Tuesday, October 29, 2019
There are a lot of sane ones too
Most people aren't nuts. Most people are sane enough. And smart. So it occurred to me Sunday, sharing yet another Alan P. Leonard letter—the sixth—that I was perhaps doing my readers a disservice by being a valve where only the toxically vindictive can pass through to join the cyber wordstorm.
Actually, it didn't occur then. But later, cleaning off my desk. Sometimes the thing devolves to a mass of business cards, electronic cords, receipts, clippings, rubber bands and discarded Post-It Notes, and I have to just dive in and start filing and flinging into the garbage can.
There, I usually find a letter or three, so interesting and well-reasoned that I set it aside to contemplate at my leisure and then answer in some witty, measured way, but invariably never do.
Such as this, from David Stein, who has been writing to me for years. He offers some worthwhile advice—"QUIT FACEBOOK"—supporting it in a strong and articulate fashion. "Really, what would happen if you opted out?"
I don't know, I'd ... ah ... disappear. Actually, the image he offers, "the Untouchable of Northbrook," with his begging bowl and the neighbors averting their eyes, sounds about right. This business is all about clicks, right now, and Facebook is the biggest pond where we fish for them. Anyway, there's some good lines in this, a bit of Orwell, and I felt guilty just pitching it after it sat on my desk for ... ulp ... two years, judging by his mention of naked women, which I think is a reference to this column about Howard Tullman's art collection, which got banned from Facebook for violating community standards by reproducing a photo of the risque artworks I was talking about. Anyway, it's a good read. Thanks to Dave, and to all the readers who take the time to write in, and deserve a response, even though I don't always have the time to send one.