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Author Topic: arguing about arguing  (Read 2535 times)

kyfornow

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arguing about arguing
« on: November 17, 2009, 03:02:43 pm »

My best closest and oldest friend in the whole world is a Christian, a preacher, a chaplain at the local city mission, and I ... am the opposite of those things.  The biggest problem I am having with him, more and more as time progresses, is his over the top approach to religion.  I don't mind him having his belief system, but I finally told him I was tired of him targeting me and preaching to me, and I wasn't going to tolerate it any more if we were to remain friends.  Some of our other friends have even mentioned to him on occasion that while he has the right intention, he is more likely to dissuade people from considering his belief system, because he is overly assertive, often coming off as rude and inconsiderate of others.  My observation is that he has little idea on how to comprimise.

Now you might ask, "Nice story, so what's your point."  I will proceed to relate said point.

In terms of how this anecdote relates to to liberty activity, I am seeing several areas of disfunction just from reading these forums.

First I see more than a few people who are either incapable or unwilling of giving appropriate and constructive criticism.  Secondly I see more than a few people who are incapable or unwilling of receiving appropriate and constructive criticism.  Third, I see people more worried about what other people are doing instead of what they are doing.  Finally I see people who are either unable or unwilling to comprimise.

1) There is a difference between giving feedback and arbitrarily attacking someone.  This means you don't rant and rave, or yell curse to get your point across.  If you have LEGITIMATELY attempted to give someone advice, feedback, etc and they do not take it, which is their choice, then you can choose to just move on to a different subject or just avoid that person all together. Unless that person is causing actual physical harm to someone or their property, then all you do is create negativity in your own mood and for others around you, if you continue to bring the subject up in mixed company, or preach to the person every time you see them. 

2) I know more than my fair share of people who cannot seem to take LEGITIMATE feedback from others.  That means, feedback that did not include ranting and raving, or personal attacks and has evidence to support it.  It doesn't mean you have to agree with it or accept it as being correct but you can be mature and appropriate and acknowledge the person's point of view and politely disagree.  EXAMPLE (I appreciate your input but I disagree.)  If the person then wants to lure you into an arguement, then they are no longer being legitimate, and if you participate in the arguement you are as equally guilty as they are. 

Two weeks ago I had a very intense arguement with my christian friend.  Because I had quit arguing with him over the last several years (because I got tired of the drama of the religion arguement) I learned from others that he intepreted this as "BJ is coming around to Jesus, that's why he doesn't rebuttal any more."

So I told him I wasn't going to just let his preaching and comments be disregarded any more, that if he kept on, I was going to rebuttal him.  Since 2 weeks ago and another arguement with him, I had to accept that I was equally at fault, even though by his preaching I can say "He started it so I'm going to finish it."  But I mean, come on, that's really childish and immature.  So my decision now is next time I see him, which will be Thursday night, the first mention he makes of religion, I am just going to say, "Well, it's time for me to go." 

There are some things that I see people are doing that are either ineffective or even harmful to the liberty movement.  I would be glad to discuss those in a further post or with individuals. I am the type of person that is a planner and evaluator so I consider myself a fair judge of things, but then that's my opinion. 

3) Anyway moving on, number three is somewhat related to number 1.  I see people wasting a lot of time and resources trying to lure others into an arguement or create drama.  From what I have read on these boards, there are people of all types, from various parts of NH and other states as well, who are guilty of this. 

Now me personally, I am the type who isn't the nonchalant type.  I prefer to be in the middle of things.  There's nothing wrong with focusing your energy on writing letters, talking to people casually, and the like, but it just isn't me.  I don't like to sit and I'm not a quiet person.  When I was in high school, I was constantly at battle with teachers and the principal over things that I felt were violating my rights.  Examples include refusing to stand for the pledge of allegiance, refusing to attend the christmas play that occured during school time, and choosing writing and research topics that allowed me to point out personal and professional flaws of the teacher who assigned them.  Sometimes my approaches weren't the most tactfully effective, though as a teenager I didn't have the sense to realize it.  Anyway my point is, I am a get out there kind of guy. 

But with that being said, even though I prefer more visible tactics, I don't have a problem with people who write letters or whatever else.  If your objective is to reduce the size and scope of government then we're on the same team.  If you are capable of giving and receiving appropriate feedback, then we're on the same team.

4) The issue I have with comprimise is this- I'm not saying you have to comprimise your moral aptitude.  But what I am saying is, you have to be willing to be aware of how others perceive you and your actions.  If I am perceiving some infighting, drama, and egotism, then I know there have to be others (and probably MANY others) who also perceive it.  Now for myself, I am still willing to make a trip in the near future to get a look at things first hand.  But for others who are on the fence, and debating their posture on whether to consider being involved in NH, it could and probably already has in many cases, caused people to lean more toward keeping their house and job and current situation where they are.

