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LogicalFallacy

Tolerance vs intolerance - where is the middle ground?

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1 minute ago, Joshpantera said:

 

 

So the issue is, if it happened to where someone actually does feel intolerant of gays and lesbians, which I don't think anyone actually is in this day and age, what is

Are you seriously that naive? My world is populated with people who are intolerant of gays and lesbians.

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Ok, I have one last point to make here, and then I'm done. Yes, I am an intolerant person in this regard. I am intolerant of intolerance and prejudice towards gays and lesbians and any other attitude that excludes people on the basis of their identity. And why am I intolerant of this intolerance? Because it isn't good for society, it serves no purpose except to hurt those affected, causes division among people, and promotes more intolerance when it is accepted as "anything goes, it's free speech." I honestly did not think I would have to state this here on this site, I thought it would be understood that intolerance of prejudice and bigotry that attacks the very core of who people are, is acceptable, as people have fundamental rights to be accepted as they are on the basis of identity. I thought we would all be thinking of the end goal: what is good for society, what isn't harmful? It's the end goal that matters for me, and fundamental rights.

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1 hour ago, TrueScotsman said:

Let's not pretend this is the first episode, and many of the ideas and thinkers expressed by this poster reflect some degree of ethnic nationalism, which in my opinion is a repugnant anti-human idea that is at it's heart racist in that it asserts the superiority of the European race.  And I don't know if you've paid attention, but much of those sentiments are currently being perpetrated in our society by the administration whom they are major supporters of.  You don't seem to be as much of a political animal as some of the others, perhaps I just see the present situation as more dangerous and bad than you do, and therefore have a different context to these interactions.

 

I have browsed some of this, but it seems like a lot of projection to me. I'll watch the content and then hear people responding and often see a problem with the way in which people are taking it out of context. I want to get to where it's first established and not just projection and out of context assumptions. 

1 hour ago, TruthSeeker0 said:

Are you seriously that naive? My world is populated with people who are intolerant of gays and lesbians.

 

Sorry, I meant more so on these forums than with christians other actual bigots in the world. I haven't seen people being intolerant of gays and lesbians here. That would mean not tolerating them, not tolerating gay marriage, and things like that. I don't see that from people around here. 

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15 minutes ago, TruthSeeker0 said:

I honestly did not think I would have to state this here on this site, I thought it would be understood that intolerance of prejudice and bigotry that attacks the very core of who people are, is acceptable, as people have fundamental rights to be accepted as they are on the basis of identity.

 

That's too bad. I'd rather you not storm out of here. I've enjoyed having you around and reading your posts. That's the good side of being tolerant of intolerance. You can be intolerant of intolerance, and I can be "tolerant" of your intolerance, of intolerance. I have no need or wish to see you or anyone similar go or be silenced. Hopefully you reconsider. 

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On 6/12/2018 at 11:28 PM, LogicalFallacy said:

 

I have a problem with calling someone a bigot (Even if I think they are) By calling someone a bigot, doesn't this make that person a bigot? A bigot is basically a person who is intolerant of the views and opinions of others. By telling someone else their thoughts, values, and opinions don't count because they are intolerant you are essentially being the very thing you are railing against. In saying that your opinion is bigoted therefore I won't tolerated it you are being intolerant yourself... simply because you think your cause is just and theirs isn't.

 

Didn't read the rest of the thread yet, but why do I need to?  You summed up the whole thing right here. ^^^^

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2 hours ago, TruthSeeker0 said:

Yes, I am an intolerant person in this regard. I am intolerant of intolerance...

 

smh

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On 6/12/2018 at 8:28 PM, LogicalFallacy said:

We might not like another's opinion, or views on a subject (Just read the ToT!) but does this mean we should or give us the right to start calling them bigots... and does this very intolerance of their intolerance make us intolerant?

 

 

You can call someone a bigot due to their off-color post. Then watch them post another off-color post the next day. It's probably useless to engage with name-calling. It may be useless to engage with well-reasoned rebuttals. It may be better to just ignore threads that you feel are absurd. It may also be a good thing to not take what people write on web forums so seriously. While some of it is discussing real points in real issues, some of it turns into debating imaginary points and hypothetical outcomes.

 

So, be fabulous like me enjoy your day. :)

 

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Let's simplify this.

 

We are losting posters. We have been for a while.

 

The point of this site is to help people move on from Christianity. To help people who are recovering feel supported and valued.

 

Some of the people who have left probably don't need the support that this site provides anymore. In those cases, it's sad to see them go, but it isn't the end of the world. But what of those who are leaving, or have left, and are still in need of a community of support from ex-Christians? I don't know that this is the majority, but it doesn't seem unlikely to me. Also, I can see that some of the baiting that goes on in ToT might be off-putting to those who are thinking of joining. People who might need this site.

 

If any of the above is true, then what is going on right now is a very serious problem. It is interfering with the purpose of the site. I don't have the solution, but I would like it if everyone could agree that there is actually a problem.

 

So. We are losting posters. How do we fix it?

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7 hours ago, duderonomy said:

 

Didn't read the rest of the thread yet, but why do I need to?  You summed up the whole thing right here. ^^^^

 

Aww thanks ya ol C***... but I went to so much effort for that hugely post. Please read the rest :D 

 

2 hours ago, disillusioned said:

Let's simplify this.

 

We are losting posters. We have been for a while.

 

The point of this site is to help people move on from Christianity. To help people who are recovering feel supported and valued.

 

Some of the people who have left probably don't need the support that this site provides anymore. In those cases, it's sad to see them go, but it isn't the end of the world. But what of those who are leaving, or have left, and are still in need of a community of support from ex-Christians? I don't know that this is the majority, but it doesn't seem unlikely to me. Also, I can see that some of the baiting that goes on in ToT might be off-putting to those who are thinking of joining. People who might need this site.

 

If any of the above is true, then what is going on right now is a very serious problem. It is interfering with the purpose of the site. I don't have the solution, but I would like it if everyone could agree that there is actually a problem.

