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Profanity
Posted: 06 July 2007 02:14 PM   [ Ignore ]
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I may soon be banned, but anyone who wants to follow the issue is certainly free to email me, .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) or post to usenet alt.community, which the net, for inexplicable reasons, has given me like a blog.

But anyway, more to the point, “profanity” is a *Christian* concept. You dont find it in the Stoic writings, and indeed, they were known for their deliberately vulgar language, which they suggest was part of their Greek heritage, as well as an aversion to euphamism.  The whole idea of profanity arises out of the commandment about taking the name of the lord in vain. You cant do that in Buddhism, Taoism, Confucianism, or many other religions. People just dont care, dont have this juvenile attitude twards ‘magic words’.

Now, were CFI organized as a Christian website, I’d have no problem with it. But if it is going to pretend to be supportive of the humanist agenda, this makes no sense at all. Not that ad hominum should be tolerated. But that’s a separate issue.

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Posted: 06 July 2007 02:59 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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Hmm, can you pm me with a balanced account of all that happened and very specific objections expressed by whichever moderator has given you a warning.  They have never warned me for the use of expletives, so I expect that it takes two to tango and the warning may not actually be over the use of language.  I suggest you re-read the warning very carefully and if you still don’t agree with it, talk it over with the moderator in a calm and reasonable manner rather than posting a topic about it.

You are right in saying that there is nothing wrong with any word (and refusing to use certain words is a sign of a limited vocabulary) - arguments I have heard from over-sensitive people have ranged from “It’s offensive because of it’s meaning” to I just don’t like the sound of that word.” 
The latter is just bigotry gone mad and the obvious ripostes would range from “well, bully for you!” to “Specifically, which syllable would you like me to play down”.  The former however is brainless. For most people, the most offensive word comes from the ancient indian prefix “cu” which pertains to femininity and fecundity - two fairly nice things.  Furthermore, the word I’m avoiding means vagina, a perfectly nice body part.  Anyone who objects to that can bugger off (which pertains to anal intercourse and yet most people find it perfectly acceptable).
One person even tried to argue with me that caling someone a vagina as an insult demeaned her vagina.  Needless to say, I found this very argument injurious since I fell off my chair at this point.  I can’t believe that such a thing would bother people given that GTFOI therapy is freely available at no charge, the world over and can be self administered.

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Posted: 06 July 2007 03:15 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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My grandfather had a saying:  Curses are the effort of a feeble mind to express itself forcefully.

It has nothing to do with religion, but rather acting like you know what you are talking about have some knowledge beyond the vulgar.  Surely you can rise beyong vulgar language.  Vulgar means common, not necessarily foul or bad language.  Requesting people to go beyond vulgarity certainly not juvenile either.  Most teens like to curse to show off and get people’s attention.  Thus cursing is juvenile.  It’s time to grow up and go beyond the common and act like there is some intelligence here.

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Posted: 06 July 2007 04:15 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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Who getsta define vulgar? I try to follow Stoic principles, and high on that list was the deliberate us of politically incorrect and vulgar language. I agree it is one thing to call someone names in lieu of an argument, ungodly amounts of space in the postings is wasted on it.

If you need to rely on whether I use vulgar language to determine whether I am a fool, it raises questions in my mind about your own capacity to judge authorship. And certainly, you are free, as many do, ignore what I post.,

But I rather thot that Stoicism was at the foundation of humanism and the free inquiry into the nature of things outside the bounds of both polite society and religion. I have lived in the black community, and I remember how often they used “nigger”, which the Stoics were certainly admire as an effective way of defusing the word and eliminating the power of the white man to elicit a response. Profanity falls in the same class.

Were this a Christian forum, of course I would take care to watch my language. But I am well aware of how much of academia grew out of institutions founded by churches, and that without thinking, it adopted their habits, such as the perjorative attitude twards vulgar language. It was also a sign of the Victorian upper class.

But again, humanism is spozed to be beyond class issues. Is CFI devoted to scientific enquiry or not? Does that include the insights of anthropology and sociology about “magic words”? Or the means by which neurotics try to give names to things they’d rather not consider carefully so as to remove them from the prefrontal lobes?

I’ll be happy to take my comments elsewhere, where I dont have to worry about these immature issues. I have appreciated the degree of discourse lacking ad hominum, but profanity is on the lips of all the people I know in my neck of Ozark woods on a daily or even hourly basis. Its no biggie, we are not trying to pretend to be something we are not. You all mite just as well be asking me to use the Queen’s English. I thot we had a war about that. That you defer from using profanity among your peers I dont have a problem with. but the net extends into all kindsa places that you do not control, nor should your Christian values be imposed.

That you do not realize that the sanctions against profanity is only a testament to your lack of scholarship; Christianity regarded, if you recall, the world as “profane and evil”, whereas the humanists regarded it as sacred and good. So, of course, I use profane language. It is the language of the real world, not some utopian heaven.

