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Your definition of thuggish seems a bit off. Thug = a common criminal, who treats others violently and roughly.

It's akin to calling someone 'white trash'.

Is the point I'm making unclear? Would you like me to reword it? Is there a word you'd prefer I had used in that place instead?

Your point is clear: you're dealing with people who are being willfully moronic. In general, it's advisable to attribute stupidity and not malice -- in this case we are being inflicted with malicious stupidity.

I do believe these arguments being forwarded are deliberately obtuse: whenever an argument is proposed without anticipating and responding to the most obvious challenges, and the person appears to be otherwise possessed of significant intellect, I conclude that the banality is intentional.

There's nothing about the phrase 'white trash' which implies someone is a criminal, though.

It's more akin to calling someone a skinhead.

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