People love me… until they don’t. My non-fiction posts are often inflammatory as I tend to discuss controversial topics (and I do so with no small amount of sarcasm). If you share my point of view, you may find yourself cheering me on. It’s always fun to have someone champion your ideals or causes, especially if it’s someone who isn’t afraid to really lay it all out there in a brutally honest way. As I’m busy hacking and slicing away at my intellectual opponents, my supporters laugh and high-five each other and point out that all the “haters” need to develop a sense of humor or better still, wise up to the “truth”. (Whatever that may be).
It isn’t until they find themselves staring down my verbal buzz saw that I cease being their hero and instead become the asshole that needs to keep his mouth shut. I think of South Park creators Matt Stone and Trey Parker. They lambasted religions of all sorts and Isaac Hayes, who provided the voice of “Chef” was on board the entire time. It wasn’t until the guys set their sights on Scientology, the preferred metaphysical establishment of choice of African-American school lunch cooks in South Park that Mr. Hayes decided that his bosses had gone too far. He departed the show faster than Cartman can eat a bag of cheesy poofs.
No one likes to have their ideas and beliefs challenged. If we weren’t completely certain that we were right about all that we hold true, life would be very confusing. Yet, I posit that it is the characteristic of an enlightened mind to be able to rationally weigh evidence and make our decisions based on fact, even when it contradicts our earlier held beliefs. Trouble is, I don’t always deal with enlightened minds, and even when I do (and I’m sure that you’re one of them), considering alternate points of view can be challenging. I’m as guilty as the next guy when it comes to fist shaking at those with whom I disagree. When presented with sufficient evidence that should change my mind, I will sometimes cling to my earlier held notion because it’s familiar and comfortable, like an old T-shirt that has perhaps one too many holes in it.
If there is a point that I am trying to make with all of this (and I’m not entirely certain that there is), it is that while I appreciate the support I get from those who may agree with me on any given topic, I am not foolish enough to believe that those same supporters will be in my corner of the ring the next time I click that “Publish” button on my blog. My biggest fan last week may become my biggest detractor this week. We all have our own distinct set of perspectives and we catalog them in varying fashions. I don’t think there are two people anywhere who have duplicate thoughts on everything and sooner or later, disagreement is inevitable. When that happens, feel free to shout at the top of your lungs (or in the case of my blog, just type a comment because honestly, we both know I won’t be able to hear you) and let me know. It is not my purpose in life (and certainly not with this blog) to get people to agree with me or to please anyone. I write, you read and what happens next is up for grabs.