This popped up in my "On This Day" feed from May 11, 2016:
Have you ever felt intimidated about stating an opinion, question, observation, or passing idea? Have you ever calculated the fear of being judged, labeled, or categorized for having a divergent view on some subject or a doubt about some matter of ideological orthodoxy? We have all seen people pounced on and maligned.
I tend to identify with such people and feel really bad for them, even when I am not in agreement -- but I am sometimes too big of a coward to come to their defense.
I am getting a little weary of critics, mean-spirited commentators, and ungracious quip-jockeys who latch on to any and every bit of negative evidence to prove their point against someone or something - with or without verifying their information --- and without regard to context, real meaning, or relevance. A lot of this comes from my tribe, but it is not tribal. It is a not the product of any one ideology. All tribes have those who succumb to the temptation. All of us have done it. Our technology makes it easier to practice it and, often, at the same time, to be victims of it --- which makes us want to practice it more. We need to resist it and be as gracious, loving, reasonable, and balanced in the public arena as most of us are face to face with real people --- because we really ARE face to face with REAL PEOPLE.
And I said, "weary," not angry, but beat-up, demoralized, and tired of fighting ... today. Tomorrow brings a new burst of energy and enthusiasm to love and speak truth in love.
In the meantime, we probably ought to be able to address any issue from our perspective without fear of being labeled or thought of as an enemy -- or part of some sinister conspiracy to deprive our neighbors of their rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.
We might even be able to change each other's minds on a thing or two.
At least we can get all the points and counterpoints out there and help the opposition sharpen their arguments even as we sharpen our own ...
... and we might make a friend along the way.
In the meantime, I bracing myself for a season of nastiness.