Also people need to consider the perception of their neighbors in NH who are not active in the liberty movement or who may even disagree with it.  One of the FAQ on this site states,

 "Even when the FSP’s ambitious target of 20,000 participants have all moved to NH, they will form only 5% of the NH voting population. They can make as much noise as they want, but, at the end of the day, it is the NH voters who will make the decisions." 

So that means if the overall perception of NH's voting population is that the liberty movement is causing harm, even if that harm was only caused by a select few, then they have the ability to utilize the tool of government to overpower freedom lovers by outvoting them. Many people who are in favor of the state and of govermnent, may sit back and let the
 freedom movement "take over" New Hampshire because they don't get involved and vote or pay attention.  In the same way that government takes more control and freedoms, liberty activists can reverse the trend, because most people don't care what happens as long as they have their car, house and 200 channels of tv.  But if you piss them off enough, even if it is the work of a few individuals, then enough of them are going to rise up against the free state, and purposely contradict liberty lovers. 

Hopefully what I wrote here will cause some people to maturely and appropriately reflect on their choice of words toward others, and their own actions.  Just like I was doing with my religious friend, you may be just as much to blame as the people you are accusing of wrong doing, or not taking logical steps to avoid the conflict, even if it means you have to avoid the person all together.  I'm just going to keep doing what I'm doing, and you should too. 

BJ
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rossby

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Re: arguing about arguing
« Reply #1 on: November 17, 2009, 03:11:06 pm »

When are you moving?
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kyfornow

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Re: arguing about arguing
« Reply #2 on: November 17, 2009, 03:27:42 pm »

Well it's not a moving plan, so much as a trip to put a visual to what I'm reading on forums, or watching on videos.  This is to scout out potential work, areas to live, and stuff that I can to some extent only do theoretically, by being at a distance.  It is going to depend on when I have the funds to fly to NH and take a look around.  If the move occurs it will be within the next 6-8 months, 12 months at the very latest, but the initial visit will be  as soon as I have the extra money to get there and can get the days off from work (at least 2 but preferrably 3)   I figure from here it will take about an hour and half to fly to NH. 
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rossby

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Re: arguing about arguing
« Reply #3 on: November 17, 2009, 03:31:35 pm »

Sorry, I didn't mean that trip specifically. When would you like to move?
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kyfornow

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Re: arguing about arguing
« Reply #4 on: November 17, 2009, 03:39:52 pm »

Well I'd like to be there next week :P  But I've got to have time time to sell things I need to get rid of, furniture, farm, mobile home, pay off a few bills, and save money to make the move so I'd like to say 4-6 months but it may end up more like 8-12. 
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JasonPSorens

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Re: arguing about arguing
« Reply #5 on: November 17, 2009, 03:42:44 pm »

I think BD has a mancrush on someone...  ;D
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"Educate your children, educate yourselves, in the love for the freedom of others, for only in this way will your own freedom not be a gratuitous gift from fate. You will be aware of its worth and will have the courage to defend it." --Joaquim Nabuco (1883), Abolitionism

rossby

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Re: arguing about arguing
« Reply #6 on: November 17, 2009, 03:47:09 pm »

I think BD has a mancrush on someone...  ;D

Don't you have young minds to be molding?!
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RichW

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Re: arguing about arguing
« Reply #7 on: November 17, 2009, 05:52:14 pm »

BJ, you make some valid points.  The people who are "guilty" of this "disfunctional" behavior are a very small minority of the FSP membership.  Unfortunately, they make up a much larger proportion of the posters on this forum.  That is a problem because this site is the public "face" of the FSP.  I will think about the matter.  Hopefully, others will too.
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"... it does not require a majority to prevail, but rather an irate, tireless minority keen to set brush fires in people's minds...."  ~  Samuel Adams

maxxoccupancy

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Re: arguing about arguing
« Reply #8 on: November 18, 2009, 12:01:42 am »

Are we arguing about arguing about arguing now?

If not, I say that it's time to start.
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Floridian

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Re: arguing about arguing
« Reply #9 on: November 18, 2009, 06:37:56 am »

For a lot of people it is more fun to argue on the internets than in real life.  An observation based on what goes on here may have practically no bearing on reality. 
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John Edward Mercier

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Re: arguing about arguing
« Reply #10 on: November 18, 2009, 07:41:02 am »

It does in some way. To really achieve liberty take not only ideas, but consensus. It might not be 100%, but the closer the better.

And I think some of it may be that even natives seldom have knowledge of the mechanisms of the current model of government.
They either believe that parts of it are static, or have no real idea how it functions.
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