 

So. We are losting posters. How do we fix it?

 

I've sort of got things backwards in this post as I've quoted later stuff first. Bear that in mind. I do hit on this subject later on in replying to True Scotsman. I pretty much agree with this which for me poses something of a cognitive dissonance because I do also value the freedom for people to post pretty much whatever they like and have that discussed. Now it is a sad fact that baiting, trolling, and people taking the bait goes on... a lot. So its not just hot topics are discussed heatedly - its that at times we are playing the forum version of defend the hill, or steal the flag. I do seriously think that too many people jump the gun and don't even make a passable attempt at understanding what the other person is saying. They see something they don't like and BAM. Happens on all sides.

 

So I do agree there is a problem.

 

Several solutions have been suggested, and we have hashed this topic out before, and I've no doubt that we will do so again. Solutions broadly are: Status quo (If that's a 'solution'), Moderation, or Password locking a particular section where hot topics can be discussed, terrible meme's posted, pictures with vague exposition torn apart. The pass-wording does solve the issue of having some section to discuss whatever in, but keeps it out of the eyes of those who may be triggered by such. Of course the counter argument to that is that the ToT comes with a very clear warning in bold. So yeah, not sure.

 

12 hours ago, TrueScotsman said:

I don't see how one is a bigot for calling blatantly homophobic content bigoted.  There is no prejudice involved, just a completely appropriate response for the substance of the content.  Which is unfortunate the term is used here, but there seems to be copious amounts of instances where it is honestly warranted.  I usually also make arguments against their statements, to both demonstrate why the idea is repugnant, but also why it is wrong.  Though recently I have lost the patience for that, as I don't think a good portion of the content is worthy of engaging with.  

 

Tolerance shouldn't extend to all ideas, certainly all ideas should be learned about through appropriate settings, but giving a platform to harmful ideas is simply a bad idea.  Which is why Sam Harris refuses to have Stefan Molyneux on his podcast, whose ideas are reflected in many posters here.  

 

Wouldn't you say that you are prejudiced against certain of those who post content you disagree with? The question might be whether either prejudiced is justified. Or maybe we call it bias, but whatever it is, can any of us honestly say we are not prejudiced or bias against certain opinions? I might be off on the wrong track here, but I think I could honestly say I'm prejudiced against Christians. Now I'm aware of that so do my best to listen to their arguments fairly, but its still there.

 

Regarding the tolerance issue, I wonder if you are clear about what I'm wanting discussed here? I know some seem to be confused, or conflating tolerance with acceptance. By no means do I think we should accept certain ideas, if any. I think all ideas need to be challenged and see if they withstand scrutiny. What I'm talking about in regards to tolerance is allowing all ideas to be heard without censorship. (Short of violence - I'm not advocating for hearing Joe Blogg's ideas on wiping out the Ommpa loompas.) However some seem to think that because I think Fwee (for example) should be able to express his views, distasteful as they may be, that I therefore agree with them - this is just not the case, and this is not the tolerance I'm discussing. And yet even when I express my tolerance for intolerance people seem to not want to tolerate this.

 

14 hours ago, disillusioned said:

I have lots of thoughts on this. Some of them are coherent, some of them less so. Bear with me.

 

First, the issue of bigotry. I think @LogicalFallacy is basically correct technically with what he wrote above. Bigotry is defined by Merriam-Webster as "a person who is obstinately or intolerantly devoted to his or her own opinions and prejudices; especially : one who regards or treats the members of a group (such as a racial or ethnic group) with hatred and intolerance" (link). On the first part of this definition, declaring someone else to be a bigot and, therefore, dismissing them is itself a form of bigotry. A major problem that I see though is that in common usage, this term does not mean intolerance of opinions, it means intolerance of members of a particular group (ie, racism, sexism, homophobia, etc). This is consistent with the second part of the definition. In either sense, though, it may be accurate to describe an individual as a bigot. What we must be careful not to do is to dismiss their views on that basis. If I'm a bigot, then call me one. But you still need to show that my opinion is actually incorrect. This does not follow from your assertion that I'm a bigot, irrespective of the veracity of that claim.

 

Agreed. I'm more interested in discussing the first definition in regards to what should be tolerated, not the second. I don't have a problem calling people out as long as the 'why' is given. If however you don't like someones opinion on a topic and you call them a bigot then I've got an issue with that, and that's where I think the paradox comes in. That calling someone a bigot because of their opinions seems to me to make you bigoted of their opinion.

 

 

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Everyone's favourite case in point: Hitler. I've read Mein Kampf. Hitler made no bones about the fact that he was pushing an agenda of explicit racism. It is literally right there in the text. He says it many times. So, a reader of Mein Kampf would be entirely correct to describe Hitler as a racist, and, by extension, a bigot. And, in so doing, he would not himself be engaging in bigotry. He would simply be describing the situation accurately. However, it does not follow from the fact that Hitler is a bigot that he is wrong. If we want to contend that he is wrong about the Jewish question (or anything else), we need to actually argue that he is wrong. We can't just dismiss him because he is a bigot. If we do so, then we are technically engaging in bigotry ourselves.

 

However, it may be argued that to engage with a bigot is counter-productive in itself, as such individuals are, by definition, not particularly inclined to consider the opinions or arguments of others. This is as it may be. But if you engage with a bigot, and they show themselves to be dismissive, then they are simply showing their true colours. If your intention is to illustrate that they are a bigot, then there is literally no better way to do this than to engage with them politely, and let their intolerance display itself. The problem with this is, it doesn't exactly make for restrained conversation. Things will probably get heated, and if you are to achieve your goal, you'll need to keep a level head. So if you are planning on doing this, you need to be prepared to take the high road. If you are easily triggered, this strategy will probably not work for you, as you very well may wind up coming off as just as intolerant as the other party. So tread softly, because you tread on our dreams.

