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View Poll Results: Should politics remain in Debates
Close Debates 1 5.26%
Keep debates open and REMOVE political discussion 10 52.63%
Keep debates open and MAINTAIN political discussion 8 42.11%
Voters: 19. You may not vote on this poll

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  #1  
Old 08-09-18, 11:38 AM
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Politics at ADDF

Lately Iíve been questioning the use of political discussion in the Debate private forum. The current American political climate has been hostile, at the government level down to the supporter and opposition of the current administration and also from those outside looking in. Many years ago we moved the topic to debates because members could not manage conversation without anger, flaming and just outright hostility. I unfortunately have seen that happen now in the private forum, out to the point where we would advocate murder in the name of immigration control. Gob smacked and flabbergasted.

I question if we should continue to allow this topic now as it has served nothing but a divider on ADDF. As an Admin and as a member I can honestly say that Iím spent from politics being everywhere I go. News, Radio, television programming, comedy specials, moviesÖitís just never ending and itís difficult to escape the never ending negativity, fear, rhetoric and sensationalism. Iím not sure that itís healthy for members to participate in what has now become a toxic environment at ADDF. But, I will say that Iím one of what may be a few and Iím looking to membership to help decide next steps for the Debate section so Iíve created a poll to give you a voice in how we proceed. I believe you know my vote will be for no politics but Iím willing to take your votes on the topic into consideration for next steps.

Always know that if we keep politics as a topic, it will go without saying that future engagements will hold firm to the conduct guidelines. This will not only include the engagement of each other but also in the handling of how a conversation is started. If your topic insights a flaming war it will also be removed and warning/infractions will be levied. Know that there are ways to discuss a topic or put a question to the group that can open healthy conversation. There may also be actions taken against those that are unable to engage in healthy debate. Access will be taken away from the private forum if you fall under this category. So, this said, there are actions that can be taken if the membership wishes to keep political discussion at ADDF.

This poll will remain open for 2 weeks to ensure we can achieve a broader range of members. I look forward to your input.

Your poll.

Close debates

Keep debates open and REMOVE political discussion

Keep debates open and MAINTAIN political discussion
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  #2  
Old 08-09-18, 12:07 PM
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Re: Politics at ADDF

Oy vey both our political parties are sad sack pathetic and don't serve us they serve themselves. Very well however.
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  #3  
Old 08-10-18, 04:29 AM
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Re: Politics at ADDF

I'll refrain from voting as I'm not in the USA but if arguing about politics is what people want to do there are plenty of other places to do that like facebook, insta, twitter.
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Old 08-10-18, 07:48 AM
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Re: Politics at ADDF

I haven't voted even though I usually participate in the political threads and I tend to have strong opinions on a lot of things. I'm really not sure Andy. I would like the debate board to continue to exist but I think it's very difficult to keep politics out of most subjects.

Also, I'm not sure if the debates are really toxic. I mean some of the views are very extreme and very unpleasantly so but the person in question I think:

1. Actually holds those beliefs (so weren't trying to be toxic or controversial)

2. Didn't exoress them in an insulting manner. I mean it's the view that's offensive often..not necessarily the expression of it or how it is expressed. (In fact, I think my disagreement was probably voiced in a stronger form than the standard theoffebwive view was expressed. I don't think the person realised that their view is offensive of extreme).

Maybe that doesn't matter but I think it means that you can't avoid what appears to be toxic because it's not the behaviour that is toxic or offensive but the actual views and those of course are highly subjective.

So yeah, to summarise I don't have an answer to your pull.
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Old 08-10-18, 10:00 AM
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Re: Politics at ADDF

I always say I don't succumb to peer pressure but I voted for removal and would rather maintain it actually.

Fuzz wrote a great argument and I've changed my mind.
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  #6  
Old 08-10-18, 01:18 PM
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Re: Politics at ADDF

I think that prohibitions are never good , people must stay calm and they should be tolerant to each other .
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  #7  
Old 08-10-18, 02:30 PM
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Re: Politics at ADDF

I agree with a lot of what Fuzzy said. The murder comment that bothered you Andi, I don't think was said because people had gotten to the point they where they were so angry they couldn't control what they said anymore. They said what they truly believed in that instance and didn't think they thought it was an outrageous thought. My dad would have agreed with her wholeheartedly, its just different culture/mentality I think.

Of course racist comments and lies not based on facts shouldn't be allowed whether the person believes in them or not. I think mods only need to treat those types of comments the same way they deal with sexist comments that are often made on the general forum which are also often unintended.


If a mod just contacts the offender, tells them what they did wrong and gives them a warning. It'll stop. And the moderator should delete the offending posts so they don't incite others. It seems to work well enough with sexist comments, I don't see why it can't work with what was happening in those two threads. And for the entire time I've been looking at political threads here (maybe 2 years), I can't remember any threads getting heated at all. That's actually way less than the general forum.


