What has become of the world when these two things seem almost impossible to find. The common courtesy of saying ‘please’ and ‘thank you’, of respecting another person’s opinion even when it doesn’t mesh with your own. The courtesy of allowing another to have an opinion that differs from your own and to discuss those different ideas without devolving into a juvenile shouting match of name calling and derision.
What ever happened to common sense?! The idea of the Golden Rule and simply being decent to other human beings seems to have gone the way of the Dodo. Small, random acts of kindness become a huge big deal because they are so unusual these days. Common sense that there are other people on the planet that have their own thoughts, feelings and lives that are just as important to them as yours is to you.
It seems in this time of ‘entitlement’ and instant gratification, people lean towards doing whatever is great for them and anyone they affect can just suck it up. As long as they don’t REALLY hurt them (i.e. physically) what is the big deal?! Do whatever is best for yourself and your gratification, to heck with everyone else.
This makes me utterly, profoundly sad and more than a little angry.
Fandoms….seem to be a microcosm of the world at large – an effective mirror. This smaller community within the larger community gives us an interesting picture of the world at large. Some of what we see is heartwarming; other things not so much.
For instance….the recent ‘squeezing’ of Mr. Heughan’s ass.
I don’t want to start the war up again. The female in question (NOT a lady) has been slapped around on SM for a few days now. Not why I bring it up. I want to point at a recent, very specific example of what I’m talking about.
This chick wanted to grope some guy she doesn’t know because it would be a thrill for her – so damn the consequences – that is what she did. It was rude; it was selfish; it took advantage of a kindness this man had extended by allowing her in his personal space for a picture. It gave HER gratification while not caring at all how it would make him feel or the consequences of her actions.
Consequences – she got slammed across social media, especially because she bragged about doing this. It wasn’t an ‘accident’, it was a purposeful action. She has tried to spin it since the storm hit her, but a few too many have the original post documented for that. A very sweet man was put in an awkward position and a lot of people got very angry & indignant – and expressed this.
It’s not that Sam needs the fans to ‘protect’ him – he’s a grown man and very capable. We do feel protective though….not just of the people we love to watch, but of our privileges as fans and the impact such blatant disregard for Sam (or Cait or Graham or Ron or Terry or anyone else associated with the show) might have on future interactions for other fans.
Discussion about this topic was good! It gave the ‘community’ a very distinct focus to be able to hash out what is / is not acceptable. It establishes solid guidelines for those who may not be sure and helps everyone be on the same page. To be fair though….while constructive criticism of the ACT and the total lack of common sense or courtesy is a good thing, devolving into name calling and threats is not. That is not constructive.
We, as a fandom, have had some pretty negative stuff going on: the ‘shipper’ war, a feeling of entitlement about getting to see and experience while waiting for the next season, being snotty and disrespectful to Terry and Ron especially, but also Sam & Cait and others just because things don’t mesh with what someone thinks they are entitled to or how they think it should be; bullying and just plain old meanness.
I’ve also seen this fandom to some absolutely awesome epic shit! How many thousands of dollars have been raised for charity? Look at how we have made STARZ and the Emmy’s and other corporate types sit up and take notice of what a united fandom can do! We have banded together to defeat established shows and their stars in vote after vote and get OUR show and stars into some limelight!
Like the world at large, the Outlander fandom is a mix of all sorts of things. We have some really great, inspiring people in this fandom – artists and writers and bakers and those who just care and pitch in where ever and how ever they can to make a positive difference in other people’s lives. We have some really selfish, self-absorbed people that seem to have the purpose of making everyone else as miserable as possible. We have those between the two extremes that swing both ways depending on the particular issue at hand.
I know there are those out there that think I’m being ‘preachy’ and should just shut the f*ck up. Ignorance and stupidity really annoy me and I get steamed. I’m trying to get better about cooling off before I blog. I’ve said it many times. Courtesy and Common Sense. I’ll keep saying it. If we can practice these ideas the fandom, and the world will be a much better place overall. Express yourself without being mean or getting into pissing matches, listen to other POV’s – discuss, analyze, and expand your thinking with other ideas! What life is about! A couple of goofy guys really had this right and it’s such a simple concept.