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There are very few people using insults, but can we please have zero people using insults? It only takes one person writing insults to tarnish the spirit of the forum. If you use insults here (I just read some terrible content here today!), not only is that immoral, as it also diminishes the participation, meaning, and value of this forum. So please stop doing this.

The forum is for discussing, debating, arguing, sharing, marveling, philosophizing, whatever, of course! IT's ABSOLUTELY NOT FOR USING INSULTS, is it? Don't insult members of the forum for whatever reason. Don't insult religious beliefs. Don't insult specific ethnic groups. Or you turn this forum into a horrible place where no self-respecting people will come back to.

Several people have practically halted their participation because of recent racist content in the forum and because of individual members being insulted. While I would have preferred that they complain openly and stay, they chose to stay away. It's everybody's loss. I am complaining openly and staying, although I cannot gather the motivation to upload music.

PLEASE DON'T RESPOND TO THIS THREAD. There's no point, and I dread to have to read responses. It is such a simple a basic thing I can't imagine there's anything at all to discuss about this! 

[Since a discussion ensued anyway, I'm crossing out the original request to not respond, since anyone should feel free to join an ongoing discussion.]

Please just don't insult people in any of the other threads, that's all. Respect other people's integrity, respect yourself, and respect the forum.

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Bob, Thank you very much. I wasn't aware of your earlier appeals to civilized behavior.

If I understood correctly from a recent post, it is your birthday today.

I send you my heartfelt wishes of a Happy Birthday!  :-)

in the spirit of forum friendship, which seems like a nice concept.

You said, "Please don't respond to this thread."

So I won't do that.

I'll merely say, I agree with what has been said.

It's unnecessary to insult individuals personally, to insult people based on their ethnicity, national origin, gender, religion or class.

Ondib, I won't respond to your post either :-) But I do notice that you do follow in your posts the principle you outline above, which you seem true to and probably would extend to extra-terrestrial beings as well.

Meanwhile, the insulting language continues as usual in the "Symphony" thread. Where, in the context of discussions about politics and society, you have been personally insulted consistently in what seems to be a type of sport.

I would like to ask you a question, if you don't mind. You wrote it is unnecessary to insult individuals personally, and I am under the impression you also believe it is wrong (not merely unnecessary) to do so. My question is, have you thought long and hard about whether it is either necessary, right, or wrong, for the insulted person to remain engaged and maintain the conversation with the person or people who insult them, and who do and will continue to insult them?

Sorry to put you in the spot. Again, I emphasize I do not think you are using inappropriate language in your posts, or that you have insulted others. What I do see is your being repeatedly insulted and choosing to continue engaging and thereby perpetuating the opportunities for insulting language to be directed at you. This is difficult to understand and the said insults pollute the forum, in many people's opinions.

Maybe it's a simple answer like "the topic interests me and the insults only reflect on those who write them". But what about what it does to the spirit of the forum and other people's motivation to stick around?

MCC, I am sympathic to your plea, but have to ask, have you ever watched

a courtroom drama or even a Presidential debate? You mention the 'spirit' of the

forum, What does that mean to you?

There is no common consciousness I have perceived from one thread to the next.

It is in all of our interests to learn and grow, but not necessarily into the artificial

bubble of 'pretending'. This to me is no different than Political Correctness;

or the old adage, Hear no evil, see no evil, speak no evil.

Who is to decide if it is insulting, or playful ribbing, or someone attempting to open

the eyes of someone else that doesn't realize their own 'buffoonery'?

While I agree that Mary Poppins and the kids should not go walking thru the

streets of Southeast Wash. DC at night, in reality, those streets exist.

The crucible of life is not lukewarm, and out of the fire you get either hot air,

or the Phoenix rising.     I hope you take this in the spirit it is given.       RS

I too would like a clear definition from the forum's administrators about Fredrick's accusation about O transcribed by O in his recent thread that was closed. Although the spectacle was created by Fredrick and that thread didn't get closed.

In my mind, the complaint is not so much about Fredrick, but about the content of that post of his and why that content is allowed in this forum. But if you read through that thread, you will also find racist content against "orientals", and other instances of what the forum administrators and many members might consider to not belong in civilized discourse.

