Reply To: Suggestions of how discussions might be framed

  • Charles Rykken

    June 3, 2023 at 9:09 am

    I believe I am drawing very plausible inferences, not engaging in flame wars. There is solid research (which I can easily quote) that says that one of the solid early childhood indicators that someone will become a political conservative as an adult is being very fearful as a child. Look at Ian’s presentation at the AI convention

    and you tell me he doesn’t look like he is about to shit his pants in fear. After calling artificial intelligence artificial stupidity he did have reason to think someone might pop out of the audience and clean his clock. Another early childhood indicator of adult political orientation, this time liberal, is being a leader in grade school. Note, it MUST be in grade school, the later years do not correlate with later political orientation. The boy second to right is(was, he died last month) Howard Ives. He and I put on the first drag queen parade in Tioga, ND in 1955 when I was seven. We both dressed up in his mothers dresses and shoes etc(it was Howard’s idea but I thought, what the hey, why not). He later came out as a flaming gay while in high school. Yay, Howard!!!! The photo below is of my eighth birthday party. I am second from the left. The boy seated to my left is Larry Sandberg. He was a Sioux Indian and his father was the high school janitor. To my right is Duane Larson, a boy’s boy. I was not only the smartest boy in my class, I was the toughest. No one picked a fight with me because they knew it was a losing proposition. However, I NEVER, took the first punch or shove. John Wayne was my model. He would only fight after someone hit him first. At age ten I realized that fighting was stupid and that violence only caused more violence and the only thing that was proven was who was the better fighter. I took a sacred vow that I would no longer practice violence. In the sixth grade, there were about three boys who wanted revenge and forced me into a fight where I basically let them beat me up. Since the age of ten I have not so much as laid a rough hand on anyone (with three exceptions, one at age 13 and two at age 16, those are separate stories of some interest). Fear is not something that has had much of an influence on my life. I have many stories about my near total lack of fear like the time I went to Chicago to attend Illinois Institute of Technology. I started a conversation with a black women who was a ticket taker at a movie theater. I recognized the book she was reading. She was interested in this white bread from North Dakota and when I told her I loved jazz, she invited me to her apartment where she introduced me to her boyfriend and we set up a few dates where we went to some southside bars(black neighborhood) and I got to hear some jazz greats like Muddy Waters perform live. I was in a bar with about 100 patrons and I was the only non-black person. The bartender did not want me in the bar as legal drinking age was 21 and I was 18. The six to eight people who shared the table with me all vouched that I was cool and they would watch me to be sure I didn’t so much as take a tiny sip of any alcoholic drink. People can sniff out prejudice mostly by seeing fear in the eyes of a person. All the black people(and a whole host of prejudiced minorities where I am very welcome) saw immediately that I had zero fear. So…. I know a panty waist coward when I see one. And I am not trying to flame someone because I am not sure of my masculinity. In fact, I utterly despise patriarchy and toxic masculinity. Remember, a life long practitioner of non-violence. But like Mahatma Gandhi, if the situation calls for it I could kill someone in a heart beat. So far the situation has never called for it.