I'll be disappointed if politics ends up being banned. I like the conversations here much more than any other forum I've ever been on. It feels like friends talking about politics, not total strangers since we have a lot of regulars. And there are different perspectives from all over the world, from different political ideologies, and it's moderated so outright lies aren't usually published. People who don't like politics can always skip those threads.
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  #8  
Old 08-10-18, 02:53 PM
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Re: Politics at ADDF

By the way it really hurts to see there will be some prohibitions at this forum even, i already have enough of it in my country :/
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  #9  
Old 08-10-18, 03:01 PM
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Re: Politics at ADDF

In the current political environment, I prefer that politics stay off ADDF entirely.

This forum's raison d'Ítre is to provide support and information for people with ADHD.

One of the things I most valued about this place was that it (historically) focused primarily on that mission, and didn't get bogged down in the same nasty, pointless, politicized exchanges you can find in every comments section of every news article, on Facebook, and elsewhere, both online and off. It used to be that the Debates section was little-used, and then mostly for threads about marijuana legalization or health insurance that couldn't remain on the open forum under existing guidelines.

For the past 2 years or so, that status quo has fallen by the wayside, with multiple members starting threads explicitly to stir the pot and/or to discuss political issues or players. Most such threads have nothing (directly) to do with sharing support and information for mental health conditions, nor any detectable intention of raising awareness or seeking common ground. Lately, the forum has been full of contentious political threads that serve no purpose that a million other sites couldn't satisfy. To me, it seems mostly to indulge a desire for (not necessarily healthy) stimulation-seeking in the form of arguments. And that type of thing -- especially when it reveals members' uglier sides and more noxious beliefs, or reinforces divisions -- detracts from the uniquely supportive environment that has been a long-standing feature/goal of the site.

Politics -- at least, in the current, hyper-polarized environment -- ruins this place for me, especially as a moderator who is sometimes called upon to deal with the fallout of nasty arguments and poorly-chosen words. I am a volunteer -- I signed on because I wanted to help people with ADHD and other mental health concerns find support and information. I don't want to have to fact-check or police people's political arguments, nor deal with the inevitable whining/insinuations about favoring particular viewpoints.

Don't get me wrong -- I believe that discussing political issues is vitally important for society! But discussing politics here, as I see it, does more harm than good overall. ...Or at least, it makes me grumpy and anxious and makes me want to spend less time here.

I'd be thrilled to see politics off-limits (except, perhaps, for narrow exceptions regarding issues of clear, direct relevance to mental health -- legal status of drugs, health insurance policy, ADHD in the criminal justice system, that sort of thing).
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  #10  
Old 08-10-18, 05:08 PM
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Re: Politics at ADDF

Quote:
Originally Posted by namazu View Post
In the current political environment, I prefer that politics stay off ADDF entirely.

This forum's raison d'Ítre is to provide support and information for people with ADHD.

One of the things I most valued about this place was that it (historically) focused primarily on that mission, and didn't get bogged down in the same nasty, pointless, politicized exchanges you can find in every comments section of every news article, on Facebook, and elsewhere, both online and off. It used to be that the Debates section was little-used, and then mostly for threads about marijuana legalization or health insurance that couldn't remain on the open forum under existing guidelines.

For the past 2 years or so, that status quo has fallen by the wayside, with multiple members starting threads explicitly to stir the pot and/or to discuss political issues or players. Most such threads have nothing (directly) to do with sharing support and information for mental health conditions, nor any detectable intention of raising awareness or seeking common ground. Lately, the forum has been full of contentious political threads that serve no purpose that a million other sites couldn't satisfy. To me, it seems mostly to indulge a desire for (not necessarily healthy) stimulation-seeking in the form of arguments. And that type of thing -- especially when it reveals members' uglier sides and more noxious beliefs, or reinforces divisions -- detracts from the uniquely supportive environment that has been a long-standing feature/goal of the site.

Politics -- at least, in the current, hyper-polarized environment -- ruins this place for me, especially as a moderator who is sometimes called upon to deal with the fallout of nasty arguments and poorly-chosen words. I am a volunteer -- I signed on because I wanted to help people with ADHD and other mental health concerns find support and information. I don't want to have to fact-check or police people's political arguments, nor deal with the inevitable whining/insinuations about favoring particular viewpoints.

Don't get me wrong -- I believe that discussing political issues is vitally important for society! But discussing politics here, as I see it, does more harm than good overall. ...Or at least, it makes me grumpy and anxious and makes me want to spend less time here.

I'd be thrilled to see politics off-limits (except, perhaps, for narrow exceptions regarding issues of clear, direct relevance to mental health -- legal status of drugs, health insurance policy, ADHD in the criminal justice system, that sort of thing).
I didn't think about how the debates threads might affect the mods. I'm really very sorry for causing you (or anyone else) unpleasantness and anxiety

Last edited by Fuzzy12; 08-10-18 at 05:20 PM..
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  #11  
Old 08-10-18, 05:34 PM
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Re: Politics at ADDF

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Originally Posted by Fuzzy12 View Post
I didn't think about how the debates thread might affect the mods. I'm really very sorry for causing you (or anyone else) unpleasantness and anxiety
Much appreciated.

