It Needs to End

Discussion in 'Et Cetera, Et Cetera' started by amhersthungboi, Mar 24, 2008.

  1. amhersthungboi

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    This is a letter I recently sent to a moderator. I am posting in the forum for rational, polite discussion. If the moderators can't help us, we need to do it ourselves:

    This is my first time contacting a moderator, so please forgive me if this isn't the correct format.

    I don't mind the on-going Obama/Clinton debate ... it is one that is going on nationally and internationally, and is important. However, what is irritating is when critique of a candidate (be it that candidate's character, experience, or policy) is rebutted with personal attacks on the intelligence and character of the person making the critique. I have, as much as possible, tried to focus on my qualms with the other candidate, and the reasons for my preferences for my candidate. I attempted not to resort to questioning people's intelligence, as has been frequently the case in other posts.

    It seems as though everyone is missing the point that events and speeches can be interpreted differently, and those different interpretations are certainly up for debate and critique. However, when posters are calling all those who do not agree with them stupid, it stifles debate and causes hurt.

    I am not perfect in this regard, and for my contributions in making the atmosphere more tense or too personal, I do apologize. It is an emotional and personal issue for many, as elections should be. However, it just seems to be going too far, getting too mean-spirited and personal, and ultimately losing track of the election, issues, and candidates and becoming too focused on "us" versus "them".

    I honestly can't say how I would suggest proceeding. Perhaps it may be useful in laying out ground rules for these political threads which will, probably, go on until November and beyond. Top of the ground rules should simply be no personal attacks ... it should be obvious in an adult conversation, but it doesn't seem to be. Again, I apologize if it seems like I'm tying to tell yo how to do your job -- that isn't the intent.

    I have enjoyed LPSG. Though I am not as regular a visitor as some others, it has been a fun environment through which I have been able to talk to a number of people about a range of topics, including politics. However, when the political becomes mean and personal, that fun ends, and something needs to be done.

    Sorry for the extremely long message,
    AHB
     
  2. HazelGod

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    Wow, the pinnacle of irony.

    Defeated and having no leg to stand on, the Clinton campaign has restored to pressuring the party authorities to revisit the rules of engagement in an attempt to turn the tide back in her favor.

    I am utterly unsurprised to see the same tactic attempted by one of her supporters when faced with similar circumstances.

    My response is that you've made your bed...now lie in it.
     
  3. amhersthungboi

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    This is exactly what I am talking about.

    Do you feel it contributes to the conversation to call those who disagree with you:

    tiny minded or small minded

    An idiot with no reading comprehension
    abilities


    A fucking attention whore

    Puerile

    Obtuse douchebags

    The list could go on. Now, for my part ,I do apologise for returning your retort; I should have risen above it. Now, can you apologise for these numerous insults?
     
  4. Principessa

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  5. HazelGod

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    I stand behind the statements I've made...though I will point out that here I've done nothing more than parallel your behavior to that of your candidate's campaign. That you interpreted such as being a personal denigration of your character is rather telling.

    If you feel my remarks are in any way unfounded, incorrect, or out of line, then you are free, of course, to prove such if you're able...or you can choose to ignore them.

    It is my opinion, however, that much of the present furor has arisen from deliberate baiting by parties who are interested in the campaigns only as a means to exploit strife...some to a greater degree than others. I am not above calling out such intellectual dishonesty when I see it. I say again...you, collectively, have made your bed, and this appeal of yours to the staff reeks of cowardice.
     
  6. amhersthungboi

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    So, in other words, no, you can not have a political discussion without insulting people?
     
  7. HazelGod

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    Did I say that? No, strawman, I didn't. No need for "other words." The ones I use are chosen for their meaning.
     
  8. amhersthungboi

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    Calling out intellectual dishonesty and outright insulting people are two completely different things. Pointing out areas of intellectual disagreement (I wouldn't call it dishonesty) can be done with tact and respect, without the need to denigrate other members and those with whom you disagree. Calling people "idiots" "whores" and "small minded" is indefensible.
     
  9. HazelGod

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    Let's just say that you and I disagree on that last bit. Intellectual disagreement is one thing, but deliberate mendacity is another entirely. Some may choose to argue dispassionately. I may even, on occasion, choose that path myself. I reserve the right to judge for myself when it's prudent to address either behavior or reasoning...although when the one is absent, little choice remains. I also reserve the right to determine the appropriate nature of a response, impassioned or otherwise, in whatever language I desire.

    I'll reiterate: if you have issue with anything I've said or any label I've leveled at someone, then present your proof that I was wrong. Or ignore it. But don't think for a moment that I'm going to refrain from calling out idiocy by its name simply to preserve your sense of decorum...because despite what you might think, I couldn't care less about your opinion of my tact. Or lack thereof.

