I started my blog – and followed other blogs – for all things writing and book related. I’ve enjoyed bloggers’ poetry, narrative writing, and photography. I’ve learned much from the ruminations of bloggers I’ve followed – new insights about writing, ideas for marketing, updates on the publishing world. Along the way, I’ve felt closer to many of you when you shared personal experiences, both the positives and the negatives. I haven’t always agreed with a post’s slant on life, but I’m open to fresh perspectives.
To a point. . . .
Recently, some of you may have noticed (or not) that I have stopped following your blogs. There probably will be more as time goes on. The reason is narrowly focused: I did NOT follow your blog to read hatred, negativity, and extreme political views.
There is so much venom spewed in the press, on TV, and on line. I don’t want it to spill over into my writing time (I include blogging, both reading and writing, in that block of time). Because of the extremes of viewpoints, I don’t wish to share my personal views. If I’m a liberal, I don’t want to be deemed a Snowflake. If I’m conservative, I don’t want to be called a deplorable or a racist. I’m offended by both narrow assignments of individual personal or political viewpoints. And I don’t want to waste my time away from the negativity of the world around me reading more negativity.
I am an American. I am a writer. I am a reader. I am a dog lover (cats are okay, too). I’m a knitter. I’m a skier/snowshoer, boater, canoer. I’m a living, breathing person in a free country. I form my own reactions and opinions about anything going on around me, including in the political sphere.
But when I’m in my writing time, I’m just a writer and a reader. I don’t want any of that tainted by leftist or rightist extremism. I don’t want my writing time tainted by anything that isn’t directly related to the creative arts and how to make my way in that world. I will unfollow any blogger who spews hatred. I will block or ignore extremist friends on Facebook. I will unfollow any Twitter connections who tweet extreme points of view.
Extremism never led to anything good in the world. Check your history books. I wish we could learn to listen to each other, even debate – but without venom.
But until we return to civility, I will control what I have to read or hear.