Re: Johnson's Removal from Anthro-l

Cameron Laird (claird@STARBASE.NEOSOFT.COM)
Tue, 14 Mar 1995 14:40:17 -0600

I recognize that this subject has received
FAR more attention than it deserves, but I
want to note one aspect that perhaps is
worth airing publicly.
After the time when the discussion on the list turned to dropping Johnson,
I think it is very unfortunate that the censorship debate, which all on
both sides who contributed assumed was Hugh's reason for dropping him, was
not diffused immediately. This could have been done by posting the real
reason behind the list-owner's problem with him. There was an opportunity
then to take a principled stand away from even the *perception* of
political censorship.
Professor Tanner has opened my eyes. I assumed rather
the opposite; that everyone posting to ANTHRO-L, except
for a few newcomers to Internet behavior and technical
basis, understood that this was *not* about "censorship".
Yes, we do need to take advantage of opportunities for
leadership, for standing on principle, and for communi-
cating clearly and explicitly.

I thought Hugh's description of the situation marvelous.
I particularly emphasize that there is a characteristic
pattern some people exhibit, of provoking tumult and
simultaneously declining opportunities for dialogue, that
has been with us since long before there was an Internet.
The search for rationalizations of this pattern serves
neither its bearers nor others. It is far healthier all
around to make a decision and move on.

Cameron Laird +1 713 267 7966 +1 713 996 8546