 

This relates back to a point I made about people not making a real attempt at understanding the others viewpoint. I'm not saying one should agree with it, but at times there seems to be a cycle of opinion posted > this is a good thing to disagree with ad infinitum. I wonder instead of immediately countering a persons post, that you may or may not understand, if asking them to clarify what they actually mean is a better route to take? For one it will force those making posts of very vague, but hot button topics, to elucidate their position rather than just getting a bite.

 

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And in all of this, we need to keep in mind that ideas are ideas, and actions are actions. Ideas should be able to expressed, and discussed, even if they are controversial. "I don't like it" is not a substantive objection. It just isn't. But it is also true that ideas incite action, and we need to be careful. If you repeat an idea enough times, then people will believe it. And once they believe it, some of them will act on it. A very disturbing aspect of human nature is that we quite like being told what to do. Hitler knew this, and capitalised on it in spades. Mein Kampf is full of ideas. Some of them worked really well. But, if someone comes to me and says "You know, I think Hitler was basically a good guy", I will destroy that person's opinion. Not because I don't like it, but because it isn't true, and it is very dangerous. Hitler was not a "good guy", and I can show you why any time you want. Also, if you insist that he really was a good guy, then you're probably a bigot. But that's really kind of beside the point. You're wrong. As @ContraBardus said, shit arguments are shit arguments. We should be able to treat them as such.

 

I think the issue with repeating ideas is if they are not challenged in open discussion. And let us not fool ourselves. Not challenging ideas from the left will prove to be as disastrous as not challenging ideas from the right. (I point to the doggy rape study recently posted about in the ToT) 

 

However this point about harmful ideas also leads to, or back... I forget where I discussed it... to the purpose of this forum: does allowing controversial/hot button topics adversely impact the purpose of the forum as a whole? In other words, how much should we tolerate, and where is the middle ground?

 

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Nevertheless, I don't think that name-calling, in general, is particularly productive, even in cases where the name is accurate. I think we'd all do better to try for more civility. We should attack arguments, not people. Or, if we must attack people, we should do so in the knowledge that an attack on a person does not invalidate that person's ideas.

 

Agreed - I use an example of calling a Christian stupid, or even ignorant, even if its true, it doesn't help anything or anyone.

 

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Seriously. If we could all just behave more like adults, that would be great.

 

You've seen Trump right? And Kim? They are adults. Nuff said.

 

14 hours ago, TrueScotsman said:

Captain of the Thought Police, here.

 

I feel like the regulars on this site are far more Libertarian in sentiment (including all of those who have spoken here so far) so someone of my temperament's opinion should be noted.  Take it or leave it, I guess.

 

On the usage of bigot, since this seems to be the hottest topic in this discussion about free speech so far.  I used the term selected for a certain individual, based upon things he stated, which I thought were perfectly befitting of the adjective.  I was not alone in this assessment, and reflects my concern for such rhetoric populating these boards.

 

It's not just the name calling - it's the clear preference of yours, and of others, to shut down opinions you disagree with that would be my point of contention. (Just to be clear I don't think name calling or labeling helps in any situation - accurate or not. Many Christians are in fact stupid, but saying that to them doesn't help anything so one needs to ask why they are calling names etc) Now I gather that the primary reason for your preference to moderate heavily is due to the nature of this site; that its a recovery forum not a discussion forum? Would that be fair to say?

 

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Marty's account doesn't even exist anymore.  There are many here who are perhaps LGBT, have loved ones who are, and to have them regarded as diseased and truly disgusting people on this forum is just plain questionable.  It should be strongly derided by posters here first of all, if not rejected as content for viewing.

 

I do agree with the sentiment expressed here, and elsewhere by others that the allowance of all topics does have the effect of driving some people away. We of course don't know how many people have poked their head in the door, had a look and said no way.

 

Quote

 

I believe in the first amendment's restriction on the ability of Congress to make laws inhibiting the freedom of speech, but I don't think that every institution should universally accept all viewpoints on their platform.  If we lived in the Weimar Republic and the Nazi's came on into your bar and loudly proclaimed the dawning future of Hitler's Germany, you'd be an asshole if you didn't kick them out. 

 

Let's ignore the first amendment. It's a US only thing, it only applies to the US. Many of us are not US citizens so lets define the conversation over what speech should be tolerated in this community, giving regard to this sites purpose.

 

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There are plenty of places online which are totally accepting of discussing all the differences about one race being better than another, or how one sex is totally awful, or that homosexuals are diseased and disgusting people.  If you continue to allow this place to be one of them, then I assure you basically anyone of a temperament similar to mine is going to left out of discussion, since we will have long since fled.

 

I'm of two minds here. When I first came here I actually agreed with a lot of what Fwee and BO posted. As I've grown as an Ex-C I've actually veered left of them to the point where we now largely disagree. But it was, and still is part of the growth. I have conversations here and can talk (hopefully) freely about topics that I simply couldn't as a Christian, and still can't in my RL. So while you talk about it not being helpful for recovering persons, it also is helpful for other recovering persons hence my question of where is the middle ground?

 

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I would be down for moderating against strong personal insults, if bigotry, racism, and other outright offensive forms of xenophobia were also moderated for.  I guarantee you that if this doesn't happen, then the diversity in opinion here will only decline further.  Perhaps create a password created forum that functions similar to ToT, except have a moderated political forum.  In the age of Trump, wishing people could just get over politics at the present is just wishful thinking.  These issues are really important, and to avoid them all together or make them too toxic to engage in is simply not going to work IMO.  

 

But where does this kind of moderation end? I disagree with the way Fwee et al express their opinions, I disagree strongly with some of their views and opinions. If we take Islam, I don't think all Muslims are animals etc, but I do think Islam is a problem. If I make a thread outlining my concerns regarding Islam would you call this Islamophobic and want it moderated? The thing is right now there is huge diversity of opinion. Within this very thread we have everything from all and anything should be allowed, to the ToT needs to be moderated or even shut down as some have expressed. So there is plenty of diversity. Now if those of a certain leaning all up and leave that will decrease diversity, sure, but if you shut up others of certain leanings you also decrease diversity. So I really don't think appealing to diversity of opinion is a good argument. It seems this situation is a real lose lose for diversity.

