As most of you are well aware of, I’ve been officially developing my new website for 7 months the last couple of months. Within that time, I’ve become a little more relaxed about promoting the content of the site and moderating the comments. Thus, when searching for phrases like “fuck mexicans” and well, “fuck mexicans,” my site comes on Google as result #5. Honestly, the essay’s title, “Tell Your Fucking Mexican Friends To Get The Fuck Out of Shenandoah” evoked enough conflict between anti-immigration advocates and pro-migrant activists like yours truly.
Before the bigotry and racism-laid comments.
Now, most of my blog posts have never needed moderations (I still get the jitters after a commenter called Soledad O’Brien an unfit mother). I’m all about civil conversation and because of the audience I draw (mainly, people who like to look up my big words on dictionary.com), I rarely ever worry about the civility and professionalism of these opinionated people.
Superficially, one might believe I let the comments on the aforementioned blog post run because I wanted to raise the numbers on my blog. I don’t believe I need that since I’m more about quality than quantity. Rather, something told me to leave those comments; let them run. Whether it’s the constant reminder that our world is not so easily eradicated of its wrongs by a click and Alt+Tab or it’s the need to let those people show their true colors (I respect that way more than those who covertly exercise their racism), I’ve let comment after comment stream through a relatively innocuous blog post.
I know most of my more sane readers probably look at this exercise as one in futility, particularly those who own blogs. Deleting some of these lewd comments is the equivalent of sanitizing one’s house. Yet, I also see the possibility for moving these comments away as a means of sweeping dirt under a rug so sullied, a visitor might wonder when the resident will ever get rid of it.
As for that blog, I probably won’t ever remove those comments. These discussions have to be had. The arguments need to be made. The person who never hears a disagreement to their comments never grows, never learns, or never really had a voice worth disagreeing with. Besides, every house is always a little dirty.
Jose, who’ll never underestimate the power of the first day back from a long vacation again …
p.s. – Trust me when I say, I’m not complicit in letting those trolls say “fuck mexicans.” To the contrary, I’d quickly hold a mirror up to their words. Read at your own risk.