Insanitybytes22 and I have been having a debate. She is an unrelenting critic of the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC), and I have argued that that is not appropriate. What is the problem with what insanitybytes22 is doing? insanitybytes22 means well, but her criticism condemns without offering a solution. This same problem is pervasive in the news media, and insanitybytes22’S consumption of the news media is probably what drives her criticism.
We soft pedal the problem of mean spirited and abusive news media criticism by calling it crusading journalism. However, if we take the time to observe that muckraking is a form of crusading journalism, that puts the matter into a more accurate perspective.
What is the primary incentive for the widespread practice of muckraking in today’s news media? Like most of the mass media, the news media is exists to attract an audience for advertisers. Muck provides cheap entertainment. Lots of people find delving into the alleged sins of others, especially their sexual sins, quite entertaining. Unfortunately, there is nothing new about that. What is new is that most of us have not been properly taught to recognize and disdain muckraking.
To her credit, insanitybytes22 provides little, if any, salacious content on her websites. Instead, she demands that the SBC do something for the sake of the victims of sexual abuse. What? That is not exactly clear.
“Do something” is not exactly the way insanitybytes22 states her demand for action, but “do something” is a favor phrase for activists and the crusading news media.
- Gun violence? Do something.
- Poverty? Do something.
- COVID-19? Do something.
- Genocide? Do something.
- Global warming? Do something.
- Infant formula? Do something.
- Inflation? Do something.
- And so forth? Do something.
“Do something” is the emotional, thoughtless response of a news media that does not want its audience to think. “Do something” is the way the news media convinces its audience to believe they are being virtuous when in fact they are just viewing an unending stream of slanderous and libelous innuendo. “Do something” is just the emotional cover that the crony capitalists who own the news media give their bought politicians. It takes a lot of idiotic emotion to give politicians an excuse to spend trillions of taxpayer dollars on worthless government programs and to viciously abuse the rights of their political opposition.
When “Do something” is so utterly stupid, why do we believe crusading journalists? We believe because that is how we have been taught to participate in politics. Instead of learning how our political system is supposed to work so we can control the politicians we elect, we have allowed the politicians we elect to run our education system, and THOSE SAME POLITICIANS HAVE TOLD US HOW THEY WANT TO BE CONTROLED.
Given the criticism by myself and others, insanitybytes22 has tried to explain herself (see The First Sin?). Unfortunately, she doesn’t yet understand why some of us find her criticism of the SBC and various Conservative Christians so frustrating. Perhaps that is because we have not explained ourselves well. So, here is the reason. “Do something” is not constructive criticism. What is the SBC supposed to do? How will we know when the SBC is properly responding to those complaining of sexual abuse? If we don’t have measurable criteria, how will we know when the SBC is doing enough?
Note that SBC has not ignored the problem of sexual abuse.
Here is the SBC’s web page on sexual abuse.
With respect to accusations of sexual abuse, has the SBC behaved well? No, but has any of the institutions within our society — including the news organs that make up the corporate mass media? Nope. Consider this extract from the Executive Summary of that report that the news media and Insanitybytes22 are so concerned about.
Our investigation revealed that, for many years, a few senior EC leaders, along with outside counsel, largely controlled the EC’s response to these reports of abuse. They closely guarded information about abuse allegations and lawsuits, which were not shared with EC Trustees, and were singularly focused on avoiding liability for the SBC to the exclusion of other considerations. In service of this goal, survivors and others who reported abuse were ignored, disbelieved, or met with the constant refrain that the SBC could take no action due to its polity regarding church autonomy – even if it meant that convicted molesters continued in ministry with no notice or warning to their current church or congregation.Click here for Guidepost Full Report
Please observe that what those EC leaders did was at first the conventional response.
However, the SBC helped produce the Guidepost Report, Sexual Abuse Task Force Report Resources. Moreover, the SBC authorized the release of a list of alleged abusers compiled by a former employee of the SBC Executive Committee. Was releasing that list fair to the alleged abusers? I don’t know, but both the accused and the accusers have the right to a fair hearing and justice.
See also => Guidepost.
The Guidepost report came at the request of task force created by the SBC, Sexual Abuse Task Force. The SBC may be a slow learner, but they now appear to be trying to deal appropriately with a problem that seems all too common.
So, what is the lesson here? When we criticize someone, we need to try to make our criticism worth more than it hurts to those we criticize. Consider how business people look at criticism.
What is constructive criticism?
Constructive criticism is a type of critique that can be applied to someone’s behavior to make meaningful, positive changes. Those in supervisory positions should always aim to provide actionable criticism, and when you receive it you should do your best to apply what you learn.from => https://www.indeed.com/career-advice/career-development/how-to-take-constructive-criticism
As citizens of a free country, we have supervisory authority over our government and many of this nation’s institutions. Therefore, when we criticize those who lead us, we should provide actionable criticism, and when we receive criticism we should look for lessons we can apply.