America would be better if........

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JuLeah - posted on 07/04/2011

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These are such easy words to speak if you are white, middle class or better, straight, main stream religion .....These are the words spoken by bigots ... honor diversity as long as you are just like us ....



No - this is NOT America ... China, maybe but not my country



It's like a large kitchen, right? Stocked with everything you could ever need to make any dish you might ever wish to eat .... You don't need, for your creation, all the ingredients available.



If you are making pizza, you might not need brussel sprouts, but there is no reason to toss them out of the kitchen, make them illegal, shoot them, deport them, or pass laws forcing the brussel sprouts to dress like pepperoni.



If you don't want the brussel sprouts, don't eat them.



Their existence in the kitchen won't destroy your pizza, or your marriage.



Simply don't eat them. Eat your pizza and let the folks who like brussel sprouts have them for their creation.



A million ingredients, all with flavor, all with purpose, all with value, all important to someone’s dinner.... America



And, but, until brussle sprouts have the same civil liberties as pepperoni, until they have the same rights afforded all other ingredients, we will continue to advocate, to march, to protest …..



And the youth, our future, will be taught to pick up the torch and continue on from where we fell ….



For each generation is called upon to redefine what America means … what freedom means … and each generation is called upon to create their vision.



When we founded this nation, freedom included the idea of one human owning another. Subsequent generations redefined the concept and slavery was abolished.



Future generations defined freedom to include all citizens having a voice; and women got the vote.



The civil rights movement would never have happened had our schools adopted the philosophy outlined in the above article.



No, that is not my country … because that is not freedom

Mrs. - posted on 07/05/2011

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"Why is it controlling to suggest an idea can be discussed without knowing the author?"

Sure you can suggest that. However, you were insisting that it is not a valid debating point to bring in the author's bias, or consider the source.

It's kinda like this:

Person A- "Jenny told me that the world is flat and I think she makes some great points"

Person B - "Well, Jenny is a known liar. Yesterday, she told me my eyes were blue and they are brown."

Person A- That shouldn't matter, I still think she make some good points. In fact, I would like to debate those points and not consider where I got them from. Don't bring up Jenny.

Person B- Well, that seems a bit limiting considering Jenny is your only source. Jenny is a weak source.

Person A - Then you don't know how to debate a subject.

And so on.

Becky - posted on 07/05/2011

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I thought he sounded incredibly ethnocentric. (I think that's the right word.) There is no "American culture." America is made up of many different cultures. Some who have been there for generations, some who have just arrived. Each one brings something unique and special to the mix. But he just wants to deny the uniqueness of everyone's culture and force everyone into the same mold based on his idea of what being American is. I don't see how that brings about better understanding or more tolerance or acceptance. All it does is lead us to believe that differences are bad, that anyone who is different needs to be shunned, or forced to assimilate. Kind of sounds almost like a cult to me! Yes, there are differences that cause conflict, but the answer is not to just get rid of those differences. The answer is to figure out how to get past our differences, to live together in spite of them, and to appreciate the things that make us unique.
And when he says there should be no celebration of any holidays except those that are American holidays - 2 of the major American holidays are "Christian" holidays. So essentially, he is saying, if you are Christian, enjoy your holiday celebrations. But if you're not, sorry, you're SOL. We don't want you celebrating your heathen holidays.

Lady Heather - posted on 07/04/2011

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Sex ed needs to be taught at all ages. You wouldn't teach a kid how to read and write and then never mention reading and writing again. Education needs to be constant because people forget shit. Hell, how much do kids forget over summer vacation? I wouldn't expect a 17 year old to remember everything they learned in sex ed 7 years prior.

Isobel - posted on 07/04/2011

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climate change is the new word for global warming, because the term global warming was misleading. While the atmosphere is indeed getting slowly "warmer" regions are actually EXPERIENCING more extreme and violent weather patterns.

