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James Boulware: Another male rage bomb goes off in Dallas

A mug shot of James Boulware from a previous arrest
A mug shot of James Boulware from a previous arrest

Last night, as you probably have heard, a Dallas man named James Boulware launched a one-man quasi-military assault on the Dallas Police Department headquarters, firing an automatic rife with such abandon that early reports suggested that there were as many as four different shooters. After fleeing the scene in an armored “Zombie Apocalypse Van,” leaving behind an assortment of improvised explosives as a kind of going away gift, Boulware was cornered in a restaurant parking lot; after a long standoff, he was eventually killed by a police sniper’s bullet. It was something of a miracle that no one but Boulware ended up dead.

Boulware’s father told local news that his son had been “pushed past” his “breaking point” after losing custody of his son. Men’s Rights activists often describe men who “resort to violence” after losing a custody dispute as victims of a cruel family court system.

But in Boulware’s case, it appears, nothing could be further from the truth. 

Because, you see, he lost custody of his son two years ago — after a violent incident that offered a chilling prequel to last night’s rampage. As the local NBC affiliate reported at the time

A Paris man was arrested after family members reported to authorities that they were concerned he could go on a shooting spree. …

Officers confiscated several guns from a Paris home, after arresting the owner. “There are four or five long guns and three or four pistols, tubs full of ammunition, and the body armor,” says Paris Police Chief Bob Hundley.

James Boulware, 33, allegedly grabbed and choked his mother in Dallas on Tuesday morning, and he has made other threats, police and family members said.

“That he was going to just kill all the adult members of the family and then that’s when he made the comment he may shoot up some churches and schools,” says Hundley.

“He had been talking about the schools and churches being soft targets, being easy targets because no one in them was armed,” a man who identified himself as Boulware’s brother “Andrew” said.

After this incident, a judge handed over custody of Boulware’s son to Boulware’s mother; it seems rather clear that the court was right to deem him unfit to care for the boy.

Further confounding the standard Men’s Rights narrative is the fact that the mother of the child, reportedly a drug addict, was also deemed unfit; both were ordered by the court to pay child support to Boulware’s mother.

Boulware was well-known to local police for this and other family disputes — as well as for repeatedly threatening the judge involved in his case.

Indeed, he littered Facebook and other websites with comments ranting about the alleged injustice done to him, alongside angry and often hateful attacks on “Comrad [sic] Obama” and the “fag loving, abortion have typical queer American brain washed troll[s]” who argued with him online. After a commenter called him “dumb” in one recent discussion of American foreign policy, Boulware declared that “I’M TRYING TO FIND OUT WHERE YOU LIVE SO I CAN DRAG YOU OUT OF YOUR TRAILOR AND BEAT YOUR BITCH A$$!!!!”

His conspiracy theories may have been driven by delusions; Boulware’s mother says her son “heard voices” and that she and other family members had tried in vain to get him the mental health treatment he needed.

After last night’s events, Boulware’s father told local media that, while he didn’t think what his son had done was right, “we all have a breaking point, and they pushed him past it.”

But Boulware, it seems fairly clear, was already plenty broken long before “the system” got to him. And no matter how sad or angry he was about losing custody of his son, nothing justifies a violent attack on innocent strangers with assault rifles and explosives. Most people, even if they were pushed far past their breaking point, wouldn’t respond with attempted mass murder. We are not all rage bombs waiting to go off.

And that’s when this post comes back around to the Men’s Rights movement. No, despite his anger at the police and courts for “taking away his kid,” and his penchant for calling people “BITCHES” in comments sections he doesn’t seem to have been a Men’s Rights activist.

But his was the kind of rage that Men’s Rights activists like to “warn” us all about; his violence was the sort of violence that MRAs all too often excuse.

I’ve written many times before about the way the Men’s Rights movement has lionized Tom Ball, a New Hampshire man who committed suicide several years ago by lighting himself on fire outside a court building — in hopes, as he explained in a long and inflammatory manifesto — of inspiring other men to start fire-bombing courthouses and police stations to avenge the wrongs allegedly inflicted on men by the family courts.

