More “Reasoned Discourse”

This time OUR side gets dinged.

When I posted Another Debate Invitation Refused I did not consider (though I should have) that some of the people who read this blog would charge over to give the author of the blog and the author of the comment I was responding to what-for.

Do me a favor:

STOP.

If you can’t discuss the topic rationally without the use of invective, ad hominems and other insults, then DON’T. I don’t need nor want your “help.”

I appreciate your frustration. I understand that we are, as Dr. Michael S. Brown described it, the victims of a decades-long slow-motion hate crime, but THAT IS NO EXCUSE. If you cannot control your temper over some other person’s words and attitudes, then WHY SHOULD THEY EXPECT YOU TO BE RATIONAL WITH A FIREARM IN YOUR HANDS?

Any chance I had to actually discuss the FACTS with anyone from that site is now GONE. You have, whoever you are, done what Say Uncle intelligently advises against: You’ve “frightened the white people” (non-gun-owners), and given them more reason to consider us as Joe Huffman describes our current condition: “gun niggers” – people who they consider dangerous and “not like us” for whom it is OK to restrict our rights.

Thanks a lot.

I’ve left new comments of apology over at the site. I would not be surprised if they disappeared in short order. DO NOT “HELP” ME BY BEING JERKS.

Here’s one of the comments I left there, just in case she does decide to yank it:

Maggie wrote: “His blog contains a link to my posts on gun control on healthbeat, which explains why so many ideologues suddenly appeared out of the woodwork to drown out any possibility of rational discussion here–just as they had when Robert Feinman tried to raise the subject in an online diary.

“The NRA, and its supporters, are very well organized. One person who saw my post (a troll named Bob G) alerted Kevin, he in turn put a link on his blog to health beat, and suddenly we were overwhelmed with negative, nasty and personal comments. (They have removed –and will be in the future.)”

Maggie:

I’m sorry it happened, too. I certainly did not want it to, and I will write a post to that effect. However, while I will apologize for the behavior of those who came here and posted “negative, nasty, and personal comments” I cannot and will not take responsibility for them.

Again, I never made any suggestion that I was a “disinterested party.” Your blog attaches a hyperlink to my name which happens to go directly TO MY BLOG. My email address, which I assume you have access to since I must leave it in order to comment here, is “[email protected]” There was NO attempt made to pull the wool over anyone’s eyes.

The fact that you popped over to my site, saw the “McCain-FEINGOLD Insurrection” link and leaped to the mistaken conclusion that I’m a McCain supporter (and that somehow that dubious “fact” apparently disqualifies me in some way from being a reasonable person) says far more about you than it does about me.

Further, you had – PRIOR to my Friday evening post – already refused my THREE offers to discuss the topic of gun control – publicly or privately – because of your fear that “rational debate” would be drowned out by other voices. (How that would occur via a private email exchange is beyond me, but…)

I am FULLY aware of the acid and vitriol that the gun control debate stirs up. I am a veteran of the talk.politics.guns Usenet forum and a full six months and more than 1800 posts in the “gun dungeon” of DemocraticUnderground.com. I have been blogging on the topic for nearly five years now, and studying it for nearly thirteen. I know how hostile BOTH sides can be.

As one writer described it, gun owners have been the victims of a decades-long slow-motion hate crime. We’ve been described in the national media as red-necked, knuckle-dragging inbreds with one tooth and single-digit IQs. And those have been some of the KINDER things said. Media forces have SELF-ADMITTEDLY (I have the references) dropped any pretense of impartiality on the topic.

While “the NRA and its supporters” ARE very well organized, you might not understand that the organization you speak of truly is “grass roots.” We do this because it is IMPORTANT to us, and it isn’t the NRA telling us what to do and what to think. The NRA pretty much has to follow our lead.

Again, I really would like to discuss this topic with you either publicly or privately, and that invitation goes out to ANY interested party. No negative, nasty, or personal comments. No acid, no vitriol, just a calm discussion of the FACTS, the history, the law, the statistics, and the reasoning behind my position and yours. As I said before, I don’t expect to reverse anyone’s beliefs, but I DO expect to give you a perspective you haven’t previously been exposed to.

Again, my apologies for the trolls my post brought to your site. I should have expected it. But this is the internet, and we’re both grownups. If either of us are that affected by mere words, we shouldn’t be posting on the internet.

C’mon people. I thought we were better than that.

UPDATE: My comments were erased, but even more, sometime today (3/9) BOTH of her posts on gun control and all their comments were shoved down the memory hole.

“Reasoned Discourse” indeed. (h/t to Kevin P. for the heads-up.)

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