Yeah we should

A reckless claim for a philosopher to make:

Absolutely it means that we shouldn’t tell anyone who they are

I know I’ve pointed this out more than once before, but it’s just such an absurdity, and especially for a philosopher (or people in law enforcement, or psychologists).

Introspection is fallible. Self-knowledge is fallible. There are some kinds of knowledge that can only be gleaned from the knower in question, but it’s far from true that all knowledge is like that or that we have any obligation to pretend it is.

People can for instance claim to be the least racist person you’ve ever met. I’d be suspicious of people like that if I were you. That applies to most or all defensive claims of that type.

Also, the world is full of cheats and frauds and liars and manipulators. If we make it an absolute rule that that we shouldn’t tell anyone who they are then we’re at their mercy. Let’s not be at their mercy.

People can pretend to be passionately progressive and enlightened while actually being angry belligerent bullies. There are times when we need to tell those people who they are, lest they take over our book group or circle of friends or political movement.

I think there are things people should tell Rebecca Kukla about herself.

(That’s unkind, but she was being worse than unkind to a friend of mine just before she said that silly thing.)

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