Re: DSM: public school prisons, and agreeing with people


isamom@mindspring.com
Sun, 19 Nov 2000 14:29:19 -0600


It is possible to have a respectful, yet intense, difference of
> opinion, but not if people cry foul at the style, as opposed to the
> substance, of others' arguments.

If it's stylistic to be sarcastic and vague then I'll cry foul until the
cows come home. Pointing this out can contribute to a respectful,
difference of opinion, tweeking up the intense level all the more. It's
just a lot easier to do when the subject matter is clearly articulated. Is
that o.k. with you dad (smile)?
Reeny

> From: bsmith@coin.org (Bruce Smith)
> Reply-To: discuss-sudbury-model@aramis.sudval.org
> Date: Sun, 19 Nov 2000 11:30:14 -0700
> To: discuss-sudbury-model@aramis.sudval.org
> Subject: DSM: public school prisons, and agreeing with people
>
> My comments on these recent sharp exchanges...
>
> I would suggest that the appropriateness of comments is relative to a
> discussion's purpose and audience. If, for example, the purpose is PR and
> the audience is very new to the Sudbury philosophy, then I typically try to
> avoid excessively sharp comments or assaults on traditional schooling.
>
> If, on the other hand, a discussion's purpose is open dialogue between
> people who choose to explore more deeply the implications of Sudbury, then
> I say that it can only _be_ an open dialogue when people can freely share
> their true opinions without being blasted for doing so. I do not view a
> forceful, critical argument as a "tirade" until it becomes overly redundant
> and personal. In fact, I find Dawn's directness and confidence admirable,
> not offensive, especially when compared to the comments of those who make
> assumptions and offer unsolicited advice about the way she expresses
> herself.
>
> People who take things too personally, who see condescension at every turn;
> people too afraid of offending someone, or mired in getting beyond
> attack-and-defend, right-and-wrong...these people contribute significantly
> less to fruitful discussion than do people who simply put their honest,
> passionate opinions right out there, without hiding behind flippant
> sarcasm, awkward attempts at humor, or apologies about their potentially
> useless ideas.
>
> After all, what do we want? A clash and mix, an electric exchange, of
> swirling ideas that gets us somewhere? Or would we rather qualify, dilute
> and compromise our beliefs in order to make sure nobody's feelings get
> hurt? It is possible to have a respectful, yet intense, difference of
> opinion, but not if people cry foul at the style, as opposed to the
> substance, of others' arguments.
>
>
> Bruce
>
>
> ------------------------------
>
> "Education is identical with helping the child realize his potentialities.
> The opposite of education is manipulation, which is based on the absence of
> faith in the growth of potentialities, and on the conviction that a child
> will be right only if the adults put into him what is desirable and
> suppress what seems to be undesirable. There is no need of faith in the
> robot, since there is no life in it either."
>
> Erich Fromm, _The Art of Loving_
>
>



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