This is not a rant. You won’t see So-and-So called a dumb bastard, or even see a mention of the perennial favorite: “fuckwit.” I throw down no gauntlets here. All I do is voice an objection to what seems like an unfair standard to which I am subject, and for that reason, seems to belong in the Pit. (If I am mistaken, my apologies to the Mods.)
In reference to this thread.
Honest to God, I do not understand. I’ve really tried to be as polite as I can through all of this, but I’ll be honest-- all of you who are gleefully kicking me around are hurting me. Maybe that amuses some of you or is considered some kind of victory, I don’t know.
All I can do is throw up my hands because it makes no sense. I did a search of my last 200 posts. Besides this thread, prisons and the CJS system came up once. I was roundly attacked for appearing there, too. Two threads. (Maybe I missed one, so I’ll call it three to be on the safe side.) To hear some of the complaints about me, you would think that I pop into a thread about icecream and start talking about my husband working in a prison.
I’ve got a nickname for it now: The FedEx Phenomenon. A few years back, someone posted a thread about the arrow in the FedEx Logo: they’d never noticed it until another Doper mentioned it and now that’s the *only *thing they noticed when they looked at it.
My “FedEx Moment” happed with that “A Word if I May” thread. After that, every time I post in a thread which mentions prisons, I find myself at the bottom of a pile of people eager to slam me for it, even though in reality, prison-related topics make up a very small percentage of my posts.
The “A Word If I May” thread addressed my habits of using my husband’s experience as my cite-- specifically, my wording of it. I was a bit flattered at the time, because it never occured to me that people remembered what I said or me as a poster. So, I made efforts to change my style because I didn’t want to annoy anyone, and started using internet cites (where they exist.) I even started avoiding mentioning him in other threads, just to avoid the accusations of never shutting up about him. (Had to mention him in the Valentine’s Day thread, though. It would have looked funny if I didn’t.)
I had even made a vow after the last debacle that I wasn’t going to post in prison threads any more because I was tired of being jumped on personally rather than being able to discuss the issues at hand. But the other side of me asked if I should be subject to special restrictions other Dopers were not.
So, when it was mentioned a pace downward in this thread that one of our Dopers thought that the child molester of the OP was probably aware now how it felt to be raped, I did the Doper thing.
You can see it in any thread. Somebody says that they saw ponies and wonders how long it will take them to turn into horses and Smart-Alec-Doper pops in to say that ponies don’t turn into horses and explains why. (Lame example, I know, but I’m upset right now.) I pointed out that this was mostly a myth.
Admittedly, I screwed up. I completely lost track of the fact that the crime in question took place in the UK. I was asked how I knew that. Paranoid-at-Being-Attacked Lissa thought, “Aha! A shallowly disguised attempt to get me to mention the Forbidden Name.” (Apologies to the poster in question if that was not their intent.) I responded with cites about flat sentencing, parole boards, prison rape, yadda yadda yadda. My first cite was even relevant to the difference between US and UK prisons in sexual assaults.
But from the above quote, it’s apparently completely irrelevant if what I have to share is correct. I have broached the Forbidden Topic. But, as I pointed out, alice was wrong. I hadn’t cited my husband.
So, no matter what I do, if I mention this Forbidden Topic, I’m in the dog house. The wounded side of me says, fine, let it go. Don’t bother any more. But I want to be able to participate just like anyone else. Christ almighty, I actually considered e-mailing a mod tonight to get my name changed so I could go back to doing what I was doing in quiet obscurity.
Yes, it upsets me. I’m not ashamed to admit that. I try to treat each and every one of you with respect and refrain from getting personal, even when the issue is something about which I hold strong opinions. I’ve failed at times. I try to apologize to those at whom I lash out, and if any of you has ever been someone I’ve treated badly and failed to apologize, please know that I do regret it. It’s hard to keep my temper in check sometimes.
I love this place. I’ve been here since '99 and I can see myself continuing with it indefinitley. I love debate, and I never take it personally when someone attacks my ideas. I am, however, easily wounded by personal insults and venoumous remarks, especially since I don’t feel the’re merited.
In the last thread, there was a nice person who phrased his opinion politely: that I should stop talking about my husband constantly. I didn’t do an exact count, but from my brief review of my last 750 posts, it appears that I talk about my dogs more than I talk about my husband. (They’ve certainly been the primary topics of threads I’ve started.) Am I to be held to a standard that no other Doper is: that there is one Forbidden Topic and one Forbidden Name?
Yeah, some were nice, but others were cruel, and I guess I just don’t understand that. Yeah, it’s the Pit, and such things are allowed but as my mother used to say, just because something’s legal doesn’t make it ethical. Why such seething anger and venom towards another poster when you could just simply skim by their posts if you prefer not to read their input on a subject? I could understand the nastiness if I were making racist remarks or insulting people, but all I’m trying to do is debate a topic which interests me. Why be so goddam* mean*?
I won’t be returning to that thread any more because, like the last few I’ve participated in, it’s become more focused on me than the topic at hand and that never was my intention.
I’m not asking for special favors. I’m asking to be treated like any other Doper, free to post ideas and opinions and have *those *rigorously attacked, not me personally.