Also I notice that the complaint about Fredrick's accusation comes from a member (O) who to my knowledge has never voiced any complaints before and clearly would only worry himself about something that's gotten THIS EXTREME.

Seeing that the forum is intended to be international, which by implication means open to everyone, it seems logical that the forum administrators should define some basic rules of engagement that will allow it to be IN PRACTICE (not just in theory) open to everyone.

Maybe basic rules against insulting individuals, ethnic groups, religious beliefs, etc, should be written prominently at the very top of the forum's web page. This would also make clear what is meant generally by "the spirit of this forum", or what people can expect from it or at least what they can expect NOT to find here.

MCC, 'Open to everyone'? ...as long as they play by the 'rules' you are comfortable with?

Mariza, let me ask you a question. If you sit down in the evening to watch your television,

and you flip to a channel that - let's say has a movie that has elements you find offensive,

do you continue to watch or do you change the channel? Do you then go to your computer

and fire off an email to the programmer or cable provider about the content of some of the shows,

because it is not confined to the 'spirit' that you hoped for and expected when you chose them

as a provider. Personally, I don't watch much TV, I find it too commercial, low brow mentality,

and a waste of time. That would insult a lot of people..... So what. The world does not revolve

around me and I have no right to tell other people how to live, and either do you.

If you don't like the show, pick up the remote, and change the channel.

Obviously, by the number of views and the participation in any thread, you should be able

to determine a degree of interest. Is that a fair assumption? Otherwise it would simply

die out from lack of interest and participation and drop off the bottom of the page.       RS

Bob, I do agree with you. And.................. I have absolutely no problem with you calling me

an idiot.... really! Whether it is justified or not. Either you are right or you are wrong.

If you are right, then I have something to learn.... If you are wrong, then you have something

to learn.  Life is about 'becoming', not about guarding the statis quo.

but yes, I agree that the 'higher'road is preferrable, but in practice, and I'm sure you know it's true,

that when diplomacy fails, it may be time to drop the bomb.     RS
 
Bob Porter said:

Roger,

So let's say I don't agree with something you say. We go back and forth, but you won't see my point of view. I say that you are obviously an idiot. The back and forth is fine, but the name calling is without any merit. It only proves that I am unable to form any intelligent response. It has nothing to do with pretending, or sugar coating, or ignoring how life is. Third graders call each other names. I would hope we are a few notches above that. We don't have to agree. If I don't like your views, I am free to say so, and why. No problem. Someone has the right to be a buffoon. Someone else can certainly call them on it. But the high road is not the third grade approach. Why is this so hard to understand.

"MCC, 'Open to everyone'? ...as long as they play by the 'rules' you are comfortable with?"

Roger,

Open to everyone as long as they play by basic rules of mutual respect.  If there is no personal respect, then the forum is not open to people who demand personal respect.  Only those who are okay carrying on discussions through the inflow of insults will remain.  That'd be a serious loss and limitation for this forum.  That means debating the ideas but not attacking the person.  Calling someone an "idiot" in a particular occasion, does not seem like a serious breach to me.  But if you persistently put down another person, in an extreme way, it's a completely different reality and feeling that comes from that.  It is no longer a "Chip and Dale" situation (you had earlier tried to tell me this is just boys being boys, like the Chip and Dale cartoons).  But it's gotten way beyond that.  I think you have read so many of Fredrick's insults to O that you may have become numb to them, and no longer even really see them.

Also, Roger, my mind remains twisted like a pretzel about how it is possible that someone who otherwise sounds like a "nice guy" like yourself, has introduced a video to this forum whose purpose (of the video) was primarily and overwhelmingly that of blaming a specific ethnic group for the woes of the world.  And then after that, to the complete disbelief of a lot of people, you proceeded to claim that the video had nothing to do with attacking that ethnic group whatsoever.  I think I will never understand you, it's beyond my capacity to comprehend the inner workings of another person.  And yet, I would never insult you.

