Bonum Certa Men Certa

Delayed Series About Dr. Richard Stallman

posted by Roy Schestowitz on May 27, 2024,
updated May 27, 2024

His public talk in Paris seems perpetually delayed too (after rehearing in French). Already 12 days overdue and it's holiday again. "No upcoming talks," says the front page. A lot of the attacks on him boil down to petty things like how he stares at people (both men and women - a subject that he explained before) or how he asks some women on a date.

RMS/Omg! someone on the spectrum is staring!!

Quoting a 2021 essay:

Ever since my teenage years, I felt as if there were a filmy curtain separating me from other people my age. I understood the words of their conversations, but I could not grasp why they said what they did. Much later I realized that I didn't understand the subtle cues that other people were responding to.

Later in life, I discovered that some people had negative reactions to my behavior, which I did not even know about. Tending to be direct and honest with my thoughts, I sometimes made others uncomfortable or even offended them -- especially women. This was not a choice: I didn't understand the problem enough to know which choices there were.

Sometimes I lost my temper because I didn't have the social skills to avoid it. Some people could cope with this; others were hurt. I apologize to each of them. Please direct your criticism at me, not at the Free Software Foundation.

Occasionally I learned something about relationships and social skills, so over the years I've found ways to get better at these situations. When people help me understand an aspect of what went wrong, and that shows me a way of treating people better, I teach myself to recognize when I should act that way. I keep making this effort, and over time, I improve.

Some have described me as being "tone-deaf," and that is fair. With my difficulty in understanding social cues, that tends to happen. For instance, I defended Professor Minsky on an M.I.T. mailing list after someone leaped to the conclusion that he was just as guilty as Jeffrey Epstein. To my surprise, some thought my message defended Epstein. As I had stated previously, Epstein is a serial rapist, and rapists should be punished. I wish for his victims and those harmed by him to receive justice.

False accusations -- real or imaginary, against me or against others -- especially anger me. I knew Minsky only distantly, but seeing him unjustly accused made me spring to his defense. I would have done it for anyone. Police brutality makes me angry, but when the cops lie about their victims afterwards, that false accusation is the ultimate outrage for me. I condemn racism and sexism, including their systemic forms, so when people say I don't, that hurts too.

A new week has begun, but it is a bank holiday in England and Wales. It is also a holiday in the US.

For those of us who do digital housekeeping every day it is a chance to catch up and clean up. Today will be a "slow news day" (cycle of news slow as many editors do not work), but we are preparing future publications, including a series about cancel culture's war on RMS (Dr. Stallman). We've decided to delay it a little (again) because of new and interesting information.

An associate says that RMS has become or maybe always was complex. His contributions to the world are unquestionable, but his shortcomings increase with time and are used effectively by opponents of software freedom (or freedom in general) in distractions from his contributions.

"It might or might not be useful to start out the series enumerating and categorising the logical fallacies the Microsofters and related interests try to use to get people looking away from software freedom," the associate asserts. "Most of the fallacies they use are distractions, e.g. ad hominem. However, there are others. Also, the personal attacks are about cancelling his ideas because he dares to continue to use the F-word" (freedom).

Attempts to silence people who speak about Free software, oppose back doors, shun GAFAM etc. are hardly new. Having said that, they've grown in viciousness and intensity.

Free Speech and Free software

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