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General Climbing Discussion

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Australia goes down the toilet!
3:22:08 PM
On 23/08/2010 egosan wrote:
>On 23/08/2010 simey wrote:
>>What is this dribble?
>Let's not start the retro-bolting debate here. It would be the mother
>of all internet forum storms.

Did someone mention Dribble?

There is nothing wrong with Phil putting forward his opinions, the only issue is the use of offensive words. I don't agree with the dribble but that is just me. I think the Mod' only has right to edit specific words if they are deemed highly offensive to an individual or group.

3:49:24 PM
On 23/08/2010 robertsonja wrote:
>I think the Mod' only has right to edit specific words
>if they are deemed highly offensive to an individual or group.

Just to be clear - the mods don't have rights, they have ultimate power. This isn't a democracy.... :-) We do what we think is in the best interests of the whole Chockstone community. It won't make everyone happy but we try our hardest.

3:53:18 PM
On 23/08/2010 gordoste wrote:
>I found Phil's and Duncan's posts equally offensive. In my opinion both
>posts should have been totally deleted (not just a couple of words removed).
>That sort of name-calling shouldn't be tolerated here. Either of their
>views should be tolerated as long as they are offered in a respectful manner.
>That's free speech.

The problem is Phil and Duncan posted during a weekend whilst mods were away. Thus by the time I saw the topic it was already up to 60+ posts and had been online for 24 hours. Deleting the original context would leave a chain of meaningless responses from lots of people that would look harsh if you didn't know the context. If I had seen this post immediately I wouldn't have hesitated to immediately delete it. Same goes for Duncans harsher posts.
4:05:21 PM
And as has been pointed out a number of times...the original post (for those who saw it) was the equivalent of calling a black person the N word.

I'm a little embarrased to be part of a community where some people want to defend this kind of thing.

Although, fortunately, those who have defended the post seem to be in the minority and (hopefully) they don't realise the offensiveness of the original post.

4:16:36 PM
On 23/08/2010 nmonteith wrote:
>Deleting the original context would leave a chain of meaningless responses

So why not delete the entire thread? A quick skim doesn't reveal much of value, and if the topic is felt to be important enough someone will start it back up, hopefully with a bit more civility.
4:24:46 PM
I thought I'd just throw this spanner in the works:

In 1948 the United Nations General Assembly adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR). Article 19 affirms the right to free speech:

Article 19. Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers.(1)

Members of the Commonwealth Parliament reaffirmed the principles of the Declaration during a sitting on 10 December 1998 to mark the 50th anniversary of the UDHR and pledged to give wholehearted support to the principles enshrined in the Declaration.(2)

Article 19 of the 1966 United Nations International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) states that:

Everyone shall have the right to freedom of expression ... (3)

Australia is a signatory to this treaty(4) and, in order to incorporate treaties and conventions into Australian law, governments must pass a specific Act of Parliament. Although some parts of the treaty have been implemented into law, such as the Human Rights Commission Act 1981,(5) no government has implemented the free speech provisions and therefore they are not enforceable by Australian courts.

Final sentence always comes to mind when this sort of 'debate' crops up.

4:27:25 PM
On 23/08/2010 pmonks wrote:
>So why not delete the entire thread? A quick skim doesn't reveal much
>of value, and if the topic is felt to be important enough someone will
>start it back up, hopefully with a bit more civility.

Because at already 60+ posts long people had invested in the topic and I didn't feel (at midnight) it would be appropriate to delete a lot of peoples opinions. That has certainly never been done before on Chockstone. We don't delete posts that are not offensive or spam. I know if it was me and my posts got deleted because they were lumped in with someone elses i'd be a bit pissed.

4:28:48 PM
I don't think this topic is going anywhere. I'm going to lock it and hope it shuffles to the bottom of the pile shortly.
4:32:31 PM
Some folk might not have found this thread worthwhile, but I think it has been a very interesting discussion for a number of reasons. We don't need over zealous censorship.

6:32:33 PM
I've been in contact with Phil and have agreed to a one hour re-opening of this topic as a right of reply. Once an hour is up I will re-lock this thread. So if you have something to say - say it now.
6:40:01 PM
On 23/08/2010 nmonteith wrote:
>I don't think this topic is going anywhere. I'm going to lock it and hope it shuffles to the bottom of the pile shortly.

Can you also lock M9 when his posts are going nowhere.

6:40:29 PM
Huh? What's the point of that? It's hardly as if all people with anything to say on the matter are going to log on in the next hour. Just leave the whole mess to follow its course with some admonishment to people to be civil and sensible through the process.

7:01:20 PM
I agree with Wendy. We're grown ups here !!

7:10:16 PM
This topic would have been deleted if I had seen it earlier. I'm keeping it open just for Phil to reply not everyone else. We have locked topics before and I'm sure it will happen again.

Phil Box
7:12:55 PM
I asked Neil to open the thread up so I could have a right of reply at all the posts directed at me. I've spent a bit of time away from chocky on one of the Australian Political forums and had gotten used to a bit of argey bargey rough and tumble political arguing. Those places are rough I can tell you. Being that this is a political thread and in the heat of the moment I let fly on a subject that it seems is very delicate here and have offended a lot of the users sensibilities.