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Posted: 06 July 2007 07:12 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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More evil has been doine in the name of my primitive ancestor had an old wives’ tale than pretty much anything else.
And, Mriana, I know you have better critical thinking and rhetorical skills than that; kindly use them.
I react to the word vulgar in much the same way your grandfather might have reacted to the word nigger (presuming he was a decent man).
Vulgar is a word meaning common or ordinary.
In some ways being those things is very good - and in no way should it be insulting; that would be extremely unjust on a hell of a lot of levels and I don’t think you need that spelling out to you, but if needs must, pm me and we’ll argue the point.
Either way, I don’t want to see the average Joe being insulted anywhere, not least here.
And, furthermore, you have enough conventional intelligence to reason, rather then going through the army “drill so that you don’t waste time thinking” worthless tradition hugging crap that is listening to brainless sayings and believing them to be automatically true. Even if you don’t - even if you can’t reason them through and decide their worth on merit or lack thereof - don’t bother putting that kind of “oh! there’s an ill-thought-through mantra for it and previous generations can’t be wrong” thing on here, because we are free thinkers and we won’t buy that kind of crap without reasoned arguments.

I’m sorry for putting it it this way. And I really am, because I like you and I like interacting with you on here. But, I’m sorry, I don’t take that kind of a rebuttal without going for the throat; it’s not in my nature.

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Posted: 06 July 2007 08:25 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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[Edited for vulgarity—dougsmith, Admin]

In “The Genealogy of Morals” Nietzsche noted that Christian values have been imposed so long on what passes for civilization that people do not even realize how, as we now say, they have been subject to ‘group think’. Stoicism tried to rail against it, but the rational dispassionate way they carried on did not have the same emotional appeal- so their principles never did go very far with the masses.

But they, more than all others, tried to follow rational scientific principles, never using high sounding language when the vulgar vernacular would do. They knew also how it was the vulgar that supported republican traditions rather than tyranny which always used spin.

I can see how those here mite think that by avoiding vulgarity they mite be able to communicate with, and perhaps convert Christians to reason, but from what we know of group think, that is a vain hope.

[ Edited: 07 July 2007 04:42 AM by dougsmith ]
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Posted: 07 July 2007 04:41 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
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If you want to have an open discussion of vulgarity, that’s quite welcome. However there are certain rules to using this forum, in particluar rules (2)(f) and (5), which you can peruse at your leisure HERE. To the extent that posts or threads violate these or other rules they are subject to editing, deletion or locking. Members engaging in such problem behavior are subject to rule (3).

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Posted: 07 July 2007 07:45 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]
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You can make and enforce whatever rules you like, and one of them is to stay within the bounds of *CHRISTIAN* tradition regarding what it amorphously decides is ‘vulgar’ or ‘profane’. And limit statements to what conforms with modern office urban language. But to then imply the forum is an open *inquiry* into secularism (which does not have magic words) and religion (many of which do not either), is frankly oxymoronic.

Of course, on the net, anyone can claim to be anything. You have my email- .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) and can look at my website, http://dc-pc.org , and if anyone wants to discuss this matter in a free and frank manner unbounded by the limits of group think imposed here, they can certainly do so.

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Posted: 07 July 2007 07:55 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]
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This is getting silly, daybrown.  no one is stopping you from discussing profanity, but there are legitimate reasons why a site might not want them used publicly and I can see a point as far as point 2f is concerned given that it may affect the legal status of the site. As to point 5, I believe I told you about that in the second post in this forum read point 5 and my post and find a better ways of dealing with it than this.

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Posted: 07 July 2007 11:03 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 9 ]
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While we may have strong emotional connections to our views, the modern solecization of language doesn’t have to impose itself on our discussions, especially since we haven’t moved far enough in that direction that such usage is generally accepted.  I realize that the various forms of the word for copulation have replaced “uh”, “well”, and “very” for many people, but others still see it as a strongly pejorative and offensive word. 

Such words are almost never necessary to the meaning of the post and sort of dumb, but if they are, one can always use the more technical synonyms.  Occasional lapses might be missed, but the moderators have the responsibility of deleting them and asking the poster who uses them to refrain.  Repeated usage after being warned demonstrates that the person probably has not learned or accepted the need for social behavior on this forum and could be banned. 

Of course, use of the technical words as destructive sarcasm or insults such as the following also will not be tolerated:

1) He micturates me off. 
2) He may want to consider self-copulation. 
3) His seeming incapability of accepting reasonable rules may indicate a partial substitution of his neural tissue with fecal matter. 
4) His attitude is indicative of him being composed entirely of rectal flesh. 
5) His behavior may be the result of being born of and reared by an unmarried mother. 

I wish to make it very clear that the use of the male personal pronoun here refers to a hypothetical person, not to any particular poster. 

In short, I don’t give a flying copulation what fascinating or foolish history is quoted as pseudo-justification for profanity.  This forum was set up for a particular purpose and with certain goals and rules which are elucidated in the rules posted.  If one wishes to operate well outside these, I suggest he consider finding a forum more compatible with his need to focus on sexual and excretory verbalization.

