that is what is wrong with the Hugos. And this is why you fight.
When one side demands loyalty oaths to their ever-changing and ever-more-detailed beliefs, and when they consider it a thought-crime to read and enjoy the work of someone you don’t agree with personally, then the Hugos become exactly what we’ve said they’ve become: not a judgement of the best stories, most likely to be enjoyed by fans, but a crowning of the perfect minion willing to follow the “thought leaders” down every twist and turn of their will to power, and say “yes ma’m” or sir, or whatever.
It is a crowning of genetic characteristics, or melanin count or whatever vehicle the SJWs are currently using to get a vice-like grip on the opinions and thought of others.
And that’s what is wrong with it. It no longer has anything to do with great stories.
And that’s why we fight. Disavow Vox and John C. Wright? (Even if I have no association with Vox.) Screw that. I’d ally myself with the devil himself to defend the awards that once meant “Excellence in science fiction” and to disallow the “guilt at a remove” tactics that led to gulags and mass graves.
I don’t want a society in which people can be accused of thought crime. I don’t want to be accused of a society in which I have to police everything my associates, my friends, my children say and do, or suffer for their unguarded words and actions.
And if you don’t like my position, that’s too bad. Put your Che shirt in your pipe and smoke it.
I stand the only place I can stand as a free woman and a free writer.
For the rest of you, I advise watching the dogs you lie down with. Apparently, some of them are ravening power-hungry wolves. And those always eat you in the end.