Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Sticks And Stones...

Through my blog over the last two years, I have come to be blessed by many like minded women.  I have been encouraged, challenged and guided in truth.  Because of this my faith has grown and I feel closer and more settled as a follower of Jesus Christ.  But as we acknowledge that the internet is packed to the brim with useful information, new ideas and like minded people...we must also acknowledge that there are people who choose to troll through this vast space with hateful, evil words who wish to hurt us and distract us from Christ.

I have often wondered why some people would choose to leave hate filled comments and emails for me to read.    I have published some negative comments (provided that they are free of expletives and are not linked to vulgar sites) as I feel that in doing so it will encourage other believers to stand firm against atheists and other haters of God.  Most of the negative comments I receive I do not publish, simply due to them having sexual references, being expletive filled and/or that they are linked to offensive sites.  I initially (perhaps naively) figured that if someone strongly disagreed with what I write, that they would simply choose not to read here (far too simple huh?!)  But now I have come to know that there are some people who, even though I will not publish their comments still repeatedly choose to verbally attack me. 

There are also those 'ladies' who visit my blog through links provided in 'fundie bashing' websites.  I find it pathetic that they feel the need to copy and paste posts that I have written and have a rant about it.  It is actually funny that in doing so, they are bumping my sitemeter up quite a bit, so to those people....thank you I guess!   I wonder about the fact, that my spelling mistakes are the highlight of what they write about...maybe the old adage of "small things amuse small minds" is true for them?

To those people who leave such comments or rant about me on other websites, please ask yourselves why you continue to read here and/or comment about me, if you "hate" me so much.  If our faith/parenting/lifestyle/marriage/clothing is so offensive to you why do you repeatedly comment on it?  ...When you leave me expletive filled messages and emails it only causes me to wonder why you are so angry at God?  I know Satan is working through you, to try and distract me from following Christ; to cause me to anger and lose sight of Him.  Your ignorant words will only encourage me to cling to Him more tightly.  I will not hate you no matter what you write about me or my family.  I will never cease to write Gods truth here, to encourage and challenge other Christians.  I will not pray for your demise...only that you will in time, come to know Christ and will accept Him as your saviour.


Twinkle Toes said...

They are obviously just angry/bitter about stuff in their lives and that prompts them to lash out at others. It's so silly (IMO) to sit around "snarking" on all these blogs. What really is the point?? If you don't like it don't read it, or hey even write a blog that's completely the opposite, but why sit around a pick on people?

I know several blogs they are doing this to and figure it's only a matter of time 'til they get to mine, but honestly it reminds me of a few verses...Some about busy bodies and gossips...Ps 101:5, 1 Peter 1:4, some about bitterness...Romans 3:14, Pro 14:10, Pro 17:22, and some about persecution...Deut 30:7, Matt 5:10-12,Matt 5:44.

It's really kinda funny that they pick on such absurd things like spelling and grammar and if you read through their stuff...It's chock FULL of spelling and grammar errors!

Don't let it bother you! Just keep living for the Lord and know you're doing what's right for HIM and that's all that matters! :D

Chelle said...

I think you write wonderful post. I can't believe how people are. I am beginning to see it more and more. I agree with you. If they don't like what you write why read it. Keep encouraged. I read and love what you write. You have encouraged me many times.

Sarah said...

Thank you kind ladies! I am grateful for your kind words and support! Believe me when I say, that no amount of nastiness will cause me to lose sight of the Lord, and I will look to Him to show me how to reach/encourage more ladies in Christ!

Elizabeth said...

This is a novel thought: when I come across a blog that I don't like/agree with, I *gasp* don't read it. Crazy logic, I know. I really have better things to do than to preoccupy myself with what I deem to be rubbish. The truth of it is that when people try to belittle others, they actually show how immature they actually are.

There was a time when people could be respectful and could disagree and argue their points with tact. Some people think they've "won" an debate if they've insulted their opponent more times.

When I get an ugly comment, I find myself thinking, "Is your life so empty and meaningless that you have time to pick me apart ... and then trouble yourself to actually author an entire comment over it?!? I just can't be bothered. lol

Anonymous said...

It's for the same reason that you post about abortion, Catholicism, vaccines, films and the Big Bang theory (just looking at your latest few posts).

We think you are wrong and that your beliefs are dangerous.

- Julie paradox from FreeJinger

Margaret said...

Ironically, I have run across a number of great blogs thanks to the hate-sites, one in particular. :D

Eh. Personally, I would ignore them. Completely.

Some people do have a valid beef with some other people. There are, unfortunately, sinners and charlatans under the fundamentalism umbrella, and those people have hurt others and give the rest of us a bad name.

