Black People : Dysfunctional Generalizations: The epitome of Anti-Intellectual Behavior

Discussion in 'Black People Open Forum' started by skuderjaymes, Oct 27, 2011.

  1. skuderjaymes

    skuderjaymes Contextualizer Synthesizer MEMBER

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    this was originally a response in the "Do Most Men Cheat" thread but these are ideas I had intended to express in an independent thread also.. so, here they are..

    one would think that a set of technologies, such that we have access to here, that enables us to be directly connected to one another in such unprecedented ways would result in more sharing of the specific experiences and conclusions of individual lives.. but one would be as mistaken as a pig that thought he wasn't bacon.

    the question, "do most men cheat", not only solicits an untruth from anyone that considers the question, it also plants a conceptual seed that such sweepingly general concepts and their nice and tidy conclusions actually exist in real life.. and that implied existence can lead to a "hunt and peck" style of intellectual discourse reminiscent of a 7 year old child digging through his cereal bowl for the raisins in his raisin bran while ignoring the nutrition contained in the bran itself..

    Its my opinion that folks become addicted to these nice and tidy generalizations and they simply stop thinking altogether.. and after many years of this kind of thinking it becomes nearly impossible to shift to more labor-intensive modes of analysis. The sheer number of variables that exist in real life situations require far more analytical processing power than the dramatically narrowed-down number of variables contained in very general modes of analysis.. The Either / Or mode of analysis comes to mind.. where the world suddenly becomes flat again.. and everything is either Yes or No.. Good or Bad.. Black or White.. that mode is dramatically easier to operate in.. it hardly requires any effort at all.. simply close your eyes and point.. or flip a coin.. In other words, it encourages an intellectually lazy approach to ideas, problems and solutions.. it promotes overly simplistic modes of analysis and results in overly simplistic outlooks which result in overly-simplistic modes of being.. and these simple modes of being leave us susceptible to direct and indirect manipulation and control by outside forces banking on our confusion.

    General conclusions that are the result of the analyzing sets of specific information are what I call "functional generalizations".. meaning they can be proven by consulting the data sets.. and because they can be proven, they are functional.. useful.. An example would be: you interviewed every couple on a city block and found that every single man on that block had stepped-out on his woman.. you could then conclude that all men on that block have cheated on their wives.. that would be a "functional.. true.. generalization".. and it could be backed up with data.. Most Men Cheat, is a dysfunctional generalization because it is physically impossible to collect data from "most men".. and that also means its impossible to prove.. OR disprove.. and that makes it dysfunctional.. meaning it has no functional use.. it is neither true nor false.. and posed as an either-or question it solicits untruth.. because neither answer can be true.

    "Africans are not fully human", "Black people are lazy".. "Black people are inferior"..

    Black folks have been subject to these kind of weaponized generalizations for our entire history here in America.. and when something is done to you long enough and well enough you begin to do it to yourself and others.. its the reason why the abused become abusers.. why victims become victimizers.. and so its no wonder that so much of African american discourse involves so many gross generalizations.. gross generalizations that are then taken in as facts and that ultimately lead to mis-calibrated and mistaken conclusions. And when those dysfunctional generalizations are applied, say.. to interpersonal relationships.. for example.. where a young lady might be trying to figure out why her men friends always leave her for greener pastures.. by reaching for dysfunctionally general conclusions like, All Men Cheat, she might miss the opportunity to discover that she has a abrasive disposition.. or a dirty house.. or a uncooperative outlook.. By applying that dysfunctional generalization to her own life, she misses the opportunity to learn from her life experiences.. and its for that reason that I consider dysfunctional generalizations to be the epitome of anti-intellectual behavior.. They block learning by confusing context.. So it doesn't matter how sophisticated your analytical equipment is.. garbage in, garbage out.. you can't make cake out of $hit.. well, you can.. but you can't expect it not to be $hitty..

    And I said all of that to say this: Stop Generalizing everything.. it's intellectual masturbation.. and moves you/us neither forward nor back.. just side to side.. to no avail..
     
  2. Ankhur

    Ankhur Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    Discernment means understanding the difference between real statistics, jive statistics and painting something with a broadbrush
     
  3. Ankhur

    Ankhur Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    From my own personal observations of working among
    200 Black men and women for 7 years white collar civil service, and 400 Black men and women blue collar civil service for 15 years, not only do most NOT ALL! men cheat and find it faggish for us Chrstians to turn down married women, but most women cheat as well
     
  4. skuderjaymes

    skuderjaymes Contextualizer Synthesizer MEMBER

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    Perhaps you should post this in the thread where it is relevant.. And Allow this thread to stay focused and on track. Respect is the name of the game..
     
