PERNICIOUS-L (may be re-post)
Craig Bond (CraigB1051@AOL.COM)
Tue, 30 May 1995 14:08:16 -0400
(No response from reflector and this was not in today's digest, so not
certain if this went out; apologies if this is the second out.)
Regarding "Glasnost", "BSA Bashing", etc.
Ken's arguments (in the unfortunately named "Glasnost" posting),
are beautifully crafted and strike right to the heart of Freedom of
Speech. I believe, however, that Ken has also missed the actual
issue by turning his back on it.
Ken, we were all shut out of Scouts-L for awhile as Jon Eidson has
If the response to your postings at rec.scouting did indeed result
in flames and hate mail, then your apparent paranoia may well be
justified. In this case, however, it is simply wrong.
The issue to which Jon may have been asked to respond, I believe,
is not *what* you've been saying but *how* you've been expressing
it. Jon's apparently private post to you was intended to offer you
an opportunity to consider this issue.
I believe you've knowingly chosen to express your opinions in the
most injurious sort of way.
--> course I understand that, since American Scouts and
--> leaders can't be trusted with one another, public
--> displays and impersonal games like who can collect the
--> most awards and "advance" the farthest must become much
--> more significant.
Now, the issue of uniforms and what is displayed on them can, if we
choose, be one that divides our scout associations, or it can be
one that simply differentiates between us. There are some in the
USA who believe that patch collecting and displays on uniforms are
taken to too great an extreme (see Carey Probst's post in today's
digest, as an example). State your distaste for our habits all you
wish; there will be many here who'll join you.
Tying that with our Youth Protection Guidelines program and stated
as you did, however, is a breach of etiquette that seems intended
to be hurtful and possibly to set traps that will draw a nasty
response to which you can respond with that beautiful "Freedom of
Speech" post. The two matters have nothing in common and you know
This is not to say that differences of opinion are not welcome
here. They are and we have had many differences, sometimes
resulting in a decision to honor our differences as making us
unique. I've participated in some of these "debates", including
responding with some heat to what I've seen as unjustified attacks
on "paid BSA staff" as a whole.
The issue, then, seems to be that you are intending to draw angry
reactions and are now upset that you've been successful. You
appear, in short, determined to be a flame-thrower.
If that is not the case, Ken, then why do you post the way you do?
If it is unintentional, this should serve as notice that your
postings are received very poorly, at least in this area of this
side of the Atlantic. It may be that you view our "debates" as too
tame, intellectually impoverished. I suggest that it is a matter
of etiquette, or netiquette, that asks us to frame our debates with
courtesy and caution since we are not in face-to-face contact with
either our fellow debaters or our audience.
Your post today demonstrates that you have the intellectual
capacity to distinguish what I'm saying here, and I sincerely hope
you will take heed to these words. You must understand the
difference between intelligent discourse on differences of opinion
and intentional baiting of the waters.
And if you did not take heed to these words and if you continued to
post with the intention of drawing angry reaction, then Jon Eidson
is fully justified in following the lead of the good folks at
rec.scouting and simply denying you access to this list while still
allowing you freedom to express irksome and pernicious opinions in
private or in such other media as you be able to access.
Freedom of Speech, it must be noted, is not the same as a
guaranteed audience nor a guaranteed vehicle of speech. Freedom of
the press is guaranteed only to those with a press.
The cyberspace equivalent is: if you wish to start a list
exclusively for flame-throwers, get thee to a listserver and start
FLAMES-L, IRKSOME-L, or PERNICIOUS-L. And curst be he who first
This is a private list and as the listowner, Jon has accepted the
responsibility to keep the list free of intentional baiting and
senseless, hurtful, jibes. If he did not, the list would quickly
degenerate to a series of irksome and pernicious flames which few
of us wish to waste our time reading, thus making the purpose of
this list entirely moot. And if the job becomes too burdensome, he
would be justified in simply shutting down the list completely --
a consummation I, for one, devoutly wish to avoid. I went through
sufficient withdrawal during the recent difficulty.
Mandeville, Louisiana, USA
Istrouma Area Council
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City