"Science" in India

Vidyasankar Sundaresan vsundaresan at HOTMAIL.COM
Sun Oct 22 07:17:51 UTC 2000

>I disagree with your view.  I think Farmer was reasonably civil and
>respectful, though he should have realized he would be poking a stick into
>a beehive.  I think that many of the objections you raise are actually to
>the Outlook article.  Someone who promotes views you disagree with is not,
>thereby, necessarily disrespectful.

I beg to differ. Farmer knew exactly what he was doing when he took it upon
himself to be deliberately snide and insulting. He could have simply posted
the URL of the Outlook article and left it at that. He chose to add his own
remarks to it. There is absolutely no valid reason for him to have made
false generalizations about the overall quality of Indian education. At
least one list member, who is not a scientist/engineer, and who is not an
Indian, thought that Farmer went over the line too.

Dominik, may I point to another instance from not too long ago? On 16 July
2000, you threw Shrisha Rao out of this list, for expressing his own opinion
about a person whom many Indologists anyway like to hate. Lance Cousins
thought you had over-reacted, and Ashok Aklujkar noted that Shrisha had made
several informative contributions in the past. He also hoped that Shrisha
would be allowed to rejoin, but if I know Shrisha right, he would not do so,
even if specifically invited. Now we have Farmer insulting an entire
population and an entire nation, and Samar Abbas piping in, with his own
charmingly unique perspective. And for some strange reason, you feel the
need to defend Farmer's insults as an attempt to "understand" a small number
of people. With all due respect, I am deeply disillusioned. Perhaps this
reaction of mine is only due to my abysmal scientific education, sans
humanistic training, for which I paid less than Rs. 5000 over four years.

Straightforwardly yours,

ps. You do have the option of refusing membership to subscribers, you know.
I wonder why people are allowed to join the list, some of them under two or
three accounts, only to be slapped around for all their interest. Maybe you
should revisit the lurking option. Never works well in mailing lists,
especially if hot topics like non-existent horses are being discussed
regularly, and with great vigor.

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