Thinking For Yourself



A video comes to light. In it you see me clocking (punching) a woman. What’s the immediate response? Of course it’s that I knocked out the woman for apparently no reason. Here comes the online mob, who will do everything they can to make me look like someone that should be in jail. But is what is seen the actual story or is the video heavily edited to ensure  I am the aggressor?

We’ve all seen videos as I’ve described and immediately come to a conclusion But is that conclusion the truth or have we been somehow grifted: made to believe that what we are viewing is a true representation? We were all witness to what occurred in Washington D.C. with some Catholic school kids from Kentucky. There was a rush to judgement over a tiny amount of video which actually showed nothing as how it was being described and even after the full video came to light, there were still those that could just not believe that these kids did nothing wrong.

For some reason, people have a need to believe the worst in others, because of their political ideology or their race, even religion. Other times, the reasons are unclear, but it doesn’t stop those looking for an excuse to place blame from doing just that. We often see just a single viewpoint, that which those with an agenda want us to know and of course, when the motive is questioned, when the person comes under attack to the point of being threatened, even though there’s evidence to support their story, isn’t believed.

Whenever I see something like this, I am of course, skeptical. It doesn’t mean that what I’ve read or viewed isn;t the truth, it just means that I think there’s more to the story than what I’m being told. I’m usually correct and if I take the time to delve a little deeper, I am able to discover what’s real and what is not. Some narratives are too good to believe, too perfect, or better, much less than perfect to take at face value.

The real question is why there are so many willing to terrorize someone based on so little evidence? What has happened to society to the point where we easily tear someone’s life apart rather than wait, just for a moment, to discover the truth? I think it’s because that online, we are anonymous and it’s easy to make threats  or otherwise attacks those we disagree with. That says a lot to me. Would those same people dare confront those they disagree with in person? Of course not. It’s the highest form of cowardice.

I’ve always said that there’s nothing I would say online that I wouldn’t say to the same person if I were in front of them. I stand by that statement. I don’t fear the human animal; They have nothing to say, or that they may do to intimidate me. Unfortunately, that doesn’t work for everyone.  Having to delete a social media account because you have received so much harassment that it becomes impossible to stay online is something that should never happen to anyone. Of course, those same bullies, that would never confront you in person, rapidly disappear. Ignoring the stupid has become a daily mantra for me. It should for everyone.

Before I go, recently a journalist was banned from Twitter for expressing an opinion and I’m paraphrasing here: Men cannot be Women, and Women cannot be men.  That was that person’s opinion and she was mobbed bedore Twitter banned her, for life. Whether anyone agrees with that statement or not, should she have been mobbed for an opinion? Should Twitter have banned her because she holds an opinion that they dislike?

We all hold opinions that may not be politically correct for a certain crowd. Should I be be afraid to express them based on the thought we may be mobbed? I say no to that. I say, don’t be afraid of the mob, because that’s exactly what they want. They want to silence those of us that have an opinion  that is contrary to what they think everyone should by into.

Going back to my hypothetical situation where I clocked the woman. Am I under arrest or did anyone wait for the full video? In my made up situation here’s what actually happened: A woman attacked me with a crowbar, She missed. I knocked her out. Am I the bad guy here protecting myself? There will always be those that say yes, no matter what I should not have hit my attacker. In reality, what would you do?

Is there a reason to believe what we are told or should  we take a few minutes to evaluate what we’ve been told, or what we have seen? I’d rather the later than the former. Too many times we are all subjected to those stories, created out of whole cloth, attempting to have us respond in a way we may later regret. I’d prefer that I not regret and wait to hear what has actually happened before I respond, I try to do this everyday. Do you?



2 thoughts on “Thinking For Yourself

  1. You should deck anybody that attacks you or yours and if you have a gun, you should use it.

    About social media and the instant jump to be judge, jury and executioner; that is our reality now. If the generations coming up don’t realize by now that what is recorded goes everywhere and for any agenda purpose, they are truly clueless.

    Maybe this is evolution at work. No, I would not say in public much that I say online, unless the need to do so was urgent and served some purpose other than my venting need. I value my live within my real community of diverse folk and their opinions, etc.

    This bears more thought, but my time is short right now.

    Thanks for continuing to bring up Sarah and those in similar situations.


  2. The “more thought” bit; when all of social media is scourged of “improper” thought and opinion, what then will be the words, person, idea to become outraged about?

    Will social media fall into different camps, whose walls are not to be broached? Will our nation begin to separate itself accordingly and like-minded folks migrate East or West, North or South to join those with whom they can live in peace or a variation thereof?

    How much pressure can any with opposing notions take before they give up? Will the battles be more carefully considered before we join in? You know; choose your battles carefully. I guess that is what I do.

    There are reasons to do battle and speak up in real life, but there is much I write about online that I would not risk saying in my community, which reveals too much of me and would impact too hard upon my husband and my family and me.

    And none of it has to do with my atheism. Most people I know monitor their speech in real life for just this reason. Now that reason is coming home to online speech.

    Is this a good or a bad thing? What has the freedom to say absolutely anything that pops into our brain gotten us? What has the freedom to behave in manners that we know would shame our mothers and grandmothers gotten us?

    When the tables turn, will conservatives censor and censure progressives? And, how far will the pendulum swing in the other direction?

    I know that your blog is “Thinking for yourself” but is “saying what you think” always the best choice?

    Have we lost the “manners” needed for civil discourse? If so, then how did we lose them?

    And, how do we get them back?


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