Absurdity, Petards, & Commenting Policies on SBC Blogs

“People are free to do with their blogs what they want, but when they begin to apply so-called “guidelines” both inconsistently and unfairly, they should not expect it to go unnoticed nor unchallenged. . . . With their new model (or old model or some model) now firmly in place, Voices may find themselves, as they say, hoisted on their own petard.” (Comment on “Power Plays and Moves to Oppress Dissent in the SBC”)

“Tighter control” through new and improved commenting policies seems to be all the rage these days in certain Southern Baptist and Reformed circles. First, SBC Voices, perhaps the most well-known blog for Southern Baptist news and opinion, instituted new commenting policies on Wednesday afternoon. Of course, those policies were not published until after a well-respected blogger and long-time contributor to Voices had a rather innocuous comment deleted based on the then unpublished policies. Curiously, to be sure, Denny Burk on Thursday linked (here) to a new Kevin DeYoung (“DeYoung, Restless & Reformed”) post (here) about blog comments that was likewise published on Thursday. I just love happy coincidences!

Just to be clear. A blog, be it SBC Voices or From Law to Grace, is not prohibited from instituting standards for blogging and for commenting on said blogs. In fact, there is no constitutional requirement that blogs even allow comments. That’s why the First Amendment is such a great right. It allows us to post material (libel excluded) which we deem appropriate and it allows us to restrict who can come onto our blogs and what they can or cannot say. I would defend the right of any blog owner to implement whatever policies and procedures they so choose. Blog owners, writers, and editors are even free to apply their policies inconsistently and unfairly. There is no First Amendment right for a commenter to post whatever he or she wants and then expect it to be published on a blog which is owned and operated by another. As has become the rallying cry of some as of late, “If you want the freedom to say whatever you want, start your own blog!” Thanks. We have.

However, once those policies and standards for commenting are adopted and published, it will not escape notice when said policies are misapplied or not even applied at all. Less than 24-hours after I made the above comment, a new opinion piece which seems to run afoul of their new commenting policies and standards was published on SBC Voices. In response to Rick Patrick’s post, “Acts 29 and Bad Science Fiction Movies,” I began my comment thusly:

Wow! Now tell us what you really think about Acts 29. First, while I am glad (I’m not sure that’s the right word) that Dave posted your OP, I think by doing so, this illustrates in the clearest way possible the absurdity and hypocrisy of the new commenting guidelines. The irony should be so crystal clear that it will not be lost on many.

While some privately took offense with my characterization, what would give me reason to think that the mere publishing of this post (which some might deem the very first comment on the topic at hand) is itself an illustration of absurdity and hypocrisy? Glad you asked. Here’s the answer. One of the new commenting guidelines rolled out on Wednesday states:

2) Respect People!  Personal attacks and insults will not be permitted. It is one thing for me to say, “I disagree with you.”  It is another to say, “Your idea is stupid,” or even “You are stupid.”   If your comment is designed to insult another person, it is out of bounds. (“Comment Moderation Policies at SBC Voices,” published on March 28, 2012)

While readers of this blog understand that I have profound concerns with Mark Driscoll and Mars Hill (here and here) — and by extension the Acts 29 Network — I was nevertheless flabbergasted with the unnecessary inflammatory rhetoric used in the post to describe — by way of analogy — churches affiliated with Acts 29. After likening Acts 29 churches and pastors to aliens among us (think “Invasion of the Body Snatchers”) — which I thought was clever, funny, and slightly pointed — the post goes on to say:

“Although it is not my intention to incite, this next analogy may do exactly that. When I compare traditional denominations to the existing sovereign nations on earth and liken Acts 29 to a terrorist network, I am certainly not speaking of their functional intent–these are brothers who are truly sharing the gospel–but only of their organizational structure. Just like a terrorist network contains infiltrating cells within a variety of nations while preserving their primary allegiance for the terrorist organization itself, Acts 29 churches appear to enjoy carte blanche in forming their own “denomination without walls. . . .

Just as Muslims embark upon both public holy wars and the more secretive infiltration of cultural subversion, religious denominations are subject to the same threats. While the liberalism a generation ago was a “holy war” fought over inerrancy, today we face the more illusive threat of subversion from within as the Acts 29 Network grows stronger and larger inside of us.” (full post here)

As I shared with Rick on the comment stream at Voices, I think much of his article is spot on. However, the use of inflammatory rhetoric in likening Acts 29, and churches affiliated with the church planting network, to a terroist network “was beyond the pale.” (Although I think the analogy used was a poor one, Rick has since clarified that the language that he used and apologized for the “terrorist metaphor”). It doesn’t matter that it was an analogy (or a metaphor within an analogy). That does not make it any less offensive nor does it somehow exempt the content of the post from the new standard, “Respect People!” Of course, there is one way in which this could fall under an exemption — if the original post is not held to the same high standards of Christian dialogue that commenters are held to. If the OP is not seen as a comment, but rather just an opinion from diverse voices, then I suppose that the “no personal attacks and insults permitted” clause will not be enforced.

