June 15, 2016

I am not a sinner I am just a primate trying to survive

by eirenehogan

In honour of all the poor people killed in Orlando, and also for the poor guy who was so mixed up, misguided and hung up that he felt he needed to do it, I want to post this meme I found on Facebook.

This clarifies and simplifies the meaning of life beautifully, and makes transparent all the ridiculous guilt religion tries to lay on us, which causes so much unnecessary pain and agony in our lives.

i am just a primate

May 23, 2016

If you are using California data to claim an autism epidemic, you’re doing it wrong. Or:The great anti-epidemic of intellectual disability in California.

by eirenehogan

This is an excellent post about the so-called ‘autism epidemic’ and how the increase in autism numbers is probably due to an equivalent decrease in the numbers of intellectually disabled (ID), ie, those formerly diagnosed as ID are now diagnosed as autistic. As the understanding of these conditions increases then the various conditions which cause an ‘intellectual disability’ is being teased out, hence the ID diagnosis will decrease but the other conditions will increase. In reality it is still the same number of people, they are just put into different criteria.

Left Brain Right Brain

If you’ve been reading about autism online, you have almost certainly read that autism “rates” are on the rise. But what if I told you that here in California intellectual disability has been dropping for over 20 years?

For many years the mainstay of the “autism is an epidemic” idea was the California Department of Developmental Services data. The CDDS keeps track of how many Californians are getting support under a number of specific disability categories. These data are publicly available (although not as easily available in the past), which makes them an easy source of data.

It’s easy to take a cursory look at the CDDS data and think “these are official data. Look at how much autism has increased!” Or claim “the CDDS only serves “severe” autism, there’s no way they were missed in the past.” You can even find a few publications to cite to back up…

View original post 687 more words

May 2, 2016

Origins of the term ‘Easter’ are ANGLO-SAXON!!!

by eirenehogan

AAAGGGHHH!!!!  There are all these memes circulating the internet claiming the Ancient Near Eastern Goddess Ishtar is the origin of the name of Easter.

The theory seems to be based on the fact that the name sounds similar.  WHAT???  You can’t base etymology on that.  That is like saying, ‘the sun comes up every day, so, um, how does it get there?, well, it looks like someone must put it there, so, um, a god must put it there.’

Easter is NOT named after the Babylonian goddess Ishtar. Ishtar, as the great Goddess of Babylon, is an Akkadian name, and as such is SEMITIC.  The term ‘Easter’ is of Germanic origin.  It is an old Anglo-Saxon name.  And – despite some politicians foolishly believing English is derived from Latin (ie, Christopher Pain — oops I mean, Payne), Anglo-Saxon is a proud member of the Germanic language family.

Bede

The name is Easter is the English term for the Christian.  The Romans called it Pascha.  The Anglo-Saxons had a goddess named Eostre.  She was the goddess of spring and the month of the spring, most probably at the time of the spring equinox, was named after her, as was explained by Bede in his book ‘On the Reckoning of Time’.

That name, Eostre, has come down through Middle English and into Modern English, as ‘Easter’.

I would doubt very much that any Anglo-Saxons knew anything of Ishtar.

Jeez, do a bit of research!  In face, all you need to do is check Wikipedia. See the entry Names of Easter.


 

April 26, 2016

Politically Incorrect language

by eirenehogan

On the theme of ‘political correctness’.  I think from now on we should not say to people, ‘please use politically correct language’, we should go back to the meaning of what PC language is and say, ‘please do not use sexist, racist, classist, homophobic, language.’  Those who are in control of society, who have never been on the receiving end of prejudicial language, have taken control of the term and trashed it.  By getting control of it themselves, they have managed to demean it and make it seem a negative, instead of a positive.  Those who are victims of prejudicial language can no longer request that people use politically correct language, because they will be immediately vilified.

