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Political Stereotypes: A Discussion

Merc

Problematic Shitlord
V.I.P.
Let's face it, Mature Discussion is not as active as it once was. Many people don't post there because they find the environment hostile and immature and to be honest, I think the topic is one of the big issue. Now this isn't about naming names and I know I've done this once or twice in my time here (though I do my best not to) but I think if we want actual intelligent discussions to happen here, people need to let go of these petty stereotypes.

You see people posting things like, "republican bigot," "liberal pussy", "conservative greed" and they don't help anything. Now, sometimes it's just a slip where a discussion gets heated and people get upset and want to lash out or mock others (users or not). However, by the same token it feels like there are some people who are not only convinced these things are universally true but that they should be encouraged and repeated. Now I sort of singled out GF here but it's obvious we're not unique. A lot of public and televised discussion falls into this childish tactic.

Do you find yourself contributing to this problem? How have you tried to help fix your ways of speaking/debating?
 

SmilinSilhouette

Registered Member
A few thoughts:

It would seem to me that MD is quite active, not just from "veteran" posters but a lot of good new members as well.

Stereotypes are here to stay, for better or worse. But it does seem to me that those of us on the right are so used to being called racist, bigot, sexist, homophobe, islamaphobe, etc. that we just laugh it off as a typical no argument response.

You will never know if generalizations are deeply held convictions or a rhetorical tool if you don't engage in the discussion and debate the topic.

I don't think it needs "fixing". It's a tough world out here, get used to it. If you are unprepared to defend your assertions, take criticism, or afraid to admit errors, then maybe this sandbox ain't for you.

It is all about competing in the arena of ideas. Competition gets a little rough sometimes.
 

Merc

Problematic Shitlord
V.I.P.
It would seem to me that MD is quite active, not just from "veteran" posters but a lot of good new members as well.
It seems that way, but MD used to be a place where everyone posted. There wasn't just an "MD crowd". I know a few vets will back me on that one.

Stereotypes are here to stay, for better or worse.
Is that really a good enough reason to validate such a wrongful and ineffective manner of speaking/debating?

You will never know if generalizations are deeply held convictions or a rhetorical tool if you don't engage in the discussion and debate the topic.
It doesn't matter how deep they run. Using them is a pure and clear sign of a lack of rational thought since by definition, stereotypes are generalizations of vast groups of people. Thus, they are completely worthless in any discussion where people are trying to honestly and civilly share ideas.

I don't think it needs "fixing". It's a tough world out here, get used to it. If you are unprepared to defend your assertions, take criticism, or afraid to admit errors, then maybe this sandbox ain't for you.
That whole "deal with it" mentality is hardly a reasonable defense. Of course it needs fixing. It's a hammer without a head, a tool that does no good and only degrades political discourse. We always talk about how divided we are and it's clear why. Our vernacular contains such polarizing language and methodology that its no wonder the dichotomy of left vs. right is forever doomed to failure.

Besides, if Obama came out tomorrow and said, "All those gun-humping bigots on the right need to clean their act up" we would see at least seven to eight different threads from you all with variations of "Obama should be dipped and gasoline and set on fire" :lol: I can't imagine if someone told you "It's a tough world, deal with it" you'd be okay with that answer.
 

SmilinSilhouette

Registered Member
It seems that way, but MD used to be a place where everyone posted. There wasn't just an "MD crowd". I know a few vets will back me on that one.
Well, as long as I have been here it seems there is an MD crowd. My opinion is that when I joined that crowd was seriously left-leaning, now it seems more balanced with vigorous debate coming from both sides.

Is that really a good enough reason to validate such a wrongful and ineffective manner of speaking/debating?
To me, debate is about making valid intellectual points. Rhetoric is a useful tool in that regard. Stereotypes and generalizations are useful and, to some extent, both right and wrong. The intelligent debater can tell the difference and seize the opportunity to use it to their advantage or refute the opposing view.
It doesn't matter how deep they run. Using them is a pure and clear sign of a lack of rational thought since by definition, stereotypes are generalizations of vast groups of people. Thus, they are completely worthless in any discussion where people are trying to honestly and civilly share ideas.
I dunno, I recall entertaining lots of ideas from posters with whom I disagree. QB & Neo immediately come to mind.

That whole "deal with it" mentality is hardly a reasonable defense. Of course it needs fixing. It's a hammer without a head, a tool that does no good and only degrades political discourse. We always talk about how divided we are and it's clear why. Our vernacular contains such polarizing language and methodology that its no wonder the dichotomy of left vs. right is forever doomed to failure.
Something about grant me the serenity to accept what can not be changed?
Besides, if Obama came out tomorrow and said, "All those gun-humping bigots on the right need to clean their act up" we would see at least seven to eight different threads from you all with variations of "Obama should be dipped and gasoline and set on fire" :lol: I can't imagine if someone told you "It's a tough world, deal with it" you'd be okay with that answer.
:lol: What day doesn't Obama say something to that effect? It would be refreshing if he just came out and said it directly, instead if his usual double-talk. Yet I don't recall a single post calling for violence against our president, even though he supports and advocates for intimidation (if not violence) against our side.
 

Merc

Problematic Shitlord
V.I.P.
Well, as long as I have been here it seems there is an MD crowd. My opinion is that when I joined that crowd was seriously left-leaning, now it seems more balanced with vigorous debate coming from both sides.
. . . yes, there is an MD crowd. My point was that there never was one since everyone felt okay posting there. Make a poll, I bet you there'd be a fair amount of people who don't like posting in MD anymore. Also, it was never left leaning, it's just a matter of perception. People tend to see their enemies, so to say, far earlier than they see their friends.

