Alright, so let's all be honest together and do a little introspection. We all have different backgrounds and different stories; we all have issues that we are particularly sensitive about. We can sit and have a rational discussion all day long, but then someone says something that triggers our deepest, most passionate response... and it's pure emotion. Our ability to think clearly disappears and we're raising our voices (OR TYPING IN ALL CAPS!!!!), calling names, and daring anyone to say it again, emptily threatening violence on the offender.
That issue could be breast cancer if your grandmother has recently been its victim; it could be women's rights if you were raised in a home that repressed its female members; it could be GLBT rights because your favorite cousin has been a victim of bullying; it could be vegetarianism/veganism because your love for animals is so great...
You're ready to go to war for this issue; for these people, animals, and causes that are near and dear to your heart.
My personal pet issue is women's rights and how sex offenders are dealt with. I hate pedophiles and anyone who would violate someone else's body. My body is my property. If I own nothing else in this world, my body and my life belong to ME. I can be who I want and choose whom I want to share myself with. If there is a sin in this world, it is forcing ideas/actions on a person and their being.
It's tough for me to always be rational about this issue. I've been abused, and I've been a member of a religion that tried to convince me I was inferior to men. I was told to submit and be quiet; I was told that it was my duty to have sex with my husband whenever he got the urge. I always resented and rebelled against the role I was supposed to fit into. Nothing gets my blood boiling more than a statement like, "Go back to the kitchen where you belong."
On a site like Think Atheist, our goal is to talk about ALL issues and not allow someone's personal sensitivity to bar open, intellectually honest discussion. If we get too heated about our passions, we should take a step back and try to remind ourselves that it is of the utmost importance to be OPEN to discussion and new information. We cannot be fundamentalists about anything; otherwise, we lose the battle for reason to win out over superstition. Even if we don't like what we're reading, we have to allow everyone a platform. What if they're right? Isn't that how we all ended up atheist?
What's your sacred cow? Can you be open enough to let people voice opinions that vex you to the core? Can you engage in civil discourse without storming off in a huff?
I hope so. Please share your own personal pet issue.