But some of the hatred is irrational or based on skewed perception. As in, there is nothing you can do or say to make yourself OK, because you are bad by virtue of your beliefs and therefore anything you do or say is bad. That kind of stuff, it's just pointless to waste emotional energy on.

There is also a kind of in-between thing that goes on--I might agree with a person in principle, or have no trouble with their viewpoint, but their presentation is aggressive, emotionally manipulative, or just plain mean, and that tends to draw snark too.

Understanding that there is sometimes genuine hurt behind the attacks, and also genuine misunderstanding in some cases, season your words with grace and let unmerited attacks roll off you like water off a duck's back. :)

Anonymous said...

I participate in Free Jinger and read blogs I disagree with because I was raised in and around fundie beliefs and have seen and experienced first hand the physical, emotional, and spiritual abuse that runs rampant through the fundie lifestyle. Plus, seeing the harmful beliefs that have haunted my life dissected and made fun of is one of the best ways to break the hold they have over me. I am a Christian and I live a much more freeing, joyfilled life since I have started reading Free Jinger.

Anne - FormerGothardite from Free Jinger

Sarah said...

Anna, I am sorry that you feel you were negatively affected by your childhood. However I am not abusing anyone; I am simply putting forth my own point of view on my own blog. I do blog about controversial issues for sure... to offer my own opinion and to also provide information to others who are interested. I do not trawl the internet with a gang of vipers attacking individual persons. Also the members of the site you mention are not really commenting on my 'awful' belief system, but rather my typing mistakes, clothing and discussing whether I would be more use as a hat rack! Hardly a fair or reasoned attack!

Sarah said...

Julie - So you think I'm wrong and my beliefs are dangerous? I look to Christ to lead me not other people.

I do not hide behind an internet alias, disabled hyperlinks, anonymous comments, or a website full of others like me. I have never personally attacked anyone here. I have never made fun of any individual here to give myself and others a malicious laugh.

I know; as does God, that my intentions for what I write are true and good. I don't know how many of you can say the same about what you are writing about me?

Becca Boo said...

Sarah, some of your beliefs are dangerous. For example, there are many homosexuals who kill themselves because they feel bad about themselves. What do you do about that? You write a post about how sinful and awful they are. You show no compassion, and you manage to come across as hateful.

Of course it's upsetting for others Christians who try to have a more humble approach. You give Christianity a bad name.

Jenny said...

I have posted over at Free Jinger when my blog hits jumped. I like to know who is reading my blog so I went and introduced myself!

There are some really nice posters over there - some of the language is a little aggressive but it is certainly an interesting site for debate.

Lynn said...

Sarah, I'm the OP from the thread from FJ. Normally I'd link back to my blog so I'm not "hiding behind anonymity," but I don't think you'd even read it, my blog is probably what you might consider "vulgar."

But I will say I am sorry about the hat-rack comment, that was out of line.

The thing is, I've seen the damage that fundamentalism can do to a person up close and personal. I've seen it destroy relatives, friends of my family, and I've even seen its claws get into my own mother. And in every situation, it started with supposedly "harmless" things like trying to read the bible more, or wanting to have a better relationship with their spouse. It's led to nothing but despair for everyone involved. My dad's best friend's son committed suicide after his mother joined a fundamentalist church, and she thought he was gay (he wasn't- he had a girlfriend at the time) and disowned him. My aunt lost her entire life's savings because she invested in some "missonary program" that was supposed to spread the Gospel to people around the world. The pastor skipped town with $15,000 (USD) of my aunt's money, as well as quite a bit more, from other people. I've seen my own mother go from being the relatively friendly, warm person she used to be, to a cold, legalistic, obsessed fundamentalist. She's doing better recently, but it's still very difficult. One of my own friends nearly lost her child after following some bad advice from a church group, suggesting that she not take him to the doctor and instead feed him goat milk. Someone else I know committed suicide shortly after marriage, because her husband started abusing her and the religion said that divorce was wrong.

I bear you no ill will, but stuff like what you write is always how it starts. I hope that you come to your senses and you don't end up dead, broke, or severely depressed as a result of your choices. I snark to try to make some sense of what happened to people around me, and so I can gain the knowledge to keep similar things from happening to other people I care about.

I don't hate you. There are only a few people in this world that I can honestly say I hate, and trust me, you haven't done nearly anything bad enough to make that list.

I won't say that my humor isn't caustic, and I can probably come across as quite obnoxious, and that's putting it mildly. I get that. I apologize for upsetting you, but other than the hat-rack comment? I stand by my position, and it is my hope that you can get out before your life is destroyed.

