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Saturday, August 23, 2003
What is With People?
By Steven Taylor @ 9:16 am

I just read the following from John Lemon on some trouble he has experienced as a result of the attention he received from the CalPundit “conservatives in academics” discussion. His posts are here and here.

The upshot: some has threatened to “out” him.

This is ludicrous, and while not nearly as bad as what happened to Kate recently, it does make you wonder what’s up with some people. The Internet is a wonderful thing, but while it allows us to encounter interesting and thoughtful people, it also, clearly, increases the odds of running into nuts.

John is anonymous for a variety of reasons. Yes, he has legitimate career concerns (you all can scoff at all the anti-conservative bias in academics all you want, but the truth of the matter is that there are departments where it is a reality, indeed my personal experience is that it is in the vast majority of departments in certain disciplines). Further, just by reading the content of his Blog he clearly wants the opportunity to spout off without having to worry about said sproutings being associated with his academic reputation.

For what it is worth, I struggled with whether or not to be anonymous when I started my blog, and indeed was anonymous for a month or so. And I teach at a university where my conservative views are more considered the norm-this is rather unusual.

In short, I say two things: give Lemon a break, and I hope that he continues to blog.

Filed under: Other Blogs | |Send TrackBack

OUTSIDE THE BELTWAY linked with CREEPS, TROLLS, AND WEIRDOS

7 Comments

  1. Frankly, much of this is Lemon’s own doing. He wanted to assert his POV based on his experiences and standing in the field. If you’re bound and determined to make an argument based on an appeal to personal authority-you should expect to have your own bona fides subject to scrutiny.

    Particularly when much of Lemon’s story has evolved or changed over time. Or appears to be contradictory or anecdotal.

    Comment by JadeGold — Saturday, August 23, 2003 @ 12:20 pm

  2. CREEPS, TROLLS, AND WEIRDOS
    There has been a spate of bad behavior around the blogosphere of late. Flame wars have been around since literally before the invention of the…

    Trackback by OUTSIDE THE BELTWAY — Saturday, August 23, 2003 @ 12:48 pm

  3. JG,

    The issue isn’t that people are scrutinizing Lemon’s assertions. That’s all fine and dandy. But it’s beyond the pale to take quips on blogs beyond the comment sections of blogs. It’s a closed system. It’s not legitimate to go beyond the blog and interfere in people’s personal lives.

    Comment by James Joyner — Saturday, August 23, 2003 @ 12:49 pm

  4. JJ,

    I’ll type more slowly so you might understand.

    Lemon chose to broach this subject. He chose to make assertions-questionable ones- based on his experiences. Nobody arbitrarily decided to ferret out conservative, in-the-closet blogger/profs at evil liberal colleges.

    If one is truly concerned about anonymity beyond one’s blog-one really shouldn’t interject those aspects of one’s personal or professional life one doesn’t wish to invite greater scrutiny.

    Comment by JadeGold — Saturday, August 23, 2003 @ 1:45 pm

  5. Perhaps one ought read more slowly.

    Joyner’s point is that arguing with Lemon’s assertions is perfectly fine, but threatening personal attacks in “real life” is what is problematic.

    Comment by Steven — Saturday, August 23, 2003 @ 1:52 pm

  6. No sh*t. Draw the line at anything beyond a well reasoned argument. Well, maybe some snarky remarks. But geez. Let people be.

    Comment by John — Saturday, August 23, 2003 @ 11:52 pm


  7. Comment by Anonymous — Tuesday, August 10, 2004 @ 2:50 pm

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