How do we eliminate/minimize racism/sexism/<group>ism?

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How do we eliminate/minimize racism/sexism/<group>ism?

Postby CorruptUser » Fri Nov 12, 2010 3:19 am UTC

For the purposes of this discussion, all irrational forms of discrimination will be called "groupism". Ageism, Sexism, Racism, Deism (that's the correct term for discrimination based on religion, right?), are all just a few examples.

I think we can all agree, groupism is a disadvantage for a society. By preventing someone access to education/career/whatever based on their demographic alone denies the world anything that person would have accomplished. The question is, how do we deal with the endemic problem of groupism?

There are at least three major beliefs as to what is the solution.


The first camp is that the problem belongs to the group in question, and is the affected group's job to fix it. To me, this is blaming the victim. Before you stick your nose up in the air, keep in mind that if you agree with the pound cake speech, you fall in this camp.

The second camp is that the problem belongs to the people at the other end. The group that is "oppressing" needs to be re-educated or properly educated or whatever, and so forth.

The third camp is that the problem is not the fault of the victim or the oppressor, but of the structure of society. The solution here would be to, well, restructure society in some way. Or at least change the laws.


Then there is a fourth camp, the Libertarian argument, though it's much smaller than the others (at least from what I see). As racism is irrational no solution is the solution.
Spoiler:
For example, let's say a restaurant refuses to hire brunette waiters. Blondes will get paid more, because they are in higher demand. But the other restaurants in the area will hire the cheaper brunette waiters and undercut the first restaurant, driving it out of business. For an example of how this works in the real world, the Brooklyn Dodgers began winning many games after getting Jackie Robinson. The extra wins translated to more ticket sales, and soon other baseball teams realized that they had to allow all players on their team, regardless of demographics.

All except the Red Sox that is, which is why they were the worst team for decades.


Obviously, not all types of groupism may all belong to the same camp; it's possible that agism might be in the third camp but racism in the second camp. The camps are not mutually exclusive; it's possible to believe that both oppressor and victim are in part responsible for groupism.

Any thoughts?
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Re: How do we eliminate/minimize racism/sexism/<group>ism?

Postby Lazar » Fri Nov 12, 2010 3:23 am UTC

CorruptUser wrote:Deism (that's the correct term for discrimination based on religion, right?)

No.
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Re: How do we eliminate/minimize racism/sexism/<group>ism?

Postby CorruptUser » Fri Nov 12, 2010 3:24 am UTC

So what's the correct term?
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Re: How do we eliminate/minimize racism/sexism/<group>ism?

Postby Lazar » Fri Nov 12, 2010 3:35 am UTC

Religious discrimination? Or you could use bigotry, which is defined as intolerance of different beliefs and opinions. (People misuse the shit out of that word, by the way.)
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Re: How do we eliminate/minimize racism/sexism/<group>ism?

Postby excalion » Fri Nov 12, 2010 12:38 pm UTC

The answer to your question actually depends greatly on how you choose to define the word "eliminate".

If you choose to define it as the eradication of group-ism completely within the minds of people, you would need to either restructure all humans to make everyone the exact copies of everyone else or forcibly remove the instinct for people to feel pride towards their own groups. Both of these solutions, while fixing the group-ism problem, create more severe problems of their own.

On the other hand, if you choose to define eliminate as having a society where people are given enough freedom to acquire the basic fulfillments of life without meeting resistance caused by discrimination, all you need to do is make any offender pay a hefty fine. Which is basically how the Western world is handling the problem. Note that this doesn't actually remove racists from society, it just makes so they are discouraged from acting out their tendencies.
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Re: How do we eliminate/minimize racism/sexism/<group>ism?

Postby Arrian » Fri Nov 12, 2010 1:59 pm UTC

CorruptUser wrote:Then there is a fourth camp, the Libertarian argument, though it's much smaller than the others (at least from what I see). As racism is irrational no solution is the solution. For example, let's say a restaurant refuses to hire brunette waiters. Blondes will get paid more, because they are in higher demand. But the other restaurants in the area will hire the cheaper brunette waiters and undercut the first restaurant, driving it out of business.


That's only one possible outcome. Discrimination can be profit-maximizing as well if you are catering to your customers' bigotry. Take Hooters, for example: Even if pretty, racked waitresses are more expensive to hire they are making more money because they are catering to the horny male crowd. Even in a competitive market, not all discrimination will be eliminated.

On the other hand, the libertarian perspective is that people should be free to choose who they do or don't associate with, so discrimination by private firms and individuals isn't a big deal. Using government power to enforce your discrimination choices is the problem.

I don't think you will ever eliminate bigotry or discrimination so long as there is an in group/out group dichotomy in peoples' minds. And that's ingrained about as deeply as anything, I'm not even sure if you'd be able to have a society as we understand it without that distinction.
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Re: How do we eliminate/minimize racism/sexism/<group>ism?

Postby CorruptUser » Fri Nov 12, 2010 3:54 pm UTC

Arrian wrote:That's only one possible outcome. Discrimination can be profit-maximizing as well if you are catering to your customers' bigotry. Take Hooters, for example: Even if pretty, racked waitresses are more expensive to hire they are making more money because they are catering to the horny male crowd. Even in a competitive market, not all discrimination will be eliminated.


In this case, the fault of groupism lies with the general public, or at least the section of the public that wants pretty, racked waitresses. Not with the restaurant owner, and not with the mosquito bite waitresses. So it would be rather unfair to punish the Hooters manager with a hefty fine for doing what (I'm assuming) his customers want.

