Sunday, September 2, 2007

"Do Unto Others. . ."

I've been watching the lying and distortions of viewpoints that goes on over at Vox's on a regular basis. Someone will sniff the air for signs of an opportunity to attack Vox, then go straight for the jugular. Invariably, these people fail, and end up looking like idiots, as a special bonus. With few exceptions, the "brights" who engage in this sort of debating tactic are secular-minded individuals. In my admittedly limited experience, the more secular someone is, the less problematic he finds outright dishonesty. I've dealt with it first-hand in the blogosphere, and I've witnessed others enduring the same nonsense.

My blogging philosophy is pretty simple: allow people freedom to express their views, even if they diverge widely from my own. I don't ban people or censor their ideas for the atrocity of disagreeing with me.

If you come here and behave in a respectful manner, and at least make an attempt at understanding what I'm saying, we'll have no trouble getting along. On the other hand, my pet peeve is when someone lies or deliberately misrepresents my viewpoint. I've been cursed at, lied to, called names, had my views twisted beyond recognition, and mocked; somehow, I've yet to banish anyone. However, I also don't treat people who sink this low with kid gloves.

In the end, it's all about common courtesy. How you treat people in the "real" world is how you should behave online. Those words typed in little comment boxes that pop up on your screen came from flesh-and-blood people, not ghosts in the machine.

My belief is that those who carry the biggest chip on their shoulders online are the most docile creatures in person. Either that, or they're the ones who sport the most scars.

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