In the name of belated wisdom

by Kent 51 Replies latest jw friends

  • Kent

    If we take a critical view on the last week’s events on this board, there is maybe a thing or two to consider. The board has seen a kind of “war”, and sarcasms and caustic remarks have been more the rule than the exception in some threads. Did we learn anything from this?

    I have been on the net for about 7 years, and I have seen lots of “Flame-wars”. Usually these ends up adding something positive to the community or the forum where the war raged, and it’s much like a thunderstorm. After a real heavy storm, the air is much better. It’s cleaned.

    But there is a real big difference between a thunderstorm and a “war” in a forum like this one. A thunderstorm does come no matter what we do. We have no saying in that question – but we do have a saying if we will allow a war to take place!

    In any wars people gets hurt, some might even be killed! This is just the same when a war is raging in a forum like this one. And in the name of belated wisdom we might ask ourselves a few questions.

    1) Why did this thing start in the first place?
    2) What did trigger the event?
    3) Why did things “get out of hand”
    4) Can we learn anything from the experience?
    Important details to remember:
    I and others as well has mentioned the difference between people from different places in the world. Different words have different meanings to different people different places. This is a fact, whether we acknowledge it or not. The fact that I myself has been online for years doesn’t stop me for making an ass of myself every now and then because of this fact. I simply forget to take into consideration certain elements of difference – difference I might call pure hypocrisy if it happened/was here in Norway.

    Let me try to explain a little something I personally feel is extremely important. In Scandinavia we have a culture for saying what we feel, and being rather straight forward about it. This means we may yell to each other sometimes, and we may have a quarrel. This is healthily, a clean bill of health! And why is that?

    As I said, a thunderstorm cleanses the air, and a quarrel can also help cleaning the air. You get some pressure out, you vent – and you feel better afterwards. We’re sort of used to it, and we have no problems with this – normally. Not compared to many other cultures, where I have a feeling the American culture is the most cautious in this respect.

    And why is that? Well, I guess this has a lot to do with the system itself. In Norway, and more or less all of Europe, I can yell at another “idiot” behind the steering wheel, show him the finger, and tell him to return his driving-license to the Post Office – which probably was where he got it. In south of Europe people do have a horn on the car for using it – and they do – all the time. Try to be 0,2 seconds late when the lights gets green! No problem, usually. Nobody turns down the window, pulls a big 44 magnum at you and blows your god damned head off!

    That may happen in the US of A, I’ve heard – and such reactions might produce a bit of caution in the way one communicates with others. If I have to stop in a crossing, I don’t give a shit what lane I’m in. I don’t need to be as far to the middle of the road as possible – to try to avoid some maniac jumping into my car! This doesn’t normally happen.

    USA is a multicultural country, and so are most others these days. But there has been lots of trouble in the US, from the times of the slave-trade and to today. The US freedom was made by a bunch of slave owners, that wanted more freedom for themselves, basically – and the country conscience isn’t the best in this respect. Lots of minority groups, and the result is that everyone is scared shitless to say anything provoking. The national sport is being offended in the first place, and if the offended person does have a big fuckin’ gun – BANG!!!!

    I can understand that. I can understand that we are different, and I can understand people being offended for a reason. If someone should use the word “colored”, be sure someone is offended. “Colored people” isn’t good. Blacks are terrible, negro isn’t good, and nigger is absolutely awful. I can understand why people are offended by the word “nigger” (even though negroes uses that name themselves) , but I can’t understand why anyone should be offended by the other words mentioned. And what happens when someone – from Norway, Sweden or FarGoneistan uses a word like that!

    BAAAAD feelings. He used THE word! Buuu! Let’s teach this little bugger what’s acceptable here.

    Shit happens
    Norm wrote an excellent post about how he willfully used an “F” word on the old JesWit – in a dead serious post. ONE FUCKING WORD! The rest were interesting, well written, and absolutely worth while reading. But NOBODY was interested in discussing that. He used the “F”word!

    If someone on a board reads something, and they do find expressions they don’t like, words they hate, meanings they disgust and so on, would it be advisable to do the following?

