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Thread: Destruction or Destroying of any Culture

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    Default Destruction or Destroying of any Culture

    This gets me thinking about a concern that's not always talked about. The fall of a culture. Whether it is through language, art, architecture, customs, beliefs, laws, and many more, I'm curious to know from all of you if you heard or know the many ways one can destroy any kind of culture from a group of people or race.

    You see, there may be a possibility that the human race could thrive without the need of cultural interventions and inventions. No human would be categorized into anything (gender, nationality, sex, religion, loyalty, etc). Every human would just be a human.

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    You see, there may be a possibility that the human race could thrive without the need of cultural interventions and inventions. No human would be categorized into anything (gender, nationality, sex, religion, loyalty, etc). Every human would just be a human.
    this world will never exist.

    next.
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    Quote Originally Posted by chuboy View Post
    Quick, someone get the scientific community onto this one! A truly brilliant hypothesis that would have been insofar overlooked by every researcher who has contributed to this field of science. And it's only 8th grade stuff!
    Quote Originally Posted by Mister Zero
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    Yup, such a world would be perfect. It would be a utopia.

    But the reality is, humans aren't perfect.

    There are no utopias, fellah, there's no such thing. People who try to form or find a utopia are madmen. Even the original book Utopia was a satire written by an author who wrote satires.

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    not to mention this type of world would remove every single unique difference among people which is more harmful than helpful.
    Last edited by GhostAnime; 7th June 2016 at 12:17 AM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by chuboy View Post
    Quick, someone get the scientific community onto this one! A truly brilliant hypothesis that would have been insofar overlooked by every researcher who has contributed to this field of science. And it's only 8th grade stuff!
    Quote Originally Posted by Mister Zero
    I roam Johto with my partner Pokemon, Rattata, who knows Hyper Fang, Sunny Day, Rock Smash and Cut. Anyone who runs with more than one Pokemon or evolves their Pokemon takes the game way too seriously.

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    Don't like the idea of destroying cultures because it seems wrong to me. Nothing wrong with different cultures as far as I can see.
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    The topic could use some more focus, but you did touch on something interesting. I don't think all cultural identifiers are inherently bad. We can stand to try and get rid of the most problematic ones. Nationhood should probably go, I think. It would be much better if people saw themselves as united under the single identity of citizens of earth, rather than Russian, Brazillian, American, etc. I don't think that's utopian, just difficult. One world government, for the win.

    I don't even think utopia is impossible either, but I guess that's a different can of worms?
    Last edited by Baba Yaga; 7th June 2016 at 2:20 AM.

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    i don't see why nationhood is inherently bad.

    we all have different cultures so we can't possibly all see ourselves as the same nation. too many different rules, customs, laws, etc.

    y'all are being too utopian even when you try not too.
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    Quote Originally Posted by chuboy View Post
    Quick, someone get the scientific community onto this one! A truly brilliant hypothesis that would have been insofar overlooked by every researcher who has contributed to this field of science. And it's only 8th grade stuff!
    Quote Originally Posted by Mister Zero
    I roam Johto with my partner Pokemon, Rattata, who knows Hyper Fang, Sunny Day, Rock Smash and Cut. Anyone who runs with more than one Pokemon or evolves their Pokemon takes the game way too seriously.

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    Quote Originally Posted by GhostAnime View Post
    i don't see why nationhood is inherently bad.

    we all have different cultures so we can't possibly all see ourselves as the same nation
    . too many different rules, customs, laws, etc.

    y'all are being too utopian even when you try not too.
    What would you call America, then? People from all kinds of different cultures and backgrounds still unite and feel kinship under the identity of being "American" I'm also not sure how a world in which nationhood, religion, gender, etc. don't exist entails a world where no one is unique or distinct from one another. In a post-gender world, for example, you would still have people that present themselves in ways that we would acknowledge as being feminine or masculine, it's just that the arbitrary labels of "man" and "woman" wouldn't be used or subscribed to anymore, taking away the "Us" vs "Them" Likewise, a world in which nationhood isn't seen as a valid concept people wouldn't abandon their heritage or traditions, they simply wouldn't subscribe to the notion that they are a "Russian" and you are a "Brit"

    I also think "utopian" is often just shorthand laziness to dismiss anything that can be conceptually difficult to imagine. Whenever you start talking about a world that could possibly be better than the one that we have, in comes the cynic circus.
    Last edited by Baba Yaga; 7th June 2016 at 7:33 AM.

