A Note About Forum Guidelines

Dear Figmenters,

We would just like to take this time to explain a few of our guidelines about participating in the forums.

Figment is a site for everyone to participate in, no matter his or her beliefs. We encourage you to express yourselves not only through your writing, but through discussion as well. We love the way Figmenters gather in the forums to discuss ideas, the events of the day, or just about anything random. It’s even okay to discuss difficult topics and respectfully disagree with one another, and the vast majority of you do this wonderfully.

We do have certain guidelines that we expect Figment members to follow and we think they’re pretty straightforward. The guidelines state that you must treat all members of the community with respect, even if you disagree with their beliefs. When responding to a comment on the forums that you don’t agree with, discuss it without trashing or attacking the person. Phrase your response in a constructive and respectful way. Derogatory, mean, and inflammatory language or comments aimed at a specific user, or a group of people, will be deleted. If we have to delete a lot of your comments and keep sending you warnings, but you keep attacking other Figmenters, it’s possible that your account will be deleted. We never delete posts, threads or users frivolously. We carefully examine all the threads and comments involved, and make a decision based on what we see. We never delete things based on a user’s beliefs — we delete them based on their behavior towards other Figmenters.

Should you see something that is offensive, nasty or questionable, or feel that something is just not right, please contact a moderator. You can always reach a moderator at Info@Figment.com.

Thanks, everyone!

The Figment Team

One thought on “A Note About Forum Guidelines

  1. That is powerful and thanks so much for sharing. I was cautious and lucky growing up and coming to terms with being gay, I guess. I would like to share my most horrifying experience in that reagrd.

    When I was about 20 years old, I did witness and was somewhat involved in an USAF investigation of alleged lesbians in the WAF squadron on McCord AFB in 1967.

    I thought I was in love with (maybe I was-I certainly wanted to be at the time) a WAF named Joyce. She was a lovely person, inside and out and I felt a strong connection to her. During our brief period of dating, she met a woman on a city of Tacoma softball team during a tournament and fell in love with her. I was devastated, told my best friend and his girl friend (also a WAF) about it.

    I was unaware of the fact that the WAF squadron commander was suspected of being a lesbian. Also, I had friends and acquaintances in the WAF squadron who were suspected of being or were (I know because they were guardedly open with me about it) lesbians.

    Long story short, it was an awful witch burning kind of thing; the WAF commander, Joyce and some others were kicked out of the USAF. During the investigation (building the foundation for the bonfire) I was summoned (ordered, sort of supenoed) by the OSI (Office of Special Investigations) because I had been reported (by my friend’s girlfriend) of having material knowledge about the lesbian goings on in the WAF squadron. I didn’t, only had a broken heart and ego because Joyce had rejected me and found love elsewhere, who happened to be a woman.

    But, they questioned me under a hot light bulb for 4 hours and ordered me to return a next morning with a written account of everything I had ever heard, seen, thought or imagined about lesbians in the WAF squadron. I was provided with a new, legal-sized yellow pad and a pencil to do so. I followed orders and returned it the next day. I don’t remember what I wrote but, recall that I was up all night writing many pages, following orders.

    The entire experience was brutal, hateful and hurtful. I don’t know what happened to Joyce except that she and some others in the WAF squadron were discharged under “Other than Honorable Conditions”. My statement was attached to her discharge documents (and perhaps to those of any of the other women I may have mentioned in my sincere attempt t follow orders).

    The Chief Master Sargent (CMS) in charge of the discharge area of personnel found my statement so entertaining that he read it to his staff. Since McCord was the processing point for many airmen from Alaska being similarly separated from the military, the CMS probably got his daily kicks from reading those particular kinds of discharge documents.

    One individual who worked in that area knew me and shared what had happened.

    That was insult following injury. I was enraged, incredibly confused, hurt, devastated and embarrassed to and because Joyce had certainly received a copy of my statement in her documents. I complained bitterly to my non commissioned officer in charge who found the CMS’s behavior appalling. He reported it to our squadron’s commanding officer who sent it up the chain of command.

    It is significant to note that I had no first hand information nor had I personally witnessed any military codes
    tbeing violated. My entire scope was hearsay and second hand. I later learned that what I provided was not material and should not have been attached to anyone’s discharge.

    I heard that the McCord AFB OSI office had some staffing changes. I hope someone learned something from the experience.

    It certainly brought my own doubts and insecurities about myself (sexuality included) to the surface. I sought counseling at my own expense (difficult on an enlisted Airman’s pay) with a non-military psychiatrist. That’s another story – he was certainly a gay man and read my situation right off the bat. But, he was caring, sensitive and helpful. He sort of told me, “…it gets better”.

    It did for me.

    I hope it did for Joyce and the thousands and thousands of other military folks who endured that treatment before and after that awful period in our lives.

    Gil

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