Oh pot, is the kettle truly black?
Name-callers strike again: Sandeen @PHB maligns Chicago Cardinal Frances George as “homophobe” for defending marriage: http://bit.ly/hkLXJW
If one wants to be an advocate against derogatory name-calling, one of the first things one should do is to not to engage in derogatory name-calling yourself. If one has engaged in derogatory name-calling in the past, but now one finds derogatory name-calling inappropriate, then one owns up to one’s past name-calling and apologizes for it, and then repents — repenting in the sense of intending not to engage in the bad behavior again, and then engaging in corrective actions (planning, developing systematic changes, etc.) to not repeat the bad behavior.
If one engages in name-calling, and then accuses another of name calling, one’s accusation that another has engaged in name-calling rings insincere, and one becomes subject to the accusation of hypocrisy.
Yesterday, an insincere declaiming of name-calling was made by Peter LaBarbera — he declaims me for calling Cardinal Frances George as a “homophobe.”
Let me begin by explaining how Twitterfeed works. Twitterfeed is a program for automatically posting links for new line items on an RSS feed to one’s own twitter account.
So here at Pam’s House Blend, every blog post that is found on the front page is on at least two RSS feeds — one of the RSS feeds would be for the individual author of a blog post, and a the other RSS feed would be the one for all PHB front page posts. I set up my Twitterfeed account to automatically post article links from the PHB “front pagers” at Pam’s House Blend to my Autumn_Sandeen twitter account, as well as article links from author Helen Boyd’s blog en/gender.
So, Peter LaBarbera tweeted on an article, written by Pam Spaulding, that he saw posted to my twitter account. I didn’t write the article, and I didn’t call Cardinal George a “homophobe,” but LaBarbera — apparently not understanding how technology works regarding RSS feeds and Twitterfeed — indicated that I called Cardinal George a “homophobe.” So, Peter LaBarbera picked the wrong target for his tweet to begin with.
But, even if LaBarbera picked the right target for the charge of name-calling, it would have been the pot calling the kettle black. I’ve documented LaBarbera’s use of name-calling against transgender people in Peter LaBarbera And His Christian Faith; Not Much Christianity Found In His Behavior and Peter LaBarbera’s Un-Christian Christianity Shines Through Again. Heck, Pam has her “endorsements” from Peter LaBarbera up on the left side of our homepage, where LaBarbera stated Pam is a “vicious anti-Christian lesbian activist,” and a “blog-stremist.”
We have free speech in the United States; we have the first amendment right to name-call others we disagree with. This isn’t a question about if one, in one’s own forums, is allowed to engage in name-calling. People have a protected right to engage in name-calling.
But that said, if one uses his, her, or hir free speech to decry name-calling, but one engages in that behavior oneself, then one should reasonably expect to be identified as engaging in hypocrisy.
And that’s what one can say about Peter LaBarbera in this case: he is engaging in hypocrisy; he is the pot calling the kettle black.
…And one more thing. At least if Peter LaBarbera is going to claim someone is engaging in name-calling, at least hit the right target of who actually is engaging in name-calling. There is a technology 101 thing going on here that LaBarbera just doesn’t seem to understand.
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