Hat in hand

Mon Feb 21 20:54:41 UTC 2000

I'm thoroughly sorry if I overreacted.
I apparently came across a good deal
angrier than I in fact was, and evidently
took the general tone of Anne's message
as quite a bit more contemptuous than
she intended. This is one hazard of
e-mail I haven't quite overcome yet--there's
no voice or face to give clues, and I don't
know any of you yet.

I still think that whoever these people are
who want the Commandments posted in
schools, they might not all be 'narrow' in their
approach to faith or translation, even if pushy;
also I do recall the phrase "idiocy of their
beliefs" being used by Anne, for which there
seemed no non-insulting interpretation. I
reacted. (I hope others would have too.)
However, it's clear that my sarcasm was
insulting in the same way, so forgive me,
and I mean that.

As for Bob Fitzke, NO NO I DON'T MEAN
that someone with no belief in a divinity
believes in nothing important!! PLEASE don't
think this, as I meant just the opposite:
that whatever you do believe in as a
life-directing or life-interpreting system
or whatever--that's what I was calling religion,
no matter how uncodified or how unrelated
to any deity--will determine what's really
important to you, and it will be different for
every different religion-thus-defined.
Which really sounds like a truism now that
I unpack it, but perhaps we are all allowed
one of those.  I was thinking taboo words are
taboo precisely because they violate some dearly
held value--that's the sense in which I meant
they were necessarily defined by "religion"...

Anyway, I am now wondering, would racist
epithets, for example, qualify as universally
taboo these days? Probably even more
than the F-word. Whereas at one time, when
racism was OK by many people (shudder),
they weren't taboo--just rude, like 'shit'.

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