My Promise to You (Well, Me, Actually…But I hope You Benefit, Too)

Posted: April 1, 2011 by benjiefrank in Uncategorized

Dale Carnegie's Classic...A Must Read for Everybody!

For years, I have been watching assorted news shows, listening to talk radio, and engaging in political/philosophical/theoretical debates and discussions with my friends and family members.  However, I have always been struck by how quickly these discussions can turn ugly, where people who genuinely love and respect one another walk away from exchanges with true disdain for one another.

Then, I read the Carnegie Classic, “How to Win Friends and Influence People.”  The story he relates about Benjamin Franklin spoke so deeply to me that I decided to start a blog where my name-sake would be proud.  The crux of the Franklin story is that, as a young man, Ben was abrasive and disrespectful of people with whom he had philosophical disagreements.  However, he soon realized that people were avoiding him, and so he swore to ‘never speak ill of another human again.’  He stayed true to that promise and became on of the greatest statesmen the world has ever known.  I wanted that, and wanted a blog to my forum.

I started this blog and started talking to my conservative friends.  I then opened a twitter account and started following people, chiming in whenever a story or link spoke to me.  However, I soon found myself denigrating people I disagreed with and being hateful in thought and response.  I am a failure!

I have always been able to accept my shortcomings, and have also been quick to grow from my mistakes;  but this really hurt me.  I really want to have honest, yet respectful conversations with people of all stripes–yet I am not sure if I have the strength or willpower to keep it above the belt.  This made me step away from this blog for several days (weeks?).  To quote the sappy, hippie bumper sticker, I need to be the change I wish to see in the world.

Therefore, this is my promise to myself, and to anyone who honors me with a few seconds of attention.  I promise to strive to be statesmanlike in my writing, and I promise to take my time when responding to yours.  There are plenty of people on both sides of the political spectrum who will toss grenades across the fence at one another.  If I do the same, I add nothing to the discourse.  I liken this effort to the truly great comedians who choose to work harder and develop their craft as family friendly art rather than take the easy, dirty, cheap f-bomb laden joke re-hash that dominates the scene.

I am not saying that I am better than the quick-witted, sharp-tongued writers/talkers out there.  I am saying that I want to work harder than I have been.  I want to have honest, open discussions where contributors leave  conversations feeling better about the world than when they entered them.  If you want the same, then I respectfully ask you to stay tuned and sharpen your pens (limber up your typing fingers…) If you think I’m a weak-spined sissy, then fu….wait…LOL…then I respectfully ask that you try–and we will see what happens.

Thanks so much to all who take the time to read this.  Let’s start asking each other some tough questions, shall we?

  1. israelsright says:

    I have found to sharpen your level of patience all you need to do is to debate those on youtube. At first you will be a rabid bulldog, but overtime, facts and confidence prevail. Thus leaving all the insulting in the hands of the either less-informed or to the non-informed. Nice article, by the way.

    • benjiefrank says:

      Israel, you are too, too funny dude! Thanks for the helpful advice, though. BTW, I do think your blogs are hitting on all cylinders, so keep up the great work.

      Also, I am considering starting a discussion thread on the Left’s arbitrary view of money, and how that actually hurts their case in the long run. Stay tuned, cuz I will be referencing a Krugman article. FUN FUN!


  2. israelsright says:

    I will stay tuned for that

  3. benjiefrank says:

    The 2 or 3 of you who actually do me the honor of reading my infrequent posts may (or may not) have seen my catty response to this tweet from the political ticker: However, upon review, you will notice that I was clearly poking fun rather than lodging a researched and formal response. Please give me a little leeway here, because I really want to be able to joke AND have serious discussions. Thanks in advance, and check me out on twitter, too!

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