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Old 11-05-03, 04:55 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Question Thread closed? (forbidden discussion topics)

A thread with a discussion of Christianity was recently closed because it wandered into the forbidden areas of religion and politics.I don't quite understand why these areas of discussion are not permitted, particularly in a "General Discussion" part of the site, but that's none of my business, the rules are the exclusive prerogative of the operators, I would never dispute that. The difficulty I have is that it isn't clear what "religion & politics" exactly means. A while back a post was hi-lighted marked "important!!" and kept at the top of the first page in the General Discussion area. This post was VERY political. It was in regards to guardianship pet laws. What could possibly be more political than a proposed law?? Laws ARE politics. The thread was something that was relevant to all herpers, regardless of what an individual's opinion on it was. The point is that herp keeping in itself is an activity that has a definite political side to it, laws regarding the hobby are frequently discussed on this site without any suggestion that these discussions are offensive. So simply saying "no politics" is sort of meaningless in my view and it seems to result in the arbitrary closing of threads. The same is true when saying "no religion". There were many 9/11 anniversary threads with many responces that had discussions of Islam and other faiths as well as general discussion on morality. Morality also comes up in the discussion of herp keeping in general (most frequently I've found on the topic of how to put down prey items. Is it cruel to feed live mice? Is it cruel to freeze rodents to death? Cruelty is a moral subject.) The reality is that it's impossible to seperate these topics from the threads that are actually about herp keeping let alone the general discussion area. As I have already said I respect the operator's right to make whatever rules they like and I'll obey them to the full extent of my ability (do you realize how hard it is not to swear sometimes?LOL) I would just ask that they are clear and evenly applied. If you can't discuss politics then there should be no discussion of laws of any kind. If you can't discuss religion, (which is actually just a form of existential philosophy), then it follows that discussions on the morality of different herp related topics (like how you kill a rat) also can't be allowed. The problem with having these blanket rules is that they cannot be evenly applied and the result is that they aren't enforced at all in some cases but they are unfairly applied in others. I think the goal is to stay away from fighting and stupid bickering that hot topics can sometimes bring. I think that the way to do that is to just ban personal attacks or threats of any kind directed at other members, anything else is just too complicated. These rules seem to translate in practice to "no debate", maybe that is closer to what is intended, but I hope not. Debating and attacking or insulting are different things and that's where the distinction logically should be made. It's much easier to understand that than to try to decipher what the words "political" and "religious" mean. Sorry for the long rant but I am quite confused about this.
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Old 11-05-03, 05:01 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Politics.....we have to live with Religion.....we don't Both are topics that there is no right and wrong, only grey areas between extremes. I'd personally like to not see any post on either of these subjects.
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Old 11-05-03, 05:05 PM   #3 (permalink)
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i understand what mousekilla has said. the reason that such topics are banned is because SOME people don't understand the art of "debate". They resort to name-calling, defamation, and are just plain ignorant. If everyone knew how to stay on-topic, and argue with factual information, I think there would be no need to have any sort of limits to what can be discussed. however, that isn't the case. We do still have people that aren't inclined to debate properly. oh well...
good post mousekilla.
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Old 11-05-03, 05:06 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by JonD
Politics.....we have to live with Religion.....we don't Both are topics that there is no right and wrong, only grey areas between extremes. I'd personally like to not see any post on either of these subjects.
You got it!
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Old 11-05-03, 05:21 PM   #5 (permalink)
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I agree, its something you can not change there thoughts or beliefs on!
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Old 11-05-03, 05:25 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Religions are systems of ethics and morals. Ethics and morals are discussed all the time on this site both in herp related areas and the general discussion area. I gave examples that illustrated how it's impossible to totally ban these things without banning discussion altogether. Does it not make a whole lot more sense to say that you can discuss what you like as long as you aren't insulting or threatening? I would sooner see a rule that says that says that the first time you attack another member you will be banned for life. This is something that we can all understand, what exists now is too ambiguous in my view.
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Old 11-05-03, 05:30 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by MouseKilla
Religions are systems of ethics and morals.
Religions are clubs that people join to feel secure about our purpose in life...... see now this post will be closed because alot of people don't share this view and might be offensive to some religious members here!!!! Nothing personal here....
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Old 11-05-03, 05:31 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by JonD
Politics.....we have to live with Religion.....we don't Both are topics that there is no right and wrong, only grey areas between extremes. I'd personally like to not see any post on either of these subjects.
this is why you're my hero...lol. I don't understand why people feel the need to bring up such topics on herp forums. There are other, more appropriate, places to debate these issues.
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Old 11-05-03, 05:32 PM   #9 (permalink)
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ditto... that's a great point. religion is more then ethics and morals though. For some it's a way of life. It is what runs their everyday lives, from the decision to not drink milk, to practicing various other rituals. Therefore, if I was in that category, which I'm not, I might get a little aggressive if someone argues that what I have based my life on for the past 25 years is completely false. I believe I can have a debate with ANYONE on ANY topic, until I am insulted or made to feel like a lesser person in any way. In that situation, I lose all interest, and respect. I hope I was clear... I'm in the middle of writing report cards! haha...
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Old 11-05-03, 05:34 PM   #10 (permalink)
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and, i don't see why non herp stuff can't be discussed. I mean, look at all the people you have met online... are you saying that the only thing you want to associate with these people is about snakes and lizards? I personally enjoy the general board cause I like to learn more about the people I am talking to. IMHO of course!
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Old 11-05-03, 05:37 PM   #11 (permalink)
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JonD.... your post is different than any religious post I've seen.... that I can recall.