I would submit to you, my friends, that this application (or, rather non-application) of the commenting policies to the original OP is the very definition of absurdity. If Voices (and other Baptist and Reformed blogs) want to “clean up the blogosphere,” then shouldn’t the post be held to at least the same standards of the commenters, if not to even higher standards? I’ll let my readers decide that question. But, until then, enjoy the mental and linguistic gymnastics that are being practiced by some at Voices to keep from being hoisted on their own petard!

 

 

However, just because a blog adopts certain policies does not

38 comments for “Absurdity, Petards, & Commenting Policies on SBC Blogs

  1. Lydia
    March 30, 2012 at 5:16 PM

    LOL! This whole comment moderation reminds me of the good old days of the forums, the precursor to blog comments. We went round and round about comment moderation rules. You can make the all the rules you want but most of them will be subjective depending on the moderator. It is like the debate on when art becomes porn. Is Micheangelo’s sculpture of David in Rome, porn?

    We ended up doing similar to what you do here concerning profanity, vulgarity, etc.

    There is a cognative dissonance in not allowing Harriet’s comment on the W European Acts 29 interview but posting Rick’s OP today. I am starting to wonder if there is a higher standard for non Calvinist women? :o) Actually, I suspect today’s post is a bit of an attempt to “overcorrect”

    I have been deleted there quite a bit but to my knowledge few of the very caustic YRR guys have been deleted over the years.

    I like Rick’s writing and understood his metaphors were just that, metaphors. But I was also shocked it was allowed considering the brouhaha of the last few days.

    What bothers me the most about all of it is that it seems people have lost the ability to recognize that debate is not argueing. Nobody debates anymore because they have been taught it is mean and they are not prepared to debate because they never look deep at the other side to see why they believe what they believe. They shoulda grew up in my house! We had political debates over dinner my dad started. It was his way of teaching us how to think. And no touchy feely gobblygook allowed! :o)

    • March 30, 2012 at 5:35 PM

      Lydia,

      I, too, like Rick and how he writes. I also understood the metaphors and know that Rick did not intend them literally. However, given Voices’ new commenting policies,I found the editor allowing
      this post to be published with such inflammatory language that clearly violates the new policies is absurd and hypocritical. It has been amusing to watch some try to ignore this violation as if nothing happened. In light of Hariette’s comment being deleted prior to the new rules being published, the irony is delicious. And, sad. If people would think through these things we wouldn’t have these issues. But, it would be a lot less interesting 🙂 Thanks and God bless,

      Howell

  2. March 30, 2012 at 5:20 PM

    Yep, that post is beyond any decent and respectful conversation.

    Rick Patrick has apologized in the comment stream but apparently does not intende to remove the language from the post.

    Imagine if I called your grandmother a Nazi, subsequently apologized, and then never deleted my disrespectful name-calling from the post I apologized for, leaving all the future thousands of readers to come upon the post and see your grandmother labeled as evil. You would rightly say I am merely giving lip service. That is all Patrick’s apology is thus far, lip service.

    I am greatly disappointed in Dave’s approval and defense of this post.

    • March 30, 2012 at 5:46 PM

      Joshua,

      Even though I have serious reservations about Acts 29 in general and Mark Driscoll in
      particular, I think Rick’s use of a terrorist metaphor was unfortunate. I don’t blame you
      for being disappointed that Dave allowed this post to be published on Voices. Dave now
      has no choice but to defend a post that clearly violates the new commenting policies. That’s why I said allowing the post with the terrorist language was absurd and hypocritical. Perhaps this will help shed more light on the reasons for my previous post. Thanks for the interaction. Hope you have a great weekend! God bless,

      Howell

      • March 30, 2012 at 6:41 PM

        Howell, well, if nothing else, this just shows how inconsistent folks can be and how “acceptable” it is for the “keeper of the castle” but not the knaves in the kingdom. The peasant girls must mind their manners, submit to the king’s dictates without a whimper of protest.

        I agree with your op point:
        “Blog owners, writers, and editors are even free to apply their policies inconsistently and unfairly. There is no First Amendment right for a commenter to post whatever he or she wants and then expect it to be published on a blog which is owned and operated by another. As has become the rallying cry of some as of late, “If you want the freedom to say whatever you want, start your own blog!” Thanks. We have.”

