Serious food for thought. I got this via email, and it can't be properlyÂ deep-linked to on the website because the guy uses frames but the main link to his site is http://www.lairdwilcox.com/Â and it's under the category: "News & Thoughts"
Here is an excerpt. It definitley makes me think twice about what I say and how. You can't unring a bell, so the past is gone but in the future I'm going to weigh what I write against this.
The Practice of Ritual Defamation
How values, opinions and beliefs are
controlled in democratic societies.
Â Â Â Â Defamation is the destruction or attempted destruction of the reputation, status, character or standing in the community of a person or group of persons by unfair, wrongful, or malicious speech or publication. For the purposes of this essay, the central element is defamation in retaliation for the real or imagined attitudes, opinions or beliefs of the victim, with the intention of silencing or neutralizing his or her influence, and/or making an example of them so as to discourage similar independence and "insensitivity" or non-observance of taboos. It is different in nature and degree from simple criticism or disagreement in that it is aggressive, organized and skillfully applied, often by an organization or representative of a special interest group, and in that it consists of several characteristic elements.
Â Â Â Â Ritual Defamation is not ritualistic because it follows any prescribed religious or mystical doctrine, nor is it embraced in any particular document or scripture. Rather, it is ritualistic because it follows a predictable, stereotyped pattern which embraces a number of elements, as in a ritul.
To see the elements of Ritual Defamation, pleaseÂ click onÂ this link and then click on "News & Thoughts" to find this article.