Friday, August 22, 2008

Hi Pot, Did You Know I'm Rod?

Rod Dreher, over on the DMN's opinion blog, tells readers how to not get banned, but then doesn't allow comments on the post. Among the things Dreher says is this: 1. "Make your points without nasty personal attacks on others who post here." 2. "We're all in favor of robust debate, and tolerating points of view we may find objectionable. But it's impossible to maintain a civil forum if people are going to insult and degrade the bloggers or other commenters." I do agree that nasty personal attacks on blogs are bad. But they're also generally done by people who want to quash a debate without having to win it, usually because they know they're wrong, or there's a possibility (usually because they don't have all the facts) that they could be wrong. Which is why I take issue with what Dreher says, because apparently commenters can get banned for personal attacks, but columnists cannot. Just this week, Dreher made a personal attack on someone, which begs the question: Can a blogger get banned for the same thing? Because I think calling someone a termagant and snotty is a personal attack, especially when that person is, when you parse it all down, a volunteer with DISD with no authority and is not a public figure, as is denigrating her years of volunteerism with accusations that are not true.