I added an answer to the discussion of Lou Reed's lyrics and I realized later that it should have been a question in its own right. I’m reluctant to delete that answer because of the comments and votes on it, but I will if it’s confusing the issue. I’m asking whether the EL&U community feels that citations of potentially offensive or unwelcoming content should be treated differently and not whether a particular instance is offensive. I realize some folks are tired of talking about the discussion I referenced here, but this isn’t a duplicate.
I think it would be worth getting community feedback on the idea in this comment:
"offensive or unwelcoming", that's POB. Does it violate the be nice policy? Can anything "quoted" ever violate it? If an answer doesn't align with your views, it is at your discretion to DV it. But if at anytime I'm disallowed to cite what someone else once said, that's censorship. – Mazura
Should citing what someone else has said be held to a different standard than original text from the author of a post when it comes to violating the Code of Conduct?
Let’s assume the citation is relevant to the answer and the author feels that particular citation is critical to their answer but a significant number of people find it unwelcoming.
Are there any mitigating qualities, like the length of the citation, historical significance, etc. that would cause us to keep a citation that we would normally remove if it had been original text? What factors would cause us to keep a question about source material that is deeply offensive to some portion of the community?
Also consider from one of the comments on the answer:
Just some more food for thought. What if you quote something that is acceptable now, but not in 10 years time? Or for that matter, something that was acceptable a few years back but no longer now? Especially when talking about etymology it may well be that (almost) everything on a subject is no longer acceptable, but that shouldn't mean it's automatically out of scope. That's like not teach history because it may be construed as offensive. – JJJ
I would like to separate (if we can) the actual incident here with a more general discussion of what kinds of factors should be taken into account when citing potentially offensive material, keeping in mind that the goal is to make EL&U as welcoming and inclusive as possible without undermining its primary purpose as a knowledge sharing site.