    FYI, it's generally considered a hallmark of a narrow mind to operate in absolutes. You might want to be more careful with terms like "indefensible" in the future.
     
  10. amhersthungboi

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    I would argue it is equally narrow or small minded to resort to insults in debate, rather than maintaining respect and decorum, whatever your beliefs. If your point can't be made without insulting someone, then perhaps it doesn't need to be made.
     
  11. HazelGod

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    As I said earlier, the choice of responding to either person or reason, and the manner in which such is delivered, is mine and mine alone to make. The one is not necessarily exclusive of the other...so if you choose to interpret a personal invective as a means of resort, then you do so at your own peril. Feel free to limit yourself in whatever manner you wish, but don't presume to force the same onto me. It won't happen.
     
  12. mrpond

    mrpond New Member

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    Please say what you mean in one sentence - cut to the chase.
     
  13. Lex

    Lex
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    Or you could put on another on ignore and/or pull away from the debate, instead of asking for intervention. Aren't we adults here?
     
  14. Gonzo3

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    AWWWWWWWWW guys kiss and make up lifes to short.......:kiss:...PEACE...OUT...:smile:
     
  15. ManlyBanisters

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    Ignore can, it seems, be useful to some - though personally I never use it and I think ignoring people who disagree with you isn't quite as adult you say, Lex (ever heard of "keep your friends close...") - but each to their own.

    But in this situation I do agree with Lex - and with the OP (to an extent). HG, you are getting too personal - I know that is your posting style and how you are here but really, you're coming across badly. It is possible to disagree with someone without calling them an idiot - you idiot :wink: :tongue:

    amherst - I don't think HG and you are going to see eye to eye here. Perhaps you should follow Lex's advice and ignore him. Either that or ignore the 'personal' bits of his posts and answer only the on-topic bits. Though, for myself, I'd much rather see a healthy political debate where personal insults don't enter into it at all.
     
  16. SpeedoMike

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    :eek:fftopic:my opinion :hijacked:
     
  17. uniquelymemethinks

    uniquelymemethinks New Member

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    listen to gonzo and speedomike
     
  18. dong20

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    I agree, mostly. Though 'ignore' seems like an admission of failure to try and resolve differences, some differences may be irreconcilable.

    HG, you have stated your position on Obama and Wright's alleged 'influence' on him. It's a position with which I mostly agree. You have also stated that you cannot properly explain exactly why you 'believe' in Obama, and that you are willing to risk being wrong about him on a largely intuitive basis.

    There's nothing wrong with that in any way, but it begs the question of whether you have perhaps lost some objectivity regarding this aspect at least. Especially so in respect of one or two particular posters, and they know who they are.

    I've already argued that guilt by association (whether applied to Obama, Clinton or McCain) is at best a flawed strategy. As an outside observer - while undeniably less informed - I believe I'm fairly objective about this election I do believe these threads are becoming far too personal.

    They seem less and less about open minded rational discussion of personal differences in political ideology and the events surrounding an election the outcome of which will likely affect all of us - and more increasingly focussed on dogmatic interpretation of minutiae and scoring points by linking to video or other 'evidence' of alleged malfeasance. I've done it once myself to illustrate it's futility.

    It would be nice, if at least some of the discussions were able to avoid mirroring the unsavoury tactics that have been and will no doubt again be employed later in the actual campaign. One can only hope.
     
  19. D_Kaye Throttlebottom

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    It's a little difficult for one to take a lecture about civility in debate from the source that historically attacks Obama's character (he's plagarizing his own co-chair, is not experienced enough to answer a phone at 3am, he's cut his own face w/ Rev. Wright) and projects that it is Obama that is out to get Hillary. Name one attack he has made on her character? Historically Obama has been passive when she makes accusations about him. Even he defends himself against her dishonest representations of his character.

    So when you gloss over that you've brought personal attacks of Obama here and then have a reveleation that "we" should moderate ourselves to participate in a civil manner, it's going to fall on deaf ears. Maybe you introduce your topic on the issues and limit it to the issues, not the latest spin, to avoid being skewered for dishonest arguments.
     
  20. Lex

    Lex
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    To clarify: I don't put people on ignore that I disagree with. To the contrary, there are many here with whom I disagree and never ignore and even debate and post quite frequently. That being said, using the ignore button on someone with whom you have had heated debate can serve to allow you both some time to cool off. I am not advocating that someone be placed on ignore forever--as little as a day can sometimes make a huge difference.

    And my adult remark was more in line with "calling the moderators for help when there are other things one can do to make an argument stop" than with the fact that using the ignore button is or isn't, in and of itself, adult behavior.
     
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