    1) Try to find out what was actually said in the post, instead of what words were used.
    2) Is the writer a Native American (what a joke, nobody really are “native” – except some people in Africa where it all started!), English, Canadian or an Aussie? Is it absolutely certain this barefaced, impudent, cheeky, impertinent asshole really meant it the way we thought he did in the first few seconds? Could our interpretation maybe be slightly different than intended by the writer?
    3) What’s the real reason for our anger?

    OK, we agree with ourselves that this barefaced, impudent, cheeky, impertinent asshole really meant it the way we thought he did, and he shall learn this is not the way to talk to ME! OR to my friends. I will take on my white armor; ride out into war to protect God, country, friends and family.

    A War is on!
    So, we do post an fuming message telling this moron he’s really dim-witted. Don’t come here believing you are something. “You’re nothing but an useless nobody”. We try to be as caustic as possible, just within the limits of what’s acceptable.

    Acceptable TO US that is!

    The “moron” who reads our angry message gets pissed off! (What a looser!) He answers back (What the fuck does he think he’s doing?), and he does NOT stay within accepted limits (Who the Hell does he think he is?). He stepped outside the limits acceptable to us! The posting might be entirely acceptable where he’s from, but who cares! We don’t accept such shit from a no good moron that doesn’t even know how to behave where WE live. He’s rude, and we feel we in just anger are authorized to teach him a thing or two. We’re not interested at all if this is acceptable anywhere else – we don’t like it, and that’s it!

    As I said, shit happens – and the “moron” doesn’t understand. He’s pissed off, and he says so – maybe not in the nicest manner – but his opinions are loud and clear. At this point nobody is really interested in what really STARTED this shit, but it’s a SITUATION here! Friends rush into the fight, possibly from both camps, and mud slinging soon becomes a reality.

    And, folks – we have a war going!

    My humble opinion
    I’m fully aware I have stretched quite a few limits in my lifetime, and I admit I on purpose have provoked the good people on this and other forums. And I had a few reasons for doing so. I do not say that I always am right (I am most of the time, though, he, he), but no matter right or wrong, my reasons for behaving like an asshole some times is these:

    1) I hate the fuckin hypocrisy using F*** You! And ¤#%#/=)! It’s obvious for any idiot what the writer do mean to say, so why not say it – or use another word!
    2) I hate to see well written messages are blown away by (in my opinion) morons that are unable to see what is actually written, and use all the energy to discuss the horrible man who used the “F” word!
    3) I hate to see people getting hurt!

    The last statement, no 3, might seem strange – but it’s not. I have been watching what has been going on in never ending threads, slinging mud all over the place, character assassinations, caustic remarks all over the place. And I’ve been on the net long enough to know this only leads to war. And – in war people DO GET HURT! It’s NO WAY to avoid this – and I just wanted to show that these things do accelerate rather quickly.

    People, who are normally calm, jumps down from the fence – and chooses sides. Even if they try NOT to chose sides, but try their best to reflect on a situation and have their saying, they can become a target by the “Cyber-mob”. Just now poor JAVA is the game, he’s the one to be hunted down by the wolf-pack this time. But can’t you see folks; this is the way these things start!

    Please – the last week has showed us all what can happen, and it can be much worse – believe me. I regret I overstepped by forgetting to take the necessary considerations, and I have asked the good people on the board to forgive that error. But – the general idea was to show War isn’t really fun! It hurts, people gets hurt – better live in peace.

    I’m not anyone putting myself up on a pedestal saying I know everything best – but I do believe a little belated wisdom can come in handy every now and then.
    Love ya all, Folks! Even the ones with whom I have “been in battle”. I never let this stuff be personal – and I never put any prestige into it. If we do, we have lost from the start.

    Have a beer for me, will ya?

    Yakki Da


    "The only difference between God and Adolf Hitler is that God is more proficient at genocide."

    Daily News On The Watchtower and the Jehovah's Witnesses:

  • unclebruce

    Interesting post brother Steinhaug.

