Hello everyone.
It was brought to my attention that some of the agnostics on this site are feeling rather brutally attacked.
Let's take a moment to remember that for some people, de-conversion is a process, and a very painful one at that.
Instead of becoming heavy handed in policing discussions, I think that as adults, we can all remember to be a bit civil, even if we don't see eye to eye.
I'd like to recommend perhaps some type of buddy system for agnostics to befriend atheists and discuss things in a more gentle manner.
What does everyone think? Perhaps a safer environment than some of the more heated debates?
Agnostics out there, keep in mind that when you wade into a hot topic, it's a free for all. Even best friends here will debate passionately about their ideals. Don't take it personally, even when it might seem like a direct attack. Keep in mind that for as difficult as it is for you to go through the de-conversion process or even become brave enough to explore things you have been programmed to believe are above speculation, some atheists DO know where you are coming from... and know what is at the other side. Forgive their impatience that might lead to reckless words. It is with the intention of hurrying you along to the place they are now, (dare I say a happier place?) or at the very least showing you that it IS safe to express your opinion fully and clearly without fear of lightning bolt or nasty whispers.

Guidelines will be coming soon.
It is a pity that they are even necessary, yes? Let's try and make them a formality, nothing more!

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Why would atheists have a problem with an agnostics?
I don't think it was to agnostics specifically, I think it was/is during heated debates in general that some members felt attacked for not coming to the exact same conclusion as the majority. :)
People I debate (I've mostly dealt with religious theists) don't seem to understand that an argument about their beliefs or logic is not an attack about them personally.

I do my best to separate the person making the argument from the argument itself. That's difficult to do sometimes when many of us are such personal creatures, which in most any other situation is a good thing. The best debates are between people who can say "I may not like your ideas, but I do like you."
We don't expect everyone to get along, like each other or always agree. We do, however expect everyone to act in an adult manner.
I'm the first one to say that my debate tactics are cutthroat and to the point. I'm not a subtle person here. This reminder goes as much for me as for everyone.

Like I said. Let's keep the guidelines as a formality and practice civility willingly. That doesn't ever mean compromising your stance, it just means being empathetic to this human situation we find ourselves in and the various stages of development we'll encounter in others.
It was brought to the mods attention that during a debate someone claiming to be agnostic was called ignorant. That is all I know and all I can say.
I agree that we should all make sure that we're civil in our debates. I've noticed some debates where things got kind of mean somewhat quickly. I'd also appreciate it if people tried not to use profanity - not because I'm a prude but because I check out this site while I'm at work, and I don't want to be red-flagged. I suspect others might be in the same boat.
Oy! I type fast. Very fast. Actually I type as fast as I talk and that's impressive. It means I also use my normal tone for posting that I do in day-to-day speech which isn't all that pretty.
I'll try and refrain from my usual profanity laced tirades while in discussions, but be warned if you open my blogs!
I tend to avoid overt profanity simply because I find it tends to detract from the argument at hand, acting as a distraction. Plus, when I do use profanity, it has that much more effect due to its scarcity.
You and Kurt Vonnegut share a similar take on profanity. Well, maybe not Vonnegut himself, but the narrator in Hocus Pocus.

----profanity and obscenity entitle people who don't want unpleasant information to close their eyes and ears to you.
Heh. I'd wager that simply sharing atheist beliefs entitle people who don't want unpleasant information to close their eyes and ears to me. At least in this day and age.
As an author, my tone is an identifying feature. Even when I'm working in a sphere that isn't appropriate for strong language, it's still easy to pick out what's mine and what isn't, but you can call my usage of it a fingerprint, if not a full body line up.
You can't tell that I'm getting frustrated in a debate by the over use of it vulgarities. THAT would make me less of a writer. Mainly it's inserted for meter or distinction in the communication of ideas. Profanity is to me what bold type or bullets are to others. A simple mind might regress to naughty words when logic fails and emotions rule. You won't see that in me. What I do is reflect my era, nation of origins and personality.
Polite writers might be more socially acceptable, but when we look back upon them, it was those who stepped outside conventional language that were remembered. I seriously doubt I'll ever be an author of such standing, but the best I can do is embrace all paths in that attempt. :)
That said, now I'm actually curious as to how much profanity I use compared to other writers...hmm.. opinions welcome!


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