The Return of Civil Discourse

There’s a newfound interest in civil debate over at HuffPo, but it has its limits.
There was a bit of a brouhaha recently when the Huffington Post banned Andrew Breitbart from its front page. The ostensible reason was the latter’s ‘ad hominem’ attacks on Van Jones. Spokesman Mario Ruiz explained the decision:

Andrew Brietbart’s [sic] ad hominem attack on Van Jones in The Daily Caller violates the tenets of debate and civil discourse we have strived for since the day we launched.

Fair enough. We wouldn’t want to see the folks at HuffPo allowing ad hominems or uncivil attacks. Which brings us to Geraldo Rivera, who recently came under fire (more than once) in Libya. The commenters at HuffPo sounded off en masse, and there were certain themes that kept recurring:

  • What a fake. I'm sorry, but I don't believe him...again. He doesn't want to be upped by Engel, and he wants to make a political statement on why they shouldn't have weapons.
  • I saw the full clip and it looked like another Geraldo Fake...!
  • Why would a sniper shoot at heralldough? Another staged 'event'? He's good at that.
  • I wonder how many takes that took. I wonder how much he had to pay the rebels to waste their ammunition firing in the background.

Well, you say, those comments may be ignorant and moronic, but at least they were civil about it. So how about a few death wishes?

Now that’s civil discourse. And what are ad hominem smears without a few racial attacks?

  • The libyan rebels probably said "hey look, there's that Jew from FOX News who changed his name to sound more hispanic”.
  • The Fox "Coconut" (hard, hairy, brown exterior.. hollow, white interior) could probably take shrapnel without flinching. . a direct hit might crack him up!

Charming. It’s a good thing the HuffPo comments section hasn’t devolved into a no-man’s land of ignorance and hate. But look at the bright side: it’s still good for a laugh now and then. Submitted for your consideration, this exchange that took place shortly after the death of Geraldine Ferraro:

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