Monthly Archives: December 2012

Westboro Baptist Church – The Good Guys?

Westboro Baptist Church at the United Nations ...

Westboro Baptist Church at the United Nations headquarters in New York City, on the day of Pope Benedict’s address to the UN General Assembly. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I’ve been thinking about Westboro Baptist Church recently and the reasons that they do the horrible things that they do, and I have finally concluded that they do this because they are, in fact, the good guys.

Now before you go postal on me, hear me out.

Everyone agrees that these people engage depraved and inhuman acts, and that any person with even a smidgen of respect or compassion for their fellow-man couldn’t possibly contemplate acting the way they do.

But what happens when WBC announce  they are going to protest at a funeral?

People are outraged and fight back by supporting the very things that WBC are (apparently) against.  Members of the public show up to support gay rights, surround funerals and schools, and band together in support and solidarity in ways that only ever happen in a time of crisis.

Students block Westboro Baptist Church

Students block WBC

These uplifting stories of support against WBC are publicized in the news, shared on Facebook, discussed at the water cooler and people start to feel good about themselves again.  The net result of these acts of gross insensitivity is an outpouring of public support and the coming together of society as a whole against a common enemy – in this case WBC.

And perhaps that is WBC’s point.  A sort of grand scale Reductio ad absurdum that forces society to openly admit that being gay or Jewish isn’t actually wrong.  Read the book called Frindle and you’ll understand where I am coming from.

So here is my hope:  that members of WBC are actually so committed to furthering gay rights that they are willing to sacrifice their credibility and personal safety in the name of the greater good.

Either that…or they really are a bunch of evil douchebags.


Filed under Life - or something like it, The Human Condition

John Stepper

The idea of working out loud – using social platforms to make your work observable and to narrate your work in progress – is becoming more popular. Yet even some who see the value of working out loud will say it’s not right for them.

“I don’t like to toot my own horn.”

“I’m more comfortable quietly doing a good job.”

“It’s fine for extraverts, but what about everybody else?”

Well, working out loud is good for introverts, too – maybe especially so. Here’s why.

The power of introverts

Over 3 million people have viewed Susan Cain’s TED Talk on “The power of introverts.”

In a culture where being social and outgoing are prized above all else, it can be difficult, even shameful, to be an introvert. But…introverts bring extraordinary talents and abilities to the world, and should be encouraged and celebrated.

And in her book, “Quiet”, she makes a…

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Filed under Education, Life - or something like it, Technology, The Human Condition