To those just dying to know "which side I am on", I have voted for Democrats, Republicans, and Independents in my day whom I felt best reflected my values and concerns. Or more accurately, the lesser of evils I am presented with. Yeah, go right on ahead and color me jade. But please do not paint me any other colors.
Friendships with real people are of far greater value to me than whatever masturbatory feel good strokes may be had from being a tool for the "winning side" of various public serpents who only pretend to give a damn about us once every X years. I've lost friends to real tragedies. Losing more over senseless political machinations is infantile. And it is past time for it to end.
We, the people, need to take back responsibility for intelligent, fact and logic based discussion and debate of a myriad list of issues facing society which we have for far too long now abdicated to various talking heads serving up our preferred flavors of identity politics. The modern web has deteriorated to a little more than inflammatory click bait catering to the lowest denominator. Indeed, we seem to have lost our capacities to engage in little else! Some would like to blame the social networking sites. Yet others point fingers at the plethora of shock jock charlatans masquerading as news media. That would be wrong as we have nobody to blame other than ourselves. Commercial entities care about one thing: Profit! The math is simple: More clicks equals more money and rising stock prices. Everything else is merely strategy and tactics. The "war for eyeballs" has become ruthlessly proficient at serving up our just deserts.
I hope to provide a space here for civil, reasoned discussion of topical social issues. To which end I up voted posts and topics which I felt could be good candidates for such without regard for "identity politics" of their respective posters. I also made a couple posts and a few comments in efforts to encourage such. Again, taking care to not give the appearance of taking sides. Ironically, efforts at neutrality back fired and peeved folks on both sides of the chasm. Alas, I failed the onsight lead. But I'm tenacious and not done yet.
One of the crux's presented by this category was it's title. I am not interested in Blue versus Red versus the remaining colors of the rainbow. The circus acts on display in modern political arenas are counter productive to these goals.
I have therefore decided to rename this category "Big Questions". Hopefully such helps otherwise intelligent folks to step back from personality politics and focus on issues.
There has also been interest for a space to discuss philosophy. I have been pondering how best to accommodate this without too much splitting and subdividing. Broadening this category to "Big Questions" hopefully allows us to have our cake and eat it too.
And... since this space is likely to become a bit heated from time to time, a few things bear repeating:
Quantity does not equate to quality. Drowning "opponents" with barrages of senseless babble, ad hominem attacks, slurs, etc. does not equate to "winning". If anything, it only serves to shine the spotlight on the losers. To phrase in climbing terms, I think most will agree that bypassing all the crux moves cheats the route. Hosers, posers and sprayers are little more than "legends in their own mind". While such may have served up some momentary amusement around the campfire, uhhh... here's the clue bat, it's because we were laughing at you.
Differences in opinion are welcome. Trolling is not. Nor is it an excuse to take the bait. Two wrongs do not make a right. Like a fish unable to resist a tempting lure, it's a lot harder to shake the hook than avoid it in the first place. Yes, it's a challenge, particularly when the bait hits close to that which we may hold dear. But instead of rushing to the lure, maybe take a few steps back first and rethink your reaction.
We are all guilty of bad calls from time to time. Part of the human condition. A wise man once said; "Let he who is without sin cast the first stone.". Let's drop the hate, forgive each other. Worth bearing in mind.
Note: This is not an invitation to discuss religion. Although values derived from such are fair game in debate formats such as Lincoln-Douglas religions themselves are a matter of faith and outside the realm of debate.