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    there is still an "American" identity. it's so large that it's regional, in fact.

    there are 50 states.
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    Quote Originally Posted by chuboy View Post
    Quick, someone get the scientific community onto this one! A truly brilliant hypothesis that would have been insofar overlooked by every researcher who has contributed to this field of science. And it's only 8th grade stuff!
    Quote Originally Posted by Mister Zero
    I roam Johto with my partner Pokemon, Rattata, who knows Hyper Fang, Sunny Day, Rock Smash and Cut. Anyone who runs with more than one Pokemon or evolves their Pokemon takes the game way too seriously.

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    Alright, I'll rephrase. (Though I technically already said this) We should work toward one, all encompassing nation state: Earth.

    With me, as its king.
    Last edited by Baba Yaga; 7th June 2016 at 7:36 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Baba Yaga View Post
    I'm also not sure how a world in which nationhood, religion, gender, etc. don't exist entails a world where no one is unique or distinct from one another. In a post-gender world, for example, you would still have people that present themselves in ways that we would acknowledge as being feminine or masculine, it's just that the arbitrary labels of "man" and "woman" wouldn't be used or subscribed to anymore, taking away the "Us" vs "Them" Likewise, a world in which nationhood isn't seen as a valid concept people wouldn't abandon their heritage or traditions, they simply wouldn't subscribe to the notion that they are a "Russian" and you are a "Brit"
    This is equivalent to people talking about the idea of being "colorblind" to fix racism.

    Let me just ask you something, how are you exactly conceptualizing this? What is the thought process of the so-call people?

    Are they looking at me and saying they don't see me as an African-American male? despite the fact that that is my outward appearance? If that's the case, that is utopian because you're essentially telling people to ignore what their eyes actually see.

    If in fact what you're conceptualizing is more that they don't care that I am an African-American male but can see that I am? That is a little bit more realistic, but when you hint at "destroying" identities and cultures, I'm 100% sure it does not entail this scenario.

    I also think "utopian" is often just shorthand laziness to dismiss anything that can be conceptually difficult to imagine.
    Not laziness. It's literally utopian to think humans can ignore what they see. We are psychologically bound to putting images in our head no matter what. They are going to see me as an African-American male whether you think they can pretend to or not.
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    Quote Originally Posted by chuboy View Post
    Quick, someone get the scientific community onto this one! A truly brilliant hypothesis that would have been insofar overlooked by every researcher who has contributed to this field of science. And it's only 8th grade stuff!
    Quote Originally Posted by Mister Zero
    I roam Johto with my partner Pokemon, Rattata, who knows Hyper Fang, Sunny Day, Rock Smash and Cut. Anyone who runs with more than one Pokemon or evolves their Pokemon takes the game way too seriously.

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    This is equivalent to people talking about the idea of being "colorblind" to fix racism.

    Let me just ask you something, how are you exactly conceptualizing this? What is the thought process of the so-call people?

    Are they looking at me and saying they don't see me as an African-American male? despite the fact that that is my outward appearance? If that's the case, that is utopian because you're essentially telling people to ignore what their eyes actually see.

    If in fact what you're conceptualizing is more that they don't care that I am an African-American male but can see that I am? That is a little bit more realistic, but when you hint at "destroying" identities and cultures, I'm 100% sure it does not entail this scenario.


