Get The Ink Out: Doggone it, now I'm really mad

Lately we've been having problems with the comments on

It seems some readers started leaving their manners at home when we went with the Wild West method of not screening comments.

That's OK. There's a new sheriff in town — Sheriff Rowe — and she's polishing up her twin Colt peacemakers, so you rascally vermin better be on the lookout.

(At this point, I suggest reading my column in a Wild West accent.)

While I may not have Kurt Russell's stellar mustache from "Tombstone," I do have Wyatt Earp's keen eyes. You can bet your last two bits that I find violators faster than a rattlesnake strikes.

I'm going to repost the rules I laid down in September for the elections ("Get The Ink Out: Keep online debates civil"). If it helps, you can imagine it written on paper curling in the hot desert sun.

No obscenities. If you wouldn't want your grandmother to hear it, I wouldn't write it.

No flaming one another. A debate is not made more enlightening by calling anyone an idiot. Pick on the issues, not the person. Also, try to avoid the mob mentality because his or her ideas are in the minority.

No wild accusations. If you can't back up your claim, don't make it.

No racism, sexism, homophobia or religious intolerance. Do I really need to explain this one to you?

Stay on topic. I'm a fan of tangents in conversation, but all too often in political debate, there is a loss of focus.

Be yourself. Please don't create multiple accounts to make the same point, or worse, to debate yourself. If I see this happen, all of your duplicate comments, or comments to yourself, will be deleted.

Lastly, I reserve the right to ban anyone from commenting. Mainly this is for anyone thinking about spamming our site (you hear that, you little bots?!), but if your comments consistently break the rules, you will be blocked.

Yep, those rules haven't changed, pardner. But maybe y'all need random examples I've made up based on real life.

Example: Clearly, you're off your meds and belong in a mental institution.

In the Wild West, them's fightin' words, and online, it's grounds for flaggin' and removal. Disagreeing with someone is no reason to attack on the personal level; furthermore, it doesn't add to the debate. Plus, you're making up a wild accusation. Unless Doc Holliday is flappin' his lips, chances are you don't know someone's mental state.

Example: He's got his head so far up his a**, he sees his tonsils.

I surely wouldn't say that to my granny. She'd tan my hide just as soon as I could blink. And heaven help me if I didn't use symbols. That's right, buckaroo, even if you use symbols to mask your filthy mouth, I'm gonna take that comment down like Rango took down that big ol' mean hawk.

So now that we've gone over the rules, let me explain some areas that have come up since the last time we spoke.

Avatars: We added these fun little profile pictures awhile ago. I have a shot of my friend's cat, Fluffernella. She's an ornery old lady, which is mighty fittin' for a sheriff. You're welcome to upload your own, but remember to keep it in good taste and don't steal someone else's images. I will revert you to the default silhouette if I find the image offensive or if it's someone else's work.

Names: Screen names are fun. Right now I'm Web Mistress, but sometimes I go by my real name, and maybe I'll add in Sheriff Rowe for fun. This is an opportunity to show off your wit, but please, keep your names appropriate, too.

Über zot: A couple of people lately have broken just about every rule I done set forth, so I not only banned their accounts, but I deleted every comment they had ever made. Think of this as the bad guy's body being buried out in the desert without a marker so that no one will ever remember his name.

This ol' sheriff likes the Wild West method for comments. We're seein' more people talk, toss around ideas and bring a lot to the online debate.

But this ain't one woman's job. It's also up to you gunslingers to make the online forums an inviting place to express ideas. So hitch that pony to the nearest post, pardner, and belly up to the Daily Pilot saloon where you can have a bit of sarsaparilla and a little civil discussion.

Iffin you be needin' me, I'll be out back practicin' with my peacemakers.

Web Editor JAMIE ROWE can be reached at (714) 966-4634 or

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