LogicalFallacy

Tolerance vs intolerance - where is the middle ground?

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7 hours ago, disillusioned said:

This has relevance to the conversation we had a while ago about generalisations. You'll recall that I said that people don't like to be put into boxes, but that anyone will fit inside a box if it is large enough. I also said that we aren't that special, much as we might like to think that we are. The relevance is this: yes, ex-Christians in general go through some typical stages. But they don't always go through them all, and they don't always go through them in the same order. The box needs to be a little larger than that. But even better yet, I think we could dispense with the box altogether in this case. I'm not sure that it is particularly helpful to treat people who we are trying to connect with as if we are trying to classify them. We may find that that is an approach which causes conversations to break down.

 

For the record, I certainly don't want you silenced.

 

I wouldn't think you'd want anyone here silenced. 

 

So basically going forward whether it's debatable or not, acting as though anyone might feel that they're "in training" could lead to people leaving. Point made. I'm not exactly married to putting them in that box anyways so it's easy to let that go. I've just noticed certain things about the way people act around here and there's a lot of wanting to apply the "helping ex christians" theme to leading people into all variety of directions, including not only atheistic and agnostic, or even pantheistic or panentheistic ones, but political directions as well. Which brings us to this thread of discussion. 

 

If ex christian doesn't mean atheist, nor does it mean leftist, liberal, or Democratic either. And perhaps that should be included in the statements as well. The people leaving have in common that they're upset about views they see as conservative and "racist," or "bigoted." And they want to shame these views and run around policing them from thread to thread. It has been stated that some of these opponents don't want people to get the "wrong idea" about ex -C. Or in a huff, proclaiming "let this place turn into a conservative cesspool." Followed by a rally to have something done about conservative sounding posters, being labeled "trolls." 

 

Altogether this makes for the very thing we've been discussing about thinking there's some 'ultimate goal' or path for ex christianity, which, denounces any type of spiritual thinking and even conservative thinking for that matter. And this same movement is behind the issue at hand about being intolerant of intolerance, bigoted against bigots, and other self contradictions that have been outlined so far. This all being waged from a platform of perceived intellectual and moral superiority, back by science and academia and so forth. 

 

My responses to this initial problem that I've seen arising lately consist of some "outside of the box" thinking on my part, as a fellow atheist and center, left of center personality.

 

Are the so called intellectuals really being all that intellectual about this, all things considered? 

 

Are the so called moral high grounders really on moral high ground all things considered? 

 

Do they reflect a sense of leaving Christianity but still retaining the mentality of isolating and punishing those who think outside of the accepted orthodoxy (left bent, materialistic, atheist and agnostic)? 

 

I've pushed back at this (as a peer, as one of these atheistic, center or left center people) and then you've pushed back at me, for pushing back at this. 

 

Let's keep track of how this unfolded and where we're at right now. 

 

We've discussed where I need to back off and be more fair, perhaps less cocky and arrogant, and try not to commit any self contradiction on my end. So now let's talk about how the people I've been critiquing (my atheist peers) may need to back off and be more fair and balanced as well. Or do you feel that they don't need to do the same? With you being a thinker I doubt you adhere to the latter question. But I've proposed it just for the sake of proposing it. 

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On 6/16/2018 at 3:29 PM, end3 said:
On 6/16/2018 at 9:10 AM, florduh said:

This isn't difficult. The behavior that has driven away so many people is posts and topics that are intentionally inflammatory, insulting remarks and personal attacks. It's not about prohibited opinions but civility. Read the fucking rules.

Yes, but some of you are so fucking stupid...lol.  Sorry, I couldn't resist.  It's a control issue.  I'm working that out with the therapist...

 

Humor and sarcasm noted.  Enjoy your upvote!

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My synopsis of the thread thus far, to be freely ignored by those unconcerned by my opinion:

 

1) We all recognize that dissent and disagreements will happen, but we should be decent grown up people when we go about dissenting and disagreeing.   

 

2) Everyone's opinion is worth looking at.  This includes the rabid evil leftists that want to take everyone's rights away as well as the normal and fully matured righties that want to take everyone's rights away.   :)

 

3) As BAA so rightly often said (not in so many words), we should be aware of what the lurkers think of us.  I have to say I agree, but on the other hand, being in a Hebrews 12:1 situation (surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses) is very uncomfortable whether in a Christian or an Ex-Christian way.  Maybe this one doesn't belong in my synopsis...or does it?

 

4)  Good points can be buried and thus lost under a barrage of too many words. Just an observation. Salient points are salient. 

