Mopologetics and the Sending of Emails

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Doctor Scratch
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Mopologetics and the Sending of Emails

Post by Doctor Scratch »

Okay. After having read through some 13 or so pages of the "Eric" thread, I think I have arrived at an idea that will address and perhaps solve everybody's concerns. Basically, the whole DCP/Eric tiff erupted after DCP sent "a link" to Eric's stepfather, alerting the stepfather to Eric's critical posts on LDS priesthood activities.

The way I see it, the solution to this is to begin sending links to the people who host DCP's various speaking engagements. On the "Baloney Detector" thread, I wrote:

Someone needs to email Shermer a link to DCP's postings on SHIELDS, so that Shermer will know what he's in for.


DCP has affirmed repeatedly that his emailing of the link to Eric's stepdad was completely ethical, on the grounds that DCP himself would have wanted to be emailed a link. Well, don't you think that Shermer would like to know what kind of debate opponent he'll be up against? Likewise, DCP plans to present on Islam in Orlando soon. Do you think the people there would be interested in looking over some links where DCP says that Muslims will "kill" Mormons if they learn about proxy baptisms? Do you think they'd be interested in a link to his "Jews have few friends in the world" comment, or his noting that Calvinism is "disgusting"? Would the hosts like to know that their invited speaker subscribes to attitudes like this?

Now, we'd have to be completely scrupulous and fair here. Dan said that his email to GoodK's father was only a few lines. Thus, I think the emails to Shermer & et al. should say something like:

Dear Professor Shermer,

I understand that you're due to debate Prof. Daniel C. Peterson quite soon. Since I know that I personally like to know a bit about the people I'll be debating, I thought that you'd be interested in reading over these polemical exchanges of Daniel's:

http://www.shields-research.org/Authors/AUTHORS.html

You'll have to scroll down a bit, but the Peterson section features quite a few polemical correspondences that will give you some insight into his debate style.

Best wishes!


Now, Jersey Girl has stated on the "Eric" thread that Eric's writings and identity are a public matter, so Ray's and others' complaints on his behalf are therefore bunko. Would she thus feel comfortable emailing Shermer and the Orlando people with links to DCP's public comments?

The more I think about all of this, the more I find that I am experiencing a kind of darkness, like this is wrong on some level..... And yet, a lot of knowledgeable and seemingly ethical/moral posters have advocated and defended precisely this behavior. Personally, I will not be emailing Shermer (not without DCP's explicit permission, anyhow), but I am nonetheless interested in hearing why some people (Mopologists especially) would view the "sending of an email" as problematic (or not). Recall, too, that John Tvedtnes once emailed a Dean/Dept. Chair in an effort to block a critic's bid for tenure. My question is: Is this sort of behavior fair game? On what grounds do the apologists justify their actions in this respect?

Just curious.....
"[I]f, while hoping that everybody else will be honest and so forth, I can personally prosper through unethical and immoral acts without being detected and without risk, why should I not?." --Daniel Peterson, 6/4/14

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Re: Mopologetics and the Sending of Emails

Post by Jersey Girl »

Now, Jersey Girl has stated on the "Eric" thread that Eric's writings and identity are a public matter, so Ray's and others' complaints on his behalf are therefore bunko. Would she thus feel comfortable emailing Shermer and the Orlando people with links to DCP's public comments?



Think a little harder, Scratch. When the situation came to the attention of this community, I was among the first to object to Daniel's choice to email a link to the family and asked him point blank to stand down while Eric told his story.

Go back through the threads.

Having said that, no, I wouldn't feel comfortable emailing anyone links to people's posts or online comments. What makes you imagine that I would?

Does Daniel leave himself open to it? Yes.

And so does Eric.

Both have made that choice.
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Re: Mopologetics and the Sending of Emails

Post by Jersey Girl »

My point is, Scratch, is that anyone who wished to do so can easily tie GoodK to Eric and all of his online comments. If someone were to come across that today, would Eric still ____ about it?

The thing is that DCP gave up his identity to the step-dad.

Eric has given up his identity to the entire Internet.

I'm really at the "what the hell difference does it make now?" stage.
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Re: Mopologetics and the Sending of Emails

Post by beastie »

I thought of something similar, but with a hypothetical example.

Let’s pretend that a recent LDS convert participates on a board for LDS and nonbelievers – a board like this one. The convert comes from a fundamentalist EV family, who has reacted harshly to his conversion to Mormonism. In fact, his family thinks he’s been influenced by Satan. Let’s also pretend that his step-father, with whom he has had a problematic relationship in the past, sent out a mass email to his family regarding his daughter’s serious illness. In the email, he’s expressed his certitude that she was cured by the power of faith, because he made a phone call to a televangelist’s phone bank, made a contribution, and asked them to pray for his daughter. In response, they sent him a small prayer cloth with special healing powers that he put under her pillow. In the email, the step-father was quite effusive in expressing his certitude of faith in this particular process.

