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There was a little spat here, and I'm starting this thread on meta in case it needs to continue.
I would say no, calling someone out on downvoting without commenting is not equally acceptable as downvoting: Downvoting a question or answer you don't like, disagree with, or think is wrong is an integral part of how mathoverflow works, but picking fights about it is a distraction from what we're trying to do.
Furthermore, I think the real issue here is that saying "have some courage" could easily be interpreted (remember, this is the internet) as incivil, or at least near the lower bound of civility on MO. In fact, this comment was flagged as potentially offensive, which is what brought this thread to my attention. Let's set aside this issue as a example of a being misunderstood on the internet, and just thrash out the "downvoting without commenting issue", if it needs that.
I don't know what kinds of Social-Technical nudges or kludges might work best here, but a similar situation developed at PlanetMath, where it became clear that some people and topics had become targets for anonymous masses of knee-jerk negative ratings based on some kind of personal animus or subdisciplinary rivalry. They eventually had to change the rating questionnaire at the bottom of every entry so that raters had to give reasons for their votes, positive or negative.
It might be necessary to examine whether rank opinion polling really makes such a good fit with mathematical reasoning.
Fine, I've removed the comments, but it seems like downvoting an answer without also leaving a comment is improper etiquette and passive-aggressive nonsense.
You seem to have a very different perspective on downvoting than myself, and I would guess most of the site users. Downvoting is not primarily a message to the writer of the post, it's a message to the rest of the site that says "I don't think this post is worth reading." It seems pretty strange to characterize that as passive-aggressive. It might be if it were all about a communication between the downvoter and the writer of the post, but it's not.
Okay, I think djordan's point 3) above covers the "peer pressure" comment. Stuff on the internet gets misread, and I had no idea you were talking about a badge, and as such I thought it wasn't the most appropriate comment either.