They are one and the same thing.

and YES!!! sex ed belongs in EVERY school! My god, how many teenagers do you want to die from aids and get pregnant at 14?

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√v^√v^√♥ - posted on 07/05/2011

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Quit trolling Dana, you've been following me around since our first fight it seems by posting nothing more than a Hmm or Yeah here and there just to keep track of me.

I'm sorry you guys just don't get it and are fighting ME so much on this. Truly sorry

[deleted account]

No one said it's not possible, we're just saying you don't get to dictate that. Why are you being so difficult? Why can't you understand that YOU don't get to make the rules, and that a discussion/debate will take many twitsts and turns. Go with the flow.....stop stressing or trying to force things in the direction YOU THINK they should go. You don't get to tell another person how to think, or what to comment, and IF you do want to insist on certain things then be prepared for the debate to go nowhere fast. HA! Sorta like now!

I swear you just like to cause shit. Seriously, what's your deal?

√v^√v^√♥ - posted on 07/05/2011

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So....... it doesn't mean that Jenny might be wrong or right, and one doesn't actually have to know the author or include them in a debate in order to debate

but for whatever reason we, in this conversation, HAVE to talk about Jenny......... makes no sense. Absolutely no sense.

If it can be done without, why can't we?

Who are you to say that it's wrong that we can't?

Mrs. - posted on 07/05/2011

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"This is an idea. A theory. A 'what if' scenario.

Therefore, knowing who the author is has no merit. "

Who says? You?

What if, many people feel that "what if" scenarios and how they feel about them really have a lot to do with who is offering or authoring the scenario?


Sure it doesn't mean Jenny might be wrong about this one thing...but I'd sure as hell like to know if this idea came from her before I went off repeating it as a truth.

I don't think it shows a flaw in your logic if you talk about the source's character, it has a lot to do with acceptance of ideas/sharing to consider who is proposing them.

√v^√v^√♥ - posted on 07/05/2011

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We're not debating facts though, like the Person A/B scenario you presented.



This is an idea. A theory. A 'what if' scenario.



Therefore, knowing who the author is has no merit.

Trying to bring his other thoughts on other subjects in has no merit.

Trying to decipher/argue whether or not he's been wrong/right in the past has no merit.

It doesn't matter.



And well, by your Person A/B scenario - even IF Jenny was a nitwit and a liar most of the time....... it doesn't mean that Jenny is wrong and a liar about this 1 thing.





Which is why I was saying lets forget the author and just discuss the idea. It doesn't mean we have to know all about this guy in order to like or hate this idea. His relevence in this is actually nonrelevent.



Because of this, it is a logical fallacy to talk about his character in this debate. It has no merit. No useage here. Therefore, it's just a character attack and nothing more.

Rosie - posted on 07/05/2011

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whose american values would we be using? yours or mine, or my neighbors? everyone has a different opinion of what it is to "be" an american.

i don't think your god exists, so no we were not created by the same god. we are all equal because we are the same, we started out life the same, and then those differences that you (in general) seem to think aren't so important kick in and are what makes each one of us unique. why should i care about other peoples children you ask? because it's the noble and right thing to do. i don't need your god to believe that, or act that way.

√v^√v^√♥ - posted on 07/05/2011

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if you believe in the creator, usually you also believe that the creator gave you life, but does not govern that life and what you do in it. that power is yours and what you do with it is of your free will.



she's just saying that the power of free will comes from the creator, whereas you said your power of free will came from your parents. they too, do not still govern you right? they let you go at 18. well, a creator like she is talking about lets go at the point of creation.



therefore, there is no contradiction in her statement

Jennifer - posted on 07/05/2011

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Those on the right do not see everyone as different. That is significant. We see people as people first and foremost, not color, creed, religion. I don't demand that people be like me, only that if you want a true and happy America that we should all work to share American values not live just as I do. The reason it is important to believe that something other than just your parents created you is because that gives us equality. We are all created by the same God and equal. If it's just our parents that think we're great, why should they care about other people's children?
Educating about our social differences is not the job of the school, that's the parents job. Teaching our kids that who you are "identity politics" is determined by genetics -skin color, sexual orientation, whatever, is not the American way.