 

So – I intend to use politically incorrect language to describe those very types who vilify the term.  According to them, I have every right to do so.  Here is an example:

 

I was reading an article from someone the other day, the writer was male, professional, white, heterosexual.  He was a stuck up, selfish, white trash prick, whose brains is in his dick and who sees women as sex toys and nothing else.  Oh, please don’t tell me he was offended by my statements, no offence was intended, it was just humour, and it is the language I am used to using, so I believe I should be allowed to use it.   Poncey git.

April 17, 2016

Why political correctness is CORRECT

by eirenehogan

This is a comment to an article about Stephen Fry, on International Business Times, ‘Stephen Fry is right about our infantilised outrage culture’, By , April 13, 2016.

You can find it here, that is if you can wait long enough for it to download.  I tired to add the comment on the page but it just wouldn’t download enough for me to do so.  Conspiracy?


 

This is yet again an older generation complaining about political correctness.  What is a person saying when they say they do not want to use politically correct language?  They are saying, ‘I want to offend people.’

 

He is now a member of the ‘older generation’ who is not adapting to the changes in society, and see those changes as a negative and destroying of society.  Yes, it is destroying the society that Stephen Fry grew up in, but it isn’t destroying society as a whole, it is merely evolving.  He is complaining that he cannot use the same language he used to use, and is blaming ‘the others’ for the change in language.  He wants to still use that language and refuses to open his mind to the ways in which that language is – and most likely always has been – offensive to others.  He talks about how he should be allowed freedom of speech, meaning he should be allowed to offend someone and it is their fault if they are offended, not his.

 

He claims, due to ‘freedom of speech’ he should be allowed to express these opinions that perhaps offend people.  Certainly Mr Fry, you are allowed to express those opinions, but the reverse of that is that people are allowed to be offended by them and are allowed to complain about you saying them.  You cannot claim a right to say them under ‘freedom of speech’ then deny the right of others to complain about them.

 

This is such a common complaint by people who are not among the class of people who have had to deal with the negative abusive language, or behaviour; who cannot see how it is offensive, and therefore claim their right – as a member of society that has not experienced the offence – to use it.  It has occurred throughout history, as society changes.  We no longer live in a society controlled politically by a small group of the privileged class.  We are a democracy and that means society is finally allowed to speak up and say that there are groups in society who have always found such language and behaviours offensive and no longer want to put up with those groups in the society who think they are allowed to say what is allowed and what is offensive and what is freedom of speech.  It is not up to the ‘others’ to say ‘you should not be offended by this language’, it is up to those who are the ones who feel offended to say if it is offensive or not.

 

This is ironic coming from someone who is gay and has defended gay rights.  Let us go back to the pre-70s when it was fine to call someone a poof or faggott.  ‘Hey, I didn’t mean to be offensive, it’s just a common phrase, I wasn’t accusing you directly.  Wow, man, that’s your problem if you find that language offensive, not mine.’

 

Would Mr Fry agree to that?

 


 

April 3, 2016

WHAT IS IT WITH GRAMMAR NAZIS?

by eirenehogan

Are Grammar Nazis insecure lonely people who feel unloved, so are using their antiquated knowledge of primary school grammar to make themselves feel more important?

 

Where does language come from?  Does it come from grammar books and dictionaries?  Did God send down an English grammar and English dictionary?

 

Has English always been spelt the same way, and have English sentences always been constructed the same way?

 

No.

 

Language is a tool used by humans to communicate to each other.  Successful communication occurs when two people can understand each other.  What words are used, how ‘grammatically correct’ they are or whether they are to be found in dictionaries do no matter, if the two people understand each other, that is communication and that is language.

 

The basis of language is verbal communication and that is the most current and up-to-date.  Written language is a description of verbal language and is often a more out-dated version of spoken language.  Changes in language tend to occur in the spoken language first, and then filter down to written language.  In this modern era of internet and mobile phones and texting that is changing, as now there are many written innovations that occur in the online world before being copied by spoken.

 

Grammars and dictionaries are merely descriptions of the language.  They are always out of date as the language practises needs to be established and studied before they can be recorded.

