Jump to content

Welcome to the Freedomain Radio Message Board


Sign In 

Create Account
If you're interested in joining the philosophical discussion, click "sign in" or "create account" on the right of the page. If you're creating a new account, please be sure to include an explanation as to why you're interested in joining the message board community. This verification requirement is included to cut down on possible troll and spam accounts.

If you have supported Freedomain Radio financially and would like immediate access to the message board - or - your donation status is incorrect, please contact Michael at operations@freedomainradio.com with your information and the situation will be addresses ASAP.
 
Guest Message by DevFuse

Saturday April 12th, 2014: Toronto Bitcoin Expo

Sunday April 13th, 2014: Sunday Call In Show at 10am Eastern

Monday April 14th, 2014: Peter Schiff Radio Show at 10am Eastern

Wednesday April 16th, 2014: Wednesday Call In Show at 8pm Eastern


56 Philosopher King files - 71 Gold files - 39 Silver files - 50 Bronze files


Update: A new silver level file on Peer Influence and Envy has been added! Click here to donate if you'd like access to the various premium sections. If your donator status is incorrect, please contact Michael at operations@freedomainradio.com with the relevant information and it will be corrected as soon as possible.

Photo

Does the Peaceful Parenting Philosophy, Have Sympathy for Miserable Parents? On Louis CK...


  • Please log in to reply
93 replies to this topic

#1
LifeIsBrief

LifeIsBrief

  • 158 posts

So, I don't know how to embed youtube videos, but there are two truly fantastic Louis CK bits on peaceful parenting, one from O&A and one from his special "Hilarious" that someone linked to once before, and in my humble opinion, they beg the question... Is Stefan a bit too hard on parents trapped in jobs, created by statism, that make them miserable? 

 

I would never hit my children, but at the same time, my mother occasionally spanked me when she was angry.  She was beaten as a child, and our entire society suggested that hitting children was tolerable.  We've gotten past it... It was rare, and not sadistic. There were no implements.  She has apologized to me. 

 

I feel sorry for both of my parents at this point, because they really don't understand how the system works, or why they're never happy.  I try to explain, but find them difficult to reason with... they were both beaten as children.  Should there be a bit more sympathy for unhappy parents?  Personally, I have a mixed view on it.  If you're not happy, you shouldn't try to bring another person into the world, but... society does tell you to...  Any thoughts?

 

The O&A Clip is here:

 

 

From Hilarious:

 

http://www.youtube.c...h?v=rOxoZ3exM_Q


  • 0

"Is he crazy... Or are we, who can remain unperturbed in an insane world, the crazy ones?"  Written by Akira Kurosawa for the film "Record of a Living Being"


#2
LovePrevails

LovePrevails

  • 1347 posts

My Personal View: Stef does not cut people enough slack however most people cut parents way too much slack so it might not be a bad thing at all, it at least pulls people over to the right side.

 

I am enjoying the above video - thank you for posting it.

 



  • 0

#3
Pepin

Pepin

  • 524 posts

The question becomes far more complicated when taking into account that they chose to have the child. If you have sympathy for the parent with the issues from childhood, then you must have a much greater deal of sympathy for the child of this parent as they have far less control over their environment and self as well as having no choice to be born.

 

I'd claim that you can certainly have sympathy, but your focus has to be on the child. To make an awkward comparison, if a parent was raped in their childhood, it makes total sense to have sympathy for the brutal past and all of the complications it has caused, yet if they are physically abusing their children, you ought to not focus on the parent and rather ought to focus on the children.

 

I can go more in depth into this argument, but fundamentally: you can do nothing to affect the parent's past, but you can plenty about the children's future. It is possible that expressing sympathy for the parent may have some positive benefit, but having sympathy for the children compels you to act.


  • 2

#4
LifeIsBrief

LifeIsBrief

  • 158 posts

Very well put Love Prevails and Pepin... I agree entirely that Stef is on the right side of history, and fighting the good fight in a world that is far too comfortable with violence against children. I just think that sometimes he doesn't cut parents dealing with the frustrating system we all live in, and their own personal experiences, enough slack. 

 

Both of my parents descend from alcoholics that were severely physically abusive, and they both remained sober and positive influences in my life.  Despite that, my mother still spanked me... a lot, and it was never productive.  Often I had committed a slight, or had peers lie about something I had done to get me punished, and this was very damaging to me as a child.  Still, because she realized that she was short tempered, and trusted other children, or at times teachers, more than both deserved to be trusted, she has been willing to admit her mistakes and apologize.  My father never raised his hand to me, and I was never hit with an implement, as both of my parents were.

 

In that sense, I feel relatively lucky, and I have to admit that compared to their childhood experience, they made an enormous step in the right direction.  Progress is often slow, and intergenerational.  None of this excuses the fact that I was occasionally hit, for things I hadn't even done... but, I do feel like my parents tried very hard, to improve their genetic line, by raising me much better than they were raised.  I think that, at times, small progress should be valued.  This is only a very mild criticism of Stef's approach to the family, which I find to be absolutely enlightening, and a breath of fresh air.