    Not laziness. It's literally utopian to think humans can ignore what they see. We are psychologically bound to putting images in our head no matter what. They are going to see me as an African-American male whether you think they can pretend to or not.
    It seems like you moved the goal posts a bit. Are you still arguing that this vision would be worse, and rob everyone of all their unique differences or are you just arguing that it's pie in the sky, Utopian silliness now? Human nature isn't fixed and immutable. What separates human beings from other animals is that we have the intellectual capacity to override our biological programming. Even assuming that it was absolutely impossible to overcome the group psychology that's inherent to us all, we're learning more about the human brain every single day. It's possible and rather likely that one day instead of throwing serial killers in jail, they'll simply crack open your skull and rewire your circuitry so you can feel empathy more strongly. Likewise aversion and fear of "the other" is a base instinct and could likely be tackled in a similar way. It isn't about creating a hypothetical society where people ignore what they see, but as you said, one in which they don't care or don't see superficial traits as being inherent to who you are as a person. If most people don't see curly hair, crooked noses, or eyebrows slightly higher than the other, as being particularly important than they can also be trained to see variation in skin tone in a similar way. Working toward that ideal doesn't entail destroying culture or ignoring the unique problems that people of color face.
    Last edited by Baba Yaga; 8th June 2016 at 12:56 AM.

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    It seems like you moved the goal posts a bit. Are you still arguing that this vision would be worse, and rob everyone of all their unique differences or are you just arguing that it's pie in the sky, Utopian silliness now?
    Both.

    It isn't about creating a hypothetical society where people ignore what they see, but as you said, one in which they don't care or don't see superficial traits as being inherent to who you are as a person. If most people don't see curly hair, crooked noses, or eyebrows slightly higher than the other, as being particularly important than they can also be trained to see variation in skin tone in a similar way. Working toward that ideal doesn't entail destroying culture or ignoring the unique problems that people of color face.
    Okay, this makes much more sense and is certainly attainable. However, there are many systems in play that even minority people don't themselves notice that contribute to how we view images in the subconscious.
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    Quote Originally Posted by chuboy View Post
    Quick, someone get the scientific community onto this one! A truly brilliant hypothesis that would have been insofar overlooked by every researcher who has contributed to this field of science. And it's only 8th grade stuff!
    Quote Originally Posted by Mister Zero
    I roam Johto with my partner Pokemon, Rattata, who knows Hyper Fang, Sunny Day, Rock Smash and Cut. Anyone who runs with more than one Pokemon or evolves their Pokemon takes the game way too seriously.

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    this begs a bigger question: are there cultures worthy of destruction? when we advocate going overseas to go take out the bad guys oppressing women/religious minorities/whatever, we are advocating destroying part of a culture that has elements we don't like. Of course, our justification is that these are barbaric cultures with backwards views etc., and we are protecting the innocent - noble reasons, in other words. I would say there are some cultures that violate the securities and dignities the majority and figureheads of our macro society have collectively decided are our fundamental rights - the question is, is it our duty to replace these institutions with ones more akin to what we want to progress towards overall. Or do we expect ourselves to take a pacifistic, non-interventionist approach and hope these subdivisions of human culture figure out on their own?

    this doesn't apply to just nations and the cultures binding those (and larger geopolitical regions) together of course, but even at a more intimate level - car culture, gun culture, etc. This of course opens up other cans of worms, such as whether guns really are the problem causing so many mass shootings, or rather our lack of maturity at the micro and macro levels of our culture to use guns responsibly, with the utmost respect for the fact that these are deadly weapons which can do a lot of serious harm if improperly used. The latter is a frequent argument of the pro-gun lobby - don't blame the tool, blame the person. The problem is that even with changing such cultural attitudes we can't always account for one-off wingnuts flying under the radar and get guns, sometimes much more readily than a license to drive or even a really big sharp knife. The potential for destruction is exponentially more with the popular choice of murder weapon so many spree shooters use than these other two options. With all of these factors involved, we have to be very careful about how we approach the reorganization or dismantling of cultures, lest we incur unexpected consequences.
    Last edited by Cifala; 11th June 2016 at 6:27 PM.
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    People need some kind of culture, but it doesn't have to be the cultures we have now. There is no reason why people would necessarily need national culture, gender-based culture, etc. The only limits are the laws of physics.

