Rules for comments: A reminder

I’ve had to delete a number of comments and I’ve been forced to ban some users lately. Therefore, it is appropriate to bring the rules back up to the top, as a reminder of what is and is not acceptable in the comments.

  • A reasonable level of civility is expected. While it is expected that controversial political and social issues may generate heated debate, there are common-sense limits of civility that will be enforced.

This is a wide open rule, and intentionally so. Here are a few examples of what is not permitted under this rule, though this is by no means a comprehensive list.

Open racism and anti-Semitism is not permitted under the “civility” rule. We live in an age where everything anyone says can be described as “racist,” so this is much more narrowly defined than in a lot of places. Do not use racial slurs, do not describe an entire race with derogatory terms, etc. This is not difficult to figure out.

Namecalling should be avoided. For example, calling me or anyone else a “faggot” is a good way to get your post deleted and get your account banned. Threats of violence will not be tolerated.

It is impossible to predict everything that is beyond the bounds of civility, and it is pointless to try to list everything. That said, most people are adults and are capable of understanding what is and is not civil. It should not be a surprise when an overtly uncivil post is deleted, whether I have explicitly prohibited that specific content or not.

  • This blog is a family-friendly site. Therefore no cursing, profanity, vulgarity, obscenity, etc. will be allowed. This is a zero-tolerance rule and will result in automatic deletion of the offending post.

This one is pretty self-explanatory.

  • Anonymity has greatly coarsened discourse on the Internet, so pseudonyms are discouraged but not forbidden. That said, any direct criticism of a person by name cannot be done anonymously. If you criticize someone, you have to subject yourself to the same level of scrutiny or the comment will be deleted.

This one is pretty self-explanatory.

  • Please keep your comments relevant to the topic of the post.

Please comment on the post itself instead of using the comments to bring up something unrelated to the post. For example: If I write about tax policy, please do not use it as an opportunity to post about abortion, traffic laws, or the war on drugs. Thank you for your cooperation.

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