Rosie - posted on 07/05/2011

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your statement is a bit contradictory jennifer. we can govern ourselves, and then in the same breath state we are given these rights by our creator. i believe my creator was my mother and bio-dad. someone else may believe their creator was natures energy, and so on. EVERYONE is different and those on the right seem to not accept that, they demand they change to be like them, and follow their rules.

i do have to say i do agree with focusing more on what we have in common. but educating about our differences and seeing the uncommon differences and accepting them just as readily as we accept the more common ones-like a different hair color.

Jennifer - posted on 07/05/2011

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In order for society to function it has to have a culture. Of course there is an American culture. It is slowly being disbanded by the left and that's too bad because it's a really great one. Believes in the equality of all men and right of men to govern themselves. It believes that men are free and given inalienable rights by our Creator. It's not about food, or music, or opinions, it's about VALUES and creating a society where we can look at each other and see more of what we have in common than what is different. A society like that is more respectful and peaceful.



FROM MANY - ONE! Beautiful....

√v^√v^√♥ - posted on 07/05/2011

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Why is it controlling to suggest an idea can be discussed without knowing the author?

[deleted account]

A debate going off topic is different than a debate going in a different direction but still pertaining to the original post. I HATE it when anyone dictates what, where and when we can talk about something. These debates have a natural progression.....they will run their course. Why fight it?

√v^√v^√♥ - posted on 07/05/2011

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Aww, it was cute. Can't remember. Someone hated rice cereal as much as you hate spanking. It was funny

√v^√v^√♥ - posted on 07/05/2011

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Why is it controlling to suggest an idea can be discussed without knowing the author?

[deleted account]

"Dana..... dana dana dana. Did you see the thread the other day where someone said 'If Dana is the anti-spanking mom, then I'm the anti-rice cereal mom?' "

What? Huh? What thread, where? I have no idea what you're talking about.

Mrs. - posted on 07/05/2011

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If the source is unbelievably bias, it is more than okay to question their ideas.



It is why many people do not trust getting their news, or opinions offered from a place like Fox News.



What is with all the trying to control what one can and can't say about the source of the article? If the source of the article is worth his salt, it should be easy to defend his biased stance. So, go forward and debate it...unless you are finding it hard to defend the author's bias?

√v^√v^√♥ - posted on 07/05/2011

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Ask Tiffany again to clarify on what she meant then :)



"Kids put too much into being popular and not enough into what really matters."

√v^√v^√♥ - posted on 07/05/2011

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Dana..... dana dana dana. Did you see the thread the other day where someone said 'If Dana is the anti-spanking mom, then I'm the anti-rice cereal mom?' It was cute. Well, note me as the anti-logical fallacy mom lol

People are going off topic. It's not a natural flow. It's not proper to attack the author of an article when your trying to just talk about whether 1 idea is good or bad. We're not voting this guy for presidency. I just wanted to talk about the article. It doesn't even make any sense, logically, to start attacking him.

Like the Hitler comment. Yes, you can think 1 peice of what Hitler said was good. You don't have to agree that he was good though. You don't have to agree with all of him. That's what I was trying to point out - that there is absolutely no need to bring the author into the discussion. Simply induct what you can from the article and discuss it.

Lady Heather - posted on 07/05/2011

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Also not sure if you should be answering on behalf of someone else because we can't be sure you actually know what she meant. Apparently you and I both read it two different ways so perhaps we should let Tiffany respond.

Lady Heather - posted on 07/05/2011

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Okay, so we agree that some kids focus a lot on being popular. If it can't be solved, I don't know why it would be brought up in the first place. Either being less "PC" will help or one sentence had nothing to do with the other and it is all nonsensical.

