Today, marks my fourth blogiversary, just one month and two days after Bruce set up this blog.
To honor that, I quote words the great Albert Camus wrote just after World War II, words that I used to enter the blogosphere four years ago today:
Something in us has been destroyed by the spectacle of the years just past. And this something is the eternal confidence of man, which has always made him believe that one could draw human reactions from another man by speaking to him in the language of humanity. We have seen lying, debasing, killing, deportations, torture, and each time it was not possible to persuade those who were doing it not to do it, because they were so sure of themselves and because one cannot persuade an abstraction, that is to say, the representative of an ideology.
The long conversation of mankind has just ended. And, of course, a man whom one cannot persuade is a man who frightens us….
We live in terror because persuasion is no longer possible, because man has been delivered entirely to history and because he can no longer turn to that part of himself, as true as the historical part, which he discovers in front of the beauty of the world and of human faces…
The Century of Fear from “Combat,” November 1946 (my translation).
After four years blogging, these words have become ever more poignant, given the amount of hate-mail I have received and the number of hate comments this blog has generated. It seems that some on the gay left don’t want to be persuaded by their conservative peers, no, not persuaded to become conservative, but persuaded that we are not self-loathing oxymorons. They refuse to believe we reached our conclusions through extended thought about the role of government in civil society and with careful consideration for the circumstances of the situation at hand.
That we have failed to persuaded them of the sincerity of our views suggests a certain hardness on their part. Alas, we do not always draw human reactions from our critics.
Even though Camus wrote those words before many of those critics were born, he did understand the nature of their hate. Some of them hate, not because of what we say (their regular misrepresentation and ignorance of our ideas shows that), but because of what they feel. They seem to have cut themselves off from a certain part of themselves, the part that finds humanity in our differences.
All that said, if “suffering” their hatred is the price one has to pay for the success I have enjoyed in this endeavor, then it has been well worth it. As I experienced in St. Paul last month and here Saturday night, this blog has helped me meet other like-minded individuals and become a forum for gay people who had not previously had a voice in the media. And it has helped me find opportunities I might otherwise have missed.
So, Bruce, thanks once again for inviting me to join you in this project that has succeeded beyond your wildest expectations. And readers, thank you for taking the time to read my posts and consider my ideas. That means more to me than you can possible imagine.