In less recent times, there was the case of Jim Crow and the transportation businesses. As far as the businesses were concerned, they could care less who you have to sit next to, so long as you buy a ticket. Just ask any comedian about plane travel. Wait, no, don't ask. It makes no economic sense to have "white class cars" and "black class cars", especially when that means you have to haul empty cars. As far as the trains were concerned, they would do this if they could get away with it. The problem of Jim Crow was the fault of the racist people who would not buy a ticket if it meant they had to sit near a black person, and the fault of the lawmakers who were elected in part because of said person.
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Re: How do we eliminate/minimize racism/sexism/<group>ism?

Postby mmmcannibalism » Fri Nov 12, 2010 6:19 pm UTC

Aside; your libertarian argument is different from the others. 1-3 deal with how we as people should try and eliminate groupism; your libertarian argument only deals with a perspective on what role the government should play in relation to private discrimination.

edit--Important thing being; your views on what individuals should do to combat groupism and what the government should do are not mutually exclusive. You can be a racist who supports government involvement in private affairs to enforce racism, or a non racist who wants government to prevent private discrimination, or any combination of the above 2.
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Re: How do we eliminate/minimize racism/sexism/<group>ism?

Postby Greyarcher » Fri Nov 12, 2010 8:05 pm UTC

Well, I imagine the most effective method is to make as pervasive as possible the view that Bigotry Type-X is not proper, and then wait decades for the previous generations to die while hoping new generations are exposed to your preferred view and shift away from Bigotry Type-X.

Many folks are set in their ways and aren't going to change their minds, but they'll die eventually. It's newer generations who are still forming their world views who are, I suspect, the most relevant.
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Re: How do we eliminate/minimize racism/sexism/<group>ism?

Postby zookap » Fri Nov 12, 2010 8:06 pm UTC

I think a better question to ask is what we can do to eliminate the negative consequences of groupism rather than eliminate groupism itself which is not possible (nor does it fall outside the label of groupism.) It is not up to anyone to decide that anyone else's beliefs should be eliminated. If they act illegally on those beliefs then that is a different story because that can effect you. Beating people up with baseball bats is ILLEGAL, you can't do it. It doesn't matter if you beat a person up because you don't like that he is black or because of some other reason, you still can't do it. So eliminating the negative consequences of groupism is largely just enforcing the regular laws WITHOUT acknowledging that any person belongs to any group. I am strongly libertarian when it comes to this issue. There should be no "hate crimes" because that sets the precedent that people can be punished differently depending on what groups they belong to, which is BULLSHIT. There should also, as I think someone mentioned, be no laws telling private business owners who to associate with. A private business owner doesn't own a store, he owns a specially decorated house which he invites people into to browse his wares. If he doesn't want gay people in his house, well it's HIS house right? Once he makes that decision everybody is obligated to boycott the store or give him a piece of their minds but you can't force him to do business with people who he doesn't want to.

I think the trick to reducing the negative impact of groupism is... well.... to really just shut the fuck up about it. Again, someone's beliefs or even words can't do ANYTHING to you, only their actions. If someome is assaulted there is a problem, otherwise there isn't. Lately I've seen people going to great lengths to be offended by groupism, specifically by racism. I remember on the news there was a segment about an 'incident' in which someone got on the loudspeaker at Wal Mart and said "all black people need to leave the store." This idiotic prank got national attention and so did the black woman who began to cry and talk about how deeply upsetting that day had been. Was the news coverage really necessary? All it did was show people that racist words can somehow cause great inner pain to black people. All that should have happened is that the people in the store should have found it slightly amusing. Why give those actions so much undeserved power? If everyone had "just shut the fuck up" there would have been no negative impact from groupism that day. The worst example of everyone not just shutting up is the "N" word. It's just a WORD people. It is not a magic incantation designed to cause great pain upon utterance.
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Re: How do we eliminate/minimize racism/sexism/<group>ism?

Postby distractedSofty » Fri Nov 12, 2010 8:33 pm UTC

I think that most "groupism" derives from there being an us/them dichotomy in people's minds. We've seen how good our mind is at finding patterns, so the answer is to make that "pattern" as broad as possible. We need people to interact with as many religions/races/sexes(?) as they can in situations where that is not the focus, and then "us" will become everyone with whom you interact.

zookap wrote: Again, someone's [...] words can't do ANYTHING to you, only their actions.

While I don't hold with the idea that people should be able to go through life without getting offended, it's a very big jump to say that words don't have any effect on people (or that words are not an action?). There is real pain associated with the "n" word for many Americans, and you shouldn't discount that. Do you also believe that depression is not a real illness?
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Re: How do we eliminate/minimize racism/sexism/<group>ism?

Postby GenericPseudonym » Fri Nov 12, 2010 9:48 pm UTC

Here's the problem with this whole idea: you can't force people to change their ideas, and they'll probably pass the same ideas on to their children. The only way you could possibly eliminate group-ism would be completely quarantining children away from the ideas until they were adults, which would be very impractical. One could also possibly institute the death penalty for the first offense of discrimination, which is even less practical, although it would effectively remove the ideas.
Basically, what i'm trying to say is that you can't do this. People (in general, not saying anyone specifically) suck at being nice.
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Re: How do we eliminate/minimize racism/sexism/<group>ism?

Postby zookap » Fri Nov 12, 2010 11:11 pm UTC

distractedSofty wrote:I think that most "groupism" derives from there being an us/them dichotomy in people's minds. We've seen how good our mind is at finding patterns, so the answer is to make that "pattern" as broad as possible. We need people to interact with as many religions/races/sexes(?) as they can in situations where that is not the focus, and then "us" will become everyone with whom you interact.

zookap wrote: Again, someone's [...] words can't do ANYTHING to you, only their actions.

