Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Ten Commandments?

Clayton writes:

Tired of family dinners turning into food fights (or, even worse, occasions of deliberate food poisoning)?

Then maybe you'd be willing to join in a little project designed to make the blogosphere a place of virtual communion.

Having felt the heat of the venom of the stupid, I'm in.... And everyone else who thinks dialogue should exude civility should be, too. Clayton's taking suggestions for "Ten Commandments of the Blogosphere" at his place (link above), and they're more than welcome in the comments box here as well.

These are some stream-of-consciousness ideas:

  • Take responsibility -- you must be the change you seek in others.
  • Don't start hurling epithets at someone just because you don't like them and can't explain why. If you have a logical beef, use logic to justify it.
  • Conservatives aren't bad. Liberals aren't bad. But people who start defending secular political policy by claiming that "God has called me to be conservative/liberal, and you're not Catholic unless you think like me" are very bad. Leave God alone -- he doesn't work on a four-year cycle.
  • Mel Gibson is to Catholicism what Tom Cruise is to Scientology. Discuss.
  • As a general rule (exceptional circumstances notwithstanding), anyone who hides behind anonymity has no right to be taken seriously.
  • Threats, intimidation and bullying are the favored tools of idiots and cowards who can't engage others in words.
  • What is referred to in the vernacular as the "Roman" rite is a semantic error -- given its geographic origins in Northern Europe, it is more accurately called the "Gallo-Germanic" rite. It is as Roman as Freedom fries.
  • Just because B16 may not be infallible in certain areas doesn't mean his viewpoint can automatically be rejected when he says something about them you disagree with. He's smarter than the lot of us, and that deserves respect.
  • If you don't like what someone's saying, hold. your. fire. Take a step back and as opposed to flaming, talk to them. Ask respectful questions. Learn the other side. Not only will you come out better informed, you'll be doing the right thing.
OK, so that's nine. Discussion and feedback welcome.



Blogger Jeff said...

I like the last one especially. I'm not sure what I think YOU should do about that one, though, Rocco.

On the one hand, I think you are sometimes guilty yourself of violating it. On the other, you want to keep things lively by poking, prodding, and provoking. The danger with being perfectly "fair" is that you end up being saccharine.

On the other hand, if you are provocative, you shouldn't complain too bitterly if you provoke people, right? You should expect that if you poke at people you will get emotional responses, whether you or your reader is the one at fault on a particular issue.

6/7/05 15:30  
Blogger Stephen Hand said...

They are all very wise. It's good to be reminded of them from time to time, especially in contexts where religion and political convictions are at issue.

I know I have been guilty at times in comment boxes at certain blogs.
So there's room and Hope for growth!

Thanks for the reminders, friend.


6/7/05 16:06  

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