√v^√v^√♥ - posted on 07/05/2011

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Heather, Tiffany said kids put too much into being popular. Basically, that she doesn't think they should be focusing so much on popularity. That they need to focus on better things, things that matter much more than popularity. She didn't mention solving popularity issues. You two are in fact agreeing.

Lady Heather - posted on 07/05/2011

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I'm not sure if this would solve any popularity issues Tiffany. My high school's clubs were all based on intellectual and athletic pursuits. We didn't have social clubs like the ones he talks about (though I wish we did). Didn't matter a tick. If you were on the basketball team you were cool and if you were a band nerd like me, you were not.

The equality thing does work, but it's not through ignoring differences and making everyone appear the same. I had this class in Grade 12 called Comparative Civilizations. The teacher was one of the best I ever had. Good old BJ. The first day we walked in there he was like "I don't want any crap in here about so-and-so not talking to this person or that person or I have to sit with this person all the time or blah blah blah. In my classroom we all respect each other and care about each other and that's just the way it is so get used to it." Then he set us up so we were sitting in a circle so we could all see each other and interact. Best class ever and it even spilled over into the rest of our time at school. The popular kids and the nerds and outcasts in that class actually got to know each other.

But here's the kicker - it was comparative civ. So obviously discussion of different cultures is kind of going to come up. We all took a turn sharing our own family history and talking about our own customs and rituals. It was really interesting. One girl from a local First Nation did this smoke ceremony with us and it ends with every single person in the circle hugging everyone else. It was like therapy. Really cool. I took that one back to my vocal jazz group. We did a little ceremony before all our performances and we wiped the floor with the competition every time. Ha.

We can be equal and still be different. I've seen it work. Fuck, I wish I'd remembered that before. Haha. I said fuck again. IDIOT.

Kate CP - posted on 07/05/2011

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My thoughts are this is horrendous. Especially this part:
"... No more semesters will be devoted to condom wearing and teaching you to regard sexual relations as only or primarily a health issue..."

I have so many issues with that statement I don't even know where to start. :/

[deleted account]

While he may be taking it to the extremes on somethings, I have to agree with him. We as a country have gotten far to PC for our own good. My son isn't learning half of what I learned in school when I was his age (and that was only 19yrs ago). Kids put too much into being popular and not enough into what really matters.

Jenni - posted on 07/05/2011

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It appears Mr. Prager would wish to sweep diversity under the rug. That way we can all appear as the same rug, of course we would still have the diversity of the different body shapes and arrangements that cause bumps and rifts in that rug.



Accepting diversity isn't ignoring it becase some ignorant, bigots can't stand the sight of it. So what he's suggesting is "Hey guys, just ignore it and think of them all as Americans, as people."



No, we need to stop being prejudice, bigoty assholes and just accept that people ARE different and we all don't fit snuggly in the box that is "American". (Or Canadian, in my case). Be proud that our people are so diverse of culture, views, colour, race, religion, sexual orientation etc. Be proud of the tapestry that is and always has been North America.



I love hearing different languages, seeing different dress, smelling and eating different foods, learning about different customs, hearing differences of opinions... I would not have those things masked and forget them because there are commie assholes who would wish those 'ugly' things covered up so they don't have to look at it.

[deleted account]

"Wouldn't the world be a better place if this is what people saw when they looked at each other."



Yes, but that won't happen by ignoring diversity. We need to embrace, encourage and celebrate our differences. ;)

Elizabeth - posted on 07/04/2011

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Okay.................

So I finished reading the article and mentally applauded then when to the posts and ...............wait, no, that's not what I read. So I reread the article and back to some more posts. I still feel the same.

These words struck a chord with me, and it was one of harmony not of discord as others have heard. I do wish to honestly debate this, but I hubby's calling so I'll have to come back but I do wish to end with a quote from the speech. "The only identity I care about, the only one this school will recognize, is your individual identity -- your character, your scholarship, your humanity."

