Are you opposed to eating oysters? - Page 4 - VeggieBoards
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#91 Old 06-23-2012, 02:20 AM
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I just don't eat bodies. I wouldn't eat roadkill, I wouldn't eat a brain dead human and I wouldn't eat an oyster. I wouldn't count anyone as vegan or even vegetarian who did these things. I know I can live a long, happy, healthy life without eating the body (and oysters have a heart, blood, kidneys, sex organs, nerves and muscles) of anything dead or living so that's what I'll do. And for others that might want to start going down the slippery slope of eating meat because they think that the animal it comes from can't feel, I wouldn't support that for numerous reasons.

There are a lot of things scientists can't yet measure and scientists are often wrong, so for as long as oysters have natural defence mechanisms, as long as they respond to chemicals with movement (they twitch when lemon juice is sprinkled on them), and as long it is not in the interest of their species for them to be eaten, I will assume that oysters have an interest in being alive. For all we know oysters might feel pain- for a long time people thought fish couldnt feel pain. I quite like this article about it: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/marc-bekoff/vegans-shouldnt-eat-oyste_b_605786.html as it pretty much sums up how I feel.

I think some people have decided they are going to eat oysters and there is not much that anyone can say to dissuade them, so I won't waste time trying as there are other people who eat the standard diet and have been institutionalised and desensitised to meat, milk, eggs etc through growing up eating it and if I was going to try and change anyone's mind my energy would be better focused there. However, if someone who ate oysters tried to call themselves vegan or vegetarian I would take a stand against that and defend the etymology of a plant based lifestyle. We dont eat bodies. Get your own word. I also think it sends a very bad message to omnis to have someone say "I'm vegan but I eat oysters". This is going to make people think that there is some reason a plan based diet isn't good enough. It's also a slippery slope. If oysters are ok what about clams which have the same kind of anatomy but which can move quite quickly through water and even burrow into sand- Which they do to escape predators. So you could easily end up with something that actually runs and hides to avoid you eating them on the menu.
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#92 Old 06-23-2012, 02:22 AM
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Originally Posted by Cato View Post

 

Thanks for letting me know about the other brainless animals.

Better look at the environmental impact of eating other bivalves.  For example, scallops are generally a bad choice in terms of the environment (they are most often harvested by trawling the ocean floor, which is a disaster for the other animals who live there) and depriving other sea life of nourishment.


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#93 Old 06-23-2012, 03:44 AM
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You can add anencephalic infants to that list as well.
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A baby born with anencephaly is usually blind, deaf, unconscious, and unable to feel pain.
So, I guess if scientists agree that anencephalic infants feel no pain, you'll have a main course to go along with your oysters.


Are you suggesting you think we should keep anencephalic infants alive? Or are you suggesting that it's not the death part that bothers you, but the eating part? Either position I find strange.

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#94 Old 06-23-2012, 03:47 AM
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Quote: Originally Posted by whisper  You can add anencephalic infants to that list as well. Quote: A baby born with anencephaly is usually blind, deaf, unconscious, and unable to feel pain. So, I guess if scientists agree that anencephalic infants feel no pain, you'll have a main course to go along with your oysters. Are you suggesting you think we should keep anencephalic infants alive? Or are you suggesting that it's not the death part that bothers you, but the eating part? Either position I find strange.
It is extremely rare for an anencephalic baby to survive birth. There isn't really any brain to speak of.
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#95 Old 06-23-2012, 03:53 AM
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It is extremely rare for an anencephalic baby to survive birth. There isn't really any brain to speak of.

Then I'm not sure what the point of bringing them up was. It seemed to be to imply that killing them would be wrong.

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#96 Old 06-23-2012, 05:22 AM
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This is why it's difficult to have this discussion here. I dunno how much we are permitted to say in favor of Cato's argument. I essentially agree with it, but I don't eat oysters (just not for ethical reasons). I also would not be opposed to eating meat produced in a lab if it was done without harming any animals.