        And really, Howell, if ya think about it, it isn’t my deletion that has caused such a furor as much as the fact that I simply went back to my own blog and exercised my “freedom to say whatever [I] want[ed].” Think about that a bit. So funny.

        As to Rick’s post, I’m sure there was some fun timing on that one, too. I’ll have to ask Rick when he wrote his post and how long it had been in the abeyance line at Voices before posting to be have clearer understanding of our friend, Dave’s logic for publishing a post so outright blistering toward the ACTS-29 folk after deleting my innocuous little comment.

        Personally, I do not have a single thing bad to say about the people, the Christians, who make up the NETWORK of churches, no more than I have any ill words to apply to my friends who sit in Presbyterian pews. (In fact, one of my dearest friends in life is a member of one of the Networks churches and absolutely loves it). I could no more disown him from my life for his affiliation with his church, than I could my father for leaving the SBC and joining the Church of Christ.

        My only opposition to Brandon’s post being placed in the ops of the SBC forum of blogs, was the subtle praising of a structure within the Network itself, the well-publicized views of their main man, Driscoll, and the subtle under radar nudges to affirm their affiliation with Southern Baptists as something which should brook no arguments or misgivings from we who think differently. Brandon, I do not know, but I feel the subject matter of the op is about showing how wonderful ACTS-29 missional methods are. Perhaps even superior to those our own church planters and missionaries are implementing? Any op which gets such open-air affirmation without a single opposing voice allowed in the forum of Southern Baptists who do not hold to the same convictions is in my biased opinion. It pulls up the drawbridge and drops her in the moat to drown or possibly never be heard from again. Instead she makes her way to the banks and lives to herald her voice in the old “crier” fashion and the alligators come crawling out of the moat to eat her heart and soul and plan strategies to limit that kind of “disrespect” to ever happen again.
        At least that is about how I saw it then, and how I see it now. But who am I? no one. no one at all. selahV

        • March 30, 2012 at 8:41 PM

          Hariette,

          Your response to Josh earlier about why I had written about these issues was correct. Since the GCRTF process and vote in Orlando in 2010 (which inspired me to start blogging), I have been concerned about a “top-down” approach becoming more acceptable within the Convention. Of course, you are right when you say that the SBC is not a denomination. I think some SBC leaders would like it to function more like a denomination. I think that some would much prefer a non-congregational approach to church governance. That’s why the “elder-ruled” model of Mars Hill is so concerning for those of us who are Baptists (in more than name only). That’s why this penchant for a more authoritarian leadership style, be it on certain blogs or within the ruling class of the Convention, becomes a major issue and cause for concern. Some, perhaps many, simply do not see (or care to see) what has been happening in the Convention. I had already experienced some of what you experienced (with almost the same scenario) about 5 weeks ago. That’s why when your comment was deleted, I was no longer able to stay silent. That is the effect — silence or marginalization — of the new philosophy at Voices, even if it’s not the intent (although I am more sure now than before that this is the intent). Part of this is the neo=Calvinist movement and part of this is the Acts 29 connection. Both of these do converge at points. That’s why your comment on Brandon’s post was not allowed to stand, IMO. As you say, “brook no arguments or misgivings from we who think differently.”

          But, just like good Baptists — who have historically been known for dissent — the age of new media cannot keep dissenting voices silent for very long, if at all. What the elites and their supporters fail to realize is that there is a large grassroots movement of cooperating Southern Baptists that is ready to explode. I know it and you know it. Just look at the number of visitors and views you had over the last few days. I had far and away the most views in a single day on Wednesday. People are concerned. They may not be speaking out yet, but more are being informed. Who are you? You are not “no one, no one at all.” You are a spark that will get the fire going. I truly appreciate you and others for letting your voice be heard and not silenced or marginalized. God bless,

          Howell

          • April 2, 2012 at 6:30 AM

            Howell, “you are a spark that will get the fire going.” I feel more like a dying ember, my friend. Your encouragement is like the Holy Spirit blowing upon it’s ash-covered crust and reviving the fading light within. I don’t do “this” kinda blogging. I don’t write posts and link to people. Unless it is something I want to “encourage” others to read because the link leads to something “encouraging”. I grieves me to even talk about it.

            For years I have sat back and watched folks rip my dearest SBC pastor/friend to shreds and lie about him, call him an “arrogant racist, a word-twisting, liar, an UN-Christian minister of the Gospel, a condescending joke, before VOICES ever joined the sea of wevoices in blogland and provided a platform for new younger, more restless voices to join in and begin banning my friend because he called them on their own words and now, they are allowed to run free and exercise their liberty and freedom of speech to call him the anti-Christ without so much as a burp of displeasure offered by the “keeper of the castle”. SBC-Voices was Tony Kummer’s brainchild. I have never felt one single iota of prejudice from him. EVER. He has done more to promote my “mellow, mild, and meek” voice than about anyone in blogland. That is a fact. I am saddened to the inner marrow of my bones over this.

