“I’ll geolocate your ass!”

23 Oct

Conversation moves to the extremes because it gets the most attention; it’s the most interesting. After all, who wants to listen to a reasoned debate on water storage when “You’re killing the delta smelt!” But it has a secondary effect: people hide their true feelings in the face of extremism.

I was going to write a post about trolls, after I heard a radio guy say, “I’m gonna geolocate your ass!” jokingly, but upon reflection, trolls dominate the conversation in many situations. Or at least, we don’t call them trolls when we agree with them.

BTW, this is what a Delta Smelt looks like. It’s an endangered Californian fish.

Take something banal – “Next Generation is the best Star Trek of them all!” I’m actually a huge fan of Deep Space Nine. I also know I am in the minority. Most Trekkers hated that show and I know why. For most of them, Star Trek is gleaming spaceships, boldly going, and science solves all problems. For me, DS9 rings more honest to me. Everything gleaming falls apart eventually, people DON’T get along, and you can’t just technobabble your way out of this one (although, let’s be honest, they still do). Because they were in the same place, they had the best recurring villains, and the more interesting plots.

I might say that in a small group of Star Trek fans, or even a small group in a friendly conversation, but I’m not going to get on social media or in front of a group of Trekkers and say that. Why? Because I don’t like conflict. With my ADHD, I feel emotions more. I think this makes me a better listener, but it also means that strong emotions bother me, so I try to avoid them. So if you profess a strong stance on something, most likely, I’m going to stay silent, even if I completely disagree with you.

What’s scarier to me is not the “silent majority,” but rather the “wannabes.” The people who disagree with someone’s strong opinion, but pretend to agree with them because they really don’t want the argument. They figure the best way to avoid it is to agree with them. It’s effective, but it gives the trolls power. More importantly, it gives the false illusion that everyone thinks the same as you. We create the bubbles we live in.

And the trolls want us in those bubbles. There’s a debate theory called the “motte and bailey,” which are the two parts of a castle – the strong fort inside and the walls on the outside. You start out with an easily defendable premise and then expand on it. If someone questions you on the expanded premise, you retreat to the easier point. For example:

A: “I believe that every child has the right to education. So we should instill mandatory attendance for all children in public schools. That means raising property taxes to have the best schools, and of course, to keep them safe, we need to have mandatory vaccination…”

B: “Hang on, parents have the right…”

A: “What! You don’t believe children have the right to education?!”

This is why I’m seeing people being more willing to be vocal. Because you can only be stomped down with debates so long before you crack. You will either then become the “wannabes,” or you’ll embrace the blatant “wrong.” It’s never been a better time to be a racist because when the trolls put the “racist” label on everything not theirs, you start to think, “#*($ it! I am a racist. Deal with it, brown boy!”

Is that better? No, but inevitable. But I could be wrong. What do you think? Are the trolls winning? Are we becoming more troll-like? Or will the silent majority surprise us all? Let me know in the comments below!

7 Responses to ““I’ll geolocate your ass!””

  1. seankfletcher October 24, 2020 at 5:41 pm #

    Sometimes, it’s great to be in the minority. We know what we are talking about 🤣 Firstly, DS9 is my favourite Trek. I still have the science magazine (Omni) that the initial premise for DS9 appeared in – DS9 was considered by the scientific writing staff at the time to be more realistic in terms of what life would be like living on such a station. It’s the same with me wth Discovery (plenty of hate around this one – but I think it is a good show and full on entertainment) and Picard.

    In my view, the trolls are not winning. The silent majority will surprise us. The issue is to do more with perception – it may seem that they are winning, but there are a billion and one other people who say otherwise, especially in the last six months. There are some fantastic bloggers (yourself included) who choose to address this issue and many many readers enjoy reading a balanced and well meaning view.

    The day I become more troll like is the day I lead the revolution to put the trolls back under the bridge and let the goats run free. Some people would like that. But, I have had my day in the sun. So, I am just trying to continue being constructive, catching up with things I have ignored for far too long and working out if I make sense (or, if I ever did?).

    • albigensia October 25, 2020 at 5:55 am #

      Thank you, Sean. This is a great compliment.

    • Silk Cords October 26, 2020 at 6:26 pm #

      Completely agree with Sean, other than after my time in California, I’m a bit more inclined to fire back at the trolls.

      And yes, I loved DS9 also. Strong cast, great stories… I admit, I was highly skeptical there at first and thought it would get stale fast. I was wrong. 🙂

  2. joliesattic October 25, 2020 at 5:36 am #

    I agree. My nephew posted a picture on his Instagram page of protesters with bullhorns downtown (he lives downtown) where they’ve now closed down the streets, because of all the racket. I told him it never made sense. In some cases, I imagine it may defeat their purpose, because some folks may be inclined to go in the opposite direction just because of their obnoxiousness.

  3. spwilcen October 25, 2020 at 7:43 am #

    Not caught-up enough to know where you are, but I like what I’m seeing. Cynicism. Who doesn’t like cynicism? I mean who among those who can THINK don’t understand cynicism? Personally, I think I’m going to bait-and-switch all my blogs from this point out. Sex. That sells. A plan is afoot… Good post.

  4. animation the world of music November 10, 2020 at 4:32 pm #

    hello

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