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12 hours ago, TruthSeeker0 said:

Ok, I have one last point to make here, and then I'm done. Yes, I am an intolerant person in this regard. I am intolerant of intolerance and prejudice towards gays and lesbians and any other attitude that excludes people on the basis of their identity. And why am I intolerant of this intolerance? Because it isn't good for society, it serves no purpose except to hurt those affected, causes division among people, and promotes more intolerance when it is accepted as "anything goes, it's free speech." I honestly did not think I would have to state this here on this site, I thought it would be understood that intolerance of prejudice and bigotry that attacks the very core of who people are, is acceptable, as people have fundamental rights to be accepted as they are on the basis of identity. I thought we would all be thinking of the end goal: what is good for society, what isn't harmful? It's the end goal that matters for me, and fundamental rights.

I am a fan of your attitude and the beliefs you hold in wanting to champion that the world be tolerant of everyone. Please continue to be that voice, no matter what.

 

That being said, sometimes we all need to be reminded that part of being human is the notion that we all need to be part of a group. And once we become part of a group, we instantly become part of an out group for other groups. There will always be people who do not agree with us and we will often disagree with those people, sometimes just for the sake of disagreeing.

 

In the case of LGBT stuff, it causes a lot of discomfort for a lot of people. I admit that it does for me. When people are uncomfortable, they often speak from that discomfort and, many times, that discomfort doesn't necessarily produce rational and tolerant words and actions. Which is a shame. We should all be able to disagree with each other, and I don't think anyone here is arguing that we all agree all the time. And while I may be uncomfortable with the thought of LGBT stuff, I am not interested in taking away someones right to be who they are. I understand that love is love and no matter who the people are who are giving and receiving the love, they should give and receive it to/from whomever they like.

 

I am not sure there is much middle ground in topics that are as volatile as LGBT stuff. Is there a case where both sides get to learn to be comfortable with their discomfort? I honestly don't know. If each uncomfortable with LGBT person accepts their discomfort and make no effort to stop LGBT persons from living their lives and being who they are, what discomfort do the LGBT people experience in this scenario? Maybe the knowledge that there are those who are uncomfortable with who they are? I just don't know.

 

I am trying to be genuinely honest here about my thoughts. In this case, we have an either or situation. Either the LGBT person gets to live their life or they don't. There isn't middle ground. I am ok with my discomfort. I can live with it and I support LGBT people because I care about them, as I do all other humans. But, I have biases and prejudices just like everyone else. I admit that I am uncomfortable with the unfamiliar, whether that be Gender, Race, Religion, etc. Maybe that is the key: Simply admitting what makes us uncomfortable and being genuinely honest with each other about it. We can all grow as people when we have nothing to hide. Food for thought. 

 

Edit: for grammar

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6 hours ago, midniterider said:

 

You can call someone a bigot due to their off-color post. Then watch them post another off-color post the next day. It's probably useless to engage with name-calling. It may be useless to engage with well-reasoned rebuttals. It may be better to just ignore threads that you feel are absurd. It may also be a good thing to not take what people write on web forums so seriously. While some of it is discussing real points in real issues, some of it turns into debating imaginary points and hypothetical outcomes.

 

So, be fabulous like me enjoy your day. :)

 

 

This, folks, is an example of the end result of deconversion. Immune to many things that would otherwise pose a psychological threat for someone not as far along. 

 

3 hours ago, disillusioned said:

The point of this site is to help people move on from Christianity. To help people who are recovering feel supported and valued.

 

3 hours ago, disillusioned said:

I don't know that this is the majority, but it doesn't seem unlikely to me. Also, I can see that some of the baiting that goes on in ToT might be off-putting to those who are thinking of joining. People who might need this site.

 

If any of the above is true, then what is going on right now is a very serious problem. It is interfering with the purpose of the site. I don't have the solution, but I would like it if everyone could agree that there is actually a problem.

 

So. We are losting posters. How do we fix it?

 

I've said before, it wouldn't be a bad idea to treat the site like a mystery school initiation. Where people have to move through the ranks of initiation one step at a time. ToT would be for people who are not inclined to over sensitivity. Like in the example. MR has advanced to a level of immune to being overly sensitive, or feeling the need to shut other people down for saying things he disagrees with. Let's face it, shutting other people down is akin to "church think." 

 

This whole discussion reminds me of church politics, way too much. Where some group will want to gang up on and bully a member or members for not conforming to the orthodox opinions of the church group. And want them ex communicated and banned. That's not healthy deconversion, people. That's not achieving the goal of leaving behind "church think" christian ways of conducting ourselves. Ganging up on someone and trying to have them banned as a heretic or witch, bring false testimony and false allegations to push the charges. Fwee has been asked if he's intolerant of gays and lesbians and he's said, over and over again, no! What is this, the inquisition? Why does he need to be asked? And if he says no, why continue charging a false allegation that he's denounced? 

 

The fact that people are here admitting to being intolerant of people that they even just "assume" are intolerant, says something about how close they still are to christian "church think" mentality. And either they're interested in continuing their deconversion and growing out of that mindset, or they aren't. And either they want the help of more experienced people to get through deconversion, or they don't. But if they do, then they need to look at the big picture and realize that witch hunts and inquisitions represent a dark place in the human mind, which is not flattering or becoming of existing in a free society, nor a "freethought" oriented online environment like this one. The fact that we're pushing no censorship and absolute free speech and expression, is a testament to personal growth and expansion out of christian "church think," mentality. 

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I was going to stay out of this thread, but I just had to pop in here and say this;

 

@LogicalFallacyAfter reading this post of yours...

I have to admit, you have an amazing mind.

 

In all of my time here, I don't believe I've ever seen someone as able to see the multiple facets of an issue, and give such level-headed explanations pertaining to so many of them in such a way that just about anyone with any level of literacy would be able to understand.

