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General advice for newcomers to Free Republic

Posted on 10/26/2010 2:39:17 PM PDT by MalPearce

Speaking as a Brit who's just joined...


TOPICS: Free Republic Policy/Q&A
KEYWORDS: sionnsar; sniff; zot
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Hi all,

I'm still a bit of a noob here, but I have noticed that several of the threads I've read through go a little bit like this:

PERSON A: I think A,B,C,D,E,F and G and I'm a conservative.

PERSON B: I think A,B,C,D,E,F and I disagree with you on G and I'm also a conservative.

PERSON A: No you're not a conservative because you don't agree with G.

JIM ROBINSON: Yup.

Okay, I've seen the posts by Jim about what is and isn't conservative and it's his site and his perogative to do so. I'm not disputing that.

But I just wondered, before I get banned in my first week for doing something like playing Devil's Advocate in a conversation (which I have done on other forums) I thought it prudent to ask:

What is the tipping point between someone expressing a different or contrary or contraversial YET STILL VALID point of view here, and crossing the line to a point that'll get you banned?

I'm asking because IMO there's a fundamental difference between arguing a point of POLICY (which requires a sense of pragmatism as well as ideology) and arguing over IDEOLOGY (where it's appropriate to maintain an absolute position).

1 posted on 10/26/2010 2:39:19 PM PDT by MalPearce
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To: MalPearce

You are unlikely to get banned for discussing policy issues as long as you are not offensive, do not use profanity, do not engage in personal attacks, are not racist, and do not advocate violence.


2 posted on 10/26/2010 2:42:18 PM PDT by MIchaelTArchangel (Obama makes me miss Jimmah Cahtah!)
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To: MalPearce

Play with matches, do you? JK, welcome to Freeperville!


3 posted on 10/26/2010 2:42:23 PM PDT by texas_mrs
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To: MalPearce

Enjoy your stay.

IBTZ.


4 posted on 10/26/2010 2:42:30 PM PDT by Islander7 (If you want to anger conservatives, lie to them. If you want to anger liberals, tell them the truth.)
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To: MalPearce

Nice flag!


5 posted on 10/26/2010 2:42:47 PM PDT by gunnyg (WE ARE BEHIND "ENEMY WITHIN" LINES, SURROUNDED, Our 'Novembers' Are Gone,,,So Few Can "grok" It.)
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To: MalPearce

My WAG is — you’ll be given a lot less benefit of the doubt as a 3-day-old Brit than a 3-day-old American.

Perhaps.

So maybe you should just read and nod and post the occasional “I say old chap” for a while.

I defer to Mr. Robinson.


6 posted on 10/26/2010 2:42:59 PM PDT by workerbee (We're not scared, Maobama -- we're pissed off!)
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To: MalPearce
"What is the tipping point between someone expressing a different or contrary or contraversial YET STILL VALID point of view here, and crossing the line to a point that'll get you banned?"

We all agree on Article I Section 8 of the US Constitution and the 10th Amendment. If you cannot see eye to eye with us on that then we'll have to remind you Red Coats of 1776!

7 posted on 10/26/2010 2:43:44 PM PDT by avacado
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To: MalPearce

Say, you’re not the guy with bacon fan, are you?


8 posted on 10/26/2010 2:43:52 PM PDT by workerbee (We're not scared, Maobama -- we're pissed off!)
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To: MalPearce

Thou shalt worship the lunatic Orly Taitz and all her attributes.

Otherwise thou art a troll most foul!

Further thou shalt worship Sarah Palin and agree that she
is at least equal to Jesus and thou shalt cheerlead for
her at every opportunity, otherwise thou art a troll most foul!


9 posted on 10/26/2010 2:43:55 PM PDT by humblegunner (Pablo is very wily)
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To: MalPearce

Goodness, what hard questions!! Just don’t EVER abuse kitties. Remember that all the power lies with Jim Thompson. Thailand can be very controversial. Share your best election day party recipes with all. Read all posts on a thread before posting your own comment. Do not call other FReepers stupid. Pictures are helpful. If you introduce “controversial” threads frequently, you risk being cast out as a troll. Welcome to FReeRepublic.


