Guidelines For Discussing Legitmate Issues Where Food And Politics Meet
Another thread locked up while trying to raise a legitimate issue (and I notice some very reasonable and thoughtful responses have been deleted as well), so I guess we'll address it one post per new thread at a time.
Regarding political discussion on a food thread, here's the policy over at LTHForum, a Chicago-centric food site (For those who don't know as they read this, Chicago is located in Cook County):
Sometimes food conversations have political or religious implications. We don't want to stifle talk that brings in that larger world, but there comes a point where a discussion leaves the road of culinary chat and takes off for a completely different destination—at which point it belongs on a completely different board. So here's a pocket guide:
--Talking about a mayor who cooks killer waffles is good.
--Talking about a mayor who kills waffle cookers is starting to drift.
--Talking about a mayor who waffles on killings in Cook County is off-topic.
Let me suggest that all Roadfood posters follow this guide in posting, and all Roadfood moderators follow its suggested level of tolerance for those posts.
The thread at issue was posted in the Professional's Forum. It related to a political action retaliating against a business owner's outspoken personal moral code. Granted, it was a very specific situation, but the overarching question; is it okay (or even legal for that matter) for civic actions to either punish or reward a business based on issues that are protected by the First Amendment, was relevant and on topic to the professional restaurateurs who populate that forum.
Random politics shouldn't be allowed on a site dedicated to food. But on those few legitimate occasions where politics and food meet, there should be a healthy, objective discussion of the facts and ideas surrounding the case.