Now let’s pretend that the now-LDS step-son found this ridiculous, and also felt that the email may have been targeted him in particular. In a moment, taken by the emotional need to vent, the step-son shared a portion of the email on the LDS group and made mocking statements about the belief that a televangelist’s prayer cloth could have healed his sister.

Now let’s pretend that there is another EV member of the board who is acquainted with the convert’s family, and emailed a link to the step-father. And, of course, it caused conflict and more problems.

Would the LDS on the board believe that the EV’s actions were appropriate? Or would they think that it could have been handled differently, and that perhaps part of the EV’s motive was to cause trouble for the LDS convert. Would the LDS think that it could have been better handled privately, or without involving the family? Would there really be a compelling “need” for the EV family to know this information?
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Re: Mopologetics and the Sending of Emails

Post by Jersey Girl »

I'm long past attempting to weigh both sides here because, quite frankly, the parties involved aren't interested in any type of resolution nor can any type of resolution be had. Why do I say that?

Because after years of posting on LDS related boards, the fervency with which you all (the collective you all) stick your noses into eachother's real life business is perhaps the most bizarre example of Mormon life I've ever witnessed in real life and also on these boards. There is NO attempt at resolution. What there is, is the on-going never-ending pissing contest.

I don't want to hear any speeches about how it's like a divorce. You guys (the collective you guys) are in it for the perpetual pissing contest and nothing more.

This is total, time draining ____ and if you (the collective you) want to spend hours of your life dreaming up ways to smite eachother IRL, be my bloody guest. If ever there were a sure fire way of making the non-LDS public believe that Mormons (current and ex) are total nutters, this is it.
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Re: Mopologetics and the Sending of Emails

Post by Doctor Scratch »

Jersey Girl and Beastie---

Thank you for your comments. I especially liked your pointed analogy, Beastie. And Jersey---I can certainly understand why you have reached the "what the hell difference does it make now?" stage. I just have to wonder how this sort of thing might figure into the grander scheme of things, critics vs. Mopologists-wise. At heart, I suppose I'm curious how/why a Mopologist such as Tvedtnes or Peterson would object to similar emails w/links being sent. On the "Baloney" thread, DCP characterized such behavior as "character assassination." I'm just curious why one would count as "character assassination" whereas the other is perfectly justifiable on the grounds that "I would have wanted to know."
"[I]f, while hoping that everybody else will be honest and so forth, I can personally prosper through unethical and immoral acts without being detected and without risk, why should I not?." --Daniel Peterson, 6/4/14

Ray A

Re: Mopologetics and the Sending of Emails

Post by Ray A »

Jersey Girl wrote:I'm long past attempting to weigh both sides here because, quite frankly, the parties involved aren't interested in any type of resolution nor can any type of resolution be had. Why do I say that?

Because after years of posting on LDS related boards, the fervency with which you all (the collective you all) stick your noses into eachother's real life business is perhaps the most bizarre example of Mormon life I've ever witnessed in real life and also on these boards. There is NO attempt at resolution. What there is, is the on-going never-ending pissing contest.

I don't want to hear any speeches about how it's like a divorce. You guys (the collective you guys) are in it for the perpetual pissing contest and nothing more.

This is total, time draining b***s*** and if you (the collective you) want to spend hours of your life dreaming up ways to smite eachother IRL, be my bloody guest. If ever there were a sure fire way of making the non-LDS public believe that Mormons (current and ex) are total nutters, this is it.


With all due respect, Jersey, your post sounded like just another stream of the piss.

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Re: Mopologetics and the Sending of Emails

Post by Jersey Girl »

Ray A wrote:
Jersey Girl wrote:I'm long past attempting to weigh both sides here because, quite frankly, the parties involved aren't interested in any type of resolution nor can any type of resolution be had. Why do I say that?

Because after years of posting on LDS related boards, the fervency with which you all (the collective you all) stick your noses into eachother's real life business is perhaps the most bizarre example of Mormon life I've ever witnessed in real life and also on these boards. There is NO attempt at resolution. What there is, is the on-going never-ending pissing contest.

I don't want to hear any speeches about how it's like a divorce. You guys (the collective you guys) are in it for the perpetual pissing contest and nothing more.

This is total, time draining b***s*** and if you (the collective you) want to spend hours of your life dreaming up ways to smite eachother IRL, be my bloody guest. If ever there were a sure fire way of making the non-LDS public believe that Mormons (current and ex) are total nutters, this is it.