            The only thing i regret in all of it, is telling Brandon that I didn’t read his post. However, after the emails of dissatisfaction, accusations cloaked in “concern”, and the latest April Fool spoof directly connected to the recent “voices” about ACTS-29 and the folks to whom Dave knows full well are avid fans (he’s been jabbing and joking with me about that for years), of the Boston Red Sox, well I have no illusions about what is going on anymore. I truly don’t. I had a white flag poised and ready raise and wave and even a post written, till that shot over the bow first thing appeared on my husband’s birthday. When I read that, and the comparison to the “evil” and the Satanic influence of, let’s face it, the newly crowned “anti-Christ” within Voices comment streams, I wanted to vomit. I don’t “return to my own vomit”, and I am not about to upchuck all over blogland. But I have thrown the New England Patriot red flag of protest and hope that those in the big box in the sky are able to see what those in the field cannot and make the proper judgment calls. Until now, the jury of my peers has been stacked. No more. No more. selahV

          • April 2, 2012 at 11:35 AM

            Hariette,

            I have never deleted anyone before, but mentioning the New England Patriots in any kind of positive way could be grounds for such 🙂 This, coming from a Miami Dolphins fan (can anyone say snowplow?) who now finds himself in the odd position of rooting for Tim Tebow and the New York Jets. Who says God doesn’t have a sense of humor. Speaking of humor, I love comedy, but the April Fool’s Day stuff on Voices was not only NOT funny, but it was clueless. Most of the articles were written as if in a bubble with awareness of how these “funny” posts would be perceived. The subtle digs were bad enough, although I’m not going to let that bother me. Did you or anyone else find it a bit odd (that’s the most charitable way to describe it) that on Palm Sunday, the first day of Holy Week, that so much time would be devoted to foolish things? I don’t know about at your church, but no one really mentioned “April Fool’s Day” at all yesterday. I know April 1 doesn’t always fall on Palm Sunday (what would have happened if it fell on Easter Sunday?), but, as a pastor, I sure wasn’t going to highlight it at the beginning of Holy Week. I am glad that I could be an encouragment to you and that God used my words to bring refreshment and reviving to you. We all need that, particularly those who are in ministry (and that goes doubly for pastors’ wives). May the Lord bless you and use you in a mighty way this week as He is lifted up! God bless,

            Howell

    • cb scott
      April 2, 2012 at 5:33 AM

      Joshua,

      Your constant condemnation of Rick Patrick smacks with nothing less that hypocrisy. You slam a great number of Southern Baptists who have stood in the gap so guys like you could reap the benefit. Below is a comment in response to your hypocrisy that I posted over at Voices. Normally, I don’t take a comment an spread it to other threads, but in this case I am going to make an exception since you continue to whine about Rick’s post simply because he questions Acts 29. Of course, you will say you are whining because of the metaphors Rick used, but we both know that is not the real motivation for your displeasure.

      Nonetheless, here is my response to you from Voices. it may get deleted, but it fits here rather well in response to your comment which was noting less than rude behavior.

      cb’s comment to Joshua from Voices on 04-01-2012:

      “Some of you fellows have given Rick Patrick a hard time for some of his metaphors. He did apologize and you (Joshua) had no reason on earth not to take his apology at face value, but you obviously didn’t.

      Now, you make this comment. I am going to challenge you for it. If I get deleted or banned, fine. I don’t really care. Integrity is an issue with me and personal and SBC history proves I am willing to pay dearly to maintain it.

      First a disclaimer:
      I am no traditionalist nor do I fit in any other little box some folks who comment here like to put others in to make their shallow arguments easy. I was questioning the SBC on issues before you were born. I know the SBC inside and out as well as any other person alive. I don’t wear bathrobes, nor have I lived with my mother since I was a young child. And I certainly do not live in a basement. Most of the stuff some of you guys think you just invented, I was doing years before anyone ever heard of Driscoll, Piper, Mohler, or any other guy you want to name.

      I had the opportunity to study under men who knew theology, knew church, knew evangelism, ect. when the six SBC seminaries were teaching garbage. I led in church plants before they were even called church plants and did not take one dime from any entity anywhere.

      And trust this Joshua, I am not the only one.