As for television, I don't even have one.  But I have in fact frequently complained about news reports that are ridiculously biased or partial truths.  I think it's important to demand that news sources report fully and accurately, don't you?  Or do you see important advantages in remaining quiet?  Is it more Mary Poppins to remain quiet or to complain?  I'll have to ask myself "what would Mary Poppins have done?" 

You can also ask "Mary Poppins' kids".  Hey kiddo, don't you wish Mary Poppins stayed quiet?  Shouldn't Mary Poppins let the big boys rule the world while she hands out spoons full of sugar to you and floats up to the ceiling in a ladylike way?



roger stancill said:

MCC, 'Open to everyone'? ...as long as they play by the 'rules' you are comfortable with?

Mariza, let me ask you a question. If you sit down in the evening to watch your television,

and you flip to a channel that - let's say has a movie that has elements you find offensive,

do you continue to watch or do you change the channel? Do you then go to your computer

and fire off an email to the programmer or cable provider about the content of some of the shows,

because it is not confined to the 'spirit' that you hoped for and expected when you chose them

as a provider. Personally, I don't watch much TV, I find it too commercial, low brow mentality,

and a waste of time. That would insult a lot of people..... So what. The world does not revolve

around me and I have no right to tell other people how to live, and either do you.

If you don't like the show, pick up the remote, and change the channel.

Obviously, by the number of views and the participation in any thread, you should be able

to determine a degree of interest. Is that a fair assumption? Otherwise it would simply

die out from lack of interest and participation and drop off the bottom of the page.       RS

Mariza, I think that all the discussions I have participated in here have started out with

a sense of mutual respect. It is a natural tendency. How folks handle their differences

of opinion shows their maturity, and also their experience. Some, when hints are dropped,

refuse to acknowedge the hint, and either don't care or don't understand the hint.

This causes the other to have to resort to, let's say,a less diplomatic approach.

This happens all the time, everywhere. I really don't think you can demand respect.

As for the video;

It matters not to me whether it turns out to be the Arabs, the Jews  or the Chinese

who own and run the hierarchy of the banks, if the facts point to a legitimate

conclusion, then that is the facts; ethnicity is irrelevant in the search and

determination. It is not, as you suggest, a predetermined witch hunt.  Is that clear?

The bankers ARE in a very large way responsible for the woes of this world.

You tell me, who are they, and how can we remain silent, regardless of who

they are.... Mary Poppins included.            RS

ps- it would be more effective if you didn't buy the products advertised

on a TV show than it would be to complain to the station about the programs.

It really is, unfortunately, all about the Money.

 

Hello, Mariza.

 

You said,

 

"I would like to ask you a question, if you don't mind. You wrote it is unnecessary to insult individuals personally, and I am under the impression you also believe it is wrong (not merely unnecessary) to do so. My question is, have you thought long and hard about whether it is either necessary, right, or wrong, for the insulted person to remain engaged and maintain the conversation with the person or people who insult them, and who do and will continue to insult them?"

 

I have thought about this.  You may want to know the following:  Since Tyler said he wants a "complaint" sent to moderators when there is a problem with another member, I have sent one in.  You can read the gist of this on the thread

 

http://composersforum.ning.com/forum/topics/the-most-beautiful-symp...

 

where I posted a heads up for Fredrick.  It's basically no different than what I wrote at:

 

Attention. Re: False allegations etc.  ...

 

 

http://composersforum.ning.com/forum/topics/attention-re-false-accu...

 

 

It's not that I object terribly to "insults" as such, which I find rather lame, and which I merely see as ad hominem attacks.   These are usually part of a rhetorical strategy, albeit an illogical one, which backfires and weakens the position of the person making such an attack.  However, when Fredrick makes a false allegation—amounting to a charge that I support violence, or violent people, or criminal activity (such as hacking a person to death), or indiscriminate militancy, such as that committed by extremist groups of any fundamentalist sect—then I have to say that is tantamount to libel or slander.   We and the moderators, I believe, should have an open discussion about the extent to which that crosses a line.  Similar things have happened before, and several posts containing egregious and totally unfounded libels were deleted by the moderator(s). So I would say the situation has changed and grown worse, since the last post about "hacking a person to death," and this suggestion here that anyone here would support such actions or other violent activity.

