I’ve been consuming an extraordinary amount of blogging material in the last couple of months and I am starting to tire of some of the lilly-livered, sissified, crying like a bunch of babies women bloggers I have encountered lately. Sorry, I think I just channeled my hill-billy inner child self or something. I’ve got my panties in a bunch over controversial topics in the blogosphere. I want to start screaming, “Stop writing about controversial topics if you don’t want people to leave comments that disagree with you!” If you’re going to write about politics, racism, lesbianism, sexism, and probably the worst one of all…gardening there are going to be a few folks out there who disagree with you and feel compelled to leave you a comment. They should be able to. I’m not talking about the kind with nasty swear words and name calling, but well thought out, polite arguments (that may or may not agree with you) should be tolerated and even embraced. I mean why write about a controversial topic if you aren’t looking for a little discussion and commentary in the comments section? Heads up ladies, if you write about something that sets people’s souls on fire you are probably going to get a little attention. If you don’t want the attention than don’t write about the topic…it’s as easy as pie.
Just to be absolutely clear, I am not condoning personal attacks on other bloggers. I am merely suggesting we strive for a community where people can have differences of opinions and still be friends. A place where people may exchange ideas and opinions without fear of retribution. That would be an ideal and very enjoyable situation for all of us to partake in. Kind of like real life should be. My family members and friends don’t share all of my views on motherhood, politics, or global warming, but they still love me and we’re still friends. We respect each others ideas, values, and perspectives. It doesn’t mean we have to agree with each other 100% of the time. The disagreement and challenges to our own belief systems keep life interesting in a good way. It’s far better and more interesting to have a discussion on a topic relevant to our lifetime than to surround ourselves with the drama that comes from gossip and back-stabbing.
I am writing about this today, because this morning I was reading all of the blogs I have missed since last Friday. I was scrolling like mad trying to catch up on all that is new and exciting in the world of writing. I came upon a post on a very controversial topic that is running rampant through the media right now and putting people on both sides of the issue into a frenzy. The post was VERY long, but I read every single word. At the end I was looking forward to reading the comment section figuring there would be a LOT of comments. Surprisingly there were only three. I thought there must have been a big mistake made because this was a hot button issue and the post almost seemed designed to provoke people to come out of hiding wielding pitch forks and flaming torches. Also, the post had been published 15 hours ago. Something didn’t make sense. I clicked on the comments. One comment had been removed by the author, one comment said something like, “I totally agree with every word you said” and the third was just a thank you for commenting from the author. Weird. So, I decided to comment. I said I agreed with some of the post, but respectfully disagreed with the fundamental point the author was making. Then I listed the reasons why and posted links to information backing up my points and then challenged her to check them out. No big deal, right? A few hours later I went back to see if any new comments had been made and my comment had been removed (there weren’t any other new comments either). No explanation why, no debate on the subject, no nothing. It was just gone. Now I feel like I wasted my time reading the blog, thinking about the blog, and commenting on the blog. That is not a good feeling. It’s like going to a really bad movie and all you want is to do is get back those two hours of your life you just wasted. My time is scarce and valuable and to feel as though I wasted it is very uncomfortable and makes me a little angry. It would have been better if she had just called me an idiot for having my point of view. I would have felt better if she just laughed at me or just left my comment there hanging in the breeze. To be silenced as if I don’t even exist is much, much worse.
This got me thinking about the people reading my blog. I may or may not be controversial at times depending on your perspective. I am positive, however, that someday someone will disagree with me and leave a comment that states the opposite of what I believe. I want to make a promise to my readers right here and right now that I won’t censure you if you leave a well thought out and polite argument on my blog. I won’t silence my critics and I won’t go crying to other bloggers about people being mean. Every women should have a voice and be free to use it. I am open to new ideas, criticism, and heartfelt persuasions. I promise I won’t ever make you feel like you wasted your precious time commenting on my blog. Speak your mind, Ladies! SPEAK YOUR MIND! Oh, and Gentlemen too.