Meet Lindsey Stone

Discussion in 'The Study' started by Tgace, Nov 20, 2012.

  1. Tgace

    Tgace Grandmaster

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    Take a look at Lindsey. She thought this would be a funny thing to post on Facebook.

    http://thisainthell.us/blog/?p=32934

    Unfortunately, Lindsey was also in DC on a business trip and the negative publicity generated by her "challenging authority" may very well cost her a job.

    "Challenging Authority"...who's authority? The Tomb Guard?
     
  2. Bob Hubbard

    Bob Hubbard Retired

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    Just another idiot with no manners looking for their 5 minutes of net-fame.
     
  3. Tgace

    Tgace Grandmaster

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  4. Bill Mattocks

    Bill Mattocks Sr. Grandmaster

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    In this new age of instant worldwide sharing, viral videos, photos, and text, there is a new paradigm regarding freedom of expression and the practical limits thereof.

    In previous times, a photo like this would be seen by a few of the person's friends, who might react with laughter or ridicule, acceptance or condemnation, but the behavior would remain essentially unknown to the rest of the world. She would have (and has, as far as I know) broken no law by her actions.

    However, in this new world, there will be a system of societal punishment meted out, and it is likely to be quite severe. Although most who see this information will simply be disgusted with her actions (as I am) and think she is not a very nice person (as I do), when millions see it, the number of unstable people who are not capable of reacting in accordance with social norms goes up. This means what we see here. Her employer has already been discovered, and is being inundated with demands that she be terminated from her employment. If she is, many will see this as some sort of 'victory', that she has been made to pay 'the price' for having offended them.

    Some tiny percentage of wackos may take it even further. I would not be surprised (but I would be disappointed) to find that she has been targeted for personal acts of vengeance or violence. People with her name may find themselves threatened or assaulted, even if they have no relationship to her at all, and simply share the same name.

    It would appear that we are returning, enthusiastically, to an age of the 'Scarlet Letter', and moving beyond it. Now public shaming is not enough; we are actively trying to destroy people we find objectionable. I would be willing to bet that if she were to take some drastic act like self-destruction, or if someone were in fact to commit a crime of violence upon her, there would be those who would feel that she most definitely had it coming.

    And regardless of whether one simply joins in the general condemnation or is further along the path of instability and violent behavior, howling mobs are howling mobs. They all bear the same guilt for the ultimate actions taken by the mob.

    Personally, I am offended by her behavior. Uncouth, boorish, childish, disrespectful, and mean-spirited. However, it is also useful to reflect on the irony as well as the fact that those who have fought for our nation and died have guaranteed that she has the right to behave this way. She may not realize it, but she is proving the correctness of their sacrifice, demonstrating that the freedom to even express hateful statements is protected. It is we who demand her employer terminate her, who howl for her blood, who demonstrate the opposite; that freedom of expression will only be permitted in this new world of instant communication if one is aligned with the current Zeitgeist.

    Those are my thoughts on the matter.
     
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  5. Tgace

    Tgace Grandmaster

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    What I find disturbing is her self identifiation as a "douchebag"...I seem to see more and more people thinking of that sort of label as a good thing. The Jersey Shoreing of society.

    People also seem confused about what the first amendment protects them from and what it does not.

    I'm with you Bill. A disgusting example of what I see as a distrubing behavorial trend, and an example of how the media has changed the consequences of our behavior. But in the end nothing worth storming the castle over.

    If I was an employer though, I would have to question this persons common sense and good judgement.

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  6. Tgace

    Tgace Grandmaster

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    And are that many people really so ignorant about FB security settings?

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  7. Bill Mattocks

    Bill Mattocks Sr. Grandmaster

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    It may well be true, and I see your point. But I also think that finding the most offensive thing possible and then doing it with great gusto has been a hallmark of the young seeking freak out the older generation since approximately ever.

    Well, it is quite true that the First Amendment protects a person's right to freedom of expression, but does not protect them from the consequences of their actions. In other words, if she gets fired from her job because of people expressing their anger at her employer, her rights have not been violated. But society has effectively imposed a practical limit on that freedom, where the government does not. See where I'm going with this? The government says such public speech is protected. Society says if she in fact engages in it, the price will be heavy indeed, such as it will serve to have a chilling effect on anyone thinking of expressing their opinions in a similar way.

    Well, I spent some time at Gettysburg National Cemetery some time ago with family and friends. I saw the same sign, and found it powerful and moving. Of course, I was both silent and showed respect. However, I noticed families wandering around chatting away on their cell phones, kids running over graves with their parents doing and saying nothing about it, people making funny or snide comments about facial expressions on statues, and so on. None of them had their disrespectful behavior recorded and posted online as far as I know, but they were all (to my way of thinking) disrespectful. Are they not also worthy of losing their jobs? Do they not also lack common sense and good judgment?