      There are tons of guys out here like me. We have been “doing church” and doing it right for years. We were missional before missional was cool. We were living, thinking, breathing, sharing, teaching and preaching the gospel before the word incarnational became cool. We were about the Great Commission and making the gospel known in our communities before the phrase “gospel centered” was ever used to draw a crowd of groupies to a conference or seminar.

      Now, I read this statement from you:

      “What is the integrity issue? These churches being planted might not request every head bowed and every closed, they might not have 100 stanzas of “Just as I am” at the end the service, but they are SBC churches nonetheless. What is the violation of integrity?”

      What is that mess Joshua? You criticize Rick Patrick and then you slam people who paved your way to go to LC by taking the school and turning it around?

      The people you are cracking on do not sing a 100 stanzas of “Just As I Am” nor do they all ask for everyone to “bow their heads and close their eyes at the end of the service.” That is an insult.

      If and I mean “if” Rick Patrick’s metaphors were “insulting” to some of your faint hearts, for sure, your caricatures of a great number of Southern Baptists who gave you your opportunity to study in a sound institution are beyond insulting. They are pathetic.

      So I challenge you here Joshua. I do because I have never been really one of those folks you insult here. I never did much of anything like anybody else. I never did “fit” in anyone’s mold, but I respect those who have stood for the gospel and theological purity for more years than the two of us have lived on this planet.

      You cried for Rick to apologize Joshua. Well, my brother, you need to apologize for your insulting and rude caricature to a great number of unnamed “truly proven, gospel centered” people who have no real idea what a Baptist blog is.

      BTW, there are valid and right questions to ask about Acts 29 and its founder and it is wrong to try to silence those who ask them.

      And another thing, you, Joshua and several other guys who comment here owe David Worley a legitimate apology. You treated him like a dog and not a brother and he did not deserve it. David Worley has shared the gospel of Jesus with more people than many of you put together. He is a proven shepherd. He deserved better. And in all truth, the guy has forgotten more biblical theology than many of you will ever learn.

      Now you cowboy up Joshua. Do the right thing and get rid of the attitude. God has given you gifts and talents. Don’t waste them.”

      • April 2, 2012 at 7:07 AM

        CB, thanks for posting your comment here. I haven’t had the stomach to read the comment stream of Rick’s post. I should, I’m sure. But I just cannot go to where I believe many are casting stones who should be grateful for those who’ve never raised one to sling their way. I have deduced this from the cries floating through the air beyond the post for which Rick is being uh…”challenged” and “debated”?

        The challenges to Rick’s views are only proving the point that Howell and I are trying to make with the new and reformed guidelines of Voices. It kinda reminds me of one Dr. Brad Whitt who dared share his concerns regarding those who dismissed his views, attire, and style of sharing the Gospel. All of a sudden the critics dumped on him like he was the plague. They brought out their anti-biotics and whipped out their surgical scapels to dissect every single syllable he said in his post of “ordinary” pastoring in the SBC.

        I am grateful for your words, CB, your defense of my “puff” friend Volfie. He is among those you refer to here:

        “There are tons of guys out here like me. We have been “doing church” and doing it right for years. We were missional before missional was cool. We were living, thinking, breathing, sharing, teaching and preaching the gospel before the word incarnational became cool. We were about the Great Commission and making the gospel known in our communities before the phrase “gospel centered” was ever used to draw a crowd of groupies to a conference or seminar.”

        My husband is also one of those “tons of guys”. He never played golf among the more liberal dudes, either. And just because these “tons of guys” you mention aren’t sitting around following twitters and returning tweets, doesn’t mean they agree with the direction of the SBC. It takes a bit of time to grow a course of grass which cannot be trampled down with a few thousand rounds of golf spikes. But there are “grass roots” so deeply rooted in the courses of SBC life that men who follow and bow down to leaders of a “non-existent chapter of Acts” in the Bible, will have a hard time keeping mowed down to play their 19 holes beyond ACTS-28. The Lady Lydia, the Lady Mary, and the Lady Dragon are doing more than typing their fingertips raw. They’re praying in the secret closets of their souls for the KING OF KINGS to have HIS way. And soon the Peters, Ricks, and Brads will be released from the prison walls and walk free of chains and shackles of those who conspire to silence their stanzas of “Just As I Am. Marching to Zion, the beautiful wonderful Zion, we’re marching upward to Zion the beautiful city of God.” selahv

      • Lydia
        April 2, 2012 at 8:47 AM

        Bravo, CB. I truly worry about these very young men who are so thin skinned and lacking in basic wisdom getting too much power too early. That was ONE of Driscoll’s problems besides his inherent vulgarity.

        We have all been that way to some extent when very young but were usually in places whether career or ministry where someone was kind enought to take us aside and point out how stupid we were and we had to grow up. When these young guys become leaders of their church plants so young, there is no one telling them how ignorant and unwise they are.

