hello once again from the Grim Reaper welcome to the next video in my misuse of word series the word I'll be going over in this pair of videos is phobia now this is a little bit different than racism as you can imagine because phobia as a suffix can be attached to a great number of things which completely changes its meaning the interesting thing about that is then the fact that the word phobia can be misused in totally different ways depending on its prefix so in all actuality these two videos will be covering the misuse of several different words to begin with let's look at the actual definition for the word phobia a persistent irrational fear of a specific object activity or situation that leads to a compelling desire to avoid it okay so you'll notice that the definition refers to an irrational fear not dislike not hatred fear I'm sure you guys can think of a lot of phobias but I think the quintessential phobia is arachnophobia or fear of spiders now often about you guys but I can definitely speak to the physical symptoms of what a phobia feels like in the context of spiders luckily for me living in Canada reduces the size of spiders that I have to encounter on a regular basis but I found an inch long one in my bathtub once and I Unleashed one of the longest streams of obscenities that I can recall I don't even have the benefit of being able to ask my husband to squish it for me because he's the same way we found a spider in our bedroom once and we were both so freaked out that we had to move to the spare room to calm down and sleep it's funny in hindsight but god damn the adrenaline was real in that moment now this kind of irrationality can arise in response to a lot of different things needles public spaces are speaking insects animals actually a brief act that you guys might find interesting is that most phobias in the real sense of the word have similar physiological symptoms strong anxiety activation of the sympathetic nervous system fight-or-flight in layman's terms and panic attacks but blood injection injury phobias have a unique set of symptoms involving an increase in blood pressure and heart rate followed by a sudden drop in both which can result in dizziness nausea and fainting interestingly the reason for this suspected to be evolutionary in nature as by fainting the person being attacked or injured might inhibit further attack and the drop in blood pressure would minimize blood loss but this is just me going on a bio psych nerd tangent so I'll get back to business now I don't want to come across like a total patent here if you look up the word phobic you encounter having an intolerance or a version 4 along with the original definition of phobia naturally that original definition still stands in a lot of cases like agoraphobia arachnophobia or claustrophobia but when people use the word Islamophobic xenophobic homophobic or transphobic they're rarely if ever referring to an irrational fear anymore instead these words which I would probably argue are the most common uses of the suffix phobia in the authoritarian left refer instead to the notion that people who hold those labels feel hatred or intolerance towards the prefix as I established with the word phobic I wouldn't necessarily say that this switch is a misuse or that it's even inaccurate but I would say that even in this sense a lot of the times like many other misused words these are being handed out far more often than they're called for so because it follows from my previous video I'll begin with Islamophobia as an example you'll recall back to m103 the specific reference to Islamophobia and the need to condemn it the problem is the motion doesn't really take any measures to define what that word really means we can make a guess based on the dictionary definition hatred or fear of Muslims or of their politics or culture but what does this look like in practice certainly we can assume that hate crimes and violence against someone based on the fact that they're Muslim would be included and rightly so I'd say similarly the assumption that all Muslims are radical terrorists I would also say qualifies as an irrational fear but exactly how far down does the concept of Islamophobia or even simply discrimination go is a cartoonist drawing images of the Prophet Mohammed critical or otherwise an example of discrimination against Muslims is making a Muslim cashier handle pork or alcohol products an example of discrimination is requiring someone to remove a face fail to go into a bank an example of Islamophobia I'm sure a lot of people would argue that no it obviously isn't but there are plenty of people who would try to argue the opposite then this is part of the issue if we don't clearly delineate what constitutes Islamophobia what constitutes religious discrimination all of a sudden you might get more and more people asking for special treatment or exemptions because if you don't give me those exemptions then that's against my religion and therefore Islamophobic and after all you know how we feel about Islamophobia but let's leave that concept alone after all there's a reason they call the slippery slope a fallacy I don't mean to suggest that something like this definitely will happen I just want to paint a picture of why a motion based on a concept like this is a flawed one I want to touch on something else as I've mentioned already there are legitimate examples of