    My point here is that there was a time in America and indeed in the world, when one did not dare step out of line, because the social consequences could be severe. Being ostracized by one's church, by the town, by society in general, could have devastating effects. If one held conflicting opinions, one kept them to oneself.

    Then we had all this freedom stuff, and people went nuts with it.

    Now we seem to be returning to a sort of instant societal thumbs up / thumbs down model. We (society) are Caesar. The act performs, and we either give it it a thumbs up, in which case their video does Gangnam Style dancing all over Creation, or we give it a thumbs down, in which case the performer soon has no job, no house, no food, and in fact if they are found in a roadside ditch with their throat cut, so much the better.

    One dare not anger Caesar, eh? Woe betide anyone who expresses a strong public belief that others find objectionable.

    Last point: we also live in the land of 'all my sins remembered'. Everything we say online may be recorded somewhere and available to one who is looking for it. One may find that not only do they lose their job (perhaps justly) for an act of youthful indiscretion, but that one is punished for the rest of their life for it.
     
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  8. Tgace

    Tgace Grandmaster

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    Thing is Bill...young? While she's younger than us, she's old enough to be a money manager on a DC business trip. By her apparent age I was already a married father. I get what you are saying, but hesitate to minimize her behavior due to age. I think that if she were a HS student on a field trip the disussion would be different here.

    And what people fail to see is that the internet is the public square. If your Gettysburgh people got in front of a news camera and made statements that would be different from what they were doing. Its the "mass media" display of our behavior that is the example of poor judgement...more than the behavior in itself in most cases.

    I see no error in what you are saying, but what is going on here is what we have to live with...these are the facts. Other than bemoaning the state of affairs what should be done?

    IMO what has changed here is technology more than human behavior.

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    Last edited: Nov 20, 2012
  9. Bill Mattocks

    Bill Mattocks Sr. Grandmaster

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    Yes, she is young only in comparison to some of us. I guess what I am pointing out is that the consequences of her actions will reverberate for a long time, possibly the rest of her life. Appropriate punishment for her error in judgment?

    Or if I had merely videotaped them and put it online, along with some comment that allowed personal identification by intrepid net-savvy people (I'm one of them, very good at finding such stuff out).

    Quite right, very little to be done about it, other than perhaps to sound the warning bell so that some few might examine their thoughts before joining in the general hew and cry. I am a commentator on what appears to be a growing trend, and I ask only "Is this the path we wish to tread?" I cannot stop it in any case, but perhaps a few people might take notice.
     
  10. granfire

    granfire Sr. Grandmaster

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    Lindsey who?

    I think if we bothered - collectively - more with our problem and ignored the idiots of the world more (the harmless ones, naturally) we would give them a much smaller stage on which to perform their antics.

    (In other words, I am sorry I even clicked on the provided links, since this person has no influence n me what so ever)

    At least Alexandra Wallace caused the discovery of a wonderful talent....
     
  11. Tgace

    Tgace Grandmaster

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    Would...should...could.

    I agree, but the fact is that what we see here is what IS. Ignoring the effect of new media is like saying "television? Interesting but it will never catch on". Lol!

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  12. Tgace

    Tgace Grandmaster

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    Have situations like this reduced the use of social media in any way? Remember, most of these incidents are the result of a person deciding to post their own dirty laundry (vs a third party posting it).

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  13. decepticon

    decepticon Green Belt

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    How the pendulum swings. Earlier in the 20th century people's behavior was judged by those around them, sometimes harshly. Then it became politically incorrect to pass judgement (or at least to vocalize that judgement) on others - "live and let live" and all. Now, with electronic media creating the option for everyone to anonymously pass judgement, we are back to societal conscience judging behavior again. It frightens me to think about the lack of accountabilty there is for those self-appointed judges.

    The Stone woman meant for everyone to see how cool and fearless she was. What they saw was the disrespectful, "rebel without a clue" and a lot of very poor judgement beneath the bravado. As is so often the case, people who enjoy a tremendous amount of freedom forget that freedom isn't without consequence. The freedom to express yourself comes hand in hand with the freedom to humiliate yourself.

    Although I don't think Stone deserves to lose her job due to the fact that she expressed herself in a rude and inappropriate way, I do hope her job performance will be given careful scrutiny. She demonstrated a serious lack of judgement and lack of self control. Not exactly skills one would hope to find in a money manager. I hope her employer will base their decision on job performance and not on the vitriol spewed their direction from a bunch of anonymous rabble rousers, many with a slow week on their hands and nothing personal to lose.

    For the record, it disgusts me that she felt the need to disrespect the very people who died to enable her to have the freedom to do what she did.
     
  14. Bill Mattocks

    Bill Mattocks Sr. Grandmaster

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    Well, I personally have chosen not to say certain things online, based on my understanding of how jobs can be lost. People on MT have said some interesting and absolutely untrue things about a company I do business with, and I will not, under any circumstances, respond. Not even to correct the record. My lips are sealed regarding anything with my employer or my employer's clients names on them.

