Chapter the first! (And last!)N9w I realize we've 6een at this f9r s9me time already,
6ut at the risk 9f derailing the dial9gue y9u initiated,
and may I just say h9w thrilled I am that y9u did, Karkat, I w9uld just like qualify my entire analysis 9f y9ur "Alternian culture" 6y saying that in c9ntrast with life 9n 6ef9rus, while y9ur pe9ple may have 6een engaged in vi9lent, lethal class struggle f9r milli9ns 9f sweeps, 6y n9 means d9es this imply that the 6ef9ran
way 9f life was entirely with9ut pr96lematic elements, perhaps even m9re distur6ing and insidi9us f9r their lack 9f ackn9wledgement and 9pen discussi9n, particularly as a c9nsequence 9f what in my view were widely and dismayingly unexamined systemic s9cial injustices resulting fr9m the entrenched p9wer dynamics in play, dynamics strikingly similar t9 th9se 9f y9ur planet's markedly m9re 6ellic9se iterati9n, which has 9nly served t9 fully vindicate my hyp9thesis that such a hierarchy is really predicated 9n intrinsic dysfuncti9n, and failure t9 shift all the usual narratives and undiagn9sed pr96lems int9 an 9pen, judgment-free disc9urse thr9ugh which pr96lematic issues are c9nstructively channeled int9 m9re intelligently pr96lematized avenues 9f discussi9n.
N9w 6ef9re I c9ntinue, it is 9nly decent 9f me t9 warn y9u a69ut certain triggers that are surely ahead in this essay. I mean c9nversati9n. Triggers include 6ut likely will n9t 6e limited t9 class 9ppressi9n, culling culture and vi9lence against gru6s, lusus a6use, c9mplementary and anal9g9us hate speech, pail filling, slurries and 9ther c9ncupiscent fluids, lifespan shaming, a6leist slurs, pr9lix dissertation... Actually, may6e it w9uld 6e easier f9r y9u t9 list y9ur triggers, and I'll d9 my 6est t9 av9id th9se t9pics, 9r navigate them m9re delicately, if at all p9ssi6le?
Great. It s9unds like y9u d9n't have any triggers, at least n9ne that y9u kn9w a69ut. I'll pr9ceed with cauti9n nevertheless. Just please let me kn9w if y9u start feeling triggered 6y anything I'm saying, and we can take a 6rief time-9ut while y9u summ9n y9ur m9irail t9 help pacify y9u, assuming y9u have 9ne. N9t that I'm presuming y9u d9, 6ut I heard that y9u did, is that c9rrect? If n9t, I ap9l9gize. I further ap9l9gize if y9ur 9rientati9n precludes the p9ssi6ility, as a pale ar9mantic, panquadrant demir9mantic, s9mething in the gray palesexual department 9r such, and h9pefully y9u are n9t triggered 6y such presumptu9us c9ncillian9rmative language. It w9uldn't 6e the first time I was guilty 9f such an inexcusa6le micr9aggressi9n, and I am n9t s9 96livi9us t9 my 9wn r9mantic privilege t9 6elieve it will 6e the last time either.
I'm glad I 6r9ught up the su6ject 9f unexamined privilege, 6ecause it d9vetails 6eautifully with the p9int I was a69ut t9 make regarding 6ef9ran s9ciety and its savage um6ral p9tentiality which later manifested thr9ugh the kind 9f Alternian 6rutality y9u are all t99 familiar with. Th9se in the higher echel9ns 9f the hem9spectrum such as the ceruleans, 9r "6lue 6l99ds" (careful, 6eing l99se with such termin9l9gy is 9pening the fl99dgates t9 a wh9le h9st 9f t9xic signist language and hem9ph96ic slurs), when addressing the challenges faced 6y th9se l9wer 9n the spectrum, such as the midhues 9r in particular warm castes like um6ers, 9chres, 9r "rust 6l99ds" (an9ther slur, highly pr96lematic, deeply 9ffensive and triggering termin9l9gy, str9ngly impl9ring y9u steer clear 9f this term),
they w9uld 6e well advised t9 check their cerulean privilege, particularly 6ef9re dismissing hardships 9r marginalizing claims 9f 9ppressi9n, which can 6e difficult f9r them t9 identify 9r empathize with fr9m their advantage9us p9siti9n within the 6ef9ran//Alternian p9wer structures.
And s9me may argue that in 9ur peaceful "ut9pian" culture that we have freed 9urselves fr9m injustice and disparities in privilege in a p9st-scarcity ec9n9my, largely equal rights distri6uted acr9ss the hem9spectrum, and theref9re exist in a "p9st-spectral w9rld"
(laugh 9ut l9ud), and theref9re there is n9 need t9 champi9n imp9rtant s9cial causes and there is n9thing left t9 de6ate, 6ut really n9thing c9uld 6e further fr9m the truth. Y9u just need t9 educate y9urself and carefully investigate the l9ngstanding p9wer dynamics in play. F9r instance, a seemingly "harmless" remark fr9m a cis6l99ded cerulean t9ward an um6er 9r G9d f9r6id a 6urgundy 9r yes even a warm-identifying physically-c99ler caste, a69ut their very l9ng term future plans such as 9n the 9rder 9f centuries, then this may pr9ve t9 6e a very hurtful micr9agressi9n due t9 the fact that l9whues cann9t p9ssi6ly live that l9ng themselves, and the m9re priviliged caste c9uld easily 9utlive d9zens 9f generati9ns 9f midhues 9r hundreds 9f generati9ns 9f 6U9Ys (6urgundy-um6er-9chre-yell9wgreens, n9te please av9id descri6ing the latterm9st as "lime 6l99ds" as it has hist9rically 6een used as an especially vici9us epithet). Such remarks can further trigger painful reminders 9f h9w c99ler castes, t9 s9me extent 9JAs, 6ut CIPs and R9yal-Vs in particular, have 6een a6le t9 use their tremend9us lifespans 9ver the millenia t9 gain a strangleh9ld 9ver the s9cial 9rder, have 6een a6le t9 c9mpletely dictate 9ur s9cietal ev9luti9n 6y ensuring 9nly their cultural agendas and narratives receive the dial9gue's air supply, assuring the c9dificati9n 9f th9se resultant ideals and deciding what "n9rmalcy" entails, and sadly these a6s9lutes 6ec9me internalized acr9ss the full spectral range, even within th9se 9f m9st c9mpr9mised privilege, and s9 y9u 6egin t9 see the cyclical nature 9f the dysfuncti9n and the resulting inertia against p9sitive change and raising awareness 9f the m9st underpr96lematized issues, which I think we can agree, is pretty pr96lematic.
It's nice t9 see we agree 9n s9 much. May6e we are n9t s9 unalike, despite 9ur drastically different up6ringings. Anyway, as I was saying, the st9ry 9f y9ur ancest9r, and m9re imp9rtantly my exhaustive list 9f misgivings with his appr9ach t9 s9cial change, is quite a l9ng and ela69rate 9ne, 6ut it actually fits 6rilliantly within the larger m9saic which captures the 6r9ad str9kes 9f my p9st. I mean 9ur discussi9n. Trigger warnings f9r the f9ll9wing c9ntent include: ancest9r 6ashing, faith shaming, l9ud swearing, t9rture, 6urn w9unds, ship sinking... again, seri9usly, just let me kn9w if y9u 6egin t9 feel triggered 6y anything, even slightly. We'll pause and see if we can really expl9re th9se issues, and identify exactly h9w I may have invalidated y9ur struggles. With9ut further ad9, the st9ry is as f9ll9ws