This is more of a personal statement than one regarding political news or activism, so please don’t recommend.
The title of this diary is to a certain extent self-explanatory. That said, I’d like to elaborate. Perhaps in the process one might get an idea of why I might be drawn to this particular blog, at least for the time being.
Although I understand why some would desire mainstream respectability, I realized fairly early on in life that it wasn’t for me. My last experiment with respectability occurred when I was 15, and fairly quickly I realized that it was a mistake. Instead, I ended up something of a retro hippie in the early 1980s, and later a punk. While my peers were more interested in top-40 pop and tv, I was interested in philosophy. I stumbled upon pacifism in my teens, roughly about the time I stumbled on to anarchism. Although I don’t currently characterize myself as an anarchist, I find that much about anarchist philosophies attractive. Perhaps I will expand on that another time.
I am an academician who comes from families who until a generation ago sacrificed attaining high school educations to work on America’s farms or in America’s factories. Hence, I don’t quite come across like a lot of your mainstream college professors. Heck, I’m convinced that I pretty much got where I did by defying a lot of underestimation.
Although as an anglo male, I realize I am embedded in a certain set of assumptions situated in a historical and cultural framework, I’ve tried as best I can to see beyond that framework and explore other frameworks. In the process, I’ve come to gain an appreciation for what America’s indigenous peoples have to offer and what they’ve been through; what Zionism means to Palestinians; etc. I may not be able to see the world as others who are embedded in different backgrounds might, but I’ll come as close as I can. If you get the idea that I appreciate Enlightenment-era values and assumptions while at the same time appreciating the limitations of those assumptions and values, you are correct.
All of the above is hardly a recipe for producing someone who holds mainstream liberal ideas or opinions. Hence, I don’t easily fit in among those who have spent their lives thoroughly enmeshed in the mainstream.
I dwell in the shadows, in the margins of political life. I am not respectable enough to be one of life’s insiders, “front-pagers”, or movers and shakers. Nor do I really care to be. Rather, I will simply assert that I have a voice and that it will be heard.