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Author Topic: Politics in amateur radio forums?  (Read 14821 times)
N4UM
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Posts: 473




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« on: March 31, 2012, 11:52:02 AM »

I've noticed a growing number of politically based comments – both from the left and the right (but most often from the lunatic fringe and those who seem to be off their medications) that manage to find their way into the forums and “reply” sections of eHam.net.  Politics, certainly at the “sound bite” level,  has turned into a blood sport and  is becoming more pervasive. I get enough of it on TV, in newspapers, in magazines and in private conversations with friends. I don't check in to amateur radio forums to hear about right wing conspiracies, gun control, the evils of Obamacare, property rights vs. individual rights etc.  Enough already!  There are plenty of other sites where one can go to indulge their appetite for such material. I personally find it annoyingly intrusive on a site devoted to amateur radio

While I support the notion of free speech, I don't see private internet forums about amateur radio as being an appropriate place for political sniping.  Internet forums such as eHam.net are private entities and have every right to control the content they permit on their sites.  They also have every right to permit political  content if they so choose.    However, I personally feel  they are making a mistake by permitting off topic politically charged statements in forums supposedly devoted to amateur radio.
 
Granted, there certainly are aspects of ham radio that involve matters of politics -  HOA's with restrictions on antennas,  the sale of amateur frequencies to private bidders, the use of amateur radio in emergency communications etc.  These things are relevant to the hobby and should be fair game for discussion.  Discussion of government sponsored healthcare, gas prices, abortion rights, welfare, insider trading, religious freedom, gun control , the current whereabouts of Elvis and a host of other emotionally charged issues really should have no place in an amateur radio forum.  Of course, that's just my opinion.

I suggest that eHam.net consider prohibiting the expression of political comments in their existing forums, and if they so chose, set up a separate forum for political discussions that seem to have at least some sort of bearing on amateur radio issues.  Call it “Political Issues in Amateur Radio,”  “The Looney Bin” - whatever.  If a few irrelevant political  comments having nothing to do with amateur radio manage to sneak into such a forum – that's OK.   At least participants is such a forum will have been put on notice about what to expect.

At the very least I would urge my fellow amateurs to curb the infliction of their own political beliefs upon other eHam.net readers.

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KE4YOG
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Posts: 182




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« Reply #1 on: March 31, 2012, 12:58:19 PM »

I dont think that this is the place for politics unless it involves ham radio. There is a time and a place for things but this is not the place. There is enough political forums out there that a person can go there and have fun debating. A group of us on Facebook tend to needle each other on politics. We can disagree but we stay friends. We dont have personal attacks but we do go pretty hard at each others political thought. If some one gets offended by what the think is a personal attack we are good enough friends to listen to the one that thinks he was wrong and work it out. Now religion is another story...
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K1CJS
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Posts: 6034




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« Reply #2 on: April 01, 2012, 06:15:04 AM »

I've noticed that some mention of that subject creeps into discussions once in a while, but I just ignore it--unless it adds to the discussion.  Now, I'm not saying that the originator is looking to discuss those things, but it seems to me that the only people that take notice of things are the ones looking for those things in the first place.

To my point of view, if such things do come up on occasion, ignore them.  You're not ever going to get things done just the way you want--unless you start your own site and moderate it to the point that nobody wants to go there!
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KD0REQ
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Posts: 934




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« Reply #3 on: April 02, 2012, 10:42:06 AM »

go back to the etiology (history) of a word to determine how appropriate its use is.

for this one, "poli" means MANY, and "tics" means Nasty Little Bloodsucking Parasites That Spread Disease.

now, do YOU want to be responsible for putting more of this crud on the air?

thought so.
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EI4GMB
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Posts: 166




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« Reply #4 on: April 02, 2012, 12:42:45 PM »

Man is by nature a political animal

Aristotle
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'You can never plan the future by the past'

'Those who don't know history are destined to repeat it.'

