I can't imagine why anyone would want to post negative comments in that other thread now, particularly given this tragic outcome. What would be the point?
Very little of what was posted in that lengthy thread was personally negative toward the driver involved, it was much more a discussion of the general topic, and the laws, than the particular person involved. Most of the people posting didn't know the man, or even the specifics of the accident or the legal case, so most of the discussion had nothing to do with him--his situation, rather than the man, was the subject of the thread.
I can see some value in leaving that thread open. People who did know him might want to comment or express their feelings. Even those who had simply been following the topic conversation, and had only known of him that way, might want to comment and express their feelings.
It did frequently bother me that the man mentioned in the thread was someone who was not a member of A2K, but who was known to some members here, and, for them, he wasn't just another name in a news story--he was a quite real person toward whom they had feelings one way or another. And that man, or others close to him, might even have been reading or following that thread. Some posters seemed to forget they were commenting about a very real person, that they knew next to nothing about, except for the very few dry details of an accident report in a newspaper, and I thought many of their comments, and conclusions, and outright fantasies, about both the driver and the victim in that accident, were ill-considered, and possibly needlessly hurtful to those more closely involved.
I think that other thread served a very useful educational function in discussing and exploring an important topic, which is drinking and driving, But it also included some posters unsubstantiated, and fanciful, and often thoughtless, speculations about the real people, the driver and the cyclist, involved in a tragic accident, and those comments could have had unforeseen real life repercussions, or caused unnecessary emotional distress to the friends of the driver in that accident, since several friends and acquaintances of the man are A2K members. Comments of that sort generally come too close to being unwarranted, and rather pointless, gossip and therefore serve a very questionable and dubious purpose in these forums. And I've also long felt that way about most of the other threads that name an A2K member as the topic of the thread--including the thread currently active about an A2K member who recently left this site. But, in the thread in question, my feelings were even stronger because such off-handed comments involved one man who was dead, and another who was going through a highly stressful legal ordeal--a very real life and death situation--and the posters making such off-handed gratuitous speculation about these two real men, were simply indulging their own fantasies at someone else's expense, and basically ignoring the impact of their remarks on those A2K members who knew, or were involved with, one of the two men, as well as ignoring the impact on those outside of A2K who were simply following the thread because of a personal interest.
I think that whole issue is worthy of further discussion--and I think it's directly related to your apprehension about what might be posted on that other thread if it is left open. When we're talking about, and speculating about, and even gossiping about, specific known people, people known to others at A2K, should some degree of discretion and self-monitoring be exercised by posters regarding their comments about the person? Are there, or should there be, any standards of decency and fairness for this sort of thing at A2K? Should some posters have given more consideration to the real life impact of their comments in that other thread?
I'd be interested in what those of you, who did know this man, think about that other thread, given that most of it did not focus on that individual in any personal way. For that reason, I'd also like to see the thread stay open so such comments could be posted there. But I certainly understand why you'd like to see the thread closed.
Although I did not know the man, as the result of my involvement in that other thread, he certainly did become very real to me, and I am deeply sorry that his life ended this way.