Joined: May 2002
Hi. Steve Reuland here. Given that my bouncing messages here has caused some amount of consernation, I figured I'd explain myself.
1. The person known as "Andy H" and various other pseudonyms has effectively been banned. He apparently uses multiple IP addresses which makes it very hard to ban him outright. Reed and Wesley, who run the technical aspects of the blog (all props to them) are doing what they can, but they work their tails off to make this blog what it is, and problems like this just come with the territory. I am NOT trying to give anyone a hard time while ignoring the root of the problem. The root of the problem is being dealt with, but it ain't an easy problem to deal with (and out of my hands anyway).
2. When I moved "Andy H's" comment and all of those that responded to him, I purposely did not try to differentiate those that were legit from those that weren't. The obvious reason for that is that I don't want to pass judgment on those responses that were okay vs. those that were not. That puts me in a position that I don't want to be in. All of them were off-topic, and I figured it would be best if I treated them all the same way. If I let some of them stand and others not stand, then I'd be yelled at for selective moderation. (Of course got yelled at anyway, but like I say, it comes with the territory... )
3. I screwed up when I used the "junk" function to try to move comments here. I thought that would move comments to the BW, but instead it put them into another category of "unpublished" comments. They are not deleted. But I also don't know how to get them back or put them here. This is my fault, and not what I intended. If it really matters to anyone, I'll try to do what I can to get them here. (Unfortunately, that means leaning on Wesley to fix the problem, since I don't know how to do it.)
4. I really don't take kindly to the suggestion that moderation equals censorship. That is nonsense. We have a fairly liberal policy concerning comments, and have banned very few people, but that never means that one can post whatever one pleases. I consider comments to be a valuable tool for generating feedback, critique, and to add additional information. If I didn't see things this way, I wouldn't even open them in the first place (every poster can just keep them closed if he or she pleases). That being said, it really defeats the purpose of having comments when a lot of people use them to lob insults at each other, regardless of who started it.
5. And my final comment is not really related to my current bouncing of messages, but I'd like to make a plea to those of us who are pro-evolution and anti-ID not to make comments that have no other purpose other than to insult IDists (please don't call them IDiots), so-called "fundies", or worst of all, religion in general. I honestly don't see the point in any of that. Our goal is to explain to the population at large what's wrong with ID/creationist claims and arguments. If you don't like religion, I hate to break it to you, but several of our contributors (including Wesley) are religious. And yet we all manage to get along because we find common ground in science and reason. If you want to make jabs at people who have conservative, fundamentalist beliefs, well guess what? You're preaching to the choir. You are saying nothing profound or original by pointing out that there is something wrong with the way some of these people think. Who, precisely, do you think such attacks manage to influence? Not me -- I'm already on board. Not them, they just use such attacks to reinforce their inaccurate view that all of us are a bunch of as pinko atheist humanistic anti-religious whatever the #### it is we're suppsed to be. How about those people sitting on the fence? You'll influence them, one hopes, with lucid explanations about what's wrong with creationism, not with crude attacks on religion or political points of view with which they may have sympathy. Just saying is all.