While I don't hold with the idea that people should be able to go through life without getting offended, it's a very big jump to say that words don't have any effect on people (or that words are not an action?). There is real pain associated with the "n" word for many Americans, and you shouldn't discount that. Do you also believe that depression is not a real illness?


Do I believe depression is not a real illness? I believe depression is a condition that people fall into when things go wrong in their lives. With the exception of bi-polar and manic depressions I don't think 'depression' is a chemical disease, no.

Back to the topic at hand: a large part of the 'pain' people feel when they hear something racist is forced, or at least a lot of the 'pain' that makes it into our view, like the stupid news report about the racist Wal Mart incident. I think treating the 'n' word as if it has no power is GOOD thing. Treating it like some incantation that is sure to cause grievous inner pain to black people is just going to increase the negative impact of groupism. It reinforces the us/them dichotomy in people's minds.
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Re: How do we eliminate/minimize racism/sexism/<group>ism?

Postby distractedSofty » Fri Nov 12, 2010 11:40 pm UTC

zookap wrote:Do I believe depression is not a real illness? I believe depression is a condition that people fall into when things go wrong in their lives. With the exception of bi-polar and manic depressions I don't think 'depression' is a chemical disease, no.

I will say no more about this than to point out that this is not a view shared by the medical profession, even if it is depressingly prevalent in society. The reason I brought it up is because you seemed to be implying that peoples minds were not "real".

zookap wrote:Back to the topic at hand: a large part of the 'pain' people feel when they hear something racist is forced, or at least a lot of the 'pain' that makes it into our view, like the stupid news report about the racist Wal Mart incident. I think treating the 'n' word as if it has no power is GOOD thing. Treating it like some incantation that is sure to cause grievous inner pain to black people is just going to increase the negative impact of groupism. It reinforces the us/them dichotomy in people's minds.

In general I agree with you, and have the viewpoint that nothing should be taboo: In the words of Tim Minchin, "If anyone's been offended by anything I've said so far, anything at all... You might want to pop out for about 5 minutes." - that usually describes me talking about anything. On the other hand, I don't believe in intentionally causing people pain(I usually like to stop before "very uncomfortable").

You are correct that the best way to remove the power from a word is to just treat it as though it has no power, the issue with just doing that right now is that it does have power. Not just because it's taboo, but because it evokes some very real imagery from the not too distant past. And, since I don't believe we should hide any of that history from anyone, for the near future at least, we should avoid evoking that imagery flippantly. I don't know of the incident in question, but I see no reason to doubt that the lady was speaking earnestly: were someone to have recited the ode of rembembrance over an intercom yesterday, it would have made me quite sad, and I probably would have cried.(I'm man enough to admit it) If someone had done it as a prank, you bet I would have been angry.
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Re: How do we eliminate/minimize racism/sexism/<group>ism?

Postby nitePhyyre » Sat Nov 13, 2010 5:33 am UTC

Humans form ingroups. This is our nature. Forming tribes where you trusted your tribesmen implicitly, and distrusted everything else is how humans survived. In the end, I think this question basically comes down to: Can we have an 'us' without a 'them'?
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Re: How do we eliminate/minimize racism/sexism/<group>ism?

Postby CorruptUser » Sat Nov 13, 2010 6:08 am UTC

Assuming 'imaginary' is equivalent to 'does not exist', then an imaginary "them" would be able to satisfy the "us" without a "them". So we could create an imaginary foreign threat to unify all of us into peace.

I think that was the major plot of Watchmen, or something. I never read the comic book/graphic novel. Yeah, so sue me.

Anyway, I don't think "them" has to be an enemy, it just merely needs to be a common goal. Whether that common goal is eliminating "them" or finally getting a man on Mars already is up to us.
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Re: How do we eliminate/minimize racism/sexism/<group>ism?

Postby distractedSofty » Sat Nov 13, 2010 6:16 am UTC

CorruptUser wrote:Assuming 'imaginary' is equivalent to 'does not exist', then an imaginary "them" would be able to satisfy the "us" without a "them".

I think that was the major plot of Watchmen, or something. I never read the comic book/graphic novel. Yeah, so sue me.

Spoiler:
Yeah, that's the whole plot; uniting humanity against the giant squid alien(comic book) or Dr Manhattan(movie).


An alternative along the same lines is the method shown in "The Dark Night", in which Batman volunteers to be the bad guy, to unite the city against him. If we had someone willing to be the worlds most hated man/woman, they could just insult everybody. (Unfortunately, my plan does not have the finesse of "the worlds smartest man". Maybe Ozymandias can help us.)
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Re: How do we eliminate/minimize racism/sexism/<group>ism?

Postby traveltheory » Sat Nov 13, 2010 10:22 am UTC

Embracing cultural heritage leads to racism. I think wiping out that would be the best way to do so.
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Re: How do we eliminate/minimize racism/sexism/<group>ism?

Postby nitePhyyre » Sat Nov 13, 2010 2:29 pm UTC

I think it is worth pointing out that Ozzy was essentially the villain in Watchmen. Also, the constant war against an imaginary threat is how people were kept in line in the novel 1984. I don't think that an imaginary 'them' is the correct solution if we can just plain not have a 'them'. What happens when the charade eventually falls apart? I imagine you would have more anger, more problems than racism ever caused. Deception on that scale would also be extremely difficult to pull off.

Something about peace through lies doesn't sit right with me.
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Re: How do we eliminate/minimize racism/sexism/<group>ism?