irrational fear and intolerance of Muslims without question and of course there is never any excuse for behaving in a hateful manner towards anyone based on their beliefs but at the same time is it not also true that there are some beliefs and behaviors prevalent in Islamic cultures that are perfectly rational to fear and to a certain extent to be intolerant of countries in the Middle East are often quite well known for being lacking in human rights a lot of people tend to focus on women's rights in these areas but let me assure you it's rarely a picnic for men either I'm sure a lot of you are aware of what some of these human rights violations look like but I'll list a few examples many of these countries have constitutional declarations claiming to protect freedom of religion but in many cases this is limited an apostasy from Islam nevertheless often carries significant punishments up to and including the death penalty speaking of the death penalty these countries often impose such punishment for crimes that we in the West would generally consider comparatively minimal such as adultery robbery and even drug use in some cases these methods of execution are usually not quick and painless but rather the opposite going against international conventions against cruelty and punishments most of these countries are generally unsupportive of LGBT rights to say the least several of these countries only impose strong penalties or life in prison for homosexuality the dark red countries have been known to dole out the death penalty you might even go so far as to call them homophobic women in many Islamic countries are forced to a restrictive clothing in various degrees to avoid tempting the men around them you may be familiar with this image this is a women's protest against the hijab in Iran in 1979 a lot of these countries were much more free and open just a few short decades ago and now many of them placed restrictions on what women are and aren't allowed to wear these restrictions come with punishments for disobeying so it's not as though they're simply choosing to dress modestly many Muslims living in countries that are not predominantly Islamic believe that sharia law should be imposed in those countries some even going as far as to state that they prefer to live by sharia law instead of the laws of the country I strongly encourage you to check out the link I'll be posting below titled Muslim statistics as it provides several examples of this including percentages on people who believe is such now these few examples that I listed generally tend to occur in countries where Islam is the dominant religion and though certainly not every individual living in these cultures supports these codes of conduct they are nevertheless prevalent and supported by a lot of people in power and average citizens alike you ask the average person living in a Western culture if they would rather their lifestyle become more like these countries and nine point nine times out of ten I'm pretty sure we could wager a guess at what they'd say so given our overall conception of phobia as an irrational fear intolerance or dislike and given Islamophobia as a hatred or intolerance of Muslims I'd therefore like to posit a few questions is it irrational for a gay man to be afraid of an ideology and I want to point out here that I'm referring to the ideology not too specific Muslims that treat something he had no control over and that hurts no one else as though it's an offense sufficiently punishable by death is it particularly hateful for a woman to feel distaste at the prospect of being made to cover up against her own desires by an ideology is it intolerant for someone to believe that the prospects of a rape victim being punished for being raped is a horrible one I could go on but I think you get the point I don't think that it's unreasonable irrational or even particularly hateful or intolerant for people from more liberal Western societies to find many of these concepts hateful and intolerant in their own right let's use Christian persecution of homosexuals as an example most people are pretty well against this sort of thing at this point and are quick to call out Christian bigotry in this right look at all the shit that pens caught for his view is if you need a face to pair with this nobody calls this reaction Christian of phobic or anything similar to that because I think at this point everyone just kind of acknowledges that this is an outdated viewpoint that has no place in the Galit Arian secular society but for some reason a lot of people seem to be giving the ideology of Islam a free pass I on the other hand don't think it's irrational or intolerant at all to want to challenge some of these viewpoints even if just to make sure that when accepting newcomers into our society we don't import a different sort of intolerance it's not unreasonable for people to be a little uncomfortable that certain practices are becoming more common in the West that have long since been considered inappropriate again the use of the word Islamophobia has its place but it doesn't lie in simply challenging the tenets of Islam we have to make sure that this distinction is made very clear so that we don't start confusing protection of people with protection of ideologies I'm going to briefly address the concept of xenophobia now before I end this video and I'll save homophobia and transphobia