Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Trenches Too Deep (Part One)

A few months ago, my mother's friend told me that he visits Lefty's Last Cry. Knowing full well that he is very conservative, I couldn't help but wonder why. He said, quite plainly, he enjoyed reading it. I was pleased to find people with differing opinions coming onto our blog and occasionally joining in the discussion.

For the longest time, I was frustrated by our conservative commenters. I was worried that they intimidated our younger, newer writers and generally didn't add to the level of discourse. I banned anonymous commenting on the site to force people to man up to their words. This fear never really manifested itself, and I'm glad to say that our loyal fans have done a great job at holding the fort in the comment wars.

My fears amounted to a standard human reaction of feeling threatened by insurgents when group cohesion and enthusiasm is particularly valuable. At some point, I decided to re-open the anonymous comments. On a personal level, I decided to start paying regular visits to Foxnews.com and a variety of other conservative sites. My mother's friend had reminded me that my trench was a bit too deep.

This was about more than blogging. It was about my political identity.

I have been surrounded by conservatism for most of my life. I spent my youngest years in San Diego, CA with an extended family that jumped for joy for Bush II. I spent the majority of my formative years in Oak Harbor, Washington, a small military town in Western Washington about which wikipedia had the following to say. [On the Naval Air Station]

And now, like many of you, I attend the University of Notre Dame. From the moment I walked on this campus freshman year, I've had a chip on my shoulder. One of my best friends, Ian, remembers his first impression of me from the first week of school:

[Paraphrased] Henry was that loud kid that was arguing against 6 other freshmen in the dining hall about why milk isn't necessary and how the propaganda promulgated by the dairy industry in the United States had brainwashed American children with "Got Milk."

MORE: The rise from the trenches and why the internet isn't making us more polarized. 
To read part two...


Anonymous said...

I can't wait for part two! ;)

templariidvm said...

Keep it up guys! I happen to be that conservative from Oak Harbor! Get your ideas out there and keep talking about them. By discussing the issues intelligently and without rancor, we can come to solutions. Often, the solutions were not imagined by "either side" before the discussion.

Once again, keep it up!

Colleen Lowry said...

I love people that rise from the ashes. I think you have done that wonderfully Henry.

But I still love milk.