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Jumping to Judgment Ranting

Snap judgments, false assumptions, and lay psychoanalysis. I really, really get sick of this shit.

Now, before you say "But you make judgments...", realize I'm talking about snap judgments, usually made with little or no information, based on a third party's slanted retelling of a situation. This kind of shit is what the radical religious right encourages, decision and judgment by highly spun sound bite.

The fact that people here on the net fall prey to the same thing is disappointing. For crying out loud, you are the people who are aware of how to turn on a computer, and that there is no "any" key.

In many different discussion groups, fora, and web pages, have I seen the following argument tactic used:

Person A. "I don't agree with you, and this is why."
Person B. "You obviously have a personal/mental problem. I suggest X type of counseling."

Am I alone in being enraged at this implication of "If you disagree with me you are mentally/psychologically/morally defective"??? What sort of rational argument on a basis of ideas is that?? Furthermore, these wannabe pop-psychologists then go elsewhere and spread their judgment and psychoanalysis to other places, and don't even have the integrity to even quote or cite the original dispute.

Now, if a person has a real problem, saying (perhaps privately) that they might want to seek professional help is fine, but it is not a fucking argument technique!! (Read my entire rant on the pop-psychology argument method.

You don't go around saying "$Foo thinks he's a lycanthrope, he really is psychotic and delusional and needs to be institutionalized." if you disagree with a person talking about shamanic transformation into spirit forms. You don't dismiss someone's argument merely because it's stated forcefully with "Oh, you just have anger issues. Get counseling."

All of these things involve snap judgments, an unwillingness to listen, and a whole lot of bogus assumptions, the biggest of which is that the offender is qualified to make psychiatric diagnoses based on a brief, typed, conversation on the net with a person they have never even met!!

If you're going to make assumptions and judgments about $Foo, based on what $Bar says that $Foo said (or "meant"), you deserve to be whacked by a clue stick. In legal terms, that's hearsay, and is not a basis to make legal judgment on.

If you have noticed a pattern, in separate, unrelated incidents, of behavior that is odd or suspect, that's fine. Then you're making an assessment and rational judgment on the best facts that you can gather. If you remember to cross check your facts and reality check your perceptions, you end up with a lot less jumping to conclusions.

Everyone has days when they can't express themselves well, but if it's chronic and consistent they might actually mean what they say. Sort of like "once is chance, twice is coincidence, three times is enemy action" - if the issue happens with other people at other times, it's probably them. (If it happens with you with multiple people, you might do well to ask yourself why.)

Yes, I'm rambling, but I really get sick of people slinging judgmental psychobabble labels at people they don't even know, based on some other idiot's whining about "persecution" when they have a long track record of being an asshole and they've been called on it.

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flamespirit
Feb. 13th, 2007 08:33 pm (UTC)
I agree with you on this. Except for the fact that I don't really take to heart what these 'caring' individuals might say to me. Rather, I see it for what it is. An attack. Of course not everyone will see this and might take it to heart. And that is the outrageous part to me. As you say in your full rant, it shows very little respect for those who truly need counselling.
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