Re: DSM: cigarettes and sex
Thu, 27 Apr 2000 21:55:04 EDT


I don't think it is quite the way you put it. That is, it is not that the
discomfort principle is used in one area and not in others. If someone
seemed effeminate and that made others feel uncomfortable, I can guarantee
that the uncomfortable ones would be made to feel VERY uncomfortable by the
rest of the community, because it is a very open and tolerant, live and let
live, community. Discomfort just doesn't come up that often, but it is part
of what makes people complain about litter and messes and it is part of what
makes people complain about the very blunt language used.

So far complaining about messes gets plenty of response and sympathy in the
community. But people are willing to encounter some discomfort for freedom
of speech (as long as it is not abusive; not directed at another; and not in
any way, ever, consisting of offensive slurs), and no discomfort at all for
abuse of any kind, verbal or physical.

I am trying to think of other areas where discomfort comes up and things are
not a little more objective. I am not succeeding at the moment, but maybe
someone else will jog my memory.

I am also not sure other people define what they think is not okay the same
way I do. That is to say, I am not sure that other people would use the
"discomfort" meter to help themselves figure out these things.

It is especially hard to defend discomfort when everything about a Sudbury
school makes most people extraordinarily uncomfortable. But that we are also
willing to live with; we just pick our battles and make them important ones.

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