Monday, August 31, 2009

Doggerel #197: "Unprofessional/Immature"

Welcome back to "Doggerel," where I ramble on about words and phrases that are misused, abused, or just plain meaningless.

Welcome to the internet. Lots of people out there say unkind things. That's reality. Yes, it'd be nice if people could remain in a calm tone, but we are emotional beings. Some of us have to rage in the face of apathy and cynicism. Some of us have to laugh at absurdities to avoid crying. Debates as open as those on these blogs are not for the thin-skinned. And neither is science.

That's why this doggerel falls so flat with me. A person's manner and tone are irrelevant to the arguments they present. If their premises are true, and their logic valid, it doesn't matter if they're making silly faces at you. That's the bottom line. If you can't toughen up and illustrate your argument or present evidence, don't blame the actions of others for your decision to post stalling comments about this irrelevance.

Annoyingly, though also irrelevant, I tend to see this doggerel coming from all sorts of vicious characters who demonstrate little or no awareness of their actions. I have seen, for example, all sorts of fundies who know nothing about us claiming in their opening comment that we're depraved, nihilistic beasts only worthy of being pointlessly tortured for all eternity, and then act shocked when someone addresses them with a mild expletive. So really, if you want to see a mature discussion, keep an eye on your own maturity.


Don said...

God, I hate all of these style over substance doggerels. It's these that led to the creation of my Proper Victorian Gentlemen, because this kind of "Those skeptics are mean" or "Those skeptics are immature" both leading to "therefore they're not real skeptics, just pseudoskeptics" that has been driving me crazy.

It's the new party line of the Alex Tsakiris woo crowd: conflate the tenor of debate with its content and accuse anyone who doesn't meet your standards of "maturity" as being a dogmatic, closed-minded "pseudoskeptic." This meme is to the modern "sophisticated" woo what TAG was to "sophisticated" fundies about 6 months ago: it arose quickly and spread and now they're all masturbating furiously over it as if it actually means something.

James K said...

Serious arguments should be taken seriously, but one should feel free to take ridiculous arguments ridiculously.

Besides which, professionalism only matters when you're doing something professionally.

Dweller in Darkness said...

I'm a Christian and *dodges fruit* I have to say that the level of invective from our side of the aisle is atrocious. I'd apologize on behalf of my fellow believers, but it would be insincere, so I'll just apologize if I ever fall victim to this doggerel.

For the record, incidentally, I don't think the universe is 6000 years old and if God had a direct hand in creation it was a very, very long time ago - what's the point in a God who's omniscient and omnipotent if the best systems He can make require constant maintenance?

Bronze Dog said...

Well, be sure to berate the next fundie troll to come around. I'd definitely love to see a savage fundie get grilled by a civilized Christian for their hypocrisy.

Dweller in Darkness said...

*straps on +2 Boots of Holy Shitkicking*

I've never understood how someone can read David's Psalms and then think that God wants us to ignore the information given to use by creation. It just doesn't compute.

Anonymous said...

I think you mean 'expletive' rather than 'explicative'

Bronze Dog said...

Fixenatized. Thank you.