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The Lost Art of Polite Disagreement

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posted on Jun, 11 2015 @ 04:27 PM
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First let me say I am not even close to perfect. Sometimes I read something on ATS and it infuriates me that another human being would say something I consider inflammatory or simply ridiculous. Few people are above an occasional outburst or bad day.

That being said, I have seen what I consider a lack of decorum and respect on ATS as of late. I disagree with people on ATS all the time, but I am okay with that and frankly what would be the point of reading this forum if everyone agreed with me. I am not normal in the least and I would never expect other people to agree with everything I say. I would simply ask that we all TRY to disagree in a positive, mature way without being condescending or talking down to the other person. I have been wrong many times and changed my views on many topics over the years and what I believe now isn't necessarily true for someone else or the absolute truth.

I suppose I am just suggesting that we all try to be kind to each other as much as we can. I have found myself disappointed in some of my posts as I read back through my responses and am trying to be more thoughtful and positive as I move forward. Maybe some of you feel the same way. If not feel free to carry on as you will. I might be wrong anyway.





posted on Jun, 11 2015 @ 04:31 PM
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a reply to: Metallicus

Yet another post like this...

Threads like this are a regular occurence lately, its getting ridiculous. (the reason for them, not the threads)



posted on Jun, 11 2015 @ 04:33 PM
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a reply to: Metallicus

Fortunately, I've never had the time to sit back and really think about what I've been writing-but if it has been anything remotely offensive, I apologize.



posted on Jun, 11 2015 @ 04:34 PM
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I suppose I am just suggesting that we all try to be kind to each other as much as we can.


What if everyone is already doing this and the hate filled speech is our maximum level of cordiality, there is always the possibility of everything getting worse and we will remind this days as the good old days



posted on Jun, 11 2015 @ 04:35 PM
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a reply to: Metallicus

I have to confess that I have typed out things that I felt so "wrong" about that I actually logged off after posting and spent some "me" time thinking about.

We all have our passionate beliefs and they end up tied to our egos and our views of the world. When others challenge those beliefs we tend to freak out. All of us, or at least most of us do anyway. As beings, we do not accept the notion of change very well. We like familiarity and equate it with comfort. Even if the reality is that what we are familiar with is actually not that comfortable at all - objectively speaking.

So I've been trying very hard, as of late, to practice what your OP states. And I'll tell you, it's tough. Once the emotions get inflamed it is HARD to put the keyboard down. It's HARD to click that little X and walk away. Especially if you feel like your adversary has gotten in a shot that leaves you looking weak or bad.

It's at moments like those that the words of a sage ATS member named Springer come to mind - as he is fond of saying "Words on a screen." when folks get upset. And, in the end, that's honestly all they are. Pixels.

I think the entire world would be a better place if we all learned to set our emotions to the side and practice the words "OK. I see that we don't have the same opinions. We've both stated our case and still disagree. So let's leave it at that and realize that there are probably dozens of issues or things that we would agree upon."

For example - if I recall you are a fairly Conservative poster. I'm liberal. BUT we are both apparently metal heads. So, there is mutual ground there somewhere.



posted on Jun, 11 2015 @ 04:39 PM
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Isn't it funny the people that never are rude are the first to apologize.

Seen this before....Kids are getting out of school.

We should be so proud of our young people.



posted on Jun, 11 2015 @ 04:44 PM
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a reply to: Metallicus

I completely agree. It is very difficult for me to be a member of ATS due to this issue. I want to retaliate so bad every time I feel I was sleighed by someone but I fight the urge to avoid sinking to their level, also most of the time they are significantly more intelligent and I would end up losing the battle anyway. My favorite is when someone uses the saying "no offence" and then does just that, like it makes anything you say okay if I start with "no offence". It makes people not want to share opinions or thoughts, and essentially kills content and reduces members. So when I feel like quitting ATS, I go on yahoo comments and argue with people there, just to vent, it seems to help.



posted on Jun, 11 2015 @ 04:49 PM
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Reading your comments I see what is the problem, you see other people as adversaries, you make your post to win, if you make all having confrontation in mind why are you expecting anything else?

Dialogue is only real when both parties are willing to compromise

Or something I don know, I'm here to say what I want, not to change minds and win hearts



posted on Jun, 11 2015 @ 05:01 PM
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originally posted by: Metallicus
First let me say I am not even close to perfect. Sometimes I read something on ATS and it infuriates me that another human being would say something I consider inflammatory or simply ridiculous. Few people are above an occasional outburst or bad day.

That being said, I have seen what I consider a lack of decorum and respect on ATS as of late. I disagree with people on ATS all the time, but I am okay with that and frankly what would be the point of reading this forum if everyone agreed with me. I am not normal in the least and I would never expect other people to agree with everything I say. I would simply ask that we all TRY to disagree in a positive, mature way without being condescending or talking down to the other person. I have been wrong many times and changed my views on many topics over the years and what I believe now isn't necessarily true for someone else or the absolute truth.

I suppose I am just suggesting that we all try to be kind to each other as much as we can. I have found myself disappointed in some of my posts as I read back through my responses and am trying to be more thoughtful and positive as I move forward. Maybe some of you feel the same way. If not feel free to carry on as you will. I might be wrong anyway.



