As part of the discussion for the recent post about the Boy Scouts not giving an Eagle Badge to a gay scout, we were talking about Eagle Scouts returning their badges. I have a question about the moderation in that thread.
posted by andoatnp to Etiquette/Policy at 10:30 AM (87 comments total)
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Here is the comment of mine that was deleted. The italicized part is someone else I was replying to:
I can see both sides, actually. Discounting people who actually support this homophobic policy, does one return their badge to mark their protest, or does one keep it with the idea that the movement itself is better than the bigots running it? Do you write off the movement entirely, or remain within it in hopes of bettering it?
I wonder if these people would return their badges if the scouts announced a whites-only policy.
I'm genuinely curious if other people see this differently. To me, there isn't a moral difference between a whites-only policy and a straights-only policy.
So, one, I'm interested in getting a better understanding of why my comment crossed some kind of Metafilter line and had to be deleted. I have emailed with a moderator about this, but I don't feel like I understand exactly what line was crossed. I would also be interested in getting some kind of community feedback about this as well.
Two, I'm curious if the analogy I'm making is inaccurate in some meaningful way, or if it's more a problem because it's upsetting to people. To me, a national policy that says "no gays allowed" should be treated in a similar way to a policy that says "no blacks allowed." If people disagree about that, I am curious why.
Similarly, someone else said
, "I wonder if there would be so much vitriol if the reason he was denied his Eagle Badge was because he was an atheist."
This seems to be making a very similar point to the one I was making in my deleted comment. I'm used to gays and atheists being discriminated against in America, but I think it is useful to talk about the history of such discrimination in American as it has been applied to other groups. I think that recognizing that we used to have these kind of policies aimed at blacks and Jews, among other groups, and have basically universally agreed that was a bad thing, should help to indicate that it is wrong when done to gay people as well.
A particular reason I think the analogy I used is helpful is that it raises the question of whether there is anything
that the Boy Scouts could do that would cause people to sever their relationship. For some people, maybe the answer is no, that they would never give up on the Boy Scouts, and that they would always want to maintain their relationship and work to change things from the inside. I suspect for other people, there is some line that the Boy Scouts could cross that would be so objectionable that it would be better to stop affiliating with an organization that would do such a thing. If the kind of blatant racism of saying "no blacks allowed" might be enough to cause people to end their relationship (and I hope it would), my question then is why the kind of intolerance of a national policy that says "no gays allowed" is different.
To me, drawing a comparison between a policy that bans gays and previous policies by other groups banning blacks is both an apt comparison, and should be acceptable at Metafilter. I would be curious to hear other people's thoughts about this.