 

For what it's worth, you've jumped way up on my respect-o-meter with the way you've conducted yourself in here.

 

Thanks for starting this. Keep up the beyond excellent work.

 

 

 

 

 

And now back to your regularly scheduled program...

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2 hours ago, Storm said:

I am a fan of your attitude and the beliefs you hold in wanting to champion that the world be tolerant of everyone. Please continue to be that voice, no matter what.

 

That being said, sometimes we all need to be reminded that part of being human is the notion that we all need to be part of a group. And once we become part of a group, we instantly become part of an out group for other groups. There will always be people who do not agree with us and we will often disagree with those people, sometimes just for the sake of disagreeing.

 

In the case of LGBT stuff, it causes a lot of discomfort for a lot of people. I admit that it does for me. When people are uncomfortable, they often speak from that discomfort and, many times, that discomfort doesn't necessarily produce rational and tolerant words and actions. Which is a shame. We should all be able to disagree with each other, and I don't think anyone here is arguing that we all agree all the time. And while I may be uncomfortable with the thought of LGBT stuff, I am not interested in taking away someones right to be who they are. I understand that love is love and no matter who the people are who are giving and receiving the love, they should give and receive it to/from whomever they like.

 

I am not sure there is much middle ground in topics that are as volatile as LGBT stuff. Is there a case where both sides get to learn to be comfortable with their discomfort? I honestly don't know. If each uncomfortable with LGBT person accepts their discomfort and make no effort to stop LGBT persons from living their lives and being who they are, what discomfort do the LGBT people experience in this scenario? Maybe the knowledge that there are those who are uncomfortable with who they are? I just don't know.

 

I am trying to be genuinely honest here about my thoughts. In this case, we have an either or situation. Either the LGBT person gets to live their life or they don't. There isn't middle ground. I am ok with my discomfort. I can live with it and I support LGBT people because I care about them, as I do all other humans. But, I have biases and prejudices just like everyone else. I admit that I am uncomfortable with the unfamiliar, whether that be Gender, Race, Religion, etc. Maybe that is the key: Simply admitting what makes us uncomfortable and being genuinely honest with each other about it. We can all grow as people when we have nothing to hide. Food for thought. 

 

Edit: for grammar

In the last years before I left religion, I realized it had resulted in a lot of bias and prejudice. I questioned those biases and prejudices, I literally forced myself to look at them head on, question them, and pick them apart. I have continued to adopt this approach when I realize I still hold plenty of other biases and prejudices. One of the best things in this life is having this attitude: why does this make me uncomfortable? What can I do to approach and challenge this head on? Thus, I'll give you an example. All my life I  heard comments from my surrounding family and community about how native people are lazy, about how they abuse the system, about how the circumstances of their lives are their own fault. And the education system did no better, it taught me that native people simply are excluded from Canadian history, it did nothing to teach me about how colonialism tore apart the very fabric and lives of these people, and it just gave me the impression they are largely on the fringes of Canadian society for a good reason. So, I began to question, why did these people make me uncomfortable? Why was I so uncomfortable with what  I was hearing, and seeing. Why, when I saw a native person as a panhandler on the street, was I much more likely to think they are sheer lazy, and that's why they were there? What did I do? I faced my uncomfortable feelings head on. I educated myself. I read, and read some more. My education in history and critical thinking skills helped a lot. And I'm not done. I would some day like to have the opportunity to spend time among a native community, learning more about the culture(s), as they are quite different than the one I grew up in. There are things about native culture(s) that I admire much more so than my own, respect for the environment being one of them.

It was a learning curve, but I'm happy to say over the years, I threw away my prejudices, and came to learn exactly how harmful lack of education and critical thinking skills are.

So, don't be a wimp. If you feel uncomfortable, force yourself into that uncomfortable zone. That's where the learning and the growth happens.

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2 hours ago, Joshpantera said:

 

The fact that people are here admitting to being intolerant of people that they even just "assume" are intolerant, says something about how close they still are to christian "church think" mentality. And either they're interested in continuing their deconversion and growing out of that mindset, or they aren't. And either they want the help of more experienced people to get through deconversion, or they don't. But if they do, then they need to look at the big picture and realize that witch hunts and inquisitions represent a dark place in the human mind, which is not flattering or becoming of existing in a free society, nor a "freethought" oriented online environment like this one. The fact that we're pushing no censorship and absolute free speech and expression, is a testament to personal growth and expansion out of christian "church think," mentality. 

I haven't attacked anyone here. I have attacked intolerance of who people fundamentally are at their core, (I even said, irregardless of what the case was here with Fwee) and why I think it's dangerous. I stated that I had in mind an end goal, and that was: what benefits society, what doesn't hurt?

So, witch hunt and inquisition is a bit much. For 36 years, I lived in a community where there was strict intolerance of gays and lesbians, and they were often the brunt of scorn and ridicule. Does it actually mean nothing, that some people place more value on such things as acceptance of other human beings, and who they fundamentally are, more so than free speech and anything goes?

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2 hours ago, Joshpantera said:

 

 

The fact that people are here admitting to being intolerant of people that they even just "assume" are intolerant, says something about how close they still are to christian "church think" mentality. And either they're interested in continuing their deconversion and growing out of that mindset, or they aren't. And either they want the help of more experienced people to get through deconversion, or they don't. But if they do, then they need to look at the big picture and realize that witch hunts and inquisitions represent a dark place in the human mind, which is not flattering or becoming of existing in a free society, nor a "freethought" oriented online environment like this one. The fact that we're pushing no censorship and absolute free speech and expression, is a testament to personal growth and expansion out of christian "church think," mentality. 

You are doing a disservice to this site, imo, by stating that those who hold different opinions, and value different things, haven't fully deconverted, or that their opinions/values are somehow part of the deconversion process. You even started a thread where we discussed personality differences, and the ways in which people think, and how these are different. Can we get no recognition that people are different, and yes, they place higher and lower value on some things, and that that doesn't somehow make them better or lesser beings? Because that is what the implication is here: "you haven't grown enough, you're still somewhere on the way." I for one do not agree with this at all.

