Yes, it is reasonable to take action of your own accord, on something which you believe is true and valid. It is not reasonable to try to coerce others into taking similar action because of your personal belief, and it is certainly not reasonable to defame and denounce others who do not believe what you believe.
I'm sure we can agree on that.
MLK, who was a practised orator, used an inspirational style of speaking, focusing on well-chosen emphases, pregnant pauses, and emotional declarations of his personal beliefs. He did not at any time imply that his audience was "evil". His punchy style was just that, a style. A black man's potent style of speech.
He never stooped to emotional blackmail, utilising gimmicks like "little girl's tears" to win points. If he had done that, his audience would rightly have concluded that it was "all about him". And that's another sign that the little girl's speech was just acting - it sounded like it was "all about her". As her actor parents probably coached her to do, she put herself into the part. "I shouldn't be here!" "I should be at school!", "You have stolen my dreams!" etc etc etc, all while glancing down at the screenplay for her cues. As quickly as the tears and petulant grimaces appeared, they vanished when she got her applause.
The bottom line, for me, is this. IF this story is all true, and IF the world is in critical danger, I would think the people who want people to know about it would select someone more credible than a 16 year-old movie star wanna-be, who obviously lacks the emotional self-discipline to refrain from insolently hurling insults at a room full of distinguished adults. That's the behaviour of a spoiled brat who's been given too much indulgence and too much attention.
And if they didn't select her, and her involvement is entirely her own doing, then somebody should quietly take her aside and tell her some down-to-earth truths. Truths about diplomacy, courtesy to others, personal restraint, personal insight, and personal integrity. I think the surreptitious enjoyment of her moment of fame is confusing those truths in her mind.
I think if you really believe something it is acceptable to try to sway others to your side. That's like saying that if you believe there's a corrupt politician, you shouldn't try to get people to vote for the other guy because that would influence them. Influencing people is much of communication. Now, if you mean coerce dishonestly (lie to them, cheat them), that's different. But if you're fighting for a cause, I say go ahead and try to sway with argument. Penn Jillette said he didn't mind being proselytized because it meant the person really cared about him.
So, on that last point: don't demean and defame, yes, we agree 100%. Should Thunberg have called her audience out during her speech? I don't know. I'm reminded of the Bible story where Nathan confronts David and David is convicted on that reproach. It could be an effective tactic. Maybe not. I feel about this the way I do about calling somebody bad names in the newspaper. If it's not true, it's libel. If it is true, it's fair.
I'm not convinced the tears are gimmicks. If you've ever given a charged speech, you'll know that the shaky, nervous energy delivering the speech can become a cracking voice, sped-up speech, or tears, or anything (although a skilled orator can eliminate traces of nerves). That energy can just as quickly dissipate into laughter or a smile once the adrenaline rush is over. I imagine these types of reactions are more difficult to gauge or control in an autistic teenager.
Now, was she coached? I'm certain. Was she "acting"? I don't know. If she was, it was to get over her speech, which I don't fault her for. Again: if you care about something, you want to try to forward that cause.
You emphasize "if" very strongly. Do you not think we should be cleaning up the earth?
If she was selected, she was well-selected: she is popular and drawing a tonne of attention to the movement. Lots of people are getting into the climate change thing because of this. That's what they're looking for.
Mature adults use rational debate and polite persuasion to sway others. They're careful to avoid overt emotion because they know it may undermine them and their message. Intelligent people, no matter how passionate they are about their stand, will take care to show respect for the people they're trying to sway. If they don't, they'll lose the audience and the argument. As grown-ups they've learned that.
That child not only showed blatant disrespect for everyone in the room, she also revealed a rather unpleasant personal contempt. The silly, "How dare you" remark was just embarrassing. An obvious scripted line, not spontaneous, an empty rhetorical question not expecting an answer. Spoken for theatrical effect. An honest person would be too embarrassed to use the line.
"..story where Nathan confronts David and David is convicted on that reproach."
I don't understand what you meant there.
Badmouthing people, even justifiably, is not prudent or necessary. Because if a bad name is deserved, everybody already knows it is.
Those "tears" were like the rehearsal of a bad actor, playing them on-and-off for effect. I'd ask you to watch the speech again and note her face when she looks down at her script. That's not relieved tension after applause, that's checking to see what her next line and next facial expression will be. In those brief moments she turns it off, then turns it on again. She's actually quite disciplined in that. No autistic element there.