  • 0

"Is he crazy... Or are we, who can remain unperturbed in an insane world, the crazy ones?"  Written by Akira Kurosawa for the film "Record of a Living Being"


#5
JamesP

JamesP


  • 3636 posts

My Personal View: Stef does not cut people enough slack however most people cut parents way too much slack so it might not be a bad thing at all, it at least pulls people over to the right side.

 

Can you clarify your criticism?  What do you mean by "not cut people enough slack"?  Could you define what that means, give examples of it, and what specifically needs to be corrected?


  • 2

Connect with me: @jamesapyrich, Facebook, james-a-pyrich on Skype


Meetup with fellow local Freedomainers!

 

I accept BTC: 1DGcCf52Tnyc6pJbyQUwbiLj6Pkt6qHa3Y


-42 This post by CrazyCanuck is below the user reputation threshold. View it anyway?

#7
LifeIsBrief

LifeIsBrief

  • 158 posts

I wouldn't claim to speak for LP, but what I mean, when I say he doesn't cut parents enough slack... Is that in the 20 or so podcasts I've seen with callers, the investigation into the family always stops at the parents.  This makes perfect sense philosophically, because despite anything that happened in your parents past, they should have lived healthy, and happy lives, before they chose to reproduce.  Anything other than that, is categorically immoral.  Most people still don't see things this way.  Lots of unhappy people have children, and their families, friends, and even the state encourage it.  You're "supposed" to have children, and many people never understand what a vital moral choice this is.  It also makes sense for times sake, getting into grandparents would take forever.

 

That said...  One of my grandfathers fought in World War 2, and lost many of his friends, seeing horrifying and terrible things that I can't imagine.  The other fought in the Korean War, which was slightly smaller, but not much better.  They came back angry, and sad alcoholics, and they took it out on their families.  I cannot excuse their behavior, but it was a tragedy all around.  They didn't set out to become the people they became, they dealt with the horrible conditions they were thrust into, and they did it poorly.

 

In much of the Western World, depending on your age, this is the story of your grandparents.  Your grandmother worked in a factory, and your grandfather risked his life in one of the most catastrophic events in human history.  Again, this does not excuse the fact that they often became almost subhuman... but it does give me reason to have some sympathy for them.  Almost all of human life was a tragedy, nearly world wide before the end of the second World War. It was a constant struggle for the working class to barely survive.  In many places, it still is.

 

I just worry, that there's no room for the question "Did your parents do a better job with you, than their parents did with them?", in the philosophy.  Relativism is useless in pure philosophical terms, but if you want to forgive your parents their trespasses against you, it might be worth examining the people and environment which created them... and cut them a little slack, that, in all honesty, they might not objectively deserve.  Certainly, quite a few of the stories I've heard on FDR suggest that "No, it wasn't even a tiny bit better than my miserable WW2 fighting grandfather", and in that case sometimes you do simply need to cut dangerous and destructive people out of your life.  I just worry there's a bit of a middle ground, in which small amounts of progress have been made, and that might be worth recognizing.

 

Maybe it's the Buddhist in me.  In one of the Dalai Lama's books, he suggested that you're a Buddhist if you believe in the "four noble truths", which suggests that I am one.  "Suffering is inherent in life.  The reason for suffering is ignorance, and confusion.  The suffering can be overcome.  The path to the cessation of suffering is to gain knowledge, eliminate confusion, and engage in kind and loving behavior to all people"... would be the cliff notes version.  Sometimes I think Stef forgets, is unwilling to accept, or simply disagrees, that a lot of the people doing harm are just suffering, stupid, and unhappy. Very rarely though, usually he's right on the money, even if he has extreme distaste for Buddhism.


  • 1

"Is he crazy... Or are we, who can remain unperturbed in an insane world, the crazy ones?"  Written by Akira Kurosawa for the film "Record of a Living Being"


#8
powersquash

powersquash
  • 42 posts
Rape is still disgusting if I continually only put the tip in. Serial killers biographies generally contain the most horrendous childhood stories, yet they don't get any less of a sentence based on how their parents interacted with them. I just don't have sympathy for people who "only" do a little atrocity.

Also, if all this sympathy is given to the grandparents for choosing to go into the military and your parents for this that and the other, where is the sympathy for you?
  • 1

#9
LifeIsBrief

LifeIsBrief

  • 158 posts

Most people who fought in World War 2 and Korea, did not choose military service... they were drafted.  I know one of my grandparents was drafted, but I believe they both were.  They both left as soon as the war was over.  I still have almost no sympathy for how they treated their wives and children, it really was subhuman, and evil.

 

I do have some sympathy, for my mother, who was beaten as a child, taught by society that hitting children was an acceptable form of discipline, overworked, and unhappy.  This still excuses none of her behavior. I choose to look at what she went through, and the society she grew up in, and see the causes of her violent and immoral behavior.  I have used the sympathy created by this, as a bridge to forgiveness, and we now have a healthier, and more loving relationship then I ever could have imagined as a child, because of this.  I don't know if she really deserves this forgiveness, but I have to say, that I'm a happier person, because I have given it to her.