We’re lucky no one took him up on this suggestion, just as we are lucky today that no one except Boulware died in his assault on the Dallas police.

Boulware’s apparent mental illness, and the extreme nature of his assault on police, may keep him from becoming the MRA martyr that Ball became after his death. But MRAs have been willing to excuse if not justify similar violence in the past.

Consider, for example, “How we kill Johnny,” the story Men’s Rights celebrity Paul Elam has just posted to his new “consulting” site An Ear for Men.

In the story — presented as a true one — Elam describes his feelings upon learning of the murder-suicide of a young man he’d worked with as a substance abuse counselor. After a quick mention of the murder part of the murder-suicide — Johnny was said to have “killed that little girl he was married to” and shot, though not fatally, the man she was sleeping with — Elam moves on to the real victim, in his estimation: Johnny, the guy who pulled the trigger.

Johnny, as Elam sees it, was really only guilty of loving the woman he killed too much.

You see, men love. They love with the most profound intensity and selflessness of which any creature on this earth is capable. And the steely bond between them and women is, unlike their hearts, unbreakable. …

They will lay down in traffic for the women they love and stand in the way of bullets to protect them. 

Yes, that’s right. He’s waxing poetic about men protecting the women they love — in the middle of a story about a man who killed the woman he loved.

I hope, more than anything else, that at some point in our future that people start to think. When you see the story on the evening news about a man who set himself ablaze outside a family court, ask yourself what kind of pain could drive someone to cure it with fire?

I can only assume this is a reference to Ball, who hoped that men would rise up to avenge his pain with firebombs.

When you read in the newspaper about the man who holed up in his house with a gun and his children, threatening to take them all out, ask yourself if this is just a crazy man, or a man driven to the brink by a pain so monstrous and devastating that even the unthinkable could become an option?

The fact is we “read in the newspaper” and on the internet about men like this all the time. And they are virtually always men. Murder-suicide, while rare, is an overwhelmingly male crime. Women lose custody too — as did the mother of the child in Boulware’s case — but outside of a few exceptional cases they don’t react to this by trying to murder fathers or judges or an entire police departments at once. Men sometimes do.

Elam has in the past “warned” us all that unless we start kowtowing to angry men like him, and soon, we will create a massive “male bomb” that will tear apart society as we know it today.

But men — or at least the vast majority of them — aren’t rage bombs. Those men who do resort to extreme violence — like Boulware and all the men we read about who kill their partners and sometimes even their children before, as they say, “turning the gun on themselves” — aren’t the victims they and Men’s Rights activists would like us all to see them as. They’re the perps — invariably men with an overgrown sense of entitlement, too in love with their own rage.

Those who use these men as a “warning” to the rest of us are playing a very old game, perfected by domestic abusers and bullies of all sorts. Abusers and bullies learn very quickly that they don’t always have to use violence to get what they want; the threat of violence is enough. “Don’t push me,” they say, and the implicit threat of an “explosion” of rage does the rest, all while enabling the bully to pretend to be the victim.

The Men’s Rights movement, to a large extent, is all about taking that implicit threat to the societal level.

It’s up to us to keep them from getting away with it.

 

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pkayden
6 years ago

I don’t understand why White males like Keith think it’s their place to tell Black people what we can or cannot protest about or who we decide can speak on our behalf. That’s not for you to say and no one cares about what you think. Your opinion means nada to the Black community.

If Black people don’t march about police shootings where White males are the victims, that’s our business. Many of us feel that White police officers shooting down Black victims is a real problem which has racism as its root cause and dates back to the founding of this country. That’s our business.

We’re not your children. We’re not your family. We’re not your friends. But keep running your mouth about how much it irks you to no end that we speak up for our rights. That’s your problem that you’ll have to work out. Not ours.

