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Debates

post #1 of 56
Thread Starter 
I've seen some fairly fierce conversations on here now. I'm starting to get a handle on the different personalities attached to the handles (see: I'm clever) but I may be making some ASSumptions I shouldn't make. So instead of continuing with my merry assumptions I'll ask straight out.

How do you feel about debates? Do you tend to take them personally or do you keep them impersonal and about ideas? When someone says, "People who do 'x' are 'y'" do you feel the need to stand up for 'y' if you are part of 'x'? And most importantly (for me) how do you feel about semantics?
post #2 of 56
This should be interesting.

I've noticed that debates have cultural overtones. That in some cultures you can have NOTHING in common and literally yell at each other over coffee, and then come back tomorrow. To yell at each other over date squares.

In other cultures, different thinking is the enemy. Anyone who thinks of social, political or religious issues in a different context than you is dangerous.

I'm more the first category.
post #3 of 56
Thread Starter 
I didn't want to give my answers in the OP.

I love debates. I think they are fun. Sometimes I take it personally but I strive to keep them impersonal and about ideas. I tend to get a bee in my bonnet about blanket statements because there are very few things that are Always true or Never true and that's a personal quirk. I am really apt to argue for a point if people make a blanket statement about people who are/do something and I qualify as one of them. I love semantics. I think that the definitions of words are very important. I think that it is important to follow basic rules of arguments and when I'm not sure how to argue a point I go get my rhetoric textbook and look it up.

I often sound more harsh than I mean to. I'm very rarely trying to be a snot even when it seems like I am. Usually when I am being snarky I will say so.
post #4 of 56
Everyone on this site is just some stranger on the internet so I don't care what they think of me. I don't really take things personally because the opinions don't matter IRL. I've noticed that people online tend to be far more outspoken and say things they'd never dare say to someone in person, probably because they'd get smacked upside the head
post #5 of 56
i like to engage ideas, and if the idea is liberal enough to have multiple interpretations, i'll assert what i feel/think/believe and that i also think that it's not necessarily the only way to think about things.

oh, and i tend not to take things too personally, and feel similarly about language, rhetoric, etc.
post #6 of 56
I don't really debate. I'm not a nonconfrontational person in real life, but I don't like Internet squabbling.
post #7 of 56
I enjoy debates. I often find myself sticking up for the underdog POV much of the time, sometimes even if I don't personally agree with it myself but I can understand it even if I don't agree, KWIM? Maybe because I was somewhat picked on at school as a kid, I tend to seek out unpopular sides on things and try to understand them or at least empathize.

I know it can come across as being contrary, but really, it's just my natural inclination to question widely-held views on things. I think that's why I gravitated to MDC with its philosophy of NFL and bucking the mainstream.

One thing I can always count on here is extremely intelligently expressed perspectives, and I always learn something.

ETA: I don't take things personally on the Internet.
post #8 of 56
I love a good debate. Most of the time I'll be happy to argue either side as well. I try not to get involved in them here because I know I come off really bad. I like to do it more in real life with people who know me. It's really hard to express exactly what you mean in writing. People will pick apart the smallest detail and jump all over you for it. I guess I'm just not good enough to stand up to some of the nitpickers here.

I only get upset when people make assumption about me or when it crosses the line into a personal attack. It's fine if you don't agree with me, but that doesn't make me a bad person/mother.
post #9 of 56
I don't understand this thread at all.
post #10 of 56
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by kama'aina mama View Post
I don't understand this thread at all.
I tend to prefer to respect people's opinions/personalities. If I know someone really doesn't like to argue I will not engage with them. If I know someone really likes a fierce debate I will feel more comfortable busting out all the stops.

Really, it's entirely self-serving.
post #11 of 56
I love debates. I try always to keep debates about ideas, not the debaters. I get very frustrated when debates turn into petty personal attacks thrown back and forth. Even if I think someone is a UAV for a given belief, I'd never say so. I'll tell you I disagree, and try to back it up, without any personal anything.

I was educated in the social sciences, so empirical evidence matters to me. I get frustrated when people in a debate want to use anecdotal evidence as, well, evidence. I'll reference a good study, and then somebody says, "Well, I know someone who did this other thing!" and I wonder why I bothered.

I'm a big fan of George Lakoff, and particularly his theories about metaphor. I think truth is grounded in experience and is not objective (or if objective truth DOES exist, we do not, as humans, have access to that truth).

And at any rate, it's online, and some people have trouble minding their manners in even the most mild conversations. One of the reason I like MDC so much: it's heavily moderated. I know that drives some people nuts, but it means I spend less time filtering out the personal attacks to get to the posts that are actually about something!
post #12 of 56
Quote:
Originally Posted by nonconformnmom View Post
I enjoy debates. I often find myself sticking up for the underdog POV much of the time, sometimes even if I don't personally agree with it myself but I can understand it even if I don't agree, KWIM? Maybe because I was somewhat picked on at school as a kid, I tend to seek out unpopular sides on things and try to understand them or at least empathize.
Holy buckets, I agree with NCM about something. Now that is a first!!

I love debating, too. And have an uncanny ability to step into the underdog's shoes.
post #13 of 56
I don't debate. There's no need because I'm always right.







post #14 of 56
Quote:
Originally Posted by happyhippiemama View Post
Holy buckets, I agree with NCM about something. Now that is a first!!
I think it's very common for people to have different views on some issues, especially controversial ones like politics or religion, and still find plenty that they agree on in other areas of life. That's not so unusual.
post #15 of 56
I was being facetious...
post #16 of 56
Quote:
Originally Posted by DaughterOfKali View Post
I don't debate. There's no need because I'm always right.
Exactly. I don't see these threads as so much "debates" but more an opportunity to educate everyone else.
post #17 of 56
Quote:
Originally Posted by DaughterOfKali View Post
I don't debate. There's no need because I'm always right.







post #18 of 56
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by kama'aina mama View Post
I was being facetious...
Uhm... hi! I'm Krissy! I'm slow!
post #19 of 56
I probably used to debate more when I was quite new to MDC. Now, on the whole, I cannot be bothered. I've found that internet debates tend to be motivated too much by ego, whether it be forums or chatrooms. Maybe I've just grown too cynical in my old age

Depends also what the topic is.


Peace
post #20 of 56
Quote:
Originally Posted by kama'aina mama View Post
I was being facetious...
I was going to be facetious back, but after three tries I realized I couldn't possibly get it to look as funny as it would sound if I said it outloud.
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