Members of AboveTopSecret.com: I'm Sad… And Maybe You Are Too…

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posted on Dec, 23 2013 @ 12:05 AM
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I'm sad. I've struggled with the authorship of this thread for days, because I don't know where to begin, or how to couch it in a manner that won't make it worse. And more so, where to put it. Board Questions and Business seems wrong. So here it is in Social Issues.


Manipulating The Narrative

There are republic-threatening problems in the United States (and other countries) that are the unintended consequences of the intense left-versus-right political pissing-match that began getting much worse some time during Bush Sr's reign. Hate now comes easy in nearly any issue, because it appears that any issue can be easily divided across liberal/conservative and religious battle lines. Law enforcement, foreign policy, economics, religion, health care, science, education, entertainment, freedoms, and more… everything.

It seems every week, new intensely divisive topics emerge in the public narrative. And entrenched opinion-makers on each of the polarized "sides" of the issue fan the self-serving flames with intentionally provocative rhetoric, lies, distortion, and bastardized ideologies.

Here on ATS, we generally enjoyed a nice run where all held a diversity of opinions, theology, and world-views with a minimum of intense clashes. We were among the precious few who were informed enough to realize the manufactured nature of the public discontent. Over the past two years, that "run" has come to a halt. And over the past few months, we've lost the plot… falling victim to the manipulations of the "sides."


I care deeply for this unique collection of people who have an impassioned need add their voice to this massive collection of some of the most thought provoking content on the Internet. We all saw different things in ATS, but we all felt a need to contribute and make it better.

I know that feeling is fading for some, and for others, it's gone.


Our Yoke Of Destruction

Someone for whom I had great respect, Daniel Patrick Moynihan, who seemed to effortlessly comment on divisive issues with an elegance of words, once said: "Disagreement is vital to the evolution of society, making it personal is our yoke of destruction." (I forget the setting, sometime in the mid '90's, but it stuck with me)

Many topics throughout ATS are overrun with hateful intolerance. Deference to another's beliefs, world-view, ideology, politics, or lack thereof is becoming a rare, if not extinct, commodity. The compulsion to point out critical fault, often in an insulting way, in another's beliefs, politics, ideology or lack thereof is increasing with reckless abandon.

If we can't turn the tide here on our beloved ATS and represent to the world a unique collection of people, who all think differently but represent the gold standard for deference in discourse, what hope do we have?


Perhaps I'm just a sad dreamer. Someone with an idealist's point of view that is fading from relevance.


Is There Hope?


But maybe there's hope. Let's see if there is. I want to challenge our members to stow their animosity for beliefs not their own in one area for one week: Religion.

This time of year, originating as pagan solstice celebrations and evolving with the Christ Mass, has had core common themes from the Norsemen to modern Christian celebrations; that of hope for the new sun/year, goodwill toward others, and gifts of importance for those in need.

Let's stand down from the religiously-inspired bickering and give each other the gift of silence.

Let's extend goodwill toward those we used to engage in heated debate.

Let's show hope for a new year.

One week, starting now.
edit on 23-12-2013 by SkepticOverlord because: (no reason given)




posted on Dec, 23 2013 @ 12:18 AM
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I can do anything for one week. Count me in!



posted on Dec, 23 2013 @ 12:19 AM
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Right you are skeptic, and I for one am guilty as anyone fending off the critics of my viewpoints. There has to exist a middle ground where everyone can dwell and support each other as humans with some micron of a real existance. If by a chance there are more advanced beings in our backyard, it would be fantastic for them to think that we have evolved as a species to move up the ladder of evolution that we know we can achieve. For such an self proclaimed advanced people, we have much to learn, but first we must learn to coexist and strive for this middle ground that looks so elusive where I sit...


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posted on Dec, 23 2013 @ 12:22 AM
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That post deserves a huge fist bump.

WHY is there no ATS fist bump emoticon?

In loo of that:



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posted on Dec, 23 2013 @ 12:23 AM
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This fits right in with a subtle yet long evolving change in my expression towards this topic.

Count me in.

As good as a rant with a coffee in the morning goes when it's against this theme, I know too many people who are religious who I may be offending with some of my words.

