The gift my weirdo debate friends gave me

gavel

Tonight is the summer alumni debate of my philosophical debating group, and I’ve had an awkward time every time someone has asked me what we’re planning to debate. You see, our topic for the night is “R: Heighten the Contradictions,” which tends to throw people for a loop if they were expecting “R: Elect Obama” “R: Repeal the Death Penalty” or something like that.By the end of rationality camp, one of the things that stuck with me was how grateful I am to have been part of this debating circl … [Read more...]

Offering Loving Resistance [Sequence Index]

In July 2012, Patheos sent me a copy of Logan Mehl-Laituri's memoir Reborn on the Fourth of July: The Challenge of Faith, Patriotism & Conscience to review, and thus was sparked a wide- ranging (unusually book-heavy, even for me) discussion of just war, martyrdom, the courage of enemies, and whether Hamlet is the worst person in Hamlet.  I've collected all those loosely linked posts here.Can Lethal Resistance be Loving? - The initial book review, discussing Laituri's decision to become a … [Read more...]

7 Quick Takes (8/10/12)

--- 1 ---Just a housekeeping reminder: This coming week, I'll be talking about Company for our Sondheim watch-along party and having some guest posts/featured comments/etc.  So check it out on Netflix and let me know if you'd like to link up. --- 2 --- Last week's links were all Olympic-themed, and I've got one more to add in that vein: Flowing Data has links to all of the NYT's best visualizations of track and field history at the Olympics.  One of my favorites: looking at the fasted recor … [Read more...]

A reading from Henry VI, Part 2 4:2:73

Yes, in context, the line has the opposite sentiment to most of the people quoting it.Yvain asked, in good faith, a detailed question about Natural Law theology, but his comment is buried in the wilds of the comment policy discussion, where tempers are rising.  So I want to pull it out and give it its own thread, and also take the opportunity to do some of the wacky experimental comment moderation I was talking about yesterday.  Here's how it's going to go down:Only make a top-level … [Read more...]

Finding the right amount of unpleasantness

There's some very helpful feedback on the recent commenting/housekeeping/debate tactics post.  I'm going to highlight and briefly respond to a few people, and then hopefully we can get back to content-y posts to practice constructively commenting on!Emily wrote: I’m really wrestling with at what point I need to walk away from even reading comments here. The tone and mix of commenters has really changed a lot recently, and frankly, I think Adam’s right. I’m glad you’re writing in a measured a … [Read more...]

Clawing out of the Cesspool

princess bride quicksand

Thanks all for the mostly good behavior on the two preceding posts on queer issues.  I know I've got a fairly diverse audience, and it can be hard to negotiate different frames of reference without misinterpreting or even just taking offense at the wrong thing (and thereby missing the insult your sparring partner spent a while crafting!).After looking at comment thread in the last post, Adam Lee was pretty put off by what he termed the "cesspool of anti-gay hate" that bubbled up.  I can g … [Read more...]

What would someone have to say to you to get you to break up your family?

freaky friday

For your own good at that.This isn't a hypothetical question.  There are plenty of examples where we think this kind of intervention is acceptable or even necessary.  In decreasing order of urgency: an abusive spouse, two people who bring out the worst in each other, a couple that's stayed together out of inertia, the person you're with at the beginning of a romantic comedy, etc.But no matter how urgent the need for this conversation, most of us would recognize that this is a really trick … [Read more...]


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