  5. cherryblossom

    cherryblossom Banned MEMBER

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    'There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics." - Mark Twain
     
  6. legit-writer

    legit-writer Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    wow hadn't i known that it would cause this much attention to where a thread has to be directed towards people and told its dysfunctional, i wouldn't have posed the question.. oh wait a minute, yes i would. im glad you wasted your time writing about folks you feel has dysfunctional generalizations. it shows you have us in mind. thanks buddy
     
  7. skuderjaymes

    skuderjaymes Contextualizer Synthesizer MEMBER

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    Do you actually believe these ideas were developed because of your thread? I had been speaking on generalizations for quite some time before I ever knew you existed. It's a serious shame that you have decided to take tackling of this concept as some sort of slight against you.. It really has nothing to do with you. It has to do with language and discourse.. Topics that I have a deep interest in and often speak about. You really should get over yourself and learn the difference between dialogue and debate.. And between conflict and community. I'm here to share ideas and engage in intelligent conversation with my folks.. Not to argue with you about nonsense. Respect is the name of the game., I came at you correctly in your thread.. I would appreciate the same here, so if you have something to say about the subject of generalizations I'd like to hear it, otherwise I'd appreciate it if you allowed this thread to stay on track.

    Peace.
     
  8. legit-writer

    legit-writer Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    oh its on track and no debate here. i jut don't understand why you consider the question i posed as dysfunctional, when it's a real question. and whatever other questions you consider to be dysfunctional, imagine how they feel, they are most likely curious just like I am. So in terms of staying on track, why was my question one of the dysfunctional ones in your eyes?
     
  9. skuderjaymes

    skuderjaymes Contextualizer Synthesizer MEMBER

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    I think you are misunderstanding what I mean by dysfunctional.. many people have similar reactions to the word ignorant... which just means not knowing something.. their are many many parts of the english language that lend themselves to dysfunction.. to indicate those parts of speech or ways of speaking is not to insult the people that use them.. And its not to say that I don't also use them from time to time.. context is everything.. The english language is deceptive and abstract.. and it takes some effort to be clear.. I don't believe it is an insult to highlight examples of that on this board..

    So, Why do I consider your question to be dysfunctional? To be clear, I consider the FORM of your question to be dysfunctional.. not the intent of the question.. I understand the intent to be a general survey of how people feel about the interpersonal integrity of black men as it pertains to relationships with women.. I get that.. I'm not calling you dysfunctional.. my criticism is about Language and usage.. Language that you used but you do not own.. you are not the first to use this kind of phraseology.. it's very common because it is conversationally expedient.. in my longer-winded response I noted that the way the question was asked lends itself to a specific kind of ambiguity that I personally recognize as a serious impediment to clarity.. which I regard as paramount when it comes to understanding each other and communing.. and getting to the meat of these things that we come together to discuss..

    I apologize if my focus on my point came across as some sort of insult to you or anyone else.. that wasn't my intention.

    -peace
     
  10. Destee

    Destee destee.com STAFF

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    Brother Skuder ... great presentation ... thanks for sharing it! :toast:

    Questions / challenges came to mind, but by the time i was finished, they were answered / gone.

    Very Good! :)

    I agree, and am acutely aware and patient regarding the reality that we're not all at the same place.

    This factor will always be present, challenging us to deal with it efficiently, effectively, etc.

    The cliche ... the only bad question is the one that isn't asked ... has some validity.

    Even if not asked exactly proper, the opportunity is there to teach, explore, grow, by broaching it

    Which is exactly what you're doing! :toast:

    Some reading will understand your point, apply as needed, and over the head it will go for others.

    I've often said, we never know who's reading us, who gets us, who grows from what we share here.

    As dysfunctional as some threads / discussions are, they may be exactly what another needs.

    No, not you ... maybe not me ... but someone.

    It may be the piece they need to get to where you are, albeit an unorthodox route, it could be one.

    That's why all respectful dialogue is welcome, allowing the levels of discussion to be as diverse as us.

    Great thread! Thanks for taking the time to share it.

    Love You!

    :heart:

    Destee
     
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