Id rather wish them a merry christmas and a happy new year than argue beliefs that neither of us are going to change.




posted on Dec, 23 2013 @ 12:27 AM
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Bingo!

It's about time someone finally laid it out properly!

I could not have said it better myself.



posted on Dec, 23 2013 @ 12:32 AM
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First of all, well said! And about damned time as well... The collective cult of personality that we attach such monikers as "TPTB", "MSM", et al has been very good at spinning emotion into the issues for that reason alone; people tend to get emotional and discard any rational thought... the whole "Duck Dynasty vs. A&E" is a perfect example. They took his beliefs and spun them in a way simply to incite anger. It is both elegant and insidious...

...how many times has that media spun anger spilled out on the pages here at ATS? When it does, we become just as bad as "TPTB". Religion, of course, is always a "button pusher"... because faith is very personal. Any true faithful person welcomes a challenge to their beliefs, because that is how we learn and grow and our faith evolves. It is when challenging someones faith turns into berating their faith... that is when things get ugly. That is saddening...

I guess we all need to be more cognizant of that fact... and keep this wonderful little patch of cyberspace a place to exchange and question ideas... not a place to bash and brutalize anyone that we may disagree with...

I think the MSM does that enough for all of us...


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posted on Dec, 23 2013 @ 12:53 AM
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My mother tried to kill herself 30 years ago after health issues drained my parents savings to the point were christmas was not an option. She felt so low and hurt so bad she thought we would be better off without her. Suicide is almost never an option afaik. This christmas I will have to submit my two boys to the same treatment for the same reasons as my mother. I literally broke my back working at a veteran's home in a skilled care environment. It has been a long hard road to get this far yet its not going to be enough this year. The difference is I know just how much my sons need me just like i needed her. Just like i didnt care about toys more than my mom they wont bat an eye. Things will get better and worse but all that matters is who we are and those we love. Even if its a memory....
Merry Christmas everyone and thanks for listening



posted on Dec, 23 2013 @ 01:04 AM
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reply to post by crawley
 


You will be in our prayers and I think that is a very powerful thing indeed.



posted on Dec, 23 2013 @ 01:12 AM
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Hear, Hear...

Well said old chap.

Count me in big time and let us all deny ignorance together as one big family.

Kindest respects

Rodinus
edit on 23-12-2013 by Rodinus because: Crap spelling



posted on Dec, 23 2013 @ 01:22 AM
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I really enjoy making contributions (as apart from mere reactive-responses) to this board. I sometimes feel jealous of the love-fest exhibited amongst the more prolific posters because I actually feel the same way about all of you, but my telling you so is nearly pointless as you likely will not recall ever interacting with me.

so anyways. I've been here regularly for quite a while now and I love ATS. still do.

it also makes me sad to watch it become a crappy sideshow.


this is not a sideshow.... its the main event.



posted on Dec, 23 2013 @ 01:32 AM
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reply to post by SkepticOverlord
 


You want a week and I want a life.

Funny I agree with jesus over religious people.

Love yourself, and love everyone else.

We are the only ones here.

I hope ATS can survive, but the world is in a fall. Consciousness, is failing.

Accepting the world we live in hashtag tweet lol omg commercial commercial and buy, is easy enough. Accepting each other should be even more easy.

I don't want everybody to be like me. I'm boring enough on my own.
edit on 12/23/2013 by Dustytoad because: (no reason given)


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posted on Dec, 23 2013 @ 01:44 AM
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I am relatively new here perhaps I can offer a different perspective,you have on your site about the last vestiges of intelligent life left on the internet,there are websites where you will be banned if you are not liberal or banned if you are not conservative,heck theres one competitor of yours that bans entire service providers if one person on that network offends his sensabilities.

Then there are the endless trolls who wait to launch into attack and poo poo anyone who is not conforming to their perceptions,I have given up elsewhere on financial posts as they are duly ignored the fed has pumped 27 trillion into Wall Street since 2008 but no one cares but if you start a thread titled I just peed my pants ask me a question you'll get pages of replies.

Yes the world is getting stupider personally I think Steve Jobs the second greatest contributor to human stupidity since Mr Baird,education levels are falling and people are now occupied with mindless entrtainment,moral standards are falling etc and some of that will rub of here...but compared to elsewhere your not necessarily doing to badly.

