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JewishJournal.com

November 27, 2011

Blogging Needs Decency and Regulations

http://www.jewishjournal.com/blog/item/blogging_needs_decency_and_regulations_20111127/

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It has been an interesting week in the blogosphere.  I am reeling from what has been written both on my blog and on Twitter.  The level of hate and bad behavior that has been caused is quite remarkable.  I never would have imagined that I would be faced with such hate.

As a Jewish writer, who writes on a Jewish based website, I have been personally attacked many times.  Religion is a dangerous thing to write about as people are committed to their convictions.  I am one who believes in faith, and so it is difficult for me when my beliefs are questioned.

In times of trouble I lean on faith. In 45 years of a full and blessed life, God has not asked me to deal with anything I could not manage. I have a relationship with God and he guides me through the challenges of life. Well not guide really, but gently pushes me along the path.

It’s usually the right path, but there have been times in my life when I have gone the wrong way and he still pushed me, which is comforting because even though I knew I may be making a mistake, he is with me, watching my back, and there to catch me should I fall, and I have fallen.

Writing Keeping the Faith is something I enjoy and am very proud of. It is my take on the world, and sharing my opinions has been fun, scary, enlightening, educational, and at the end of the day, my truth.  My child will be able to look back at these posts and really know me.

I love my child more than I can explain, or even understand.  My entire heart is wrapped around this remarkable human being.  He is what makes my soul sing.  I am able to see God because of him, and I am sure that is how most loving and caring mothers think about their children.

I always wanted to be a mother. It was my childhood dream and there was a time in my life when I thought it would never happen for me.  I was the victim of a violent crime and I truly thought my life would not include motherhood.  That I am able to be a mother is a miracle.

I have survived many things in my life and am stronger and wiser because of the challenges God has asked me to overcome.  I never would have thought in a million years that the one thing that might break my spirit would be a bunch of mean spirited and hate hurling women on the Internet.

Keeping it Real is a blog about television.  It’s a fun, snarky, sarcastic and entertaining look at a medium that I love.  TV is fun to watch, and fun to write about, especially reality television. This week however, it stopped being fun and came dark, nasty, scary and dangerous.

I wrote an expose of sorts on a woman that I feel is crossing the line in terms of reality television blogging.  She is mean and hurtful and there are many, many documented cases of her attacking and hurting people in a way that they have not been able to recover from.  I had enough.

Maybe it’s because I work at a faith based publication, or maybe because I reference faith and God, but people came to me for help.  I listened and tried to be supportive as a decent human being, but they needed more from me.  These people needed someone to be their voice.

It was with a little hesitation, but belief in doing the right thing, that I wrote the blog.  I wanted to help.  This is not about a few crazy women with too much time on their hands.  This is a network of hate that needs to be stopped.  Why are there no rules and regulations for us?

How is it that a woman writing in her basement can randomly select lives to ruin, and have no accountability?  My blogs were not intended to hurt, but to help.  When given the choice to stand up for the right thing, or be quiet, I chose the only option if I wanted to be true to my faith.

The Talmud tells us “Whoever saves one life saves the world.”  If I did not try to help women who reached out, how could I explain to God that I turned a blind eye?  We also say, “If I am not for myself who will be for me? Yet, if I am for myself only, what am I? And if not now, when?

I am a blogger.  This is my job and so I want to stand up for myself and my work, in addition to needing to stand up for those who can’t do it for themselves, and it must be now because now is when things are bad.  This is my life that is being attacked.  My work, my family, my livelihood.

My child has done nothing, yet he is being attacked.  I have no criminal record, yet it being said that I do.  My employer has supported my voice being heard, and they are being attacked for my blog.  It’s not okay with me, and while I cannot fight battles for eveyone, I can fight my own.

I am not going to go away or shut up when it comes to these women, and until they are held accountable for ruining the reputation of what I do for a living, and what other women do for work and for fun, I am not going to be quiet.  Eventually somebody who can help will listen.

I panicked for a minute, but that has passed.  I’m not afraid of bullies, threats, or lawsuits.  I am afraid of a world where people can hide behind a computer screen and attack innocent people, and nobody helps the victims.  If I can help, just a little, for just one person, I will.

It’s time for decency.  We all have opinions and should be able to share them without fear.  I take responsibility for my part and apologize for any harm I have caused.  I imagine this will get worse before it gets better, but know that I am in it now and my goal remains the same.  Peace.

This is a blog about television and so it’s odd that I would be writing about faith, but I did not know how to address the situation without bringing faith into it as that is how I deal with struggles in my life.  It’s just television and for it to get this ugly is shocking and wrong on a lot of levels.

I am here to listen and if it means I am to be advocate, then I will do the best I can because there must be rules, regulations and repercussions.  At the end of the day this is upsetting, exhausting and unfortunate, but it is happening and so I keeping the faith so I can keep it real.

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