Wednesday, April 30, 2014

We are not ashamed!

The apostle Paul, known for his fiery personality, stated boldly in his letter to the Romans: “I am not ashamed of the gospel...”

In another letter he describes all the abuse and torture that came about as a result of this bold stand. But he stood by it.

In today's culture, we're seeing a segment of society that I can only label as cowardly. They love to shoot off their mouths, but they'll only do it only under a cloak of anonymity. This is especially true on media web sites, where newspapers and television stations not only report the news of the day, but also invite comments from readers. The only thing is, the readers do not have to identify themselves.

I find this offensive on two counts. I don't think the media should allow it unless there are names and addresses. They insist on that if you send a letter to the editor. Why not apply the same rules if you wish to comment on line?

And, it's only a coward who fires away at targets while refusing to disclose identity.

I'm bringing this up because members of the HFP Board of Directors were dismayed at comments on the Grand Haven Tribune website in response to a story about our prisoner art sale. Grumbled one reader: “Doug Tjapkes has more pro-felon initiatives than Carter has liver pills.” And when Matthew wrote a response to the varied negative comments, another reader allowed that he sounded like “one of those prison groupies.”

When I was in the media business I had a simple policy regarding unsigned letters and anonymous telephone calls: If there was no signature I refused to read the letter, and if the caller refused to give a name I disconnected. Dialog is fair only when both sides are out in the open.

The cowards are welcome to keep right on firing their darts anonymously.

As for Matt and me and the HFP board: We are not ashamed!

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