Somebody named “Betsy” has written a comment on the page called “Bucket Brigade” and I want to address her concerns with a page all to itself, not because I especially want to target “Betsy,” but because the sentiments she expresses seem to represent a very common misunderstanding that people have.
Here’s what she said:
I don’t know if it’s what you were going for but this comes of as sounding like an ultimatum. You give detailed instructions on what Nicole is to do with her blog and FB pages, who should be able to view her content and which pages she can keep as is. It sounds as if you are trying to silence her and it is offensive. If you were only trying to make the point that you wouldn’t be writing this blog if she didn’t put all of the details out there for you to see, I think that point was somewhat lost among what seems to be a list of demands.
Nicole Has every right to promote half ass homesteading on a pallet to her heart’s content. She shouldn’t expect not to be called out on it but no one should make efforts silence her.
I absolutely agree with Betsy. Nicole and Joe Naugler have every right to publicly promote any stupid thing they want for as long as they want and as loudly as they want. I would defend their right to do so with my life, frankly. A world without free speech is not one where I wish to live.
I did not “give detailed instructions on what Nicole is to do” with anything.
What I did do was explain how Nicole could get me to hush. She has been screaming at the top of her lungs that she just wants everyone to “leave her alone.” I’m explaining how she can get that to happen.
She doesn’t have to take my advice. She can totally ignore me. She can right on bellyaching and talking about how she’s being “stalked” and how unfair Facebook is because bias (or something), and that’s her absolute right.
Betsy says that Nicole “shouldn’t expect not to be called out on it” (writing about half-assed nonexistent “homesteading”), and I agree. Right now, right here, I am doing the calling out.
Furthermore, I am providing a place where people like Betsy can come and say that they don’t like what I’m saying, which is more than Nicole does. Apart from what I call “love letters” (absolute hate mail), I have approved every single comment made here, whether the person agrees with me or not. I have censored nothing at all (“you are an idiot” excepted – update: I also censored one of the minor Naugler children, and I don’t allow discussions about her grooming business). I don’t have to do that. I could make this whole blog comment-free in a matter of seconds. And then if Betsy didn’t like what I said, she would have to go get her own blog and bitch about it.
This is how free speech works, folks.
Nicole gets to talk. And I get to talk. And if I permit it on this site (which I own), Betsy gets to talk. Or, if I choose (as Nicole does) not to allow contrary views here, Betsy can trot over to some freebie blog site or Facebook and do all the talking she wants. None of this is “stalking.” It is not “harassment.” It is not even “mean.” It is simply free speech in action in a free and open society.
Consider this sort of story, of which there are too many lately. Guy makes a sign saying that religion is a fairy tale and is threatened with arrest. That’s in Britain.
It gets even worse in Islamic nations where criticism of Islam can get you a death sentence. And even in America, accusations of so-called Islamophobia are often flung about when anyone criticizes Islam at all.
The idea of free speech is a hallmark of American freedom. It’s a necessity for a free and open society. Blogging is a way for average people to have a voice. They can write about anything they like, as often as they like, for no money if they like.
But free speech doesn’t guarantee you the right to be heard. You can talk all you wish (or write all you wish) and I can refuse to listen or read.
It also doesn’t guarantee that you won’t be criticized. That applies to Nicole just as it applies to me.
And I will repeat what I said before. If Nicole wants everyone to “leave her alone,” then she is going to have to take down that stupid “homesteading” blog that is, yes, Betsy, half-assed. If she doesn’t want to do that, then she is going to have to pull up her big girl pants and deal with the criticism.