Hey peeps. I posted here for a few weeks back when I was in high school. I left mainly because to be quite frank, I felt rather alienated by almost everybody here. I know you guys have that motto where if you want to be a nerdfighter you are one, but I just did not fit in, which really surprised me... cause, you know, I'm a nice guy and all.

I decided to give it another try though, especially since the latest issues on my mind were inspired by some things Hank Green did on twitter earlier tonight.

First was this twit (side note; birds tweet, people twit):

Which I had a few problems with:

Then this came:

Which was then retwitted by a freakin' million people. And it's wrong for a lot of reasons. Hank and all the people who retwitted his message are saying to those against gay marriage for one reason or another "I don't like you, I don't wanna talk to you, I don't wanna know you", which is not the right thing to say. Breaking down communication is NOT what intellectual discourse is all about. Later Hank said something like 'I don't tolerate intolerance', well, that's not what this is about.

Speaking of tolerance, I have a few problems with the use of the word itself:

I hope this makes sense to somebody out there. Even if it doesn't, maybe you can be tolerant of me. :-P

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It's generally very hard, if possible at all, to change the mind of someone about issues like gay marriage. There's usually religious beliefs attached - and if not religious, almost always moral - and those aren't beliefs that people will give up. Personally, I don't want to associate with people whose views are so different from mine that our fundamental outlook on human rights and identity don't even match up, and I don't really care whether that shuts down the conversation or not.

I agree that people should do more than tolerate differences, but tolerance would be a pretty good starting point.
Personally, I don't want to associate with people whose views are so different from mine that our fundamental outlook on human rights and identity don't even match up, and I don't really care whether that shuts down the conversation or not.

So, you'd rather berate people, and be intolerant, of people who don't agree with you instead of talking rationally about things and possibly making a breakthrough in communication and understanding? What's the point of debate then? Why even bother? Why not just kill them? By not giving them the time of day, by not giving any respect to these people of different beliefs than your own, you are prolonging ignorant actions. You're ignoring the conflict and any attempt at a resolution. Those people aren't going to go away. Their beliefs won't die with them, they'll be carried on to their children.

I'm guessing you're not a very confrontational person. I'm not really either. However, there are some things that you have to stand up for. If it's so important to you that you will write people off and take them out of your life, then it is all the more important that you do stand up for your beliefs. To use the good and evil model... we'll have you be the good and the opposing views be the evil... If the good never fights the evil, the evil won't go away but will grow stronger. While you're writing off the opposing viewpoint, the opposition will not be writing off people who agree with you. In fact, in this particular circumstance, a lot of them will take it upon themselves to try and save you and help you to see that they are correct.

I'm rambling on and on, but... the point is you can't write people off or nothing will change. It's easier for things to stay the same and stay the way it's always been. It takes energy to make an ice cube become water, and even more to turn it into vapor. The same is true with social issues.

I hope all of that made sense.
I don't think that's what she was saying at all. I got the impression that she was simply stating that it's hard to get along with someone and discuss the tough issues when you're not on the same page. For example I find it very hard to have real friendships with people who, when any debate starts, either completely shy away or pull out their Bibles/Quran/what have you. It's hard to argue religion, not because it's innately right or wrong but because it's personal. Other people may find it hard to connect with those who don't have a religious foundation to work from.

What I'm saying is not that I'm not willing to try to understand the sources of other people's intolerance but rather that it is hard to be friends with those who are intolerant of my views. I'm not sure that's what Jamie meant but that's more the vibe I got from her statement.
If that's the case, I see the point. I don't have much trouble being friends with people whom I disagree with, even on that level (which is just about everyone I come into contact with on a daily basis), but I tend to avoid personal conversations like that if I know people are just going to get upset.
You are correct. You make sense.

It takes some stones to call someone out like this. I think he appreciates your points and agrees with you. To his credit, he apologized. This takes another fine character trait, humility, that is seen way to infrequently these days.

I knew I made the right choice when I decided to participate here.
If you are going to ridicule someone at all. Have you seen very many people change their way of thinking when others ridicule them? I'll bet zero. If you do not treat the other person with some respect, even if you would rather not, you will not change anything. You may even make matters worse.
No, all you've done is shown that his beliefs are ridiculous. To ridicute them you have to show them to be wrong in a way that makes them look even more ridiculous and to ridicute someone you have to show that holding those beliefs makes him ridiculous.

Example of showing someone his beliefs are ridiculous: The moon is not made out of cheese. If it would have been made of of cheese it would have withered away centuries ago. All (and I mean all) photos of the moon's surface and all tests done on the moon's surface shows that the moon is in fact made out of stone.

Example of ridiculing someone's beliefs: Seriously, the moon being made out of cheese? That's ridiculous!

Example of ridiculing someone for his beliefs: Come on, the moon being made out of cheese? Do you believe in fairies too?
I know I am being picky here, but ridiculing and refuting are very different actions. Thanks, though, for clearing up my understanding of what you were saying. I've read your comments before, and you never struck me as someone who would go after someone like that.
Not so much conservative Christians but fundamentalist anyone. And maybe it doesn't make since but yes, I can tolerate the "sinners" better than I can those that tell them they are sinning. I think rather than I can tolerate anything but unwillingness to understand or investigate opposing views. I'm not the best at sticking by that but it is for the most part true for me.
You don't have to be religious to be fundamentalist. While it's typically used in conjunction with religion, I don't think that necessary.
I didn't mean that your viewpoint was fundamentalist. When I wrote that comment it wasn't to in any sort of attack on your stance, merely stating that it isn't the religion but the type of argument/mindset that bothers me, not the stance or the thought.

I don't agree with you but I don't think your position is fundamentalist by any means.
I think that you make a good point. You are doing a very good job of carrying the disscussion forward in a very mature way. Kudos to you. But I have to say that i agree with Hank. The government shouldnt be allowed by us, the people, to withhold rights from a certian group of people just because of their lifestyle. Even if there are people that disagree with those groups' way of living. And that goes for every group of people, not just homosexuals. We are effectively letting the government decide how we should live our lives. If we deny the rights of others than whos to stop our rights from being denyed for some blanket reason in the future by a government that we gave the power to do so?


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