10 posted on 10/26/2010 2:44:26 PM PDT by NEMDF
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To: MalPearce

Do not start a topic and sit back without answering responses, avoid name calling, think before clicking “post”.

Welcome


11 posted on 10/26/2010 2:44:27 PM PDT by pennboricua
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To: MalPearce

Honest, intellectual discussion is welcomed here - “Trolls” [those who purposely mis-represent themselves] are NOT abided.

Also, no profanity or personal attacks on other Freepers ...


12 posted on 10/26/2010 2:44:36 PM PDT by Lmo56 (</i><p>)
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To: MalPearce

That’s facinating, quite a first effort.

Please write more and include points G through Z.


13 posted on 10/26/2010 2:44:44 PM PDT by Williams (It's the policies, stupid.)
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To: MalPearce

If you where a real conservative, you wouldn’t have to ask.

Frankly, you sound like a whiny liberal to me.


14 posted on 10/26/2010 2:44:52 PM PDT by Reagan Man ("In this present crisis, government is not the solution to our problem; government is the problem.")
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To: humblegunner

BWAHAHAHAHA !!!!!

That made me choke on my own spit !


15 posted on 10/26/2010 2:45:14 PM PDT by Jacktown
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To: MalPearce
"I'm still a bit of a noob here..."

Yeah, probably missed the thing about vanities.

Having an opinion that isn't "conservative" generally isn't enough to get you banned. That sort of rigorous conformism isn't demanded here.

Acting like you belong on Democratic Underground is another story.

16 posted on 10/26/2010 2:45:15 PM PDT by mlo
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To: MalPearce
What is the tipping point between someone expressing a different or contrary or contraversial YET STILL VALID point of view here, and crossing the line to a point that'll get you banned?

If you misspell "controversial," you will get banned.

17 posted on 10/26/2010 2:45:15 PM PDT by TruthShallSetYouFree (If not for the double standard, liberals would have no standards at all.e)
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To: MalPearce

I think A,B,C,D,E,F and G and I’m a conservative.


18 posted on 10/26/2010 2:45:49 PM PDT by mdittmar (i)
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To: avacado
We all agree on Article I Section 8 of the US Constitution and the 10th Amendment.

No we don't.

19 posted on 10/26/2010 2:45:54 PM PDT by Huck (Antifederalist BRUTUS should be required reading.)
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To: MalPearce
I think if you follow the rules regarding personal attacks, profanity, racism, etc. you'll be fine. I've been here a little while (ok, 11 years, lol) and have found that folks who comport themselves as ladies and gentlemen don't have any problems.

During that time, I can assure you I've had countless disagreements with many, and have been persuaded to change my views by some, and would like to think I've changed other's views. This is a forum for both free speech and polite discourse. I feel free to exercise both at any time.

Welcome to FR!

20 posted on 10/26/2010 2:46:24 PM PDT by Joe 6-pack (Que me amat, amet et canem meum)
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To: MalPearce

Infants who want to remain don’t post vanities about themselves.

Lay low, limit your comments to threads where you can add something interesting, and not “play devil’s advocate”.

The site mission as I see it is not to entertain you (or me). So don’t think of it as your intellectual/political playground.


21 posted on 10/26/2010 2:47:38 PM PDT by Atlas Sneezed ("Nobody tell Barack Obama what number comes after a trillion" --S.P.)
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To: TruthShallSetYouFree
If you misspell "controversial," you will get banned.

And its "aluminum", NOT "aluminium" ...

22 posted on 10/26/2010 2:47:38 PM PDT by Lmo56 (</i><p>)
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To: MalPearce

There are a fair number of big gov conservatives. For example, GW Bush who along with a Republican House and Senate, called himself a ‘Compassionate’ conservative, and they went on to out spend LBJ.

So, it’s kind of messy. Nothing to be done about it, it’s the way it is.