 

5)  We should, as Ex-Christians, no matter where we were in our thinking when we found this site understand that new people coming here deserve respect by any and all definitions discussed elsewhere. 

Having said that, I don't worry so much about them being snowflakes. Touchy, scared, vulnerable, 'convicted', unsure of themselves, scripture fulfilling last day reprobate Hell bent sinners that never thought they'd be one of those people,  or angry 'blasphemers' spreading their new found wings?   Sure, but they aren't delicate. They can read, and rules that we should follow can also be read by them. Anyone smart enough to see through Christianity can certainly find the appropriate sub-forums here where they can talk religion, and not politics, sex, and so on.

 

6)  To the OP, or rather, to the title of this thread:  

 

Tolerance is tolerance. Intolerance is not tolerance. Let me say that again: Tolerance is tolerance. Intolerance is not tolerance.  There is no middle ground.

People demanding tolerance must be tolerant. Otherwise they are intolerant themselves and have no standing to preach or teach tolerance.  This has been pointed out already in this thread by people other than me.

Any "middle ground" is at best a paradox, because a compromise only goes so far and implies both tolerance and intolerance at the same time. 

 

 

7)  The best we can do is look for truth, and there's no need to be assholes while doing so. 

At the same time, it's ok sometimes, and in the right places to have some fun. Atheists need to remember that in 5 billion years or so the sun will burn out, and those of you that will live forever will wish you had Jesus in your hearts when that happens.  I know I will!

 

 

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Okay, y'all, I made it to almost the end of page 6 over the span of several days. I have been reading, thinking, liking posts, thinking some more, considering.....etc. I'm sure you're all really holding your breath hah. I'm confused about what to address, so I'm kinda referencing the OP with regard to freedom of speech, bigotry, etc. I think this site should be able to do whatever they want, mod-wise.....but we do run the risk of an echo chamber and we also run the risk of other people leaving who won't bend over for the evil commies. :P 

 

I want so badly for everyone to feel this sincerity, I am doing my best to listen and hear what you're saying, not just fight. I'm trying to get it, to consider your perspective. I am (most of the time) INFJ-T (I get INTJ enough to be relevant) which has been brought into this discussion. I know that this is not much of a science, but I do think it helps to see what kinds of things people value or whatever. I'm a weird ass blend of getting my feelings hurt easily and not giving a fuck. I think, ultimately "truth" should be pursued at the cost of feelings, but that being said, feelings are important too and they shouldn't just be written off. That puts me in a weird spot when my defense of free speech sometimes bites me in the ass. It really can hurt. It hurts my feelings most when people assume something from things I don't say or intend. I don't mean that in a trivial way either. I come off like a firecracker sometimes sure, but I do sincerely feel hurt when something I put a lot of thought into is written off or dismissed or misrepresented to mean something else. I think many of us understand this hurt or frustration. If something I never intended hurts another person, I feel like a piece of shit for hurting someone else and then feel even shittier that I was taken for the kind of person to actually try to hurt or demean a fellow person. I have no intention of ever using my words to purposefully hurt. I think it is important for y'all to hear that just because I, since I can only speak for myself, really and truly sympathize with some proposed concerns. 

 

- I don't want the newly deconverted to leave or never join because they are turned off by aspects of this site

- I don't want someone from LGBTQ+ (or any marginalized group really) to experience nastiness from other people in our species

- I don't want free speech, in general, to be abused by those who want to prove a point that they can use whatever the hell words they want

- I don't want to hurt other people, in general, lol.

- I want progress, I want the world to get better for all of us

 

We can truly agree on some of these concerns and fears, I just disagree with some other suggested problems and I also eschew the proposed solution of increased modding or censorship of people in general. Not one of us has ANY right to monitor the thoughts or speech of another, though this site can mod posts if they choose to do so. We cannot, as individuals, be responsible for everyone else's feelings all the time or see the future. It's exhausting to keep track of what offends who constantly, especially when you don't intend to do so ever. Furthermore, I'm confused about whether or not this is a "don't say hurtful things" discussion or not because it seems like a "don't critique [insert favored group here]" kind of discussion. I'm not sure which it is, but I'm certainly not trying to say hurtful things. I understand that many of you care deeply for people who are disenfranchised, that you want to be a voice for the unheard or to stand up against bullying because you are caring people. I find this admirable, deeply so. I think it's easy to misunderstand each other on this forum and I don't want to be misunderstood as saying something I'm not. Since I disagree fundamentally with some perspectives on this post about who is being oppressed and who isn't, where do we go from here? If some of you think, because I have voiced strongly anti-feminist opinions, that I am bullying a fellow woman for her opinions....when I'm not.....then my feelings get hurt because I wasn't trying to bully anyone....no progress has been made....and now both parties are offended and defensive. If you want to stand up for the oppressed, and I agree, but you claim [insert group] is oppressed and I don't......now what? We can't just claim our opinion as the true one, nor can we just be expected to roll over, nor can we start personally attacking others for lack of education or understanding. Why is there not a call for thicker skin, why is censorship the only one being discussed here?

