11/05/08: THIS POST HAS BEEN EDITED IN AN ATTEMPT TO MAKE AMENDS. ALTHOUGH I STAND BY MY ASSERTIONS, IT'S CLEAR THAT THOSE MENTIONED IN THIS POST WERE OFFENDED. THAT WAS NOT MY INTENT AND SO I HAVE REMOVED ALL REFERENCE TO THE INDIVIDUALS INVOLVED.
A funny thing happens when you post about controversial topics, you get controversial comments. Now, in and of itself, that is a good thing. How can we possibly grow as people if we never consider a point of view that is different than our own. I actually like it when people disagree with my position and are able to convey their thoughts in a logical, unemotional argument. My post on the Chicago Public School's proposed "walk out" to protest per pupil spending discrepancies generated just those kinds of arguments, and a few others.
Before anyone questions my blogger integrity, I did ask XXX and XXX for their permission to use their comments and post, and they both graciously allowed my indulgence, and
I'll admit, I was a bit taken aback by XXX responses to my post, more specifically, parts of her second response.
If I understand correctly, you went to school to be a paralegal. I wouldn't exactly call that "college educated". I'd call that a vocation.This was, in my opinion, an emotional response and not meant to validate her argument, but rather to belittle mine. In her defense, she claims that was not the case - it was an honest mistake, but it is this type of response that loses me in a debate. It isn't factual, yet was presented as fact. Even if it were, it in no way relates to parents becoming involved in their kids' education - the main point of my post.
Perhaps you didn't intend to come off they way you did at least to my eyes, but I think it's a bit wrong to think your child deserves better simply b/c you live in a rich neighborhood and the factory worker's kid doesn't deserve that same opportunity.I do feel that if I work hard, my family should benefit from that hard work. I didn't just arbitrarily find myself in a "rich neighborhood," I worked hard to get here. It wasn't dumb luck, a lottery win or a trust fund, but rather embracing and realizing opportunity. It was setting priorities and goals and striving towards accomplishing those even when there were significant setbacks.
What I now know about XXX is that she grew up in a "low income" home in a poor area with a struggling and depressed single mother. I would assume that she has a bias that clouded her ability to see the main point of my post. She felt I was putting her down and she fought back.
Then there was XXX. He actually published a post and then deleted it from his blog. Although technically it is no longer on his blog, it was, and is, available in its entirety on any RSS feed reader. [EDIT: XXX has since re-posted his response on his blog, along with unmarked edits and all (?) of the original comments] He wrote, in part:
Its interesting that people who 'work' for a living are the biggest complainers...try 'creating' see how hard that is. We NEED all of you people -people like, like Dana that feel superior and do some kind of 'work' that is 'superior' to the people that keep the airport clean more superior than the the rest of you "people" you are all perfectly good little office 'grunts' basic 'lowlifes' because you are below the college education of say- Dana ...me I just make art and it does all right by me...... and I appreciate every single person I ever come across - slow like the slow child or quick witted like the neighbor. I think education comes from________fill in the blank.XXX's writing can be a bit abstract at times, however this was pretty clear. His perception is that I feel superior than "the people that keep the airport clean (snip) perfectly good little office 'grunts' basic 'lowlifes'" and, I can reasonably extrapolate that he perceives me as someone without appreciation for the people I come in contact with daily. OUCH!
XXX did say in a follow-up email, "I had this opinion last night but then had a change of heart this morning....I felt bad singling you out as you probably voice an opinion had by many and I didn't want to seem like I was picking on you because I am not."
[EDIT: Apparently he's had a change of heart on this as well and attempts to "blame" it one me for "bringing him back into this" when he had the opportunity to decline my request. Hmmmmm - agenda?]
All that I can reasonably assume is that XXX has a disdain for people he perceives as feeling superior - not just superior towards him, but superior towards anyone. Like Fairy Flutters, he felt a personal attack at some level and he fought back.
I'd tell you I was shocked by their perceptions, but I've heard them before. It makes me sad - sad that I am not able to communicate my position in a way that is logical, yet empathetic. I've never quite been able to put it into words, but Matt-Man (with a little help from Schmoop) was able to. He wrote:
Smug. There it is. I debate in a matter-of-fact tone, I stick to the topic of debate, I detach myself emotionally, and it is sometimes perceived as smug. My own bias towards protecting my emotional vulnerability is likely the culprit. I know that identified weaknesses are easy targets for those looking to take aim. I've learned to minimize those targets - at all costs.Schmoop has pointed out to me that when I argue or debate with others, I am always cool, calm, collected, and matter of fact. She knows that I have very little little feeling of any kind of grandeur, but to others it can come off as smug.I can see how this type of thing can apply to you. You know why? Because like me, when you do debate you stick to your facts without interjecting visceral statements. (although I do DO interject sarcasm, if I know it's gonna piss the other person off, Hee Hee)
There is a price for emotional protection - it's called smug. Smug isn't me - just a perception of me - a perception that really is critically flawed.