Some Civility

by ufo1 6 Replies latest jw friends

  • ufo1

    It is with some hesitation that I post this as I don’t post too often, however I am on here every day and I do read about 95% of all threads. I also want to say that this is not meant in any way to insult anyone, or to single out any point of view.

    The reason I post this is that this site has been and continues to be a great place for helping those of us who have been hurt by the WT, and I don’t want that to change. I also love the exchange of ideas on the many other subjects. I have learned so much from so many of you and continue to do so. I will always be grateful for this site and for those of you on it as you all continue to teach me and really do help in this long recovery.

    However, lately I have noticed on many threads a tendency for some folks to verbally attack posters who disagree with them. While I do expect there to be many disagreements the lack of civility and mutual respect is often over the top. At times some folks will start a thread and basically post an opinion, insult anyone who doesn’t agree and then ask for folks to respond. They then seem surprised when many don’t respond. And I see this on many subjects but particularly in political and religious ones. I guess all I’m saying is let us not become like the WT and their minions and denigrate all who do not conform to our way of thinking. If we do then we are no better than those we are fleeing from.

    Thanks, ufo1

  • awildflower

    You just have to move out of threads like that if they bother you. The beauty of this site is that you can have an opinion and ignore, discuss or argue about it even. Sometimes people are having a bad day, some subjects might particularly bother someone, who knows. But to me it's more real than anything the WTS ever offered. All they have is the phony "everyone is your brother and sister, don't stumble anyone, your opinions don't matter, never ask for what you need, etc......." Just don't read the one's that make you feel discouraged, I don't. And you can tell from certain posters or how a thread is going in the first few posts to know if it's something you want to be in. That's my Opinionwf

  • AllTimeJeff

    You know, I have to say that the threads that get heated generally are in the Politics or Heated Debate threads. There is a place for that, and I think its a good thing for former JW's to stretch their muscles.

    Speaking for myself, I learn as much as I give on some of those debates. To work through the issues and learning to be a responsible informed citizen is an important step for people who leave JW's.

    It's also a good reminder to me that the world is a rough place. One selling point JW's use quite a bit is their utopian view of their "spiritual paradise", and how arguments and heated emotions really shouldn't exist.

    I agree that sustained bad feelings and anger are bad for anyone. But I know many who leave JW's are surprised to deal with the world on a different level. It's tough out there. Being a JW doesn't prepare you for that reality at all. So when I read of hot headed opinions, and people getting upset because (surprise!) people disagree with them, there is another lesson that is learned. Don't expect everyone to fall over for your thoughts. You've got to earn your way in this world, and the fact that you show up with your mere presence isn't enough to change anyone's mind.

    To me, these debates reveal those who have at least thought through some of the issues and can explain them on some level, and those who inherited them from others, and want to parrot what they hear without giving it due thought, as a responsible citizen should. (both sides politically)

    Religiously, the theistic debates that go on are just as important, for obvious reasons. Former JWs have a ton of stuff to work out on the whole god/worship question. No surprise that arguments will sometimes occur.

    I do agree though, that a more civil, less hostile tone, could be taken by many. There are times I have failed in that, although I try my best to be civil. Sometimes I fail too. Still trying to improve there.

  • AllTimeJeff

    Hi ufo1.

    In giving my opinion, I forgot to say that I appreciate this post, and in general, I do agree with what you say. My new religion is pragmaticism. (small joke there, but not by much) I do my best to deal with reality when I can.

    I think I can be a bit negative sometimes, but I am who I am, and I am where I am at, and I didn't parachute to this point in life, I lived it one day and one decision at a time. Nothing can change that fact. So my thoughts aren't likely to always be positive. That in my mind is a failing, because I don't think anything is accomplished by being negative, but I battle it a lot.

    Good thread!

  • donny

    I agree that civility should be adhered to more than it often is. I know that some topics can be quite emotional and heart felt, but even if you are trying to make a valid logical point, as soon as you resort to name calling. you have lost a lot validity in many readers minds. Too often I hear one side calling the other "stupid", "loons", "ignorant", and other assorted insults while trying to get their point of view across.


  • ufo1

    Thanks for the replies.

    I have no problem with people expressing opposing views, for that is how we learn and grow. I am all for debate and I know that when people are passionate about a topic discussions can get heated. That is just human nature.

    I think that Donny got my main point, which are the personal attacks are totally unnecessary. Actually the personal attacks distract from the message one might be trying to convey.

    ATJ - (My new religion is pragmatics.) Can I be a disciple?

  • Quentin

    An insult is only an insult to the one who feels insulted.

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