  • 0

"Is he crazy... Or are we, who can remain unperturbed in an insane world, the crazy ones?"  Written by Akira Kurosawa for the film "Record of a Living Being"


#10
JamesP

JamesP


  • 3636 posts

In the listener calls, it comes down to choice and responsibility.

 

I think all of us have heard that continual drumbeat that society puts out: "parents aren't to blame," or "they did the best they could."

 

Stef's approach (and I think this is right) is that he does not want to abandon responsibility.  If he gives up the responsibility for his bad choices, he cannot justly claim responsibility for his good choices.  It's a UPB thing.  So, if he takes responsibility for his bad and his good choices, he has the credibility to hold others responsible for their choices.

 

When a caller with a bad history comes on the show, their sense of responsibility is often extremely distorted, if not completely smashed.  Skipping over the responsibility of the caller's parents to the caller to his grandparents' responsibilities would not be helpful, and may well even be harmful.


  • 3

Connect with me: @jamesapyrich, Facebook, james-a-pyrich on Skype


Meetup with fellow local Freedomainers!

 

I accept BTC: 1DGcCf52Tnyc6pJbyQUwbiLj6Pkt6qHa3Y


#11
cherapple

cherapple

    Cheryl H


  • 434 posts

As a child of parents, you are never responsible for them. The tables do not turn, and your parents do not get a pass, because you grow up and become an adult like them, capable of taking care of things. No matter how old you get, and no matter how old your parents get, they are — and always have been, since the dawn of your existence — adults who are responsible for themselves. That responsibility includes, most of all, processing their own childhood history. You weren't there for that, and you never can be. You parents might tell you about it, and you might want to understand it, but it is information, and not an excuse for bad actions. 

 

Whatever pass you allow to your parents, you will allow to yourself, and history will repeat. (What James said.) 


  • 5

~*~*~

"As soon as you trust yourself, you will know how to live."

~ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe


#12
LifeIsBrief

LifeIsBrief

  • 158 posts

I completely agree James.   I would only suggest that having sympathy for someone, is not the same as allowing them to abandon personal responsibility.  I can have sympathy for my grandparents being drafted, and still think they became cruel human beings who do not deserve respect, and should be avoided, and shunned, at all costs. Maybe I just feel that there is room to look at peaceful parenting in geologic time, the way we look at ending the state in geologic time.


  • 0

"Is he crazy... Or are we, who can remain unperturbed in an insane world, the crazy ones?"  Written by Akira Kurosawa for the film "Record of a Living Being"


#13
Kevin Beal

Kevin Beal

    :)


  • 1393 posts

I wouldn't claim to speak for LP, but what I mean, when I say he doesn't cut parents enough slack... Is that in the 20 or so podcasts I've seen with callers, the investigation into the family always stops at the parents.  This makes perfect sense philosophically, because despite anything that happened in your parents past, they should have lived healthy, and happy lives, before they chose to reproduce.  Anything other than that, is categorically immoral.  Most people still don't see things this way.  Lots of unhappy people have children, and their families, friends, and even the state encourage it.  You're "supposed" to have children, and many people never understand what a vital moral choice this is.  It also makes sense for times sake, getting into grandparents would take forever.

I don't think you give parents enough credit. Parents know what they are doing. They aren't stupid. We know that they know because these are the topics that they avoid.

 

An excerpt from On Truth:

It is completely obvious that they know this, because they know exactly which topics to avoid. A counterfeiter will not mind if you ask him what the capital of Madagascar is. A counterfeiter will mind, however, if you ask him whether you can check the authenticity of his money. Why is this the one topic that he will try to avoid at all costs?

Because he knows that his currency is fake.

And he also knows that if you find that out, he can no longer use it to rob you blind.

 

I'm always a little annoyed to see how quickly people credit abuse to ignorance. What is the evidence for this? Because they claim ignorance? That's exactly what a toxic and guilty conscious would do!

 

And sympathy is to say to yourself that if you were in the same situation, you might do the same thing. I would actually strongly reject sympathy for abusers (at least your own abusers). That's how you end up avoiding your own responsibility. There may be some therapeutic value that I'm not aware of, but there is a danger there as well, and I'm inclined to dismiss out of hand the person who advocates sympathy without acknowledging the danger inherent. It just means that they haven't really thought it thru.


  • 3

"There is no law, no compulsion, no law of physics or man that is preventing you from living the life that you want" - Stef (The Greatest Gift in the Entire Universe)


#14
LifeIsBrief

LifeIsBrief

  • 158 posts

Okay... Everyone might hate me after I write this... but, let's do it.  Either I have issues that I need to resolve, or there are serious flaws in your logic.  More likely, both, because I already know I have to work on myself a lot more.

 

"I don't think you give parents enough credit.  Parents know what they are doing"

 

Evidence please... Have you seen the society we all live in?  The history of human civilization?  Constant war, murder, and self destruction ringing any bells?  Rampant statism?... Am I the only one who sees it?

