Thursday, October 9, 2008

It's My Blog, I'll rant if I want to!

There have been a few times in my adult life when, in frustration, I have just wanted to throw the computer out the window. But then my thrifty genes take over quickly and I realize that is just senseless (expensive) destruction. I am referring to the many times that I have read something on the internet and wanted to add my own opinion to the comments at the end (along with many others, who enjoy freedom of speech and the anonymity that the internet provides). Usually, my opinion opposes the majority of the comments and when I see that, it HUGELY increases my desire to post my own two-cents worth. God made me an opinionated woman, and after 37 years, it has only gotten worse.
One frustrating time was when JK Rowling "outed" Dumbledore. I had the habit of visiting a certain website (I will never advertise for them), mainly right before book 7 was released, because it was fun to read the predictions. After the "outing", I went there to see what the reaction was - ohh, it was just peachy. Every one of the commentors thought it was just wonderful! I thought, "No Way! I know there are people out there like me who are disturbed that Rowling did this." But not one negative comment did I see. I tried multiple times to post, and my comments were deleted as fast as I could type them. It literally seemed like a race! Pretty soon, the staffer who ran the website posted, saying that "due to an unbelievable amount of bigoted and racist comments being posted against Rowling and Dumbledore, they were closing the comments section." My comments were not angry in tone or content. Nor were they "bigoted and racist". I am an adult with some sense of propriety, plus, those really contentious posts don't read well anyway. So, after a bit of research (reading profiles of the staffers on that website), I realized that most of them were gay/lesbian. That explained that. But still VERY frustrating, thinking that there is a whole section of society out there, many of them kids, who read that whole thread and got an entirely different impression than what is reality.

Last Friday, I visited the LA Times website to read a great article about Prop. 8. The poor guy who wrote it took a lambasting in the comment section, and it just annoyed me. I tried, yet again, to post comments, time and time again, and not a single one showed up on the thread. It felt like Dumbledore all over again. It feels alot like censorship. And funny how that is such a terrible thing to liberals, yet they seem to practice it all the time. It is one thing, to get that on a website that is personally owned by a group of book fans. But on a widely read newspaper's website, I expected a higher standard. At least the appearance of being unbiased.

I wrote the following letter to the LA Times:
I am concerned with a glaring problem on your website. After reading a particular editorial (the one about Prop. 8), I saw that all the comments were extremely negative. I tried repeatedly to post a comment in response to the editorial and also in response to the amazingly one-sided and insulting comments. Unfortunately, none of my comments were posted. I am wondering why your webmaster seems to have it out for supporters of Prop. 8. This is unfair and in my opinion, a pathetic miscarriage of free speech, to twist the public opinion and make it seem that there are no supporters of Prop. 8 out in the LA area. I cancelled my subscription to the LA Times because of a decidedly leftist slant. My decision was reinforced today. Rest assured that there are many like me out here, I live and work with them every day. Sad that your newspaper cannot appeal to a broad base of people. Sad for you, that is.
Laura Wright,

No response yet.

What they don't realize is that all they did was make me more determined to be heard.

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