Wouldn't the world be a better place if this is what people saw when they looked at each other.

Mrs. - posted on 07/04/2011

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I read the article first, then looked to see who wrote it. By reading it, about a quarter of the way through, I realized it was some kind of right wing propaganda. By the time I got to the part about disbanding support groups for gay teens, I added nut job Christian to the right wing propaganda assertion.

After that, I looked up at the header and saw the guy's headshot....then I wished I had just looked at the headshot first and not had to read the article. The headshot alone says, I am a right wing Christian nut who will at some time, if I gain enough notoriety, be found doing something inappropriate with someone inappropriate in a bathroom stall/on Twitter/in a HoJo. Seriously, if I had to cast the above role by head shot alone, he would be on the top of the list I'd want to see at that audition...

However, headshot aside, I figured out he was an idiot by reading his words alone...then I judged his website and picture after.

Amanda - posted on 07/04/2011

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Other than the idea of English language learning, a lot of these ideas would probably assist students in REALLY learning.

Krista - posted on 07/04/2011

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Jeez, Nichole...this is an informal debating group, not the Oxford debate team.

We don't have moderators, nor is anybody keeping score.

It's one thing to ask that people stay on-topic. But it's really quite ridiculous to stamp your foot and throw a fit when people don't follow the precise rules of debate (rules that you are only throwing out AFTER the fact, as you go along, I might add.)

Tara - posted on 07/04/2011

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I didn't and still don't know who he is...
But what I thought about when I read the article was how very rigid and right wing it seemed.
It came across to me as someone who really has no idea what causes societies ills and sees uniforms and banning any kind of community within the school for those of any kind of minority or having any desire to belong to a group of similar people, whether that is because they are from Somalia and want to join the afterschool "cook ethnic Somali dishes for your family" group or whether they are transgender teens wanting to join the alternatively sexually oriented group.
He just seems really dictator like to me.
I don't agree with much of anything in the article, except maybe the teaching school in English and having second languages taught in school.

[deleted account]

Nichole, unfortunately you cannot force a debate to stay within YOUR parameters. Debates have their own natural course, and in my opinion, there's absolutely nothing wrong with the ladies backing their opinions with research. Research into who the author is.

This debate is progressing quite naturally as far as I'm concerned and just because you don't want people to know who he is, doesn't mean it's irrelevant for them to argue that point.

Those are my two cents...

Isobel - posted on 07/04/2011

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Yes...before I looked up Prager (and I assure you I had NEVER heard of him before) I could still have read between those lines and recognize it for the right wing propaganda, minorities should shut up and be grateful bullshit.

There's my opinion of the article. The article alone and nothing to do with the writer (although LATER when I did look him up...my suspicions were confirmed ;P)

√v^√v^√♥ - posted on 07/04/2011

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No, but we could talk about what would be better to unite people then. Since some disagree with this article :)

Lady Heather - posted on 07/04/2011

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Well I already did that in my original postings before the curiosity set in. It's fair to say my original statement was entirely unbiased and solely based on the content of the speech because I had no idea who he was. The debate was still never going anywhere because there are just some fundamental disagreements that are a matter of opinion. Those sorts of arguments can never be settled.

√v^√v^√♥ - posted on 07/04/2011

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You can discuss 1 peice of information and that peice only. Even if I did agree with some heartwarming things said by Hitler, it does not mean I agree with him nor the rest of his talks. That being said, that is exactly what I am talking about. Just discussing this. Not the whole package, person who wrote it and what else he wrote.... just this article as a theory.

Lady Heather - posted on 07/04/2011

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I sent him an email! I hope I get a response soon. The suspense is killing me.

Perhaps I am just way too curious for proper debate.

Isobel - posted on 07/04/2011

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I'm pretty sure I could find some heartwarming and motivational stuff by Hitler and not tell you who wrote it...it would be interesting to see if you agree with him without questioning the source as well.