Anonymous said...

So, Becca Boo, if a "fundie" kills herself because of your disagreement with her beliefs and/or lifestyle should you be tried and found guilty for your lack of compassion?

Twinkle Toes said...

Leviticus 18:22, Leviticus 20:13, 1 Corinthians 6:9-10, Romans 1:26-27...I think they all make it pretty clear that homosexuality is a SIN, therefore anyone doing so is sinful. It also makes it clear that God thinks it's an ABOMINATION! Pretty strong words I say! The homosexuals whom you reference to...I seriously doubt that they kill themselves just because they "feel bad" about themselves. It's more like they know what they are doing is wrong and they choose to not stop, and can no longer stand their conscience being pricked every time they willingly choose to sin.

Like I said previously...It seems to me the "snarks" are just bitter/angry about their past and enjoy picking on others because of it. Kinda like the schoolyard bully! And it's not just that they don't agree and want to logically present arguments/points. They are personally attacking and "nitpicking" on the silliest things! Ie...Spelling and grammar (see above to see some of their examples of how wonderful they spell or how correct their grammar actually is.), clothing, ways you describe your children, how you decorate your home, etc... It's not attacking or discussing beliefs, it's attacking the blogger.

I'm honestly amazed too at how many of them call themselves Christians. From all of Jesus' teachings I don't get that He would be ok or pleased with the behaviors they are exhibiting. I'd say He would be appalled and sickened by them. What He went through in His death and resurrection should be our example on how to behave under persecution (whether real or perceived). He was UNJUSTLY accused and sentenced to death, He was beaten beyond recognition, His beard was plucked out of His face, His back was ripped to shreds by strips of leather laced with bits of bone and rock, a "crown" of thorns was jammed into His head, spikes (think railroad spikes, not penny nails) were driven into His hands and feet, His side was pierced by a spear, He was so sick by that point that He had no blood, but water come out of His wounds and yet even then...He wasn't "snarking" at those people, He wasn't judging or condemning of them, He wasn't criticizing their clothing or the way they raise their children...Instead He cried out "Father FORGIVE them..." Why don't all you "snarkers" who "claim" to be followers of Christ, try behaving as He would? Why don't you think what He would do before you comment? If you truly see something "dangerous" why can't you simply state that instead of attacking the person?

Some of your perceptions probably are skewed by your past. I think you'd get a lot further if you presented your "arguments" in love, rather than attacked in anger/bitterness.

Becca Boo said...

To anon. first of all, how would that possibly be the same? Homosexuality is not a "life-style". It's not something that you can change. On the other hand, you can change your beliefs.

There's a difference between a) targeting an innocent group of people and calling them perverted and b) simply stating that such statements are over the line and not Christian-like (which I did).

Furthermore, homosexuals is an exposed group of people, which fundies are not.

Twinkle Toes said...

@Lynn~That was a surprisingly nice comment! (I was surprised with the niceness I mean :D) Most of the comments are just so hateful. I can definitely see where you're coming from!

That is so sad that people were compelled to kill themselves over such things. And the baby dying is just absurd. To not take your child to the doctor when there's obviously something WRONG is neglect and sickening.

I am not speaking for Sarah, but I know for me, the issue isn't that you have a site that "snarks" on the fundies. The issue is the comments that fundies get. The hateful, you're good for nothing but a hat-rack, I hope your baby dies, and other such things along with foul, vulgar comments that are filled with hate!

The picking on people, not their blog. The assuming that goes on.

That's the "issue".

I can see from what you say that you have a concern for the safety and wellbeing of "fundies". (whether necessary or not) But can you say the same about everyone on your site?

I am not seeking attention, I already get plenty without being on your "site". I live a very boring ordinary life with my family. I blog for fun, not to get hate mail.

And to prove my point about assumptions ...several people "assumed" (wrongly) that I didn't take my son to the doctor when he got burned and that I diagnosed my children with croup and bronchitis and upper respiratory infections. I did think he had a second degree burn when it happened. I did put aloe vera gel on it. I then hopped in the car and took him to the ER to have it checked by a doctor. My children with croup/bronchitis/upper respiratory infections were seen and diagnosed in the doctors office. (yes, I had already diagnosed them with croup, kinda "easy" to diagnose, and was concerned that it seemed to be going into their chest)

To assume that someone does or doesn't do something that isn't mentioned is absurd and unfair! Just because I fall under YOUR label of "fundie" doesn't mean I'm as foolish or insane as others under your label.

Personally I don't see anything wrong with you having your "snarking" site. I believe in freedom of speech, for you and me! While I may not agree with your site, it is your right to have it...But it's not right when people don't just comment on your site. They find us "fundies" on your site and start leaving horrible, hateful, mean comments directed at us, our husband or our children!

