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Self rigtheous, smug, pompous and pontificate attitudes - do these help our cause?

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by GRB, Apr 26, 2005.

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  1. GRB

    GRB member

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    Do folks here or on other gun related forums believe that smugly expressing themselves as better than others really help to support our cause toward second amendment rights when the expression of such comes off as smug, self righteous, pontificate, or pompous? Please note that this is a question - this is not an accusation.

    I am truly wondering about this because sometimes there seems to be a smug sense of self righteousness that comes across from gun owners who seem to think they are better than others either morally, ethically, intelligently, strength of character wise, religiously and so on. I am not talking about very generally accepted ethics and beliefs along these lines. For example I do not mean a belief such as: We believe murder is bad therefore we are better than those who commit murder. What I mean to say is that it seems to me that some people apparently think they are better than others along the above lines because of their narrower specific belief systems such as religious beliefs, narrow ethical beliefs, ethnicity, nationality, and so forth. Therefore some people (and remember this is specifically about people on gun forums) seemingly become insulting, degrading, scornful, against the other person whenever that other person expresses other beliefs. Those beliefs can be expressed outright or inoffensively by the person with the other belief yet, there seem to be those, on every gun site with forums, who immediately have to go on the offensive and become nasty or scornful in reply and do so with an air of smugness and pomposity. They apparently become so self inflated in their own self satisfaction that is cocooned by their own belief system that they find it needful to ridicule all others even if they only do so in somewhat muted terms.

    Is this something that others of you see happening also? If so, is this good for the cause of protecting our constitutional rights, specifically our right to keep and bear arms or; does such an attitude only go to alienate us from our own potential allies and make us a weaker target for our opposition? If it is happening as much as I believe it to be, why is it that we are not more able to become united under our single cause while leaving the degradation at home? Why is it that besides being against the opposition we also apparently have to be against one another? Remember again please, I am not talking about the difference between being supportive of generally accepted taboos such as murder, pedophilia, rape, oppressive tyranny, criminal acts, religious oppression by the state or by a religion and so forth. I am speaking to the fact that many of us have differing belief systems regarding much more benign things that even though practiced still allow the practicioner to be a good person. Yet, it seems evident that some of us have to attack those different beliefs of others when they are not malignant at all and; the attack is quite often along the less than desirable manners described above as opposed to by way of intelligent and respectful opposing debate.

    What do you folks think?

    All the best,
    Glenn B
     
  2. logical

    logical Member

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    No, it is probably not helpful.
     
  3. El Rojo

    El Rojo Member

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    I don't think it matters. You can only control yourself and your attitude. Be yourself, do what you feel is right, and encourage others to do the same. If some people like to take the better than you road, let them. The anti's really don't care much, they don't believe in anything we do most times and they could care less. We are not all one unified body and I think we would be foolish to ever believe we could be. We are a diverse group with diverse opinions. Lets not be too critical of ourselves, it will only depress you and ruin what you have going.

    Speak your peace, be comfortable with your stand, and try to influence those you can. You really can't do anything else about it.
     
  4. trapperjohn

    trapperjohn Member

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    as soon as we start sounding like a pompous a$$ people will tend to stop heeding our arguement. in any arguement where you want to persuade someone, you need to at least give the appearance of respecting their opinion and being open minded.
    witty sayings and such may get a chuckle out of bystanders, but will do nothing to convince the one being argued with
     
  5. richyoung

    richyoung Member

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    depends - are we "preaching to the choir", in which case it probably doesn't matter, or are we truly trying to convert the heathen? If so, politeness will go a long way...
     
  6. Relayer

    Relayer Member

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    Are bad manners helpful?

    I guess it would be hard to argue that they are.

    This board is not likely to sway many one way or the other.

    IMHO, it's mostly by us, for us (gun lovers).
     
  7. MikeIsaj

    MikeIsaj Member

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    Glenn;

    I agree 100%.

    Reading your post made me realize what it is about these attitudes that pushes my buttons.

    It's called bullying.

    As I've stated before, we will not win one mind by bluster and bravado. Calm, rational logic, preferably a discussion that stimulates intelligent thought in the other person will win people over. In my experience anti gun people have generally not thought their position through. That's why liberalism is so popular, it's easy, doesn't require intellectual effort. If you give them cause to consider their view, they generally see it as the illogical stand that it is.
     
  8. The Rabbi

    The Rabbi member

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    Aren't you the same guy who posted that illegal immigrants are maggots, varmints, and sub human scum???
    Dont you think referring to human beings that way might reflect badly, esp coming from an LEO?
     
  9. DSRUPTV

    DSRUPTV Member

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    I think that open minded conversation is the best way to share one's opinions. I really think that many people when presented politely, and respectfully with logic about gun ownership can be swayed. I also know that there are many die-hards out there that will never accept guns. Offering to take someone to the range seems to be a good tactic sometimes as well. Having a chip on your shoulder and acting superior to others will usually push them away, and make them disrespect you and your opinions.
     
