Happy Anniversary to Us! Yes, it’s been 19 years, can you believe that? Sure, we’ve had our ups and downs, but, mostly it’s been wonderful and I find it hard to believe that it was 19 years ago we met, for the first time. I still love V very, very much and that’s all that counts in my book.
Now on to the Felicity Jane Lowde versus Rachel North et al. I found this completely by accident about 4 days ago. It has to be the strangest thing I’ve ever read about. I have spent the last 4 days reading through the fjlathome blog, trying to get one side of the story. Sorry, Rachel, I haven’t got to yours yet, but I did intend to go there, so I hope to soon.
It seems, from my cursory glance (not having finished Felicity’s blog yet) that this is something that got completely out of hand. I must admit that I haven’t had any ‘nasty’ comments on my blog (not enough readers and not enough controversy, you see), but if I did, then I would a) not publish the comment and b) not respond to any emails (please note that, for anyone who reads this and feels that they need to explain the whole saga for me).
It seems to me that, if you are in your right mind (and, to be honest, this applies to both ladies), you don’t publish the comments you don’t like or that are abusive or you’re rather stupid. Now, if you’re running a ‘public’ blog, and by that I mean a blog which invites people who can be rude to you or what you say, then fine. But both these ladies were running ‘private’ blogs. They had (or should have had) complete control over who comments and who doesn’t.
Then, there’s the emails. I don’t know about you, but my email system allows me to delete, automatically, emails from people I am not interested in (this would be classed as spam). At the worst case, I could delete them manually.
With regard to people writing horrible things about you on their blog(s) ignore them. If someone made a disparaging remark about me on their blog I would not respond by writing something equally nasty on my blog that just fuels the fire, not puts it out.
Now, as I say, I don’t know the full story and, to be honest, nor does anyone else except, perhaps, the ladies in question. One side says they didn’t write abusive or, in the words of Ms Lowde, malicious, emails, but the other side prints something that purports to be from them which is abusive or malicious. Now someone isn’t telling the whole truth here or perhaps it’s both of them?
To be honest, the comments I did see, about April, 2006 from Ms Lowde, were not very nice. As a 7/7 survivor, Ms North didn’t really deserve to be asked “why did you leave the dead and dying?” which was, in effect, what Ms Lowde asked. I wasn?t there, of course, but I think my first reaction would be to get out and I don’t think it would be my place to question what others did. I can understand if Ms North was a little upset by this. But the correct response to this question, in my opinion, would be to respond once only. If the other person couldn’t understand, then I would leave it and not respond again. It may be a valid question (though I wouldn’t have chosen to ask it of someone who had survived) but it should be made by some official not by ‘joe public’.
It seems that Ms Lowde was motivated by the fact that she felt there should not be a public inquiry whereas Ms North felt that there should be. Honestly, if Ms North wishes to press for a public inquiry, what the hell has it got to do with anyone else? Unless I was an official in MI5 or Special Branch or the Government, it’s not for me to get so uptight about it. Ms North may be right or wrong and I may have my opinion, but the way this spat went was just too much.
Ms Lowde feels she is the victim of a malicious (and I use her word) hate campaign where various people, who didn’t know each other before, got together to attack her. This may be true, or not. It has the possibility of being true, but the possibility doesn’t make it true. In the same vein, just because Ms Lowde was found guilty of harassment of Ms North, in abstentia, does not, unfortunately make it true either. I have been unable to finish reading Ms Lowde’s blog (it seems it may have been taken down, after all), but from what I remember reading, the computer was not analysed to confirm, or otherwise, the truth of her claims that Ms North had been harassing her. Without a forensic analysis of her computer, this would make it a possibility and therefore an unsafe verdict.
I am reminded of people I knew who have made the courts their life’s work but only in a suing/being sued way. And, at the end of the day, the only people who actually win are the people in the legal profession. It doesn’t make you a good person.
Whilst I was reading FJL’s blog I found my mind changing from what I saw as quite an OK person to a person too obsessed for their own good. Many posts were repeats of what had been said before. It seemed too vicious. And although I have not read Rachel North’s blog all the way through (it is said by some other bloggers and, I think, even Rachel herself, that some of the comments, etc. have been removed) but on the current, first page of her blog it reads in a similar way to FJL’s blog in its attacks and, to be honest does not make nice reading.
There are also other blogs on which they (the two ladies) have commented attacking each other in much the same way as each other. It’s not pleasant although it is interesting. But really, now that Ms Lowde’s blogs appear to have been taken down, enough, Rachel. And as for the campaign you started to ‘find Ms Lowde’ it shows the apparent power of the blogosphere but, since all these people don’t know the truth, only what you have told them, then it is just the same bullying tactic that you accuse her of and for which she appears to have been convicted.
Unfortunately, that makes you no better than her and it does not show you in a good light. To be honest, the very best thing that could happen would be a complete forensic examination of both Ms Lowde’s and Ms North’s hard disks and various other areas of blogspot.com. This would be the only solution to this sorry saga and, to be frank, the only way to complete justice for both.
Of course, that won’t be done as it would be far too expensive and far too time consuming and that’s a shame as, in the end, the truth will never out and it will only ever be one woman’s word against another.
I’ve purposely not included any links in this post as I refuse to be seen to support either side. If you want to find out more you can use Google Blog search or Technorati to find all the links you need.