Pandapool -- The Species that Endangers YOU (aka Banana Jackie Cake, for those who still want to call me "Banana", "Jackie" or whatever)
Pandapool -- The Species that Endangers YOU (aka Banana Jackie Cake, for those who still want to call me "Banana", "Jackie" or whatever)
6 years ago

I mean phrases and insults we use, not used on us.

fromafar2013
6 years ago

Other than that, I use normal English to insult people.

Here in Picksburg we call ’em “jag offs”.

Sometimes two words, often one. But yinzer is known for squishing entire sentences down into a single word.

http://www.pittsburghese.com/glossary.ep.html?type=phrases

Catalpa
Catalpa
6 years ago

Right, I was just aboot to go for a Tim’s run, but I couldn’t leave SFHCs and Sunnysombras rants unaccompanied, eh? Wouldn’t be terribly polite. So, hey, Keith, some of us Canucks up in the Great White North can manage to drag ourselves away from the hockey game long enough to boot up the laptops we have in our igloos, too. And I’m sorry, but you make more useless nose and leave more shit behind you than a Canadian goose does. How’s aboot you scamper off and I’ll give you a shiny loonie, eh?

Catalpa
Catalpa
6 years ago

*noise, not nose.

And damn stereotypical Canadian politeness. Couldn’t give him a proper telling off. Sigh.

EJ (The Other One)
EJ (The Other One)
6 years ago

(It always amuses me that Canadians see themselves as so polite, when over in Europe they have a reputation as blood-soaked killers. Canadian soldiers terrified everyone during the world wars with how horrifyingly good they were at the business of violence, and then went back home promptly afterwards; with the result that they are now something of a bogeyman.)

Paradoxical Intention
6 years ago

The scariest people are usually the nicest.

You don’t want to push someone so kind and polite over the edge. Because when their patience snaps, it SNAPS.

Catalpa
Catalpa
6 years ago

Hey, it is perfectly possible to be polite AND terrifying.

Or, as our boatload of tone-policing trolls have shown, to be polite and also a complete asshole.

Paradoxical Intention
6 years ago

You know, looking back over Keith’s posts, I don’t think he’s that old. I mean, I’m 25 (though I assume Keith thinks I’m a teenager, judging from the amount of condescension he’s attempting to lay on in a very sorry attempt to save face), and he can’t be much older than thirty or forty judging from his writing style.

Keith | June 16, 2015 at 6:40 pm
I’ve got news for you: I was attacking bigots on the internet before you were born.

He’s trying (poorly, might I add) to co-opt feminist language and use the term SJW, and the internet wasn’t made for public use until around the late 1980’s, shortly before I was born (like a year or so). So if Keith was, as he claims “arguing with bigots on the internet long before I was born”, then he had to have been at the very least twenty when it came out. I can’t imagine someone younger than that “arguing with bigots”, unless his memories of events are fuzzy, as old memories tend to be with everyone.

Or, he’s a frequent flyer at AVfM, and trying to lie to make us take him more seriously.

It’s not working, Keith.

Pandapool -- The Species that Endangers YOU (aka Banana Jackie Cake, for those who still want to call me "Banana", "Jackie" or whatever)
Pandapool -- The Species that Endangers YOU (aka Banana Jackie Cake, for those who still want to call me "Banana", "Jackie" or whatever)
6 years ago

@Paradoxical

Did they have bigots on those old BBS boards? I mean, there couldn’t have been many people on there. The internet didn’t be mainstream until the late 90s/early 2000s anyway.

Paradoxical Intention
6 years ago

I don’t know, Panda, but I imagine that most people who were that biased or racist were too stuck in their ways by the time the internet became a public thing to even bother with it. People who are that bigoted tend to hate change of any kind.

Would some of our confirmed older Mammotheers like to weigh in?

