My expectations are modest and he has exceeded them already. I’ll give you one. It will probably ring hollow to you but it is one of my values.
I want to see a President that that is officially supportive of … how can I put it… Ah. I’ll use proper terminology.
I want a President who is cognizant of unmarked categories and works to reconcile this by properly marking the unmarked categories if needed and elevating already marked categories to bring them towards the status of the unmarked categories.
The reason this matters to me is I believe in the “diversity is strength” spirit. I believe people in power are duty-bound to use their power to lift the less powerful when possible.
These are DOMESTIC policy decisions and my main priority for any President is: What is their Domestic policies? This is one I wanted to see and so far I’m seeing it more than I’d expected. I expect far far far less.
The idea of unmarked categories originated in feminism. The theory analyzes the culture of the powerful. The powerful comprise those people in society with easy access to resources, those who can exercise power without considering their actions. For the powerful, their culture seems obvious; for the powerless, on the other hand, it remains out of reach, élite and expensive.
The unmarked category can form the identifying mark of the powerful. The unmarked category becomes the standard against which to measure everything else. For most Western readers, it is posited that if a protagonist’s race is not indicated, it will be assumed by the reader that the protagonist is Caucasian; if a sexual identity is not indicated, it will be assumed by the reader that the protagonist is heterosexual; if the gender of a body is not indicated, will be assumed by the reader that it is male; if a disability is not indicated, it will be assumed by the reader that the protagonist is able bodied, just as a set of examples.
One can often overlook unmarked categories. Whiteness forms an unmarked category not commonly visible to the powerful, as they often fall within this category. The unmarked category becomes the norm, with the other categories relegated to deviant status. Social groups can apply this view of power to race, gender, and disability without modification: the able body is the neutral body.
I bring this up to explain that I don’t put much stock in any individual leader, what they ate for breakfast or did 30 years ago except as gossip (which is fun in itself and yes it’s fun to psychoanalyze powerful people so I do that too and it can help with understanding them if one wishes).
Rather, I ask if I am happy with what having such a leader says about us.
Is the leader _while in that role_ accentuating things I want to see in society?
What do they reflect? How are they mirrors of us?
Trump was a mirror that shined back on America.
Biden is a mirror that shines back on America.
“Make America White Priveleged Again previously as versus ‘Look, we have gays and women ruining things just as well as white men have’.”
No, you got it precisely right. I told you my expectations aren’t very high for Federal level changes to the USA AND “IF THEY SUCCEED” in lasting power, yes, I’ll be impressed.
I expect that everything Biden is trying to do in that department will get met with a hurricane level force from the other side in order to maintain status quo and enact laws to ensure they keep it as forever as possible.
Granted, status quo has expanded slightly. Now white gay man of a certain class are ok. Now white women with the “right attitude” are ok.
It seems to easy. So minor. So simple. “Oh he’s just elevating groups, big deal”.
But watch the forces that work to undo it. Watch the Youtube pundits saying how awful SJWs are, from the center left all the way to the far right.
Watch pundits complain about the downfall of western civilization because of a small changed thing.
Watch whole political careers be launched to combat a “them” from getting in.
No, if all he succeeds in doing successfully is elevating non-default to permanent capabilities of maintaining and keeping ruination-level powers in US government?
Yeah, I’ll take that as a positive. Why should people that look like me be the assholes all the time? Give someone else a genuine lasting chance at that too.
Something more than “Oh one of yours were President once. Aren’t you satisfied now?” But something where people who look and sound like me have to actually be on equal terms.
It does alleviate suffering and curtail criminality. I’ve done it in small experiments and I believe it can work on larger scales.
I’ve run various online groups through the decades, from a few thousands to tens of thousands. Nothing bigger than two or three Roselle Park’s worth of population.
Some were discussion groups, BBS’
and one was a Minecraft server for 2 years. I followed the same pattern, back in 1991 and in 2012: Find people who are noisy troublemakers who are trying to buck the status quo and give them positions of power. Moderators, administrators, etc.
It almost always resulted in a net positive. They aren’t complaining for nothing. Why were they trying to break away to form a subgroup to attack the main group? Because they had issues not being resolved. Give them power and authority. If they’ve never had it before – it generally worked on in my little experiements.
Maybe it doesn’t work in real life. I don’t know.
You have to weed out people with genuine unsolvable broken personalities of course.
But if someone was hacking on the Minecraft server, starting trouble, stirring up hornets nests for no particularly obvious reason?
Here. Have power. You’re in charge.
And don’t micromanage them.
[keep half an eye but not micromanage].
“The person isn’t changed, what was underneath all along in that person gets exposed.”
Precisely. Now, can they be responsible with power? That’s my only question that I try to answer.
Chipping away at a power structure is different from being in power.
Despite all the rhetoric we’ve been taught, there’s no “power of the people”. The power’s in the hands of the powerful almost all of the time.
So, know the structure. Know who holds what power and how they wield it. Know your place within it. Work within it to achieve your goals.
So what’s your goals? Mine has been to elevate those that I can elevate in the ways that I can.
14 years old, I was made Senior Patrol Leader in a dying Boy Scout Troop. I had a dozen 10.5-12 year olds under me suddenly and a set of scout masters that would just disappear during camping trips or meetings.
So I had to figure out something and I’ve followed that basic pattern.
Reason I think delegation is important is I don’t want to do everything.
Reason I think delegating power to as diverse a people as possible, particularly people who spark controversy, is that their energy can be used productively — and they wouldn’t complain if they didn’t care.
[weed out bad personality types of course]
I’m not saying these examples as an attempt to appear an authority: I’m certainly not. My little world is small and my brushes with oversight over others ridiculous in the grand scheme.
But it’s what I know so I share it.
I have very strict rules with myself when it comes to power and authority.
I hold a light touch most of the time. I don’t want to be in power but sometimes there’s nobody else around and something needs doing.
I pass on the power to others when appropriate.
1990-2003-ish – ran a big LISTSERV (mailing list), started at 18. Made it, ran it, delegated responsibility, kicked out people and did what was needed. But when it was around – around 1994-5, I passed it on to two people with VERY different qualities and they ran it ’til 2003 when the server hosting it caught fire. But I’d left it by 1996 and they ran it themselves.
Another LISTSERV list – this was when I was thinking of becoming a Minster, I opened it up for “ministers of any religion and thought leaders that are atheist/agnostic too”, so I guess spiritual/philosophical communities, both real life or online.
I wanted to find out what they all had in common.
It grew to about 4000 people. Ran it from 1993-about 1996 and had a number of helpers, most who worked out, a few were duds.
Passed it on in 1996 to a woman who ran an Earth religion group in Alaska and a Baptist minister in Tennessee, diverse in their messages but both had a “duty of care” over other humans.
and that: that is what it comes down do.
Duty of care. A leader without some duty of care is not a good leader.
I don’t expect a perfect leader or anything close.
OH and the Minecraft server? I set it up, ran it and delegated from 2012-2013, solid year. That was my most fun delegating responsibility.
In 2013-2014 I gave almost COMPLETE control over to a single person.
I became just “the plumber” at that point, running the programs on my laptop, doing maintaining and I stayed as an advisor.
But the person I gave it to was in charge. Very difficult too as they ran things much differently than I did. Some people were asking for me to come back, other people liked their leadership style.
I just became a dead ghost at that point, barely around. It was an interesting experiment because if I showed up, I would take away all authority from the one I gave it too even if I told them “no no, I’m not in charge any more”.
I had to disappear for it work. It was interesting.