It’s yet another case where their rules have evolved into a situation which is objectively nonsensical. You can’t point out that someone is lying in GD, you can’t tell someone to fuck off in the Pit, but you can pen lengthy screeds about the inferiority of the Negro and Mongoloid races (seriously, how bizarre is that?) and ask black posters if they’ve ever raped anyone. Pick a lane, people: either you’re all about the free speech or you’re all about requiring people to express themselves in an inoffensive manner, but jumbling the two together just ends up looking crazy
One of the most ironic things about the Straight Dope is that for such a supposed bastion of free thought and free speech, by looking at it you can really get a glimpse of how religions get started, with an ossified, hidebound priesthood mumbling arcane rules and rituals that might have once had some utility but are now unthinkingly enforced simply because they are there.
You can’t talk about smoking weed long past anyone gives a shit about it because Discussing Current Drug Use is verboten. Ditto for file-sharing, and those rules might have made some sense back in 1996 when the internet was a lot wilder and woolier and they didn’t want every dropkick with a dialup connection dropping in to spark up a fat one and talk about where to steal Limp Bizkit albums. Now, though? Long, long outmoded.
Conversely, as an offshoot of an alternative newspaper they are stuck with a knee-jerk free speech policy which means that you can talk about the clear inferiority of thick-lipped mud-men: long as you avoid using specific words or combinations of words, you avoid the penalties, and that creates a haven for the rules lawyers O IT CANT BE HATE SPEECH COS HE DIDNT SAY NIGGER. They endlessly follow the form of the rules as first laid down, and forget the original function. It’s a religion.