Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Why Do the Buttheads Get Me Down?

I don't know what's wrong with me some days. I can read 100 nice letters or reviews or whatever and one negative one, and the negative one is always the one that sticks with me.

Stories of Strength has been a terrific experience, and every day I'm excited to see how much we've raised (more than $2100 so far, in just two weeks); which of our writers have been featured in newspapers, on the radio, or on TV; who's mentioned SoS on their blogs...

And even with this project, there had to be a butthead.

Today's butthead is over here.

(No, no, not the first poster!)

This blows my mind. Geoff is actually purposely advising people not to support this project because it might help Americans. And because he believes it's rooted in "Christian love."

You know, I hear about how people outside the US hate Americans. I will never forget hearing about two Parisian girls watching TV in a cafe with a friend of mine on the morning of 9/11, and when they heard about the terrorist attack, they actually laughed and talked about how it was "about time" someone took the Americans down a peg. I nearly threw up. It's funny that people died? About time someone killed us to prove that... what?

I mean... tell me this is crap. Tell me that most people outside the US don't take pleasure in our pain. Tell me that they haven't somehow come to the belief that because they don't like our government policies, they hate all of us and would actually advise people NOT to help in crisis situations.

Our government will help. They will not, and cannot, "fix everything" without help from the rest of us. I'm not even sure I'd want the government to do it all... what would that teach anyone? "Oh, just wait around... someone else will do something." Humans need to take care of humans. Without a sense of community, I think I'd hate this world.

I don't have any real sense of perspective on global opinion anymore. I sure know that we had numerous writers from the UK, Australia, Canada, and Germany who submitted to this anthology project and cared about this cause-- so I know not everyone shares this guy's views (thank God), but how pervasive is this?

He writes, "Why not write a compilation about how Americanocentric (to use an americanism) the Americans are."

Does he have any idea of the hypocrisy of the statement he just made? If I really believed that the rest of the world was as uncaring and hateful as this guy, it might just push me to stick to only "helping my own."

And this comment: "Looking at this, the whole thing seems to be an exercise in Christian love masquerading as something more." Nowhere did I say anything about Christ, but he got one thing right: it's about love. He can discount that in any way he likes (love sounds religious? Hippie-ish? Too optimistic?), but this love doesn't need to masquerade as anything else. It's strong enough on its own.

I'm trying to feel sorry for the guy. Really.

Down, bile, down.

Friday, November 04, 2005

Stories of Strength

Hmm. It's been a while, mostly because I've been consumed with a crazy self-imposed deadline. See, right after Hurricane Katrina struck, a bunch of writers on my message boards were feeling pretty miserable because we couldn't afford to donate much to the relief efforts. So I suggested that we write an anthology and send all the proceeds to disaster relief charities. I believe we began collecting submissions on September 1st. We released the book on November 1st. Not bad, huh?

We chose to publish through Lulu.com, and they decided to donate their profits from the book, as well. In the first three days of its release, we've raised more than $1000 for disaster relief charities!

As you can imagine, I'm kind of giddy. And as Barbra would say, "We've only just begun..." (Well, she'd sing it. But I'm no Barbra.)

Point is, I know I specifically said I don't want to have my promotional hat on in this blog, but this is different. This one's not for me. Please, take a look at www.storiesofstrength.com and consider ordering copies for yourself or as gifts. My goal is to raise at least $100,000 for disaster relief charities. Watch that site to check on our progress!

I don't know what this means yet, but Mac and Dawno are trying to edumacate me about Technorati tags, so here's my first.