Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Threatening Letter to a Fellow Blogger - Unacceptable!

Pa-Oh-tie...I think I'm just going to have to give you a cold shower, to chill you out and take your mind off of me...I wear sweatpants to bed and have red hair...not blonde, and I am so not exotic! But you are very cute.
Sharon...in regard to my ballroom dancing skills - null and void - although I did take ballet for nine years and jazz for five - loved jazz, even went from school to school performing, had a lot of fun! If I told any of my friends this here in Italy, they would laugh in my face. If I told my friends from high school that the members of the CI CIRCLE call me a cheerleader and peppy, they would laugh in my face, I was an athlete - so anti-cheerleaders. It's unbelievable how many people we can be in one lifetime. Sharon, Marlee Matlin on Dancing with the Stars would be an incredible event - live for you and your amazingly informative blog!

And now on to very serious things...
If you have not read Paula's blog today, please go and read it. Note this:

My comments elicited some support but also many angry blog posts and comments at HearingExchange and elsewhere online. I even received a threatening email from one person who warned me to stay away from the upcoming AG Bell convention. Measures are being taken against that person as the email has been reported to the appropriate authorities.

*steaming*

The idea that a person threatened a woman like Paula who has constructed a lifestyle based on trying to make the world a better place by providing valuable resources to people of all ages and degrees of deafness makes me step back and evaluate whether blogging and sharing ideas is really such a good idea. A blog is a safe haven to express one's opinions, random thoughts and personal thoughts that invites people to reflect and share their own feelings on issues addressed. Blogs give outsiders a glimpse of the blogger's soul and that concession of privacy must be respected. Of course people don't always agree with what is said, that is obvious, especially on deafread.com, but respect for such opinions must reign. God, to threaten Paula because she is a strong woman with ideals and conviction is the weakest, most pathetic maneuver by a sick person I have read about since I started blogging. I hope that at least for this blog, people reading THIS will go to Paula's blog and leave an encouraging comment, can you even imagine what she must be going through after such a violation?
In life we tend to focus on negative things instead of the positive. I always get on my mom's case for having washed my mouth out with soap (Irish Spring wintergreen - blah) because I said the word "shit." (as you can see, the soap treatment had no effect on my trashmouth) My mom always rebuts with, "You always remember the negative and never talk about all the positive things I've done for you as your mother!" Negativity hurts more than positive feedback heals. However, I hope in this case all of the wonderful commenters that comment here will take the time to help her heal.
Paula,
I am sending you a huge hug from the front of my computer. When you really care a lot about a person, in Italian you say "Ti Voglio Bene." Well, ti voglio tanto bene. Bacione,
Jodi

And then Karen Putz came along and left her comment (rotfl):
Karen said...
Mikey (McConnell) wrote: "That person is a PUTZ!

I have a rule for cyberbullies. No tolerance."

Hey, hey, HEY! Watch your language. I'm a Putz and proud of it. :)


Paula, babe, need a milkshake??

Here's a hug instead.

After last week's round of nasty emails and dumb comments, I've learned to dismiss the toxic people outta my life. There's enough nice people to focus on instead.

February 6, 2008 3:15 PM

26 comments:

Karen Mayes said...

Oh my god. I can't believe that some would go far to threaten Paula, all because of her opinion.

*Shake my head sadly*

Anonymous said...

Threatening is not helpful, however, power politics are power politics.

Cyberbullies are trying to scare you or Paula off, however, they are not the winners.

Staying on the right course where you are at is the right decision.

All we have to do is to chill them out. :-)

White Ghost

IamMine said...

*shaking head*

I do not agree with some of Paula's views, but this was totally uncalled for.

It's amazing how one could easily drag the entire group down. :(

I agree that it was totally unacceptable to threaten a blogger for stating her own opinion.

A Deaf Pundit said...

*sighs* I hope Paula reported the threat to the police. It deserves a full investigation and whoever made that threat needs to be held accountable. For the Deaf Community's sake, I hope it is not someone from the community.

Mike McConnell said...

That person is a PUTZ!

I have a rule for cyberbullies. No tolerance.

Paula Rosenthal said...

Jodi, once again your support from across the ocean is like a warm breeze. Thank you so much. You are a true friend and your words are comforting. Yes, I am strong. I know that my blog is of importance to many in the deaf and hard of hearing community. In the past 7 1/2 years I have helped thousands of people who came to HearingExchange to seek out support, advice and resources as they navigated their or their child's hearing loss journey.

After evaluating what happened, I decided that clarification was necessary. I truly believe that my words were misconstrued. I tend to be a moderate when it comes to politics as I always examine all sides of any issue whether it's deaf rights, abortion rights or whatever.

Just because I have chosen to raise my daughter with spoken language and two cochlear implants, doesn't mean that it is the right choice for others and I've always been very clear about that.

