There is a trend beginning to emerge that I find very disturbing.
It started with the Anti-Smokers who, when holding their policy making decisions openly banned anyone from attending who wasn't an Anti-Smoker. This of course resulted in an echo chamber full of nodding heads and the inevitable outcome was that policies were extreme, one sided and with no tolerance for any argument whatsoever.
Recently there was another example. Leonardo Dicaprio [a slit eyed second rate actor with no qualifications whatsoever] called for a ban on all climate "deniers" from holding office. If you aren't a fervent believer in the Church of Climate Change then you must be gagged and prevented from holding an opinion.
What saddened me about the latter was that there was an article and a poll on the subject and the majority [50%] agreed with this policy. Are there that many who no longer believe in debate or discussion?
One of the marks of a free society is the ability and right to hold opposing views. People are free to express their views and debate them. An exclusion of any opposition to any theory or line of thought will lead to that theory becoming dogma. Once it was held as scientific fact that the Earth was the centre of the Universe and any opposing theory was heresy. There is no difference between that and the modern trend. If you don't believe in their religion you must be excluded and your voice never heard.
In a way, this site is a microscopic version of freedom in that anyone is free to hold a view in opposition to mine. Unfortunately, there is a tendency for people who disagree with me to shun the place and go elsewhere. Indeed, I did have a prolific commenter in the past whose comments I thoroughly enjoyed, but one day I got a private email saying that if I didn't change my views [on climate change] he would have to stop reading and commenting. Fair enough. I was very sad to see him go but I would much rather have debated the subject with him.
I have my views on things and there are [probably a vast majority] who hold opposing views but all are welcome here. I don’t lay down any rules that people can’t comment unless they fully agree with my opinions. I have never banned or deleted any opposition [with one exception but he was just a fucking irritating little Troll!], despite claims in the past that I have done so.
Exclusion of dissent is a very dangerous path. It leads to erroneous theories becoming "fact". It stifles progress and turns science into religion.
And suppression of counter arguments is a sure sign they know they may well be wrong.