23 posted on 10/26/2010 2:48:00 PM PDT by Leisler (They always lie, so much and for so long, that they no longer know what about.)
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To: MalPearce
Welcome, but it sounds like you're trying to pick a fight right out of the gate. Not all conservatives agree on all points. For example, some people think Obama is a stupid American hating marxist. Others think he is a cunningly evil American hating marxist. See, we can agree to disagree.

As far as I'm concerned, ideology and even religion are open to argument and I've seen plenty of it here on this site.

24 posted on 10/26/2010 2:48:04 PM PDT by Teotwawki (To Him be the glory throughout all generations.)
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To: MalPearce

I see one error you have made...you failed to place this vanity in Breaking News.


25 posted on 10/26/2010 2:48:34 PM PDT by Dog
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To: MalPearce
Don't push lefty, liberal crap and you'll live.

Something to read and take seriously.

Statement by the founder of Free Republic

26 posted on 10/26/2010 2:48:38 PM PDT by DJ MacWoW (If Bam is the answer, the question was stupid.)
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To: MalPearce

We on this forum have disagreements when it comes to personalities but with core beliefs....not so much.

What concerning the conservative agenda do you disagree with?


27 posted on 10/26/2010 2:48:48 PM PDT by traderrob6
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To: MalPearce

There are liberals, leftist, athiest and downright buttheads that have been on this forum for years without getting banned, it’s all about your manners.


28 posted on 10/26/2010 2:49:14 PM PDT by eastforker (Visit me at http://www.eastforker.com)
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To: MalPearce

Example:

Even the most profoundly pro-God, pro-life, pro-family, pro-defense people in the United Kingdom have real issues engaging fully with the American Right in the gun control debate. It’s not ideological; it’s environmental.

Very few Brits grow up in an environment where guns and the right to keep and bear them and use them RESPONSIBLY are part and parcel of everyday life.

If asked to name three famous British gun owners, the average Brit would say Derrick Bird, Michael Ryan and Thomas Hamilton - all three of them are spree killing nutjobs.

Which is a terrible shame because we used to have some really good Olympic shooters as well...

I’m 35 years old, and I’ve never seen an active firearm outside of Police Headquarters (I work for the cops).

It’s not as simple as saying that this lack of exposure to legal firearms is down entirely to leftist policy or left-wing ideology.

Both my grandads had service revolvers from the war and definitely used them to kill. One served in the Far East and the other was at Arnhem.

One of them stoved in the barrel of his revolver, and removed the firing pin so it couldn’t be used, and then put it in a box which went straight into the attic. We didn’t know he had it until he passed on. He’d never talk about it.

The other was a farmer. He had a shotgun which was kept in a locker in a secure room in an outhouse on his farm, purely for pest control - but he wouldn’t allow anyone else near it, and he wouldn’t ever take it into the house. He put the revolver beyond use. With a saw. He said something like, “The shotgun has a purpose. The revolver served its purpose.”

Both of my grandfathers were ready to fight for their families and their country, but both would’ve been utterly appalled if anyone in the family had come home saying “Hey, I’ve got myself a handgun”.

To be honest, even the most hardline right-wing God-fearing pro-life pro-family fiscal conservative in Britain would probably fail to qualify to be a Freeper if being *enthusiastically* pro-gun ownership was one of Jim Robinson’s “three line whips”.


29 posted on 10/26/2010 2:49:31 PM PDT by MalPearce
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To: MalPearce

Let me write your handle down so I can contradict you whenever possible. This will be more fun than riling up the anti O’Donnell people.


30 posted on 10/26/2010 2:51:13 PM PDT by Lazlo in PA ("Forces of Evil" member in good standing)
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To: MalPearce

Rather than trying to play devil’s advocate, why not simply post your sincere opinon or belief on an issue being discussed.

After a few years, when you have exchanges between poster’s that know you, then you can strive for bringing others to common ground by taking a devil’s advocate stance.

