Back here, one "Patrick Ross" has been on an absolute mission, badgering me incessantly to get me to reveal who I am, as if that would somehow contribute to this discourse in some meaningful way. This leads me to ask the simple question, Patrick: If I told you who I was, what would you do with that information?
What would be the value of that information, Patrick? Would it make my posts suddenly easier to address or refute? Would it allow you to more thoroughly engage me on the field of intellectual combat? What? Because I'll tell you what it would allow.
It would allow people like Celestial Junk's Paul to exercise his rather peculiar notion of "free speech":
Civil society offers us legal remedy via the courts. The Left has fought for this more than any other group ... so, Mr. CC would have to face the very institutions and standards that have largely been advanced by the Left.
In CC case, I doubt that the courts would be necessary ... a simple exercise in free speech by the other side would likely have him groveling like a kitten. But you see, the other side can't exercise their right to free speech unless CC were known. And that, is where he and others like him are operating outside the bounds of civil society.
So, apparently, the "other side" has been utterly unable to respond to me and exercise their right to "free speech" because ... they don't know who I am? Yes, let's ignore the dozens and dozens of comments I've allowed them to leave on my blog, and let's ignore their freedom to have written dozens of posts, expressing their opinion on the subject because, in Paul's opinion, that doesn't qualify as "free speech".
No, in Paul's world, "freedom of speech" must necessarily involve, as you can read above, having the ability to make me "grovel like a kitten." So let's strip the veneer of civility off of this discussion, shall we, Mr. Ross? Because, quite simply, for Paul (and a frightening number of people just like him), the only definition of "free speech" that means anything to them would be the freedom to learn who I am so they can take it from there.
That "freedom" would undoubtedly involve harassing me incessantly, leaving threatening messages on my answering machine, maybe vandalizing my car and, hey, probably just plain tracking me down to physically assault me. Don't believe me? Then explain what Paul could possibly mean when he writes that he and others can't exercise their right to "free speech" until they find out who I am.
You think I exaggerate? Not even a little bit. And there is, at that comments section of Paul's, this comment directly underneath the one I quoted:
Ah, but Paul - someone out there knows who CC is. An ego like his is unable to keep silent. All it takes is one of his entourage to let slip the information.... And that shouldn't be hard. An offensive individual like that is bound to seriously annoy someone close to him, annoy enough to provoke creative retaliation. Unless, of course, CC has no friends at all, and is shunned by his family, always a possibility.
One thing few people realise is that no one is truly anonymous on the internet. A good techie could track CC down. Anyone out there want to give it a shot?
Anonymous | 07.20.07 - 7:09 pm
And the point of "tracking me down" would be ... what, exactly? To personally engage me in witty, intellectual banter? I think not.
These people have had unfettered freedom to exercise their "freedom of speech" every which way from now to Sunday but, apparently, there's something they can't quite do until they find out my true identity. Now what could that be, Patrick? Hmmmmm? What could that possibly be? Think hard ... given time, I'm sure it will come to you eventually.
So how about you put away that childish attitude, Patrick, where you keep challenging my "courage" for choosing to remain anonymous. I have my reasons. Now it remains to be seen whether you're too fucking stupid to finally realize what they are.