“Oh, the civility!” is of course the catchcry of pearlclutchers everywhere, especially on that subset of socially-conservative blogs where a bit of cussing is viewed as inherently and self-evidently an order of magnitude more offensive than calling someone a pervert or a traitor.
Here’s a couple of comments from another blog which point out just how much this “civility” standard is rank hypocrisy, which cuts right to the heart of our Civility Guidelines here at Hoyden About Town.
Consider 2 pieces of writing:
1. A lengthy screed written by lawyers and statisticians explaining, with numerous polysyllabic phrases and data extrapolations galore, the benefits that would accrue to the national discourse, the economy, and morality in general should the polity choose to put all of the citizenry who happen to be of Jewish extraction into cleansing facilities (which, it is explained in a technical footnote, will contain only the most humane and sanitary of gas chambers and crematoria)
2. A short flyer posted on lamposts telling the Nazi Punks to F**K Off.
Which set of writers would you prefer to dine with?
Neil the Ethical Werewolf:
When people on the right complain about political correctness, I’m reminded how happy I am about the trade we’ve made over the last few decades – it’s more acceptable to use naughty sexual expressions, and less acceptable to use bigoted terms for women and minorities. Which is great, because it’s more fun and better for society to talk about sex (and to cuss) than it is to say bigoted things about women and minorities.
These comments both came from the discussion of a post from Amanda on Pandagon – Today’s rule is that if you’re liberal and have sneezed in the past 24 hours, you don’t get to talk – about the current Gotcha game being played by the wingnut base, which is, to no-one’s great surprise here I’m sure, based on a pearl-clutching double standard.
Bill O’Reilly and Michelle Malkin are leading their bleaters in a charge against JetBlue, an announced sponsor of the YearlyKos convention, deluging them with threats of boycott unless they withdraw their sponsorship of the convention. Their extremely thin line of justification? That some commentors on DailyKos “drop the F-bomb” (gasp!) every now and then, which apparently makes DailyKos a hate site (doublegasp!).
Glenn Greenwald sighs wearily, notes that John Aravosis easily found comments inciting actual violence in the comments at Bill O’Reilly’s site, and without surprise finds commentors on Michelle Malkin’s site openly advocating violence and segregation against Muslims and Democrats and even the arrest and asset-confiscation of elected Democratic politicians. Sounds like a hate site to me, but I would be wrong, apparently. It’s all totally apple-pie OK, because Malkin has thought of that in her little line above her comment input-field:
Please don’t assume that I agree with or endorse any particular comment just because I let it stand.
See, I understand that entirely. Part of the point of writing a blog is to generate lively discussion, and what makes discussion lively is differences of opinion and contrasting points of view – how could any sane person agree with or endorse every comment in a heated 200+ comments discussion?
But that’s exactly the standard to which Malkin and O’Reillly are holding DailyKos. One standard for me and another for thee, because I say so.
Amanda’s post skewers their mentality where point-scoring is the be-all and end-all, because politics is just a game to them that’s all about their homeboys gaining office for TEH WIN, and where lives like those lost and ruined on all sides in Dick and George’s Great Iraq Adventure don’t count in the game metrics – because they’re not our kind of people, the people who do count, silly.
Now that’s offensive.