Monday, July 04, 2005

How Should We Discuss?

In starting a new blog, I am aware of the craziness in other comment sections (and posts) I have read. As a Christian writer, I realize that I have no particular philosophical basis to talk to non-Christians about the tone of their comments - except the natural law espoused by the likes of C.S. Lewis. So be it. Since I plan to approach almost all subjects from a Christian and/or scriptural viewpoint - I have no reason to expect non-Christians to agree with many of my positions - and certainly none of the authority standing behind it. So be that too.

I called this blog "Brain Cramps for God" because early on I will be approaching subjects I am struggling with. I will also be approaching questions society is struggling with. I personally am trying to find solutions. This runs counter to
Leiter Reports. I would then ask why people then comment and engage in discussion? Obviously, at first to state their opinion or their questions. If they disagree, are they looking for understanding, compromise, to be educated, or to teach? Or do they just wish to argue and bash the enemy? Certainly I wish people here who want discourse - who wish to bring light, and not heat, to a topic. I will not get it, but I can want it ["Can't we all just get along?": No, but we can be civil while we figure out why not].

Tyler over at
Habakkuk's Watchpost approaches the same subject; and CQD did too. However, in both cases we have to come to a reasoned argument about what separates Christians after some initial hyperbole (if not outright demagoguery).

There are many times Jesus called folks "vipers" without being kind; and trashed tables in the temple a couple of times - all in defending God from hypocrisy and sacrilege. He was God - He can do that easier than us.

In the interests of discussing how we should discuss:
The Moral Case for Manners by J. Budziszewski


  1. Interesting how, in a post about good manners, the author to whom you linked writes

    ...feminists now make it worse by defining men as predators

    That's so wrong. If he had written "A few feminists now make it worse..." he might have been right. As the sentence stands, Budziszewski is guilty of hyperbole (if not outright demagoguery).

  2. Agreed, now what about the rest of what is said.


How to debate charitably (rules are links to more description of rule):
1. The Golden Rule
2. You cannot read minds
3. People are not evil
4. Debates are not for winning
5. You make mistakes
6. Not everyone cares as much as you
7. Engaging is hard work
8. Differences can be subtle
9. Give up quietly