I don't believe that we can live without a P&R forum, because if we did the P&R threads would just appear everywhere else.
I also don't believe that we can effectively moderate the P&R forum. We've all seen what kind of disasters that leads to -- aside from the incredible amount of wasted effort in trying to make people behave according to our own rules.
So what can we do?
I've made a few changes that may help reduce the importance of the P&R forum:
- Posts in the P&R forum do not count towards user post count totals.
- Posts in the P&R forum are not indexed in vBulletin's internal search engine.
- Posts from the P&R forum do not show up when you click the "New Posts" link on the navbar. (Hack description is here.)
I don't expect any of these to have a significant impact. In fact, I don't believe that anything we do will have a major impact. People have been killing people over politics and religion since before the beginning of recorded history. This is not a problem we're going to solve with a few vBulletin settings and some forum rules.
So relax, sit back, and just be glad that the people you're arguing with are half a world away.