This is a fair point. Agree. We should be able to have respectful, calm debates without turning to ad hominem attacks and so on.

I also recognize that I've had my bad days and have written a post or reply that is too harsh. I apologize to those that I have offended or been disrespectful to on here. I would write my own thread saying that but maybe that's not necessary.

I can commit to the same, of being better about it.

However, I do think that it's important that we all focus on evidence as much as possible, especially with sensitive issues. A lot of people on here will say things that might as well be downloaded from a propaganda book or a memo from the State Department, or from a special interest.

Probably most of us could do with recognizing the limits of our knowledge on specific topics, and while humbly offering opinions listening to members who do have expertise regarding the topic. That doesn't mean that we should engage in arguments from authority, meaning "so and so is an expert so what they are saying is the TRUTH." We are all here to learn, and none of us are experts on everything.

I can find myself getting very frustrated when people are seeming to just relay ignorant things or ideas that are not supported by the research in relevant fields (international affairs, poverty, social justice, economics, etc). But, that doesn't mean I have the right to berate them or lose it.


edit on 11-6-2015 by Quetzalcoatl14 because: (no reason given)

edit on 11-6-2015 by Quetzalcoatl14 because: (no reason given)

edit on 11-6-2015 by Quetzalcoatl14 because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 11 2015 @ 05:05 PM
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Depends on how narrow your tolerance levels are. It doesn't matter to some people how nicely you disagree, you challenge their authority they take it as a personal attack, drawing attention away from the subject matter.

Changing the subject instead of answering the question or addressing the point is also frustrating.

At times I wish debate was live so you could hear the crowd reaction in the room…

In synch…Answer the question, just answer… ANSWER the question!



posted on Jun, 11 2015 @ 05:17 PM
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I appreciate the discussion and the suggestions. I get very passionate about freedom and sometimes when someone wants to 'tell me how it is' I get upset. I *think* I can usually agree to disagree with most people, but when someone starts getting condescending or simply won't allow for other points of view I do get somewhat combative.

a reply to: Indigent



What if everyone is already doing this and the hate filled speech is our maximum level of cordiality


Entirely possible!
edit on 2015/6/11 by Metallicus because: eta



posted on Jun, 11 2015 @ 05:19 PM
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a reply to: Hefficide

Heff, I rarely agree with you, but I also never get upset by your posts. You are passionate about your beliefs and accept other points of view. I have a great deal of respect for you and your well written posts.



posted on Jun, 11 2015 @ 05:52 PM
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I've done it.

I know I have, & I don't feel good about it.

Often times it's a lost in translation/text British sense of humour that for all intents and purposes, isn't intended to offend.


But I also realise that I'm not actually funny, so lately I've been trying to hold back on all that.

In person, it may be recognised easier, as a poor attempt at humour, online, not so much.
It just seems confrontational.


Actually, having been told numerous times lately "I know what you're like"...
I find myself replying less and less to people just so they can understand I'm not "like" that...

It seems easier to leave my opinion and forego a debate nowadays.


Sorry to rant.

S&F



posted on Jun, 11 2015 @ 06:31 PM
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a reply to: Metallicus

It's only the interwebs. Who cares? I can take it as well as dish it out. I like passionate exchanges and hold no resentments.

Being marginalized as a "people like you" is some how a nice position to be in.
edit on 11-6-2015 by olaru12 because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 11 2015 @ 06:47 PM
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I am one of those people that say or write something and think about it after the fact, gets me in trouble all the time.



posted on Jun, 11 2015 @ 07:07 PM
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This happens in all of life, not just online. Take politics as an example, or religion or parenting. Each of these is full of emotion and strongly-held beliefs, often beliefs that have been very carefully considered and researched. When someone strongly disagrees or states that you are wrong it's an affront to your very core.

After my own careful consideration I believe that I am right, then I am, no matter what anyone else says. If I don't have a strongly-held view, then I am open to suggestions. In either case, I draw the line at personal attacks, and only reinforces my view that they, not me, are wrong.

After all, if they can't make a convincing case for their argument, I'm not going to make a convincing interested listener.



posted on Jun, 11 2015 @ 07:14 PM
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a reply to: Metallicus

"There is no true happiness at the expense of someone else's unhappiness" -- Buddhist proverb.



posted on Jun, 11 2015 @ 07:21 PM
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originally posted by: wasaka
a reply to: Metallicus

"There is no true happiness at the expense of someone else's unhappiness" -- Buddhist proverb.


That depends on what makes the other person happy. If their happiness physically harms others without their consent then your proverb is wrong.

edit on 11-6-2015 by infolurker because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 11 2015 @ 07:30 PM
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a reply to: Metallicus

I try to stay focused on the message and not the messenger but every now and then I unleash my word-fury on individuals as diplomatically as words will allow because, well, sometimes folks need to be taught a lesson in manners and sometimes an in-your-face reality check is the only way those particular individuals learn that 2 can play their game.



posted on Jun, 11 2015 @ 08:01 PM
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a reply to: Metallicus




I would simply ask that we all TRY to disagree in a positive, mature way without being condescending or talking down to the other person.


This is also why there are so many divorces now, this applies to life all of it but especially in a close relationship. If people learn this one thing their relationships would last.



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