With all due respect, Jersey, your post sounded like just another stream of the piss.


With all due respect, Ray, I don't give a ____ what you think.
Failure is not falling down but refusing to get up.
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Ray A

Re: Mopologetics and the Sending of Emails

Post by Ray A »

Jersey Girl wrote:With all due respect, Ray, I don't give a s*** what you think.


I fully realise that, and you are entitled to your opinion. Sometimes you provide good insights, and I'd like to hear you speak on Mormon Expression. But like they say, some days you're the dog, other days you're the pole.

Maybe coming here makes you too negative, as you reflected yesterday after a great day with your family. Do we really need frequent reminders of how "ugly" we are (collectively)? That's life on the Internet.

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Re: Mopologetics and the Sending of Emails

Post by Jersey Girl »

Ray A wrote: Do we really need frequent reminders of how "ugly" we are (collectively)?


Do you all need to so frequently display it?

No, it's not life in the Internet. It's "life" on LDS related boards. You people have a pathological need to stick your noses into eachother's real life.

You for example, portray Eric as an independent thinking adult and yet you feel a need to hand him his spine on this board. I see your defense of Eric as perhaps the greatest insult you could level at him and in response, he is using you as a vehicle on the thread.

Let him stand on his own!
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Re: Mopologetics and the Sending of Emails

Post by Jersey Girl »

Scratch,

I know you are fully aware that I don't like the methods you use on this board. Having said that, I have no intention of further derailing your thread because you do have a right to post whatever you wish here. Departing the thread.

Jersey Girl
Failure is not falling down but refusing to get up.
Chinese Proverb

Ray A

Re: Mopologetics and the Sending of Emails

Post by Ray A »

Jersey Girl wrote: No, it's not life in the Internet. It's "life" on LDS related boards. You people have a pathological need to stick your noses into eachother's real life.


I was not the one who initially stuck his nose in Eric's personal life.

Jersey Girl wrote: You for example, portray Eric as an independent thinking adult and yet you feel a need to hand him his spine on this board. I see your defense of Eric as perhaps the greatest insult you could level at him and in response, he is using you as a vehicle on the thread.

Let him stand on his own!


I fully realise you don't like Eric, and I think the feeling is mutual.

Ray A

Re: Mopologetics and the Sending of Emails

Post by Ray A »

Doctor Scratch wrote:The more I think about all of this, the more I find that I am experiencing a kind of darkness, like this is wrong on some level..... And yet, a lot of knowledgeable and seemingly ethical/moral posters have advocated and defended precisely this behavior. Personally, I will not be emailing Shermer (not without DCP's explicit permission, anyhow), but I am nonetheless interested in hearing why some people (Mopologists especially) would view the "sending of an email" as problematic (or not). Recall, too, that John Tvedtnes once emailed a Dean/Dept. Chair in an effort to block a critic's bid for tenure. My question is: Is this sort of behavior fair game? On what grounds do the apologists justify their actions in this respect?

Just curious.....


My understanding is that DCP is not ashamed of these exchanges, and gave permission for them to be publicly posted on SHIELDS. Therefore there would be nothing unethical about sending a link to Shermer.

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Re: Mopologetics and the Sending of Emails

Post by Daniel Peterson »

Eric's stepdad has been a friend of mine for roughly twenty years, and he and I have discussed many things over the years, including Eric.

Writing to a friend with whom I had been corresponding a fair amount in the previous couple of weeks to draw his attention to something on a public message board that was relevant to something that we had discussed, off and on, for years, seems to me rather different than what Scratch proposes here.

But Scratch will do what Scratch does. And I'll live with it.

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Re: Mopologetics and the Sending of Emails

Post by beastie »

Writing to a friend with whom I had been corresponding a fair amount in the previous couple of weeks to draw his attention to something on a public message board that was relevant to something that we had discussed, off and on, for years, seems to me rather different than what Scratch proposes here.


Would you have thought that the EV in my hypothetical was taking the best course of action?
We hate to seem like we don’t trust every nut with a story, but there’s evidence we can point to, and dance while shouting taunting phrases.

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Re: Mopologetics and the Sending of Emails

Post by Doctor Scratch »

Daniel Peterson wrote:Eric's stepdad has been a friend of mine for roughly twenty years, and he and I have discussed many things over the years, including Eric.

Writing to a friend with whom I had been corresponding a fair amount in the previous couple of weeks to draw his attention to something on a public message board that was relevant to something that we had discussed, off and on, for years,


Which was what? Eric's problems with the LDS Church and its practices, culture, and habits?

seems to me rather different than what Scratch proposes here.