    Remind me to take agro pills and earplugs when I visit Norway. Me? Give me a home amoung the gum trees, with lots o' plum trees, a dog or two and a kangaroo, vegies down the back, flowers by the fence, where rarely a raised voice is heard even when ya step in a turd and an old rocking chair ... la la la

    unclebruce, sucked into norms assole thingy.

  • Prisca

    An interesting post, Kent.

    So does this mean you are going to do your part to avoid perpetuating the wars on this board?

    See, it's one thing to see a war start. You described it quite well : one person writes something, another person sees it and is incensed, writes a scathing reply, the first person replies in kind, and then it's on for young and old.

    But when I see people constantly replying to posts in inflammatory ways using personal insults and the like, tells me the person is more interested in creating conflict, and in making him/herself appear grander/smarter/superior to the person they address in their post.

    Sadly then, any good posts the insulter may have made is lost amongst the insults and profanity.

    Rhetorical questions :

    If someone writes something you don't agree with, why the need to call them a "moron", simply because you don't like what they said?

    Why resort to insults and name-calling, when a well-worded reply stating your thoughts on tha matter will have a better effect?

    And if, heaven forbid, someone calls YOU a "moron" or worse, why the need to drag yourself down to their level and reply in kind?

    Then, if the discussion is obviously going no where, why do people perpetuate the war by continuing the name-calling, making references to unrelated issues, and even berating the poster who choses to not continue the fighting?

    If a discussion is going no where, it is better to simply excuse yourself from the discussion and chill out. It is better to walk away gracefully, than continue to fight in a losing battle.

    I like a healthy debate like anyone else. But when the persons participating result to name-calling, insults and profanity, the "discussion" has degraded into an uncalled-for war of words and personalities.

    I think we need to remember that there are plenty of lurkers here, many may be Witnesses who are looking for help, but may be turned away by what they consider disgusting speech and constant fighting.

    We need to show to people that being an ex-witness does not mean that we have become ruder and nasty. Rather, we need to show that we are happier, healthier, and better all round than we were as Witnesses.

    Otherwise, they may decide being a witness is better than those angry and bitter apostates. And we don't want that, do we?

  • unclebruce

    G'day Prisca,

    We need to show to people that being an ex-witness does not mean that we have become ruder and nasty. Rather, we need to show that we are happier, healthier, and better all round than we were as Witnesses.

    No-one said apostates are any happier or better adjusted to life than anyone else. Fact is, when we lift that fake personality over layer, (and not just give it a make-over by joining another bible club) who knows what will emerge other than the true self in all it's guts and gory .. um .. nuts and glory?

    Otherwise, they may decide being a witness is better than those angry and bitter apostates. And we don't want that, do we?

    Well, as it stands, quite a few apostates are angry and bitter. These are perfectly legitimate and understandable emotions in the light of the hurt perpetrated by the WBTS. You and I might be internally calm enough to move on without firing an angry shot back but I don't decry those that do. I'd rather see people being themselves than reading sugar coated posts as if we're on personality supressants. Don't take this personally Prisca (I think you're cool) but I don't trust anybody who presumes to speak for the JW lurker and don't think any of us should change our posting style to suit them (see my old post "the lurker myth" :)

    That being said there are bullys here. (mostly h20 rejects ;) I can write the names of half a dozen guys who write long insightful posts but who haven't got past kindergarden school mentality when it comes to human relationships. These blokes (and for some reason the wolf-gang mentality seems to afflict men more than women) have very flat egos (shallow but over inflated ;) and one good sign is that they won't 'go out on a limb' in case they're wrong and can't bring themselves to apologise. Another trait is that they stand callouslly by and let others be berated and pummelled into the ground by one of their tunnel visioned cronies. Several days ago I got mad and wrote a dozen or so full pages venting my spleen against these boofheads but threw it all in the bin (cleared my head at least) Before anyone gets the wrong idea - Kent is a gentleman as is the Farkelmeister.

    You're a cool, calm woman Prisca, a real asset to this or any other board. I get the feeling that like me, the JW experience wasn't the worst thing to have happened in your life.

    cheers, unclebruce

    PS: I'd rather live without a pretty mask and let others suffer the eyesore

  • Prisca

    Hey Unc,

    You may not be as gorgeous as Johnnie from Big Brother but I wouldn't say you're an eyesore.

