Mailinglist Archive: opensuse-project (194 mails)

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Re: [opensuse-project] Religious and political views in packages
  • From: Helen South <helen.south@xxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Sun, 11 Sep 2011 08:56:50 +1000
  • Message-id: <>
The packaging guidelines do indeed state that religious texts are not

Therefore, I assume that at some point there has been discussion (no
doubt at length) by the project over this matter. Perhaps someone can
reference this decision?

If members want this guideline to be changed, they should bring it
before a board member for discussion at project meetings and/or voting
as appropriate. Such a discussion would include the ethical issues
around including these texts, rules around wording descriptions if
they are included, and the category for inclusion. Bear in mind that
religious texts are important cultural documents so don't assume they
are only used for the purpose of proselytizing. Indeed, such tools may
be useful for anti-theists participating in debates on biblical
history, as well as for historical and cultural exploration.

What is NOT appropriate is the personal attack - direct or implicit -
in the language used in this discussion. I have strong personal views
on this matter but when discussing it on an openSUSE list I hope I'd
be able to put these views aside and exercise both logic and
compassion. These verbal barbs were also used recently in discussion
regarding categorization of Astrological software. Shall we also enter
into debates on the ethics of medical software that facilitates the
pushing of psychotropic drugs by Big Pharma, scientific software that
records cruel experimentation on animals, or a GIS system for forestry
'management'? At what point do we position ourselves as arbiters of
ethical choice?

Snide comments in regard to behavior of some religious groups,
history, the intellectual capacity of believers, and so on do not
reflect well on individuals nor on the distribution as a whole. We
have seen how the media misrepresent the views of a vocal few as being
the voice of the many.

We are intelligent people and I'm sure we are capable of discussing
this issue without resorting to such weak emotive argument.


Helen South.

IRC: helen_au

Some examples of content which are not permissible:

Religious texts

looks perfectly clear to closed.
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