“...speaking truth to power is never without risk."I often err in my writing in one way or another. I'm an emotional person and my writing reflects that...not always to my credit. Sometimes my emotions get the best of me. My most recent diary offended many, and while that was predictable and to some degree intended, I don't take pleasure in it. There were two parts that generated most of the offense, my title and my closing line. They were admittedly hyperbole, but as I have said many times before, hyperbole has its place. It sometimes gets the attention of those who might otherwise be apathetic...and there's just a boatload of that going around.
With respect to the charge that I went “all Godwin” with my last line, I don't think I did – though I suppose that is open to interpretation. I never invoked Hitler or Nazis, at least not directly. I simply made an oblique reference to something that happened in WWII, something important of which we are all aware – or should be. It was certainly not my intent to insult Jews. I acknowledge the insensitivity of the remark and I apologize for it. My failure was unintentional. I believed the reference to be fitting in that the people I was referring to are being led off to an end they cannot imagine. Some pointed out that the Jews in that situation were well aware of what was coming – and that may be where my reference falls apart. It was not my best line or finest moment, but the point being made was valid, in my opinion. I tried to make it in the strongest terms possible. Again, I am sorry for doing so in such an insensitive manner.
If I had it to do over again, I would choose a different title and last line. It was, as many said, too harsh, too over-the-top, even for a piece intended to be provocative. It detracted from my message, which was an important one. I will try to bear that in mind in the future. That said, it is also true that there is a time for civility, and a time for kicking people in the ass. It can sometimes be a fine line.
Others took offense for partisan reasons and insisted on making it all about Obama, who was never even mentioned in the diary. Not everything is about Obama. As I repeated several times in the thread:
I never meant to blame all this on Obama. It is the entire system that's rotten and it was rotten well before he ever got here.Others are more willing to lay this directly at the feet of the present administration, and I do find that understandable. It's not like they aren't in it up to their eyeballs.
I don't excuse the President for his role in all of this, but it's an error (IMHO) to think it was all his doing. But it's certainly fair to say that we could use some better leadership...just not gonna happen until we upend this system and implement a better one.
The Obama Surveillance Revelations Are Pushing Liberals Over the EdgeGentle persuasion is a fine approach, one I attempt to employ fairly frequently. But this is a crucial issue and this is a critical moment – and the masses slumber on, all the gentle persuasion in the world notwithstanding. Sometimes a wakeup call is in order.
Progressives are mad as hell at the administration when it comes to civil liberties, and they're not going to take it anymore.
So in sum, I am truly sorry if I offended any Jews – the many who are my cherished friends and all others as well. I am neither an anti-Semite nor a racist.
The diary in question got a lot of attention, and I found myself, after a point, wishing it would just go ahead and fall off the rec list. I was pretty sick of it myself by the time it finally did – and then it kept coming back to life. Even after it scrolled off the rec list time and again, people kept finding it and rec'ing it, pushing it back up. Maybe that's because of what it contained other than the insults. But it did hurt a lot of peoples feelings, much more so than I intended, and I am sorry for that. I didn't fully realize just how many people would take my rhetoric and hyperbole so very personally. It's not my mission in life to hurt peoples feelings, but it is my mission to wake people up to the neo-fascist nightmare unfolding in this country. I fully meant to stir the pot and rattle some cages, and from that perspective, mission accomplished.
If I offended those who support, rationalize, defend or are apathetic to the grave threat posed to our democracy by the National Security State, while I'm not glad your feelings were hurt, I can't help but think that they deserved to be. It is my sincere and earnest belief that you need to be awakened before it is too late. I have tried.
"He who dares not offend cannot be honest."