    I'd rather see people being themselves than reading sugar coated posts as if we're on personality supressants.

    I agree with you there. If people want that, they can go to WOL.

    I like how you describe the "boof-heads" (is that solely an Aussie term, or will the others know what we're talking about?) I think many are scared off by the "bullies" and fear to have their say, lest they become the next victims. I was like that, until I was incensed enough by the warlords here that I decided to speak up. Then I became a "victim" of some of these "bullies". I wasn't surprised, but thought it was an interesting display of so-called adults on this board.

    Ah well, you live and learn.

  • Kent

    Ah well, you live and learn

    That's what it's all about, Prisca.

    Unclebruce said:

    I'd rather see people being themselves than reading sugar coated posts as if we're on personality supressants.

    And that's absolutely true! As long as we are ourselves, and behave like human beings - nobody has any reason for being insulted, feel like targets or victims, or in other ways feel sorry for themselves.

    We are living in a real world - and in the real world there is real people, real problems, real differences. Why try to make a "DisneyWorld" here? That would be completely false!

    Yakki Da


    "The only difference between God and Adolf Hitler is that God is more proficient at genocide."

    Daily News On The Watchtower and the Jehovah's Witnesses:

  • larc

    Some thoughts,

    I came to this place a little over 6 months ago, and I really like it here. Even though I have been out a long time and have no big emotional issues anymore, I was still a little nervous when I first posted here, wanting to be accepted and all. I try to remember that early feeling. I think it is very difficult for the newbie, who may be highly emotional due to recent WT damage, so I try to keep them in mind.

    Sometimes, in the heat of battle, I have lashed out at people, but I have apologized on such occassions, seem to be friends with those folks.

    The ones that really push my buttons are pompous, self righteous fundies and Witnesses. My approach has been to let them run their verbiage awhile, then question their weakest point. Usually, they spew vidictive hatred all over me, and the loving facade evaporates. While doing this, I am thinking, "What an idiot," but I don't write it. I must say, I enjoy watching their logic and their emotions fall apart.

    As far a language in the US goes, I think my experience at my favorite neighborhood bar is a good illustration. Customers are allowed to cuss, tell off color jokes and argue. However, there are limits. No really foul jokes in front of women, no yelling in the heat of an agruement, and no frequent use of the F word. It might be used occasionally in a moment of expasperation, but not on a regular basis. If customers do not follow the rules, they are warned. If they continue they are barred temporarily, and must apologize. If they are chronic, they are history. Yes, my favorite bar is a "wordly place", but it does set some limits.

  • unclebruce

    Interesting post Larc,

    You can play a lot of mind games with genuine JWs .. it's real fun and we have all the buttons - they don't realise they're playing with a marked deck and we can see three or more moves ahead. I like to play the trick of suddenly becomming a calm voice of reason .. often, after they've vented a bit, they feel silly and start apologising themselves .. oh to study human psychiatry .. couldn't we be manipulative bastards then.

    cheers, excitable unc.

    PS: I have been posting on one forum with all JW's and maybe one or two other sneaky apostates .. they think I'm a font of wisdom (all I do is play it very straight and quote directly from the few watchtower publications I have .. especially the reasoning book)

    PRISCA - Johnnies a lot tidier than me too go the bumdance!

  • larc


    I don't know why they come here. It must be their supreme confidence in being completely right. They don't realize that there are hundreds of people here who know everything they know and a whole lot more. If they met one us at the door, they would likely beat a hasty retreat, yet here, they try to take on a bunch on us. Go figure.

  • unclebruce

    G'day Larc,

    Each of those 'genuine jw's' regularly comming here has their own personal problems and feels more comfortable with you guys and gals than they ever could at a kingdom hall. If you look at them one by one I believe you'll find it so. Most, like YouKnow, Bathory, Yadirf and Fred Hall aren't as ignorant as they often appear to the untrained eye and just can't stomach what they see as the arrogant self righteousness and anti-watchtower bile of the big apostates. (iconoclasts to a man)

    cheers, unc.

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