Conservapedia:Should an encyclopedia simply present readers with the factual evidence on issues?

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YES

Since you don't believe in this side, I'll take it from here. I believe it is insulting to the readership of an encyclopedia to tell them what they should think. Of course there are some situations where it is hard to establish the exact facts, in which case the opinions of authorities on both sides of the issue should be quoted. However the author of an article should not be entitled to include their own personal view, since this undermines the credibility of the whole article. --Kelpan 14:07, 26 May 2007 (EDT)

NO

Often most of the problem is finding out what the facts are. --Ed Poor 13:59, 26 May 2007 (EDT)

Actually, the problem you guys face is that the facts frequently don't jibe with the bill of goods you hope to sell your students, like "The Puritans rejected slavery" (They did not) "Margaret Chase Smith's 'Declaration of Conscience' was an attack on the Democratic Party" (It was an attack on McCarthy and McCarthyism) and "the Democratic Party opposed the Civil Rights Movement" (a blatant attempt to conflate a small wing of the Democratic party with the party itself.) That's why you are answering "no," Ed. Like Stephen Colbert says, you feel that reality has a liberal bias. --PF Fox 19:56, 26 May 2007 (EDT)
  • I agree with the idea that someone would be selling a bill of goods if he said, "The Puritans rejected slavery." I read a short history of early Cambridge and Boston in which the Pilgrim Fathers (your Puritans?) enslaved some local Indians. We also know that the Salem Witch Trials stemmed in part from some folk tales a Caribbean slave told to a couple of little girls. So that is two historical references to "Puritans" owning slaves.
  • But is this not a straw man? I don't know of any article here making a blanket statement that the Puritans rejected slavery. If there is one, either correct (and then let me know) - or tell me which protected page it's on, and let me know, so I can correct it.
  • Secondly, you are confusing "fact" with "conclusion" in your 'Conscience' example. A fact would be that Smith made a certain statement. A conclusion would be that the statement amounted to an attack on Dems or McC. --Ed Poor 06:57, 27 May 2007 (EDT)
On this site, the problem is keeping the facts on the page--the worst enemy of truth is the zealot, and this place seems to have a surplus of zealots with over-active 'delete' keys. --Ghoti 20:01, 26 May 2007 (EDT)
"The Puritans rejected slavery" was precisely what Andrew Schlafley told us in his first American History Lecture, which, even after the truth was pointed out, still contrives to give students the impression that the Massachussetts Bay Colony, the primary trader of slaves in the colonies during the 17th Century, opposed slavery. It is not merely a "conclusion" that Chase Smith's "Declaration of Conscience" was an attack on McCarthy and McCarthyism. That's exactly what it was, and was recognized as such at the time. Have you even bothered to read it, or the history around it? And claiming, as one person has, that the Democratic Party opposed the 1965 Voting Rights Act is an outright lie, a deliberate attempt to conflate one wing of the party, the Southern Democrats with the party itself. Another lie is the claim in another article (now locked to prevent any corrections) that Lenin coined the term "concentration camp."
Yes, indeed, the worst enemy of truth is the zealot. Conservapedia, with its claims like "Albert Gore Sr. voted against the 1965 Voting Rights Act" and "Early Jamestown operated under a socialistic system" and even the editor who has tried to justify removing any attempt to apply the term "right wing" to the Nazis by claiming that the Weimar Republic ended in 1939 proves it. Your conception of truth has very little to do with facts. --PF Fox 11:32, 27 May 2007 (EDT)