As a kid, I always wanted to go to Neverland. No parents, pirate duels, mermaids- the place seemed like heaven. But Neverland was always hiding dark secrets- lonely children, crocdile, and sirens luring you towards the rocks. That beautiful dream can be so easily clouded by the evil if you let it.
It’s no secret that I have a low tolerance for unethical people and bullies. I always start by assuming people are good and smart and time and time again I’m disappointed by their actions. I am sick of seeing people and organizations forcing their opinions on others because they are so incredibly threatened by the fact that their beliefs are not shared by everyone. They’re terrified of dangerous ideas- of having to confront their beliefs and possibly find out they were wrong.
Just because something is legal does not mean it is ethical. Just because the law, or a lawyer, tells you that you can do somethign doesn’t mean it’s ok. Your actions have consequences- your reporting affects lives. Taking your self-centered, one-sided vendetta out on those who don’t deserve it isn’t going to further your cause. It isn’t going to change anyones minds. At most you’ll get 15 minutes of fame and a whole lot of negative karma. No one wants to spend a lifetime as a banana slug because they couldn’t suck it up and admit when they were wrong.
The other issue here is that the media is giving these people an outlet. Telling their stories, letting them scream in to the abyss, giving them their 15 minutes of fame. If the media stopped paying attention to radical, attention straved groups, what would they do? These people and organizations are like Tinkerbell- stop clapping and they’ll go away.
Newspapers would do well to fact check themselves before they wreck themselves. Irresponsible reporting can hurt a situation just as badly, and probably makes things a lot worse. A career built upon the ruined reputations of others isn’t a career at all- it’s a disgrace. Those so desperate to rise to the top that they trample others will never be up there long. Big trees (and crocodiles) fall hard. Find truth. Search for it. Demand it. It might not always be pretty, but it’s better than building your success by diminishig others’ accomlishments. And to those who have to power to stop it: stand up and say no. Not here. Not now.
Just because you don’t understand something doesn’t make it wrong. Just because it’s different doens’t mean it shouldn’t be taught. And doing a little digging for the facts will save you a lot of trouble in the long run. You can run for a while, but the truth catches up with you. Why not choose intergrity, and honesty and maybe, just maybe, that childhood dream of Neverland can shine bringtly again.
A dangerous idea isn’t dangerous because it’s wrong- it’s dangerous because it challenges you. Because it fources you to stand toe to toe with your beliefs and either accept them or change them.