Did Facebook jump the tolerance shark with 50 new genders for users?

Zuckerberg AP

There comes a point in time when the quest for tolerance warps a person’s mind. Facebook may have reached that point.

The Associated Press reports:

MENLO PARK, Calif. — You don’t have to be just male or female on Facebook anymore. The social media giant has added a customizable option with about 50 different terms people can use to identify their gender as well as three preferred pronoun choices: him, her or them.

Facebook said the changes, shared with The Associated Press before the launch on Thursday, initially cover the company’s 159 million monthly users in the U.S. and are aimed at giving people more choices in how they describe themselves, such as androgynous, bi-gender, intersex, gender fluid or transsexual.

While I have no idea what it feels like to be a transsexual, and I’m happy if it means “the world” to someone to have the ability to select that as their Facebook gender, it also seems to be tolerance overkill to include 50 custom genders. Why stop there? If there are 50 genders that mean the world to Facebook users, there must be more out there. Like Indiana Jones, we must press forward into the unknown.

If you’re going to use “two-spirit,” “pan gender,” “genderqueer,” “gender variant,” “gender fluid,” “neutrois” and dozens of other genders, at what does it just make sense to allow users to just fill in whatever the heck they want? When Facebook becomes Genderbook, it begs the question: Is it possible to jump the shark on tolerance?

At some point in time, will activist groups seek to allow individuals to put “neutrois” on their driver’s license? Will workplace environments have to keep track of the number of new “gender fluid” hires for professional bean counters? There are legitimate chromosomal issues that people have that would warrant an expansion of Facebook genders — and it is important to be sympathetic to their problems — but as a society it appears that we have turned into the equivalent of the doting mother who won’t let her children leave the house out of the fear that something bad will happen to them or someone will hurt their feelings.

When things get too convoluted on most forms there is an “other” category. ‘Other’ is generally an innocuous term that encapsulates the multitude of answers someone could give if they were left to their own devices. If I was a Facebook engineer I would have gone with “male,” “female,” and “other,” … which is probably reason 5,471 why I’m not a Facebook engineer. Regardless, I’d like to know what you think. Did Facebook jump the tolerance shark or am I just gender rigid?

Mark Zuckerberg Invites Obama to Townhall. Bitter Clingers Not Invited.

It wasn’t long ago that Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg was concerned about how he would be portrayed in The Social Network – and with good reason. As John Nolte observed, “there’s no doubt that this look at how the creation of a cultural phenomenon left behind a wake of betrayals, broken relationships and billion-dollar lawsuits is an absolutely fascinating one.”

That fear has apparently passed, as Zuckerberg has latched onto another cultural phenomenon – Barack Obama – who is also well known for betrayals, broken relationships, and expensive lawsuits. The President and Zuckerberg will sit down for a Facebook townhall (minus the bitter clingers) on April 20th as a springboard for big money San Fransisco fundraisers.

We’re honored that President Obama will be visiting headquarters later this month and will be using the Facebook platform to communicate with an international audience,” said Andrew Noyes, a Facebook spokesman…

After his Facebook event, Obama will move on to three fundraisers in San Francisco. In addition to the April 20 dinner hosted by [Salesforce.com CEO Marc Benioff] and his wife, Lynne, some Bay Area Democrats received invitations this week for “a vibrant reception” at the Nob Hill Masonic Center that same afternoon, with prices ranging from $250 to $10,000 a person, and a breakfast the next morning.

It becomes hard to deflect allegations of narcissism when you’re rolling out the red carpet for the guy who believes his election was the moment the planet began to heal. Those European allies who were counting on a missile defense shield know about betrayals. Matt Damon’s “disappointed” heart can attest to broken relationships. And any lawyer, federal judge, or Constitution-carrying Teaparty activist can tell you the Obamacare Mandate is going to be an issue in the courts for some time to come. With over 600 million users and counting, Mark Zuckerberg should have already known this (there are a lot of angry Facebook status updates he has access to).