I haven't seen a religious post presume something about somebody else's beliefs like that. It's usually (almost always) about the beliefs of the person posting.

DISCLAIMER: If there ARE religious posts attacking somebody else's beliefs then they SHOULD be shut down as it could cause a heated argument and I'm sure it has no purpose.
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Old 11-05-03, 05:40 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by JonD
Religions are clubs that people join to feel secure about our purpose in life......
This is not the question here, and what an ignorant response, please moderators close down this thread its headed in a bad direction!
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Old 11-05-03, 05:46 PM   #13 (permalink)
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I didn't mean that you shouldn't talk about other things, but topics that are as volatile as religion and politics are likely to offend some people...people who are looking for info about their herps, not for religious/political doctrines. All I'm saying is that these things, although extremely important, are perhaps more appropriately discussed elsewhere.
I don't however think that IF these topics are brought up that they should be closed. If people feel that this is an appropriate place to discuss something, then they should be allowed to. We can't please everyone, but if there is a need to debate religion, I'm sure there are forums elsewhere to do so, but that's only what I think of course.
People, by nature disagree
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Last edited by AshleyL; 11-05-03 at 05:48 PM..
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Old 11-05-03, 05:58 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Oh come on! This is a discussion about the site itself, not a debate on the forbidden topics themselves. This thread isn't a debate on those things so what "bad direction" is this going in? Is discussing the rules of this site now forbidden too? What is wrong with a civilized debate especially if it directly relates to this site or the hobby it is centred around? If a discussion deteriorates into an insult contest then maybe then it should be shut down but it makes more sense to let those who want to have a rational, adult debate to do so and to remove the offending person. It isn't the topics that offend people, it's the people that insult instead of debate. Some people can debate any topic without resorting to childish attacks and I would say this group forms the vast majority of the membership of this site. There are also those that cannot be civil and respectful even if it is just a discussion on herpetology and I would say that these people are a tiny minority of the membership of this site. Instead of forbidding subjects why not just ban those who cross the line into insults and attacks?
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Old 11-05-03, 05:59 PM   #15 (permalink)
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I'm not a religous person at all. Infact, I view most relegions as brain washing. Most religions you are told what you can and cannot do, what you can and cannot eat, what you can and cannot think.....etc. However, a reptile site is NOT the place to discuss this.

I think the people of this site have lost sight of what is an acceptable topic of discussion. If the general forum was truly an "anything goes" type of forum then that means "everything goes". But, common sense would dictate that some topics aren't allowed. Some topics that come to mine are rape, torture, murder, child abuse, weird sex fantasies.....etc. This is just my personal view but this is a reptile site........it should be kept as close to reptile related as possible. I think that ANYTHING reptile related can be discussed and if you get the odd offtopic post such as the "Happy Birthday" posts, or "look at my new car"....etc can should be allowed but if you want to discuss other offtopic discussions please take them off the site or find another site relating to your topic.

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