It’s kinda sad when the people who say they stand for an open discourse, free speech, academic inquiry, rational debate, etc., are the first ones to yell “SHUT UP” when they are exposed to opinions and arguments they don’t have a prepackaged response to.

Here is a typical exchange I have experienced over and over again on various forums.

Person A: Well obviously “traditional Islam’s” position on X is wrong, unjust, stupid, barbaric, etc., because of Y.

Me: Well actually, Y is nothing more than an unfounded assumption and as a matter of fact, your position suffers from this logical error and this fallacy, etc., and in comparison, the standard Islamic position on X is far more reasonable and compelling.

Person A: OMG stop attacking me!

Me: I’m attacking you? You just got finished calling my beliefs unjust, stupid, and barbaric. I was just trying to…

Person A: You’re not nuanced enough and you clearly haven’t read X, Y, Z books.

Me: Actually, I’m aware of those books and I don’t see how they’re relevant to the…

Person A: You’re just an ISIS apologist! I can’t believe you are defending ISIS! Don’t you know mullahs are doing X, Y, Z crimes in Pakistan?! My cousin was abused by a religious uncle, for God’s sake!

Me: …uh, no I don’t condone ISIS or any of those abuses. Not sure how any of that is relevant to what I am…

Person A: I don’t have time for this. I’m ignoring you because you’re not worth my time.

Me: Ok, but just for the record, if we go back to the question at hand…

Person A: SHUT UP

Thus concludes another productive discussion in the world of free, enlightened academic discourse.