Re: So who is truly tougher?

Subject: Re: So who is truly tougher?
From: Don Reese <wedge -at- UNM -dot- EDU>
Date: Thu, 14 Jul 1994 16:47:39 -0600

On Thu, 14 Jul 1994 mpriestley -at- VNET -dot- IBM -dot- COM wrote:

> I wrote:
> >> I see your ideas leading directly to mind control, the devaluation of
> >> the individual, and the erosion of rights and freedoms. And so, instead of
> >> shrugging it off, I write through my lunch break to express my

> and Don Reese replied:
> >When did gentle reproach become mind control? Miss Manners is a fascist,
> >I guess...

> However, I don't think verbal violence is equivalent to physical violence,
> and I don't think that thinking thoughts or saying words is tantamount
> to beating a wife or child. I agree that verbal violence can be extremely
> damaging, as part of an ongoing campaign of total emotional abuse within
> a domestic situation. I think getting "flamed" by a stranger, in text only,
> in a forum that actively promotes free thinking and expression, is not
> the same thing at all.

No argument here.

> I probably overreacted. A key phrase hit a button: "Violence is violence.
> Think the thought, speak the word, and you will eventually do the deed."
> By this law, Stephen King is well on his way to being a mass murderer.
> The comparison seems far-fetched?

Or at the least, an exaggeration; as you've said, there is a comparison
to be made, but I agree that the thought and the deed are most
emphatically not the beginning and end of some slippery slope of immorality.

But your own comparison--protesting verbal cruelty is a form of
censorship--is likewise an exaggeration, which was the point of my post.
In my zest to be pithy, I'm afraid I left a lot out.

> I hold that meagre publishing
> success dear to my heart.

As well you should. They're so few and far between, aren't they?

By the by, speaking of Miss Manners: is this conversation appropriate, or
is it taking up valuable shoptalk time? This is a serious question (more
or less), not an attempt to antagonize.

Don Reese__________ wedge -at- unm -dot- edu__________ University of New Mexico

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