They say you should never discuss politics, religion or sports with strangers...or friends...or apparently at all! And in yesterday's blog, true to form, I broke two of the three rules - so just for the hat trick - Go Pens! Go Braves! Go Yankees! Go Tigers! (No, not Missouri! ;) )
Seriously though, I got lots of support and lots of venom. I spoke my piece and I respect what others had to say as well. First off, I think some people missed the point. I didn't say only men were at fault(women are making these choices too) or Christians were at fault(I don't think that). I also stood up for many groups in the post - including both of those mentioned groups. But obviously I hit a nerve. Which in the sheerest form of irony is exactly what every writer tries to do.
But it's hard. Especially when those comments come from people you know and love. But that's the beauty of it, and the exact point of yesterday's rant. Freedom. I can say what I want and so can you. Freedom of choice. And is a beautiful thing.
Some of you attacked me for my religious choices. I'm a Christian, if you know me at all, you know this. I know lots of Christians who are the most amazing people. I know Jewish people, atheists, Mormons, I even know a Buddhist! No judgement! Just because I want to stand up for freedom of choice in certain matters doesn't mean I agree with everything I mentioned. Freedom is the basis of what I want for everyone. And it wasn't a religious blog, it was political and the backlash showed exactly why it is so hard to divide church and state. It's personal and people feel strongly and have convictions. But that's not what this blog is about...
The most brutal feedback came to me via my inbox, but trust me when I say, I was not attacking anyone personally. If you took it personally, perhaps that's something to think on. All I'm saying is to each his own and it's not my place, your place, nor the governments to tell me or you otherwise. We have laws so we aren't a society of poo flinging monkeys but too much control and we lose our rights and our choices and in the end our freedom.
I knew when I posted yesterday it would be a house divided on the results. But I stand by what I said. The people I was talking about in my blog were politicians who are supposed to represent the people but are really lining their pockets. They aren't solving things. Now, before you get all wound up - am I saying my views are what the majority want? Absolutely not! But what I am saying is the power needs to belong to the people, not a handful of old men and women who aren't really in touch with their voters views. I have trouble with overly Left views as well as too far Right. Democracy happens in the middle.
I'm thankful for the support and the other because at least people will get up and fight for what they want. I don't mind being a lightening rod for progress. And again, to you, who called me everything except a Godless heathen, I promise you - my faith is strong. My views are my own and I know what I'm fighting for. I'm fighting for you. So that you have the ability to belittle me and humiliate me instead of having a normal debate about our differences. You didn't even stop to ask me what I thought about certain things before assuming what I am and calling me all sorts of lovely jargon I won't repeat here. And I do thank you for using my inbox.
So here is my point. As a dancer, you create something and some people like it and some people don't, but it's art and subjective and not everyone knows about dance so even though you take every critique personally, it helps you grow. You put a piece of you out there and let people see it. You gauge their reactions and know that it's not you, even though it kind of is.
But in this journey becoming a writer, every word on the page is me. Whether I'm writing my views or creating my own characters and what they would say. People are judging you every single second their eyes are on that page. When you write something good, most people smile and nod. When you write something bad, you become fuel for jokes and fodder that spread across the world wide web like wild fire. But when something you write hits home, emotions get involved. People get attached to characters. People might even cry when their stories end. People tell you how they would write the story and when you write something like yesterday, people lash without thinking of the person sitting on the other side of the keyboard. While every writer wants this, it's still pretty damn hard to sit back and take it.
Hey, I get it! It's part of the gig. And I have been guilty of it myself. Lashing out at faceless posts that are just black and white letters on a screen. But really, it's a little piece of someone's soul. Everytime you put something out there you have to be a little braver, a little stronger, and unfortunately, a little harder. By the time I get published, I might be made of marble.
What keeps you from becoming a stone? The support. And the venom. But mostly the fact that maybe, just maybe, you're making a difference. That's what I hope to do.
So if you liked yesterday's business, thanks! And if you hated it, I thank you too for taking the time! No one can grow if you're always floating downstream...just next time...easy on the name calling - believe it or not, I have feelings too! ;)