 

Grammars and dictionaries do not prescribe how a language is written, let alone spoken, they merely describe it.  The language does not belong to the grammar books or dictionaries, and does not belong to the grammar teachers – or websites.  The language belongs to the people who use it.

 

Language changes and evolves over time, and it is through that verbal communication that it does.  Over time dialects will develop and ultimately new languages, and the grammars and dictionaries will reflect that.

 

The formal rules of written language describe a certain type of usage which is in effect its own dialect.  People learn the spoken dialect of their region and their generation, but then also need to learn the written dialect of their language.

 

It is certainly useful for people to write and spell in a similar way, but to criticise people for not getting their written grammar correct (the written dialect) is ignoring the content of what the person is trying to say.  Which is more important?  And English spelling is so mixed up and messed up, so full of antiquated spellings that no longer reflect the pronunciation of the word, that it is more the fault of the language than the speller, if someone cannot spell it.

 

 

February 19, 2016

Why ‘I was only joking,’ isn’t good enough

by eirenehogan

‘I was only joking.’  Is that an acceptable explanation for an offensive prejudicial jibe at someone?i was only joking

 

Presumably you say it because you feel upset that the other person thinks you are a bigot and you feel you aren’t.  But instead of examining your own language and ideas, trying to understand their perspective, and learning something from the incident, you reject their comments and views and emotions.

 

You think your feelings are more important than theirs.  You then tell them how they should feel, that they should not be upset and that you should be allowed to say offensive things to them.

 

You are acting like you are the one in control and you are controlling the other’s actions, feelings and thoughts.  You are acting like a bigot.

 

Instead you should listen to the other person, realise you made a mistake in saying the comment. Yu should try and see it from their point of view. Even if you felt it was a joke, they did not.  If any joke upsets someone, then they are fully entitled to feeling that emotion.  If any comment upsets someone, then there must be something in that comment that is upsetting, whether you had intended it to be or not.

 

You are the one who has made the mistake.  You should acknowledge your mistake and apologise.  If you feel you are not a bigot, then do not say things that others may interpret as prejudicial.

January 12, 2016

My journey with David Bowie

by eirenehogan

I was about 13 years old, in 2nd form at high school.  I lived in a small town lost in the ziggy_stardustmiddle of NSW, Australia, lost in the early 70s.  I’d spent some time listening to the Best of the Bee Gees and some Johnny Farnham.  I could remember back to 1970 and the Beatles breaking up.  I sort of knew it was the end of an era.  I had enjoyed Elton John’s Crocodile Rock, but didn’t get inspired by a stubby balding bespeckled piano player.

 

Then my best friend told me about an intriguing song called ‘Space Oddity’.  It was a re-release apparently, of a song from 1969 or 70, back in the walking on the moon era.  Apparently the same guy had a song sitting low on the Australian charts, called ‘Starman’.

 

I was also buying American teenage magazines, full of pictures of David Cassidy and Donny Osmond.  Boring!  A small black and white photo with a paragraph or two spoke of this David Bowie and his Starman.

 

So what the heck, I gave him a try.  Bought ‘Space Oddity’, and ‘Starman’.  50c for a single.  I really liked the ‘Starman’ song.  You would be lucky if you ever heard that on a radio station in country NSW in 1973.  And there was no such thing as ‘Countdown’.

 

I then branched out and spent my pocket money on the album that ‘Starman’ came from.  Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars.  It was like stepping into a parallel universe.  Another world opened up to me that I have never escaped from. I became a total Ziggy and David Bowie fanatic.  I lived and breathed him.

 

By the time he had finished with his Ziggy era and moved on to Berlin and Heroes, I had branched out to many other artists.  I didn’t ever really take up the music from his later personas, (although I think ‘Heroes’ is one of the greatest songs ever) but I will always cherish my teen years with my David Bowie and Ziggy Stardust obsession.