Pandapool -- The Species that Endangers YOU (aka Banana Jackie Cake, for those who still want to call me "Banana", "Jackie" or whatever)
Pandapool -- The Species that Endangers YOU (aka Banana Jackie Cake, for those who still want to call me "Banana", "Jackie" or whatever)
6 years ago

Well, I mean they probably did have bigots, but as I understood, BBS boards weren’t very popular and were told about through word of mouth and stuff. Like, people had to tell you the number and you had to dial it in to get to the board. That’s pretty much what I’ve heard.

Pandapool -- The Species that Endangers YOU (aka Banana Jackie Cake, for those who still want to call me "Banana", "Jackie" or whatever)
Pandapool -- The Species that Endangers YOU (aka Banana Jackie Cake, for those who still want to call me "Banana", "Jackie" or whatever)
6 years ago

YOU KNOW WHAT I MEAN! IT’S NOT LIKE YOU COULD JUST POP IN AND TROLL PLACES BACK THEN! AND NOT TO MENTION PASSWORDS AND SHIT NEEDED!

CAPSLOCKED.

Alan Robertshaw
Alan Robertshaw
6 years ago

I first used the DARPAnet as it was back then in the mid 80s. That’s when mail addresses (wasn’t called email as I recall) had exclamation marks in them. I was a grubby kid in those days and we used to sneak into the less than secure computer rooms at the local uni.

First started using home PCs in the early 90s. Dial up modems that could theoretically run at 14.4k but bulletin boards ran at between 150 and 300 baud. Didn’t notice a lot of bigotry back then, but when each letter was appearing at the rate of a slow teleprinter who had time to waste on epithets?

Pandapool -- The Species that Endangers YOU (aka Banana Jackie Cake, for those who still want to call me "Banana", "Jackie" or whatever)
Pandapool -- The Species that Endangers YOU (aka Banana Jackie Cake, for those who still want to call me "Banana", "Jackie" or whatever)
6 years ago

EXCUSE ME.

WHY WAS I NOT INFORMED THERE WAS A TRAILER FOR KINGDOM HEARTS 3.

PARADOXICAL WHY HAVE YOU FAILED ME.

Paradoxical Intention
6 years ago

Pandapool — The Species that Endangers YOU (aka Banana Jackie Cake, for those who still want to call me “Banana”, “Jackie” or whatever) | June 17, 2015 at 7:36 pm
EXCUSE ME.

WHY WAS I NOT INFORMED THERE WAS A TRAILER FOR KINGDOM HEARTS 3.

PARADOXICAL WHY HAVE YOU FAILED ME.

YOU DIDN’T TELL ME ABOUT THE NEW ANIMAL CROSSING OR ABOUT DISHONORED 2, SO WE’RE EVEN.

Pandapool -- The Species that Endangers YOU (aka Banana Jackie Cake, for those who still want to call me "Banana", "Jackie" or whatever)
Pandapool -- The Species that Endangers YOU (aka Banana Jackie Cake, for those who still want to call me "Banana", "Jackie" or whatever)
6 years ago

I DIDN’T EVEN KNOW YOU LIKED THOSE GAMES. WELL, MAYBE ANIMAL CROSSING BUT I HAVEN’T EVEN HEARD ANYTHING ABOUT THE NEW ANIMAL CROSSING YET MYSELF. I HEARD IT FROM YOU FIRST.

sparky
sparky
6 years ago

It is fucking hilarious that Keith’s counter to the mountain of evidence that the MRA is misogynist that David has collected on this blog, including from prominent leaders of the movement like Elam, is this guy he knows on Facebook. Who Keith says has said he doesn’t hate women. Who’s actual views we can’t see for ourselves but have to take Keith’s word for.

My feminist friend Katie also thinks this is hilarious, and that Keith is talking out his ass.

Rabid Rabbit
Rabid Rabbit
6 years ago

@EJ (The Other One)

Blood-soaked killers in the name of niceness, please. Holland still sends us tulips for it. Unless it’s that the Dutch are actually so terrified of us that they’re trying to buy us off. “Feed the Canadians tulips, and maybe they won’t come back.”

