The problem with civility is not the civility, it is the whining about civility.
This type of comment galls me no end:
Civility, to me, does *not* mean being ‘nice-nice’. No. If you see me posting something you disagree with, well… go for it! Tell me you disagree, tell me why, and I will try to justify my position.
Civility, rather, means treating one another with respect. Civility means knowing that, as LBJ said “When two people agree on everything, one of them is doing all the thinking”
Civility means being polite; it does not mean being silent.
Civility means assuming that other people are of good will, even if they disagree with you.
Civility means being willing to entertain the idea that you are wrong. (well, except me, of course. I’m never wrong).
“How could you think that you ignorant baboon!” is not civil.
“F*ck you” is not civil.
“Only a Republican could think that” is, given the nature of this site, not civil.
“I disagree, because I think XXXXX” is civil.
Civility does not shut down debate, it opens it up. It allows people to venture unpopular positions, knowing that they will not be shot down. It allows people to disagree without risking friendship. It encourages those who are usually quiet to speak up.
Let’s disagree. But let’s not be disagreeable.
The problem with this is that the folks who write this type of comment will wield “civility” like a club in an attempt to stifle debate. I know it. I lived it. I came here because I felt confident we would not buy into this faux bullshit. Based on the reaction to the comment, I think I may very likely be wrong. More
I responded to this comment as follows:
When can assumptions be rejected? (0.00 / 0) [delete comment]
IP Address: 126.96.36.199
“Civility does not shut down debate, it opens it up.”
Demands for civility to avoid substance do shuit down sicussion,. I have found in my expereince that the demands for civility are almost always more stifling than than the incivility itself.
“It allows people to venture unpopular positions, knowing that they will not be shot down.”
Um, why should anyone fear being shot down? And if they do, maybe they wouldbe better of not venturing unpopular opinions.
“It allows people to disagree without risking friendship.”
What kind of friendship do you really have if disagreement puts it at risk?
“It encourages those who are usually quiet to speak up.”
This is a valid point. But I do not believe the tradeoff of the lectures on civility and the stifling that does is a worthy tradeoff.
“Let’s disagree. But let’s not be disagreeable.”
This is an empty platitude. I’ll watch to see when people insist on “civility.” In my experience, it is always to peiople who disagree with you and NEVER to those who agree with you.
You being everyone here.
In short I strongly disagree with your comment because the words you write NEVER match the actual demands for civility.
I can say without hesitation that I suffer more personal attacks than most, USUALLY from people decrying my incivility.
Hell, I get attacked at sites I have not frequented in months if not years, if not ever.
NEver have I seen anyone complain about the inciivlity aimed at me EVER.
I do not care for your comment.
I guarantee you many, and I venture to say the person I responded to will find my response uncivil and a problem.
And if that view becomes a prevailing one then this site will not be what I expected and I will not be here much at all.
I think this is just the kind of bullshit “concern” we do not need. If we are going to be concerned about this, then include me out. I want no part of it.