2005-02-21

Rudeness instead of arguments

Margot Wallström, vice president of the Union, has entered the blogosphere. In her own down-to-earth way, she writes about a day in the life of a Commissioner. What does she do, whom does she meet, what makes her tick? She and I have probably never voted for the same party in Swedish elections and I disagree with her on many issues, for instance about the Kyoto protocol which was the topic of a recent blog entry. But her kind of leadership style is accessible, personal, inspiring and it’s just what the Union needs.

Wallström has decided to make her blog open to comments. There are plenty already. I followed the thread about Kyoto for a while and I found it saddening. Several remarks are without substance on the issue, written in an insulting, even hostile tone. Rudeness instead of arguments, where does that take the debate? Can an unmoderated public forum maintain a civilized tone?

Just like any dedicated professional, Margot Wallström deserves respect for her work. Those who are unable to debate the issues should have the decency to abstain from turning an open forum into abuse and verbal vandalism.
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