I’m proud of the blogs, especially the big guys

I have been offline all day. Monday it will be one month since my brother passed, and today our family gathered at the hospice for a memorial service for S, and a reunion of sorts – a very emotional one – with the wonderful nurses and staff who helped us through his last months.

I didn’t think I would weep so much. I thought…well, I had convinced myself that I had made great progress in moving forward from the keenest part of grief…but when they played Amazing Grace, and I recalled singing that very hymn into his ear the night before he left us, while his eyes were closed, his grip surprisingly strong on my hand…

And then, of course, remembering his brothers slowly processing into church with his pall-draped casket, and Buster, up in the organ loft, playing a plaintive and sad and lovely blue version of the same great hymn…

Too much. It suddenly felt like too much, and we all wept and it was like the ripping open of a freshly scabbed-over wound. I couldn’t help but think of Christ, having been scourged and then covered, having his robe ripped from him again, feeling his fresh wounds, stanched by the cloth, suddenly re-opened. I understood.

I haven’t thought much today about blogs or news. After the memorial, we traveled to another son’s college to visit with him, briefly, and then came home to find a flood form a burst hose. Ah, well. Some days you’re grateful for small calamities that keep you busy and your mind (mercifully) otherwise occupied.

It’s late, now, and I’m tired. I haven’t even had the energy to peek at most of the blogs in my blogroll, or to read much, at all. But I am really happy, really pleased, to note that the blogs do not appear to have spent the day gloating about Eason Jordan’s resignation, or the ever-growing effectiveness of blogger research and commentary.

I notice that Michelle Malkin has jumped right into an important story about a French UN official perpetrating something very, very bad in the Congo. LaShawn is taking a well-deserved breather and the rest of the big bloggers are conspicuous in their business-as-usual mien. This is really good. Gloating would have been wrong. As much as some on the left, like my friend Joe Marshall, accused the bloggers of collecting a scalp, the truth is the bloggers merely did what the mainstream press should have done: asked about what happened, and tried to get Jordan to take responsibility for his charges – to either produce evidence, or explain his words.

The saddest thing about this whole episode (and there is much about which to be sad) is that it could have been adroitly avoided, had Jordan simply addressed the questions as soon as they were asked, in an open and self-effacing manner. Something along the lines of, “yes, I did say it, and it was wrong of me to say it. Clearly, my mouth was moving way before my brain was in gear, and therefore nothing I said came out as I meant it to, and I couldn’t feel worse about it…”

Jordan, unfortunately has a history of speaking irresponsibly about America troops while on foreign soil, and bloggers have long memories, so a self-effacing apology might not have been “enough” to quiet their questions…but it might have been enough to keep him from having to resign rather than allow the questions to continue.

The Jordan story was not a scalping but, I get the impression that more than one blogger (myself included) sat back last night, after the initial breaking of the resignation story, and the flurry of postings, everywhere, and said…THIS is a powerful, powerful tool…and it must be respected, and used wisely and discriminatingly and well.

And honestly.

The blogosphere cannot be used (as some, notably Kos, would) for the dissemination of daily memes against the other side, or for the presentation of out-and-out hate. The blogs cannot be used for the satisfaction of markers, or the ruin of respectable people who perhaps misspeak – as we all do from time to time. And, it cannot simply be used as a bludgeoning tool – a blunt instrument of bandwidth with which to conk someone on the head.

It seems to me, from the rather quiet “day after” in the blogs, that most of us realize it. And that makes me proud of my fellow bloggers.

That said – tomorrow is another day – a quiet one in these parts, for it is Sunday in Lent. I did want to direct your attention to this thought provoking post by Matteo at Cartago Delenda Est.

Have a good day’s rest.

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