Postby CorruptUser » Sat Nov 13, 2010 4:10 pm UTC

Well, as I said before, how about a common goal?

Like, getting a man to mars already!
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Re: How do we eliminate/minimize racism/sexism/<group>ism?

Postby zookap » Sat Nov 13, 2010 4:19 pm UTC

traveltheory wrote:Embracing cultural heritage leads to racism. I think wiping out that would be the best way to do so.


I think this is a dangerous way to think about it. There should be no "wiping out" of any cultural heritage nor should there even be any attempt to lessen the differences from one culture to the next. There is nothing harmful about appreciating your own culture or even thinking it is a superior culture, that's all fine. Everyone doesn't need to be the same to keep us safe from groupism (or for any other reason; that's just silly) and if everyone is going to be the same, who gets to choose which cultures get wiped out? I also think some degree of groupism is normal, even wholesome in cases. It's fine for America and Canada to have the whole "the other one sucks ass" thing going on. I think if we just need to ignore groupism for the petty ignorance that it really is but stop people when they go to far and murder someone. Stop them NOT because they are groupist but because they are criminal.

zookap wrote:
CorruptUser wrote:Well, as I said before, how about a common goal?

Like, getting a man to mars already!


I hear that! Space exploration is just about the only thing I'm willing and even eager to support with my taxes. I say we should grant an infinite budget to NASA. Funding should not be a consideration of theirs.


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Re: How do we eliminate/minimize racism/sexism/<group>ism?

Postby nitePhyyre » Sat Nov 13, 2010 10:17 pm UTC

CorruptUser wrote:Well, as I said before, how about a common goal?

Like, getting a man to mars already!

That's no good. All you've done is change the groupism from blacks vs. whites to Earthlings vs. Martians. :lol:
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Re: How do we eliminate/minimize racism/sexism/<group>ism?

Postby Arrian » Sat Nov 13, 2010 10:20 pm UTC

CorruptUser wrote:In this case, the fault of groupism lies with the general public


My point wasn't really about whose "fault" discrimination is, it was more contesting your statement that libertarians considered discrimination self correcting in a competitive market. First, the self correcting part is more about economics not the libertarian philosophy and does not hold in all cases. Second, Libertarian philosophy is more about keeping your government out of my business than economic efficiency.

I think prejudice and discrimination are part of the human condition, you aren't going to get rid of them. The best I think you can hope for is to minimize the damage by enforcing social norms against actively harming people. Over time, a concerted effort by a large enough group of the population can change some attitudes, after all the abuses associated with racism have been significantly reduced in the past 50 years. On the other hand, this isn't process isn't a certainty and the results aren't entirely predictable, just as much effort went in to a similar attempt to convert the nation to teetotalers and that backfired horribly.
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Re: How do we eliminate/minimize racism/sexism/<group>ism?

Postby jestingrabbit » Sun Nov 14, 2010 6:20 am UTC

CorruptUser wrote:Then there is a fourth camp, the Libertarian argument, though it's much smaller than the others (at least from what I see). As racism is irrational no solution is the solution. For example, let's say a restaurant refuses to hire brunette waiters. Blondes will get paid more, because they are in higher demand. But the other restaurants in the area will hire the cheaper brunette waiters and undercut the first restaurant, driving it out of business. For an example of how this works in the real world, the Brooklyn Dodgers began winning many games after getting Jackie Robinson. The extra wins translated to more ticket sales, and soon other baseball teams realized that they had to allow all players on their team, regardless of demographics.


I can think of several things that are wrong with this approach. Just basing my response on the blonde vs brunette situation you illustrated the concept with, it makes no bones about the fact that brunettes are to be paid less than blondes for however long it takes for this groupism to evaporate of its own accord. That is a problem if you are a brunette. Furthermore, if blonde favouring individuals have significantly more economic power than hair-indifferent people, the time till evaporation eventually occurs could be rather huge. From what I can garner from a brief glance at your baseball example, it was significantly longer than half a century that the game was played segregated.

zookap wrote:There should be no "hate crimes" because that sets the precedent that people can be punished differently depending on what groups they belong to, which is BULLSHIT.


That's not what hate crime laws are about. They merely continue the principle that people can be punished differently depending on their thoughts and intentions as revealed by their actions. If I a white man beats a black man with a baseball bat, that is one kind of crime, but depending on the circumstances (a planned ambush vs over heated tempers on a sports ground) it will be punished differently. Likewise, if the perpetrator uses slurs to refer to the black man whilst he's beating them, then there is a different crime that has been committed.

zookap wrote:Again, someone's beliefs or even words can't do ANYTHING to you, only their actions. If someome is assaulted there is a problem, otherwise there isn't. Lately I've seen people going to great lengths to be offended by groupism, specifically by racism. I remember on the news there was a segment about an 'incident' in which someone got on the loudspeaker at Wal Mart and said "all black people need to leave the store." This idiotic prank got national attention and so did the black woman who began to cry and talk about how deeply upsetting that day had been. Was the news coverage really necessary? All it did was show people that racist words can somehow cause great inner pain to black people. All that should have happened is that the people in the store should have found it slightly amusing.


You propose that the hurt that people experience from racism is manufactured and then you go on to propose that the correct response to a racist joke is amusement. An interesting correlation to say the least.

I don't think solving racism is about working out who to blame for what. Nor do I think that government action is the complete solution, though I do consider that it can significantly hasten the reduction of the harm done to individuals by these sorts of memes.

