My brother married in 1988--five years before me. I was an usher, along with one of his co-workers and a college friend of his, and it's something that college friend said that resonates even more strongly today. We had been at the wedding rehearsal earlier that evening, and the Episcopal priest had been unflinching in his demand to do things a certain way, in spite of my soon-to-be sister-in-law's protests. It had to do with the recessional, some picayune point, and the answer he gave smacked of "because I said so", as though we were children.
Later, while we were having a beer at a local watering hole, Tom held forth on what he thought of clergy, saying something to the effect of "people who don't get what they want in life become clergy so that people HAVE to listen to them", no matter how petty or fatuous their demands, no matter how self-serving their prayers and sermons. I have to confess that he made a lot of sense, and it applies to using social media responsibly.
I've seen people spout forth on topics across the spectrum--people who should know better--and exposing their intolerance of opinions veering more than a degree or two from theirs. I think I find that more aggravating than any puerile, ignorant rantings they might be spewing at a given point in time.
1) I try not to say anything here I wouldn't say in person.
2) I try not to bash on individuals or groups without cause.
3) I generally don't name names, unless they're a public figure.
4) I don't get dramatic unless it's called for. I'm not a fan of purple prose, but I AM a fan of Norman Maclean ("shorter by half").
5) People have the right to strenuously disagree with me.
6) I have the right to disagree in return.
7) Disagreement doesn't make the other party evil (I don't use the term "hater")--just different (with certain exceptions).
8) By nature I am not a sound bite kind of person. Weblogs are perfect for working out issues.
9) I do wish more people would respond to my posts, and I think I've done my best to get the message out there, but I don't obsess over it. It makes new responses all the more special.
10) As long as there are unbending old farts (or young ones) who give me a hard time in customer service, unjust situations in the world, or kids on my lawn, there will be fodder for this blog. Heh, heh...
51 days till graduation. Onward.
*--Cedric Dent and Mervyn Warren for Take 6, So Much to Say, 1990