JuLeah - posted on 07/04/2011

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Nichole .. hate is hate, fear is fear .... I was not aware of who wrote this article. I mean, I had not heard of him before and had no prior opinion. But, upon reading, I developed the opinion that it was written by a bigot.



Many people that don't want to be accused of such things make great effort to sound logical, and open, and welcoming to all ... I have seen slavery discussed in these terms ... and people who want to believe in the message go along, people who are not using their critical reasoning skills (reading between the lines) get sucked in .....



A debate is about bringing into the light all points of view ... that this author is a bigot, is a valid point to raise and evident by his own words ...



What I am not really wrapping my mind around is why you seem to think he is a good idea?

Lady Heather - posted on 07/04/2011

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Can I attack him for having ideas that won't work and saying things in the article that make him sound like a douchebag? Is it better to say he sounds like a douchebag than just saying he is one?

See, I never took a debate class in high school so I don't know how to play this game.

√v^√v^√♥ - posted on 07/04/2011

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Logical fallacy: Attacking the person

The person presenting an argument is attacked instead of the argument itself.

This is an inappropriate way to have a discussion because you aren't just talking about the discussion anymore.. you're attacking the author/speaker/writer whatever. Which is what your starting to do. It's not a debate anymore, it's a fallacy and well that isn't even what I wanted to discuss is this guys character. I wanted to discuss this as a theory by its self.

Deduct whatever you want from the article but this discussion should be based solely on this article and what we deduct from it. Not by researching the author.

Ez - posted on 07/04/2011

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The article made me gag :-/

He may have a valid point or two (I agree that kids attending American schools DO need to be fluent in English, and lessons should not be taught in a second language), but any shred of relevance is overridden by his blatant bigotry.

Lady Heather - posted on 07/04/2011

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Well, considering I disagreed with him before I had even the slightest clue who he was, I don't think it would have made a difference. Just would have made it harder to find out who I was disagreeing with. Ha.

I just have this natural tendency to want to learn more when I encounter something new. Still can't find his pledge stance anywhere. I might have to email him.

Isobel - posted on 07/04/2011

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How can you discuss the article without discussing the man it is about and whether or not it is true???

√v^√v^√♥ - posted on 07/04/2011

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Here we go...... discussions over. I'm sorry you don't see how going off about this guy is going to NOT help our discussion.

Perhaps at a later time I will simply post the article and not who wrote it, and have a better shot at just dicussing the article alone

Isobel - posted on 07/04/2011

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Nichole...have you read anything about Prager??? He's a bible thumping bigot. I didn't get to read the "inside" scoop on his website cause I'm not going to open myself up to receiving the kind of stuff I know he would send me, BUT I got a clear enough view of him from his home page to see that he is NEVER going to lessen Christianity's grip on schools NEVER.



so essentially...yes different eyes indeed (mine can read between the lines)



http://www.dennisprager.com/



http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dennis_Prag...

Lady Heather - posted on 07/04/2011

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I already told you. You said he's all for discussing social differences in clubs outside of school and he says they are narcissistic.



I don't care for debate rules. I don't think I've called anyone a name except Mr. Prager and I'm sure he wouldn't care about my opinion of him just like I don't care about his opinion of me. I think I've made my points pretty well without consulting the rule book. A lot of people seem to agree as I've had many positive ratings given. Sometimes I get a little carried away with my language when I am passionate about something, but I still don't feel like I haven't made grown up points and participated in the debate properly. And I don't see why it is so wrong for me to be interested in the guy and want to know more. Kind of a tease to just show me one article and say I can't read anything else to learn more of his perspective on the world.



Anyways, to return to the subject of the speech the most narcissistic people I ever met were those who were heavily involved in intellectual pursuits. You want to talk narcissism? Try being a musician or a dancer or hanging out with some crazy science nerd who thinks he has all the answers like my cousin. That kid is so full of himself it makes me want to puke.

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