Once Upon A Time...when we were civil
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31-08-2015, 10:50 PM
RE: Once Upon A Time...when we were civil
(31-08-2015 09:49 PM)GirlyMan Wrote:  
(31-08-2015 09:16 PM)The Drake Wrote:  Perhaps I'm being idealistically nostalgic (selective memory ?). But I do remember a time when I could debate the issues of atheism/theology, science/religion, and fact/faith without resorting to the name calling...liberal vs conservative...divisive BS into which THE conversation has degenerated. Issues once debated in a civil manner by great minds have now become petty bickering points in a seemingly endless US vs THEM mentality. Your thoughts and comments, please.




Idealistically nostalgic, offensive (to some), but at the time it was a catalyst to get us "common folk" talking about issues that we didn't...or couldn't...talk about. Prep for a world that is much different than it was then.

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31-08-2015, 11:09 PM
RE: Once Upon A Time...when we were civil
(31-08-2015 09:52 PM)houseofcantor Wrote:  
(31-08-2015 09:42 PM)The Drake Wrote:  You touched on exactly what I was thinking. It's not a bad thing per se. We have enabled the great "UNWASHED MASSES" (myself included) to join the conversation. But instead of some "GLORIOUS COMING TOGETHER" we have this increasing polarization. Why ? What is the cause ? The interwebs ? Perhaps the access to unlimited information validating our own beliefs ?

Anonymity, perhaps, and distance. Also, because people suck. Big Grin

Anonymity yes. Cultural differences...YES. Maybe I'm optimistic. IDK. I lived in a multi-faith environment as a teenager and the LAST thing each of us though of was the other ones faith. It came up a few times.

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31-08-2015, 11:09 PM
RE: Once Upon A Time...when we were civil
(31-08-2015 09:20 PM)houseofcantor Wrote:  Then the Internet happened.

Respectfully, I disagree in the strongest possible terms. Yes, the internet has made a great many morons more visible, and allowed more voices to join in all sorts of conversations, but those voices were always there.

As crazy as our political and civil discourse have become in this day and age, our tendency toward idyllic thinking does not conform to the facts. Like per capita crime rates have dropped from the Leave it to Beaver days, yet people think it's now worse because of all the news coverage, similar rules apply to political and social discourse. People can fact-check what you say, now, and this leads to only two categories of troll: the cautious and the busted.

It's too late in the evening, and I'm about to go to bed, so I'm not going to dig it up... but those of you with Google should look into some history websites on political (rancor, lies, smear, and mudslinging) campaigns in the early years of our democratic republic, through some of the more contentious arguments of their day, and the campaigns that went along with them.

Just read some of the essays and OpEds published in papers or spoken by politicians during the collapse of the economy, through the Depression, and on into the New Deal. It will blow your mind, some of the things that they said, in a time when it was unheard of to even swear in public.

"Theology made no provision for evolution. The biblical authors had missed the most important revelation of all! Could it be that they were not really privy to the thoughts of God?" - E. O. Wilson
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31-08-2015, 11:18 PM
RE: Once Upon A Time...when we were civil
To put it another way, 150 years ago, without the help of the Internet, Americans got so mad about their political and social discourse that they all decided to shoot at one another. We've had riots in the street and looting and so on since before the Revolutionary War, and ever since.

The Christians might rumble a lot about abortion or us damned, dirty apes (atheists), but I don't see a Civil War about to kick off, and I can point to a dozen things in any basic American History book that are worse than anything happening in the Age of Google, at least within civilized borders.

"Theology made no provision for evolution. The biblical authors had missed the most important revelation of all! Could it be that they were not really privy to the thoughts of God?" - E. O. Wilson
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31-08-2015, 11:19 PM
RE: Once Upon A Time...when we were civil
(31-08-2015 09:16 PM)The Drake Wrote:  Perhaps I'm being idealistically nostalgic (selective memory ?). But I do remember a time when I could debate the issues of atheism/theology, science/religion, and fact/faith without resorting to the name calling...liberal vs conservative...divisive BS into which THE conversation has degenerated. Issues once debated in a civil manner by great minds have now become petty bickering points in a seemingly endless US vs THEM mentality. Your thoughts and comments, please.

What country are you refering to, mate?

NOTE: Member, Tomasia uses this site to slander other individuals. He then later proclaims it a joke, but not in public.
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31-08-2015, 11:24 PM
RE: Once Upon A Time...when we were civil
(31-08-2015 11:09 PM)RocketSurgeon76 Wrote:  
(31-08-2015 09:20 PM)houseofcantor Wrote:  Then the Internet happened.

