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Re: AHS Robin/On the Term "Personal Attack"

In a message dated 9/9/1999 10:02:23 AM Central Daylight Time, 
jmahosta@WinterberryFarms.com writes:

<< No matter where this debate about the Society's policies goes, it does not 
need personal attacks, either in the open or in private.  I learned from long 
years and many debates in science that as soon as the debate gets personal 
the subject is lost. >>
 Dear Jim,

Thank you very much for your well-reasoned, articulate and thoughtful post, 
an exerpt of which I post above.

I suppose that everyone, but me, knows what a "personal attack" is or means.

I have heard very good friends engaged in conversation where one says to the 
other, "I think your idea is stupid (or dumb, etc.). Is such a "personal 

Does the term connote an "attack" on the person rather than the (an) idea? 
Such as, "I think Mrs. X. is a bag of wind." ?

The term "personal attack" suggests there is such a thing as an "impersonal" 
attack. E.g. , "I think the AHS is an awful organization." Should that be 
verboten--or is that a personal attack?

I am not trying to be facetious. I just don't know what the term "personal 
attack" encompasses. I should like to see it removed from our discusions.

Once again, Thank you for your post,

Clyde Crockett
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