Thursday, July 28, 2016

I Got A Response From @Montel_Williams

Every once in a while I get a little surprise on social media as much of the content I produce is simply caste into the vacuum to never be heard from again. Bear in mind that this is primarily due to my lack of correspondence through these sites. I really need to work on that. But, sometimes, someone catches one of my posts and comments, likes, retweets, or responds to what I wrote. Sometimes they agree and other times there is not a grain of agreement to be found.

The truly surprising part is when I recognize the name with these likes, shares, and responses. Most of the time these come from friends or family while other times they come from people whom I have never met before like back in June when Montel Williams responded to my post following the massacre in Orlando. The response was simple but addressed the core of what I was addressing in my blog. Frankly, I was just surprised that he took the time to respond which does say a lot about how he chooses to engage with people as a whole.

Bear in mind that I fervently disagree with many of the comments and confrontations that can be found when browsing through his account but he takes the time to listen and respond. Additionally, he takes the time to share his opinions and I have to respect someone who is willing to be vocal about what they believe whether or not I agree with them. However, there are many people with whom I disagree, many friends and family in fact, but that doesn’t mean that I don’t respect their opinion. Although some opinions are so far out there that I can’t respect them. But there are also times when we find a common ground like I did with Mr. Williams in our brief exchange over Twitter.

And this is the main point that I want to drive home with this post. There have been numerous people that have tested my patience and temperament through various social media sites in recent years and especially in recent weeks. And, honestly, I am sure that I have done the same through many of the things that I have posted. However, I have also invited many people to have a dialogue knowing full well that we will probably never come to an agreement on many topics. I don’t unfriend or unfollow people when I disagree with them and I don’t leave visceral comments to posts. I try to engage with them outside of the public forum.

We have to remember that we all possess different views colored by a diverse collection of life experiences. Many times there will not be any common ground to be found but, every once in a while, we find something in common… sometimes it is how similar events in our lives have taken us in drastically different directions while other times it is the surprise when we find ourselves agreeing on a topic despite our differences. This is a time for discussion not divisiveness but also a time when we cannot be afraid to share our views and opinions.

So, when you read much of what I write remember that I am open to discussing just about anything. You may not like what I have to say and I may not like what you have to say but that doesn’t mean that we can’t talk and it doesn’t mean that we will disagree on everything (although that is a possibility). How does that sound Mr. Williams?