 

 

You said, "What I do see is your being repeatedly insulted and choosing to continue engaging and thereby perpetuating the opportunities for insulting language to be directed at you."

 

I don't see myself solely as engaging one person, but as an individual involved in a debate in which there are both a number of participants and any number of observers.   You mentioned "pollution."  I have thought it may be far worse to allow any thread to be polluted by repeated false statements about "human nature," which appear to reflect a philosophy of extreme nihilism, misanthropy, prejudice or support for extreme right wing economic views.  I talk about the sorts of views which have turned, and are turning Greece, Portugal and Spain into virtual colonies of the those who hold the most power in the bastions of capitalism (and I don't merely mean support for this or that economic policy, but overt support for the most savage kind of capitalism, of the kind that Dickens opposed in England).   I don't know that much about Portugal, but I have heard that huge numbers, as many as 20-30% of the population have been forced to leave. 

 

 

"This is difficult to understand and the said insults pollute the forum, in many people's opinions."

 

Yes. But that invites another question. Which pollutes the forum more:  the "insults" or certain opinions  (like unqualified unproven negative statements, to the effect that those who have the most money always win in every single situation whatsoever, without exception; and the obvious falsehood that any kind of social change is impossible and undesirable).  Perhaps both insults and extreme negativity are "polluting."  But to allow certain propositions to go unchallenged, by reasoned analysis, seems to be much worse than suffering the "slings and arrows" of a few poorly worded and ineffectual insults.  One need not suffer either insults, or the encounter with poor logic seasoned with pessimism, generalized negativity, and a general dislike of the common man.  One can respond, and may even feel obligated to respond.

 

'Maybe it's a simple answer like "the topic interests me and the insults only reflect on those who write them".'

 

Yes, there is that.  And I very often think that way.

 

 

"But what about what it does to the spirit of the forum and other people's motivation to stick around?"

 

I think people might do well to speak their minds, as you have done, and to denounce the use of insults or the propagation of misanthropy, prejudice and ethnocentrism.   Others might want to reply to absolutist and nihilistic statements.   To offer their opinions and try to draw people back to the discussion at hand.  I have seen Bob Porter and others do that frequently.  I don't think it would necessarily (or even probably) uplift the spirit of the forum not to reply to those who make questionable statements about human kind or about other's religions or cultural backgrounds, in a prejudicial fashion or biased way. 

 

I appreciate what you are trying to suggest.  And I also see much thoughtfulness and wisdom in it.  Perhaps your approach will become a sort of default position for many here.  I see nothing at all wrong with it, essentially.  And I may even adopt the kind of thinking you are alluding to, when circumstances appear appropriate to me, or seem necessary in any given time frame.

 

 

"But it's not about who's right or wrong. And who decides that, anyway. It's about exchanging views, and ideas. The idea that someone has to resort to a lesser tactic when someone else doesn't get a hint is ridiculous, unnecessary, and straight out of third grade."

 

I think that latter point is a particularly good one, Bob.   Calling people "idiots" in lieu of trying have a civilized and reasonable conversation, throws us backwards.

 

I don't even think people in third grade can be excused from the need to learn at least basic respect.   That simply means, address the facts in a conversation, and don't insult people when you can't find a good answer.  This can be learned in kindergarten. 

What about the statement:

 

"I agree that the 'higher'road is preferrable, but in practice, and I'm sure you know it's true,

that when diplomacy fails, it may be time to drop the bomb."

 

The only "bomb" in a discussion or debate is a good argument. 

 

Personal attacks, are not looked favorably upon by those who judge debates.  They simply indicate fallacious reasoning and that the person making such attacks has no sound or valid argument upon which to base a case. 

I thank you very much, Ondib, for caring to respond to my question. I read your response and learned a lot from it. I also gained new appreciation for your viewpoints.

I read just now that you may be a bit worried about Fredrick and whether he is okay right now. For that reason, I think we don't need to comment any further here. I too hope that everyone is okay, as some of these exchanges can be stressful. I hope nobody holds any deep ill will, or imagines themselves as being the object of ill will from other members.

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