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Lack of condemnation doesn't equal approval

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I still haven't finished writing any of the real blog posts I want to write about the Hugo situation. For now, just wanted to comment on one trope I've seen a few times now from people opposed to the Puppies slates (as I am): the idea that Sad Puppies supporters must explicitly disavow the Rabid Puppies, or else it's reasonable to assume that the SPs support the RPs. For example, George RR Martin recently wrote to Larry Correia: “we take your silence and lack of condemnation against the hate mongers as tacit approval.”

But I get pretty uncomfortable around any claim that a failure to explicitly, loudly, and publicly disavow something is the same as supporting it. Lately, the context where I've most often seen that is the people who've been saying that all moderate Muslims must explicitly disavow Muslim terrorists, or else it's reasonable to assume that they support them. (See also Jacquielynn Floyd's rebuttal to that trope.) I've also seen that idea in various non-Islam-related contexts, including criticisms of me or people like me.

There are differences among people who support one or both of the Puppies slates, just as there are differences among those of us who are unhappy with the Puppies slates. I would be happy if more people were to make explicitly clear that they don't support or agree with Vox Day, but I'm not going to assume that anyone who doesn't do that must support and agree with him. And I'm not going to assume that just because I haven't seen a lot of the Sad Puppies supporters disavow the Rabid Puppies slate, that none of them are doing so.

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