I think the best thing that can be done is to analyse how the culture in general essentializes being a racist, or a sexist or what have you. Being a racist is seen as something that one might be, rather than racist actions being something that one might do. It creates a false dichotomy in peoples minds, racists over there, non racists over here, and never the twain shall meet. If instead we perceive racist actions as something that we are all capable of, and something that we can be forgiven for and move on from, that a simple slight does not imply that we habitually beat people of other races, it becomes more possible to get at the 'small' racist actions that we're all capable of, like laughing at a racist joke.
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Re: How do we eliminate/minimize racism/sexism/<group>ism?

Postby CorruptUser » Sun Nov 14, 2010 6:45 am UTC

jestingrabbit wrote:
zookap wrote:There should be no "hate crimes" because that sets the precedent that people can be punished differently depending on what groups they belong to, which is BULLSHIT.


That's not what hate crime laws are about. They merely continue the principle that people can be punished differently depending on their thoughts and intentions as revealed by their actions. If I a white man beats a black man with a baseball bat, that is one kind of crime, but depending on the circumstances (a planned ambush vs over heated tempers on a sports ground) it will be punished differently. Likewise, if the perpetrator uses slurs to refer to the black man whilst he's beating them, then there is a different crime that has been committed.


Beating up a black man with a baseball bat is already felony assault and battery. There is not a single hate crime (that I know of) that is not already a crime. Premeditation already bumps up a felony. Why should there be a legal difference between assaulting someone because they refused to join your gang and assaulting someone for being in a different legally defined demographic than you?

If the criminal committed a crime with the intent of destruction and/or intimidation (also know as terrorism), then the law allows for maximum sentencing. If there were extenuating circumstances, but still a guilty conviction, then the person may receive leniency as far as the law permits. This is why the law has ranges for the sentences, rather than a specific sentence per crime.
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Re: How do we eliminate/minimize racism/sexism/<group>ism?

Postby jestingrabbit » Sun Nov 14, 2010 7:15 am UTC

CorruptUser wrote:
jestingrabbit wrote:
zookap wrote:There should be no "hate crimes" because that sets the precedent that people can be punished differently depending on what groups they belong to, which is BULLSHIT.


That's not what hate crime laws are about. They merely continue the principle that people can be punished differently depending on their thoughts and intentions as revealed by their actions. If I a white man beats a black man with a baseball bat, that is one kind of crime, but depending on the circumstances (a planned ambush vs over heated tempers on a sports ground) it will be punished differently. Likewise, if the perpetrator uses slurs to refer to the black man whilst he's beating them, then there is a different crime that has been committed.


Beating up a black man with a baseball bat is already felony assault and battery. There is not a single hate crime (that I know of) that is not already a crime. Premeditation already bumps up a felony. Why should there be a legal difference between assaulting someone because they refused to join your gang and assaulting someone for being in a different legally defined demographic than you?


The answer to your question is that there isn't a legal difference between those actions, all things being equal. A straight man can beat up a homosexual man and it not be a hate crime. The prosecution has to prove that part of the motivation for the violence is some prejudice on the part of the offender. The fact that the people involved in the crime are in and out group members doesn't imply that its a hate crime. The difference in crime is about the difference in motive. The principle that motive changes what crime has been committed is entrenched in all western juriprudence that I'm aware of.

Edit: having read your question a second time, there is a difference. Once is a hate crime, the other isn't. Why should society particularly penalise bias-motive crimes? Because society sees bigotry as a problem, and when people use that bigotry as part of their reasons for a crime, they are reinforcing that social ill. When actions are particularly problematic they attract more punishment.
Last edited by jestingrabbit on Sun Nov 14, 2010 7:41 am UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: How do we eliminate/minimize racism/sexism/<group>ism?

Postby CorruptUser » Sun Nov 14, 2010 7:38 am UTC

Yes but as I said before, this is the reason for the wide range of sentencing available. I fail to see what additional benefit having hate-crime legislation does.

Edit: I don't think we are communicating here. The law already allows for harsher punishment of crimes with heinous intentions. The sentencing guidelines for a Class B Felony might range from a minimum of 2 years in prison to a maximum of 15 years, the exact sentence to be determined in each individual case. If the person's intent was a horrible intent, then he could get a harsher sentence than if the person's intent was more benign. I fail to see what the additional benefit is for changing the crime to increase the possible sentence is when the law already allows for harsher sentencing of crimes with malicious intent.
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Re: How do we eliminate/minimize racism/sexism/<group>ism?

Postby jestingrabbit » Sun Nov 14, 2010 7:42 am UTC

CorruptUser wrote:Yes but as I said before, this is the reason for the wide range of sentencing available. I fail to see what additional benefit having hate-crime legislation does.


If its a hate crime the range changes. And the reasons I put in my edit.
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Re: How do we eliminate/minimize racism/sexism/<group>ism?

Postby zookap » Sun Nov 14, 2010 7:55 pm UTC

jestingrabbit wrote:
zookap wrote:There should be no "hate crimes" because that sets the precedent that people can be punished differently depending on what groups they belong to, which is BULLSHIT.


That's not what hate crime laws are about. They merely continue the principle that people can be punished differently depending on their thoughts and intentions as revealed by their actions. If I a white man beats a black man with a baseball bat, that is one kind of crime, but depending on the circumstances (a planned ambush vs over heated tempers on a sports ground) it will be punished differently. Likewise, if the perpetrator uses slurs to refer to the black man whilst he's beating them, then there is a different crime that has been committed.