Why then, do tech-savvy Silicon Valley types support liberal politicians? Entrepreneurs, investors, and small business risk takers are rewarded by the free market while being told “at some point I think you’ve made enough money” by sitting presidents—yet they continue to support the same ideology that demonizes them. The conservative believes Mark Zuckerberg knows how best to invest Mark Zuckerberg’s money. Mark Zuckerberg bizarrely intimates that the government knows how to best invest Mark Zuckerberg’s money!

A Democratic Party activist attributes the good will in part to Bill Clinton, who “is really the one that tilled this soil in Silicon Valley before anyone else, and it proved to be very beneficial…” Tilling and seeding metaphors are sadly appropriate for the former president, but those in the know will tell you that the tech sector owes much more to Ronald Reagan than to any advocate of liberal public policy.

Putting aside the social network CEO’s motivations, the question remains: what kind of questions will the forum permit? As of now there are “tens of thousands” of them. It shouldn’t be hard to find a few that will force the president to refrain from soaring vagueness and respond straightforwardly. If that doesn’t happen, Facebook news feeds will let us know about it. And for that, at least, we can thank Mark Zuckerberg.

Pakistan Calls for Mark Zuckerberg’s Head. De-Friendings Expected.

Apparently, Pakistan is intent on winning the “Allies” Who Want to Kill You Award. They’re  backing up their “holy war against websites” threats by calling for the head of Mark Zuckerberg:

“Muhammad Azhar Siddique filed an application for a First Information Report (FIR), claiming that the owners of Facebook had committed a heinous and serious crime under Section 295-C of the Pakistan Penal Code. In essence, an FIR launches a criminal investigation. But no charges have been filed.

According to the paper, Section 295-C of the penal code reads: ‘Use of derogatory remark etc, in respect of the Holy Prophet, whoever by words, either spoken or written, or by visible representation, or by any imputation, innuendo, or insinuation, directly or indirectly, defiles the sacred name of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (Peace Be Upon Him) shall be punished with death, or imprisonment for life, and shall also be liable for fine.’

…The site also says that the Deputy Attorney General told the High Court that Pakistan’s United Nations representative has asked to escalate the issue in the UN General Assembly. (emphasis added)

Remember: this is a country that is an “essential” ally in our fight against

Mark Zuckerberg: I'd continue my presentation, but these angry Pakistani guys keep trying to kill me. Can you guys issue a fatwa for someone else's head so I can finish?

worldwide terrorism (or “man-made disasters” if you work in the State Department). However, it might be worth looking into a Plan B when a key ally seems to draft their penal code after the voiceover material provided by jihadi head-chopper snuff videos.  One might conclude that Pakistan’s ruling body isn’t so much against the worldview the permeates terrorist training camps in its ungovernable tribal regions as much as it’s against not controlling when and how insane Islamic radical edicts are doled out.

I’ve written about the Dawn of the Dead nature of a citizenry that goes ballistic over “any imputation, innuendo, or insinuation,” but I can’t help but revisit the topic on a regular basis because a.) Pakistan keeps proving a certified jihad-crazy club card is hidden in its back pocket, and b.) The average American doesn’t know how many billions of dollars we’ve supplied our “allies”.  Allies who only deliver big fish terrorist bottom feeders when their back is against the wall.

It says quite a bit about any culture, country, religion, or political party that would execute people over an insinuation.  The next time your liberal friend tells you that all cultures are the same and need to be embraced, ask them to touch down in Pakistan and break out a collection of South Park videos. If they make it out alive after the feeding frenzy for infidel flesh, ask them if they still feel the same way.  My guess is…they won’t.

Painting “Mohammed at 1000 Meters” May Cause Holy War: “Dot Heard ‘Round The World.”

It looks as though the Pakistani users of Farmville can rest easy, as Facebook is once again operating lawfully within the country:

LAHORE, Pakistan – Pakistan lifted a ban on Facebook on Monday after officials from the social networking site apologized for a page deemed offensive to Muslims and removed its contents, a top information technology official said…

“In response to our protest, Facebook has tendered their apology and informed us that all the sacrilegious material has been removed from the URL,” said Najibullah Malik, secretary of Pakistan’s information technology ministry, referring to the technical term for a Web page.
Facebook assured the Pakistani government that “nothing of this sort will happen in the future,” Malik said.

