No good deed goes unpunished

Elizabeth Harman was offended by a sign celebrating street harassment, and managed to set in motion a series of events that led to the sign being removed (see here and here for a reminder).

But apparently Harman’s position is woefully inconsistent because she defends the permissibility of abortion. Don’t follow that leap of logic? Neither do I. But it’s out there in the madness of the internet. The article, predictably, reminds us that we should all just chill the hell out about that sign because it was no big deal. Once we’ve calmed down we can begin to take more seriously our moral and teleological duties as fetus-incubators. Like nice girls.

In the midst of its madness, though, the article does afford us this gem: “Prof. Harmon’s stupidity is offensive to me” (my emphasis). Once again, irony saves the day.

5 thoughts on “No good deed goes unpunished

  1. Wow, the comments after the odd article are incredibly heartening! In this case, the internet does better than the individual columnist.

  2. Yes, that was my first reaction too. The author was pretty much smacked down.

  3. Wow thanks for pointing me in the direction of the comments. I had read the article earlier in the day and had to leave it unfinished I found it so unpalatable. It’s heartening that for once the comments of an online article hold intelligence instead of belligerence.

  4. Unusual column alright. I gather that it sprang from a rudimentary moral intuition on the columnist’s part that was once more artfully and pithily expressed as “How canst thou say to thy brother, Brother, let me pull out the mote that is in thine eye, when thou thyself beholdest not the beam that is in thine own eye?” However, it didn’t shed any light on the (im)propriety either of the billboard or of Harman’s moral theories concerning the unborn, or any relation that might exist between them. It may not have been the columnist’s original purpose to do so – the column seemed kind of unscripted – but in that case she could have made the essential point in the space of a tweet and not run the column off the rails.

  5. I just want to call out the fact that Kitty Wells passed away today.

    While she did not write “”It wasn’t God who made honky-tonk angels”, her voice in the 50s was one small but significant signature of the denial of patriarchy that was heard for whatever sociological reasons.

    I celebrate her.

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