No man, no different crime has been committed. A man was still beaten up with a baseball bat, who cares why? No matter what the laws are 'about,' the still set that precedent. The negative consequences of most laws, especially such abstract ones, go beyond the scope of what those laws are 'about.'

zookap wrote:Again, someone's beliefs or even words can't do ANYTHING to you, only their actions. If someome is assaulted there is a problem, otherwise there isn't. Lately I've seen people going to great lengths to be offended by groupism, specifically by racism. I remember on the news there was a segment about an 'incident' in which someone got on the loudspeaker at Wal Mart and said "all black people need to leave the store." This idiotic prank got national attention and so did the black woman who began to cry and talk about how deeply upsetting that day had been. Was the news coverage really necessary? All it did was show people that racist words can somehow cause great inner pain to black people. All that should have happened is that the people in the store should have found it slightly amusing.



You propose that the hurt that people experience from racism is manufactured and then you go on to propose that the correct response to a racist joke is amusement. An interesting correlation to say the least.


Yes I do propose that. At least I propose that to a degree. I'm not saying that nobody is ever hurt by racism I'm saying there are incentives to being "hurt" by racism. I think laughing at a racist joke is fine and if the joke goes to far then let the joker know. It's a JOKE, man. If it's in poor taste who cares it still has no sinister motives. In this example there is no reason to feel all this "pain" because all black people didn't really have to leave the store and that was never in question. Why would you let some stupid moron redneck (or was it a 12 year old prankster?) have such an effect??

Why should society particularly penalise bias-motive crimes? Because society sees bigotry as a problem, and when people use that bigotry as part of their reasons for a crime, they are reinforcing that social ill. When actions are particularly problematic they attract more punishment.


Society should NOT penalize particularly bias-motive crimes because they actions of the criminals are still the same. Motive doesn't matter and saying that it does is a step towards thought police (the kind of step America needs to stop taking, FAST). While the intention of such a law might not be a step toward thought police, that's what it still is. Besides, laws like that only reinforce the us vs them dichotomy. You say that particularly problematic actions attract more punishment, and I agree. But a murder and a hate inspired murder are the same action to me.
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Re: How do we eliminate/minimize racism/sexism/<group>ism?

Postby GoC » Sun Nov 14, 2010 9:48 pm UTC

zookap wrote:
Why should society particularly penalise bias-motive crimes? Because society sees bigotry as a problem, and when people use that bigotry as part of their reasons for a crime, they are reinforcing that social ill. When actions are particularly problematic they attract more punishment.


Society should NOT penalize particularly bias-motive crimes because they actions of the criminals are still the same. Motive doesn't matter and saying that it does is a step towards thought police (the kind of step America needs to stop taking, FAST). While the intention of such a law might not be a step toward thought police, that's what it still is. Besides, laws like that only reinforce the us vs them dichotomy. You say that particularly problematic actions attract more punishment, and I agree. But a murder and a hate inspired murder are the same action to me.

Motive does matter in determining how likely the person convicted is to reoffend (and thus what kind of sentence they should get).
Note: I'm in all four camps with a large leaning towards 1 and 4.
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Re: How do we eliminate/minimize racism/sexism/<group>ism?

Postby jestingrabbit » Mon Nov 15, 2010 5:45 am UTC

zookap wrote:
jestingrabbit wrote:That's not what hate crime laws are about. They merely continue the principle that people can be punished differently depending on their thoughts and intentions as revealed by their actions. If I a white man beats a black man with a baseball bat, that is one kind of crime, but depending on the circumstances (a planned ambush vs over heated tempers on a sports ground) it will be punished differently. Likewise, if the perpetrator uses slurs to refer to the black man whilst he's beating them, then there is a different crime that has been committed.


No man, no different crime has been committed. A man was still beaten up with a baseball bat, who cares why? No matter what the laws are 'about,' the still set that precedent. The negative consequences of most laws, especially such abstract ones, go beyond the scope of what those laws are 'about.'


I admit that my language was imprecise, using 'about' like that. To make it clear, the letter of the law states that to be convicted of a hate crime, the prosecution must prove that some of the motivation was some bigotry or other.

You seem to be taking a great deal of exception to the idea that motive can change which crime has been committed. I recommend that you read up on mens rea. Briefly, in common law, the idea is that to be convicted of a crime there must be some mental component, and often that component is motive. This has been the case for centuries, so repeatedly saying "who cares about the motive" isn't going to convince me that the existence of hate crimes sets some precedent that thought crimes are just now being put on the books. Thoughts have been a significant component of crime for some time. The phrase thought crime was invented to describe crimes that have no action component, and no one in this thread is proposing that thought alone should be a criminal offense.

Society is right to put hate crimes in a special category because there will always be people who are different to oneself, so the motive for further offenses will always be present. That's quite different from more situational motivations that can exist.

zookap wrote:
jestingrabbit wrote:You propose that the hurt that people experience from racism is manufactured and then you go on to propose that the correct response to a racist joke is amusement. An interesting correlation to say the least.


Yes I do propose that. At least I propose that to a degree. I'm not saying that nobody is ever hurt by racism I'm saying there are incentives to being "hurt" by racism. I think laughing at a racist joke is fine and if the joke goes to far then let the joker know. It's a JOKE, man. If it's in poor taste who cares it still has no sinister motives. In this example there is no reason to feel all this "pain" because all black people didn't really have to leave the store and that was never in question. Why would you let some stupid moron redneck (or was it a 12 year old prankster?) have such an effect??


