MEMETICS: The Triumph of Reason

Lyle Burkhead (
Wed, 22 Jan 1997 03:36:03 -0500 (EST)

Eliezer writes,

> And as for my fine proclamations about truth - and that's a small 't',
> Lyle! -

Well... <g> check out what you wrote on January 7:

> I want the Final Answers.

Capital F, capital A...

> The burning search for that takes precedence over everything else.
> What can I do without the Truth? How can I know
> what I'm doing or why I should be doing it without the Truth?
> Doubting isn't just a hobby or even just a way of life.
> It is an action taken with a specific and most final goal in mind:
> To Know everything that matters.

capital K, capital T: FAKT.

Now, getting back to the matter at hand:

> I visited Hugo de Garis's page. I did not see a list of scientific
> studies supporting his assertion. I saw an emotional argument
> for male supremacy, based on self-righteousness.

That may be what you saw, but that's not what is on the page.
It's true that he doesn't give a list of scientific studies; I don't think
your reaction would have been any different if he had. The facts
on this issue are readily available, and you could have looked them up
yourself before commenting on this thread.

What fascinates me about this is that I wrote exactly the same thing
when I was your age. I was anti-racist and anti-sexist; I was every bit
as strident, every bit as self-righteous, as you. This behaviour has
puzzled me ever since.

It isn't a matter of indoctrination. When I was a teenager, there was
no such thing as political correctness. I don't think the word "sexism"
had been invented yet. The feminist movement was dormant in the
1950s and early 60s. Racism wasn't an issue; racism was taken for
granted. But I was PC anyway. It was people like me who invented
political correctness. Like Hugo de Garis, I was a male feminist.
I was also a white anti-racist. De Garis doesn't discuss this point,
but we grew up in similar circumstances at about the same time, and
if I read between the lines correctly, this applies to him too.

When I was in the 8th or 9th grade -- age 13 or 14 -- I was given the
assignment in English class, to write a short story. I wrote a story
in which my dad was a newspaper editor who wrote editorials in favor
of integration. The leader of the Ku Klux Klan was hiding in the
bushes in front of our house, with a beaker of sulfuric acid, which
he was going to throw into my dad's face. Our dog flushed him out,
and saved the day.

There was *nothing* in my background that would have given rise
to this story. My dad was a corporation lawyer, a conservative
Republican, too chickenshit to join the Klan, but definitely racist.
I lived in an all-white neighborhood, and had never known any black
people, except the maid who came over once a week to help my mother
clean up the house. Where did that story come from? To this day,
I still don't know.

But I want to know. I want to Know. I want to trace this phenomenon
back to its roots. Why are we driven to destroy ourselves?

De Garis has made the transition from being a guilty male feminist
to being a proud white male, but he doesn't seem to have a clue about
why any of this happens.

As I read over your post, Eliezer, I see one thing: you feel threatened.
Your self-concept is at stake. The issue, to you, is not whether
there ever has been or ever could be a female Goedel or a female Bach;
the only issue is whether you or de Garis is the better man. Why?