This post has been deleted.
Why? Because partisan political appeals essentially filter this blog’s audience by political affiliation, and I want my audience to remain politically diverse. I don’t want to post that kind of content.
UPDATE (2/8/2017): A few people have commented that I shouldn’t have deleted it, assuming I’ve been “bullied” into it. For those interested, I explained my reasons in a comment below. Also, if you really want to read it, it is archived here on the Internet Wayback Machine.
I’ll explain why I deleted it. There are four reasons.
Don’t assume I was bullied, that’s not what happened. I got about eight emails. Only two of them I would describe as “hate mail”. I have received a lot more hate mail for other topics. I generally just ignore hate mail because there’s nothing to talk about with crazy shouting people.
It was a few email exchanges with some thoughtful people who took exception to the post. They were good about explaining why. They didn’t call me names.
Here’s why I deleted it:
1) It was mean in a way I don’t want my writing to be. Expressing my opinion wasn’t what was mean. It was something more specific: my post presumed any thinking person already agrees with my views on Trump. Basically I implied that any Trump supporters who read this blog might as well piss off because obviously I think they’re dummies or monsters. I didn’t intend to send that message but I’m not sure how else I expected them to hear it. I don’t want to filter my readers by their political beliefs, and this post was effectively doing that.
2) There was surprisingly little positive support for it. I got a few nice comments and two “Good piece, thanks for writing that” emails. Normally I get dozens of each, regardless of the topic. There was a conspicuous silence among my left-leaning audience and that surprised me a lot more than the pushback did. Honestly I was worried the post would go viral, and I’d have to contend with armies of angry people from elsewhere on the internet. But it was a dud. It seems obvious that even the readers who share my political sensibilities do not want to read about political activism when they visit Raptitude. This is just a basic “Why does my audience come here?” consideration.
3) Having audience members from far-off areas of the political spectrum is very valuable. If they are subscribers, that means we’ve found some common ground on some views, if not political ones. It is so damn difficult to get different parts of the spectrum to talk to each other, and we were, but many are no longer listening because I was tactless in my approach. I have always emphasized the importance of preserving the receptiveness of the audience when you’re trying to persuade people of anything. I burned that connection off to a certain segment, though, to make an ephemeral point about politics that others are already making anyway.
4) I don’t want the contributions I make on this site to be in the realm of partisan politics. That’s clear to me now if it wasn’t before. There’s no shortage of thoughtful pieces on current politics, written by people with much more insight on those topics, and people know where to find them. I have much more to offer on other parts of the “tree”, and as I said in the post I think it accomplishes more in the long run.
I agree with your basic sentiments about “speaking up”. I speak up all the time — that’s what this blog is, that’s my full time job, and what I say to the world through this platform is central to my life. But there are different ways of doing that. Political ephemera is quite a departure in tone and topic from what my audience expects and evidently wants from Raptitude, and signalling to right-wingers that they should get lost is at odds with what I think are more important messages of compassion and self-reflection.
If you want a good read on the dangers of Donald Trump, and what you can do about it, the Atlantic and Guardian articles I linked are much better what than I can offer.