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Re: semantics

Dear Friends
        I usually stay out of the fray, but felt I had to add my comment this
time. Observing the various heated debates on the list, it seems to me
that they become heated, and on occasion nasty, because of the tone,
rather than the content, of the postings. Words are subject to
interpretation for both their meaning and the feelings behind them. I
found Madeleine Fix's response to Bob's letter to Artemis aggressive in
tone, more of an attack than a commentary.
        In a later posting Madeleine Fix wrote, "the person who
misunderstands has every right to demand clarification of the words
which have confused clear meanings." While it may be "every person's
right to DEMAND clarification," I would suggest that the dialogue would
be better served if clarification were REQUESTED instead.
        What makes this list work are the contributions of the group- sharing
experiences and opinions and asking and answering questions. I am always
impressed by the generosity of all who take part. The discourse depends
upon this generosity of spirit and willingness to share. If people feel
that they will be attacked for their contributions, they will be less
likely to come forward. I know I was very nervous when I made my first
posting, and still feel a little flutter of nervousness as I click the
send button. I think everyone who takes the step to make a posting
should be treated with respect and civility.

in good spirit,

Susan Kapuscinski Gaylord
Newburyport, MA

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