        We did not “plant” churches in my day, either, we just started them. :o)

        • April 3, 2012 at 8:12 AM

          Lydia, one encouraging thing about these “young” men is that someday they will be “old” men. And Lord only knows what “joke” will turn on them with their <b<own generation of “young men” begin making their “voices” known. I guess we can see the progression of things when one generation embraces something and the next accepts it as norm. When the line of normalcy moves and moves and moves…we find ourselves back at the guarded gates of Eden and the days of Noah. ya know?

      • Max
        April 2, 2012 at 10:50 AM

        Brother CB,
        Thank you for articulating your concern in this regard. It appears that many young Christians in SBC ranks are tuning out the voice of older believers and losing the perspective of generations which came before them. Lord knows we need the energy of youth, coupled with the wisdom of those more seasoned … young folks to speed things up, balanced by the experienced who can set a more reasonable pace … but arrogance and militancy should not be tolerated as the generations attempt to move forward together. Wasted gifts and talents, regardless of age, is a sad thing to behold.

      • April 2, 2012 at 11:48 AM

        CB,

        Thanks for reposting your response here. As I shared with Hariette, I have never deleted a post here, but speaking positively about the New England Patriots (or the Oakland Raiders) will be grounds for deletion 🙂 I appreciate your wisdom and your willingness to let your voice be heard. I think that both Lydia and Max have hit upon one of the major problems that we are facing, that being that the younger generations are not only wanting to keep moving ahead (which is okay), but that they seem to not want to listen to the wisdom of the older generations. It’s as if they know how church is “supposed to be done” and that folks who have been a part of the church for decades have no clue. I think we can all be guilty of that sort of pride and arrogance, but when it seems to be the main way some operate — especially pastors and other spiritual leaders — that is a characteristic that is unbecoming. Thanks again for stopping by and GO KY. God bless,

        Howell

        • Max
          April 2, 2012 at 3:35 PM

          GO KANSAS!!

          • April 2, 2012 at 4:29 PM

            I’m with that, Max. Although I’ll never understand that whole “Rock Chalk” thing.

            On the point: I was in college back when “The Purpose-Driven Church” came out and remember it being pushed in a few ministry classes as the “fix” for all of the ills of declining church issues. Alongside that was the push to consider church-planting because too many “old churches” would never accept new ideas and change their ways.

            I know that as a contributor at Voices, I’m part of the bad guy in much of this, but much of what you’re saying and how you are characterizing my generation is straight on. This push has been on for quite some time, to push past the “old ways” and go to new ones. I think we lost the ability to discern what new ones were good in the process. Unfortunately, we never seem to find a way to talk about these things until something explodes and relationships are damaged beyond repair.

            We cannot seem to fix it. Are we too big as the SBC because we’re too big to have actual relationships with most of our fellow participants? I just don’t know.

          • Max
            April 2, 2012 at 8:50 PM

            Doug, it’s half-time and things don’t look good for Kansas. It’s past-time in the SBC and things don’t look well for us, either.

            I hear your heart in your reply to me. I wish this was an easy fix. While we are waiting for resurgent to pass the way of seeker-friendly, purpose-driven and emergent, we are creating a huge chasm to cross within SBC ranks. I, too, fear that relationships are being damaged beyond repair. The only hope is for a genuine 2 Chronicles 7:14 to break out in our midst. Reckon who will lead that charge?

          • April 3, 2012 at 8:15 AM

            Max, my apologies for KY win last night. But it sure did make my Kentucky born, Kentucky bred, son-in-law happy. And I want him to be happy cause I want him to build me an entertainment center for my television. So, while I revel in KY’s win, I still offer condolences for your loss. selahV (the mellow one)

  3. Bruce H.
    March 30, 2012 at 6:43 PM

    It seems to me that Dave did the right thing with the policy. There is a line we must have in order to keep things in check whether or not it is perfectly straight.

    • March 30, 2012 at 8:15 PM

      Bruce,

      For the sake of argument, let’s stipulate that Dave did the “right thing” with the policy. As I stated in my OP, any blog owner (or editor) is free to adopt rules for commenting (if commenting is even allowed on the blog) and can even enforce those rules inconsistently or unfairly. I just find it humorous — absurd, really — that the post that is in question so clearly violated the stated rules for commenting. If a blog — Voices, my blog or any other blog — is going to have written policies for commenting, then there should at least be a pretense of fairness in how the policies are applied. Thanks for reading and taking the time to comment. God bless,

      Howell

    • April 2, 2012 at 5:28 PM

      Bruce, I have no real beef with Dave’s policy. Just the way he arbitrarily enforces his policy and cherry-picks comments based on preconceived feelings about a person’s motives, intent, heart and soul. Last time I checked, only God knew me…not even we know ourselves. Yet, Dave and his newly-aligned group of yay-sayers seem to know me, better than I do…yep. They sure do. I wonder if they could tell me what color drapes to get for my living room? selahV

  4. Robert I Masters
    April 2, 2012 at 11:49 AM

    Here is an example of Daves unfairness.

