I Hate Unity and Manners Lectures, but...
by lombard, Thu May 08, 2008 at 11:04:02 AM EDT
...I have never done one before, so here is mine:
I just had my ability to read hidden comments reinstated. I suppose I had received too many troll ratings in the past but my detention time expired. May I just make a few suggestions?
1) Stop the fury and flury of troll and hide ratings. We are all adults, or mostly adults. If somebody pisses you off, let em have it. Tell them where to get off. Troll and hide ratings are lazy and cowardly ways of showing displeasure. They are also indicative of a netroots developed mob mentality. Besides, censorship is rarely a good thing and, on the netroots, it often reaches the point of Stalinism. Stalinism and group think are very, very, very, very, very bad for the long-term prospects of a party.
2) Stop telling people that they don't have the right to call themselves Democrats. None of us are qualified for that and no one should be. Democrats don't demand that Republicans take an oath of allegiance to the Democratic party in order to vote for the Democratic candidate in the general election. Telling Democrats that they must relinquish their Democratic preference and vote Republican from now on and join Red State if they choose not to vote for a Democratic nominee is no less foolish.
3) The primary is effectively over and there isn't much more than can be done about it. That is democracy. I didn't like the result of the 2004 GE but I had to live with it. That's what a true American does. Eventually, that cloud did turn out to have a silver lining. At this point, screaming that Obama did this or Clinton did that or this or that wasn't fair doesn't make much sense. What's done is done and we can't go back and replay the game.
That doesn't mean we have to all joing hands, hug, and sing the praises of each other. We can still be critical of these choices. We can still be critical of party direction and we can still be critical of those who oppose the perceived party direction. But, just try to be a little more subdued in the way you express it. We all just need to take a little extra effort to suppress rage, contempt, condescension, etc. and, in the process, argue in a way that is less hateful and ad hominem and more productive and compelling in the long run.
The bottom line: tolerance (at least a modicum of it). We don't have to agree. We don't have to stop arguing. We don't even have to swear allegiance. But, in the long run, we all have to tolerate our mutual existence.