A difference of opinion is not an attack.
We can only have meaningful discussion if we maintain the ability to disagree politely.
Take from this what you will.
Depends on the topic: if your opinion supports people who hurt others I’m unlikely to worry too much about being polite.
If your opinion stands against settled science I am likewise going to worry not too much about my tone.
Though this article posted here recently was interesting and to the point
This reminds me the pyramid of argument.
The 2 highest levels bring the discussion forward, The second level corrodes the power of an argument until you have enough "argument power" to go to the highest level.
Not always the second level will bring to the first, sometimes it ill just change the conclusions accepting part of the arguments, combining with new ones that will go to a different conclusion, those are the nicest discussions in my opinion and are in the politely disagreement that can come to a nice synthesis, bringing a new agreement out of the disagreement.
The third level create parallel discussions, because it does not talk with the first argument. It is useful on political debate to change the subject, but on an structured argument, it only expands and create confusion. Should be used only after the first level is achieved.
The fourth level just puts smoke on the discussion and does not create even an alternative route, it is pure distraction.
The lower levels don't even need comments XD
Yes, the passion of debate can certainly bring out anger in people. My pet peeve is when people get into petty name calling (the most recent was when someone called someone a "dumbass" ). I think it's just rude and immature. I love using this platform to share opinions, facts, etc.
That's just, like, your opinion, man.
"The Duderino's" quotes aside, I've been thinking about this lately. What if "meaningful discussion" isn't the goal? What if polite disagreement isn't the goal? What if you've decided you are right, and therefore can lie, cheat, and steal in service of your righteousness because the ends justify the means? And what if those on the other side (who are obviously wrong) deserve whatever sneaky, underhanded knife you slip in their back because, you know, they aren't you and thus aren't right? What if intellectual honesty is not valued? What if honor is for suckers, humility is for losers, lies are true, and morality is just a bat you use to smash over your neighbor's head because it feels so good?
On the other hand, disagreeable disagreement may be healthy in small doses. Maybe we just need to vent at each other once in a while, with no meaningful discussion. Then as we get old and the young people get sick of our arguing, they will have meaningful discussions as we slowly die off.
Some attacks are wrongly characterized as "mere differences of opinion." There's this assumption, in Internet discourse, how unless you refer to a specific individual when making extremely negative statements it's not an attack. But there are many attacks which are so negatively focused on one group, and often involving spreading purposely dubious information about that group, that they are personal... highly personal. Those are not worthy of polite discussion. It's a form of trolling and only deserve to be treated as such.