    “Permit me a comment here about moderation.

    I allow people to comment under assumed names. However, I am a little more strict with your content if your name or identity is hidden, and I do not allow people to post under false email addresses.

    One such dishonest person got himself banned from commenting at SBC Voices this morning. Because of his constant disrespectful attitude, I had placed him on moderation – I had to review his comments before they appeared.

    But he has tried to circumvent that through deceit by using names like Orang Asli and Bintang Kejora.

    If you want to comment here, you don’t have to use your full, or even your real name. But your email needs to be correct. I have NEVER given one of those out to anyone, but a real email needs to be on your comment”.

    My real email was in the comment…he just did not like the fact that I had multiple
    email addresses.

  5. Robert I Masters
    April 2, 2012 at 2:11 PM

    Here is some more of Dr Daves loving responses to those he disagrees with on sbcvoices.

    “You see, Rob Masters is an arrogant man with some extremist views. He does not know how to carry on a conversation with others. So, I’ve moderated his comments. If you knew him, you would know why that is necessary. The guy is a mess. I don’t know much about him, but if you knew him, you would know that keeping him from leaving his comments on a blog is important.”

    • April 2, 2012 at 5:21 PM

      Robert, I’m really confused with that comment. You mean that Dave said, “You, see Rob Masters is an arrogant man with some extremist views. He does not know how to converse with others. So, I’ve moderated his comments. If you knew him, you would know why that is necessary. The guy is a mess. I don’t know much about him, but if you knew him, you would know that keeping him from leaving his comments on a blog is important?”

      Dave said that? I emboldened the part that makes no sense. First he tells folks how “arrogant” a man you are, with “extremist views”. Then he explains how “you do not know how to converse with others.” And he says he has moderated your comments. (Is “moderated” the new word for “deleted”?)
      But more than anything that seems odd to me is that first he shares what you are like, which may or not be true, then he says he doesn’t know you, then he says if we knew what you were like, we’d understand???? Uh…what kind of double-speak is that? Sounds like one of John Kerry’s remarks about being against something before he was against it and now he realizes he is for it. Whew…no wonder no one knows how to comment anymore. Bleh.

      • Robert I Masters
        April 2, 2012 at 8:21 PM

        Selah V
        He was writing to me under the name Bintang Kejora. But since he could not find actually comment violations he emailed those thoughts as his rational basis for deleting me!

  6. Volfan007
    April 2, 2012 at 7:25 PM

    CB,

    Thank you, Brother, for standing up for me. I do appreciate that greatly. I’ve quit going to SBC Voices for the very reason you stated. I have better things to do with my time than to be attacked, insulted, ridiculed, and slapped in the face with every comment I make. It is very apparent to me that SBC Voices does not want anyone, who does not agree with them, speaking their views and opinions. If you do, then you’ll be called everything but a Southern Baptist.

    Then, I saw SBC leaders commenting at Voices….and pals of SBC leaders commenting….and being buddy buddy with the ones, who were the most mean spirited and angry and arrogant…and it makes me feel… well, sad. Sad about the future of the SBC. I’m concerned. I’m a concerned Baptist.

    Anyway, God bless you, CB! God bless you, Hariette! Hang in there, Gal. And, I think I’m gonna start coming to this blog. I like what I see here.

    David

    • April 2, 2012 at 7:59 PM

      Brother Vol,

      Brother CB is a stand-up guy. He may meet with former President Carter to give him insight into how the New Baptist covenant can be a covenant without any covenant, but that is just him. 🙂 Of course he drinks too much kool-aide and places a pink ribbon on his bulldog when he takes him to the groomers but other than those flaws he is ok.

      Blessings,
      Tim

      • cb scott
        April 2, 2012 at 8:44 PM

        Tim Rogers,

        I am trying my best to watch Kentucky bring another Championship home to the SEC and here you are telling secrets I told you not to tell. If you are not careful, I will post your Church Admin. papers from seminary on Voices.

        Ladies and gentlemen, my bulldog is a fine specimen of a hardcore Bulldog. She is the only one I have at the moment. I lost two great ones last year. I will get more in time, when I can find one that ranks with the dearly departed Jake and Molly. They will be hard to replace and I am picky about my dogs.

