by Max Brantley
Mark Elrod, the Harding University poli sci prof, is taking his good blog private. He writes:
I know this creates an inconvenience for many of you and I apologize but I’ve come to the realization that I have over-estimated the capacity of both my academic (Harding University) and my religious (Church of Christ) community to deal with critical thinking or dissent in a public forum. In the last few weeks, I’ve grown tired with dealing with members of both communities who seem to view the world in black and white terms and think of all discussions as zero-sum games.
In short, I’d rather have a quiet, private discussion with friends than public arguments with anonymous critics who would rather run to my employer with complaints about something I said than trying to discuss it with me in a reasonable and rational manner.
He elaborated in a subsequent post:
For the record, I was not “pressured” by anybody to change my blog from “public” to “private” status.
I made this decision on my own as the result of the general frustration I have with members of our fellowship who want to make a spiritual judgment about me based on my political views.
One of those views is my public support for Barack Obama for president.
If it's any comfort to Elrod: those who try to shout down opposing views can be found all over the political spectrum, as comments on the presidential race here readily attest.