Thursday, August 21, 2008

Is it personal? How can it not be? Long rant to follow -

I received an e-mail a few weeks back from a reader who wanted to chastise me for my "tone" here on VTC.  This reader said that she could tell within a few sentences which posts were from me and which were from Kelly and that mine had a more personal feel to them.  That's probably true.  Kelly and I have discussed this as well.

The thing is, I am neither a professional apologist or a professional writer.  I started blogging because I feel things and have strong opinions and I needed to have a place to express them because honestly - there are only so many hours in the day to bounce things off of my very patient husband!

I started this blog because I felt a strong sense of injustice and the need to be able to set the record straight about the truth of what the Catholic church teaches. That's just me.  If I can try to right a wrong or provide clarification, I'd like to try to do that.

Contrary to what I think many people think from reading Candy's side of it (providing they can even find anything in her well-hidden archives) the first ad hominem attacks were aimed at me, not vice versa.  Some might remember the "Elena and her minions" post.  I would also point out that it was she that posted a picture of my house and street name - not the other way around.

And despite this, VTC has been held to a higher standard.  One that we have certainly tried to aspire to and  Kelly's informative and well-written posts have certainly helped. However, at times I have felt that this imposed standard has acted as a gag, to the point that I haven't written things that should have been said for the sake of taking the high road.

But the truth is VTC is not an apologetics machine.  I never intended this to be solely a place to be able to spew out apologetics whenever Candy inserts her dime into her anti-Catholic propoganda machine.  And that's how it has felt at times.

So with that in mind I want to share some thoughts.  We have been going at it here for well over a year.  Some of you might remember that last year at this time I was even thinking of closing the blog because it looked Candy was going to settle down to her housekeeping topics and leave the Catholics alone.   When that didn't happen, we came back full strength, adding bloggers and articles and trying to educate and inform to the best of our ability.  But about, I don't know, probably by New Years, I started wondering why this wasn't having any effect or at least opening a dialogue.  How is it that a reasonable, logical, conscienteous Christian not at least look at our counters to some of these articles and not amend their position a bit, or at least come back reasonable counters themselves.  That just never happened.

And then a couple of other encounters with Candy have clarified things for me.  When she posted her curriculum recently I sent a short two word comment "art?  music?."    That enquiry got me banned and sent to some wild place called whenever I clicked on Candy's site.  Thereafter she has been sure to include art and music in her curriculum.  But interestingly this wasn't a criticism.  I was simply asking.  And to question is what got me into trouble.  It seems that as far as Candyland goes, there are facts, they are final and they are not to be questioned or criticized, although Candy reserves the right to alter her views quietly - as if they always were her views!

Then yesterday I politely e-mailed her regarding the removal of my Charlotte Mason link:
Candy, it's fine with me if you don't want to post a comment or if you didn't find the link I provided helpful. I would appreciate it however if you did not alter my comments. If you don't want to use it just don't include it. Thanks in advance.
After going back and forth a couple of times because Candy "wasn't sure what I was talking about" she said some things that absolutely floored me. She said she removed the link because she doesn't trust me.  She allowed anonymous to post it and then knew it was legit -but later said that she thought I was anonymous.  It made no sense.  Posting the comment without the link made no sense. She ended with:

Elena, I was trying to be nice to you, but not deleting all of your comment. I no longer have ANY interested in trying to deal with you. I am now shaking the dush off of my feet, and will not cast my pearls before swine.

If you continue to email me this garbage, then I will put your email into my filtering system, so that it automatically gets trashed, and I won't have to see it anymore.

So long. I'm sticking with what I said in our previous email conversations. I'M NOT PLAYING YOUR GAME. I don't go to your sick site, and I have NO INTEREST in conversing with you.

Remember when I said I'm done? Well, I haven't changed my mind. I'm still DONE. Just leave me alone, and go live your life. I won't upset you by publishing any more of your comments.
And that's when it hit me, although I guess I've really known it for some time.  This isn't a conversation.  This isn't two Christians trying to find a middle ground, trying to understand each other, even rejoicing in the parts we do agree with as sisters in Christ.  This is providing information to folks who are looking for it.  VTC is the alternative news so to speak.  This is the place to get the other side.  And the irony of all of this to me at least is that politically speaking, as Americans, Candy and I see pretty much eye to eye.  She values her freedom to write whatever she chooses.   I too support and defend freedom - but I value truth first.

And because we do have a no-bashing policy and I realize this could easily turn into one, I'm turning off the comments.  (my e-mail still works though)  Thanks for letting me vent.

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