Category Philosophy

Making Sense of ‘Privilege’.

CRT’s illiberalism is unpalatable, and it appears to be rather dogmatic. Any critique is just a symptom of privilege-blindness made only by those who “don’t get it” betraying their biases. “Listen to the [minority]!”, we are told, as if the voices of all members of that minority are in perfect synchronisation with each other. What is really meant by this is that we should listen only to those who agree with CRT (and similar belief systems), and whatever we are told by them we should accept without question (including normative statements and moral pronouncements which require philosophical inquiry in addition to the empirical data we are too biased to observe for ourselves).

When is Intent ‘Magic’?

Justin Vacula has written about blame and intent in a recent post titled “Blame and Intent”. His purpose is primarily to argue against the claim that “intent is not magic”, the meaning of which is, according to him:

that the feelings and beliefs of a person who is a recipient of a message, rather than the intent of the individual, takes priority.

I gave this phrase a quick google (as I don’t recall ever seeing it in any philosophical literature) and it appears to have it’s origin in 2010 in post called “Intent! It’s Fucking Magic!” on a blog called “Genderbitch: Musings of a Trans Chick”. As fascinating as the blog sounds, rather than argue specifically against it I’ll use it to spark some thoughts about the role of intent in meaning, and argue that while intent is not magic (and as far as I can tell, nobody is claiming that it is), at least according to one plausible theory it is an important part of the analysis of meaning.

A Civil Response to Dan Fincke

I want to respond to Dan Fincke’s Civility Pledge, as I won’t be signing it. That’s a shame, I think, because I believe civility to be an indispensable component of a productive discussion.