        As to the now infamous “pink ribbon” that my hoodlum friend Tim Rogers has now made know to the universe. I have two little girls, 12 and 10. In an effort to make my dog appear to be more like their friend’s little sissy dogs, they want me to have a pink ribbon put on Liberty every time I bring her back from the groomer.

        I have never had girls before, so I am finding myself giving in to many things that all my boys would never get by with in this life. Girls are just a different breed of human being and they have to be treated entirely differently than a roughnecked bunch of boys.

        So I let the groomer put the pink ribbon on my Bulldog. Yet, be assured, I rush her into our home as fast as I can when I get back from the groomer so my neighbors will not think me and my dog have grown soft. I only leave that pink ribbon on one day. After that, my Bulldog gets her black collar back and I feed her a good meal of gunpowder to help her get her focus back so she will be able to fend off invaders when I am gone from home.

        I am not going to talk about the Jimmy Carter meeting. Some things are just too painful. 😉

        • April 3, 2012 at 8:24 AM

          CB… You write:

          “Girls are just a different breed of human being and they have to be treated entirely differently than a roughnecked bunch of boys.”

          I have to say that is a very interesting concept. Wonder what happens when little girls grow up and become ladies. Would you say that ladies “have to be treated entirely differently that a roughnecked bunch” of men? 🙂

          p.s. I think that you deserve Daddy-prize of the year for bringing your dog home with a pink ribbon for your girls. This, my friend, is why I appreciate you so much. selahV

    • April 2, 2012 at 8:03 PM

      Well, now, Volfie, you know you are always welcome at my blog (or more accurately, blogS). Don’t tell anyone on here, especially Doug Hibbard, cause I’m beginning to like him, but I am sitting here watching UK Wildcats whooping up on Kansas. I hope they win because my son-in-law wore his tattered UK tee-shirt and (equally tattered) UK cap to dinner tonite. I’m so excited for him that I can hardly wait to hear him ROAR.

      Pitino deserved to lose to the Cats, considering he abandoned them for higher grounds. Go cats! 🙂

      • Lydia
        April 2, 2012 at 8:08 PM

        I cannot look at Pitino without thinking of his girlfriends (one night stand) trial for extortion. I could not find a parking place downtown for a week!

        • April 3, 2012 at 8:27 AM

          Lydia, hard for me, too. I interviewed Rick one time when he came to a dinner for the Pitino center for homeless in Owensboro, KY. His wife, Joann, is a sweetheart. Hard for me to believe, having talked with Rick, how he could have allowed himself to be led down that path of darkness. Sad, truly sad.

    • Lydia
      April 2, 2012 at 8:09 PM

      CB is the Teddy Roosevelt of the SBC. Walk softly and carry a big uzi. :o)

    • April 2, 2012 at 9:06 PM

      David,

      I understand why you quit going to Voices. It’s one thing to get into a passionate dialogue with folks that you may not agree with on some issues. It’s quite another to be riduled, mocked and insulted. I know from reading your comments at Voices and on Peter’s blog that we disagree on a few issues, although we both view ourselves as cooperating conservative Southern Baptists who probably agree on the vast majority of issues affecting the SBC today. It is that very cooperative philosophy that is under attack from some with the establishment and many within the YRR movement. I have described myself as an inconsistent Calvinist, but when I find myself having more pleasant and productive conversations with non-Calvinists and moderate Baptists than with some neo-Calvinists with whom I might share more in common theologically (though not ecclesiologically), I think that this does not bode well for cooperative missions in the long run. That being said, notwithstanding the fact that you are a Vols fan and I am a Gators fan, you are welcome to stop by and comment anytime 🙂 Thanks and God bless,

      Howell

    • cb scott
      April 2, 2012 at 9:55 PM

      Anytime Vol. Anytime.

      I guess you know a SEC team, Kentucky just won the title in D1 Basketball. The joys of the SEC, ain’t they grand??

      • April 3, 2012 at 5:49 AM

        Glad it’s here, but given Calipari’s track record I’m afraid that we’ll have to give it back in a few years. Hopefully not.

  7. Lydia
    April 2, 2012 at 8:06 PM

    “This push has been on for quite some time, to push past the “old ways” and go to new ones. I think we lost the ability to discern what new ones were good in the process. Unfortunately, we never seem to find a way to talk about these things until something explodes and relationships are damaged beyond repair.”

    Doug, I appreciate your view. I was thinking as I was reading your post about myself back in my 20’s and helping grow mega churches. We were cool and did church right, of course. (wink) The difference I see with the YRR and what we did is that we did not expect the traditionalists who disagreed with us to pay for it.

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