I've caused a lot of anger and resentment about this post, and my responses to the criticisms people had about it. Blackamazon, in particular, had a lot of important things to say about it, over at Having Read the Fine Print, and irn had a really insightful response in the comments, too.
The criticism about my getting the pronoun wrong was something that I wanted to immediately fix, but I also wanted to step back and take some time to think about the rest. Because... honestly? It's really hard to read something like that and not feel ridiculously defensive and frustrated and angry and about two inches tall, and, and, and... well, basically, to try to justify why I'm Right and All Of My Critics Are Being Unfair and I Didn't Do Anything Wrong and I'm Doing My Best.
Which, obviously, doesn't actually do anything good for anyone but me and my bruised feelings.
I don't like pissing the people I respect off, and it's troubling to see people that I know are doing good work, and that I know are living and breathing this, and that I know are smart as hell about these issues looking over and thinking "What the fuck are you doing?" Because, well... it suggests that, you know, maybe I'm doing something really wrong.
So, I realized that what I really needed was to step back and think about the situation, and really think about what was being said to and about me and my post before I opened my mouth again. Because, yeah, my first instinct was to react- to respond. Instead, I turned off the computer and walked away. I think it was the right call.
Because, after obsessing over it for most of the weekend- running it around my head, going back and rereading Blackamazon's posts, rereading the comments on my and other sites, I have to admit that I was being an asshole. Ignoring, for a second, my failure to properly cite Blackamazon's site (which was also egregiously stupid and rightly criticized, and for which there is no excuse), I still really dropped the ball here, and I want to take a moment to apologize and recognize what is being said.
It's not remotely fair to expect other people to see the proposal with the same eyes that I do, or to have the same feelings that I do. And the fact is, Blackamazon is absolutely right, my stake in all of this is significantly different, and it does let me "blithely pullout resumes as predictors and say at worst were no better off." Because, yeah, I'm no worse off... that doesn't mean that nobody is. That I come to this from a place where the stakes are low if it's not handled properly doesn't mean that there aren't a whole lot of people who have very good reasons for being really concerned about what happens.
Which is to say that it's ridiculously shitty of me to accuse other people of coming in bad faith because they're coming to and looking at all of this from a place that I will never experience. It was a shit move, and did nothing to engage with the very real criticisms and concerns that a lot of people were having. It doesn't answer their concerns- it ignores them and, worse, silences them by distracting from what people are really trying to talk about.
And whether or not I agree with all of the criticisms of the proposal or not, I should be able to understand that it does come from a place of genuine concern, legitimate frustration, and a history of really fucked up shit. Not least of which: the open dismissing of critics out of hand, or the implying/outright stating that they're insane or unreasonable for having the concerns and criticisms that they have. Both of which I did, and which are... well... "disturbingly common shit".
I am sorry that I couldn't and didn't disagree without being ignorant and offensive about it, and without recognizing that my place of privilege was giving me a significantly different read on things, and blinding me to the really significant concerns of other people. I don't want to offer any excuses. As irn pointed out, intentions are secondary to consequences. Right now, I can admit that I was wrong, offer my apology, and acknowledging that I've got a long way to go, and a lot of work to do.