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    How do you figure what people don't need?
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    Quote Originally Posted by chuboy View Post
    Quick, someone get the scientific community onto this one! A truly brilliant hypothesis that would have been insofar overlooked by every researcher who has contributed to this field of science. And it's only 8th grade stuff!
    Quote Originally Posted by Mister Zero
    I roam Johto with my partner Pokemon, Rattata, who knows Hyper Fang, Sunny Day, Rock Smash and Cut. Anyone who runs with more than one Pokemon or evolves their Pokemon takes the game way too seriously.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Aegiscalibur View Post
    People need some kind of culture, but it doesn't have to be the cultures we have now. There is no reason why people would necessarily need national culture, gender-based culture, etc. The only limits are the laws of physics.
    I'd argue psychology would fit somewhere in limiting what humans want/need
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cifala View Post
    this begs a bigger question: are there cultures worthy of destruction? when we advocate going overseas to go take out the bad guys oppressing women/religious minorities/whatever, we are advocating destroying part of a culture that has elements we don't like. Of course, our justification is that these are barbaric cultures with backwards views etc., and we are protecting the innocent - noble reasons, in other words. I would say there are some cultures that violate the securities and dignities the majority and figureheads of our macro society have collectively decided are our fundamental rights - the question is, is it our duty to replace these institutions with ones more akin to what we want to progress towards overall. Or do we expect ourselves to take a pacifistic, non-interventionist approach and hope these subdivisions of human culture figure out on their own?

    this doesn't apply to just nations and the cultures binding those (and larger geopolitical regions) together of course, but even at a more intimate level - car culture, gun culture, etc. This of course opens up other cans of worms, such as whether guns really are the problem causing so many mass shootings, or rather our lack of maturity at the micro and macro levels of our culture to use guns responsibly, with the utmost respect for the fact that these are deadly weapons which can do a lot of serious harm if improperly used. The latter is a frequent argument of the pro-gun lobby - don't blame the tool, blame the person. The problem is that even with changing such cultural attitudes we can't always account for one-off wingnuts flying under the radar and get guns, sometimes much more readily than a license to drive or even a really big sharp knife. The potential for destruction is exponentially more with the popular choice of murder weapon so many spree shooters use than these other two options. With all of these factors involved, we have to be very careful about how we approach the reorganization or dismantling of cultures, lest we incur unexpected consequences.
    It depends on what you would define as intervention or interference. I agree with you that I do not believe that the West has any right to just go invade and firebomb a soveriegn nation into oblivion because there are aspects of their culture we dislike, but what about other measures? Does economically strong arming another country into complying with us count as intervention, like sanctions for example? Even something as simple as a public condemnation from the U.S. and its allies has the potential to put an immense amount of pressure on the recieving country. I supported the U.S. when it condemned the murder of several secular bloggers in Bangladesh. Is that intervention, due to the possibility the government of Bangladesh may now act for fear of worsening relations with the U.S.?

    I understand that there are serious problems within our own culture, but I don't believe in with holding criticism of another culture just for that reason. I've heard this referred to as "punching down" when you critique a culture that doesn't have as much power and dominance, and I've agreed with it in other contexts but I guess not this one. If you hold onto liberal democratic values, I think your critique should be fairly consistent across the board. I support the right of other cultures to have self determination free from interference of more dominant groups, but no one has the right to be immune from critique.
    Last edited by Baba Yaga; 12th June 2016 at 10:08 AM.

