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Old 04-23-2012, 11:35 AM   #1532
Goon Squad Leader
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Seattle
Posts: 25,059
Being offensive is not ban-worthy.

Here in Washington we have a law, recently upheld, to my dismay, that permits pharmacists to refuse to dispense legal medicine to someone with a legal prescription based on a moral objection. I imagine the pharmacists would say they were offended by, perhaps, the behavior or attitudes of, you know, some people. Here's why I have a problem with that AIRQUOTE standard AIRQUOTE.

One, it's utterly subjective. Even being intolerably annoying is subjective, but it is a more restrictive standard than "offensive". Do we want all offensive speech silenced? Not just ignored. Not fought against. Not refuted. Not argued into self-evident submission. Just forbidden, but just around here. I say no.

Two, that kind of rule cuts both ways, and it's *sharp*. Apparently, JBK finds *your* position offensive. When the shoe's on the other foot, there is no call for you to be kicked out. Why isn't there a call for you to be banned by the same standard "offensiveness" Is that the right response? I say no.

You said in another thread that one mitigating fact about mercy's comments was his contrition; that he "learned" about/from the offensiveness of his remarks. If teaching dwellars to be better people is the laudable, if Sisyphean goal, then banning JBK doesn't further your efforts toward that goal.



Rivers of hateful speech have flowed through the cellar, rivers whose headwaters are still here. I think selective banning is just a different shade of the same stupid prejudice being shown by JBK's homophobic remarks. And we absolutely *DO* make judgments about the ... importance of all kinds of remarks including hateful ones. As a student of language you know well the value of tone and context in all kinds of communication. Maybe I have been inattentive to this "kill kill kill" comments, but a quick search of the cellar returns over 45 thousand instances of "kill". That is many metric fucktons of evidence for banning. Really?
Also a very stable genius.
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