"Do you not think we should be cleaning up the earth?"
Logical fallacy. We're arguing about Thunberg's legitimacy, not my opinion about the state of the earth.
True, many people are into the climate change thing because of that speech. But I'd guess that a lot of people are sceptics now who weren't before.
And it doesn't matter if some people are thoroughly convinced and totally committed now. Because the end result of the Thunberg pantomime will be precisely zero. Nothing that anyone does will make the slightest difference, and not a thing will be achieved, and the inspired enthusiasm will go the way of all artificially-created "commitments to a cause". They go out of fashion. This one in particular will fade faster than usual, because people, (even people who are credulous enough to believe that the "spectacles" that they see on television are genuine and spontaneous), nevertheless still possess the natural ability to read body language.
The best way to make a solid argument is intellect and reason, I agree. But appeals to emotion have proven very effective. Demonstrating care with both is a solid way to present. But, yes, I basically agree.
Mature adults know how to behave with politesse and decorum, definitely. This can be taught to most youth and children as well (with few exceptions). However, mature adult people know when somebody has misbehaved and needs reprimanding, even to the point of insult. Example: "At long last, sir, have you no decency?" spoken to Senator Joe McCarthy. I do not say that Thunberg's audience deserved their drubbing or that she was the one to give it (necessarily). I merely state that it is possible to be a mature adult and give someone a well-aimed drubbing.
I don't really care for the "how dare you", either. I don't think it was an amazingly well-written speech, and I don't think those tactics were the best. Overall, though, I think the speech was effective and accomplished what it wanted, so I can't fault it entirely.
I don't think she was badmouthing. That implies gossip. I think the idea was to hold leaders accountable for leading, in this case, towards a cleaner future.
I rewatched the speech. She just looks like she's reading a speech to me. She doesn't look like she's altering her emotional state between bursts. She looks like an inexperienced speaker getting her next line, which does rattle the psyche somewhat.
Regarding my question: I wasn't asking about your stance on the earth to defend Thunberg. I wasn't using this as an argument. I was curious and wanted to know your position on the subject.
I don't think her speech or attitude were spontaneous nor were they were lies or disingenuous.
The extent of Thunberg remains to be seen. I would be surprised if it maintained its scope for long. But perhaps it will spark something, for Thunberg if no one else. If she continues to strive for a better planet...well, that's at least one.
When I use the term "badmouthing", I meant it as "insulting". We seem to have different definitions for some words. :)
I know you weren't using that question as a specific argument. It's just that I have encountered people in debates sometimes who attempt to win or end arguments by introducing fallacious diversions. This one sounded like one that's commonly known as "Arguing By Emotive Language". You weren't deliberately doing that, as you say, but whenever I spot anything that resembles a fallacy, I pounce on it.
Anyway, Ace, I reckon we've given Greta Thunberg and her speech a fairly even-handed review, wouldn't you agree? I'll sign out, now.
Thank you for clarifying on badmouthing; I had misinterpreted it.
I definitely appreciate where you're coming from with fallacies. Too many people make arguments that ignore the premise or attempt to circumnavigate the argument entirely (with fallacies). That was kinda what inspired me to start commenting on this thread to begin with - the notion that we could dismiss Thunberg because she was a teenager, not because she was making bad points.
I've enjoyed debating with you on this, because I feel like we got to a few places that were more in line with critiques of the speech and the performance, not just writing her off out of hand. I still don't fully know where you're coming from, but I have a pretty good picture, which...that's a big point of dialogue. Thanks for sticking it out for awhile to turn these things over with me.
You're welcome. I enjoyed it.
As to the reference to David...
When King David seduced Bathsheba, got her pregnant, and had her husband killed to cover it up, the prophet Nathan approaches David. Nathan tells David a story about a rich man who takes his poor neighbour's sole lamb and kills it for a feast for a friend of the rich man. David says that the rich man should die and pay for the lamb four-times-over, and Nathan then points out that David is, basically, the rich man. Despite being heavily chastised, David doesn't shoot the messenger, recognising the evils he has done.
Oh yeah, that was Gregory Peck and Susan Hayward, wasn't it?
My religious knowledge is derived solely from Hollywood and Darryl F Zanuck. :)
Peck was only pretending to be Jewish, though.
...or...was that The Gentlemen's Agreement?