I do apologise whole heartedly and without reservation for the offensive words I used to describe gays, that was uncalled for. I can definitely see that that would offend. I do not however apologise for holding a particular view on gay marriage per se. If that offends people then I am sorry for you that you cannot allow someone to hold a particular view that is opposed to yours.

I thought that we could discuss difficult subjects in a mature manner and in a civil way.

Feel free to lock the thread or not Neil as you see fit.
7:20:22 PM
This has in many ways been a bizarre thread.

I struggle to see that edited or otherwise, people can't see the problems with the contentious post. It doesn't take much imagination to fill in the gaps and realise that it is hardly intended to say anything nice. Generic terms intended to abuse a group of people are still as offensive as abuse directed at individuals. There are many ways to express a disagreement with gay marriage other than with such language, phrasing and inference. The actual content is so outrageous and lacking in reasoned argument it's impossible to take seriously.

So Phil says he's trying to stimulate debate. I think we have seen the limits of playing devil's advocate and black humour here. I'm all for black humour and being contentious, but the potential for this piece to offend people, and to hurt people in personal areas such as relationships and families makes it well out of order, and it failed abysmally to be clever, insightful or funny.

However, we also are seeing a bunch of debate about free speech. Sure, free speech is necessary. However, it is a right that comes with responsibility. Free speech starts to contravene other rights when it is abusive. Thus if Phil reworded his post to say simply he did not believe gay people were able to raise children and offered some rationale why, I would still disagree but he'd be exercising his right to express an opinion in a responsible manner. The tone of responses would also be different and if people did direct personal abuse, he'd have a high horse to stand on. And starting with calling JG a communist - what a way to gain credibility and inspire rational debate! But I don't think it does anyone any credit to respond by calling him a sht and red neck. I also suspect there are shts and rednecks who'd be offended to be associated with such views.

7:21:42 PM
On 23/08/2010 Phil Box wrote:

I thought that we could discuss difficult subjects in a mature manner and in a civil way.

Many of us can, Phil, but that's not how you entered this discussion. The content is up to you, but the manner of your input did you no service and was the cause of what followed it.
7:25:22 PM
On 22/08/2010 nmonteith wrote:
>and my 2cents... I work on Oxford Street, and my boss and several other
>work mates are gay. I have good friends (male and female) who are also
>gay. In this day and age I believed that someones sexual orientation is
>just not an issue anymore. Certainly in my industry (film&tv) no ones bats
>an eyelid. I fail to see how someones sexual orientation effects you Phil?
>Whats that all about? My boss has two wonderful kids (actually they are
>now young adults). I've worked with both of them over the years and they
>are about the most clever, well adjusted people I know. I obviously live
>in a bubble because where I come from everyone gets along just fine. In
>all my years on earth I have never heard such vile direct stuff put in
>the public eye so directly - and especially in front of people who are
>your friends. How you considered that several climbers that you have met
>were probably gay? 10% of the population means statistically speaking its
>probably happened many times! Imagine what they think of you now? I'm just
>disappointed that in this day and age this is still an issue in modern
>Australia. It truly makes me sad. This is not about politics - it's just
>about prejudice and ignorance.

Really well said.

Very few people these days use terms like "nigger", "spick", "kike", "coon", and similar perjoratives - but "fag" is somehow acceptable?

There's a difference between expressing a strong opinion, and using offensive, demeaning and pejorative terms to express that opinion. The word "fag" is highly offensive - and deliberately so, by the people who use it. It expresses sentiments that are way beyond a legitimate statement of different opinions. It's clearly meant to say, "those people are so different to you and me, that we don't have to think of them as actual people".

In my experience, the Phils of this world are seldom challenged about their language. When they are, they often respond with indignation and amazement. But I must say, I've seldom seen such a bizarre response as his ludicrous suggestion to "please be civil and dare I say, tolerant of other peoples views".

Sure Phil. You just remind all those "fags", "niggers", "spicks", "kikes" and "coons" to be "civil" while they discuss things with you.

Just my (faggy) 2 cents.

7:59:01 PM
Thanks everyone. This topic is now closed. If you want to start another then feel free. Just keep it civil.

8:10:17 PM
I'm new to the forum and have read with interest the heated debate sparked by Phil's post. Whilst not being homophobic or having any issues with whether a gay couple could raise a child in a loving family environment, the point which seem to have been missed is that the definition of 'marriage' is essentailly a union between a male and a female. I haven't been able to find one which says otherwise. Why should the ceremony of 'marriage' therefore be extended to couples who will never be able to fit this definition? Does it really make a difference to the level of commitment betwen partners in a gay relationship whether they have a title of 'married' associated with that partnership? I wouldn't have thought so! What about a 'committed union' ceremony, or something similar that could imply that a same-sex relationship is committing to a life-log partnership of deeper love and commitment?

Now having the same legal rights as a 'married' couple (male/female) is a different issue altogether and on that I feel needs to be addressed so that there is no discrimation between heterosexual and same sex couples. The two issues should not be confused, which is what I think is the real issue...not of allowing same-sex marriages to be legalised, but in fact allowing same-sex couples the same legal rights as 'married' heterosexual couples. Please fee free to comment if I've missed something here or is this really the crux of the matter (pardon the climbing pun)?

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