This is a thread I wish I'd had access to myself in my early 20s when fascists were bombarding me with propaganda.
I hope it helps.
A massive amount of the stuff the alt-right tells you is just a flat-out lie. Here's a far-right US ambassador having to admit, in shame, that he lied about the Netherlands.
It's not a lie for a right-winger to say they find gay men "disgusting" - they probably do. But they won't SAY "I find gay men disgusting." They'll say "gay men ARE disgusting."
This is an effective tactic for seeding self-doubt.
Take this statement: "Africa has produced no great societies."
That word is both suspiciously specific and ludicrously vague, and like other right-wing yardsticks it's almost always presented without clarification on its meaning. It's simply taken as given that everyone will just KNOW what it means.
This doesn't, however, teach you how to deal with right-wingers who come armed with facts.
Debate does not somehow magically decide whose argument is right.
One man, on the left of the stage: "THE EARTH IS ROUND YOU FUCKING IGNORANT PIECE OF SHIT MOUTH-BREATHING INBRED CUNTS!"
Another man, on the right: "I politely suggest that the Earth is flat. I mean, how many of you have actually SEEN this supposed curvature?"
The other argument is incorrect but well-presented. The audience, even if they disagree, like this polite man more.
And here's another awful thing about debate: you can have the more convincing argument and STILL lose.
Let me say it again: WINNING A DEBATE DOES NOT MEAN YOUR OPPONENT HAS TO CHANGE THEIR OPINION. USUALLY, IN FACT, THEY WON'T.
Debate cannot compel a person to be rational.
Losing an argument with a right-winger doesn't make them right.
Failing to convince them to stop doesn't make you a failure.
That's what happened to me.
But. What I didn't realise is that right-wingers even use FACTS deceptively.
CW: racism, obviously
The two most common arguments about black people revolve around crime and IQ. Let's address the crime one first.
Then some crime statistics of some description will be trotted out that show black people as a far higher percentage of convictions for a certain crime than their percentage of the population.
But what is the argument actually saying? "Black people commit more crimes."
This is a statement about crimes committed, not crime convictions. That's a sneaky little switch-up.
First of all: FBI statistics show that for the majority of ALL reported crimes, convictions are not reached. Heck, for most crimes, no ARREST is made.
1. Most crimes go unsolved.
2. There's crimes black people are no more likely to commit but far more likely to be arrested for.
3. Black people are more likely to be found guilty by juries in general.
5. Black people are more likely to be wrongfully found guilty for pretty much any crime.
Oh, and black people get longer sentences for the same crime than white people. vox.com/identities/201…
But that wasn't the argument.
Now I feel like I could just present that article about how white and black people smoke pot at the same rate but black people get arrested three times more often and leave it at that, but I'm not that lazy.
This statement isn't making an argument about crime statistics. It's actually making an argument about a quality of black people. The crime statistics aren't evidence so much as they're props; set dressing to hide the nature of the argument.
But they kind of can't... say that, because then you'd immediately cotton on to their game.
Like... white people would literally burn black neighbourhoods if they got successful.
If you deprive people of equal opportunities for centuries, it turns out they won't experience equality
The term "Intelligenzquotient" was coined by German psychologist William Stern in 1912, who was attempting to find more standardised method of measuring a person's intelligence for the purpose of identifying learning disabilities.
There is, incidentally, a historical trend of hotly debated topics in psychology and neuroscience becoming cornerstones of scientific racism.
It is certainly not a measure of a person's capacity to gainfully exist in human society.
They had this to say on the matter:
"Modern IQ tests (and ESPECIALLY historic ones) have a tendency to slant towards puzzle-solving and cultural bias."
Here's @KorpsPropaganda, a Mensa member, discussing IQ's complete insufficiency as a measure of intellect:
They never seem to suggest the existence of white people with low IQ is an equally pressing issue
There exists no scientific basis for a unified category of "black" people, or "white" people for that matter. Human genetic diversity cannot be demonstrated to work in a way that even remotely matches traditional racial groupings.
This thread is running really long so let's tail off with one more example of how right-wingers twist statistics, one I can directly relate to.
Right-wingers often point to the fact that the highest incidence of new HIV cases is among gay men, and usually this accompanies some sort of statement about how this proves that gay men are filthy and disease-ridden.
Let's dissect this claim.
Statistics suggest that roughly 3.9% of men identify as LGBTQ. The male population of the United States in 2017 was estimated to be about 160 million, which would put the population of LGBTQ men at about 6,240,000.
Now, to provide a pessimistic estimate, I will inflate this number by 1/7th, since statistics suggest 1 in 7 people with HIV are unaware of it. That puts us at 29,426.
That's not even half a percent. That's not even 4 in 100, it's less than 1 in 200. It's probably even less, due to the fact that I highballed my numbers.
So of course what I've done here is extrapolated with a lot of incomplete data and made intentionally skewed inflations or deflations, which is a classic right-wing tactic.
Now: why does the CDC report use that oddly specific phrase, "men who have sex with men" instead of "gay" or "homosexual?"
This would deliver inaccurate information to the CDC, so they don't ask "are you gay?" They ask "who do you have sex with?"
Well firstly, the majority of men who have sex with men are gay. So they won't have sex with women. A sexually transmitted disease is... mostly transmitted via sex.
Oh, no, wait, it was the Reagans.
Because of course it was. theguardian.com/us-news/2016/m…
Talk to black people. Talk to LGBTQ people, particularly lesbians and transgender folk. Talk to women. Talk to differently abled people. Ask them their life experiences, and listen. Just listen to them.
Try to understand how you might contribute to those difficulties, whether or not you mean to.
And if you lose an argument, remember: not winning an argument against them doesn't mean you're wrong.