I'm sorry that Martha is resentful, but what I asked others on this list was what TOPICS are appropriate for discussion. If the question of whether HIV causes AIDS is an appropriate discussion, then no one should be surprised if that discussion goes on for a while and becomes heated, because there is a lot at stake. If it is not appropriate, then I for one would not engage in it any further. But if a topic is appropriate, then those who think the discussion is going on too long should either delete the posts or leave this list, absolutely. Otherwise they are simply trying to shut others up.

The issue of the tone of posts is a different matter. I do not think it is an ad hominen attack to post information which contradicts a statement made here. It might be an ad hominen attack to say that the left is overly tolerant of stupid and uninformed viewpoints, although I would say that the left needs to deal with stupidity and ignorance in its ranks if it is ever to get anywhere. So in some cases, especially when someone is claiming that HIV does not cause AIDS, a more pointed response might indeed be appropriate.

On 2/16/07, Martha Livingston <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
I second Andrea's view, and frankly resent Balter's assertion that
those who don't like list clutter can bloody well leave.


>While I am not able to provide a list on appropriate topics, I can only offer
>that, in my experience, list etiquette suggests that filling up other
>subscribers' inboxes with a flurry of posts whose text contains snarky ad
>hominem attacks should be kept to a minimum.
>
>Frankly, sometimes posts come off more as a clashing of egos than
>ideas. While I
>suspect that this is not the intention, I believe it to be a logical
>interpretation.
>
>Sincerely,
>
>Andrea Smith
>
>
>
>
>
>Andrea Smith
>MSc Candidate
>Department of Community Health & Epidemiology
>Dalhousie University
>5790 University Avenue
>Halifax, NS
>Canada, B3H 1V7
>Tel: (902) 494-6235
>[log in to unmask]

--
Martha Livingston, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Health and Society
SUNY College at Old Westbury
Box 210
Old Westbury, New York 11568
(516) 876-2748



--
www.michaelbalter.com

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Michael Balter
Contributing Correspondent, Science
[log in to unmask]
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