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29 minutes ago, TruthSeeker0 said:

In the last years before I left religion, I realized it had resulted in a lot of bias and prejudice. I questioned those biases and prejudices, I literally forced myself to look at them head on, question them, and pick them apart. I have continued to adopt this approach when I realize I still hold plenty of other biases and prejudices. One of the best things in this life is having this attitude: why does this make me uncomfortable? What can I do to approach and challenge this head on? Thus, I'll give you an example. All my life I  heard comments from my surrounding family and community about how native people are lazy, about how they abuse the system, about how the circumstances of their lives are their own fault. And the education system did no better, it taught me that native people simply are excluded from Canadian history, it did nothing to teach me about how colonialism tore apart the very fabric and lives of these people, and it just gave me the impression they are largely on the fringes of Canadian society for a good reason. So, I began to question, why did these people make me uncomfortable? Why was I so uncomfortable with what  I was hearing, and seeing. Why, when I saw a native person as a panhandler on the street, was I much more likely to think they are sheer lazy, and that's why they were there? What did I do? I faced my uncomfortable feelings head on. I educated myself. I read, and read some more. My education in history and critical thinking skills helped a lot. And I'm not done. I would some day like to have the opportunity to spend time among a native community, learning more about the culture(s), as they are quite different than the one I grew up in. There are things about native culture(s) that I admire much more so than my own, respect for the environment being one of them.

It was a learning curve, but I'm happy to say over the years, I threw away my prejudices, and came to learn exactly how harmful lack of education and critical thinking skills are.

So, don't be a wimp. If you feel uncomfortable, force yourself into that uncomfortable zone. That's where the learning and the growth happens.

Kudos to you for making the time to learn about the people you were taught were lazy and helping yourself understand them, so you could treat them with respect. You are certainly better for it.

 

As far as your challenge to force myself into that uncomfortable zone, I have done so. I have friends and acquaintances who are Gay and Lesbian. I enjoy their company and I see past their sexual orientation to know who they really are as people. I could have avoided them, but I choose to embrace them as friends and I am better for it. Who they have sexual relationships with isn't really my business and I don't let it affect my relationships with them. But I don't have to be comfortable with what they do to be understanding and to enjoy a relationship with them and to treat them like normal humans, which they are. I am capable of being uncomfortable and being ok with it. I am also perfectly comfortable with not knowing lots of things. That doesn't diminish my ability to live my life as best I can in this world. Could I do more to understand and know about them better? I could, but truthfully, its not that important to me to understand all the intricacies of being LGBT. I can respect them and know them in spite of my lack of knowledge.

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What is typically lacking is simply the thought process. For example, one may have an opinion that the religion of Islam poses an immediate threat to America and therefore all Muslims should be banned. Another opinion may be that the vast majority of Muslims are just normal people living peaceful lives and raising families. When met with an opposing opinion it is up to each side to provide evidence for their position. The evidence should be addressed, not the character of the person stating the opinion. When a person holds a demeaning view of a certain group and would consider them lesser and would deny them rights afforded to others, if they can't supply evidence that their view of these people is the warranted, then there's a true bigot. They have an unfounded and uninformed opinion they refuse to change in light of facts. Sound familiar?

 

That said, there have been topics introduced here that are thinly disguised bigoted tirades and intentionally inflammatory. "Look what those animals at BLM are up to now! Those pride parades have become recruitment exercises! Feminists want to keep your testicles in their purses! Funny how all the banks are owned by Jews!" Made up examples, but similar things have shown up here and the name calling begins. This shall not continue.

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I read a column in the New York Times by opinion writer Frank Bruni.  Frank is pretty much aligned with the Democratic Party so I’m not in the habit of quoting him approvingly, but I think he was right on the money this time. Although he was talking about how some ways of opposing Trump are counterproductive, much of what he has to say seems like good advice regarding the recent turmoil in our ToT forum:

——————————————————-

”I get that you’re angry. I’m angry, too. But anger isn’t a strategy. Sometimes it’s a trap. When you find yourself spewing four-letter words, you’ve fallen into it. You’ve chosen cheap theatrics over the long game, catharsis over cunning. You think you’re raising your fist when you’re really raising a white flag.

 

You’re right that Donald Trump is a dangerous and deeply offensive man, and that restraining and containing him are urgent business. You’re wrong about how to go about doing that, or at least you’re letting your emotions get the better of you.

When you answer name-calling with name-calling and tantrums with tantrums, you’re not resisting him. You’re mirroring him. You’re not diminishing him. You’re demeaning yourselves. Many voters don’t hear your arguments or the facts, which are on your side. They just wince at the din.”

 

Enough with Hitler, too. Has Trump shown fascistic tendencies? Yes. Is he the second coming of the Third Reich? No. Nor are the spineless Republicans who have enabled him Nazi collaborators, not on the evidence of what has and hasn’t happened so far.

I’m not urging complacency. But when you invoke the darkest historical analogies, you lose many of the very Americans you’re trying to win over. What you’re saying isn’t what they’re seeing. It’s overreach in their eyes.”

——————————————————-

 

Here’s the full column:

https://mobile.nytimes.com/2018/06/13/opinion/trump-midterms-robert-de-niro-samantha-bee.html

 

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5 hours ago, LogicalFallacy said:

...

Several solutions have been suggested, and we have hashed this topic out before, and I've no doubt that we will do so again. Solutions broadly are: Status quo (If that's a 'solution'), Moderation, or Password locking a particular section where hot topics can be discussed, terrible meme's posted, pictures with vague exposition torn apart. The pass-wording does solve the issue of having some section to discuss whatever in, but keeps it out of the eyes of those who may be triggered by such. Of course the counter argument to that is that the ToT comes with a very clear warning in bold. So yeah, not sure.

...