Merry Christmas



posted on Dec, 23 2013 @ 01:50 AM
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tgidkp
I really enjoy making contributions (as apart from mere reactive-responses) to this board. I sometimes feel jealous of the love-fest exhibited amongst the more prolific posters because I actually feel the same way about all of you, but my telling you so is nearly pointless as you likely will not recall ever interacting with me.

so anyways. I've been here regularly for quite a while now and I love ATS. still do.

it also makes me sad to watch it become a crappy sideshow.


this is not a sideshow.... its the main event.


Would you mind if i interact with you?

In a way i understand what you are saying... BUT...

However... I would like to add just a little personal note and please correct me if you think i am wrong...

This is not the main event.... it's a bit like a French menu in a decent French restaurant (yep i live in France)... AND THE WINE IS GREAT! (especially if your wifes parents have a vineyard like mine!)

ATS is just the hors d'oeuvres of a marvellous journey into a worldwide menu of respect, tolerance and total denial of igorance... ATS is also that nice bottle of Château St Georges, St Emilion 1966 that you have been waiting to be opened for so many years....

Once you opened it and tasted "déguster" if you like... YOU WANT MORE!!!... MUCH MORE!!!!...

Wait for the main course, cheese, "trou de Normande" and then the desserte!...

Long live the spirit of ATS.

Kindest respects

Rodinus
edit on 23-12-2013 by Rodinus because: Crap spelling



posted on Dec, 23 2013 @ 02:03 AM
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I was just having a discussion tonight with a group of good friends about this same affect in society as a whole. We demonstrate intolerance, while at the same time yelling to be tolerant.

I really believe that all this very public bickering is carefully orchestrated to keep us all...distracted. And sad. Much easier to control us that way.

I so agree with SO...let ATS stay above the games and not fall victim. If we do, how can we still deny ignorance?

Merry Christmas, and look to all that is good in your life.



posted on Dec, 23 2013 @ 02:16 AM
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following is so super off-topic. apologies.

reply to post by Rodinus
 


whereas mine was a clever sound bite, after reading yours I am feeling hungry for far more than a bite!

I cannot say for certain if i have ever had a meal with more than three courses, you know, like at taco bell. they have cheese there. mmmmmm.... cheeeese. drool.

perhaps I should seek nourishment from other sources. but I usually enjoy the offerings at this establishment the best. I am not certain this metaphor is holding together very well. am I doing it rite?

(taco bell? no way. gross.)
edit on 23-12-2013 by tgidkp because: bad children. stay on topic.



posted on Dec, 23 2013 @ 02:23 AM
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Well said.

After many years of reading the threads, I joined in the hope of taking part in debate. It seems though that I joined around the time of a change and debate became argument.

A group of people that refused to be pigeon-holed appealed to me but I see far too many people finger pointing and saying 'you loony liberal' or 'you bigot red neck'.

I for one would like to move on to more cohesive and peaceful discussions and discovery.
One week would be a good start.



posted on Dec, 23 2013 @ 02:26 AM
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I'll try - but people used to have a lot more freedoms than they do now, they used to be able to have their *own* thoughts that weren't manufactured by others. These days, it can be super hard to get real news and real facts, and the center is losing ground.

I'm literally feeling so much peer pressure to conform in every little way possible, that it is ridiculous.



posted on Dec, 23 2013 @ 02:27 AM
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b14warrior
Well said.

After many years of reading the threads, I joined in the hope of taking part in debate. It seems though that I joined around the time of a change and debate became argument.



Well liberals used to engage in real debate - but sometime during the Obama administration, they stopped doing that as much - and just assumed they were right about everything - now there is very little dialogue between sides, it seems like.

Even when Obama is pushing for N.S.A. surveillance, which is very totalitarian... I don't see much real debate about it...
edit on 23amMon, 23 Dec 2013 02:29:42 -0600kbamkAmerica/Chicago by darkbake because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 23 2013 @ 02:29 AM
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reply to post by SkepticOverlord
 

Given your reasons for suggesting silence, it's not clear whether you're also suggesting silence for positive religious contributions which don't involve attacking anybody (and somehow manage to avoid the attention of the flamers).
However, my threads will be taking a Christmas break as well.





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