But yes, those of us who know still take a great deal of pride in the words of the German general who insisted that World War One would have lasted well into 1920 without the Canadians. Or, for that matter, all the German soldiers who turned extremely pale when hearing that it was the Canadians setting up across from them.

@Paradoxical Intention

Some of the calmest people in the world are actually some of the angriest, or those with the worst temper. Unlike people like Boulware and company, though, they’re aware of how dangerous they are, take steps to control it, and are *actively* calm. Not unlike those beta soldiers who don’t punch out PUAs in bars, but only because they’re aware that they’d quite literally kill the tiresome sleaze.

Paradoxical Intention
6 years ago

Panda, they’ve released another Animal Crossing game.

It’s like Mario Party, but now it’s Animal Crossing themed.

And I’m okay with this.

Pandapool -- The Species that Endangers YOU (aka Banana Jackie Cake, for those who still want to call me "Banana", "Jackie" or whatever)
Pandapool -- The Species that Endangers YOU (aka Banana Jackie Cake, for those who still want to call me "Banana", "Jackie" or whatever)
6 years ago

@Paradoxical

Sweet. I haven’t really play the games but I should.

EJ (The Other One)
EJ (The Other One)
6 years ago

Dishonored 2 is coming?

Wut.

Aaaaaagh. I am torn. On the one hand, Dishonored was totally so good oh my god you guys, and I want more of it.

On the other hand, Dishonored was good largely because it was a straight-up remake of Thief 2. This means that Dishonored 2 might be a remake of Thief 3, which would be bad. Very bad. Thief 3 belongs in the set of things which people do not speak of in polite company.

Aaagh. So torn.

Pandapool -- The Species that Endangers YOU (aka Banana Jackie Cake, for those who still want to call me "Banana", "Jackie" or whatever)
Pandapool -- The Species that Endangers YOU (aka Banana Jackie Cake, for those who still want to call me "Banana", "Jackie" or whatever)
6 years ago

@EJ

I think it has a playable kick ass woman.

Also, I’ve won 10 out of 14 Tavern Brawls in Hearthstone and I feel awesome.

Pandapool -- The Species that Endangers YOU (aka Banana Jackie Cake, for those who still want to call me "Banana", "Jackie" or whatever)
Pandapool -- The Species that Endangers YOU (aka Banana Jackie Cake, for those who still want to call me "Banana", "Jackie" or whatever)
6 years ago

Make that 11 out of 15. o3o

Keith
6 years ago

@EJ As an atheist and a scientist living in Texas, I often find myself in the opposite situation,

In this comment section, I’m the scientist surrounded by creationists accusing me of worshiping Satan, of hating gawd, having no morals, etc.. I’ve got people flat out lying, calling me a racist, woman-hater, neo-Nazi, and being in favor of all sorts of things I never said. There’s one nitwit who has been hounding me about mentioning how Muslims treat “women, gays, religious minorities, etc..” Somehow, that was morphed into me using the phrase “the gays” (which is a phrase I only use to satire anti-gay people, though it’s usually stylized as “teh gays”).

If you would like to address particular issues, feel free. Your allegories just don’t work.

EJ (The Other One)
EJ (The Other One)
6 years ago

Fuck off, Keith. Send me someone smarter and better read than yourself and I’ll talk to them. I have no time for your grade-school level of bullshit, and especially no time for your expectation that you’re going to be taken seriously.

Fuck off, and take your clown shoes and your little tricycle with you.

sparky
sparky
6 years ago

I’m mildly surprised Keith that actually showed up her again after his “this one guy I know on Facebook doesn’t hate women” routine.

The arrogance is strong with this one. He’s the embodiment of the Dunning Kruger effect.

EJ (The Other One)
EJ (The Other One)
6 years ago

@sparky: Yep. I’m not surprised, however, that he chose to respond to me rather than to anyone else.