And I don't meant to squash any real discussion.  But when a brand new member apparently joins just to discuss a rather divisive subject (which we have seen before), red flags go off. 


It is our choices that show what we truly are far more than our abilities. ~A. Dumbledore
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#97 Old 06-23-2012, 05:31 AM
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And I am not so sure that it is the extremely small doubt keeping many of us from eating them. It might have more to do with dogma and we use the doubt as a pretense (that would include myself) to fool to ourselves and others. I find that possible. Possibly we like the satisfaction of suffering for righteousness and are unwilling to give up the suffering even if righteousness no longer demands it (possibly true for me as well). Not intended to offend anyone!

 

 

Thank goodness most of us aren't in this for the righteous satisfaction of suffering. Choosing not to eat oysters, or pigs, or cows or brain-dead pets is not suffering at all!  One of the wonderful aspects of being vegan is that is is liberating and creative.  I choose not to eat certain things, and I'm frankly happy with my decision.  I am certainly not suffering because I don't eat oysters.


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#98 Old 06-23-2012, 05:46 AM
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one problem with eating oysters and calling yourself vegan is that if enough people did it then the food industry may start including it in vegan food.

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#99 Old 06-23-2012, 07:36 AM
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If oysters can't feel, why do they form pearls around foreign bits of matter that get in and, so I was taught, irritate their flesh?

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#100 Old 06-23-2012, 08:15 AM
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Thank goodness most of us aren't in this for the righteous satisfaction of suffering. Choosing not to eat oysters, or pigs, or cows or brain-dead pets is not suffering at all!  One of the wonderful aspects of being vegan is that is is liberating and creative.  I choose not to eat certain things, and I'm frankly happy with my decision.  I am certainly not suffering because I don't eat oysters.

:)

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#101 Old 06-23-2012, 09:35 AM
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It is extremely rare for an anencephalic baby to survive birth. There isn't really any brain to speak of.

Then I'm not sure what the point of bringing them up was. It seemed to be to imply that killing them would be wrong.

I don't think whoever brought them up knew that anencephalic infants can't survive outside the uterus, so I just thought I'd throw it out there. Maybe the discussion will move on from eating babies? tongue3.gif

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#102 Old 06-23-2012, 09:59 AM
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If oysters can't feel, why do they form pearls around foreign bits of matter that get in and, so I was taught, irritate their flesh?



Responding to their environment, just like how when our skin gets hot and irritated by the sun, we tan. But our skin isn't conscious.


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#103 Old 06-23-2012, 10:21 AM
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Sorry if this sounds really dim (but hey, if you don't ask you'll never know!), why are oysters classed as animals not plants, if they're not sentient?

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#104 Old 06-23-2012, 10:37 AM
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Sorry if this sounds really dim (but hey, if you don't ask you'll never know!), why are oysters classed as animals not plants, if they're not sentient?


Well we don't really know if they are sentient, so I suppose that's the problem. undecided.gif I find it highly unlikely that they would be though. It would also be weird to classify a shell creature as a plant O___o Plant is more like cellulose, photosynthesis and the like xD


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#105 Old 06-23-2012, 11:13 AM
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Responding to their environment, just like how when our skin gets hot and irritated by the sun, we tan. But our skin isn't conscious.


An oyster won't take measures, whether purposeful or automatic, to alleviate an unpleasant sensation unless it has the ability to experience irritation. If it couldn't feel the foreign body it wouldn't react to it by secreting the nacre to smooth out the jagged bit of sand. If its flesh is sensitive to irritation, it has the ability to experience sensation. To feel.

 

 

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Sorry if this sounds really dim (but hey, if you don't ask you'll never know!), why are oysters classed as animals not plants, if they're not sentient?

 

Animal cells have several differences from plant cells. http://www.diffen.com/difference/Animal_Cell_vs_Plant_Cell

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#106 Old 06-23-2012, 11:24 AM
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An oyster won't take measures, whether purposeful or automatic, to alleviate an unpleasant sensation unless it has the ability to experience irritation. If it couldn't feel the foreign body it wouldn't react to it by secreting the nacre to smooth out the jagged bit of sand. If its flesh is sensitive to irritation, it has the ability to experience sensation. To feel.

