I’ve always told people that writing for public consumption can be a fabulous fun thing to do. It can be a life-affirming hoot; or it can sometimes be a real gut-kick to the old ego if you don’t have the stomach for criticism.
So, if you’re highly emotional, touchy-feel, and supersensitive with an easily bruised ego, it’s probably best that you NOT publish your thoughts.
I’m a “bring-it-on type” regarding criticism of my opinions and the way in which I express them. Like me or hate me as you will, but my goal has always been publishing what I found as opposed to what I was looking for.
To this point in my life (mid-70s), I’ve been praised, criticized, harassed, and actually threatened with various forms of bodily harm, not to mention a couple of threats against my life several years ago.
I remember one incident wherein I received a combination of ten anonymous handwritten notes in a single two week period (no Internet back then); all of which described the tenuous nature of my living past the end of the month.
Absolutely nothing has changed. Controversy still attracts me the way that fecal matter attracts flies. And I love it, the controversy not the fecal matter; although I don’t mind stirring it a bit, the fecal matter not the controversy.
Take, for example, Wawa, a convenience store chain that sells many grocery store products, along with gasoline, and take-out food items such as hoagies, side dishes, soups, etc.
Now, for the record, Wawa is a fine, customer-oriented chain that treats its customers well. I frequent the place at least once a day.
But a few years back, they advertised a coffee cup sweepstakes. They named it, You Could Win Millions. I tore it apart in one of my weekly postings, and a local store manager took me to task over it, but I refused to back off.
First, understand that Wawa individual stores sell tens of thousands of cups of coffee weekly. Multiply this number by the number of stores conducting the sweepstakes, and you end up with one humongous base of potential “winners.”
However, there was to be only ONE finalist. In other words, out of hundreds of thousands of participants, only one of them would get the chance to draw the ONE-winning envelope out of 100 envelopes.
The arithmetic was simple; the astronomical odds against one being the finalist aside, Wawa’s chances of actually having to pay out a million dollars were ONE out of ONE HUNDRED. To me, it was a bogus deal.
And on the subject of hate-mail, I am still receiving it in droves from the fanatical God people regarding my views on science, human sexuality, and religion.
Most recently, according to Bart, from Alabama, I am “a sinful blue-state, left-wing commie, fag-loving Godless twofu-eater (his spelling), who perverts our nation’s kids.”
Bart was upset with my views on homosexually and because I don’t think creationism has any legitimate scientific validity at all, let alone that we shouldn’t be teaching it as a scientific alternative to Evolution.
Granted, hard evidence has always shown some of our past science to be in error. Nor is there any reason to assume that it won’t happen again. This is the essence of the scientific method.
But it still holds that ANY tenet that relies ENTIRELY on faith for its validity resides light-years from anything near legitimate science, and this most certainly includes the BIBLE.
As well, Bart, I categorically deny that I eat tofu. However, I’m proud of the fact that I’ve never considered ignorance to be a point of view.
I certainly would not accuse Bart of being a knuckle dragging, gun-toting, cousin-marrying, redneck religious zealot simply because he disagrees with me.
But I’m also stopping way short of proclaiming that cousin-marrying and Alabama are mutually exclusive, either.
Tradition, while we may want to grant it a vote, should never have veto power. Nor does old necessarily translate to being good any more than new necessarily translates to being better. And the sooner we embrace these notions, the better off we’re all going to be.
And speaking of politics, there isn’t enough space to list all of the political nonsense people send me on a daily basis.
We’re subjected to some mighty dumb politicians on both sides of the aisle. Think Louie Gohmert! The man is but a mere spark among a hundred sparklers of DUMB.
But most politicians are not as dumb as some members of the nation’s press have become. The politicians have mastered the art of conning the press into asking the wrong questions, the answers to which are meaningless.
The electorate is turning off in droves, and the politicians know that the most effective and efficient way to sell statistical bullsh*t to voters who simply don’t care is to just make the stuff up.