Everyone else was nice and patient with him while I came in like an asshole and utilised the famous South African tact and diplomacy to insult him to his face. As a result he chooses to respond to me, and characterises the rest of us as liars, nitwits and creationists (though that last one was metaphor, I suspect.)

Clearly I was the only Y-chromosomed rational person here.

EJ (The Other One)
EJ (The Other One)
6 years ago

(Also, M? I love how the worst thing that he could think to call you is “nitwit.” After being horrifyingly offensive in an unintentional way, when he actually tries to be offensive he falls flat in an almost charming way. Keith’s not good at this communicating thing, is he?)

brooked
6 years ago

Listen, you actually care about important issues, the militarization of the police and police brutality. Unfortunately, you’re a Libertarian robot so instead of trying to discuss these issues, you rant endlessly about your fantastical theories about how black victims are idealized and seen as more important than white victims by the media, leftists and fuck knows who else.

You keep harping on how people shouldn’t be passionate about Michael Brown because of the facts of the case, which means you ignoring how Michael Brown lied dead on the street for hours like road kill and his shooting wouldn’t have been investigated without the protests.

I’ve been a very vocal critic of police abuse of power for nearly two decades. And, while the impact of such abuses impact minorities disproportionately, the fact is that abuse by law enforcement (and government in general) is not a racial problem.

The point is that the real struggle isn’t black vs. white, it’s blue vs. poor.

I have no idea how you convinced yourself that class is an issue and race isn’t but at this point I don’t really care. I don’t need to listen to a pompous ass bring up every right wing talking point known to man while ignoring everything anyone else says. You’ve read Radley Balko’s book. That’s great, it means you’re well informed about an issue you care about, but it doesn’t make you the infallible expert you think you are. Unfortunately Libertarian robots are often convinced they’re intellectual giants and that every single unsubstantiated claim that pops out of them is unquestionably true.

White victims don’t matter? It was police shooting involving a white victim, Michael Bell, that led to first significant legislation to address the lack of oversight in police shooting.

Race is at the forefront of the current debate over the police use of deadly force. But one shooting in Wisconsin highlights another factor at play when police shoot civilians — the lack of outside investigation. And the decade-old death has led to real reform in the state…

The law they put forth would make Wisconsin the first state in the nation to mandate, on the legislative level, that if an officer was involved with a loss of life, that outside investigators must come in and collect the data and investigate that shooting.

In Wisconsin, A Decade-Old Police Shooting Leads To New Law
http://www.npr.org/2014/12/13/370592433/in-wisconsin-a-decade-old-police-shooting-leads-to-new-law

@EJ As an atheist and a scientist living in Texas, I often find myself in the opposite situation,

In this comment section, I’m the scientist surrounded by creationists accusing me of blah, blah, blah…

If you would like to address particular issues, feel free. Your allegories just don’t work.

I don’t know what EJ’s allegories are, but your whiny one is self-pitying, over dramatic and often wrong. It’s truly a fitting end.

Drezden
Drezden
6 years ago

@EJ

Perhaps I’m assuming too much, but I’m inclined to believe that our dear friend Kieth was responding to your ‘conversation between scientists’ post when he noted that his situation was often the opposite.

In other words, he frequently jumps into the middle of theological discussions to explain why his concerns are so much more important.

Which, with slightly different context, is exactly what he’s doing here.

Of course, this raises a further question. I can’t imagine those previous “conversations” have had much in the way of positive results. A scientist (or almost anyone, really) should have taken note of this by now and modified their inputs. Why then has good sir Kieth failed to make the necessary adjustments?

EJ (The Other One)
EJ (The Other One)
6 years ago

@Drezden:

I rather suspect that he has not made the necessary adjustments because to him, the method is not broken. It allows him to feel superior to a large number of people and insult them on a whim, thus feeling powerful. If the method were actually effective at converting people, it would eventually exhaust his supply of people to feel superior to. By alienating people and converting nobody, he faces no such risks.

It’s the rational thing to do.

weirwoodtreehugger
6 years ago

If you would like to address particular issues, feel free.