 

We, as a group, have a tendency to over exaggerate how perceived bad status quo or social change will play out, I see this everywhere. "The gays will destroy the American family," "letting black people or women vote is going to lead to the destruction of America," "the LGBTQ folks may as well be stoned if we do nothing," "The democrats are going to tax us until we're basically communists," "the republicans are capitalist racists who, if they're elected, are going to make abortion illegal again and seek profit at the expense of the middle class," "if we make alcohol legal, the sin and debauchery will cause the lord to smite us," "if we make weed legal, they're going to flaunt it in our faces and those potheads will go broke laying around nothing and it will give our kids cancer," "Hillary's going to sell us to the devil," "Trump's going to bomb or nuke everyone," I could go on. In general, our perceived causes and opinions aren't often right to the extent we think or predict they will be. Maybe, members of the LGBTQ+ community are JUST FINE with these discussions, maybe those who are offended should speak for themselves that they have been offended personally. Maybe we shouldn't generalize the LGBT community because they are made of individuals with different opinions. I know Stephen Fry is a liberal homosexual male who is vehement about the historical repercussions of silencing speech.  For those of you who identify with the term "feelers," I'm trying desperately to explain that it really seems like only the feelings of certain groups are valued or it feels like only certain people's rights are worth fighting for.  When one group is continuously seemingly shit on by another people groups on behalf of still others, what will eventually happen? No one gets heard, certain group opinions are favored, the ones not favored stop giving a fuck about the feelings of the ones everyone cares about.  It's like fuck any mildly conservative person's opinion, who cares if it hurts their feelings compared to gay people's. Fuck any white person's opinion, they've had long enough to speak. Fuck any man's opinion, it's the women's time to shine. I could go on. It seems to me that some peoples' values, which are mere opinions, include generalizing about the hypothetical feelings or degradation of perceived oppression in others. When that oppression is challenged, it's like people go on the attack. If this is not intended, I get that....but that is what people like me are experiencing or feeling.

 

Instead of arguing with me (though I'm open to criticism of course), can some of y'all just see how we got there? Can we maybe all just acknowledge the other's perspective, without saying "you're right or wrong?" Can some of y'all understand why some of us start to feel less inclined to consider the feelings of others when it feels like we just get shit on all the time? Especially when many of us are NOT GUILTY of doing what some members of that social group have done. If I do a long drawn out post such as this, responding with "You're just mad you can't tell n****r jokes," is your right ........ but that's just not true. And that's deeply, personally offensive to me. And you either care or you don't care. And if you decide that you do care, but not enough to change anything, why should I? And if I decide to tolerate your offensive untruths anyway, that would be the point, right? I've gotten over myself a little and accepted that you have meaningful values too, so why can't you (generic you btw) do the same? Why must I accept your assertions, even if facts say otherwise, because of how it could affect a certain group of people? What gives anyone the right to label anyone else, in general, instead of tackling bad ideas?! 

 

I can say MEAN things and not hate Christians.

I say NICE things and absolutely HATE Christians. 

I can joke about Christians and, ultimately, mean NO OFFENSE or HATE towards them. Funny shit is funny shit, ask John Crist lol.

 

I recognize that many of you believe words have real power, so....what do you make of my comments above? In my view.....nothing ultimately happens. When we agnostics/atheists band together, we can make social change. But my individual words used for "hate" aren't really doing much. If a Christian screams and hollers that I have offended them, what do I do then? Shutup and not critique their beliefs? Apologize? Have I learned any sort of lesson, or have I internalized some frustration? Was it because of a joke (that I still plan to make?) Does calling them "atheist phobic" do anything at all? Are we christianphobic because we disagree or have extreme and vocal distaste for its ideology? Or do you think we are all educated enough to know when we're being told some bullshit with which we disagree? Am I hateful or committing a hate crime by disagreeing with a christian? I think, when bad ideas are not dealt with but silenced, you end up with "hate groups" like the KKK. People learn to find people who think like them before they make the same joke they would have before, calling names or censorship does nothing.

