Re: E X P O N E N T --December 2001 Members Newsletter

From: Samantha Atkins (
Date: Mon Dec 10 2001 - 21:14:28 MST

Lee Daniel Crocker wrote:
> > In the interest of list quality, we have strengthened our stance
> > on ad hominem (attacking one's character as opposed to debating one's
> > ideas) attacks, with a zero tolerance policy.
> I am disappointed that a organization like ExI, which ostensibly values
> rational thought, has chosen to follow a zero-intelligence policy on
> anything. Human beings have marvellous minds that to date no machinery
> has been able to duplicate (despite our best efforts). Why are so many
> authorities afraid to use them? Zero-tolerance policies substitute
> blind automatic rules for what should be the exercise of human judgment.
> We weaken our ability to fight such policies elsewhere when we succumb
> to the temptation to eliminate judgment and responsibility ourselves,
> just as we complain that politicians and others do.

Pulling a gun in the middle of an argument is not tolerated.
Physically beating up your opponent in a debate is not tolerated
at all. So why should verbally abusing your opponent, their
character, intelligence and so on something that you want to
leave leeway on? Why is one form of violence introduced in a
debate more tolerable than any other?

> Authorities should have the courage to take responsibility for their
> own subjective judgments and their actions. This is a subjective matter,
> and /should/ be a subjective matter.

If someone we start calling each other names in the middle of an
argument then we are not speakign coherently to one another and
nothing productive is likely to come of it. There is nothing
subjective about when we starting to do so.

- samantha

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