What would be the point? We did address issues and you didn’t respond back.

Scented Fucking Hard Chairs
Scented Fucking Hard Chairs
6 years ago

There’s one nitwit who has been hounding me about mentioning how Muslims treat “women, gays, religious minorities, etc..” Somehow, that was morphed into me using the phrase “the gays” (which is a phrase I only use to satire anti-gay people, though it’s usually stylized as “teh gays”).

http://i.imgur.com/iWKad22.jpg

Buttercup Q. Skullpants
Buttercup Q. Skullpants
6 years ago

@EJ But isn’t pulling the age card and condescending to the youngsters part of the scientific method? I mean…

I disagree with people who think Kurt Cobain was a great musician (ask your parents about him)

…he’s heard of Kurt Cobain! Whereas the rest of us have to ask our parents about him.

And he’s been fighting bigots on the internet since…well, that’s actually a good question, because I was on Usenet in the mid-80s (hey Keith, ask your great-grandparents about the 1980s) and don’t remember any bigots on there. It was all academics and techies. Chatroom discussion was pretty tame. It mostly revolved around Unix, movies, games, and ASCII card swapping. Eternal September started only 22 years ago, and it took awhile after that for the racists and reactionaries to come online (reactionaries being what they are).

Oh, and he knows that one Facebook guy, too! I mean, the MRM is a 1000-gallon barrel of turd stew (as evidenced by the hundreds and hundreds of direct quotes and articles cited on this blog, all of them vile to varying degrees), but Keith has disproven it by being all “no look! there’s a piece of carrot”.

Clearly we’re in the presence of a rigorous scientific mind here.

Also, is anyone else getting a whiff of sealion?

In this comment section, I’m the scientist surrounded by creationists accusing me of worshiping Satan, of hating gawd, having no morals, etc.

“I have been nothing but polite in my insulting condescension, and I get met with derision.”

EJ (The Other One)
EJ (The Other One)
6 years ago

Buttercup Q. Skullpants, I knew there was a reason why you were my hero. Now all is clear.

weirwoodtreehugger
6 years ago

A lot of youngsters do know Nirvana
https://youtu.be/DGPbHUZQ-VE

katz
katz
6 years ago

…he’s heard of Kurt Cobain! Whereas the rest of us have to ask our parents about him.

Oh man, didn’t we have another troll who recommended we check out really well known bands, like the Rolling Stones or something? I don’t remember exactly.

Keith
6 years ago

@Buttercup Q. Skullpants “I was on Usenet in the mid-80s (hey Keith, ask your great-grandparents about the 1980s) and don’t remember any bigots on there. It was all academics and techies. Chatroom discussion was pretty tame. It mostly revolved around Unix, movies, games, and ASCII card swapping.”

Usenet political groups go way back. Just because you only hung out in tech groups doesn’t mean everyone else did, as well.

The earliest I remember encountering real life bigots was during the Reagan administration, I posted many responses lampooning a rabid anti-semite who was making the transition from a shortwave radio program to Usenet.

I also read the Unix, aviation, and sci fi groups, which had very few flame wars, at least until emacs fanatics arose.

isidore13
isidore13
6 years ago

Keith, even if we take you at your word, does your past make you totally immune to being racist/sexist/homophobic forever and always? Is that what you are saying?

Scented Fucking Hard Chairs
Scented Fucking Hard Chairs
6 years ago

Look, dicksack. If importance was decided by age, any of the 60-year-old regulars would be above you. If it was decided by Usenet usage, any of the 40-year-old regulars would be above you. If it was decided by how important they were to the evolution of the Internet as we know it, I would be above you.

But it’s not. It’s fucking irrelevant. Because importance on this blog, who’s right vs who’s wrong, is not a Goddamn meritocracy. It’s a who’s-not-a-racist-sexist-shitmonger-of-a-troll-ocracy. Which means we’re all above you.