 

 

Making the ToT subforum password protected would be a good interim step.  The "Sex and Christianity" subforum already requires a password for access, so the forum software is capable of doing the same for the ToT subforum.  (As a side question, query why the Sex and Christianity is password protected and the ToT subforum is not password protected).

 

In addition, the "Recent Posts" list on the right side of the main screen does not list recent posts from ToT (or from the Sex and Christianity subforum).  This should continue.

 

It will remain easy for those that wish to participate in the ToT subforum to do so.  The issues between or among those participants, including participating moderaters, can be isolated and addressed there because most of those issues only involve the ToT subforum.

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22 minutes ago, sdelsolray said:

Making the ToT subforum password protected would be a good interim step.

 

No. People need to learn how to behave reasonably. They will learn. Everybody has a pretty good idea of where the line is, it's just that some don't give a shit. They will give a shit.

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6 minutes ago, florduh said:

 

No. People need to learn how to behave reasonably. They will learn. Everybody has a pretty good idea of where the line is, it's just that some don't give a shit. They will give a shit.

 

Well, until that transition is implemented making the ToT subforum password protected would be a good interim step.

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DEFINITIONS

 

Bigot: a person who is intolerant toward those holding different opinions.

Tolerant: showing willingness to allow the existence of opinions or behavior that one does not necessarily agree with.

Behavior: a) act or conduct oneself in a specified way, especially toward others

                  b) conduct oneself in accordance with the accepted norms of a society or group

Opinion: A view or judgment formed about something, not necessarily based on fact or knowledge.

 

Examples of opinions:

 

a) I like sandwiches.

b) I don't think two men should get married.

c) I am gay, I should be able to get married too.

d) Fwee meant _______, he thinks ______, ______, and ______

e) I do not believe in a god

f) I do believe in a god.

g) Healthcare should be universal

h) Women deserve to be respected

i) You should behave yourself in _____ way

j) F**k n****rs / I think the jews should be exterminated based on their inferior race.

l) Words have power, speech should be censored and platforms controlled

m) Words don't mean shit, I can say what I want

n) People of Color/LGBTQ folks/Marginalized Groups are victims and should be protected

o) People of Color/LGBTQ folks/Marginalized are not victims and should not be protected anymore than anyone else

p) You should not say that word, it is offensive

q) You don't have to do what other people say you should/should not do

r) You are a bigot.

s) Progress is _______, regression would be _________

t) Morality is socially constructed

u) People who think _____ is right are morally reprehensible

v) _______ is bigotry/racist/sexist/a hate crime/repugnant

w) I'm right, they're wrong

 

I could go on, but we pretty much all just have opinions on things. Let the intolerant continue to declare what they will not tolerate, let the tolerant continue to tolerate it. 

 

 

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On 6/12/2018 at 9:28 PM, LogicalFallacy said:

I have a problem with calling someone a bigot (Even if I think they are) By calling someone a bigot, doesn't this make that person a bigot? A bigot is basically a person who is intolerant of the views and opinions of others. By telling someone else their thoughts, values, and opinions don't count because they are intolerant you are essentially being the very thing you are railing against. In saying that your opinion is bigoted therefore I won't tolerated it you are being intolerant yourself... simply because you think your cause is just and theirs isn't.

 

I've seen this style of argument more than a few times. I think it has a couple of glaring weaknesses. I'm sure it would take more discussion to tease out exactly how you understand it, so I'm going to talk more generally, and if I argue against some position you don't hold I hope you won't think I'm trying too hard to misrepresent you, I'm just treating this quote as a jumping off point. I'm going to break things into two categories of problem from my perspective

 

1) Over-reliance on simple dictionary definitions, especially of the word "tolerance" or "intolerance"

 

In a nutshell, it's just silly to think that "tolerance", as people really use the word in this context, means either tolerance of literally every point of view or else the person advocating for "tolerance" is being inconsistent. In practice we all, as individuals and societies, are "intolerant" of many ideas and behaviors, and we sanction people who express certain views or act in certain ways. I am intolerant of murder and would happily express a strongly negative view of someone's belief that murder was good, and it's ludicrous to label that intolerance as bigotry towards the opinion that murder is good, as I hope everyone would agree. Yet you are appealing to a definition of bigotry in which I would be bigoted by expressing intolerance for the opinion that murder is good. I think it's implicit in the usage of the term "bigotry" that it involves "intolerance" not just in some abstract sense but of something that ought to be tolerated. That's why definitions of bigotry often also reference the idea of prejudice. Not all judgements are prejudicial, and not every condemnation of some opinion or act is bigoted.

 

2) Equivocation between different kinds of behavior caused by oversimplifying everything to "tolerance" vs "intolerance" and focusing on speech

 

We care about bigotry not just because we are offended by what people say, but because of concern for the consequences of what people and institutions do. This is true whether we're talking about racism, sexism, homophobia, religious bigotry, xenophobia towards immigrants or refugees, or whatever else. The problem of racism is not primarily a problem of what people say, it's a problem of systematically reproduced inequality and discrimination. The same is true of all the other categories I mentioned that people are about. I think some people have a tendency, and I think it's amplified by the way media tends to cover these issues, to reduce the question to competing speech acts and the idea of things being offensive. Someone "says something racist" and then someone calls them racist for it. And thus you end up with this intuition, like the one you expressed, that the question is all about whose speech is legitimate. But if I call something racist I am far more concerned with the real-world outcomes associated with it -- even if it's a belief I'm calling racist. I'm concerned about inequality. What is really offensive is the way we treat people. We should be careful we don't equivocate speech with discrimination.

 

That said, the relationship between ideology/speech and real-world discrimination is obviously complicated. While people may hold prejudiced beliefs without acting in an overtly discriminatory manner, there's no doubt that prejudiced beliefs are important to the maintenance of the institutions and systems that perpetuate real discrimination. There's plenty of research on this. What people say and believe is also important because it can't be completely separated from what we, individually and collectively, do.