To me, debate is about making valid intellectual points. Rhetoric is a useful tool in that regard. Stereotypes and generalizations are useful and, to some extent, both right and wrong. The intelligent debater can tell the difference and seize the opportunity to use it to their advantage or refute the opposing view.
Stereotypes are never useful in a debate. They are neither right nor wrong, just what they are: generalizations. They aren't tools and they don't add to a debate. Intelligent discussion is simply ruined by them. They are only tools if your goal is to derail the debate or stir up problems. You say that to you, a debate is about valid intellectual points. Well, what is valid or intellectual about a stereotype?

I dunno, I recall entertaining lots of ideas from posters with whom I disagree. QB & Neo immediately come to mind.
I'm not sure you followed what I was saying. I said nothing about disagreeing with people, I was saying that people use them when they're lazy or not thinking through (or not wanting to for that matter).

Something about grant me the serenity to accept what can not be changed?
If you take joy in resisting change then so be it. Things like this change constantly, it's just over periods of time as cultures grow and move.

:lol: What day doesn't Obama say something to that effect? It would be refreshing if he just came out and said it directly, instead if his usual double-talk. Yet I don't recall a single post calling for violence against our president, even though he supports and advocates for intimidation (if not violence) against our side.
I never said that you have ever called for violence, FYI.

I'm not sure what the point of that last comment was since both democrats AND republicans are pretty good at voting for things that make both of our lives quite miserable including intimidation and acts that restrict yours and my own freedoms.
 

Duckbang

Registered Member
I find that people who use those stereotypes most prolifically tend to fit the bill for a stereotype at another extreme.
 

CaptainObvious

Son of Liberty
V.I.P.
I'm going to be honest, Cons, since you asked. I find you generalize and stereotype probably more than anyone else here. I think you post more "Democrats are" "Republicans are" "TeaPartiers are" then make a broad general claim that impugns all. You also make general statements about ALL politicians and claim the electorate are idiots for believing in certain things. But maybe that's just my opinion.

A couple of points. Yes when I joined MD was MUCH more left-leaning than it is now. To deny that is not arguing in reality. Secondly, I don't know why it isn't as active as it used to be but to be frank I really don't care. All I care about is backing up your claim with condescension and without resorting to "homophobe" "islamaphobe" and other such nonsense. Thirdly, I find inconsistency aggravating. If you're going to accuse say Rush Limbaugh of using divisive rhetoric, for example, then don't excuse divisive behavior from the Left. To not do so is dishonest.
 

Merc

Problematic Shitlord
V.I.P.
I'm going to be honest, Cons, since you asked. I find you generalize and stereotype probably more than anyone else here. I think you post more "Democrats are" "Republicans are" "TeaPartiers are" then make a broad general claim that impugns all. You also make general statements about ALL politicians and claim the electorate are idiots for believing in certain things. But maybe that's just my opinion.
You know, that could have been done in a PM. You don't need to derail the thread like that please and thank you.

A couple of points. Yes when I joined MD was MUCH more left-leaning than it is now. To deny that is not arguing in reality.
If you say so. Like religion, you're allowed to believe what you want.

Secondly, I don't know why it isn't as active as it used to be but to be frank I really don't care. All I care about is backing up your claim with condescension and without resorting to "homophobe" "islamaphobe" and other such nonsense. Thirdly, I find inconsistency aggravating. If you're going to accuse say Rush Limbaugh of using divisive rhetoric, for example, then don't excuse divisive behavior from the Left. To not do so is dishonest.
Quote a post of mine where I say, "the left is free of divisive rhetoric. Of course, I could save you the time and energy with the clear and obvious answer: I never have. Are you done debating me or are you going to debate the thread at hand?
 

CaptainObvious

Son of Liberty
V.I.P.
You know, that could have been done in a PM. You don't need to derail the thread like that please and thank you.
You said people do that but you rarely do. I disagree. That was the statement you made in the OP, correct?



If you say so. Like religion, you're allowed to believe what you want.
Good answer. You can believe what you want, I'll continue to believe in reality. Not that it really matters, I couldn't care less. But it is true it was much more left leaning.


Quote a post of mine where I say, "the left is free of divisive rhetoric. Of course, I could save you the time and energy with the clear and obvious answer: I never have. Are you done debating me or are you going to debate the thread at hand?
I wasn't talking about YOU personally in these points. I was speaking about posters in general. In other words, I was adding, thus agreeing with you in some respects, and you take it personal. Another point I should have made.
 

Merc

Problematic Shitlord
V.I.P.
You said people do that but you rarely do. I disagree. That was the statement you made in the OP, correct?
Is my name in the title of this thread? No. If you feel like debating me, then stop doing it here because it's the wrong place.

Good answer. You can believe what you want, I'll continue to believe in reality. Not that it really matters, I couldn't care less. But it is true it was much more left leaning.
For someone lamenting condescension, you're quite fond of it. I'm not sure what's happened but you're far different of a poster than when you first started here.

I wasn't talking about YOU personally in these points. I was speaking about posters in general. In other words, I was adding, thus agreeing with you in some respects, and you take it personal. Another point I should have made.
I'll give you a tip then.

If you start a post by complaining about a specific person by addressing them directly, do not continue on addressing another audience without specifying the change in direction. Because it seems like you were speaking to me directly since you failed to change directions.
 
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