Scented Fucking Hard Chairs
Scented Fucking Hard Chairs
6 years ago

*Many of the 40-year-old regulars. I don’t know if they all used it. =P

Bernardo Soares
Bernardo Soares
6 years ago

“Mongol General: Hao! Dai ye! We won again! This is good. But what is best in life?

Mongol: The open steppe, fleet horse, falcons at your wrist, and the wind in your hair.

Mongol General: Wrong! Keith! What is best in life?

Keith: Lampooning this one anti-semite on Usenet before the stupid feminists on that one forum I troll were even born. Listening to Nirvana. Knowing One Guy on Facebook who totally doesn’t hate women, I swear.

Mongol General: That is good! That is good.”

Buttercup Q. Skullpants
Buttercup Q. Skullpants
6 years ago

@Keith – Well, I remember encountering bigots in the “letters to the editor” section of the local paper (the precursor to ARPANET) when the busing riots erupted in Boston back in the mid-70s. Yep. *squints* Me and bigots go way back.

I don’t even remember what the point of this “I’m older than you” contest is. It’s a game we all eventually “win” (or don’t), and it’s a weak version of argument from authority.

However, I think it’s fair to note that trolls now are nothing like what trolls were then. 30 years ago, trolls were generally harmless – bored college kids looking to disrupt individual threads and get attention. Fast forward three decades, and now trolls are vicious, organized, and spill over into real life. Internet 2.0 allowed racism to move out into the open and have a platform to spew hatred to audiences ranging from a few dozen friends to millions. The techniques are more sophisticated (having been refined by the likes of Karl Rove, Duane Gish et. al.) and it’s ubiquitous, even on neutral sites like imdb. You simply can’t avoid racist jerks like you could with Usenet. On the flip side, thanks to Google, trolls can’t get away with lazy unsupported assertions and assfax anymore. They may try, but it doesn’t work for long.

Kids today (I use that term loosely to mean anybody under 30) are debate-savvier, net-savvier, and better informed than kids of 30 years ago, so I don’t think experience arguing with Usenet bigots actually gives you that much of a head start. It’s like saying you learned to ski jump back when everyone used parallel technique, so your two decades of experience should give you a leg up on all the modern kids who are using the V style.

weirwoodtreehugger
6 years ago

After recent events, I have zero patience for Keith or any other tool shed who thinks white men have it just as bad as everyone else or that nobody cares about the lives of white men. I am in no mood for white and/or male tears today.

Scented Fucking Hard Chairs
Scented Fucking Hard Chairs
6 years ago

… That’s a good point. Keith, seeing the first article listed on the page but still coming back to keep pushing your bullshit narrative, because hey, your e-honour is clearly so much more important than respect for a few black and/or female lives? That proves that you are racist and sexist.

EJ (The Other One)
EJ (The Other One)
6 years ago

@weirwoodtreehugger: Does that mean we should put away the Male Tears mugs?

Paradoxical Intention
6 years ago

EJ (The Other One) | June 18, 2015 at 4:57 am
(Also, M? I love how the worst thing that he could think to call you is “nitwit.” After being horrifyingly offensive in an unintentional way, when he actually tries to be offensive he falls flat in an almost charming way. Keith’s not good at this communicating thing, is he?)

I’m pretty sure he was referring to me after I told him (twice. This would make it a third time.) not to refer to queer people as “the gays”, and I’ve had two posts discussing with him how burquas, hijabs, and other religious clothing isn’t inherently misogynistic because of his Great White Savior complex.

But hey, whatever helps that shitweasel sleep at night.

Scented Fucking Hard Chairs
Scented Fucking Hard Chairs
6 years ago

Yeah, I think he’s just ignoring me outright. Seems to happen a lot. Probably because of the really obvious “Female gamer, every MRA’s worst nightmare” avatar.

EJ (The Other One)
EJ (The Other One)
6 years ago

@Paradoxical: Ooops. My misreading. Apologies. Can we use “nitwit” as a fond affectionate term, then?