 

Maybe it's just because I have a mild form of Aspergers, but every time I hear a young woman tell me that she wants to have children, I immediately ask "Are you happy?", because it's the obvious question... They look at me like I have 5 heads.  Most people have absolutely never considered the idea that it would be immoral to have children if they were unhappy, because that's not part of the propaganda they are fed every day of their lives.  Most people don't question anything.  People are dumb as hell.  Occasionally, they'll even try to tell me that "science has proven that having children releases endorphins".  To that I want to respond "So you're certain that will be enough endorphins?", and sometimes I do, it doesn't go over well. 

 

Where is the evidence for all of these brilliant self aware people in our species history?  A couple of them wrote books, but were they listened to by the masses?  How does recommending "Atlas Shrugged" go over in modern society?  Do a lot of people look at you like you're probably a greedy jerk?  A lot of people look at me that way when I recommend it.  What did Stefan say in his most recent video?  Consistently less than .5% of people vote libertarian, despite it's obvious advantages.

 

"I'm always a little annoyed to see how quickly people credit abuse to ignorance"... I'm always a little annoyed when people put words in my mouth that have nothing to do with what I said.  I credited spanking, to being beaten by a drunk alcoholic war veteran.  Hurt people, hurt people.  I credited unhappy people having children, with ignorance.  Not just ignorance, but ignorance and propaganda, if you don't see evidence of that rampant ignorance and propaganda... open your eyes.

 

"And sympathy is to say to yourself that if you were in the same situation, you might do the same thing"... Yeah, if I was beaten, bruised, and bloodied by an alcoholic father who hit my mother, and was then told my entire life that spanking is how you discipline a child, I might have spanked my child, as 90% of people in America do.  Does that make me a horrible human being?  Can you have sympathy, for people who do horrible things? No? I'm inclined to dismiss you out of hand then.  I have complete and utter sympathy for someone who abuses drugs, or steals food, because they're miserable and broken human beings.

 

How many times do I have to say, that having sympathy for another human being isn't the same thing as excusing their horrible actions?  I have a lot of sympathy for an incompetent, and unemployed man who steals food to feed himself, or his family, and then serves time for it. No amount of prison time is enough for you?  No matter how many times he's raped for robbing a liquor store you have no sympathy whatsoever?  I have news for you then... You might be a psychopath.

 

I would never hit my child... partially because I wasn't beaten by my father, and didn't see him ever strike my mother. My father was beaten by his, and his father beat my grandmother, and died an alcoholic at 52.  Did my father let my mother get away with slapping me... yes.  That was a horrible thing to do, here's the thing though... He also worked 80 hours a week to live in a neighborhood with a good school district.  Did my mother slap me too much?  Did she scream a whole lot? Yes.  Her father, beat the living crap out of her and everyone in her family, and people told her to slap me when I was bad.  Teachers listened to bully peers, and told her I was starting fights with them, rather than the other way around.  The state told her over and over again, that I was violent, while I was actually being bullied.  All this after she got home from working 50 hour weeks.

 

I have lots of sympathy, for miserable, misinformed people.  There is absolutely no reason not to.  My father kept himself entirely in control, and my mother never hit me with a closed fist or implement. This is a huge improvement, and still nowhere near enough.  She spent the next decade miserable, and constantly feeling bad for the slapping she did give me.  Never blamed her parents, took full responsibility, and has been trying to make it up to me ever since. Life is hard, and for most people a painful struggle.  I have sympathy for my mother, and if that makes you want to dismiss me out of hand, without knowing me, you haven't thought it through.


  • 0

"Is he crazy... Or are we, who can remain unperturbed in an insane world, the crazy ones?"  Written by Akira Kurosawa for the film "Record of a Living Being"


#15
Kevin Beal

Kevin Beal

    :)


  • 1393 posts

Hi LifeisBrief

 

I had one point that was the core of my criticism that you didn't really address. The rest is secondary as far as I'm concerned. And those things I probably didn't explain very well because I'm confused by your responses to them. One thing that jumps out at me is when I said I reject the idea of sympathizing with abusers. I would possibly need to amend that statement since I definitely do feel bad for the guy getting raped in prison in your example. I would call it horror rather than sympathy, but the feelings are there if that's any relief. I'm definitely not a psychopath...

 

I think that it's a mistake to think that people do destructive things because they are stupid or ignorant. As far as I understand it, people can believe propaganda only because they create a split in their psyche (simultaneously rejecting that propaganda). The part that believes the propaganda is completely unsustainable and must be constantly reinforced (that's kinda what makes it propaganda). The maintenance of that propaganda is inevitably going to lead to conflict, it will cause confusion and cognitive dissonance, all sorts of signs that person must actively ignore in order to keep themselves from being honest with themselves. That alone is evidence of culpability.

 

A person who is a serial killer or a rapist or just the worst kind of scummy person still comes up with some justification for what they are doing. The maniacal evil villain who plots to do evil for evil's sake doesn't exist AFAIK. The self deception is the part where we know they are culpable. If it were genuine ignorance, they would never need the self deception or to avoid the question.

