Protesting a warning

I identify as “queer” and I know people who identify as “gay”, and we wouldn’t consider it a slur if used as a factual statement. I literally am queer.

I will say that it’s immoral to out someone as gay or whatever against their will, and would be fine with rules about that, but that’s a special case.

What observations about a poster count as an attack? Anything negative? Anything they might consider negative? Anything anyone might consider negative? Does that truth of the comment matter at all?

ISTM that, for the good of the board and the benefit of all those looking for thoughtful discussion, “the truth” of whether I personally “have a system of morality” vs “a bunch of unexamined responses to things you find unpleasant”, whether I, personally, am the reason “why we need laws”, and whether I, personally have a “childish desire for vengeance against people who did nothing but protect themselves”, ought to be discussed in The Pit rather than GD.

Well, unfortunately for you, we moderate according to the commonly accepted definitions of words, and not the special definitions that exist only in your head.

What if it’s not true? If we look at the posts in question, and decide that the poster is not being “too emotional,” does that mean your post was an insult?

As we’re not going to draw up a list of bright lines, that is why we have moderators. Best to avoid commenting about posters in a negative way, no matter how truthful you think it is. (Outside the pit of course).

Also you seem to confuse Fact with Opinion. Truth with Conjecture.

It wasn’t about being “too emotional”, it was about being emotional rather than rational. That’s an observation that can be made quite easily when someone makes it clear that they are doing so, and in a debate where rationality matters (that is, any debate) then it should be acceptable to point that out, so as to discredit the position of the person arguing from emotion.

Well, someone certainly is. I’m far from convinced it’s me, though.

So if we could prove via debate that iiyandiii does not lack a system of morals, you would concede that the warning is justified? The wave function collapses and the observation becomes an insult?

Well, then, certainly “stupid” should be allowed. It’s an observation that can be made quite easily when someone makes it clear that they are, and in a debate where critical thinking matters (that is, any debate) then it should be acceptable to point out that a poster is not good at thinking critically, so as to discredit the position of the stupid person.

I’m not sure that “not good at thinking critically” is analagous to what I’m saying, choosing not to think critically would be more relevant. And that is certainly something that should be pointed out. There are plenty of cases where someone is failing to think critically but, in the course of a debate, can be helped to do so. It’s certainly happened to me before - and sometimes that’s been by noting that I’ve ignored the facts or been emotional.

I genuinely think that low quality debate about important issues, based on emotion and avoiding critical thinking, is damaging to this board, and is behind serious problems in multiple societies - the election and continued support for Donald Trump being one of the most obvious examples, and Brexit in my country. A board like this should, in my opinion, make a strong stand against that, and not accept it from one side.

All of them, in a debate thread? “You’re being emotional”, “you’re being irrational”, etc. – none of those address the point that the poster made in the post. Address the issue in the post, not the person who made the post.

So, someone is continuing to argue what he wants the law rule to be and not accepting the explanation of how the law rule is actually enforced . . . seem strangely familliar.

Insults are not libel. Insults are disrespectful comments, not false accusations.

Let me help you with some general and fictitious examples of “observations” that are insults yet contain no pejorative terms:

You have a face like a blighted potato.
Judging by your physique, your parents must have been manatees.
I’ve seen pond scum smarter than you.

Well, the second and third of those are necessarily false, and the first is a value judgement of sorts. So almost entirely irrelevant to the point I’m making.

If a statement is true, can it still be an insult? - seems like a good IMHO topic.

Should truth be a defense to the rule against personal attacks? - seems like a distinct ATMB topic, since you already admitted your post included “unnecessarily judgmental” language, and even apologized.


Oh, so they don’t have to be mere “observations,” as you originally stated. They also have to be true (in your opinion, at least) AND they can’t be “value judgments.” Interesting how you keep narrowing the parameters.

You might want to be careful in excluding "value judgments."They can be implied as well as explicit, and what you seem to think are strictly factual statements obviously aren’t always generally accepted as such.

Good luck.

Let me help. Don’t make observations about the poster.

An observation is necessarily true - it may well not be complete, however. To go back to the example Rittersport used, saying someone is fat is an observation. Judging them from that without knowing their circumstances is not, neither is calling them a pig.

Ok, let’s get rid of usernames in the debate fora and work only on the arguments. That would potentially be an improvement.

This is Humpty-Dumpty-level redefining of terms. There’s no definition of “insult” in any dictionary I’ve ever seen that depends on the truth value of the disrespectful assertion.

You’re welcome to use your idiosyncratic mumu (by which I mean “definition”), but if you think others are using it in their communications, it’s gonna trip you up, as it did here.