I see that Politics.SE has this policy -- to "protect the site from propaganda posts":

What measures are taken to protect the site from propaganda posts during the ongoing war between Russia and Ukraine?

And that that one of their reasons for closing a question is,

Questions which invite speculation or soapboxing, or contain soapboxing themselves, will get closed as "Promotes or discredits a political cause", "Speculative" or "Opinion-Based". As regular users of this site will be aware, this is not a new policy. Posts like that were never welcome on this website.

Now given that:

  • Buddhism.SE isn't meant to be about "politics"
  • We have no guidelines to assess political content
  • We have policies like this one to prevent "soapboxing"

I suggest that as policy, if the question isn't asking about modern politics, then don't add political commentary to your answer -- for example:

  • Buddhist views of marriage, or of gender roles in society, might be on-topic -- but not commentary on the laws and customs of specific countries
  • The Buddhist views on war (in general) is on-topic -- but specific wars are not

Similarly, questions should be general:

  • "Is fighting a war of self-defence OK?"
  • Perhaps even, "Kingship or democracy?"
  • But not, "What do you think of the war in Ukraine?"

When I see political opinion shoehorned into an answer, I'm inclined to delete it as "spam" -- i.e. unasked-for, unsolicited.

Also as a moderator I'm inclined to delete it:

  • Because if commentary about Israel for example gets flagged as "anti-semitism", I don't want to have to judge whether it is or isn't
  • In the past we've had a few comments that could be considered anti-Chinese, anti-Tibetan, anti-American -- which I don't think is necessary for answering questions on this site, nor welcoming etc.

Please say if you agree -- or whether you see any important exceptions, when it might be good to add political opinion or commentary? Or links to news articles which illustrate what you're saying?


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