 

It's not hard to get why hitting a child is so cowardly and petty. Nobody is that stupid.

 

We can blame a guy for getting drunk and smashing into someone's house. His intoxication is not an excuse. Likewise, this self deception, false self stuff is an intoxicant, but it doesn't excuse anybody.

 

If you mistake corruption for ignorance, then you are going to not see it for what it really is, and you will likely fall prey to it.

 

Ignorance is such a convenient excuse, and the more I learn about myself, the more I realize how not ignorant I am, and how I need to stop using it as an excuse myself.

 

I hope that makes some kind of sense.


  • 0

"There is no law, no compulsion, no law of physics or man that is preventing you from living the life that you want" - Stef (The Greatest Gift in the Entire Universe)


#16
Josh F

Josh F

    Thought Terrorist


  • 748 posts

Very well put Love Prevails and Pepin... I agree entirely that Stef is on the right side of history, and fighting the good fight in a world that is far too comfortable with violence against children. I just think that sometimes he doesn't cut parents dealing with the frustrating system we all live in, and their own personal experiences, enough slack. 

 

Both of my parents descend from alcoholics that were severely physically abusive, and they both remained sober and positive influences in my life.  Despite that, my mother still spanked me... a lot, and it was never productive.  Often I had committed a slight, or had peers lie about something I had done to get me punished, and this was very damaging to me as a child.  Still, because she realized that she was short tempered, and trusted other children, or at times teachers, more than both deserved to be trusted, she has been willing to admit her mistakes and apologize.  My father never raised his hand to me, and I was never hit with an implement, as both of my parents were.

 

In that sense, I feel relatively lucky, and I have to admit that compared to their childhood experience, they made an enormous step in the right direction.  Progress is often slow, and intergenerational.  None of this excuses the fact that I was occasionally hit, for things I hadn't even done... but, I do feel like my parents tried very hard, to improve their genetic line, by raising me much better than they were raised.  I think that, at times, small progress should be valued.  This is only a very mild criticism of Stef's approach to the family, which I find to be absolutely enlightening, and a breath of fresh air.

Yeah for sure, parents have been getting better over time.  Many parents would drug crying babies, infanticide was rampant until industrialism, and children are often raped and beaten throughout history.  Unfortunately, but maybe to their ultimate credit, our parents generation is amongst the first to raise kids who would become peaceful parents.  I think in the future there will be a significant historic schism, peaceful parents and abusive ones, and our parents were part of that abusive category.

 

Here is the thing though.  It isn't about what your parents deserve.  You're not responsible for dolling out some divine punishment.  It is about you, the victim, and having sympathy and love for yourself.  For example, if I was to start smacking you in the face, would you forgive me if I was the victim of abuse?  I don't think so, you'd hold me accountable for my actions and adjust your accordingly.  I'm certain I wouldn't be invited over for dinner, right?  Why can't we hold everyone to the same consistent moral standards?


  • 1

-36 This post by STer is below the user reputation threshold. View it anyway?

#18
LifeIsBrief

LifeIsBrief

  • 158 posts

"It's not hard to realize why hitting a child is so cowardly and petty.  Nobody is that stupid"

 

I think this is the core of our disagreement.  Yes, almost all people obviously were that stupid, for almost all of human history.  What you're really saying here, is that nobody is dumb enough to believe what they're told.  Human beings learn by watching and become creatures of habit.

 

I just think it's very weird how a lot of people here immediately compare a parent who spends 99% of their time helping a child, and 1% slapping them... to rapists and murderers.  It seems like people here think that slapping makes you a horrible human being that no one should have sympathy for.  People who don't have sympathy for 90% of their country, kinda scare me.  Even though you're right that slapping is wrong.

 

This would be my response ThoughtTerrorist too.  If you started smacking me, we're both adults, and you haven't been propagandized by all of society that violence among adults is acceptable.  You also didn't feed cloth and spend 99% of your time nurturing and helping me for 3 decades.  If we were close friends for ten years, I knew you were abused, and one day you got drunk and hit me, yes, I could probably forgive you.  It's the absolutism that worries me.

 

Also STer, yeah, I'm arguing that lots of behavior is unconscious conformity, could be wrong.


  • 0

"Is he crazy... Or are we, who can remain unperturbed in an insane world, the crazy ones?"  Written by Akira Kurosawa for the film "Record of a Living Being"


#19
xelent

xelent

  • 2164 posts

Here is the thing though.  It isn't about what your parents deserve.  You're not responsible for dolling out some divine punishment.  It is about you, the victim, and having sympathy and love for yourself.

 

I thought this was a particularly well placed thought when it comes to dealing with abusers, whether they are conscious or not of their actions.


  • 0

-36 This post by STer is below the user reputation threshold. View it anyway?