Don’t worry about Jim Robinson, just follow his rules on the home page and use the site to discuss conservatism and defending the constitution.

If you want to support or discuss non-conservative issues and political figures, do it elsewhere.


31 posted on 10/26/2010 2:52:00 PM PDT by KC Burke
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To: MIchaelTArchangel

I really don’t know if there is a specific set of rules and/or algorithms that will keep you in good stead here. I don’t agree with a lot of freepers on many points. In fact, I know I don’t agree with the majority on several. I will sometimes pop in to disagree, but I don’t belabour the point, I have managed to remain here for many years. Just one tip, the more you disagree with the majority here, the more courteous one must be...


32 posted on 10/26/2010 2:52:02 PM PDT by Paradox (Democrats new Motto: Vini, Vidi, Lewinski!)
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To: MalPearce

Welcome. You rarely get banned for opinions. Posting porn or anything that approaches. Out. Ron Paul supporters get driven away, made fun of, goaded and then banned. I don’t think that one is fair (or relevant) anymore, but there are enough fanatical Ron Paul types that I can understand it and from what I’ve seen Jim Rob doesn’t let them stay. It’s a conservative site, not a debate league for politics generally, so Democrats, liberals, Clinton supporters, Obama supporters get made fun of, then banned. Being a “devil’s advocate” here means being a jackass. Say what you mean and what you believe. Harrassing moderators gets you banned. There are some conspiracy websites that Drudge links to . . . but here not allowed . . . infowars, etc. This isn’t official, just what I’ve seen over the years.


33 posted on 10/26/2010 2:52:38 PM PDT by November 2010
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To: MalPearce

Self defense is a right. It isn’t open to negotiation.


34 posted on 10/26/2010 2:52:54 PM PDT by DJ MacWoW (If Bam is the answer, the question was stupid.)
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To: MalPearce

Don’t sweat it. We argue with each other all the time. There has been some attempts to lesson the flame wars, but differing opinions still abound. Just read any Sarah Palin thread.

As long as you don’t advocate violence, are racist, or engage in personal attacks on other members, you should be fine.

Oh and watch out for that Lazmataz character. A “character” he/she/it, is. ;)


35 posted on 10/26/2010 2:53:07 PM PDT by AFreeBird
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To: MalPearce

Just have to do it...

Keep the moose away from your sister, or the trouble could be hugh.


36 posted on 10/26/2010 2:53:15 PM PDT by sissyjane (Did you plug the hole yet Daddy????)
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To: MalPearce

There are hot button issues that most American Freepers are well aware of but you would not be acultured to.

So, for example, on a 2nd Amendment thread on gun rights, if you said “you crazy yankees can’t be trusted to own guns”, you’d likely be looking to get the boot. But if you said “I am a Brit, here’s how we deal with things here, could you explain why you think differently”, well I don’t think you’d have a problem.

A lively sane discussion is always welcome, it is mostly when people start insinuating the other side is crazy or extreme that you have problems. This is a thinking persons site, most of us have thought long and hard about our positions. If you respect that, then you will do fine.

You will probably be surprised what you learn here, I know I am continually, just ask why people think the way they do first and that drops the tension a lot.


37 posted on 10/26/2010 2:53:43 PM PDT by DaxtonBrown (HARRY: Money Mob & Influence (See my Expose on Reid on amazon.com written by me!))
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To: MalPearce
But I just wondered, before I get banned in my first week for doing something like playing Devil's Advocate in a conversation (which I have done on other forums) I thought it prudent to ask

Don't play devils advocate until you have earned your chops. Show us you are truly conservative first, then we ENCOURAGE well-reasoned challenges to belief systems. We do not encourage trolling.

38 posted on 10/26/2010 2:53:43 PM PDT by Lazamataz
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To: TruthShallSetYouFree

maybe that’s the british spelling.


39 posted on 10/26/2010 2:55:04 PM PDT by Rio
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To: Monkey Face; Tax-chick

ping


40 posted on 10/26/2010 2:56:07 PM PDT by ColdOne (GOP. Gutless Old Politicians :^)) :0) :{) ;{) :0))
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To: MalPearce
We Yanks promote responsible gun ownership - but in our society [in areas where guns were banned], violent crime actually went UP.

