Sunday, June 1, 2014

Praise Rendered Unto Echoes of the Past

Yesterday, I received some disheartening news: Ripard Teg is ending Jester’s Trek.  This is a terrible loss, both personally and for the Eve commentary community at large.  Words fail to express my sorrow now to start up my phone and read Jester’s Trek every morning.

Quite simply, Ripard’s mind was keen, filled with wisdom, knowledge, and experience, and he expressed himself with a style and tone that lent itself to receptive comprehension.  I found him to be measured and quite accurate, most of the time.

Sure, he had a number of regular posts that I didn’t care for… his evil alter ego Garth, the COTW and image of the week, for instance… but even excluding them, his writing was prolific, insightful, and well-informed.  More often than not, those who disagreed with him in comments revealed more about the flaws in their own thinking than in his.

Naturally, I didn’t agree with everything he said, but I found in him a rational mind capable of rising beyond his own perspective, something sorely lacking in Eve.  That’s the reason I voted for him on CSM 8, and I never once regretted that decision.

Happily, he’ll still remain in Eve, but I don’t doubt that his regular voice is forever silenced.  He stated as much that his blog was originally a plan to promote his CSM run.  Having concluded it successfully and expressing no desire to do so again, I doubt we’ll see his opinions often enough to consider him “back”.

And that’s a very bad thing.

When you argue with someone, it’s in your best interests to focus on points of argumentation, attacking the position, not the person.  Ripard knew this, though many (but not all) of those who disagreed with him did not.  Regardless of your stance on his positions, the greater dialogue within the Eve community is lesser for his adherence to the rules of argument no longer mattering to it.

So, Ripard, I salute you.  I’d like to say I wish you’d have stayed around to continue the good fight as you saw it, but Eve is, after a game.  No one’s family will be massacred if one faction “wins”, no one will be taxed to death, and no one’s liberties will be lost.  Each of us can simply choose to spend our time elsewhere.

When rational people who debate positions, rather than destroying persons, decide you’re not worth engaging, you should take notice.  As with the comments on Ripard’s blog, it reflects more on us than it does on him.

Ripard, I will miss you. 

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