The Death of Civil Discourse: Libtards, Nutjobs, and Trolls

Civil discourse is dead in America. Considered thought, rational analysis, and meaningful discussions are a lost art. Name calling is the new debate tactic.

Whenever I write something others may disagree with it is often met with invectives and name-calling rather than rational argument. While this is not universally true (many people who disagree with me engage in intelligent disagreement) it is a growing theme in the national discussion.

Those on the “left” (another shallow, meaningless label) are libtards, trolls, shills, or, my favorite, barking moonbats.

And on the “right” (not correct by default, just different) we have wingnut, nutjob, Rethuglican, and teatard.

Labels accomplish nothing. There are as meaningless and crass as calling someone with glasses four-eyes, an amputee stumpy, or an acne-ravaged teen pizza face (which we did to one of my dearest friends in school.)

Name calling is the equivalent of a playground argument where one yells. “I am taking my ball and going home.”

This country faces serious issues. Whether you see President Trump as the face of the solution or the problem doesn’t matter. If, in a discussion, you resort to name calling over presenting, and listening to, arguments you add nothing to our progress.

Arguing about something a previous administration did as justification, or excuse, for the actions of the present administration is another logical and intellectual fallacy. It is not a valid argument or excuse for continuing behavior.

If you don’t believe me, try this. Next time you get a speeding ticket, go to court and argue there were other drivers speeding. See if that gets you off.

I admit to one thing. I take a somewhat perverse pleasure whenever I receive a vehement response to something I write. I have this mental picture of this person, frothing at the mouth, wailing and gnashing their teeth, as they pound out their response to my words. If the response is virulent, it heightens my enjoyment.  Nothing quite so satisfying as striking a chord that prompts a reaction.


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