The Journal of Applied Impossibility
I began this on February 21st-ish, 2021. But I always keep my hot takes on a back burner until they're no longer relevant, so I'm sure that if this post ever meets the light of day, the story will be very old news.
In response to this and this and this, a friend sent me this.
I think I find Wilkinson's blog post irksome -- and I'm trying to work through (1.) why that is,
(2.) whether it matter that it's irksome, and
(3.) what about my thinking is or ought to be different for my having read it.
I have to admit that I find myself among the partisans here, and it's very difficult to know whether I am "objective" -- and if (as I suspect) I am not, it's also very difficult to know how to correct this. I have already noted my suspicion that "objectivity" is overrated. But there's a difference between
NOTE: this was originally written for my personal site on May 18, 2018. I then deleted it, and thought about re-publishing. This should give you an idea of how long it takes me to get over my discomfort with sharing my thoughts.
The titular phrase is a part of our workaday lexicon, and I confess that it has always struck me as odd. It is odd because it seems to mean one thing to most people, but whenever I hear it, it sounds like it should mean just the opposite. This strikes me as a microcosm of the collapse of intelligent conversation in the world today. I will also suggest an alternative to this understanding that may be the last great hope for preserving such discourse.
One of my problems with the current fad of “specifying one’s pronouns” is that it simply does not use language correctly. Phrases such as “my pronouns” or “I use XYZ pronouns” don’t mean what folks seem to think those phrases mean. First, pronouns are part of a language, and as such, do not belong to you or anyone else. They are not like a name. This is part of
I write about all sorts of things. This is one of the places where I do it.