Well, it’s been interesting in my neck of the woods, I must say.
Even Picard is speechless.
I admit it.
I wrote a controversial post.
What the hell was I thinking?
I wrote a post that makes the ADN vs. BSN debate look like a high five.
And I did it without benefit of asbestos underwear.
Don’t make the same mistake.
Here are a few pointers so that if you choose to take on a controversial topic, you will be better prepared than I was.
- In polite society one does not discuss politics, religion or sex. Oh, you might be able to get away with one of those. Two is rocking the boat. Three causes a big KABOOM! I took on all three! No, I’m not brave, just stupid. Because…
- No matter how good you think you write, and I don’t care if you think you’re the next Jane Austen, you cannot phrase the post in such a way as to address the topic and avoid the KABOOM! Because…
- Everyone projects their own world view and feelings on what they read. This is not a bad thing, it’s reality.
Which brings me to the next point:
- Know your limits! If you are sensitive or “thin-skinned”, think twice before you write. Because….
- It will get personal. Names of animals will be invoked. Your integrity will be questioned. Your favorite Nascar driver will be insulted. Okay, not the last one, but you get my point.
- If you can’t take the heat, don’t turn on the stove, you will get burned. I not only turned the stove on, I put it on “broil”. Hence the need for asbestos underwear. No blog post, no topic is worth coming to tears over (or whatever the equivalent would be for a guy).
So, you’ve decided you can take the heat, you’ve lit the match and you are going to hit “submit”.
- State your case clearly and unambiguously. Don’t try to be clever. Don’t try to be artistic. If you aren’t clear about exactly what you are saying, it is more likely to be misunderstood/misinterpreted/confusing.
- If you can provide links to sources that will help people understand the issue, do so. This was a great suggestion I received from one of my readers (thanks, Kim!)
- Decide how you want to respond to comments. I usually do it by email, but when I found myself addressing the same issues over and over, I added a prologue to the post.
- Your post may lead to other bloggers responding on their own blog. Link to these at the bottom of your post as you become aware of them. Not all opinions can fit in a single comment. They may disagree with you, but those posts are part of the conversation and links are the life-blood of the blogosphere.
I survived my foray into controversy, and despite a brief period of “why the hell do I bother to blog at all” and a good pity-party with a bottle of Bud Light (with Lime), I am ready to blog on.
Only I think I’ll leave the heavy stuff to the bloggers who do it best.
I will, however, take on all comers over anything Nascar.
For that, I really do have asbestos underwear!