After our Supreme Court ruled in District of Columbia v. Heller for the homeowner, DC's ban on handguns was overturned and violent crime went DOWN ...

41 posted on 10/26/2010 2:56:21 PM PDT by Lmo56 (</i><p>)
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To: MalPearce

Your gun experience makes you (sadly) no different than a lot of Americans.

Answer me this, Mr. Devil’s Advocate — what do you think of the recent happenings in Tower Hamlet?


42 posted on 10/26/2010 2:56:43 PM PDT by workerbee (We're not scared, Maobama -- we're pissed off!)
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To: MalPearce

This may be of help to you:

Statement by the founder of Free Republic:

In our continuing fight for freedom, for America and our constitution and against totalitarianism, socialism, tyranny, terrorism, etc., Free Republic stands firmly on the side of right, i.e., the conservative side. Believing that the best defense is a strong offense, we (myself and those whom I’m trying to attract to FR) support the strategy of taking the fight to the enemy as opposed to allowing the enemy the luxury of conducting their attacks on us at home on their terms and on their schedule.

Therefore, we wholeheartedly support the Bush Doctrine of pre-emptive strikes on known terrorist states and organizations that are believed to present a clear threat to our freedom or national security. We support our military, our troops and our Commander-in-Chief and we oppose turning control of our government back over to the liberals and socialists who favor appeasement, weakness, and subserviency. We do not believe in surrendering to the terrorists as France, Germany, Russia and Spain have done and as Kerry, Kennedy, Clinton and the Democrats, et al, are proposing.

As a conservative site, Free Republic is pro-God, pro-life, pro-family, pro-Constitution, pro-Bill of Rights, pro-gun, pro-limited government, pro-private property rights, pro-limited taxes, pro-capitalism, pro-national defense, pro-freedom, and-pro America. We oppose all forms of liberalism, socialism, fascism, pacifism, totalitarianism, anarchism, government enforced atheism, abortionism, feminism, homosexualism, racism, wacko environmentalism, judicial activism, etc. We also oppose the United Nations or any other world government body that may attempt to impose its will or rule over our sovereign nation and sovereign people. We believe in defending our borders, our constitution and our national sovereignty.

Free Republic is private property. It is not a government project, nor is it funded by government or taxpayer money. We are not a publicly owned entity nor are we an IRS tax-free non-profit organization. We pay all applicable taxes on our income. We are not connected to or funded by any political party, news agency, or any other entity. We sell no merchandise, product or service, and we offer no subscriptions or paid memberships. We accept no paid advertising or promotions. We are funded solely by donations (non tax deductible gifts) from our readers and participants.

We aggressively defend our God-given and first amendment guaranteed rights to free speech, free press, free religion, and freedom of association, as well as our constitutional right to control the use and content of our own personal private property. Despite the wailing of the liberal trolls and other doom & gloom naysayers, we feel no compelling need to allow them a platform to promote their repugnant and obnoxious propaganda from our forum. Free Republic is not a liberal debating society. We are conservative activists dedicated to defending our rights, defending our constitution, defending our republic and defending our traditional American way of life.

Our God-given liberty and freedoms are not negotiable.

May God bless and protect our men and women in uniform fighting for our freedom and may God continue to bless America.

Jim Robinson


43 posted on 10/26/2010 2:57:22 PM PDT by trisham (Zen is not easy. It takes effort to attain nothingness. And then what do you have? Bupkis.)
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To: humblegunner

Ok, I agree with you on the Palin thing but I’m not goin with ya on the Taitz thing. Can I still be a conservative? :-)


44 posted on 10/26/2010 2:57:27 PM PDT by CynicalBear
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To: MalPearce

Think for a minute about the position many of us here in the States are facing with the government takeover of so many aspects of our lives. If the elections next week turn out to be so corrupt and abusive, and we are left with no defense through the Justice Department, and then 0bama gets his civilian army going.... all sounds far-fetched... but now plausible. If we did not have guns... we could be at the complete mercy of a corrupt government. Not to mention that many people keep them just for self-defense, so they do not rely only on the “police” to protect them. It is not just about hunting or sport.