I do think some of your worries are legitimate. I have a major problem with people un-schooling. I don't think the government should be controlling us, but I do think that just because you're not accountable to someone/something, doesn't mean you should take advantage of that and not teach your children. I'd say a lot of the spelling errors are silly, esp since there is spell check. But sometimes it's a typo, not an actual spelling error. And to be quite honest, there is no perfect person out there. Can you say that EVERY public school teacher out there spells perfectly all the time? Or even that they have perfect grammar all the time? Obviously not. People make mistakes. But that doesn't disqualify them from teaching their children. Homeschooling (when done properly) actually lets you learn along with them. So anything you didn't learn in the "wonderful" public schools, you can figure out while teaching them. Or you can re-learn stuff you've forgotten! Just because someone wants to give their children a better education than they feel they would get at a public school doesn't mean they will fail because their spelling is atrocious! Or that they will have dumb children because their grammar stinks!

Yes, I read your site. I was curious to see what you said about me since I saw that I had hits from there.

Wow, that was lengthy! I guess all that's to say...Your site doesn't bother me, the hateful, personal comments that fundies get DO!

Twinkle Toes said...

Sarah~I'm sorry! I guess I kind of went off and that wasn't very nice of me to do on your blog! I'm the oldest and tend to be a "protector" type personality...Drives my husband nuts sometimes 'cause I'm constantly defending everybody!

But I'm sorry if I've caused any problems for you on your blog! :D

Doomed Harlot said...

I'm a regular commenter at Free Jinjer though I have never commented on your blog, and never read your blog before now.

I am surprised by the suggestion that those who disagree with a blog should simply not read it. The fact is that you are part of a movement that seeks to have a major influence in the world in general and my country (the U.S.) in particular. (I am not sure if you are in the U.S. too but I am guessing you are.) Fundies seek to roll back women's rights, outlaw abortion, end tolerance for gay people, interfere with science education in the public classrooms, and remake the U.S. government into a conservative Christian institution.

For those of us who oppose these goals, it is very important to criticize the the arguments which I understand your blog promotes. (Again if I am wrong about your position on any of these things, I apologize. Not having read your blog, I am assuming you are typical of most of the blogs we discuss at Free Jinjer.) Mockery and humor are, I think, valid parts of the debate and criticism. Some ideas, or the way they are carried out, are absurd and should be laughed at.

Despite the laughter and snarking, however, I think you would find a number of very thoughtful discussions at Free Jinjer. While I know it is not fun to be laughed at yourself, I would encourage you to spend some more time reading it and perhaps even participate. Though you may get some tough comments, fundies who engage in good faith can find themselves having an interesting discussion over there.

Doomed Harlot said...

I should also mention that if anyone is swearing at you or wishing death on you or your family members, that is not typical at all of Free Jinjer. While Free Jinjer is a public site that anyone can join, I would be very surprised indeed if any regular commenter from Free Jinjer sent you such comments.

I also disagree with you that it matters in any way whether commenters are anonymous. It is the ideas that matter, not the identity of the person. I choose to be anonymous on the internet so I can express myself more freely; I don't have to temper what I say in order to please people in my regular life.

As for the link-breaking at Free Jinjer, my understanding is that there are a couple of purposes to that. We WANT to hear what fundies want to say. Many of us are fascinated by your movement. The idea behind link-breaking is that we don't want our discussion to cause fundies to take their blogs down or go private.

Personally, I don't agree with the link-breaking practice because I figure you all are going to figure out we are talking about you anyway. And I would rather you know what we are saying, and maybe think about it a bit, or come over and chat with us!

Sue said...

Ha this is so funny, free jinger people think your beliefs are dangerous so they act like teen girls and make a slam book website, to make fun of blogs like yours! Funny how when I read stuff on that website very little had to do with beliefs. It is mostly insulting people about their hair, dress, they even make fun of peoples children! How low is that! Yes their are some people who believe like us that have done things wrong. Just like there are non Christians who have done wrong things also. I could bring up hundreds of times I read, or heard about teachers that molest or abuse children. Does that mean all teachers are dangerous and we shouldn't have school? I know doctors that have abused children, so they all must be dangerous of course! That is just stupid. You could apply that to everything, just because someone was mistreated by someone who had beliefs like me doesn't mean I am just like them. Seriously get a life, it is sad you spend yours lurking blogs you hate just to insult them. Oh wait that's called trying to "protect" people from our "dangerous beliefs" This is why I have a private blog, to many of you free jinger wack jobs on here.