    Why? I certainly have the right to express an opinion, and I have the right to have an opinion that is not favorable towards the above if I wish. I might even have information, not proprietary or secret information, that would set the record straight. However, you will never hear it from me.

    All it takes is one angry person who decides to figure out who I work for and go direct to my employer to complain, and I have no job anymore. Do you think that affects my decisions to voice my opinions? Yes, it does. It makes me afraid. So afraid that I will not say certain things, no matter how much I want to.

    Is that how we have free and open discourse in this world now? If we can't win an argument by persuasion, reason, and logic, we just go get the a-hole fired from his job?

    It would seem so.

    And I will bet that I am not the only person who has figured out that it's not hard to get someone angry enough to call your boss, your sensei, your spouse, your relatives, or anyone else they can find and make your life a living hell, just because they cannot best you in conversation. Note my disclaimer. There's a reason for it.
     
  15. Tgace

    Tgace Grandmaster

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    Yup.

    I find this a fascinating example of the changes the internet is causing in our world. And I wonder...what has really changed? Isn't this just tar and feathering on a digital level? Has the net changed "us" or or we just the same ole folks with a new medium of expression?



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    Last edited: Nov 20, 2012
  16. WC_lun

    WC_lun Senior Master

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    I'm still of the opinion that free speach does not mean freedom from consequences. Do something stupid and offensive you don't get arrested, but if you lose your job because others find your behaviour stupid and offensive then put on your big boy (or girl) pants and deal with it. Maybe you should have thought about that before performing the action or posting it on Facebook. Similiarly, anyone threatening her or her employer should be held to the same standard...and also suffer the legal ramifications of threatening others. It gets kind of old the douchebags of the world's cry of persecution because society is holding them accountable for thier own bad behaviour. It really isn't that hard a concept to understand. Many two year olds already have a firm grasp on it. Bad behaviour has negative effects. don't want to experience those negative effects, don't behave badly.
     
  17. Bill Mattocks

    Bill Mattocks Sr. Grandmaster

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    Ah, but the rub is that one does not have to behave 'badly' to be punished in such a manner. One can merely behave in a way which someone else finds offensive.

    In this manner, ALL behavior can have negative and over-the-top effects out of all proportion to what has been said. Every crank, essentially, is punished for behaving badly, yes, but every person who has a strong opinion but is NOT behaving badly is subject to the exact same retribution.

    How would you address that?
     
  18. arnisador

    arnisador Sr. Grandmaster

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    I'm with you. Her employer would be well within its rights to terminate her for this dumb move--but if you're in uniform for any other reason than to protect my right to burn a flag, insult the president, and moon my congressman, you're not truly fighting for my freedom but rather for your vision of "our way of life". Whether I want to do any of those things or not, knowing you've helped maintain a country with strong freedom of expression rights is the reward, not an insult.

    We need to figure out privacy in the digital age.
     
  19. arnisador

    arnisador Sr. Grandmaster

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    Also a good question--though once it's up, it can go anywhere even still.
     
  20. arnisador

    arnisador Sr. Grandmaster

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    I'm a tenured full professor. I can say (almost) anything and it would be very, very hard for them to fire me because of it. I have a very strong guarantee of job protection under academic freedom. The outrageous things I say on Facebook under my own name--well, if you think I'm anti-religion and anti-GOP here, you wouldn't want to see the offensive stuff I post there. (Bob Hubbard will back me up on this.) I can swear at my boss, as long as I teach my classes (and don't go too far).

    It's been very freeing for me in this digital age, and I appreciate that my position is unlike that of most people. My wife largely shares my religious and political opinions but she works for a county govt. agency and is more circumspect about who she adds as a friend and what she posts, while I have the Dean of Faculty--the boss of my boss, politically but not socially conservative--on my list (not that he logs on much). It's great for me to not have to worry about what I say or who hears it--but I counsel my kids quite differently.

    I've used my academic freedom for good, as when I swayed the religiously conservative crowd at my Midwestern college enough toward partner benefits for gay employees to see it pass by speaking up and voicing my opinion. (I was untenured then, but academic freedom still buys you a lot of room.) It was very unpopular with a bare majority of the faculty--some departments have as many as three weekend evangelical ministers on their faculty even though we're not religiously affiliated in any way--but I could speak my mind there, talking about how things had been at other schools I had taught at (including a Jesuit university that was very open-minded). I use it in discussions of curriculum all the time. But it also let's me speak freely here. I couldn't be fired for posting a picture like that--I couldn't be fired for posting a picture like that with me stark naked and hugging Kim Jong-un.

    It would be beneficial for more Americans to have this kind of freedom. Social media is a main carrier of public discourse, and the First Amendment is there to both protect and encourage political discourse. Private conversations, small-town public speeches, and reading the newspaper to follow discussion of major issues, are all being challenged by the discuss-it-on-the-web model. If people can't do that freely, we lose.123
     

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