45 posted on 10/26/2010 2:57:53 PM PDT by NEMDF
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To: DJ MacWoW

Heh. :)


46 posted on 10/26/2010 2:58:09 PM PDT by trisham (Zen is not easy. It takes effort to attain nothingness. And then what do you have? Bupkis.)
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To: MalPearce

From this vantage point, it appears that you take much for granted in expecting the continuance of civil society in your country. Social cohesion is unraveling. You’re becoming much more like the United States so far as friction between dissimilar groups. In the United States, the knowledge that any given citizen might well be armed serves as a deterrent. You have no such deterrent.


47 posted on 10/26/2010 2:58:43 PM PDT by RegulatorCountry
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To: MalPearce
Very few Brits grow up in an environment where guns and the right to keep and bear them and use them RESPONSIBLY are part and parcel of everyday life.

That is so sad.....

I’m 35 years old, and I’ve never seen an active firearm outside of Police Headquarters (I work for the cops).

OMG THAT IS TRAGIC!!!!

One of them stoved in the barrel of his revolver, and removed the firing pin so it couldn’t be used, and then put it in a box which went straight into the attic. We didn’t know he had it until he passed on. He’d never talk about it.

The other was a farmer. He had a shotgun which was kept in a locker in a secure room in an outhouse on his farm, purely for pest control - but he wouldn’t allow anyone else near it, and he wouldn’t ever take it into the house. He put the revolver beyond use. With a saw. He said something like, “The shotgun has a purpose. The revolver served its purpose.”


48 posted on 10/26/2010 2:58:53 PM PDT by Lazamataz
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To: CynicalBear

Thou art a troll most foul!


49 posted on 10/26/2010 2:59:00 PM PDT by humblegunner (Pablo is very wily)
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To: MalPearce

Thank you for the thoughtful, courteous post.

I have been posting for nearly a decade under various noms, and I believe I only had one response pulled, and it wasn’t for being disagreeable.

First, newbies (less than a year) are expected to be less cantankerous than veterans. Practically speaking, that means avoiding saying anything personally negative about other posters (gentle ribbing is okay, such as Chet99’s penchant for pit bull stories). NO RACE BAITING. Nothing that makes others think that Mitt Romney is fir to breathe air in the western hemisphere.

The more substantive your replies, the more likely you are to be taken seriously.

Double-entendres are mostly fine, f-bombs (and similar) are not.

Nothing that can be construed as an advertisement.

Vanities are especially risky for newbies.

Don’t post anything that is not allowed (because of legal agreements) on the board.

You will find most of the conflicts have to do with fractures along the line of religious/secularly-oriented types. That leeches into creation/evolution topics. Sometimes there are denominational/Catholic/libertarian secularist spats. It is best not to get too caught up in those right away.

There are also at least three flavors of foreign policy: aggressive in asserting perceived U.S. interests and strong, restrained (less expansive opinion of U.S. interests) and strong, and isolationist. All three despise the U.N. and want us out.

The flavor of conservatism here is full-blooded American. We like guns (it goes back to that War for Independence thing, which hardly qualifies as genuine revolution). We like our government small and decentralized. We are large majority pro-life, small majority no exceptions. None of us like socialized medicine, because we don’t like socialism, period. As President Reagan said, “When you socialize the doctors, you are well on your way to socializing the patients.”

You will also find a wide range of opinion of what is smutty and what is merely clever or bawdy. Some of us get a wider swath as they employ a shtick that includes self-deprecating humor.

NEVER, EVER, EVER TEASE THE VIKING KITTIES!


50 posted on 10/26/2010 2:59:08 PM PDT by Dr. Sivana (There is no salvation in politics)
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