#21
Rainbow Jamz

Rainbow Jamz

    That Popular Anti-Social Guy


  • 762 posts

The guys in the clip sound like they're almost there. They are able to be honest about their experience that it was a crappy thing to be spanked, and even TOLD why they were about to get spanked. That IS torture. I just think they didn't go far enough into the topic to say it IS morally wrong to hit children and for Louis to say that he understands why parents, single mothers especially, would hit their kids. That was excusing evil with sympathy. You can still sympathize with them, but that shouldn't absolve them of the responsibility for having done what they have done.

 

I think it's highly worth the effort to get an abusive parent (preferably one that isn't your own) to examine their own childhoods and begin to see how bad it really was to cause them to be abusive in the first place. It's my belief that once they see the truth about their experience, it's not a guarantee, but it does increase their chances of improving. They can still be abusive, but knowing where it comes from is half the battle, and the guilt will crush them tenfold if they ever do lash out on their kids. If they have developed any respect for their inner children, they can almost as easily empathize with their actual children.


  • 0

Nothing is permanent, only short term or long term.


#22
Kevin Beal

Kevin Beal

    :)


  • 1393 posts

@lifeisBrief

 

You still didn't respond to the main point that I'm driving at. (The point about self deception and avoiding questions).

 

 

Also:

 

Why does it matter how unconscious they are? I don't see how that matters at all.

 

A serial murderer is probably going to be almost entirely unconscious of his actions. You have to be a little unconscious in order to do immoral things, the more evil, the more unconscious I would guess. So now we're excusing everyone to the degree to which what they did was evil.

 

I think the comparison between being unconscious because you chose repeatedly to suppress, and being drunk is a good one (i.e. the degree to which a person avoids self knowledge is how responsible they are).

 

Relevant podcast:

770 – Abuse and Restitution


  • 0

"There is no law, no compulsion, no law of physics or man that is preventing you from living the life that you want" - Stef (The Greatest Gift in the Entire Universe)


#23
LifeIsBrief

LifeIsBrief

  • 158 posts

I agree Mysterion, it is morally wrong, they come up short in that regard.

 

I'll be honest, I don't really understand your point about self deception, avoiding questions, and that making you culpable Kevin.  You keep accusing me of excusing the behavior.  I do not, it is morally wrong.  Do lots of people self deceive? Yes, but also lots of people are incredibly dumb, and their brains have been broken by abuse.  They don't have time to self deceive, they're too busy dealing with pain, and maybe the self deception, and avoiding questions comes from them being hit in response to not engaging in those activities.  They asked questions, they got the belt, maybe that's how their brain is broken.  That would be the difference between conscious and unconscious. 

 

To say it's all conscious self deception, and avoiding questions, is basically to say that everyone born before 1950 was evil.  I don't think they knew any better, at all, until very recently.  In fact, you may even be able to make the historical argument, that before the end of WW2, spanking was preparation for boot camp, where a large percent of young men ended up, before war.  "One day you're going to get shot, or stabbed, if you don't listen"... Is that a stretch?  Maybe, our history is full of it though.  This idea it was always evil, everyone knew it, and they're all immoral people unworthy of sympathy, is a new one and it's a bit confusing to me.

 

If you hit your child today, are you obviously doing something immoral, and choosing to ignore everything we've learned about raising children in the last 50 years?  Yes, of course.  Was my mother deceiving herself, and responsible for her immoral actions, yes... but they weren't the only actions in her life.  That's where things seem to get a bit weird here, the whole "drop of dirty water, in a pool of clean".  People all over the world constantly fail to live up to their own moral codes.  You do the best you can.  I drink a bit too much, and before ever having children, I need to fix that problem.  Does having a vice, make me a categorically immoral person unworthy of sympathy?  I don't think so, I think it means I have a vice, that I need to work on.

 

My mother came home for work, angry and sad.  When the first thing she had to deal with was me having gotten in trouble, or just demanding attention from her, or yelling, she slapped me sometimes.  This was a vice, a horrible series of events that really hurt me... but it's not all she did with her life.  She also read to me, nurtured me, fed me...  I mean, the list of positive things she did for me is unending.  To take away sympathy from a person, for ever having done bad things, seems a bit... crazy.

 

That said, there's a reason Louis CK had sympathy for his mom slapping him, but his father beating him, led to "the second I'm old enough, I'm getting away from this man".  I think there's a grey area, where sympathy is acceptable, despite it still being categorically cruel and immoral.  Rape, and murder, are where sympathy becomes dangerous.  Screw those people, they're ruining other human beings lives, and everyone has always known those things were wrong.  I don't think slapping ruined my life.


  • -4

"Is he crazy... Or are we, who can remain unperturbed in an insane world, the crazy ones?"  Written by Akira Kurosawa for the film "Record of a Living Being"


#24
Kevin Beal

Kevin Beal

    :)


  • 1393 posts

I don't think slapping ruined my life.

Who said that it did? Isn't this just a bad strawman? Who said that one smack is going to ruin someone's life?

 

Who is blowing child abuse out of proportion? What specifically was said? What are you comparing that example to? Is this person(s) the worst offender in this regard?

 

Also, it's not like it's conscious or unconscious like a binary state. Even in the throws of a powerful psychological defense you can still be conscious of whatever you listen for, at least that's my experience, maybe that doesn't apply to everyone.