 

 

 

Animal cells have several differences from plant cells. http://www.diffen.com/difference/Animal_Cell_vs_Plant_Cell


As far as I'm aware, you need a brain in order to experience pain or to feel. In the end though, I don't really think anyone can speak so much for them. Nobody is 100% sure. With bigger animals it's easier to tell what they experience.


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#107 Old 06-23-2012, 12:10 PM
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Thanks for the source. That is useful. Even plants have different parts and I don't think there are many plants who would "want" to get eaten. By that I mean it does not help their survival or reproduction to get eaten. The doubt that oysters might feel pain will affect my decision. If the chance of them being conscious and feeling became as likely as for plants then if vegans still claimed moral superiority to those who ate oysters would be discriminating against plants. I don't know the level of the doubt though.

I disagree with the author that even if there is no pain or consciousness factory farms are not ok. Then stop agriculture!

 

 

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I just don't eat bodies. I wouldn't eat roadkill, I wouldn't eat a brain dead human and I wouldn't eat an oyster. I wouldn't count anyone as vegan or even vegetarian who did these things. I know I can live a long, happy, healthy life without eating the body (and oysters have a heart, blood, kidneys, sex organs, nerves and muscles) of anything dead or living so that's what I'll do. And for others that might want to start going down the slippery slope of eating meat because they think that the animal it comes from can't feel, I wouldn't support that for numerous reasons.
There are a lot of things scientists can't yet measure and scientists are often wrong, so for as long as oysters have natural defence mechanisms, as long as they respond to chemicals with movement (they twitch when lemon juice is sprinkled on them), and as long it is not in the interest of their species for them to be eaten, I will assume that oysters have an interest in being alive. For all we know oysters might feel pain- for a long time people thought fish couldnt feel pain. I quite like this article about it: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/marc-bekoff/vegans-shouldnt-eat-oyste_b_605786.html as it pretty much sums up how I feel.
I think some people have decided they are going to eat oysters and there is not much that anyone can say to dissuade them, so I won't waste time trying as there are other people who eat the standard diet and have been institutionalised and desensitised to meat, milk, eggs etc through growing up eating it and if I was going to try and change anyone's mind my energy would be better focused there. However, if someone who ate oysters tried to call themselves vegan or vegetarian I would take a stand against that and defend the etymology of a plant based lifestyle. We dont eat bodies. Get your own word. I also think it sends a very bad message to omnis to have someone say "I'm vegan but I eat oysters". This is going to make people think that there is some reason a plan based diet isn't good enough. It's also a slippery slope. If oysters are ok what about clams which have the same kind of anatomy but which can move quite quickly through water and even burrow into sand- Which they do to escape predators. So you could easily end up with something that actually runs and hides to avoid you eating them on the menu.
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#108 Old 06-23-2012, 12:11 PM
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Yes I would. It would take much more research for me to consider eating them and I would have to get unanimous answers that they are no more likely to feel pain than plants.

 

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Better look at the environmental impact of eating other bivalves.  For example, scallops are generally a bad choice in terms of the environment (they are most often harvested by trawling the ocean floor, which is a disaster for the other animals who live there) and depriving other sea life of nourishment.

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#109 Old 06-23-2012, 12:14 PM
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I needed the moral compass and knowledge of other vegans. So I came to a vegan forum to get it. If you have no desire to participate don't.

 

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And I don't meant to squash any real discussion.  But when a brand new member apparently joins just to discuss a rather divisive subject (which we have seen before), red flags go off. 

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#110 Old 06-23-2012, 12:18 PM
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Less variety is either misery or equality (for those who did not like the products they avoid). Given that there are very few vegans who become vegan out of food preference I would say veganism very often implies some suffering where taste is concerned.