for the next part I was going to try to fit them all in the same video but I didn't realize just how far down the transphobia rabbit-hole wind before I get into this concept however let's lighten the mood with a little bit of somatically appropriate music ah that's better so the common definition of xenophobia is fear or hatred of foreigners people from different countries or strangers it's pretty easy to picture a person who thinks their culture is the best and that everyone else is inferior one of the first images I get in my mind when I picture this is a woman I saw while on vacation in Mexico screaming at a receptionist for having the audacity to not have American change for her American cash it was a pretty uncomfortable experience when I picture a xenophobic person I envisioned someone particularly self-centered ignorant and completely unwilling to accept that their homeland isn't the best place in the world to live I think to a certain extent we all have a little bit of personal bias towards the place where we grew up or the areas with which we're most familiar but I think that when that bias pushes in to the superiority aspect is when we start seeing problems I haven't seen this one being misused nearly as much as the other three phobias I've mentioned the primary misuse that I do see is the idea that white people are completely xenophobic for the idea of just maybe wanting to preserve their culture I hate to linger on this topic and I promise this is the last video for a long while that I'll be bringing it up but a lot of this seems to be coming from the mass migration that Europe is seeing right now many people are afraid that a lot of these countries are losing crucial elements of their cultures and many others are calling me fearful people vina phobic for daring to want to preserve what made their countries special the thing is I don't think that a large portion of these people are intolerant or hateful of other cultures at all it's not incongruent to want to respect other cultures but also to desire to preserve your own but unfortunately it seems that anytime a white person talks about this they become xenophobic it's actually humorous when you consider this in tandem with the concept of cultural appropriation that so often gets thrown out these days because not only is it a horrible thing for white people to want to utilize any elements of other cultures but it's also terrible for white people to want to preserve their cultures hell some people are going as far as to argue that white people have no culture so it seemed like white people are in some a weird culture limbo where they simultaneously hate other cultures but have none of their own and therefore can't resist the urge to use elements from said other cultures that they hate damn I'm confused right now this social justice shit is hard to keep track of anyway it's a little strange that this concept is so often levied at white cultures when one of the most well known xenophobic cultures is actually Asian Japan is one of the most homogeneous first world countries and is comparable intolerant of ethnic minorities when many first world countries were eager to accept Syrian refugees Japan joined in the efforts by helping a whopping 150 of them and I'm not even kidding you the first line in this article goes as follows a Japanese program aimed at accepting a small number of refugees from war-torn Syria is under fire for implying that pregnant women are not welcome damn and yet somehow Japan doesn't seem to be facing nearly as much flak for this as majority white culture there's a pretty obvious imbalance there and it seems to be flowing from the increasingly poisonous social justice groups and universities saying that white people can do no right and again it seems sad that I should have to clarify this but I certainly don't think that white cultures are the pinnacle of human existence nor that I think that other cultures are inherently inferior but I also don't think that it's fair for everyone else to have a reasonable stake in wanting to preserve their cultures but the moment white people desire to do so it's viewed as racist and xenophobic it's obviously unequal and unfair and the notion should be challenged whenever it comes up anyway I think that's going to mark the end of this video I can't guarantee you which video will be coming out next as I have so many ideas that I've wanted to talk about and concepts on the back burner that I might bring forward just as a brief change of pace but rest assured that I'll be working on the video about homophobia and transphobia in tandem with these other videos either way I'll try to have something out sometime next week so thanks again for watching and I
More from this creator:
Welcome to the next video in my Misuse of Words series. In this video I begin to explore the use of the word "phobia" and how, even if we accept the fact that it has deviated from its original concept of an "irrational fear", it is still often over-applied as, a lot of the time, people aren't actually being hateful or intolerant.
The next video in the series will cover Homo- and Trans- phobia, though I can't guarantee that'll be the next thing I put out. I have a lot of videos I've been planning. It also might take me a little longer than usual as I really want to get some new panels drawn. I'd hate for you guys to get bored of the same old expressions. ;)