Every once in a while at work, we have a big email storm. It usually begins with someone sending out an email to a large, open access distribution list about a topic no one cares about.
Then the ‘Reply to All’s begin.
For those of you who aren’t email experts, there’s an oft overlooked button that gets terribly overused in Corporate America, and that’s the “Reply to All” button. It is the magic button that sends your response to everyone who the message was sent to, not just the sender.
So here’s how the storm starts: One person hits “Reply to All” and says “take me off this mailer”. Then someone else replies to all and says, “yeah, me too. I hate spam and I don’t know <insert sender here>”. Then someone replies to all telling them to stop replying to all. Then someone else replies to all saying they want to be taken off, and how rude it is that everyone is replying to all. Then someone replies to all (putting all the names into the BCC field, as if that’s going to stop it) and says to stop replying to all. Then someone else replies to all, changing the subject line and in ALL CAPS writes, “STOP REPLYING TO ALL” (even though that’s what he just barely did, hypocrite).
Like a bad program stuck in an infinite loop, the humans just keep going around and around, bashing their own head against the brick wall, then complaining about how much it hurts. They never stop replying to all, perpetuating their own problem. Sadly, the only way these email threads ever get stopped is when an administrator essentially pulls the plug on the email server.
This is exactly how the Prop 8 Problem is being perpetuated.
NEWS FLASH: The votes are in, the proposition passed, and there isn’t anything either side can do to change that fact.
I guess everyone thinks they’re going to feel better about it if they just keep ‘replying to all’ and rehashing it. Is it about love? Is it about rights? Is it about religion? Blah blah blah… one impassioned plea after another. Well, guess what, friends. Talking about this isn’t going to help you feel better about it.
The dialogue is hitting a fever pitch. It’s past dialogue, now. It’s become an all-out values war with both sides guilty of embarrassing propagandist, mind-bending tactics that would make Hitler, Stalin, and Mussolini proud.
The level of hatred, vitriol, and illegal acts are becoming absurd. My church has been targeted specifically, with church buildings being vandalized and anthrax threats being sent by mail. I’m not terribly mad about this, though. We are a strong, lively institution and we will be OK. What I am mad-as-hell about is that individuals are now being targeted; your brothers, sisters, uncles, aunts, mothers and fathers are being e-lynched for believing what they believe and speaking out in an open society.
I’m not here to pass judgment on homosexuality, but I am going to pass judgment on all of the hateful behavior and speech, online and in person, that has ensued since the passage of Prop 8. It is wrong and must stop if our democracy to continue to be the hope of the world.
Had the proposition failed and if the “Yes” groups were out picketing the gay bars, blacklisting their homosexual friends and boycotting their businesses, the courts would be full of hate crimes cases. So is it a hate crime to be anti-hetero or hetero-phobic? This street must go both ways.
I don’t care whether you supported Prop 8 or were against it, it’s time to move ahead. The homosexual community has been dealt a very large blow in its quest for legal parity with heterosexual couples, but they have every right now to continue to petition our government for a “redress of their grievances.” (Ever heard that line before, if not you seriously need a US Gov’t class!) And unless the homosexual community is interested in a more ardent, galvanized counter movement, they’d be well advised to dummy up and do just that: start planning the next move rather than wasting their time, energy and resources picketing churches, individuals, and businesses who supported this latest measure.
So there you have it… my reply to all. 🙂