You Don’t Have To Accept Bad Criticism

Some time ago I’d written a post about something local on this blog. I shared it with some local people just to spread the word. None of them commented on it, which is the norm it seems. However, one wrote me back on Twitter and his comment was “Man, that’s an ugly webpage.”

What the heck was that? Where did that come from? This is a guy who 1) doesn’t have a webpage; 2) has a Blogger blog in green and brown that he’s never tried to sculpt; 3) basically writes one post a year on that blog, usually when he’s mad; 4) couldn’t say a thing when I asked him why he said it and then; 5) never responded once again when I said it’s a blog, not a webpage, but it suits my purpose.

All of us are going to be criticized in some fashion at some point in our lives; some of us hear it daily. There’s nothing wrong with people who are giving you advice that might help you as long as you’re ready to hear it; I’m one of those people who doesn’t want it unless I’m asked unless it’s something really egregious like a misspelled word or a phrase someone doesn’t understand. And, for a blog, there’s nothing wrong with giving our opinions in public, especially once an article it out there, as long as you don’t get personal and keep things confined to the article in question.

However, there’s a lot of bad criticism out there, things that people say with no intention except to cut other down. They’re not trying to help; they’re not trying to be constructive. They’re only trying to build themselves up by whatever means necessary, and if they can take it out on you at a moment’s notice, so be it.

I remember years ago when I shared a portion of my book early on with someone I was playing email chess again. His response back to me was “have you ever read a book”? That was it; nothing else. It hurt; I won’t lie. I stopped writing… for about an hour. Then I was back into my writing mode because my mind realized his criticism meant nothing. One, nothing constructive; two, he’d never written anything himself. And three, of course I’d read books; how did that help push anything positive through?

If you put yourself out there and ask others for opinions on something, you obviously open yourself to someone busting on you for something. Sometimes what you get back makes sense; sometimes what you get back in invective. You don’t have to take that; no one has to take bad criticism.

For the record, bad criticism means there’s no attempt to give a person an opportunity to improve in any way. Bad criticism is “I hate your webpage”. Good criticism is “Having light green against a pink background is hard to read and might be hard for other people to see easily”. Bad criticism is “I hate what you wrote here; your opinion stinks”. Good criticism is “I disagree with your point because….”

Back in September I had kind of a row with someone on this blog when I wrote a post questioning modesty of today’s kids and blaming it on parents. Parents tend to get defensive because they say it’s hard controlling their kids; I don’t tend to let them off the hook. Yet, parents also take things like this personal even when it’s not against them specifically. Bad criticism is “you don’t know what it’s like being a parent”; phooey. Good criticism… well, in this case I’m not sure what good criticism is. It’s a post where people either agree or disagree, but I’m not sure it’s a post where anyone can support the argument for what some might deem salacious outfits by young girls and not being able to control what they wear. That’s what parenting is supposed to be, folks.

The general point is that no one should allow the potential of bad criticism stop them from doing or saying what they feel is necessary, as long as they’re prepared to accept the consequences of those actions or feelings. And if there are consequences and you feel you’re in the right, then go ahead and keep doing it; unless someone else is paying you, you really don’t have to acquiesce to bad criticism. Most people who criticize you have nothing to offer other than the criticism.

Anyone want to criticize that? lol

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Sunday Question – What Happened To Modesty?

Contrary to anyone’s opinion I’m not a prude, nor anywhere close to a prude. I do believe there are breaches of protocol as it pertains to young people, most specifically young girls, that leads me to ask the question “what’s happened to modesty?”


Modesty by Chris JL

I was at the New York State Fair on Friday with my wife, and we have very good time. What was troubling to me was the overwhelming number of young girls, most of whom had to be under 18 if not 16, wearing very short shorts and very tight shorts.

Like I said, think I’m anywhere close to being a prude, but when you’re seeing what is known as “camel toe” and you know you have to burn your eyes, scrub your brain, and say 20 Hail Mary’s when you get home, even if you’re not Catholic, you know that there’s a problem with modesty.

I’m not going to go down the moral road, because I don’t know that morality has anything to do with modesty in this case. I tend to think that teenagers in general are going to get away with whatever they can get away with without thinking much about consequences; they did that back in my day as well.

If they’re with a large group of people the consequences might be fewer than if they were in a small group, or if they were in a place less crowded than a major state fair. Yet, a young person could be separated from the group and grabbed by someone with a lot of guts and stupidity even in such a public place.

A big part of me asks where the parents are and what parents are thinking by allowing their young girls to walk around like this. I don’t mean alone with their friends; I mean with their parents!

I asked my wife what her thoughts were. She said there was no way in the world she would have allowed her daughters to walk out of the house dressed this way. In many instances, it seemed like what they were wearing was way more revealing than if they were at the beach wearing bikinis.

Much of this could be me suffering once again from the generation gap. After all, I remember back in the 70s when there was all this concern about girls wearing mini skirts, hot pants and tube tops and thinking that some adults might be behind the times. I also know that a lot of those girls put that stuff on once they left the house so their parents wouldn’t find out.

Then again, I also remember being young and enthusiastic and enjoying those times when I could take a peek at what a lot of the young ladies were wearing, and since they were closer to my age I didn’t have a problem with any of it. Sorry ladies; I was a normal teenager! lol

I’m reminded of a coworker back in the mid-80s who had a very shapely body and occasionally wore this pink sweater dress that she loved. I remember our conversation one day when she said she was never going to wear that dress again because she started to notice how older men were staring at her and didn’t like how she felt with their stares.

When she said this she’d just turned 20, and I remember thinking that I met her when she was only 18, and how naïve I thought she was in wearing that particular dress and some of her other outfits at the time. That she had this epiphany for the first time as she was leaving her teens helped to highlight the fact that teenagers really don’t have much of a clue as to the effect their appearance has on those of the opposite sex, no matter what their age is. That’s why I’m putting it on the back of parents; they should know better and attempt to teach their children better.

I also have to say that it wasn’t only young teenage girls were dressed this way, although overwhelmingly it was. I understand the concept of “if you got it flaunt it”, but usually you’ll see a few 30 and 40-year-olds dressing that way if they still got it… or think they do. But when they “don’t got it” and are still dressing as if they do, and you see bulging stomachs hanging outside of shirts that are too short because they’re trying to dress like the kids of today… well… you know…

So… what happened to modesty? Is it a product of the generation gap, a sign of the times, or something else I’m not thinking of?
 

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