Thankfully, it doesn’t happen often, but occasionally I receive some pretty vile comments. There are a few posts that receive more than average, but the post that grosses the most hateful comments is PETA and Pit Bulls.
When I receive comments of dissent – expressing an opposing viewpoint – I usually let them through and strive to respond to them. Discussions and disagreements are A-OK because it’s how we exchange ideas and develop deeper connections. Slander, insults, name-calling, and hate… those aren’t OK, and I mark all those as spam so that the person’s email address is forever blocked.
That was working well until recently when, dangit, a commenter outsmarted me by using a fake address.
On the PETA post, in quick succession:
- Pit bulls are not animals, they are monsters.
- Humane euthanization of these dogs would make our children safe from these increasing attacks.
- You just inspired me to donate to PETA! Thanks!
Normally, I huff a little, mark them as spam, then move on. There are just some wackos out there who, for whatever reason, get so fired up about something that a discussion, even with all the facts laid out, can’t pry their mind open even an inch. Maybe I was feeling extra grumpy that day, but those comments lodged in my head. Really, it just breaks my heart. My dogs and your dogs aren’t monsters. They’re loves.
(Nothing’s wrong with Cooper’s face… just glare from the reading lamp…)
This is why we advocate on behalf of our dogs, because there are closed-minded folks spreading fear. I truly believe the tides are turning. Repeals of BSL are happening faster than new laws being enacted. Pit bulls are getting so much more positive press, the positive press they deserve, thanks to mainstream pubs like the Huffington Post.
But comments like those remind us that we all need to advocate for our dogs. We must be a voice for pit bulls because there are people who still have hateful, misinformed ideas about our dogs, and – unfortunately – our pups can’t speak for themselves. (If Emmett could, though, I’m pretty sure he’d say something like, “Wait. What? But I love you! Hey, do you have any snacks?”)
So, yeah. I’ll continue to spam or delete vitriolic comments. I’ll approve and respond to the ones that seem somewhat open to discussion. And I’ll continue to write about how wonderful ALL our dogs are. Because all dogs are wonderful and deserve to be loved, cared for, and treated respectfully (just as people do, too…).
Those of you who blog, how do you handle negative comments? Those of you who have been faced with negative comments in person, how do you respond?
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