There are incentives to being physically injured too. Do we therefore accuse every person injured in an accident of malingering? Anyway, in the case that you cite, what is the specific incentive that you are proposing is involved? That people might give some attention to people hurt by racism, rather than just laughing off racist incidents? Are the black people in the store also supposed to see the humour in this reference to jim crow era discrimination? That era is very much in living memory. To act as though its a fit subject for humour is callous. Frankly, if you hadn't described it as a joke I certainly would not have taken it as such. You claim that there is no sinister motive, but beyond ridiculing and/or intimidating black people, I can't see any motive for this at all.
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Re: How do we eliminate/minimize racism/sexism/<group>ism?

Postby deerie » Mon Nov 15, 2010 6:25 am UTC

zookap wrote:No man, no different crime has been committed. A man was still beaten up with a baseball bat, who cares why? No matter what the laws are 'about,' the still set that precedent. The negative consequences of most laws, especially such abstract ones, go beyond the scope of what those laws are 'about.'


But it is a different crime. Instead of beating someone up because of something s/he did (not that s/he deserved it) or because you wanted to beat a radon person up, you're beating someone up because of an intrinsic part of their nature, something unchangeable. Treating hate-based crime the same as any other crime says, in effect, that there is nothing wrong with hate-based crimes, and therefore with discrimination. The different penalties represent the fact that discrimination is not acceptable; it is another crime on top of the beating.

zookap wrote:
jestingrabbit wrote:You propose that the hurt that people experience from racism is manufactured and then you go on to propose that the correct response to a racist joke is amusement. An interesting correlation to say the least.

Yes I do propose that. At least I propose that to a degree. I'm not saying that nobody is ever hurt by racism I'm saying there are incentives to being "hurt" by racism. I think laughing at a racist joke is fine and if the joke goes to far then let the joker know. It's a JOKE, man. If it's in poor taste who cares it still has no sinister motives. In this example there is no reason to feel all this "pain" because all black people didn't really have to leave the store and that was never in question. Why would you let some stupid moron redneck (or was it a 12 year old prankster?) have such an effect??

Bolding mine.
(As in, I believe jestingrabbit was pointing out that you seem pretty discriminatory yourself, and also unwilling to acknowledge that discrimination is a bad thing. And then you went and responded with another discriminatory statement. Really, don't make this harder for yourself than it needs to be.)
It's pretty offensive to blame the people who are affected by discrimination for suffering from its effects.
It's not a joke, unless you think racism is somehow funny?
Lol, so it doesn't matter because it wasn't someone actually making them leave the store? As mentioned above, having someone attack you for something you cannot change is not acceptable and is bound to hurt people.

Edit: Sorry, had previous relevant bits in spoilers, but the quote-attributing got messed up at some point and it was gonna take forever to work out. Also grammar.
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Re: How do we eliminate/minimize racism/sexism/<group>ism?

Postby zookap » Mon Nov 15, 2010 7:24 pm UTC

deerie wrote:
zookap wrote:No man, no different crime has been committed. A man was still beaten up with a baseball bat, who cares why? No matter what the laws are 'about,' the still set that precedent. The negative consequences of most laws, especially such abstract ones, go beyond the scope of what those laws are 'about.'


But it is a different crime. Instead of beating someone up because of something s/he did (not that s/he deserved it) or because you wanted to beat a radon person up, you're beating someone up because of an intrinsic part of their nature, something unchangeable. Treating hate-based crime the same as any other crime says, in effect, that there is nothing wrong with hate-based crimes, and therefore with discrimination. The different penalties represent the fact that discrimination is not acceptable; it is another crime on top of the beating.

zookap wrote:
jestingrabbit wrote:You propose that the hurt that people experience from racism is manufactured and then you go on to propose that the correct response to a racist joke is amusement. An interesting correlation to say the least.

Yes I do propose that. At least I propose that to a degree. I'm not saying that nobody is ever hurt by racism I'm saying there are incentives to being "hurt" by racism. I think laughing at a racist joke is fine and if the joke goes to far then let the joker know. It's a JOKE, man. If it's in poor taste who cares it still has no sinister motives. In this example there is no reason to feel all this "pain" because all black people didn't really have to leave the store and that was never in question. Why would you let some stupid moron redneck (or was it a 12 year old prankster?) have such an effect??

Bolding mine.
(As in, I believe jestingrabbit was pointing out that you seem pretty discriminatory yourself, and also unwilling to acknowledge that discrimination is a bad thing. And then you went and responded with another discriminatory statement. Really, don't make this harder for yourself than it needs to be.)
It's pretty offensive to blame the people who are affected by discrimination for suffering from its effects.
It's not a joke, unless you think racism is somehow funny?
Lol, so it doesn't matter because it wasn't someone actually making them leave the store? As mentioned above, having someone attack you for something you cannot change is not acceptable and is bound to hurt people.

Edit: Sorry, had previous relevant bits in spoilers, but the quote-attributing got messed up at some point and it was gonna take forever to work out. Also grammar.


SIGH..... OK before we continue, I do not think that there is any inherent superiority or inferiority of any race to any other race. Please tell me what I said that you found to be discriminatory so I can clear it up and not be unfairly hated for the rest of this conversation.
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Re: How do we eliminate/minimize racism/sexism/<group>ism?

Postby GoC » Tue Nov 16, 2010 12:27 am UTC

[quote="CorruptUser"Edit: I don't think we are communicating here. The law already allows for harsher punishment of crimes with heinous intentions. The sentencing guidelines for a Class B Felony might range from a minimum of 2 years in prison to a maximum of 15 years, the exact sentence to be determined in each individual case. If the person's intent was a horrible intent, then he could get a harsher sentence than if the person's intent was more benign. I fail to see what the additional benefit is for changing the crime to increase the possible sentence is when the law already allows for harsher sentencing of crimes with malicious intent.[/quote]
Anyone going to answer this?
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Re: How do we eliminate/minimize racism/sexism/<group>ism?

