So who is truly tougher?

Subject: So who is truly tougher?
From: Heli Roosild <HeliR -at- MSMAILHQ -dot- NETIMAGE -dot- COM>
Date: Wed, 13 Jul 1994 13:37:00 PDT

I am amazed--truly amazed!--at postings that defend flames and blame the
thin skins of those who are offended. How can these otherwise intelligent
people be so apparently clueless about the common denominator between an
email flame and the punch in the jaw or slash of the knife of, say, a wife-
or child-abuser.

In both cases, the perpetrator has "lost it." In both cases, the perpetrator
indulges in an infantile, emotional response to inflict violence against a
fellow human being. In both cases, the perpetrator justifies the action by
blaming the victim. Unfortunately, like the facelessness of a mob, the
anonymity of the Internet lets us express our worst feelings without
suffering the consequences normally exacted by a civilized society.

No doubt I will be excoriated for equating verbal and physical abuse. But
violence is violence. Think the thought, speak the word, and you will
eventually do the deed.

As Gwen Gall's story shows (thank you, Gwen!), even speaking the word can
have terrible consequences. I repeat it here, in case you missed it:

>The GIS-L list had an incredible occurrence recently, where the flamed
>tearfully apologized and stated that his job was actually on the line at
>company, because his defence of his product was used as a personal attack
>against him.

So I ask you, who is truly tougher? The one who lets it all hang out and
damn the consequences to anyone else? Or the one who lets a provocation pass
without comment or with a soft answer?

Here endeth my harangue.

helir -at- msmailhq -dot- netimage -dot- com
"Let there be peace on earth, and let it begin with me...."

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