Well Off the Target With That One

Missing the TargetI made an attempt to create a moment for analogous thinking without clarifying my purpose, which would have defeated the experiment. In doing so, not only did I put a target on my chest, but caused pain for husband, without thinking it through. Admittedly, it was a spur of the moment decision, triggered by emotions rather than critical thinking on my part.

As Facebook is pervasive with humorous posts, people sharing events, and much other non-disarming sharing, it is my goal to at times share something to make people sit up and take notice. It happens at times that when we recount to people an incident that is prominent in the news, they have no idea what we are talking about. In addition to some things that tickle my funny bone, I also try to post links to new articles to raise awareness. Some may ignore certain articles or not have access, which is hard to believe with the Internet.

To clarify “Many, perhaps most, speakers and writers use analogies merely as a communication tool. An analogy allows a speaker to clarify a new idea by invoking some similarity it has to some idea with which we are already familiar. Sometimes, however, people offer analogies in attempts to change minds. In such a case, the analogy is offered not just to explain, but also to persuade. It is thus then an argument by analogy…

…The basic motor of any analogy argument is a comparison, a claim that one thing is like another thing.” In light of this, due to the ubiquitous news stories about transgender bathroom usage, the discrimination laws passed in North Carolina and Mississippi, with Tennessee wanting to follow after having the bible names as the official State Book, I took a giant step in trying to create a critical thinking test.

Using a picture posted on Facebook showing a priest with the words something like “I am the one you need to watch out for”, the intention was to create an analogy. Though as I said, I did not include my thoughts below the picture purposefully. Before going further, I have to share that I had many fine and healthy interactions with priests growing up. I am forever grateful to Fathers Daly, Herbst, and Schabel for their gentle nature and overwhelming nurturing nature to all people without conditions. There are others who I wish would burn in hell if I believed such existed.

Therefore, in my obrain-vs-heartpinion it is as ludicrous to claim that all clergy, whether Catholic or otherwise are child molesters. It is just as, if not more ludicrous, to assert that transgender people are threats in public restrooms. Both notions may not seem connected, but they are by way of distorted, puritanical sexual notions that are evoked by emotion, not logic. My error was in thinking I could bring this to light as a thinking moment. It was a wake-up call regarding prejudicial and emotionally based overly generalized belief systems.

Having been a childhood victim of numerous incidents of bullying, verbally and physically based on others’ perceptions of what I am or why I did not fit into the society standard, I am ultra-sensitive to these situations. As an adult, I have experienced many instances of discrimination both legal and non-legal. There were times when I have been denied jobs and have had vicious, completely untrue rumors spread about me in an attempt to discredit my character and at times forcing me out of a job where I have otherwise received rave reviews.

Perhaps I mistakenly used ‘faulty analogy’ where there is an assumption that because two things are alike in one or more respects, they are necessarily alike in some other respect by equating child molesters with transgendered people in restrooms. However, it may be others who are using faulty analogy believing transgender people are a threat.

Regardless, for those who angered by the Facebook posting for religious reasons, I would really love and appreciate seeing your future posts defending the rights of gay and transgendered people.Chances are extremely high that you know or love a gay or transgendered person and may not even be aware of it.

If you believe in Jesus, Johnhe said (John 13:34-35).

Otherwise, silence gives consent!

“When dealing with people, remember you are not dealing with creatures of logic, but with creatures of emotion, creatures bristling with prejudice and motivated by pride and vanity.” —Dale Carnegie

After completing my Ed.D., the frustration of finding a teaching position where I was willing to live, led to Ron and I leaving the country. We intended to travel for a year before settling somewhere in MA or RI.

We left the US without any credit card debt, no car payments and our house mortgage paid by renters. We had $10,000 in the bank to make our way through a year.

2 Comments

  1. Though I tend to “lurk” in the background for numerous and many private reasons (I do read much more than I comment), I felt compelled to offer my appreciation for this follow up to your previous post. Very few people today are willing to acknowledge when they miss the “target” in any form of communication, particularly social media. Even fewer people are willing to take the time to explain their thinking.

    I did understand the unfortunate stereotype behind the attempted analogy in your Facebook post. Your use of it didn’t anger me; it saddened me. In today’s world, regrettably, the face of the “one you need to watch out for” takes too many forms. And many people today, as you point out, subscribe to “prejudicial and emotionally based overly generalized belief systems” that reinforce, without logical or actual personal experience, negative stereotypes, to the exclusion of all members of any group.

    I have recently pushed myself to become more openly inclusive in my life experiences. Newly reinvigorated academic pursuits have challenged me to take a hard look my implicit attitudes and stereotypes, leading to a distasteful admission that I have lived a relatively privileged life. I’ve since learned that my discomfort in any given situation or with any particularly person can be a reflection of that experience. But, and perhaps ironically, analogies helped expand my understanding and acceptance that there are greater numbers of similarities between all humans than differences.

    • Dear Patrick,
      I truly appreciate the thoughtful feedback. Thank you for taking the time to write.

      Ryan

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