Edmund Burke (1729-1797)
WY4J
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Posts: 110




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« Reply #5 on: April 08, 2012, 01:32:57 PM »

Just like everything else, our great hobby is becoming as charged and politically divided as every thing has in this country. I have enjoyed this hobby for almost 40 years and I do not believe politics should play a part in amateur radio or any hobby unless our hobby makes you part of a political debate team. My parents taught me to stay away from politics and religion as very controversial topics that will only bring discord and ill feelings among friends. My other passions is skeet shooting, you don't hear two many political arguments among folks carrying shotguns.

Finally, the operators of this web site should not take political sides in a debate that will only damage our hobby.
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EI4GMB
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« Reply #6 on: April 08, 2012, 03:55:17 PM »

Ditto Eddy!
However, I think this is just a fact of life. Hams talk about many different subjects just like everyone else. One has only to listen to 80m any night of the week to see this. As long as things are not allowed get out of hand I think everyone is entitled to their opinion. It's called freedom of expression, a great american tradition.
On the whole, I find the moderators on eHam unbiased and reluctant to take sides.
I suppose politics stimulates debate which is why it is probably allowed here. If you go to other sites like QRZ you will find they ban all political discussion yet allow comments on Religion. Again both sites have their own ploys for stimulating activity.
Indeed, I have had this very debate about religion and politics many times myself and have even written articles about it. However, I've come to the conclusion that although discussion of politics and religion should be banned on radio forums (and I can speak having lived through the negative effects of politics and religion here in Ireland) we really don't live in an ideal world.
I believe, all we can do at the end of the day, is be respectful and mindful of the feelings of others when we express our own thoughts or opinions.

Kind Regards

Fred EI4GMB
« Last Edit: April 08, 2012, 04:00:18 PM by EI4GMB » Logged

'You can never plan the future by the past'

'Those who don't know history are destined to repeat it.'

Edmund Burke (1729-1797)
K8QV
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Posts: 51




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« Reply #7 on: April 09, 2012, 12:33:54 PM »

Enjoy your free speech before Obama takes it away and starts killing old people and kittens.
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K6AER
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« Reply #8 on: April 10, 2012, 03:00:43 PM »

My Troll-O-Meter just pegged.
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AC5UP
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« Reply #9 on: April 10, 2012, 06:43:18 PM »



Kitten:   The other white meat


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Never change a password on a Friday                
K1DA
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Posts: 500




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« Reply #10 on: April 11, 2012, 07:58:33 AM »

One  can always solve difficult  problems by BANNING THINGS, right?Huh
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N4UM
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Posts: 473




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« Reply #11 on: April 11, 2012, 12:59:36 PM »

Old people I can understand but kittens?  What about puppies and babies?
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EI4GMB
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Posts: 166




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« Reply #12 on: April 11, 2012, 02:52:29 PM »

One  can always solve difficult  problems by BANNING THINGS, right?Huh

Politics and Religion cause too many arguments on radio forums, that's the problem! Wink

As for the kittens and puppies, maybe someone should call in the A.S.P.C.A! Grin

73,

Fred EI4GMB
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'You can never plan the future by the past'

'Those who don't know history are destined to repeat it.'

Edmund Burke (1729-1797)
K1DA
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Posts: 500




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« Reply #13 on: April 11, 2012, 06:46:00 PM »

What may be "too many arguements" in the evah' so "progressive" European world may just be interesting discussions here.  I use an ON OFF switch instead of the "banning button". 
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EI4GMB
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Posts: 166




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« Reply #14 on: April 12, 2012, 06:48:49 AM »

As others have said, one has only to look at the current state of political and religious discourse in America to realize that people there cannot be respectful and mindful of the feelings of others when they express their own thoughts or opinions.
America seems to be a country where ignorance and ignorant comment is bliss and where it is folly to be wise! Wink
« Last Edit: April 12, 2012, 06:55:34 AM by EI4GMB » Logged

'You can never plan the future by the past'

'Those who don't know history are destined to repeat it.'

Edmund Burke (1729-1797)
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