Let me translate this for my readers: Facebook has joined a long list of Westerners who subscribe to the dhimmitude way of life. Paging George Ramero…Paging George Romero… we have plenty of fodder for your next social critique using zombies (pick the dhimmis or the extremists).

How can Facebook assure Pakistan “nothing of this sort” will happen again,

Pakistani imams: Those cute little pigs you got going on in Farmville? Yeah, those offend us too. They gotta go. This ain't over, Facebook. Not by a long shot.

when no one knows what will set these nutcases off? These are the same people who threaten to kill cartoonists over material that offends them. These are the same people who have killed movie makers over material that offends them (as Hollywood sits silently by).

If, hypothetically, I started a Facebook Page titled: “I like Tasty, Tasty, pork…and Pakistani Muslims Should Too!” what would happen? Would the mere fact that I suggested they like something that isn’t in accordance with their religion warrant some sort of protest?

What if I started a contest to find out what the minimum threshold needed to cause riots in Pakistan was? In some sense, we need answers to these questions. We need to find the boundaries of what’s acceptable to them. We already know that Mohammed in a Bear Suit (who actually turned out to be Santa Claus) is out of the question. Does that mean “the insinuation that Mohammed was in a Bear Suit” is what’s really out of the question?

Or perhaps I shouldn’t. Things could get out of hand rather quickly:

The Facebook controversy sparked a handful of protests across Pakistan, many by student members of radical Islamic groups. Some of the protesters carried signs advocating holy war against the website for allowing the page.

I would really hate it if a “holy war” started because of little old me. What if WordPress got dragged into it as well for even allowing such ruminations to begin with? Sad, but fascinating…

What if I painted a dot on the horizon titled “Mohammed at 1000 Meters”? Would that inflame imams in the tribal areas of Pakistan? I’m not sure, but I think the psychological profiles we can glean from their reaction would be priceless. I almost think sociologists should pay me for coming up with such a novel idea. When I’m dead (perhaps due to a fatwa placed on me by extremist groups?), I hope I appear in the 32rd edition of whatever sociology book my alma mater, USC, requires.

Instead of “The Shot Heard ‘Round The World” my depiction of Mohammed at 1000 meters will be forever referred to as “The Dot Heard ‘Round The World.”

I suppose that would negate all the good will the President’s muslim outreach garned, huh? Oh, wait…it never really materialized to begin with.

Up Next: Pakistan to Freak Over Stick Figure Prophet Flip Books.

Although I’ve been too busy to blog, I haven’t been too busy to let the Draw Mohammad Day Facebook flap escape my radar. Personally, I think it’s interesting that Pakistan can’t control its own borders, lets jihadi head-choppers roam free, can’t stop them from training Faisal Shahzad-bags for Times Square bomb plots…and yet, when it comes to banning facebook—they’re on the case! It’s actually rather fascinating to know that if I drew Stick Figure Mohammad that I might be subject to death threats and fatwas and whatever else Islamic Rage Boy has in store for infidels like me.

Cartoons...make...me...ANGRY! ARRRRG!

There’s a part of me that wants to publish a flip book of Stick Figure Mohammad pole vaulting over famous landmarks, birthday cakes, and unicorns. He’d be completely indistinguishable from other stick men except I would call him Mohammad. And, if the outrage was outrageously outrageous enough I could apologize to members of a certain community for “offending” anyone (Even though, quite frankly, I find it offensive when people fly jetliners into large metropolitan areas and kill 3,000 individuals in the name of prophets banned from flip books).

Here’s the deal: When certain people stop strapping explosives to their groin in an attempt to kill innocent civilians I’ll start caring about campaigns that pop up on facebook. Or, when people stop threatening the South Park creators with an untimely death over a cartoon, I’ll stop playing the tiny violin between my thumb and forefinger.

Note to Pakistan: Come talk to me when Mehsud is dead. Otherwise, deal with it.

Do you know what this is? It's the world's tiniest violin...playing just for Islamic Rage Boy.