 

 

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Thank goodness most of us aren't in this for the righteous satisfaction of suffering. Choosing not to eat oysters, or pigs, or cows or brain-dead pets is not suffering at all!  One of the wonderful aspects of being vegan is that is is liberating and creative.  I choose not to eat certain things, and I'm frankly happy with my decision.  I am certainly not suffering because I don't eat oysters.

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#111 Old 06-23-2012, 12:24 PM
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And I don't meant to squash any real discussion.  But when a brand new member apparently joins just to discuss a rather divisive subject (which we have seen before), red flags go off. 

 

Which is understandable considering we've had some trolls here in the past. I actually recall that shortly after I joined VB I brought up the subject of brainless animals (among other things) as a point of debate. It was in part because I find discussing and debating controversial subjects interesting and enjoyable. In retrospect I think I was a bit overly combative and I can understand why seeing people arguing that it might be okay to eat certain animals would rub people the wrong way on a veg*n support forum. I think my thread was moved to the compost heap at that time.

 

So yeah, in sum Cato doesn't strike me as a troll since he reminds me of myself shortly after I first joined, but I can also understand some of the negative reactions considering this is being argued on a vegan support forum.

 

All in all I don't see it as a huge issue since the vast majority of animal exploitation is done to animals who have brains and it's easiest for me to just draw my line at "animals". It could perhaps be an important issue to think about when it comes to debating omnivores, though, because I often run into the "how do you know plants don't suffer?" argument.

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#112 Old 06-23-2012, 12:29 PM
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This is from wikipedia (search for sensor):

All living organisms contain biological sensors with functions similar to those of the mechanical devices described. Most of these are specialized cells that are sensitive to:

 

Since plants also have sensors I am not sure I would count that particularly in favour of the oysters.

 

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An oyster won't take measures, whether purposeful or automatic, to alleviate an unpleasant sensation unless it has the ability to experience irritation. If it couldn't feel the foreign body it wouldn't react to it by secreting the nacre to smooth out the jagged bit of sand. If its flesh is sensitive to irritation, it has the ability to experience sensation. To feel.

 

 

 

Animal cells have several differences from plant cells. http://www.diffen.com/difference/Animal_Cell_vs_Plant_Cell

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#113 Old 06-23-2012, 12:29 PM
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Less variety is either misery or equality (for those who did not like the products they avoid). Given that there are very few vegans who become vegan out of food preference I would say veganism very often implies some suffering where taste is concerned.

 

What's more common, I think, is for taste preferences to change over time. I didn't resolve to stop eating candy, for example, but realized one day that it had been months since I'd eaten any. Similar course of events for fast food, for omelets, for cream in my coffee. The more good stuff I eat, the more it crowds out the bad stuff. New (to me) vegetables and grains, new kinds of beans, new spices and combinations all add up to more variety instead of less. Back when I was capable of choking down an oyster, it took hot sauce, lemon juice and beer to make it even possible. Or, if cooked, it needed to be wrapped in bacon. Now the idea is completely revolting and I no longer have to play along and be a good sport about it. So suffering is pretty much going in the opposite direction. If I ever miss oyster, wheat gluten can be pretty transparent, slimy and gelatinous when prepared a certain way. Gluten shots with beer, sign me up!

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#114 Old 06-23-2012, 12:34 PM
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I used to eat oysters when I ate meat.

 

Have you ever taken a bite of oyster and then looked at its insides???  It looks NASTY.  I never ate them again.
 

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#115 Old 06-23-2012, 12:35 PM
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When I smell meat being cooked I still get urges for it after four years of veganism. But I don't give it a second thought as eating it would imply suffering and killing someone who wants to live. Still the desire is there.

