There's been a huge kerfuffle about "be nice" and a "Code of Conduct" and certain groups feeling "oppressed" or "insulted" or "marginalized" or whatever the offense has been over the last year or so. Why doesn't that apply to all groups and all posts?

This question was originally about changing a squawk code because the person didn't like the assigned squawk code because of religious reasons and it got jumped all over. The OP was insulted for his* religious beliefs and was belittled for his "superstitions". The post was heavily edited and every answer (at least the ones before the massive edits) included some sort of insult about the OP's beliefs.

If the OP had asked about what "she" could do because "her" co-pilot kept calling "her" "Bob" because that's what the paperwork said instead of the "Susan" "she" said "she" preferred and people's answers said "deal with it, you were hired as 'Bob', so 'Bob' it is", that answer would have been down voted into oblivion before being removed and the answerer would have gotten a severe slap on the wrist if not a ban of some duration. (And that's being "nice", the answerer would have most likely been given a lifetime ban with no opportunity for appeal or reprieve.)

Instead everyone belittled and insulted the poster for being "superstitious" and was, effectively, told that his beliefs were pointless and stupid because he had a religious reason for having those beliefs. I am ashamed to admit that my initial response was to agree with the edits, despite the fact that I agree with the OPs position and beliefs.

Sadly, I've realized that I agreed with the edits because I was being "nice" and trying to not make waves and trying to protect the OP from all the nasty backlash that he received. I want to publicly apologize to Tom for failing to back him and stand up for his rights to be heard and have his beliefs supported.

Unless someone from SE corporate speaks up about this post and the vile things that were said about Tom, the actions on this post make it clear that there is no true intent to "be nice" or to support a truly "inclusive culture". The SE corporate policy is clearly in place to support one particular position and to denigrate all who oppose it. Yes, I'm sure that I will now come under the scrutiny of the Politically Correct Police Enforcement Division of our StackExchange overlords because my opinion doesn't agree with theirs. It's amazing how they are all in support for "freedom" of expression and personal beliefs, except where someone disagrees with their position.

* Yes, I know, I'm taking a huge risk by assuming that a poster whose screen name is "Tom" is male and referring to him with a male pronoun could be considered offensive so some. However, based on the original text of the question, I doubt he will mind and if you do, I frankly don't care, I'm not talking about you.

  • 4
    $\begingroup$ Can you explain what answer you're looking of here except "Yes of course the be nice policy applies to everyone"? This just reads like a bit of a rant at "the establishment" and really adds nothing IMO to what has already been discussed about this question, both inline at the question itself and in this meta question. $\endgroup$
    – Jamiec Mod
    Commented Oct 10, 2020 at 14:13
  • $\begingroup$ In addition, I did try to remove the superflous detail from this question - Aviation.se is not here to discuss superstation/religion and the question was valid without those details. Some of it has since been added back in, which I left for now as it did no great harm to include some rationale for the question (not to mention most answers already referenced it). $\endgroup$
    – Jamiec Mod
    Commented Oct 10, 2020 at 14:14
  • $\begingroup$ The problem is that the "superstitious" belief is considered "superfluous" and that the person was absolutely vilified for expressing a belief that is different from the approved belief system. Why are none of the answerers who posted such rude and non-inclusive responses not being censured for not "being nice"? $\endgroup$
    – FreeMan
    Commented Oct 10, 2020 at 15:03
  • $\begingroup$ The other question, BTW, addressed removing the beliefs, not protecting them. $\endgroup$
    – FreeMan
    Commented Oct 10, 2020 at 15:04
  • $\begingroup$ Ok, if you believe this is a different question I'll reopen it - but I cant really see what sort of answer you expect here. $\endgroup$
    – Jamiec Mod
    Commented Oct 10, 2020 at 15:14
  • $\begingroup$ Frankly, I'd expect to see some sort of official corporate uproar about people not following the "be nice" rules of conduct. They should apply to every believe whether that belief aligns with your own personal beliefs or not. There should, at least be some sort of censure for those who weren't very "nice" in their responses to the OP by belittling his beliefs. If there isn't anything done officially, then it will confirm my suspicion that "be nice" only applies to the officially supported doctrine and doesn't apply in all cases. $\endgroup$
    – FreeMan
    Commented Oct 10, 2020 at 15:25
  • $\begingroup$ And if, as your first comments states, it does apply to everyone, why were the moderators not quick to jump on the very "not nice" comments being made in the comments and answers? $\endgroup$
    – FreeMan
    Commented Oct 10, 2020 at 15:26
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    $\begingroup$ I guess I'm not really looking for an "answer" but simply pointing out the hypocrisy in a position that seems to be more and more out for revenge and not equality. So, I guess you can feel free to close and delete this question, doing so will simply confirm my suspicion as noted in the final paragraph prior to the footnote. $\endgroup$
    – FreeMan
    Commented Oct 10, 2020 at 15:28
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    $\begingroup$ I don't speak for "SE Corporate" and aviation.se is not the place to discuss religion or superstition. As you said, this is a non-question. It's a pointless rant. If you see behaviour you believe is against the CoC flag it and it'll be dealt with! As I said at the Q/A linked above. $\endgroup$
    – Jamiec Mod
    Commented Oct 10, 2020 at 15:35
  • $\begingroup$ comments & answers flagged $\endgroup$
    – FreeMan
    Commented Oct 10, 2020 at 15:43

1 Answer 1


The be nice policy does apply to everyone.

I believe religion and superstition should be kept away from a factual site related to Aviation. It is orthogonal to our subject matter.

Please flag behaviour you believe is rude or in any way against out Code of Conduct.

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    $\begingroup$ When it actually is orthogonal, I'd agree that there's no point for it to be here. However, in the case of that particular question, it was actually relevant. I don't expect that to often be the case at Aviation, but in that particular case, it actually was. And, indeed, as most of the answers indicated, that particular reason was one of the most common reasons, if not the single most common, for pilots to request a new code. While I'd completely agree that religion (or political views, etc.) doesn't belong here on its own, actual aviation questions that may be related to it can be on-topic. $\endgroup$
    – reirab
    Commented Oct 23, 2020 at 7:05

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