On Mon, Jun 29, 2020 at 10:51 AM Giampaolo Rodola' firstname.lastname@example.org wrote:
On Mon, Jun 29, 2020 at 12:34 PM Nathaniel Smith email@example.com wrote:
On Mon, Jun 29, 2020 at 2:31 AM Steve Holden firstname.lastname@example.org wrote:
The commit message used, however, reveals implementation details of the
change which are irrelevant to the stated aim, which is making the documentation clear and concise. Use of such language is certainly regrettable, since it carries with it the implication that the Python developer community has somehow been wilfully sanctioning "relics of white supremacy" up until the change was made.
There certainly is a place in tech for politics, as I have argued many
times, and I am sure nobody wishes to continue to use language that might be offensive to readers. But I would suggest that the politics can safely be omitted from commit messages, since they can only properly be fully addressed in the conversation about the PR in advance. The wording of the commit message has the appearance (probably specious) of wanting to rub former misdeeds in the face of a largely innocent community, and that is the principal reason I found it distasteful and unnecessary.
I just re-read the commit message, and I think you're being oversensitive and imagining things that aren't there. The actual commit message is written in a straightforward and factual way, and spends special effort on *absolving* the community of this kind of guilt.
"The community" has nothing to be absolved of, "Strunk & White" has nothing to do with white supremacy and there is no guilt. If you feel guilty because you're white then that's your problem. I don't feel guilty for being white, the same way a black person should not feel guilty for being black. And I have literally ZERO excuses to make to you or anybody else in here because I'm white. Assuming guilt based on the color of your skin and constantly attacking that specific group because of that is racist. It's that simple. I find it astonishing how some people here don't seem to realize that (or pretend not to).
And what's the goal anyway? Make us all feel guilty, create yet another heated discussion, widen divisions, wait for the occasional folks who dare to speak up against this vitriol and kick them out? And then what? What is the plan here exactly? Don't you folks realize this is a technical forum? Don't you understand how inappropriate it is to constantly bring up these kinds of messages up here, and force people to either witness them silently for fear of repercussions, or to engage in the discussion and risk paying the consequences in terms of work / hiring / career / status / reputation etc.? Because that's what happens, and we all know it. This is a very public forum and we can all be traced back to here. There are professionals here, people who go to conferences and/or make a living out of Python, who pay the rent and support their family with it, and that don't want to be put in this position.
It does not scale. It will never scale. Because whether we like it or not we have to coexist together in this virtual space, including with people we don't like. And this is why it is such a good idea to leave politics out of the door and only stay focused on Python. We will still have different opinions and occasional clashes, but as long as they are technical they will be genuine, prolific and everything will be fine as it was before "this" started (I've been reading this list for 12 years now). Discussing politics, on the other hand, will only keep bringing conflict over and over again. There's tons of proof of this already, and I can't envision a different outcome in the long run. Because most of us are not OK with being put against a wall and being blamed for "supremacy", "guilt", "privilege" or whatever term you have in your jargon. I certainly am not. Furthermore, that jargon makes no sense outside of the US and it's just ridiculous. I'm European, am split between living here and in Asia, and I can guarantee you that much.
Please, stop this.
Giampaolo - gmpy.dev https://gmpy.dev/about
The above response is how I feel about this. There is palpable fear right now that anyone who disagrees that these political types of discussion have a place in the professional world will be ostracized. I fear it even writing this short email. And that fear is more than warranted.
The laudable goals of inclusion in the python community, which I support, are not being served by bringing these politically motivated changes-- a perfect example of which is this latest claim that S&W, an utterly inoffensive English language standard that itself has nothing to do with white supremacy, is a "relic of white supremacy" that has been place for two (or nearly two) decades in the core python founding PEPs, etc., and the absurd claim that it is hurtful in some way to non-white people, and these sorts of claims not only going unchallenged but even in some ways encouraged at the top of the leadership-- to the fore. It is divisive, and it makes me want to not want to be a part of the community because of 1. fear that I will pay dearly if I speak up (happily I'm not a developer although I've thought about a career change, but probably I can kiss that goodbye after this email) and 2. it is extremely unpleasant to have no realm of life-- not technical/professional, not sports, not even church-- in which the American politics that permeate all of life these days (and seems to be reaching its tendrils across the water into other countries) can be put to the side.
I'm tired. Please, please think about how we can make the focus of this community be technical considerations.