 

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What's more common, I think, is for taste preferences to change over time. I didn't resolve to stop eating candy, for example, but realized one day that it had been months since I'd eaten any. Similar course of events for fast food, for omelets, for cream in my coffee. The more good stuff I eat, the more it crowds out the bad stuff. New vegetables, new kinds of beans, new spices and combinations all add up to more variety instead of less. Back when I was capable of choking down an oyster, it took hot sauce, lemon juice and beer to make it even possible. Or, if cooked, it needed to be wrapped in bacon. Now the idea is completely revolting and I no longer have to play along and be a good sport about it. So suffering is pretty much going in the opposite direction. If I ever miss oyster, seitan can be pretty transparent, slimy and gelatinous when prepared a certain way and not thoroughly cooked. Seitan shots with beer, sign me up!

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#116 Old 06-23-2012, 12:38 PM
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I needed the moral compass of vegans and their knowledge so I came to a vegan forum to get it. If that makes me a troll, I don't care :p

 

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Which is understandable considering we've had some trolls here in the past. I actually recall that shortly after I joined VB I brought up the subject of brainless animals (among other things) as a point of debate. It was in part because I find discussing and debating controversial subjects interesting and enjoyable. In retrospect I think I was a bit overly combative and I can understand why seeing people arguing that it might be okay to eat certain animals would rub people the wrong way on a veg*n support forum. I think my thread was moved to the compost heap at that time.

 

So yeah, in sum Cato doesn't strike me as a troll since he reminds me of myself shortly after I first joined, but I can also understand some of the negative reactions considering this is being argued on a vegan support forum.

 

All in all I don't see it as a huge issue since the vast majority of animal exploitation is done to animals who have brains and it's easiest for me to just draw my line at "animals". It could perhaps be an important issue to think about when it comes to debating omnivores, though, because I often run into the "how do you know plants don't suffer?" argument.

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#117 Old 06-23-2012, 12:47 PM
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An oyster won't take measures, whether purposeful or automatic, to alleviate an unpleasant sensation unless it has the ability to experience irritation. If it couldn't feel the foreign body it wouldn't react to it by secreting the nacre to smooth out the jagged bit of sand. If its flesh is sensitive to irritation, it has the ability to experience sensation. To feel.

 

 

 

Animal cells have several differences from plant cells. http://www.diffen.com/difference/Animal_Cell_vs_Plant_Cell

 

I think it's pertinent to avoid conflating "sensing" (i.e. reacting to external or internal stimuli) with "experience" (i.e. mental states).

 

There is a tree who's leaves are sought after as food by caterpillars. When a caterpillar begins to eat the leaves of the tree, the tree excretes an odor into the air. This odor attracts a certain a certain species of wasps who prey on caterpillars. Thus the tree, in a manner of speaking, senses the attack on its leaves and takes measures to combat the attack. But evolution working the way it does, adaptive mechanisms like this can come about with or without any mental/psychological factors coming into play. Just as our own body will work to heal wounds to our skin "on its own" regardless of whether they consciously hurt. Or as machines such as smoke detectors sense and react to the environment presumably without consciousness or thinking. 

 

If we assume that oysters take the measures you describe for the purpose of alleviating an unpleasant feeling, then it seems we would already be assuming that oysters are conscious (because "unpleasant" implies that it is unpleasant by the oyster's standards and so that means it would have to have a conscious subjectivity). I think the other explanation would be that the reason it takes measures to smooth out the jagged sand is because it is adaptive to do so and/or was adaptive for its evolutionary ancestors to do so and therefore those that smoothed out the sand were more likely to live and reproduce than those who did not.

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#118 Old 06-23-2012, 12:51 PM
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I needed the moral compass of vegans and their knowledge so I came to a vegan forum to get it. If that makes me a troll, I don't care :p

 

Hopefully you don't think I was calling you one. I argued the opposite, in fact.

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#119 Old 06-23-2012, 12:55 PM
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LOL You guys are all funny. popcorn.gif

 

"The people who know the least are the ones who can speak the most"  Just something to think about :)


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#120 Old 06-23-2012, 12:55 PM
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No no I did not misunderstand it and I appreciate it. Thank you.

 

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Hopefully you don't think I was calling you one. I argued the opposite, in fact.

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