 

And the result of it?  I not only developed a love of good quality rock music, and a love of creativity, but an awareness of gay liberation and transgender issues.  Sure, it was the era, but David Bowie certainly opened up the doors to an awareness that gender and sexuality can be very fluid, and with that comes a wider understanding that people do not fit into preconceived little boxes according to the narrow views promoted by our commercial world.  People are varied and have a great variety of needs and desires that often take a lot of exploration to understand.

 

Thank you David Bowie for all you have given me.

November 2, 2015

How radicalization happens.

by eirenehogan

IN REGARDS TO THE SO-CALLED ‘RADICALIZATION’ OF YOUTH IN AUSTRALIA

When a new culture comes into a land, those of the old culture feel uncomfortable, because this new culture is strange and different to their own.  They feel fear.  That fear turns into hatred.

The obvious current example is the fear of those of Islamic religion.

By expressing that hatred and anger at Islamic people (or any minority group) you make them feel unwanted in our country and that they are not allowed to be part of our country and our culture.  They are then forced to live only within their own culture.

They also feel fear, from your unwelcoming attitude, and they resort to finding solace within their own culture – because that is the only one you are allowing them to be part of – to help deal with that fear.

In time this fear can also turn to anger and will be expressed against those who have not welcomed them into this country.  And that leads to “radicalisation”, and racial violence against you; the very thing you feared in the first place.

The irony is, if you show acceptance and interest in their culture, then they will feel accepted in our country, be peaceful and nice, and are more likely to adapt to our culture.

October 31, 2015

EARLY MENTION OF HALLOWEEN CELEBRATIONS IN AUSTRALIA – 1858.

by eirenehogan

Is Halloween ‘Un-Australian’?

My son reminded me recently that it is Halloween soon (yes, it is today).  He doesn’t want the trick or treating or the scary monster stuff, he just enjoys have a little celebration to mark Spring and that school will be over soon and Xmas and the long summer holidays will be coming.  We don’t have any formal spring celebration here (since Easter is the true ‘spring’ celebration, but for us it is in autumn).  So Halloween is a good one for it.

halloween 1858 vic

So many of the older generation seem to begrudge our kids – and young adults – the right to enjoy Halloween.  They are just showing their age.  We didn’t have it, so why should our kids have it?  Huh?  Why not?  Our younger generation have been doing it since at least the early 2000s, probably since the 1990s.  So they have grown up doing it, so for them it is now part of their everyday way of life in this country, ie, it IS Australian for them.

They aren’t doing it because of all the advertising in the shops, they are doing it most likely because of our modern global village world and with the internet they see so much of it that they want to do it too.  And why can’t they?  The only reason ever given is, ‘because it is American.’  Huh?  What sort of reason is that?  Sounds like prejudice to me.  Oh, it’s American = bad.  Funny how it is prejudice if you criticize any other culture, but they seem to think it isn’t prejudice when you criticise something because “it is American”.

‘Because it is not part of Australian culture.’  Oh, you mean it is not of Aboriginal heritage?  I doubt that is what the mean.  They mean because it didn’t come over with the first fleet.  To begin with, cultures are constantly evolving. I mean, if we didn’t allow cultures to evolve we’d all be living in the caves.  Hey, we don’t wear crinolines any more either and women have the vote, I mean, come on…

And as for it not coming over with the first fleet … well, don’t know about that.  It is an old Scottish tradition so would have come over here with any Scots, and there are mentions of it in colonial newspapers.  Here is an example of an early Halloween celebration held in Victoria – in Mount Alexander Mail, on 22 October 1858.

(source TROVE: http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article199051715)

As I said, Halloween is an old Scottish tradition (how did it get to American? It isn’t an American Native tradition) and it is based on an old pagan Celtic tradition – Samhain.

But even apart from all that – why can’t we celebrate it in Australia? Huh? If we want to we can. That doesn’t mean we HAVE to if we don’t want to, it just means, if people think it is fun, why not go for it?

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