  • 0

"There is no law, no compulsion, no law of physics or man that is preventing you from living the life that you want" - Stef (The Greatest Gift in the Entire Universe)


#25
LifeIsBrief

LifeIsBrief

  • 158 posts

Obviously people completely disagree with me here.  I don't even know how my last comment was any different than previous comments.  In general I don't understand people.

 

I didn't say someone said it ruined my life, it's you making a straw man, by cutting out the sentence right before that sentence.  I'm saying that there's a gray area between slapping, and rape, murder, and serial murder, which are the comparisons I'm getting.  The third line in your last comment goes straight to the serial murderer example.  I don't understand how that has anything to do with having sympathy for someone who was beaten, and then slaps. 

 

I was talking about progress being made in the area of hitting children, slowly over time, like the progress we want made on the state.  Every single response I've written suggests that slapping is immoral, and there's no excuse for it.  Yet, every response to me is about how I'm giving people a pass, and excusing it.  I'm pretty sure I should just shut up, because obviously I don't speak English.


  • 0

"Is he crazy... Or are we, who can remain unperturbed in an insane world, the crazy ones?"  Written by Akira Kurosawa for the film "Record of a Living Being"


#26
powersquash

powersquash
  • 42 posts
Why are you giving up on your argument? Stand strong. If you believe something is true, regardless of what others are saying, provide examples, science, and reason to it and nobody can say you're wrong.

Going off the last bit you said about physical abuse progressively getting better- I don't think that slowly over time is ok. If you hit a child, unless that child has a gun to you or some other non-exsistent life/death scenario, you are being abusive. If you were to slap a cop, even if you were stressed and raised badly, you're going to jail or being shot. If you were to slap your mom back when she slapped you, do you think she would have not retaliated? If you were to slap your boss, would you be fired? Its not "OK" in any of those instances so, to me as well as others, its not OK to do to a child.
  • 0

#27
LifeIsBrief

LifeIsBrief

  • 158 posts

I'll try, I just worry that my poor communication skills are making it sound like I'm defending a position, that I don't hold.

 

If anyone here feels like they were abused by their parents, and it's not worth spending any more time with them, or giving them another chance... they're right.  That's a deeply personal choice that has nothing to do with me.  Being buddhish, I think you should have sympathy for every human being that is suffering, but that does not mean letting them back in your life.  I can feel sorry for my grandparents being drafted, and still think they were really cruel human beings who should be avoided at all cost.

 

I think that comes off as sounding contradictory.  I also think that slapping is a step in the right direction from beating, which has allowed me to be more aware of peaceful parenting.  If I had been beaten as my parents were, I feel like I may have thought it was okay to have children while I still had serious vices, and I may have spanked them.  This would not be okay.  I just think it's a trap I may have fallen into.  It seems really hard to get this across while advocating sympathy, and maybe it's because that word has religious connotations?  It's immoral, it's a horrible tragedy that any parent has ever hit any child.  I do think that's a new discovery though, and humanity is working on implementation.

 

Again, I apologize if it seems like I'm trying to defend abusers.  Nothing could be further from the truth.  I just feel sorry for anyone who's unhappy.  I think it's important to make sure that everyone you know believes in peaceful parenting.  I just also learned to forgive my mother after a lot of work, and her really starting from below the ground up.  This has been a positive experience for both of us, so I wouldn't want to deny anyone that either.  I also wouldn't want to support lacking sympathy, for... well anyone... again, I just think it's always a positive quality.  I feel sorry for murderers, because most of them are sad, pathetic, lonely, and abused individuals... that doesn't mean I want to let them out of jail.  They still committed a horrible crime that they are personally responsible for, and they must endure the consequences.


  • 0

"Is he crazy... Or are we, who can remain unperturbed in an insane world, the crazy ones?"  Written by Akira Kurosawa for the film "Record of a Living Being"


-36 This post by STer is below the user reputation threshold. View it anyway?

#29
Rainbow Jamz

Rainbow Jamz

    That Popular Anti-Social Guy


  • 762 posts

Sorry for being irrelevant, but that part of the podcast where Stef gives that guy directions is hilarious! I always wondered who was around when he did solo casts.


  • 0

Nothing is permanent, only short term or long term.


#30
LanceD

LanceD

  • 187 posts

Very well put Love Prevails and Pepin... I agree entirely that Stef is on the right side of history, and fighting the good fight in a world that is far too comfortable with violence against children. I just think that sometimes he doesn't cut parents dealing with the frustrating system we all live in, and their own personal experiences, enough slack.

Both of my parents descend from alcoholics that were severely physically abusive, and they both remained sober and positive influences in my life. Despite that, my mother still spanked me... a lot, and it was never productive. Often I had committed a slight, or had peers lie about something I had done to get me punished, and this was very damaging to me as a child. Still, because she realized that she was short tempered, and trusted other children, or at times teachers, more than both deserved to be trusted, she has been willing to admit her mistakes and apologize. My father never raised his hand to me, and I was never hit with an implement, as both of my parents were.