Nowhere in my Pepsi post did I say anything negative about the ad itself. I chose not to focus on what I thought of the ad other than that I thought it was funny. Rather, I looked at it from a business viewpoint and blogged about the ad dollars issue. That people misunderstood my intent of my post is disappointing.

Thanks again, Friend. Sending you love from the U.S.

Candy said...

No one should ever be subjected to threats! Thanks for bring this up!

Anonymous said...

It was probably a ruse--someone attempting to smear the reputation of others by using deceitful tricks.

SlackinPenguin said...

You know Jodi, I found DeafRead only very recently and I thought that I had found THE PLACE for deaf folks to get together online and have some real discussions and make some real progress forward. I thought, "wow, this is freakin' awesome!"

Over the last week or two that I've been here, I've seen nothing (save a few, including you) but a nasty mob mentality...folks out for blood apparently culminating in threats of bodily harm? I've seen nothing but the same immaturity that I saw when I attended a deaf residential school.

What a shame! DeafRead could have been so much better. It could have been a place of intelligent discourse, a place where bright minds could meet to chat, share stories, share ideas about a better future for the deaf world....

...if only deaf people would grow up!

Audism? Racism? Hate of any kind? You ain't seen nothing 'til you've been to DeafRead.

I mean, a blogger throws out something and then suddenly it's "yeah, yeah...I hate...I hate...me too...I agree...I hate...I hate".

WTF?

They don't even realize what fools they're making of themselves and they don't realize how hard their supposed "enemies" are laughing at them. They're also not realizing how much they're contributing to their cause. Take AGB, for instance, a hearing couple goes to them and says "we have a deaf child, what do we do? Should we teach him sign language and get him involved with the deaf community?" All AGB has to do is point at the deaf community who are screaming bloody murder all the time and say, "not unless you want your child to be like that...that's deaf culture for you".

Sigh.

All the best to you, Jodi, and your fellow bloggers who do try to make this a great place. May your positive influence eventually drown out all the negativity around here.

Cheers.

mishkazena said...

Paula and I have our strong differences in opinions. However I respect her as a person just like I expect people to respect me, whether they agree with my beliefs or not.

I do not condone any threats at all. I'm sorry Paula had received a threat. *shaking head*

anna s said...

Jodi, SlackinPenguin, Paula, and all of the moderates out there:

Do not give up on DeafREad. We need you guys!

I am a moderate too and a supporter of choices. I chose to introduce both CASE/ASL and spoken language for my CI child. He slides smoothly between worlds. Unfortunately some of the deaf activists snubbed their noses at me and my decision for raising my kid in an oral environment with some sign language support.

Hey SlackinPenguin, may I kindly provide some constructive feedback?

You said, "...if only deaf people would grow up!"

I am deaf. I am Deaf too and of awesome Deaf parents who are open minded. There are a lot of deaf people like you and me.

I sense your frustration and I experience that at times, but I keep chugging along and gathering support from like-minded d/Deaf people.

Paula, I am so sorry you had to experience such venom. The venomous ones are a minority in the deaf community. Hey, I can see you are a strong woman!

Jodi, do not ever cease from poking fun at Paotie. Tis'pure entertainment for us. He's such a cutie, now that he has revealed a bit about himself being a cleanly shaved preppy guy with Snoopy on his rear secretly wearing a pink bikini. Honestly I doubt he is that preptty as he claims. But, WTF.

Oh one more, I've got a really cute looking ten year old bilaterally CI'ed deaf girl at school who really enjoyed Rally Caps and says she wanted to meet Luca online.


Happy trails til the next time . . .

Anna S

SlackinPenguin said...

You're right Anna, I was painting with too broad a paintbrush.

Sorry.

I'm just sick to the back teeth of all the negativity around here, I guess I lost my cool.

Thanks for the wake up call.

Abbie said...

That kind of email represent a small minded individual. I can't believe that it went that far and especially to Paula! Regardless of you agree or disagree with someone opinion, there is no need to threaten.

How very Ku Klux Klan of the person?!

Karen Mayes said...

*smiling* I hear you, Anna S. Yeah, the moderates are stuck between two worlds. Lately the negative atmosphere and the sense of "righteousness" (speaking of an "CI, oral, TC, etc. is wrong and ASL is always right, accept it or see ya later" attitude) is more of a turn off for me lately. I really enjoy Paotie (I notice that only smart people understand him... I say it with a tongue in my cheek...) and I ain't give up on him. He has a sense of humor, the kind that the Deaf people does not understand, but that is OK. Sometimes I ask myself what I am doing with DeafRead when Deaf people are close-minded, refusing to see the BIG picture? Whatever.

Jodi, you are great! I am thinking of spending a splurge on getting my hair done... haircut and dyed plantium blonde... hmmmm....