 

So, if you value equal justice for all people regardless of their race, gender, sexual orientation, religion, or membership in some other social category, and you want to see the world become more just in this way, there is no doubt that changing people's attitudes is an important part of realizing that goal. Social sanctions are an important way in which people are socialized to understand and appreciate values like the idea that "all men are created equal". At the same time the repetition of prejudices is important to the reproduction of inequality. Neither expressing prejudicial beliefs nor calling people bigoted for doing so are superficial acts, although obviously there's more to activism than just yelling at people.

 

But to try to put this together, I think considerations along these lines point to the problem of saying that someone pointing out bigotry is necessarily being bigoted. Obviously details matter. Someone can be prejudicial in their assessment of someone else's bigotry. I'm not saying that every time someone calls someone racist/sexist/whatever they are right. But neither are they always wrong, as is implied by saying that in every case it is bigoted to call something bigoted. Nor is it reasonable to make all negative expressions about people's views equivalent to discrimination.

 

Note: the above is not even attempting to deal with more context-dependent questions about how people go about discussing things with each other on this forum, which is important also (as compared to what views they express). My opinion is that it would be silly, if discussing this forum, to only talk about what points of view are tolerable while ignoring the trolling, hostility and unwillingness to engage in good faith discussion that is as large of a problem. But mostly my point is just that I think it's a bad place to start to think that expressing a strongly negative opinion of someone's views is always equally abhorrent regardless of the content of the views expressed. We ought to tolerate some views less than others, and note that what it means to "tolerate" can vary dramatically. I said I was intolerant of murder but I didn't mean I would kill someone for saying it was good. What the moderation of this forum ought to tolerate is an open question I'm not trying to settle in this post.

 

 

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5 hours ago, sdelsolray said:

 

Well, until that transition is implemented making the ToT subforum password protected would be a good interim step.

I agree. I have no hopes of the ToT becoming an area where people are reasonable. Isn't the purpose of this site largely to support those going through deconversion, and those looking for a support network? If the ToT was password protected, those coming across this site wouldn't immediately be subjected to that content, and possibly turned off by it.

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5 hours ago, TruthSeeker0 said:

I haven't attacked anyone here. I have attacked intolerance of who people fundamentally are at their core, (I even said, irregardless of what the case was here with Fwee) and why I think it's dangerous. I stated that I had in mind an end goal, and that was: what benefits society, what doesn't hurt?

So, witch hunt and inquisition is a bit much. For 36 years, I lived in a community where there was strict intolerance of gays and lesbians, and they were often the brunt of scorn and ridicule. Does it actually mean nothing, that some people place more value on such things as acceptance of other human beings, and who they fundamentally are, more so than free speech and anything goes?

 

No, this does not mean nothing. I actually think this is a very important point.

 

Free speech is one thing. Anything goes is another. My opinion is that ideas should be allowed to be expressed, in general. But sometimes, over time, society makes up its mind about certain things. And, in these cases, it becomes no longer acceptable to express certain views. For example, the idea that slavery is ok is decided at this point. And this is a good thing. We call it "progress". "Slavery is ok" isn't even really an idea anymore. To assert it and expect to be taken seriously would be roughly akin to saying "maybe the Earth is flat!" and expecting to be taken seriously. Still, you should be allowed to express the view. You just shouldn't be surprised if society labels you as ignorant because of it. And, perhaps, you shouldn't be surprised if certain platforms do not permit that kind of speech. (I am not referring to anything or anyone in particular here, nor am I implying that Ex-C should censor certain types of free speech; just making a point).

 

We do need to appreciate that some people are further along the journey toward tolerance than others. This entails that, on issues which are not entirely decided, opinions must be allowed to be expressed. Then we discuss them, and the conversation moves forward. Progress ensues. Or doesn't, as the case may be. But the conversation is vital. Without the conversation, progress ends.

 

5 hours ago, TruthSeeker0 said:

You are doing a disservice to this site, imo, by stating that those who hold different opinions, and value different things, haven't fully deconverted, or that their opinions/values are somehow part of the deconversion process. You even started a thread where we discussed personality differences, and the ways in which people think, and how these are different. Can we get no recognition that people are different, and yes, they place higher and lower value on some things, and that that doesn't somehow make them better or lesser beings? Because that is what the implication is here: "you haven't grown enough, you're still somewhere on the way." I for one do not agree with this at all.

 

I think both your point and Josh's have merit.

 

It seems to me that people who are deconverting often "over-correct", and become somewhat closed-minded as a result. Over time, as we continue to recover, our horizons may expand. Speaking for myself only, I can say that there are conversations that I am now able to have that I could not have engaged in five to seven years ago, when I was a new Ex-Christian. Now, I was well-indoctrinated. The mind-fuck was strong with me. Christianity has profoundly affected who I am, and how I think. I'm "fully deconverted" now, and have been for a while, but I still can't say who I would be or how I would think if I had never been a Christian. This is just how it is. So I think the idea that people who are "fully deconverted" can sometimes engage in conversations that new deconverts will struggle with has merit, because my personal experience indicates that this is so.

 

Having said that, it is also true that people will still disagree, even when they are "fully deconverted". Josh and I disagree fairly strongly about guns, for example. But we carry on, and we respect each other. BAA and I used to disagree all the time, sometimes quite strongly. But we respected each other. Others here have disagreed with me about lots of things, and do disagree with me about lots of things. But we respect each other (for the most part). This is the most important thing, in my opinion. Respect. (I am not implying that you, personally, have disrespected anyone, nor would I do so; just making a point). 

 

I know we have recently discussed this term in ToT ad nauseam, and I know that some here maintain that people do not inherently deserve respect. From an academic perspective, I don't necessarily disagree with this point of view. That's as it may be. But it seems to me that if we want to have the kind of forum that does not haemorrhage members, we would do well to accord one another a certain basic level of respect. @ag_NO_stic very wisely said that it makes things go more smoothly. I think we've reached the point where what we deserve is beside the point. What kind of forum do we want to have? This is a question that we all need to consider very carefully.

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