A couple weeks ago we quoted excerpts of Minnesota Public Radio Commentator Carrie Daklin calling for more civility in the debate over same-sex marriage.
Today she reveals that simply because we picked up some of her points, she has been inundated by hateful attacks in response.
We of course had no intention of exposing her to such treatment, but hope that the experience may have served to confirm for her how much we need brave voices to continue calling for civility in this debate.
Here's some of what Carrie wrote today:
There must be a group of advocates who watch that website for anything that might conflict with their point of view. Within days, my words, taken completely out of context, and my message -- better manners -- had been used as the basis for a rallying cry: Carrie Daklin of Minnesota is a homophobe.
I am not sure how my message got so skewed. I have become the object of hate mail and really vicious comments, all in the name of etiquette. Go figure.
I found this all rather unsettling.
... What has happened in our culture, that so many of us are completely unable to accept someone who doesn't share our views? I don't agree with all that my conservative Christian friends espouse, but I support their right to their beliefs. I don't agree with a very liberal friend who said certain members of the religious right should be shot. Actually, he used the word murdered. Sadly, I think he meant it.
In retrospect, the original infraction I wrote about is positively innocuous compared to the resulting uproar. To be blunt: My article was not about gay rights, it was not about the Defense of Marriage Act, and it most certainly was not a promotion for the National Organization for Marriage.
My article was on civility, it was on manners and respect for other people, it was on public decency even toward those you might not agree with. It was about creating a conduit in our society that allows for the paradigms and values of others, so that we can get to a place of compromise. It was about working to replace anger with a tolerance that allows us to thrive.
In the last few weeks I have been a poster child for extremism -- the left vilifying me, the right holding me up as some sort of hero. Both make me equally uncomfortable. Both are unwanted. If I am a poster child for anyone, it is Emily Post.