Divided said...

Ya'all...

Yup, the deaf community are no different than the hearing community. There are lurkers that have nothing better to do except to make themselves look stupid and extremist that do nothing but yowl at everyone else.

Sad to say...I believe that alot of bloggers you see at deaf read are the X-Y generation that many of us don't bother with. There are only a few young, older, mature and well versed deaf bloggers that are worthy of reading. So I pick & choose what I enjoy reading and ignore the rest.

Different strokes for different folks! That's what Deaf Read is all about.....DR is not the deaf world as I know it so don't let your opinion about the deaf community be based on DR only. Please......we're far from it!!

Anonymous said...

yeah, Anna S and Karen....

WTF if Paotie has a bald. I love his sense of humor.

I'm addicted to a person who has sense of humor......oh well, I'll admit that I am the Peppermint Patty, a friend of Snoopy and Charlie Brown's. It's truly perfect match, I am honest to g*d.

;-)

White Ghost

Jodi Cutler Del Dottore said...

To everyone who has left such thought-provoking and supportive comments for Paula on her blog and mine, it has been greatly appreciated...you are all exceptional people and today, I was needing to hear from some exceptional people...lotta love, Jodi

Karen said...

Mikey wrote: "That person is a PUTZ!

I have a rule for cyberbullies. No tolerance."

Hey, hey, HEY! Watch your language. I'm a Putz and proud of it. :)


Paula, babe, need a milkshake??

Here's a hug instead.

After last week's round of nasty emails and dumb comments, I've learned to dismiss the toxic people outta my life. There's enough nice people to focus on instead.

Paula Rosenthal said...

Karen, I knew your shakes would come in handy. :)

Divided's comment gave me a great idea (no stealing, Jodi! LOL). How about we do a "recommended" list of blogs we read, ones that are tolerant of all sides of the issues? Then we can share it on our collective blogs and enrich other readers as well.

Jodi Cutler Del Dottore said...

That's what I love about you, Paula, ready in a split to battle back...what a woman! I've been trying to put together a list of blogs, but as you know...I suck at the bureaucratic stuff - can't even spell the word that's how allergic I am to it:) nice to have you in the house...btw, irony of ALL ironies!!! The book you sent with the beautiful message just arrived! Life is so strange sometimes...it took me three weeks to get Swiller's book and yours three days hmmm, got it.:)Timing is everything in life...THANK YOU SO MUCH, Jodi

Jay said...

Karen Mayes,

I wanted to draw attention to the comments you made was off the radar. I usually do not let things rub me too hard, but I needed to say something about this.

You said "I really enjoy Paotie (I notice that only smart people understand him... I say it with a tongue in my cheek...) and I ain't give up on him. He has a sense of humor, the kind that the Deaf people does not understand, but that is OK. Sometimes I ask myself what I am doing with DeafRead when Deaf people are close-minded, refusing to see the BIG picture? Whatever."

"... kind that Deaf people does not understand..."??? "Deaf people are close-minded..."???

Paotie and I had quite entertaining online chat the night of the DeafRead awards, that lasted into the wee hours, and he gave me some cookies, and I returned some. There were challenges of wits and all and we had fun.

Please do not stereotype people simply based on your experiences with some. Although it seems to be "small world", it is still big.

Thanks.

Jay said...

And, Paula, nobody deserves the treatment you had. I hope you will brave it though knowing that there are plenty of goodness in people, in all walks of life.

And, Jodi, thank you for reaching out!

anna s said...

Slackin Penguin- Liked ur metaphor abt the broad strokes. I find myself with that mentality at times. (:

White Ghost- Youre funny. Peppermint Patty, hmm. Bald guys can be hot, but I am for Sawyer of LOST. No one can convince me otherwise!

Karen Mayes- Go girl, go for platinum! I went fully platinum last year and it was helluva fun. My hubby could easily find me in a dark room. Heh.

anna s said...

Pauloa said: How about we do a "recommended" list of blogs we read, ones that are tolerant of all sides of the issues? Then we can share it on our collective blogs and enrich other readers as well.


I say: Do not desert DeafRead. They need us.


Oh Karen Mayes, yes.. Paotie is quick witted and extremely intelligent. Love his offbeat humor. Chuckling about the tongue in cheek remark.

Jodi Cutler Del Dottore said...

Anna S.
If that little girl sends a letter to jodi@rallycaps.net I'll make sure "Luca" answers...*smile* Jodi

Paotie said...

*laughs*

"challenges of wit?"

*LAUGHS*

Speaking of which .. Jay, you said:

"I wanted to draw attention to the comments you made was off the radar."

WTF!?!

FTS!

*laughs*

Kinda like, "Once in Vegas, Stays in Vegas."

"challenging wits?"

:o)

Paotie