Occam as a moderator

P.S. Don’t bother attempting to argue against this.  The matter is not open for discussion.

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Posted: 07 July 2007 11:52 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 10 ]
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Not to wade into the whole debate, but Occam, I have to call foul. It seems awfully unfair and not in keeping with fostering a fair moderator policy, if moderators participate in a debate hiding behind the blue text of and authority of the moderators. Your opinion on profanity would have been more welcome (at least by me) if you had saved that for a black text post and used your moderator authority only to state and support specific enforcement of the rules.

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Posted: 07 July 2007 12:19 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 11 ]
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I see what you are saying, cgalla, For reasons of rule 5, he is perfectly entitled to do that given that daybrown has continued to use that language whilst the matter was still at least partly “sub judice” and to debate publicly over what really ought to be a private matter between him and a moderator - I’m all for this thread as an intellectual exercise, but the real lack of decency here is that niggling politicing that is going on.  There is a place for complaints (as pointed out by doug) and there is a place for discussion.  We all could have taken the time to read the forum rules before signing up for this site and decided to reject them (i didn’t read them, but that’s nobody’s fault but mine).  I think fair warnings have been given, they have been clearly explained and I think it is ridculous for daybrown to take issue with those warnings here.  Nothing can be gained by it and it is not in keeping with either the rules or the spirit of a discussion forum such as this one.  The moderators have no choice but to intervene, since that is what moderators are for.

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Posted: 07 July 2007 12:42 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 12 ]
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I read the criteria when I signed up, and made a reference to this issue then. I dont have any hard feelings about it. I am too dispassionately Stoic for that. But if a venue is going to call itself the “Center for Inquiry” and then not be able to tolerate language that is blunt, profane, obscene & vulgar in keeping with Stoic tradition, then that line of investigation is blocked off.

You all are perfectly free to carry on anyway you like. And I am perfectly free to try to follow the principles of Stoicism which include the above, as well as a disdain for politically correct nomenclature and ideas.

But I repeat, your rules against profanity and vulgarity are, in fact, and always have been, *CHRISTIAN* principles, and I write the way I do to challenge that standard, not to be personally offensive to anyone including the moderators. And now you put yourselves up as an unbiased venue?

I am a pagan. I was born on a farm, live in the country, and am not a Christian. CFI appears to be setup to present divergent views, and I’m sure you all can get along just fine without the input of that tiny minority of people who live in the country. You want me to filter my representations of the world I live in to comport with your Christian traditions. No thanx. You can go to usenet’s “alt.community” to see a large collection of my posts there, and if you want add any challenge to any of it. I dont control what gets posted there. Nobody does.

Say whatever you like, call me whatever you like; I dont have any hot buttons. thats part of the Stoic tradition. The moderators here can do what they want, ban me or edit my comments. But they cant make me to conform to polite Christian society because I am not a part of it, nor subject to its group think.

I would think that the contradiction between ‘secularism’ (which has no sanctions against magic words) and the moderator policy would be obvious.

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Posted: 07 July 2007 01:38 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 13 ]
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daybrown - 07 July 2007 12:42 PM

But if a venue is going to call itself the “Center for Inquiry” and then not be able to tolerate language that is blunt, profane, obscene & vulgar in keeping with Stoic tradition, then that line of investigation is blocked off.

From another Stoic:

Adapt yourself to the things among which your lot has been cast and love sincerely the fellow creatures with whom destiny has ordained that you shall live.
–Marcus Aurelius

So here you have it, daybrown, directly from a fellow Stoic: Adapt yourself!

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Posted: 07 July 2007 05:48 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 14 ]
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I think that point was addressed in a post that was clipped. Not that I expect everyone to read everything I post anyway. I am adapted to those fellow creatures I live with. I am only online because of a satellite dish out in my neck of Ozark woods. I reported on the way my fellow creatures here express themselves, which the moderator does not care for. Pagans have always been noted for their vulgarity. To some extent, proud of it. We dont havta conform the way we speak to suck up to some urban authority figure.

I dont live with CFI; it is only patterns of pixels on this screen. Nothing to get worked up about. If you dont wish to read about the way those I live with feel and express themselves, I dont have a problem with It just seems rather contradictory for a venue at the *center for inquiry* limiting itself to what conforms with its sensibilities. i have been grateful of the opportunity to access the way the posters here appear to think, and have by now picked up on other ways I disturb sensibilities in my inquiry.

One of the advantages I have out here is that I am largely left alone to think my own thots, so I get to consider more deeply the effects of group think from the mass media which is constantly yammering in the ears of urbanites. I note that when I post something that falls out side the usual left/right rhetoric, the silence is deafening. This indicates to me that no 1 is reading it, or thinking about what is posted.

Its easier to get your panties in a wad over magic words.

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Posted: 07 July 2007 06:52 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 15 ]
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daybrown - 07 July 2007 05:48 PM

...it is only patterns of pixels on this screen.

So is child pornography.

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