  10. Old Dog

    Old Dog Member

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    Why, yes he was ... "parasitic vermin," "scum of the earth" and the "largest group of criminals" in the U.S. were some of the terms he used, while depicting illegal aliens in this country as "having more rights" than you or I.
    So, in GB's own words, he is describing some of the very methods of discourse he himself has engaged in ...
     
  11. Zundfolge

    Zundfolge Member

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    Hmm ... talk about irony defined.

    You used the phrase "pompous and pontificate attitudes" when complaining about pompous and pontificate attitudes? :neener:


    At any rate, its hard not to be a little self righteous when debating with antis because often their data is just dead wrong yet they (self righteously I might ad) continue to debate even when you've handed them their head on a platter (rhetorically).

    In addition, there are just too many people who can't tell the difference between "self righteous, smug and pompous" and "secure in their knowledge/beliefs".


    If one is right, there is no reason to appologize or downplay one's "rightness".
     
  12. gunsmith

    gunsmith member

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    almost 100% correct

    but you see,we gun owners are smarter then "regular" people...
    and 100% supior intelek over anti guners.

    :neener:
     
  13. mnrivrat

    mnrivrat Member

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    The problem of which you speak is a character problem and certainly not unique to gun forums.

    Nothing turns me off faster than those that always think and express that they have the high ground - moraly, mentaly, or any other way you care to talk about. Self confidence is different than smugness, and arrogance.

    That said, it isn't always the message - sometimes, it's the messenger !
     
  14. Standing Wolf

    Standing Wolf Member in memoriam

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    I've never seen any special reason to be polite to people who've openly declared their intention to turn me into a socialist serf.
     
  15. Zundfolge

    Zundfolge Member

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    So you're telling me that you wouldn't come off as condescending when debating the flatness vs. roundness of the Earth with a member of the Flat Earth Society?



    When your opponent is demonstrably wrong yet they continue to spout off their discredited beliefs as fact, its hard ... if not impossible to not appear "smug and arrogant" when debating with them.


    supporters of gun control as a means to "make the world a better/safer place" are wrong ... this is not an "opinion" but a scientifically verifiable fact.


    Anyway, I don't think I'm doing a good job of making my point, which is; It doesn't matter how "nice" we are when arguing with antis, the fact that we are "right" and they are "wrong" means we will be seen as being self righteous, smug, pompous, arrogant and having "pontificate attitudes".
     
  16. Andrew Rothman

    Andrew Rothman Member

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    Glenn, your post is a picture-perfect example of "begging the question." You answer the question in asking it in perjorative terms.

    There is a valid argument to be made that those who are not hypocrites, who take personal responsibility for their well-being and that of their families, and who choose to live their lives according to a moral code are superior to those who do not.

    While few will argue that pomposity is the way to win friends and influence people, the opposite may be moral relativism.
     
  17. Gordon Fink

    Gordon Fink Member

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    When has this ever swayed the faithful?

    ~G. Fink
     
  18. Sharps Shooter

    Sharps Shooter Member

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    I'm always polite and respectful of those who would deny my rights and have my personal, private property confiscated and/or outlawed.
     
  19. mnrivrat

    mnrivrat Member

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    When your right - your right . That doesn't change fact into anything else. Arrogance is "an undue degree of self importance , an exorbitant claim to dignity , a lordly contempt of others ". If you think your going to make friends and influence people with just being right - I think you need to think again.

    Perfectly sound messages of fact can get lost in presentation.
     
  20. Zundfolge

    Zundfolge Member

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    Ask a 1000 people what the definition of "an undue degree" of self importance or "exorbitant" claim to dignity are and you'll get 1000 different answers.

    To many people, just asserting that you are right is "an undue degree of self importance , an exorbitant claim to dignity , a lordly contempt of others"

    Antis don't want to be my friend, they want me disarmed, helpless and probably dead.

    The best way to make "friends" is to have no core values, no ideals and no belief in right and wrong ... that way you are as inoffensive to others as possible (even to bad people).

    I'd rather be right and disliked then wrong and loved ... the only way antis will love us is if we give them what they want. In other words, they will only like us when we become antis too.


    Do we want antis to like us ... to say nice things about us ... to invite us to their parties? Or do we want to defeat them?
     
  21. logical

    logical Member

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    I somehow suspect that things like the ongoing public debate over whether "twenty" or " a five gallon bucket full" is the proper minimum number of AR magazines to keep on hand probably harms the cause as much as the pompous crowd.
     
  22. whm1974

    whm1974 Member

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    People DOING the above has cause a lot of problems.

    -Bill
     
  23. another okie

    another okie Member

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    "Pontificate" is a verb, not an adjective.

    Just my contribution to the smugness quotient.
     
  24. MikeIsaj

    MikeIsaj Member

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    I was just going to ask if anyone knew what Pontificate meant. It is a verb that I've never heard anyone but me and Woody Allen use before. (His was a line in a movie so maye it doesn't count.)

    Would the adjective be pontificious or pontifical?
     
  25. Harry Paget Flashman

    Harry Paget Flashman Member

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    In regards to the subject line of this thread, this old saying comes to mind....

    "Follow him who seeks the truth; beware of him who has found it."
     
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