Respectfully, I disagree in the strongest possible terms. Yes, the internet has made a great many morons more visible, and allowed more voices to join in all sorts of conversations, but those voices were always there.

As crazy as our political and civil discourse have become in this day and age, our tendency toward idyllic thinking does not conform to the facts. Like per capita crime rates have dropped from the Leave it to Beaver days, yet people think it's now worse because of all the news coverage, similar rules apply to political and social discourse. People can fact-check what you say, now, and this leads to only two categories of troll: the cautious and the busted.

It's too late in the evening, and I'm about to go to bed, so I'm not going to dig it up... but those of you with Google should look into some history websites on political (rancor, lies, smear, and mudslinging) campaigns in the early years of our democratic republic, through some of the more contentious arguments of their day, and the campaigns that went along with them.

Just read some of the essays and OpEds published in papers or spoken by politicians during the collapse of the economy, through the Depression, and on into the New Deal. It will blow your mind, some of the things that they said, in a time when it was unheard of to even swear in public.

I understand your frustration, but calling people morons puts a stop to your argument and is exactly the type of uncivil discourse I was referencing. While your other arguments may be valid, I cannot ascribe to that method.

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31-08-2015, 11:27 PM
RE: Once Upon A Time...when we were civil
(31-08-2015 10:38 PM)morondog Wrote:  Issues debated by great minds huh?

Once upon a time there was some obligation to take the twits seriously. Then a bunch of their stronger arguments got dismantled, so the only twits left were the dumbasses who didn't get it. Unfortunately the remaining dumbasses a. are politically powerful b. cannot be reasoned with in elegant sentences. Therefore the debate descended to their level.

Point taken. But have we/them really come to the point that we have to be asses about it ?

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31-08-2015, 11:30 PM (This post was last modified: 31-08-2015 11:34 PM by RocketSurgeon76.)
RE: Once Upon A Time...when we were civil
I didn't call anyone a moron. I said it has made a great many morons more visible.

Edit to Add: Hooray! This is my 2000th post.

"Theology made no provision for evolution. The biblical authors had missed the most important revelation of all! Could it be that they were not really privy to the thoughts of God?" - E. O. Wilson
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31-08-2015, 11:38 PM
RE: Once Upon A Time...when we were civil
(31-08-2015 11:19 PM)Banjo Wrote:  
(31-08-2015 09:16 PM)The Drake Wrote:  Perhaps I'm being idealistically nostalgic (selective memory ?). But I do remember a time when I could debate the issues of atheism/theology, science/religion, and fact/faith without resorting to the name calling...liberal vs conservative...divisive BS into which THE conversation has degenerated. Issues once debated in a civil manner by great minds have now become petty bickering points in a seemingly endless US vs THEM mentality. Your thoughts and comments, please.

What country are you refering to, mate?

I guess it could be ANY country

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31-08-2015, 11:51 PM
RE: Once Upon A Time...when we were civil
(31-08-2015 11:09 PM)RocketSurgeon76 Wrote:  this leads to only two categories of troll: the cautious and the busted.

I'm smelling one of those categories.

The "why can't we all just respect everyone's opinions?" trolls are the worst of them all. People who whine about me being uncivil when I just called a guy out for saying that "2+2=5" as if he came up with the maths himself, rather than the guy who is being a jerk by posting deliberate misinformation and illogic, because "it's his opinion" are fucking scum.

And I'm not going to pretend otherwise. If a person is intellectually honest, respects others by listening and presenting good arguments, then I will be kind to them even when I disagree with them strongly. (You can see an example of this in the last thread in which you participated, TheDrake, about police as aggressors or victims, in which I got into a knock-down, drag-out fight with Goodwithoutgod, yet he and I remained civil and remain fond of one another to this day.) On the other hand, you need only browse through the last 48 hours of posts to see me excoriate a troll of the "busted" variety. If someone tells me that I have to be nice to those types, or "respect" their demonstrably false and ridiculous opinions, then they are the other type of troll.

The type of troll who does real damage to civil discourse is the one who suggests that "civil" means "not calling anyone any mean things or hurting any feelings" and/or "respecting even the most idiotic and falsifiable beliefs as if they have merit just because a person advanced them".

"Theology made no provision for evolution. The biblical authors had missed the most important revelation of all! Could it be that they were not really privy to the thoughts of God?" - E. O. Wilson
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