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    I understand that there are serious problems within our own culture, but I don't believe in with holding criticism of another culture just for that reason. I've heard this referred to as "punching down" when you critique a culture that doesn't have as much power and dominance, and I've agreed with it in other contexts but I guess not this one. If you hold onto liberal democratic values, I think your critique should be fairly consistent across the board. I support the right of other cultures to have self determination free from interference of more dominant groups, but no one has the right to be immune from critique.
    this is a very common issue amongst both fringes of the spectrum; people by nature like to skirt responsibility and blame things on any number of factors, to varying degrees of success. Now of course when you look at countries like many of those in central/west Africa, you'll see that many of their problems are in fact products of colonialism; not all things obviously can simply be blamed on that, but indeed a fair number of them have very obvious roots. It can and should be considered regressive to withhold any criticisms though - while it might be fun and convenient to just blame everything on "the West" or "men" or "America" or any other group perceived to be at an enormous advantage, it's hardly constructive and it repels people from wanting to have an open dialogue. That being said, how do you go about making constructive criticisms which own up to these problems without being perceived as too interventionist?

    Look at Trump; I would argue that both sides of the spectrum are to blame for his rise, at least the fundamentalist ends, because there's simply no culture of finding a common ground anymore which pushes people farther and farther into their ruts of what's right and wrong. The political culture and social media culture of the information age has created a monster with no clear weakness other than education and open-mindedness. On the right you have crazy people who want to blame everything on "leftists" and "liberal poison"; on the left you have smug assholes ready to shame anyone who doesn't agree 100% with them. THAT is the culture in America that should be reconsidered and restructured, because these attitudes are the country's bane rather than a figurehead like Trump or Clinton
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    Quote Originally Posted by GhostAnime
    How do you figure what people don't need?
    Don't need for what? It depends on what they want to do, and that's contingent.

    Quote Originally Posted by Cifala
    I'd argue psychology would fit somewhere in limiting what humans want/need
    Included in the laws of physics, taken in a broad sense. I said it that way on purpose.

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    There is no reason why people would necessarily need national culture, gender-based culture, etc.
    how about the ones you listed for example? why wouldn't we need national/gender culture?
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    Quote Originally Posted by chuboy View Post
    Quick, someone get the scientific community onto this one! A truly brilliant hypothesis that would have been insofar overlooked by every researcher who has contributed to this field of science. And it's only 8th grade stuff!
    Quote Originally Posted by Mister Zero
    I roam Johto with my partner Pokemon, Rattata, who knows Hyper Fang, Sunny Day, Rock Smash and Cut. Anyone who runs with more than one Pokemon or evolves their Pokemon takes the game way too seriously.

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    Quote Originally Posted by GhostAnime
    how about the ones you listed for example? why wouldn't we need national/gender culture?
    I just explained it. We don't need them because what people want is contingent. If you want to have a nation, then national culture is the way to go, but why would you need a nation? You might need a state that organizes health care, education and so on, but that doesn't mean you need a nation.

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    All of the answers so far are interesting. But some of the respondents here are nailing my question right. Contingency is something I never thought of, but it was there in the back of my mind. Utopia is DEFINITELY NOT a thing I can believe in. My thought process would be a saying listed below.

    "I'm aware of what your beliefs and way of life may be, but I do not care. I won't get involved at all nor should you get involved with me. We are simply humans living life to survive and live. Other importances of culture are least important. Be neutral to everything. Not progressing fast nor sticking with primitive instincts."

    I find that national culture, gender culture, social culture, and other kinds of culture are not meant to be immortalized in all human cultures. In this case, I would not care where you would live, how you live, what you were taught, what you chose to be, etc. Humanity's progress is oftentimes a thing I heavily criticize no matter what status would they have in their current state.

    My take on this is that humans just need to be aware of the many cultures, but not force themselves and every other human into whatever culture they get exposed to. How so? I'm not sure if you notice some historical books or lore. I'm most context on the interaction between two human cultures, it could end up being A conquers B to destroy B's culture (as if in the case of Philippine history [for those not in the know, Spain, America, and Japan, made us lower class human beings] before becoming independent in the 1950s) or A and B working together amidst cultural differences (think of the existing European Union).

    Long story short, just about all cultures are either living high or see itself being lowly worthless. Maybe a culture being neutral and in the middle way of life is ... impossible.

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