...Though that is why we get paid the big bucks.

(Whoops, did I say that out loud?)

(Just kidding. We don't get paid! Andi doesn't even get shoes! )

Seriously, though, people shouldn't worry too much about the mods when expressing their opinions on this thread! Most of what I said was my personal opinion as a member, and I'd feel that way even if I weren't a moderator. For me, ADDF had been kind of a pleasant oasis of support away from the politically-charged discussions that are inescapable and overwhelming just about everywhere else, and personally, I've not been thrilled to see that oasis dry up.

But do be aware that if you haven't seen too many nasty posts, it's not necessarily because there weren't any, but sometimes because the mods had to remove or edit posts that violated our etiquette guidelines (insults, ethnic slurs, etc. -- political discussions seem to bring out the worst in some people, and it's worse when there are a bunch of people egging each other on).

Last edited by namazu; 08-10-18 at 07:24 PM.. Reason: wrote ADHD instead of ADDF -- oops! ADHD is no oasis! ;)
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  #12  
Old 08-11-18, 11:37 PM
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Re: Politics at ADDF

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Originally Posted by namazu View Post
But do be aware that if you haven't seen too many nasty posts, it's not necessarily because there weren't any, but sometimes because the mods had to remove or edit posts that violated our etiquette guidelines (insults, ethnic slurs, etc. -- political discussions seem to bring out the worst in some people, and it's worse when there are a bunch of people egging each other on).
Wow, I'm surprised. The politics sub has always seemed one of the most respectful and peaceful subs on this forum to me. After all the "gift versus not gift", harsh responses to non-adhder spouses, sexist comments on the relationships sub, the politics sub was quite quiet in comparison. I guess you've been seeing a lot more than I have since you've moderated the sub (or maybe you just have a different perspective than me).

I'd be willing to volunteer to moderate the sub if it continued if someone is moderating it now who doesn't want to be. There's 5 people who voted to keep the sub. Maybe others might step in too so no regular moderator that doesn't like the work would have to do it. I absolutely do not want to make moderators do things they don't want but I do wonder whether there are ways to solve this problem.

I'll say, I don't agree that there are plenty other forums just like this one to discuss politics so I'll be sad to see it go though I'll understand if the majority don't feel the same. I have never seen a political forum where almost everyone seems to try to respect everyone else, backs up their posts with facts, and tries to listen to their opinions. We may not have always succeeded but it does seem like everyone tried. I think it's cause we care about the others in the sub cause others have helped us on the forum or we've helped them. If anyone knows of a similar politics, please let me know. after everything that has happened recently I think in strong part to how uninformed voters are, I've decided never to be uninformed again. thanks.
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Old 08-10-18, 05:50 PM
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Re: Politics at ADDF

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Originally Posted by Fuzzy12 View Post
I didn't think about how the debates threads might affect the mods. I'm really very sorry for causing you (or anyone else) unpleasantness and anxiety
I never thought that side of issue , Midnightstar is very kind person and moderator . I guess nothing is more important than peace of our forum and itís excellent moderators , i wish i could change my vote
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Old 08-10-18, 09:37 PM
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Re: Politics at ADDF

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Originally Posted by namazu View Post

I'd be thrilled to see politics off-limits (except, perhaps, for narrow exceptions regarding issues of clear, direct relevance to mental health -- legal status of drugs, health insurance policy, ADHD in the criminal justice system, that sort of thing).
Great posts Nam.! I also voted for keeping Debates open and prohibiting political discussion. Debating politics always seem to end the same way. A stalemate where both sides are still convinced they are right. This causes divisiveness amongst our membership.

I would really rather not know someoneís political opinions here. They can cause me to feel judgmental at times and even dislike. I donít like that about myself. I also donít like religious debate. I think when you question or challenge someoneís deep ingrained beliefs or faith youíre usually in for a fight. A fight that only causes disdain and disagreement where nobody wins.

Fuzzy did make a great point though about it prohibiting so many topics. Then Nam. posted that clip above. I think thatís a great compromise, Iím ok with. Excellent idea Nam!

I just dislike any thread that causes members to argue, fight or be disrespectful to one another. We all have a lot more in common than just our political or religious beliefs we can share. I just donít want to see division amongst an already too small group of great members.

I think allowing political debate to be limited as Nam mentioned should be an option, I would vote for.

Great points ladies!
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Old 08-10-18, 03:20 PM
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Re: Politics at ADDF

I'm not in the US but voted for keeping debates open but banning political discussion because there's plenty of other places on the internet where people can discuss politics. I tend to avoid debates wherever I can because of the number of fights that break out and I would rather not get accused of not being neutral about political stuff when moderating.


If I help out in the event of a section mod or super not being available, I do try to remain neutral and just deal with the hot headed insults but I think allowing politics makes this forum more likely to be unsupportive towards people who need help. This is a mental health site, not a politics discussion site.
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