I was watching a video the other day about homophobia. It was a response by an atheist, who publishes under the name CosmicSkeptic, to a theist’s video in which he stated all homosexuals should be eradicated.
The video title actually used the word “kill”, not “eradicate”, which is not necessarily the same thing, a point made by the atheist.
The video referenced above is a comprehensive and rational response, but the following comment from the homophobe is what really got me wondering:
“If you’re not creating anything, you’re destroying something.”
This was said in the context of having children, and while CosmicSkeptic addressed this statement, it’s not what prompted my thoughts.
One of the trends that seems to be prevalent these days is binary thinking — black or white, good or bad, left or right, etc. Too many people seem to forget about all the shades of grey in between the two extremes.
And I wonder, what has caused this?
Has it always been like this, and I’m only noticing it recently? Or is something happening to cause this change?
You could look at the homophobe’s background as a theist and say that this binary thinking results from religious instruction, which encourages black or white thinking.
But is it also a result of a failed education system? Are people becoming unable to think critically and understand that very few issues are at either end of any spectrum?
Another possibility is a lack of empathy. If you cannot see things from somebody else’s perspective, does that lead you naturally to an us vs them attitude? I am right therefore you must be wrong, with no middle ground?
Because the fallacy (i.e. a false dichotomy) in this theist’s statement is obvious — there are other alternatives to creating or destroying. It’s like a car — you have forward gears, you have a reverse gear, and then you have neutral. If you’re not moving forward (i.e. creating, from the theist’s perspective), that doesn’t mean you are moving backwards (i.e. destroying); you might be standing still.
It seems so obvious to me, to the point where I don’t get how others cannot see this. But I suppose that once you are trapped in a particular mindset, it’s difficult to see it. It’s almost like the Dunning–Kruger effect, which is often paraphrased to say that stupid people are too stupid to realize they’re stupid.
His other attitudes about homosexuality, which show similar signs of prejudice, are easily refuted, as CosmicSkeptic does.
My concern is that there are too many people who think like this theist. Not specifically about sexuality, although that’s true too, but about many different issues.
An obvious example would be politics. It’s highly implausible that any one political candidate matches up with all of your own views on how a country should be run. But given that there are only a handful of viable parties — some would argue as few as two — then you end up being forced to compromise, prioritizing what you think is necessary vs nice to have.
And that is, of course, assuming that people vote for candidates based on any sort of rational analysis. My suspicion is that many don’t. Many political leanings tend to run in families and communities in the same way that religion often does.
Even if they did, the two main parties are so similar these days in many ways, does it genuinely make a difference? The voters have been told for years to vote for the lesser of two evils. But somewhere along the way, they seem to forget that they are still voting for evil. Why are the American people being offered any evil candidates, and why are they so accepting of this situation?
I see this a lot on Facebook, particularly of late, and I find it both sad and funny that people are so vociferous and outraged about the perceived crimes of the other party, as though their own were snow white and honest.
The problem is that people have been hoodwinked by manipulative strategies into not recognizing who the real enemy is here.
And it’s not the politicians. It’s the people pulling their strings.
I remember when I first saw Rollerball (the original movie, not that horrendous remake), and thinking that, yes, one day, the corporations will rule the planet. They probably have for a long time, but in Rollerball, it’s visible — they no longer try to hide the fact.
And that’s where I think we are, and if we’re not all the way there yet, then we’re definitely heading in that direction. It’s probably also not the corporations per se, but the people in control of them, some of whom are members of dynasties who have been around for centuries.
You only have to look at what happened in 2020 to realize that those people are treated very differently to regular folk. Their businesses weren’t shut down, you rarely see those people following their own rules, and they have continued to receive their paychecks while millions are without their jobs or businesses.
It was probably ever so, but it appears they’ve finally agreed to pull back the curtain. And I can only assume this means the puppet masters think they’re past the point of no return now and into the end game.