On the basis of what? Your friendship with Eric's stepfather? For all you know, I'm longtime friends with Shermer. If that's the case, would I be justified--in your view--in contacting him?
"[I]f, while hoping that everybody else will be honest and so forth, I can personally prosper through unethical and immoral acts without being detected and without risk, why should I not?." --Daniel Peterson, 6/4/14

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Re: Mopologetics and the Sending of Emails

Post by Daniel Peterson »

beastie wrote:And, of course, it caused conflict and more problems.

Your analogy probably breaks down at this point.

I know that Eric claims that my sharing the link with his stepfather caused conflict and problems, but Eric's stepfather has told me that it didn't. That, yes, there are (and, as I knew, have long been) problems, but not on account of my having shared the link.

Was there a "compelling need" for Eric stepfather to have the link? Plainly, no. Precisely because there wasn't really anything in it that was new or shocking to him (which makes even more plausible his statement to me that it didn't cause any significant new conflict or problems). In sending it to him, I didn't imagine for a moment that I was sending him something that was earth-shatteringly new, nor even all that important. But we had talked for many years (even about Eric), and had been going back and forth somewhat more than usual in the previous week or two, and I judged that he would want to know.

If, in my relationships with friends, I communicated to them only what they had a "compelling need" to know, we would seldom communicate at all. Perhaps that's how it is for some of you here. But not for me. My friends and I exchange insights, jokes, political comments, links, travel tips, family news, personal stories, jibes, book recommendations, advice, news items, sports commentary, and many other things for which there is, strictly speaking, no "compelling need."

This wasn't -- and isn't -- as big a deal as some here want to make it out to be. It didn't fundamentally alter things within the family.

Doctor Scratch wrote:
Writing to a friend with whom I had been corresponding a fair amount in the previous couple of weeks to draw his attention to something on a public message board that was relevant to something that we had discussed, off and on, for years,

Which was what? Eric's problems with the LDS Church and its practices, culture, and habits?

On the whole, no. That wasn't the issue.

Doctor Scratch wrote:
seems to me rather different than what Scratch proposes here.

On the basis of what? Your friendship with Eric's stepfather? For all you know, I'm longtime friends with Shermer. If that's the case, would I be justified--in your view--in contacting him?

It would certainly make your contacting him look less like the notion you've sketched here: a rather malevolent act by someone hoping to make trouble for me.

I share all sorts of things with friends. And I'm perfectly fine if you do. But, with the exception of, say, occasionally writing to a newspaper columnist about a politician or writing a letter of recommendation, I'm not sure that I've ever sent an e-mail or a letter to a complete stranger about somebody else.

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Re: Mopologetics and the Sending of Emails

Post by Doctor Scratch »

Daniel Peterson wrote:It would certainly make your contacting him look less like the notion you've sketched here: a rather malevolent act by someone hoping to make trouble for me.


I'm sorry---I'm confused. Why would it be "malevolent" to send an innocuous email that does nothing more than refer someone to some online writings of yours? You have said before that you're not the least bit embarrassed about the SHIELDS stuff. Have you changed your mind?
"[I]f, while hoping that everybody else will be honest and so forth, I can personally prosper through unethical and immoral acts without being detected and without risk, why should I not?." --Daniel Peterson, 6/4/14

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Re: Mopologetics and the Sending of Emails

Post by Daniel Peterson »

Scratchy, Scratchy.

You have a track record. Three years long. Obsessively malevolent.

Come on, Scratchy.

The feigned naïveté just looks silly.

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Doctor Scratch
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Re: Mopologetics and the Sending of Emails

Post by Doctor Scratch »

Daniel Peterson wrote:Scratchy, Scratchy.

You have a track record.


Is argumentum ad hominem all you've got? I ask again: what would be the problem with sending an innocuous email---worded just as my above sample text was worded? On what grounds could you possible object?

Three years long. Obsessively malevolent.

Come on, Scratchy.


Actually, this is detrimental to your own defense vis-à-vis the Eric Affair. You have a multi decade history of smearing critics, attacking them, sending them hostile and aggressive emails. When all this is taken into account (your FARMS articles, your SHIELDS correspondence) it is pretty much beyond any doubt that you intended to cause pain and harm.

Care to re-adjust your argument, my dear Professor P.?
"[I]f, while hoping that everybody else will be honest and so forth, I can personally prosper through unethical and immoral acts without being detected and without risk, why should I not?." --Daniel Peterson, 6/4/14

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Re: Mopologetics and the Sending of Emails

Post by Daniel Peterson »

Doctor Scratch wrote:Care to re-adjust your argument, my dear Professor P.?

Nope. You and I aren't moral equivalents, Scratchy.

I've never attempted to do to anyone what you've sought to do to me.

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