When I feel that one of my answers is unfairly down voted (which actually happened to me once. I know you are shocked to hear that!) well, I'm used to that.

But when it is by a moderator (Caleb) on a patently false "charge" it strikes me as tyranny, not democracy. So I feel compelled to challenge this, particularly since I have a long history of dealing with this individual for his unfair treatment of my posts. As recently as last night this same vote was deleted as a duplicate when in fact it was not. He clearly doesn't like this post but in my ever extremely humble view he's got a bug in his eye.

So the down vote was because "This only obliquely addresses the issue that is raised by the question. – Caleb". Can a moderator OTHER THAN CALEB please review the answer to determine if this is indeed some perversion in my answer or in the moderator's judgment or motives?

I want to know how the question could be answered less "obliquely" to the point that I don't have moderators trying to undermine my posts. That is how I understand the situation.


  • 1
    When using capitals, saying someone has "a bug in his eye", and slapping somebody with biblical references, you are not "ever extremely humble".
    – user2672
    Jan 17, 2019 at 14:37
  • And you sir do not understand irony! (But then, who does?) Irony would be if you found yourself at the butt of a moderator's personal issues.
    – Ruminator
    Jan 17, 2019 at 14:39
  • 1
    votes are private, how do you know who down-voted you? Jan 17, 2019 at 15:51
  • @JackDouglas That is a sensible thing to ask. It is because he had deleted my answer (under false pretences) so it was locked. Then it was unlocked, down voted and I received the hypercritical comment, all at about 4am EST this morning. If I am incorrect, he is welcome to deny it. I am a bit zealous about my posts being undermined, especially by a moderator.
    – Ruminator
    Jan 17, 2019 at 15:57
  • 4
    I don't think anyone should deny downvoting when they are accused of doing it — that also undermines the principle of votes being private. If you are happy with your posts, I don't think you should worry about downvotes. Jan 17, 2019 at 20:51
  • I can't relate. I care very deeply about my posts.
    – Ruminator
    Jan 17, 2019 at 22:31
  • 3
    Most people who take the time and effort to post care about what they are posting — and we all get downvotes. Who knows why in many cases? It doesn't matter. The system works overall because there is a tendency for better posts to be higher voted, so good answers usually float to the top. Caring deeply about your posts can't extend to wasting effort trying to track down and debate every person on the internet who disagrees with you, surely? Jan 17, 2019 at 23:54
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    Do what you want with your own posts, of course. Obviously I don't consider seeking to end a pattern of undermining my posts with hypercritical moderator posts a waste of effort. What is a waste of effort is putting great care into my post and having someone undermine them for fake reasons. That I care about.
    – Ruminator
    Jan 18, 2019 at 0:06

1 Answer 1


The first and most important requirement for an answer is that it answers the question. An oblique answer is one that doesn't directly answer the question, but instead talks about other (possibly) related topics.

You say "I want to know how the question could be answered less 'obliquely'", so here's my suggestion:

The question is an either-or question: "Does Revelation 3:20 refer to individuals or a whole church (Laodicea)?". It seems to me that there are only five categories an answer can fall into, and furthermore it must fall in to only one of these five:

  1. Individuals only
  2. The whole church (local, regional, or global)
  3. Both individuals and the whole church
  4. Neither individuals nor the whole church
  5. The question itself is invalid

A good answer for this question (but not necessarily a 'right' answer) would:

  • Clearly state which of the five categories the answerer believes
  • Give reasonable evidence for why they believe it
  • Give evidence for why the other answers are less preferred.

Applying these criteria to your answer shows that your answer is poor because your answer doesn't do the main thing required of an answer: It doesn't actually answer the question

The downvote is not unreasonable. And Caleb's (pretty mild) comment is not unreasonable.

May I suggest that you use it as an opportunity to improve your answer, and your answering skills.

  • 1
    From sentence one of my post as it appeared when Caleb made the comment, you made your comment and is it is now: "The "doorkeeper" is an individual:" I cite Rev 3:20 and highlight the singulars in the text and continue: "However, the individual would likely have a family." May I recommend that the moderators and you have a glaucoma test?
    – Ruminator
    Jan 19, 2019 at 0:48
  • The question (as I read it) is referring to the hearers, not the knocker.
    – cdjc
    Jan 19, 2019 at 0:51
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    merriam-webster.com/dictionary/doorkeeper But I've moved on. Leaders tend to blame the victims rather than side with "the other".
    – Ruminator
    Jan 19, 2019 at 0:55
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    Your answer still doesn't make sense to me. Repeating parts of it (here in the comments) is like expecting a non-english speaker to understand you by speaking slowly and loudly. It still doesn't make sense to me. I still can't for the life of me figure out how your answer actually answers the question. I still don't know how a doorkeeper relates to answering the question, and simply repeating it is not helping me.
    – cdjc
    Jan 19, 2019 at 1:19
  • 2
    Okay, you still want to dance. I was just actually harassed by @Keelan as well. Fine. You supplied as your first "possible answer" this: "Individuals only". Now, individuals is plural, so really your "possible answer" is not an answer. It would be an individual doorkeeper, not "individuals". My answer was "The doorkeeper is an individual... well, what's the point. The wolves have circled..
    – Ruminator
    Jan 19, 2019 at 1:23

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