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Re: Political Issues

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Richard Ranous wrote: 
 
>After receiving your message I find I must respectfully protest.  We are 
professionals and should be able to site our views and opinions simply as 
views and opinions. < 
 
If we are free to cite our views and opinions on any subject on this list,
the 
purpose of this list will be destroyed.  The whole idea of having 
subject-specific forums for discussion is to allow discussion to concentrate 
in one area and not be inundated with off-topic discussions.   
 
> One of the major problems today are a few who claim to represent
"mainstream 
society" are telling the rest of us not only what to think but how to think 
about it!  I am getting very tired of a few individuals on this list
dictating 
to us what can be said and how it can be said!  My disappointment in this
area 
is not directed at Shafat, it is directed at the rest of the narrow minded 
members of this list who simply can't stand to hear an opinion on other than 
structural engineering which differs from their sacred beliefs.  < 
 
How is limiting discussion to engineering issues "telling you what to think 
and how to think about it"?  Personally, I don't want to hear discussion of 
Starr's report here, whether the writer agrees with my position or not. 
This 
is simply not the forum for that discussion.  I've heard plenty of varying 
opinions in other media - can't we have a "safe haven" where we don't need
to 
hear all this political commentary?   
 
>You have the right to express your opinion as long as you don't expect the 
rest of us to accept it as fact.  To those who have complained about
expressing 
political opinions on this list, I say, grow up!  What has made the US 
strong is the ability to discuss opinions in an open forum. < 
 
Freedom of speech has never meant that you can express your opinion whenever 
and wherever you want.  (For example, heckling a speaker is not considered 
free speech.)  Using freedom of speech also requires responsibility in how
you 
use it.  (I've expressed my opinion on the Starr report elsewhere as well -
in 
an email to the White House.) 
 
Shafat - thank you for your attempts to keep this listserver on topic.