We received several private messages this week regarding inappropriate comments posted to our Wall. One person was glad CBS correspondent Lara Logan was raped, and another was threatening President Obama with physical harm. We are not going to repeat their comments but they do violate our ground rules. We strongly disagree with the President and vigorous debate is encouraged, but a few participants hurt the conservative cause by being too extreme. The President and other liberals can be denounced in strong language for their views, but no one should be advocating violence.
When Else Do You Cross The Line?
We welcome opposing views and a discussion is always more interesting when there is a counter argument. Always feel free to disagree with someone’s ideology, but our recommendation is to avoid personal comments. Liberal activist Michael Moore often praises the totalitarian government of Cuba, and we enjoy rebutting his silly claims. A heated ideological debate is entertaining and informative, but there is no need to shift the discussion to personal comments about someone’s weight, appearance or religion. Jon Corzine attacked Chris Christie’s weight in 2009, and now he is the ex-Governor of New Jersey. Lets stick to the issues. We can easily rebut Michael Moore, and there is no need to call attention to his weight.
Stay on Topic
Former liberal Senator Mark Hatfield (R-OR) was a champion of anti-war and pro-nuclear freeze movement. He was best known for the McGovern-Hatfield Amendment which would have ended the Vietnam War, and the Kennedy-Hatfield Nuclear Freeze Resolution.
Conservatives strongly disagreed with the Senator, but a few of them hurt our cause by trying to shift the discussion. Hatfield was involved in an accident when he was 16 and a child was killed. The incident happened three decades earlier, and was not at all relevant to the debate. The diversion only generated sympathy for Hatfield.
Think Before Posting
There is nothing wrong with constructive criticism, but it is often better to make these comments in a private message. The recipient will then appreciate and benefit from your observations. They will often be able to correct the mistake. You can be creating an enemy if you do this through a Wall posting. When you post to a Wall you can be embarrassing them in front of all their friends.
In sending a message think how you would react. Never hesitate to debate and you should point out factual mistakes. If they have posted the wrong unemployment figures, you can correct them. If they have made spelling or grammatical mistakes, we think it is best to tell them in a private message. Our use of social media reflects our style, and there are times when it is best to make the comment off line.