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Author Topic: Acceptable Topics on Bands  (Read 1443 times)
KF6VIY
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Posts: 6




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« on: September 03, 2007, 08:07:07 PM »

I live in southern California but this could apply anywhere in the USA. Today, 9/3 I was listening to a QSO on my HT. There was a heated discussion between 2 ops about religion. One said religion and politics are not acceptable topics for amateur radio. The other said it was his right of free speech. Finally the owner of the repeater threatened to shut it down if the religion topic continued.

Interestingly, the one op who said religion was not a topic for the amateur bands, used the word "bull---." Hhmm, I thought profanity was not permissible.

So, is religion a taboo topic on amateur radio?
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K7KBN
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Posts: 2825




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« Reply #1 on: September 03, 2007, 10:31:01 PM »

Generally, one tries to avoid discussions of sex, religion and politics.
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73
Pat K7KBN
CWO4 USNR Ret.
ONAIR
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Posts: 1747




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« Reply #2 on: September 04, 2007, 02:03:45 AM »

   I've heard just about everything under the sun discussed over the air.  The one discussion that really heated up my headphones was a of an older ham telling a younger ham how to seduce women! (in the physical sense)  No profanity was used, but I don't think a lot of parents would hve wanted their kids to hear that QSO!
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N4CQR
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Posts: 567




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« Reply #3 on: September 04, 2007, 06:00:20 AM »

Now that's what I call an Elmer!
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N8UZE
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Posts: 1524




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« Reply #4 on: September 04, 2007, 08:17:06 AM »

What is or is not acceptable can be a variable.

Basically profanity, vulgarity, and obscenity are not only unacceptable but are also a violation of the FCC rules.

For politics, religion, and sex, it will depend on what you are talking about and who you are talking to.

For example, you and a good friend discussing what is the specific meaning of a religious text is fine so long as you don't get confrontational. On the other hand, debating the merits of various religions with people in other countries is not a good idea.  It's not exactly taboo but there is just too much risk of offending the person.

Similarly with politics.  Discussing it with someone you know well is quite different than with someone you barely know.

Similarly with sex.  Advising a someone to be nice to someone they are interested in is quite different than a seduction lesson.
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KE3WD
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Posts: 5689




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« Reply #5 on: September 04, 2007, 09:09:38 AM »

It is called, "Decency".  

Far too many these days don't seem to have any regard for such.  


Riley tells us to turn the big knob.  


I think what we really need is the big stick.  


!
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WB2WIK
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Posts: 20634




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« Reply #6 on: September 04, 2007, 12:05:31 PM »

No problem discussing religion on the ham bands; however it is a repeater owner's right to shut his equipment off for any reason at all, if he chooses to.

Sounds like that particular repeater owner just didn't like the discussion so he shut it down.  No big deal, he'll probably turn it back on again.

As for the "BS" verbage, it's on the border of the law -- when the word appears in the dictionary, it's difficult to call it "profanity," and I think I've already seen this one appear in some dictionaries!

Whether it's profane or not doesn't matter: It's in bad taste and again, a repeater owner can certainly shut his system down for any reason he chooses.

WB2WIK/6
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N8UZE
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« Reply #7 on: September 04, 2007, 12:38:22 PM »

Actually most dictionaries, except those aimed at younger people, do include profane, vulgar, and obscene words and identify them as being such.
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N8UZE
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« Reply #8 on: September 04, 2007, 12:40:00 PM »

I suspect the repeater owner shut it down due to the fact that the discussion was getting heated and out of hand rather than for the topic per se.  One reason that religion is a risky topic is because some people do get out of hand when discussing it.
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KE3WD
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Posts: 5689




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« Reply #9 on: September 04, 2007, 04:09:21 PM »

>>it's on the border of the law -- when the word appears in the dictionary, it's difficult to call it "profanity," and I think I've already seen this one appear in some dictionaries!<<


Cite reference.  


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W3LK
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Posts: 5639




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« Reply #10 on: September 04, 2007, 04:58:23 PM »

<< Cite reference. >.

The Oxford American Dictionary, for one.

73,

Lon - W3LK
Naugatuck, Connecticut
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A smoking section in a restaurant makes as much sense as a peeing section in a swimming pool.
KE3WD
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Posts: 5689




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« Reply #11 on: September 04, 2007, 07:41:15 PM »

No, I meant cite reference for a word being in the dictionary meaning that the word is not profane or vulgar and therefore you can use said word in public, or more specifically, on the Amateur Bands in prime time.  


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W2RDD
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Posts: 191




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« Reply #12 on: September 06, 2007, 06:02:11 AM »

There was a time when religion and politics could be discussed rationally in a non-confrontational manner.

That is no longer the case as the country becomes more and more polarized. Suggest keeping those subjects off the amateur bands and on AM talk radio where foaming at the mouth screaming matches are encouraged.

There are many pleasant and interesting topics to chat about on the amateur bands. Let's try to be civil with each other.
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N3OX
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Posts: 8847


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« Reply #13 on: September 06, 2007, 07:11:20 AM »

"There was a time when religion and politics could be discussed rationally in a non-confrontational manner."

I kinda doubt that's REALLY true... but I'll buy that it's true in comparison to the climate of thoughtless argumentation and "the loudest one wins as long as it's his show" on cable "news" channels and AM talk radio.

Still, as a species we're still basically killing each other constantly over politics and religion, so I feel like maybe it's a little too incendiary for a radio service that's supposed to promote technical pursuits, communications skills and international good will.

You're ALWAYS going to find someone who's offended by your particular religious conversation... even if it's a discussion on comparison and contrast of Judaism, Islam and Christianity carried out in a reasoned, calm, and educated fashion by a 4X, an EP and a W0.

In fact, that's probably the MOST incendiary because the bigots and the zealots will see the worst thing imaginable in that conversation... that one of their own is associating with the enemies.

Even conversations that appear to be benign on these topics are going to make listening parties worried or upset.

We all have to use our judgment on these topics, but just remember that your audience is everyone you have propagation to, not just the ones who are able to remain calm about religion and politics.

Dan



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73,
Dan
http://www.n3ox.net

Monkey/silicon cyborg, beeping at rocks since 1995.
ONAIR
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Posts: 1747




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« Reply #14 on: September 07, 2007, 12:14:43 AM »

  People seem to have a way of turning almost any topic into an argument nowadays!  Maybe it's just a reflection of the increased stress in our modern society.
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