In that sense, I feel relatively lucky, and I have to admit that compared to their childhood experience, they made an enormous step in the right direction. Progress is often slow, and intergenerational. None of this excuses the fact that I was occasionally hit, for things I hadn't even done... but, I do feel like my parents tried very hard, to improve their genetic line, by raising me much better than they were raised. I think that, at times, small progress should be valued. This is only a very mild criticism of Stef's approach to the family, which I find to be absolutely enlightening, and a breath of fresh air.


I'm sorry but as a parent myself this post is rather disturbing to me. Any rational, humble person should know that they are not perfect and that when they are going to do something they haven't done before they should first attempt to learn how to do it. Your parents understood that they first needed to learn to drive before buying a car, yet they didn't first need to learn to be a parent before having a child?!

My son is 8 and his childhood began with me assuming the typical role of the authoritarian father, including the occasional spanking.. Through self examination, a drive to learn and a deep love for my child I have since changed this behavior and fully adopted peaceful parenting, and I'm now reaping the rewards because my son is quickly becoming an awesome person. Yet I still carry the guilt associated with the past ways I have wronged my son.

If I had continued on along my path would that be okay? I mean I deal with all the same stresses as everyone else and iI was given a shitty example on parenting by my own parents. So my initial ideas on parenting were hardly my fault. Yet based on what you seem to be saying I should have been understood and forgiven and only expected to apologize after the fact? That doesn't make any sense and only serves to excuse people from their own faults and willfull ignorance.

In this age of the Internet it's incredibly easy to access countless hours if educational material on being a good parent, the only way one can continue on the path they are on is by making a conscious decision to do so! So while I would understand a more forgiving attitude being granted towards generations past, assuming the person shows honest guilt and attempts to reconcile, because they didn't know any better. Any parent raising their child in the modern age has absolutely no excuse for being a crappy parent. Get your shit together, stop thinking your children are there for you and do right by then because they deserve it. Anything less is inexcusable and one of the worst crimes perpetrated in our society.
  • 2

We're not responsible for how we're born, but we are responsible for how we die.


#31
LifeIsBrief

LifeIsBrief

  • 158 posts

Again, I really feel like I don't speak English.  I always have difficulty interacting with people, so I'm not surprised it extends to this forum... but how you read what I say, and find it disturbing, is beyond me.

 

My mother raised me to 8, 22 years ago, so she obviously had way less information than you did, and no internet.  You say everyone should learn to raise a child before they have one, but you didn't, you took on the "traditional role of an authoritarian father" despite all the extra information available to you, but find my forgiveness of my mother disturbing?  She stopped around 12, and through self examination, realized she was wrong, and started trying to make it up to me, before the internet was popular.

 

I say, it's not okay, for you to have ever embarked on the path of authoritarianism, it's immoral, and there is no excuse.  The same is true for her, and you suggest that I'm saying that if she had "stayed on that path" it would be okay.  That's not what I said at all.  You both have guilty consciences because what you did was immoral. The sentence "my initial ideas on parenting were hardly my fault", is directly contradictory, to your opening statement.  People should be shown forgiveness when "the person shows honest guilt and attempts to reconcile, because they didn't know any better"... That's been the whole point of what I have written, but I would go farther and suggest, that everyone in the last 50 years has known better, so it takes a special effort, over decades, to overcome those mistakes.

 

Is the problem that some of you think I'm already a parent who hits his child?  As I said, I have issues with alcohol, and will never consider having a child until I am completely sober, happy, productively employed, in love with a wife, and have my temper under control enough to raise them peacefully... "anything less is inexcusable". 


  • 0

"Is he crazy... Or are we, who can remain unperturbed in an insane world, the crazy ones?"  Written by Akira Kurosawa for the film "Record of a Living Being"


#32
LanceD

LanceD

  • 187 posts
I was more referencing the idea of being understanding of bad parents. If your mother has successfully repaired your relationship who am I to judge?

However you seem to be using her as an example by which we can be more forgiving and understanding to parents currently doing a poor job, and that I find disturbing.
  • 0

We're not responsible for how we're born, but we are responsible for how we die.


-36 This post by STer is below the user reputation threshold. View it anyway?

#34
LanceD

LanceD

  • 187 posts
I see your ooint STer snd its deffinitely a good one. However it leaves us in a weird position. Are these people responsible adults behaving badly or helpless victims further suffering from crimes committed against them? I would say they are equal parts of both, yet where does that leave us in regard to holding them responsible for their actions?

Are the responsible adults committing g acts of abuse they should be held accountable for?

Are they simply helplessly doomed to repeat crimes committed against them and should be sympathized with?

And if its the first, then what other behaviors can we excuse people for because they had a bad childhood? Assault, murder, rape, child molestation?

I lean towards holding any adult responsible regardless of where they come from. However I admit it may not be the best way, should I see this differently?
  • 0

We're not responsible for how we're born, but we are responsible for how we die.


-36 This post by STer is below the user reputation threshold. View it anyway?




0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users