Postby jestingrabbit » Tue Nov 16, 2010 1:06 am UTC

GoC wrote:
CorruptUser wrote:Edit: I don't think we are communicating here. The law already allows for harsher punishment of crimes with heinous intentions. The sentencing guidelines for a Class B Felony might range from a minimum of 2 years in prison to a maximum of 15 years, the exact sentence to be determined in each individual case. If the person's intent was a horrible intent, then he could get a harsher sentence than if the person's intent was more benign. I fail to see what the additional benefit is for changing the crime to increase the possible sentence is when the law already allows for harsher sentencing of crimes with malicious intent.

Anyone going to answer this?


Sure. Firstly, referring to specific legislation when we probably all live in different ones would be a little bit specious. Regardless, there's nothing stopping a member of the judiciary from being a bigot. In the case of a hate crime this could easily result in a lesser sentence than is warranted by the facts of the case. By changing the possible sentences and taking some of judicial discretion away, the system guards against this possibility.
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Re: How do we eliminate/minimize racism/sexism/<group>ism?

Postby CorruptUser » Tue Nov 16, 2010 3:36 am UTC

jestingrabbit wrote:Sure. Firstly, referring to specific legislation when we probably all live in different ones would be a little bit specious. Regardless, there's nothing stopping a member of the judiciary from being a bigot. In the case of a hate crime this could easily result in a lesser sentence than is warranted by the facts of the case. By changing the possible sentences and taking some of judicial discretion away, the system guards against this possibility.


There is very much something stopping the Judge from being a racist; the media. It's the job, among other things, of the media to expose anything and everything rotten in government. Bigoted judges are no exception. Oh, and after that article exposed him, he resigned.

Besides, the law doesn't allow for judges to do this, yet it still happens, and only ends when they are exposed.

Considering that the horrible excuses for Judges have been stripped of their position, I'd say the system works. The gears of justice grind slowly, but they grind.

Finally, if the purpose of hate crime laws is to force racist judges to give harsh sentences, why does the hate crime have higher potential sentences than the standard crime, rather than just higher minimum sentences? If the maximum sentence is supposed to be given for the most heinous of crimes of a specific class, the hate crime should have the same maximum cap.
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Re: How do we eliminate/minimize racism/sexism/<group>ism?

Postby jestingrabbit » Tue Nov 16, 2010 1:22 pm UTC

CorruptUser wrote:
jestingrabbit wrote:Sure. Firstly, referring to specific legislation when we probably all live in different ones would be a little bit specious. Regardless, there's nothing stopping a member of the judiciary from being a bigot. In the case of a hate crime this could easily result in a lesser sentence than is warranted by the facts of the case. By changing the possible sentences and taking some of judicial discretion away, the system guards against this possibility.


There is very much something stopping the Judge from being a racist; the media. It's the job, among other things, of the media to expose anything and everything rotten in government. Bigoted judges are no exception. Oh, and after that article exposed him, he resigned.

Besides, the law doesn't allow for judges to do this, yet it still happens, and only ends when they are exposed.

Considering that the horrible excuses for Judges have been stripped of their position, I'd say the system works. The gears of justice grind slowly, but they grind.


Given that neither of those examples are about a long term statistical trend being analysed by the media, which is the sort of thing that would reveal bigotry in sentencing, you'll forgive me if I doubt that the media would be a sufficient check on such a thing.

CorruptUser wrote:Finally, if the purpose of hate crime laws is to force racist judges to give harsh sentences, why does the hate crime have higher potential sentences than the standard crime, rather than just higher minimum sentences? If the maximum sentence is supposed to be given for the most heinous of crimes of a specific class, the hate crime should have the same maximum cap.


That's more an argument for a particular kind of hate crime legislation, rather than an argument against it. Given that we all probably live in different jurisdictions, I don't know how fruitful a discussion about which kind of legislation would be best can be, especially when you continue to tell us precisely what hate crime legislation does, when it may do no such thing where the reader is living.

Regardless, I would say that a hate crime can be an intimidation of a community, and as such is more serious than a 'vanilla' version of the same crime with the same set of aggravating factors (excluding the bias motive). Note that in some jurisdictions, separate crimes are created, which would entirely obviate this objection. Despite what you said in an earlier post, I doubt that such a thing would would fall under anti terrorist legislation here, or many other places.
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Re: How do we eliminate/minimize racism/sexism/<group>ism?

Postby Me321 » Wed Nov 17, 2010 2:14 am UTC

Just stop labeling people, example: we are all Americans, not X Americans, or Y Americans, just Americans, or even we are all just humans, if people see race like hair color than it will matter as much.
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Re: How do we eliminate/minimize racism/sexism/<group>ism?

Postby CorruptUser » Wed Nov 17, 2010 4:54 am UTC

Me321 wrote:Just stop labeling people, example: we are all Americans, not X Americans, or Y Americans, just Americans, or even we are all just humans, if people see race like hair color than it will matter as much.


Except in Britain, where they bully redheads.

You will still have the cases where some people prefer blonds over brunettes, or some other nonsense.
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Re: How do we eliminate/minimize racism/sexism/<group>ism?

Postby iroZn » Wed Nov 17, 2010 5:59 am UTC

CorruptUser wrote:Except in Britain, where they bully redheads.

You will still have the cases where some people prefer blonds over brunettes, or some other nonsense.



Australia the bullying of red heads is so bad I think that something needs to be done about it. Red heads can't go anywhere without people yelling out 'wranger' at them. They say they don't mind though.
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