 

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23 hours ago, Joshpantera said:

 

I wouldn't think you'd want anyone here silenced. 

 

So basically going forward whether it's debatable or not, acting as though anyone might feel that they're "in training" could lead to people leaving. Point made. I'm not exactly married to putting them in that box anyways so it's easy to let that go. I've just noticed certain things about the way people act around here and there's a lot of wanting to apply the "helping ex christians" theme to leading people into all variety of directions, including not only atheistic and agnostic, or even pantheistic or panentheistic ones, but political directions as well. Which brings us to this thread of discussion. 

 

If ex christian doesn't mean atheist, nor does it mean leftist, liberal, or Democratic either. And perhaps that should be included in the statements as well. The people leaving have in common that they're upset about views they see as conservative and "racist," or "bigoted." And they want to shame these views and run around policing them from thread to thread. It has been stated that some of these opponents don't want people to get the "wrong idea" about ex -C. Or in a huff, proclaiming "let this place turn into a conservative cesspool." Followed by a rally to have something done about conservative sounding posters, being labeled "trolls." 

 

Altogether this makes for the very thing we've been discussing about thinking there's some 'ultimate goal' or path for ex christianity, which, denounces any type of spiritual thinking and even conservative thinking for that matter. And this same movement is behind the issue at hand about being intolerant of intolerance, bigoted against bigots, and other self contradictions that have been outlined so far. This all being waged from a platform of perceived intellectual and moral superiority, back by science and academia and so forth. 

 

My responses to this initial problem that I've seen arising lately consist of some "outside of the box" thinking on my part, as a fellow atheist and center, left of center personality.

 

Are the so called intellectuals really being all that intellectual about this, all things considered? 

 

Are the so called moral high grounders really on moral high ground all things considered? 

 

Do they reflect a sense of leaving Christianity but still retaining the mentality of isolating and punishing those who think outside of the accepted orthodoxy (left bent, materialistic, atheist and agnostic)? 

 

I've pushed back at this (as a peer, as one of these atheistic, center or left center people) and then you've pushed back at me, for pushing back at this. 

 

Let's keep track of how this unfolded and where we're at right now. 

 

We've discussed where I need to back off and be more fair, perhaps less cocky and arrogant, and try not to commit any self contradiction on my end. So now let's talk about how the people I've been critiquing (my atheist peers) may need to back off and be more fair and balanced as well. Or do you feel that they don't need to do the same? With you being a thinker I doubt you adhere to the latter question. But I've proposed it just for the sake of proposing it. 

 

Some very good questions here. Regarding the bolded, are we talking about people backing off hard-line atheism in favour of a more open approach to spiritual topics, or people backing off hard-line political stances, or.... other stuff? Just curious.

 

In any case, I think you are correct. Others also need to back off. Basically, I think that we should all try to be as fair and balanced as possible. I say this secure in the knowledge that I have my own biases, and I am prone to taking a hard line from time to time, and when I do, you and my other fellow members will call me out if I go too far. Civil disagreement is something I value very highly indeed. But the civility bit matters. Now, personally, I have a pretty thick skin. You don't need to play nice around me. There are lots of others here that are the same. But not all. And that needs to be ok. One thing I've taken away from this discussion so far is that there has to be room for sensitivity. It doesn't necessarily win an argument, but it needs to be considered.

 

I think we would all do well to consider the worst way in which our words might be taken, not just the best.

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5 hours ago, ag_NO_stic said:

 

Instead of arguing with me (though I'm open to criticism of course), can some of y'all just see how we got there? Can we maybe all just acknowledge the other's perspective, without saying "you're right or wrong?" Can some of y'all understand why some of us start to feel less inclined to consider the feelings of others when it feels like we just get shit on all the time? Especially when many of us are NOT GUILTY of doing what some members of that social group have done. If I do a long drawn out post such as this, responding with "You're just mad you can't tell n****r jokes," is your right ........ but that's just not true. And that's deeply, personally offensive to me. And you either care or you don't care. And if you decide that you do care, but not enough to change anything, why should I? And if I decide to tolerate your offensive untruths anyway, that would be the point, right? I've gotten over myself a little and accepted that you have meaningful values too, so why can't you (generic you btw) do the same? Why must I accept your assertions, even if facts say otherwise, because of how it could affect a certain group of people? What gives anyone the right to label anyone else, in general, instead of tackling bad ideas?! 

 

 

I'll acknowledge.

 

There's much to think about in your post. Some very good perspective.

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@ag_NO_stic fantastic post! 

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